THE LOVE LIST: CRAFTY ESSENTIALS

The Love List: Crafty Essentials | Amy Tangerine

You have been asking for my favorite crafty supplies and tools, and finally here it is. These are the essentials I have been using and loving. Feel free to share your favorites in the comments - I love learning about new go-to supplies to add to my stash.

Artist's Loft Watercolor Set - People are constantly asking me on Instagram what my favorite watercolors are. I even made a dedicated video on it because the question came up so much. Hopefully it's thorough enough for you. It's certainly a great price with wonderful colors. Of course there are plenty of other better options out there, but for the price, I don't think this one can be beat. 

Washi Tapes -  Super cute set of pineapples in a great color assortment

American Crafts Cardstock - I like the 8.5x11" version for the Motivational Monday quotes, but the 12x12" pad is good to have on hand too.

Cutterbee Scissors - my go-to sharp little scissors perfect for fussy cutting. Someone said they travel on the airplane with these, but I am always afraid of getting them taken up. 

Traveler's Notebook - this turquoise refill is extremely difficult to find in any other place besides Japan.

Royal 2 Brush - this was my first love when I first started doing brush lettering years ago. 

Minc Foil Applicator - It's fantastic to have in the studio, and since I just moved, I plan on keeping it out on the table so it gets used more often. Once you start adding foil to things, you may find the process quite addictive!

Tim Holtz Water Brush - the detailer tip brush is, in my opinion, is perfect for making both thick and thin strokes. Plus traveling with it is a cinch! Great for creating on the go.

Fiskars 12 Inch Paper Trimmer - I have a number of these trimmers, which work great. I have since fallen for their new (as of 2016) reinforced aluminum trimmer. You can't really go wrong with either, but I am finding myself using the aluminum one more these days.

American Crafts Sticky Thumb Tape Runner + Refills - Running out of adhesive is never fun. I have tons of these on hand and have been known to go through quite a few on the days where we are cranking out client scrapbook pages. I also have become smitten with the Tombow Glue Tape, and will be ordering more refills soon.

 

The Happy Sleeper

Mommy & Me class at the Pump Station

Photo taken October 2014 at The Pump Station

Though Jack and I no longer go to our Mommy & Me classes, (you can see the cool thing we made for graduation here), we have kept up our friendships with many of the fellow people in the class and also the teacher. Julie (the only one not holding a baby in the photo above) helped guide me through many of the struggles of being a first time mom. I know it sounds extreme, but I am not quite sure how I would have survived Jack's first 6 months without the class. We all cried together, shared stories, laughed a lot and grew as moms. We talked a lot about sleep, which turns out is a pretty controversial topic. But one thing I know for sure is that I could barely function with being sleep deprived.

When Jack was around 4 months old he was waking up just once in the night, which was wonderful to me. Then he regressed and was waking up twice. Well, that just threw me for a loop and I read all the sleep books that were recommended to me. We decided it was really important to us that Jack learn to soothe himself to sleep when he was ready to do so. Since Julie advised not to start a sleep plan until after the age of 5 months, I got a bit antsy. Because so many of us in class were wanting to know how we could get our babies sleeping through the night, she led us through discussions a bit early. Thank goodness for that, because I really needed to be getting more uninterrupted sleep. Julie's approach to mindful parenting helped me through it. She told us she was co-authoring a book and we all could not wait to read it. Well, long story short, her methods helped us help Jack sleep through the night at around 4 and half months and then he got better with his naps at about 6 and half months. Of course there are other factors that I think really helped - moving him into his own room, then into the crib, and being able to turn over and sleep on his stomach. It also helped with him being a thumb sucker. To this day he is a wonderful sleeper and I believe that the methods we learned in class helped me a great deal. And helped keep me sane! For those of you who are blessed with babies who sleep through the night

Even though I had just gotten off a plane, I got home, dropped my bags, hugged Jack like crazy and then took him to Julie's launch party for The Happy Sleeper.

Photography by Docuvitae

Such a fun event, even though Jack and I had to leave a bit early due to his bedtime. Congrats Julie & Heather on your amazing book, The Happy Sleeper!

