Lots of updates!

I have been awful about posting on this blog and I apologize! I am going to try to get back into a regular habit of blogging each week, here and on my photography blog. Things seems like they were running at such a crazy pace for a while, working too much, too many projects with our yard, etc. I realized that months have gone by and I haven’t blogged over here at all. So here’s a recap of some highlights! I apologize they are all cell phone photos, but sometimes life gets busy and the best camera is the one you have with you. πŸ˜‰

In April, we took our son to Disneyland for the first time for his birthday. He had so much fun! He actually got tears in his eyes when he got to meet Mickey in person. πŸ™‚ He doesn’t look happy in the photo below, but it was the end of a very long day. πŸ™‚ I can’t wait to bring him back again!
FullSizeRender(1)

My husband and I went on a very long-overdue date night to the Magic Castle in Hollywood! When I lived in Hollywood, I always wanted to go but never got an invite. I was pretty excited. πŸ™‚ I know I don’t look excited below but were stuck in traffic for a while on the way there so I was a bit car-sick in the photo. πŸ™‚
FullSizeRender-3

I had two gallery shows recently for my photography, and my little man helped me prepare for the shows. Here we were in downtown L.A., picking up my fine art photo prints. πŸ™‚ Such a little tough guy!
IMG_1857

He also helped me out at a recent convention, passing out my business cards to any ladies with babies lol. The kid is amazingly perceptive about what I do and who my target clients would be!

IMG_1393

Little man also started soccer recently!
IMG_1965
I think E has grown tired of our co-sleeping way of life. He has started building his own little fort of pillows between the wall and our bed lol. We have been discussing transitioning him to sleeping in his own room at night soon.
FullSizeRender-4

We went for a movie night at the pier, and our little man astounded me when he grabbed my hand and started leading me elsewhere. When I asked where we were going, he pointed at a sign above a closed door that said “Fun Factory”, and said “fun!” He had never been to that arcade before but apparently recognized the word fun!

IMG_1607

Biggest news of all…we are expecting baby #2 in February! My pregnancies are never easy, and each has had their own set of unique challenges. This one has been no exception so far. I have been blogging about it on my separate pregnancy blog, so if you would like to follow along with more of the details, you can find that here.FullSizeRender

I’ll be posting some garden updates soon since I know it has been a while since I’ve shown any updates in that department, and I will have some special maternity fashion posts coming soon too! πŸ™‚

Advertisements

Butterfly Exhibit

Recently, we went to the butterfly exhibit at the Natural History Museum in downtown Los Angeles. E gets quite a few butterflies that come to his garden, and loves “talking” to them, so I figured he would be excited to see a whole exhibit of live butterflies. Sure enough, he chatted away to all of the butterflies in the exhibit. πŸ™‚

aliciainwonderlandblog1 aliciainwonderlandblog2 aliciainwonderlandblog3 aliciainwonderlandblog4 aliciainwonderlandblog5 aliciainwonderlandblog6 aliciainwonderlandblog7

The visit to the museum inspired a few changes that I implemented in E’s own garden, which I will post about soon!

Garden Reveal!

Our backyard remodel has been a major undertaking. Way bigger than we would have anticipated. It has taken so much longer than we had planned, and there are still a lot of last details left to finish. When I made over our front yard two years ago, everything went a lot faster since I didn’t have a child to take care of, and I didn’t have my mobility and pain problems. Those two new factors have made this project infinitely slower. I know a lot of people have been curious to see a reveal, so I wanted to post pictures of the progress so far. πŸ™‚

I hated the ugly retaining walls that go throughout our backyard, and I have been trying to convince my husband to let me paint them some bright colors ever since we moved in. Finally, I looked for some examples on Pinterest that were close enough to what I had in mind that helped me convince him that I should paint. E’s garden is so much more fun now that it is colorful. πŸ™‚ I have a really exciting project in mind for the planter above his garden…I can’t wait to get that installed too!

aliciainwonderlandblog8

I haven’t finished painting this area, but that will come soon enough. The table was an antique store find and actually came with four different chairs, but I wanted the set because I thought the chairs would be perfect around our firepit. The table was cute too, and got paired with four chairs that were a great thrift store find at $2 each!

