cornflake dreams.

3.05.2015

loving lately: Plucky Mustard Custom Onesies + a Giveaway.

Full Disclosure: I received a complimentary item from Plucky Mustard to review. As always, all thoughts and opinions are my own. Thank you for supporting brands that support Cornflake Dreams.

I discovered Plucky Mustard on Etsy a few months ago when I was shopping for baby clothes. Plucky Mustard makes custom hand-painted onesies and toddler tees -- you can specify the color and name or phrase. They also have adorable brother and sister sets, holiday prints, and onesies with Beatles lyrics -- my favorite is "here comes the sun!". Debra, the owner and designer, uses special non-toxic, water-based fabric paint to create the tees and onesies. The painted design will not bleed or run and the onesies do not require special washing instructions. I LOVE the ballet pink name heart print onesie Debra made for Violet. I've already washed and packed it in my hospital bag for the big day!
baby girl custom name / little darlin Beatles lyric / here comes the sun Beatles lyric / state love / littlest love / little baby / I'm here! / all you need is love beatles lyric / big sisterEnter to win a Plucky Mustard onesie -- you pick the print! These onesies would make a great baby shower gift! Please use the Rafflecopter widget below to enter. A winner will be emailed on Thursday, March 12, 2015. This giveaway open to U.S. residents.
Good Luck!
-xo-
Jillian

3.04.2015

bumpdate: 9 months.


How far along: I'm 38 weeks today! Now I'm just counting down the days until we get to meet Vi!

Size of the baby: According to the My Pregnancy app our baby is the length of a leek (roughly 19.5 inches long) and she weighs around 6.8 pounds.

Gender: little miss Violet Mae

How do you feel? Up until last week I was feeling great -- now I have lower back cramps and bump cramps (maybe Braxton Hicks Contractions?). I'm hoping this is a sign labor will start soon.

Eating/Cravings: Eating: I've been on a brunch kick lately -- I eat scrambled eggs all the time for lunch, so when I go out I want french toast and a little bit of whatever h is eating :) Craving: I'd love to have some spicy Indian food to get the labor party started. and 
I think I'm finally over my burgers and fries cravings....phew.

Miss anything? Sitting in the front seat of our car, long yoga workouts, not peeing all the time, and BLUE CHEESE.

General mood: EXCITED! Now that we're getting closer to the due date I keep thinking about how things will be when our baby is here!

Fears: I've been trying to stay optimistic and positive about labor -- but it still scares me. Bring on the epidural!

Sleep: I wake up a few times a night to pee and from back cramps but overall I'm still getting enough sleep.

Workouts: I'm still working out at least 5 times a week but I have been doing less yoga and more walking. I love love using my foam roller to roll out my sore muscles.

Things I am looking forward to: Meeting Violet and seeing her dad hold her :) !!

Best moment this month: Being totally surprised by h's co-workers with a baby shower lunch last week :) it was so thoughtful. And we met with a really wonderful pediatrician last night (check and check!)

Shout out to my baby daddy: Thank you H for taking this month's artsy fartsy bumpdate pic :) and for practicing swaddling techniques on our "baby" (we used a rolled up towel).

Maternity clothes: My leggings, tanks, tees, and cardigans are still on repeat. But I'm not going to lie I'm totally over wearing the same things all the time.

Purchased/ Currently in my shopping cart: Non-maternity items (WAHHOO!) I'm loving my jean jacket and I really want a new pair of black sandals and a post pregnancy body friendly swing tank top for Spring and Summer. I also want to buy a couple of storage bins and a
 lamp for the nursery
-xo-
Jillian

p.s. here's the rest of my bumpdate posts if you're interested: 5 months6 months, 7 months, and 8 months

3.03.2015

Peanut Butter Sriracha Cookies + a Giveaway.

Full Disclaimer: I received complimentary items from Peanut Butter & Co. to facilitate this post. As always, all thoughts and opinions are my own. Thank you for supporting brands that support Cornflake Dreams.

I was invited to participate in a mystery ingredient cooking challenge with Peanut Butter & Co. and they sent me a pretty tricky ingredient: SRIRACHA! My husband loves Sriracha -- he puts it on almost everything he eats: spaghetti, eggs, and pizza, but I have a pretty low spice tolerance. I found a few unique spicy peanut butter recipes online and I was tempted to make Asian noodles with spicy peanut butter sauce. In the end my sweet tooth won and I decided to make some peanut butter sriracha cookies.
I used my great grandma's recipe for peanut butter cookies and added a little Sriracha to a quarter of the dough (because let's be honest I didn't want to waste perfectly good cookie dough if the spicy cookie thing turned out to be a major flop!) H liked the cookies -- I thought they were pretty good (not too spicy) but I still prefer the classic peanut butter cookie recipe.



Ingredients:
1 3/4 cups Flour 
1 tsp Baking Soda
1/2 tsp Salt
1/2 cup Sugar
1/2 cup Brown Sugar
1/2 cup Shortening
1/2 cup Peanut Butter (I used 1/4 cup Smooth Operator Peanut Butter and 1/4 cup Mighty Maple Peanut Butter)
1 Egg
2 tbs Milk
1 tbs Vanilla
2.5 tbs Sriracha for a full batch -- I've also seen recipes that use up to 1/4 cup of Sriracha if you have a high spice tolerance (or if you're a chicken like me... try using 2 tsp Sriracha for 1/4 of the batch)

METHOD: 
Mix dry ingredients together, add wet ingredients and blend together with a hand mixer until the batter is smooth. Form small balls, roll in sugar, and press down with a fork to create a criss-cross pattern. Bake at 375-degrees for 8-10 minutes. Enjoy! 

