• This angel baby is the calm in the chaos over here. The other two are bouncing off the walls and she’s just so happy and sweet.
  • How is everyone doing? today was so rough. *this picture is not from today* Blaire and Ben wake up before Jason even leaves for work. They wake me and Sloane both up. It feels like I spend my whole day breaking up fights. And part of me feels like I can’t complain because I left my job to work from home (for myself) and be with my kids. But, I have to remind myself this is new for me. I haven’t been at home with three kids before. The schedules of a 6 year old, 3 year old and 5 month old are very different. From being in school for the past six-ish months, Blaire wants to constantly be learning. She wants me to be reading to her, doing crafts with her, etc. and that’s hard with a 5 month old attached to me and a 3 year old who can’t sit still. Anyone else who feels lost during this time, just know you’re not alone. But we can do it! I’m so hopeful nice weather is coming and that will make the days so much more bearable! Fingers crossed anyways. 🤞🏻 #happilytrista
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#socialdistancing #momentsofmine #momentslikethese #motherhoodunplugged #pickinguplitter #momof3 #momofthree
  • step 1: get your baby sleeping.
step 2: get yourself to stop staying up on your phone until midnight. [ad] It’s been over a month of using the @littleonesbabysleep program with little Sloaney girl here. She’s self-settling at bedtime and overnight, sleeping in her crib without being swaddled, and it’s glorious. I’m sharing all about our experience on the blog… and there just might be a discount code, too. #littleones #littleonessleep #littleonesbabysleep #happilytrista
  • our neighborhood has been posting different activities in our Facebook group. today was “chalk your walk”. So we drew all kinds of stuff on our driveway and sidewalk. I hope they bring a smile to someone when they’re out for a [cold] walk! #happilytrista
  • my baby boy is THREE! 3 years of Benjamin Robert. the perfect mix of sweet and sour. always kissing us, then jumping off the furniture and pulling Blaire’s hair 3 seconds later. •
#happilytrista #gobenitsyourbday #threeyesrsold #threenager #momentsinmotherhood #momentslikethese #motherhood #momof3 #momofthree
  • going through these photos from our session with @rachelclemphotography a few weeks ago and they are giving me all the feels. 🥰❤️ #happilytrista
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#babywearing #babywear #wearallthebabies #mywildbird #babywearingmama #attachmentparenting #momentslikethese #momentsiwanttoremember #rainbowbaby #breastfeedingmom #breastfeeding #magicofchildhood #momentsiwanttoremember
  • thankful for baby wearing and breaks in the rain. 🌧 #happilytrista •

#babywearing #babywear #wearallthebabies #mywildbird #babywearingmama #attachmentparenting #momentslikethese #momentsiwanttoremember #rainbowbaby #breastfeedingmom #breastfeeding #magicofchildhood #momentsiwanttoremember
  • accurate depiction of life right now. 🤪 #happilytrista #socialdistancing
  • this photo was our workout for the day. 💪🏻 j/k. we got dressed in our green and went shamrock hunting around the neighborhood. we found lots in people’s windows, they had so much fun. it was less than 40° but sunny! ☀️ are you self distancing? how’s it going? #happilytrista #selfdistancing
  • we have to stay inside for how long? 😳how are you passing the time? and how’s the weather where you live? it’s a cool 30° here this morning. ❄️ #happilytrista #mywildbird #wearallthebabies
  • Don’t they look like they’re up to something? It’s 3-on-1, 10 hours per day for the next 5 days. 😅🤪 #happilytrista
March 23, 2018

transitioning to a convertible car seat + extended rear-facing

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Graco Extend2Fit 4Ever Car Seat - Extended Rear-FacingBen is almost 11 months and we’re finally transitioning him to a convertible car seat because he is HEAVY.

Carrying his little 23lb self + his 8lb car seat is giving me quite the arm workout/neck problems. He still falls asleep during most trips in the car so it has just been easier for us to keep him in a seat we can take in and out of the car with us. Plus it’s COLD here in the midwest, so it was definitely faster to be able to buckle him while inside. But, it’s finally time. And Ben loves his new car seat! 

Graco Extend2Fit 4Ever Car SeatExtended rear-facing is so, SO important to me. Anyone who KNOWS me, knows how passionate I am, not only about extended rear-facing, but about car seat safety in general. If you haven’t heard the term “Extended Rear-Facing” before, I can explain:

Extended rear-facing is choosing to keep your child’s car seat rear-facing past the age of legal requirement, usually until the age of 4 or as long as the height/weight limit on your child’s seat will allow. 