The pink flowers in the top planter are one of the few that I did not plant (along with the roses that they are mixed in with). They were there from a previous owner, and are amazing. They are super low-maintenance, need almost no water, and reseed themselves each year. They are called a bunch of different names, but you can find them at Home Depot under the name Red Valerian. In the bottom row, I have our dwarf almond tree and kumquat tree, which I planted when we moved in. In between those, I planted more low water plants, lots of geraniums and Santa Barbara daisies.

aliciainwonderlandblog7

This is the pergola that my husband built at our old house! We actually had our small wedding reception under this pergola in our old backyard, so it is extra special. (We had two wedding days…the ceremony day that was moved up when we found out my grandma was dying and our originally planned date). The diagonal pieces needed to be replaced after the move, so my dad made these new ones for us! They still need to be painted but look great.

The pergola used to be our patio dining area at our old house, but now it is a play zone. πŸ™‚ Underneath the pergola is the artificial grass my husband installed (more info on that in a later post), and a nice play area for the little guy and his friends. Things are a little more put away than usual today since we are expecting rain, but this is where his bounce house/ball pit normally sits, and his trains are put away from the train table. We actually found the train table for free on Craigslist, but it needed some legs, which was an easy fix for my husband! It is one of E’s favorite things. πŸ™‚ I will post pictures of his bounce house/ball pit when I blog about his birthday party, but in the meantime, you can check it out here.
aliciainwonderlandblog6

This is the part of the garden where all the work really took place…I am going to post some wide angle overview pictures here and then go into more detail about all of the various projects and areas within the next few days!

aliciainwonderlandblog5
aliciainwonderlandblog4 aliciainwonderlandblog3 aliciainwonderlandblog2

Our to-do list for this project still includes installing new raised beds for veggies, completing the irrigation system (I am hand watering for now…not too bad since most of the plants have low water requirements), installing the shade fabric system that will be drawn or retracted over the entire garden, lighting, sound system, waterfall, and adding more decomposed granite as walkway.

We originally were going to put in pavers, stepping stones, bricks or gravel, but then I realized that the decomposed granite that we put down as an underlayer is much easier for me to walk on! I like how it looks and it is super cheap (you can often even find it for free!), and we just need a bit more to thicken it up.

Lots more details coming in the next few days!

Valentine’s Day at the Queen Mary with Ehrmann Mixim Launch Party

Last week for Valentine’s Day, we had the honor of attending the Ehrmann Mixim Greek Yogurt launch party on the Queen Mary in Long Beach, CA. The Queen Mary was transformed into the Love Boat for the event, all lit up in pink. After growing up in the Long Beach area, I have been to the Queen Mary many times in my life and I have never seen her look so beautiful as she looked all dressed up in pink!

FinalLoveBoatVectorLogo

BY0A1669

We started off the night in style on the pink carpet! So fun. πŸ™‚
1012561_10152015063057535_1289765099_n

Then we were brought up to the VIP lounge, where the tastings were held.

BY0A1707

BY0A1672

If you read my blog regularly, you know that I have had to unfortunately cut dairy out of my diet temporarily while I am breastfeeding our baby since he was having an allergic reaction to cow’s milk proteins, even via my milk. We are hoping that this will only be temporary! So, until I can have dairy again, my husband was more than happy to be my taste tester. πŸ™‚

BY0A1677
I actually remember that when we were on our vacation in Germany a few years ago, Ehrmann yogurts were part of our picnic lunches that we were packing up on most days (Ehrmann is a family owned company from Germany). It is so exciting to see them launch here in the U.S. My husband absolutely LOVED the Mixim yogurt! He said it was smooth and creamy, and not tart like some other Greek yogurts he has tried. We loved that there are two options for the toppings, each in their own individual compartments in the adorable heart shaped containers. I am allergic to artificial food dyes, so I was really happy that there are no dyes in any of the toppings! Before our son was born, I used to get so frustrated with constantly checking for artificial dyes in yogurt ingredients. Thanks for keeping things natural and healthy, Ehrmann!