Peanut Butter and Co. is giving away a jar of Smooth Operator Peanut Butter and Mighty Maple Peanut Butter so you can get baking :) Please use the Rafflecopter widget below to enter. A winner will be emailed on Tuesday, March 10, 2015. This giveaway open to U.S. residents.
Good Luck!
-xo-
Jillian

3.02.2015

weekend good things.

Happy Monday! Another weekend has flown by and with my 38-week mark almost here (CRAZY!) I'm officially on baby labor watch :) :)

Last Friday H's co-workers surprised us with a baby shower and lunch at California Dreaming. The baby shower was SO sweet and totally unexpected! It was the first time I met all of h's co-workers and we had a great time chatting about babies and travel. And I finally got my cheesecake fix! Later that night we went to the gym, I made some sriracha peanut butter cookies (stop by tomorrow for the recipe and a giveaway) and we watched a few episodes of House of Cards.

The next day we met up with some friends for brunch at Bull Street Gourmet and Market. I had the almond french toast -- it was crusted with chopped almonds and cornflakes and served with strawberries -- sooo delicious!! H ordered a Croque Madame sandwich -- toasted brioche with ham, gruyere cheese, creamy b├ęchamel sauce and a sunny side up egg -- I couldn't resist stealing a few bites :) It was one of the best brunches I've had in a long time and there was no wait for a table, which is pretty rare in Charleston! I can't wait to go back so I can try their lunch menu. After brunch we met with a potential pediatrician but unfortunately we weren't a fan. We got back to the house in time for H to watch a soccer game and I took a quick nap. We ended the night with more HOC (we only made it to episode 5, so no spoilers please!).

On Sunday we braved the rain and took a quick trip to the outlet mall. I found the cutest jean jacket on major sale and H bought some shoes and a jacket. Afterwards we went to the gym -- these days most of my workout consists of waddling around the track :) I finally finished packing my hospital bags that night and watched the Downton Abbey season finale (how is it already over?!).

How was your weekend?
-xo-
Jillian

p.s. there's one day left to enter the Gerard Yosca Singular Stack Bracelet Giveaway!

2.27.2015

five on friday.

Happy Friday! I'm linking up with Christina, April, Natasha, and Darci, here are five things on my mind:

image via
ONE: Thank you all sooo much for your supportive comments on my last post. I feel really good about our decision (especially after seeing this story - yikes!).
TWO: House of Cards is BACK! I know what I'm doing tonight... 
THREE: We're meeting up with some friends on Saturday for brunch at Bull Street Gourmet and Market -- I'm allll about the french toast lately (and they have croissants with Nutella...yes, please!)
FOUR: One of my favorite Chicago bloggers - Emily from Isn't That Charming just launched Wandeleur, a creative lifestyle website full of inspiring images and features -- check it out!
FIVE: There's a few days left to enter the Gerard Yosca singular stack bracelet giveaway

Have a great weekend!
-xo-
Jillian

2.25.2015

babies, blogging and privacy.

I've been thinking about writing this post for months, and now that I'm only three weeks away from my due date, it's time to hit publish. I have been blogging for over four years and I've loved sharing important milestones in my life -- our engagement, marriage, move across the country, and most recently my pregnancy. I was thrilled to find out I was pregnant and I wanted to share my journey through bumpdate posts and #babycornflake pics on Instagram.

However, I think it's important to stop and think about babies, blogging, and privacy. I grew up with a computer in our home but Facebook and Twitter didn't come around until I was in college. The world has changed a lot since I was little and now many parents share photos and videos of their kids on social media. Others go a step further and chronicle their kids lives through blogging as a way to connect with their family. I totally respect that and I LOVE to read "mommy" blogs and see photos of cute babies. In the end it's up to the parents and it's a very personal choice as to what they share. As a blogger I often put pressure on myself to share everything, but that doesn't mean I should have to.

After a long discussion with H we have decided that we'd like to keep most of Violet's life private. That means I won't be posting photos of her on my blog or public social media accounts. It wasn't an easy decision, but given H's career -- he is a psychiatrist and he often evaluates mentally unstable patients who are being held in jail or in prison-- it only makes sense for our family to make her privacy a priority. We'd also like to give her a childhood similar to our own -- where her photos are kept in albums at home and not made available to everyone on the internet.

I have no doubt that I'll still talk about Violet in blog posts -- she'll be a huge part of my life, so how couldn't I?! I also plan on sharing her favorite toys and clothes, her nursery (whenever it's completed), and my favorite maternity and postpartum items since I've found similar blog posts helpful as a first-time mom. But I am not going to post a birth story or monthly developmental updates. I hope you understand and respect my decision. If you have any questions please don't hesitate to leave a comment below or email me!

What do you think mamas? When it comes to your kids -- how do you decide what to share?
-xo-
Jillian

2.24.2015

Gerard Yosca Singular Stack Bracelet Giveaway.

Full Disclosure: I received complimentary items from Gerard Yosca to review. As always, all thoughts and opinions are my own. Thank you for supporting brands that support Cornflake Dreams.


As you know I'm a huge fan of Gerard Yosca jewelry. His collection of Singular Bracelets are some of my favorite pieces to wear everyday! The sleek and simple bracelets are made for stacking or can be worn alone. I love to layer my Flowerball Blossom Cuff, Two Cuff, and One Cuff bracelets together.


Gerard Yosca is generously giving away two Singular Stack Bracelets: the Five Cuff (with a triangle stone) and Two Cuff (with two round stones), so you can make your own Singular Bracelet stack! Please use the Rafflecopter widget below to enter. A winner will be emailed on Tuesday, March 3, 2015. This giveaway open to U.S. residents.
Good Luck!
-xo-
Jillian