As a new mom, I was clueless about car seat safety. I didn’t know exactly where to place the chest clip, how loose/tight the straps should be or that children shouldn’t wear heavy jackets in their car seats. Luckily I joined the Car Seats for the Littles Facebook Group when Blaire was only a few months old. Since then, I’ve spent hours and hours reading about car seat safety best practices, because 1) anxiety 2) there are so many nuances to it. So, please, PLEASE, take car seat safety seriously.

The FB Group linked above is admin-ed by Certified Car Seat Technicians. They can give you advice on anything from a photo of the way you have your child buckled in, to feedback on a photo of your car seat installation, to the best seats for your vehicle when it’s time to add a new baby/car seat to the mix. 

Blaire just turned 4. She currently weighs 38lbs and is about 40″ tall. That makes her about 70 percentile for both height and weight. She has been using the Graco 4Ever Seat for the almost 2 years. Lucky for us, it supports extended rear-facing up until 40lbs and the child’s head must be at least 1″ below the handle on the headrest. So, we were able to keep Blaire rear-facing up until her 4th birthday. But, it was a close one, friends.

Knowing Blaire is average on the growth curve for her age, I’m not taking any chances of Ben growing out of rear-facing quickly. So, enter the Graco 4Ever Extend2Fit Platinum Car Seat! This sweet car seat will keep him safely rear-facing even longer than the traditional 4Ever seat. It’s safe for extended rear-facing until he’s 50lbs (his head must be 1″ below the handle on the headrest) which I’m hoping is his 4th birthday.

The 4Ever Extend2Fit Platinum Car Seat is special because it has EZ Tight LATCH. It’s SO easy to install and remove from the car. You can use the EZ LATCH with this car seat up until your child reaches 45 lbs. 

Graco Extend2Fit 4Ever Car Seat Graco Extend2Fit 4Ever Car Seat Graco Extend2Fit 4Ever Car Seat - Extended Rear-Facing Graco Extend2Fit 4Ever Car Seat Graco Extend2Fit 4Ever Car SeatWe love Graco and any carseat we have ever purchased has been Graco. They’re affordable, and most importantly, they are a brand we trust to keep our babies safe. Their seats have always held up well, which is especially important with a seat like the 4Ever, since we can use it for the next 10 years. 

This 4Ever Extend2Fit Platinum car seat is perfect for us. They are the seats we use in my car, which is where our children ride 99.9% of the time. (They usually spend less than an hour per week in Jason’s car, where they both have Graco 4Ever car seats.) It makes me so happy to know Graco takes the benefits of extended rear-facing seriously. They are doing their part to allow parents to keep their children rear-facing as long as possible.

I want to leave you with this, and please know I say this with love, and not judgement, because I know not all parents are interested in extended rear-facing.

Even if your child is already forward-facing, but they’re under the age of 4, but not exceeding the maximum height/weight for RF, it’s never too late to turn them back. Studies have found your child is 92% less likely to be seriously injured in a crash if they are rear-facing.

If you want more stats about extended rear-facing, including videos of crash simulations and photos to prove your child’s legs won’t be uncomfortable if they’re still 3-years-old and rear-facing, you can visit the Car Seat Lady’s article “5x Safer”.

As parents, we know it’s our job to keep our children safe. So, please know, you’re not alone when it comes to car seat safety. There are many resources out there. If you want links to more, please leave a comment, send me an email, or message me on Instagram.