 

 

LEXYPEXY

Jack was so kindly gifted one of these adorable wooden teethers from Lexy Pexy at the Boom Boom Room event. We love how they are handcrafted out of sustainable Vermont Maple wood. The wood is non-splintering, naturally anti-bacterial, non-allergenic and non-toxic. And their styles are absolutely adorable. We loved meeting the sweet owners, Lex and Martin.amy tangerine - lexy pexyamy tangerine - lexy pexy amy tangerine - lexy pexy amy tangerine - lexy pexy amy tangerine - lexy pexyHere's what Lex, had to say: "We fell in love with Jack at first fist bump, which throughout the day became a fist bump explosion, (I will take credit for that). Such a sweetie he clung on while we drew on the floor together and he only tried to eat the chalk once. I could seriously snuggle that baby to pieces!" And Jack loved the cuddles and hanging out too, thanks for the sweet shades, Lexypexy!

What we pack for a little picnic

IMG_1012Lately we've been really enjoying picnic-ing and having meals/snacks outdoors. At least once a week I try and take Jack for a little mommy & me date to the park. We find a shady spot and sit on our Skip Hop blanket - it's foldable and zips into itself - totally functional and cute. And most importantly, it's machine washable. We also have the matching diaper bag that we love. IMG_1003 IMG_1008 IMG_1009We pack Jack's food (white cheddar cheese and green beans here) in these awesome glass Wean Green containers - the 4oz cubes seem to work really well for us. We got the limited edition lunch bag met the awesome CEO at this event. Her sweet daughters enjoyed playing with my scrapbook products and Jack just liked watching them. Now he's more of a doer and usually enjoys playing with the lids, but this time he's got his hands on my favorite go-to snacks - Kind bars. They are delicious and easy to throw into the bag. I imagine this scene will change quite a bit once Jack is walking, but for now, life is a picnic. If you have any favorite products, snacks, or tips to share, please do so in the comments! Photos by Jamie Waters

Newborn Essentials

Newborn Essentials | Amy TanIt took some time to compile this list, mainly because I wanted to make sure I only included items that we really loved and would probably be most helpful to others. Some of these were on our registry, some of them we bought ourselves and some were even hand-me-downs. No matter how we acquired them, looking back, these things really have helped us get through being new parents. Thanks so much to the friends who recommended them. 1. Suri the Octopus and Friends Teether. Everyone loves Sophie the giraffe, but Jack cannot get enough of this anchor right now.

2. Fisher Price Cradle 'N Swing. For us, this was a life saver for the first 3 months. JC set it up in our living room and Jack felt comforted and loved it from the moment he laid in it when we got back from the hospital.

3. Sprout App. Keeping track of Jack's diapers and feedings was really important to me because I didn't seem to remember a thing. So easy to use, and it became a habit after some time. It really helped to see patterns and establish somewhat of a routine for us and we still are using it today.

4. Britax B-Agile Travel System.  It's easy to use and go places with - I highly recommend it for new moms. And yes, there is a recall but it seems like an easily avoidable thing if you use it properly and the way we have always used it. We love this system so much - it's perfect for us and was right on budget.

5. MD Moms Baby Silk Shampoo. Their lotion is also wonderful as well! Love the light scent and though the bottle seems to still have product when it stops pumping (I just pour it into another container for travel), we have used these products the most.

6. ErgoBABY Carrier. This is so comfortable for both Jack and me. I used it after he was 12 pounds, so never needed the infant insert.

7. Medela Pump. Insurance provided us with the Ameda, but I think this is way better and worth the investment for breastfeeding mamas.

8. Fisher Price Deluxe Newborn Vibrating Rock 'n Play Sleeper. For us, this was a life saver for the first 4 months. We didn't get it until night 3 of being at home, and man it made such a difference in sleep for all of us. Jack never seemed to like sleeping flat on his back, so this was a great place for him to rest next to our bed.

9. The Honest Co. Diapers. Love the designs and the philosophy of the company. The prints are fun and this is what we used for the first 4 months. We have since switched to Huggies, mainly because it's available at Costco.