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    • How many kids do you have? Which transition was the hardest? It may not be the traditional answer, but for me, becoming a mama to one was the hardest. I had NO CLUE what I was in for.
The mom guilt.
How long it would take to leave the house.
The sleepless nights.
Breastfeeding.
Losing myself in motherhood — feeling like I had to be with Blaire 24/7.
Adding Ben and now Sloane to our crew has been so much easier for me. It’s like they just fall in line with the crazy. 🤪 And I think being so much more confident in myself as a mom doesn’t hurt either. 💁🏼‍♀️ #motherhoodishard
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#motherhood #momofthree #momof3 #clickinmoms #momtog #thelovelysquares #happilytrista #blaireandben #blairebenandsloane
    • ice cream outside with two of my favorite people. when it’s only 70° outside you can actually eat your ice cream without it melting all over us... and by us I mean them. 👆🏻👆🏻 #blaireandben
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#2yearsold #5yearsold #momof3 #motherhoodintheraw #lifegivingsquares #petitejoy #motherhoodrising #ourcandidlife #uniteinmotherhood #mymamahood #seekthesimplicity #sharegood #joyfulmamas #documentlife #dailyparenting #momblogger #honestlymothering #therealparenthood  #thehappycapture #momsofinstagram #mytinymoments #thecreativecollective #realmotherhood #lifestyleblogger #stopdropandmom
    • Prepping for our third baby has been pretty easy so far. I guess when you have an older sister and brother, plus a mama who likes to hold on to everything from her babies, there isn’t a ton of shopping to do. The kids are having fun picking out little gifts to give baby sister in the hospital (something Blaire still talks about from when Ben was born), little toys here and there, PJs, and this @babyeinstein 4-in-1 Kickin Tunes Music & Language Discovery Gym at @target. I wasn’t joking when I said they wanted to test it out! #babyeinstein #ignitecuriosity #socialspotters #blaireandben #happilytrista
    • #ad I can’t believe this girl is heading off to kindergarten! With afternoon pre-k last year, we were lucky to not have to worry about the morning rush. So this year, our go-to is a waffle and a chocolate milk for the ride to school. Horizon® Shelf Stable Chocolate Milk is our favorite since we can easily grab it and go! Spoiler alert: she takes one in her lunch, too. Blaire is so excited, but little brother and I are sad to see her spend so much time away from us. But I am excited to be able to walk her to school and avoid the CRAZY drop-off and pick-up lines while the weather’s still nice, anyways. 
You can find @HorizonOrganic Chocolate Milk at @KrogerCo and you can even save $1 with this digital coupon (7/24/19 – 8/6/19). And you can stock up because Horizon Organic milk boxes are shelf-stable, meaning you can safely store them in the pantry. Shop now through the link in my bio. #blaireandben
    • Well we don’t have a Nordstrom near us, but we do have an Aldi. Most of their summer items are on clearance and we scored this sweet pool for $7. Winner, winner. 🦄☀️ #blaireandben
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#summer #momentsiwanttoremember #aldifinds #motherhood
    • This summer hasn’t really felt like summer yet. 🤨 So when we have an 85° day we make the most out of it with a trip to the pool! How’d you spend your Sunday Funday? #blaireandben
    • another day, another doctors appointment for someone in our crew. today it’s Ben. he was up overnight saying his ear hurt — a double ear infection for him. luckily the kid loves taking medicine and hasn’t let his ears get him down! as long as he’s up moving around they’re fine, but the second he lays down... 😭😭😭. hoping our poor buddy is feeling better tomorrow. do you feel like you need a frequent flier card for your pediatrician? just me? okay. #blaireandben #itsfinewerefine
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#uniteinmotherhood #motherhoodintheraw #momentsiwanttoremember #mybabies
    • When your brother is getting big but you still want to hold him... you gotta pinch his butt because he’s so wiggly. 😂😬😍 #blaireandben •
#petitejoys  #childhoodunplugged #letthembelittle #ohheymama #tagtheqc #mybeautifulmess #thehappynow  #thepursuitofjoyproject #thatsdarling #livethelittlethings #momentsiwanttoremember #everydaymoments #nothingisordinary #motherhoodrising
    • It is definitely bittersweet to leave the house where we brought both of these babies home. But we are excited for our next chapter as a family of five! #rainbowbaby #blaireandben
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#pregnancyannouncement #rainbowbabyannouncement #firsttrimester
    • Last night was our first night in the new house. 👏🏻 We still have lots of stuff to bring from the old house and then lots of cleaning over there before the final walk through and closing next Monday. Then we can focus on getting this house unpacked and organized. But first, I would like a nap. 😴 #blaireandben #happilytristahome
    • The snow that never ends. 🙄🥶 Walked out into the snow this afternoon and one kid loved it, the other not so much. “Wowwww! It’s like a wizard out here.” —Blaire 😂
“Yuck!” —Ben #blaireandben
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#bestofmom #momlifestyle #momlifeisthebestlife #motherhoodunplugged #mymotherhood #honestmotherhood #slowmotherhood #mymamahood #midwestblogger #eternalmotherhood #motherhoodintheraw #unitedinmotherhood #motherhoodrising #polarvortex