For any fellow photographers who may be reading this…don’t freak out that something is wrong with the white balance of my photos. πŸ™‚ The VIP lounge was all lit up with these pink lights, making it fun and festive.

BY0A1678BY0A1906

BY0A1682BY0A1684

BY0A1687

BY0A1696

BY0A1702

BY0A1705

BY0A1709

BY0A1714

BY0A1721

Later in the evening, Ehrmann made a donation to the Children’s Heart Foundation, $1 for every photo that was uploaded to social media with the hashtag #miximlove. I loved that they picked a great charity to help with this event!

BY0A1737

My silly guys had fun playing around with the Mixim staff with the lit up heart balloons! πŸ™‚
BY0A1750

BY0A1749

And then, the cutest thing happened! Recently, I did a birthday photoshoot for this adorable little baby girl, who is the daughter of my good friend. My baby boy E came along for the photoshoot and fell madly in love with the little girl that day, as you can see below (more at www.apluscphotography.com). πŸ™‚

1888988_760057844006041_1503882951_o

My friend saw my posts that we would be attending and told me that they were going to come to the party as well. When I saw how many people were at the party, I thought there was no way that E was going to find his new little girlfriend for his first Valentine’s date. As luck would have it, as soon as we went down on the main deck for the Guinness World Record event, we ran into our friends! E was pretty excited that he got to spend Valentine’s Day with his new girlfriend. πŸ™‚

BY0A1755

BY0A1777

E was not too thrilled that she kept trying to steal his hat. He had to explain to her that they aren’t married yet so the whole “what’s mine is yours” thing doesn’t quite apply yet. πŸ˜‰

BY0A1778

BY0A1780

BY0A1791

All of the couples at the event participated in a new Guinness World Record, of the most couples simultaneously feeding each other. πŸ™‚ It was such a fun thing to participate in!

After the tasting, a Journey cover band, DSB, played. The music was great and some amazing fireworks followed the concert.

BY0A1809

BY0A1828

BY0A1850

BY0A1853

E was in awe of the heart shaped fireworks. πŸ™‚

BY0A1858

BY0A1811

BY0A1877

BY0A1885

BY0A1896

The party was so much fun! Definitely the best Valentine’s Day I have ever had. I was so happy that I got to go to such a fun event with my two handsome dates. The fireworks show even finished with my favorite song by Heart. πŸ™‚

After the party was over, we decided to walk around the ship a bit. E is quite a night owl like his parents. The boys had fun playing some video games.

BY0A1928

BY0A1946

BY0A1938

Then they goofed around a bit inside a giant bell on the ship. πŸ™‚

BY0A1936

Definitely a night to remember!
BY0A1950

Thanks so much for having us, Ehrmann! I can’t wait to be able to eat dairy again! Ehrmann Mixim’s six flavor combos can be found now in California, Arizona and Nevada in retailers such as Albertsons, Bashas and Safeway. For more information on Mixim, visit the Ehrmann website: http://www.ehrmann-usa.com/. You can also find them at the following links!
β€’ Ehrmann MIXIM Love Boat Event Page: http://bit.ly/1f8bgQC
β€’ Twitter: https://twitter.com/EhrmannUSA
β€’ Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/EhrmannUSA
β€’ Pinterest:Β  http://www.pinterest.com/ehrmannusa/
β€’ Instagram: http://instagram.com/ehrmannusa/
β€’ Valentine’s Day Sweepstakes:Β  http://tinyurl.com/psq3b87

Ehrmann_Packaging_17

*This is a sponsored post.

Our Little Fishie

Just a bit of end of summer fun! Little E loves swimming! We have taken him swimming a few times in the ocean and at Grandma & Grandpa’s house. I found this little baby floating raft that he loves since it gives him a bit of independence (and mom a bit of peace of mind). He loves the salt water in Grandma and Grandpa’s pool and likes to lick his hands while he is swimming (silly boy!). I am a fan of the salt water pool since I don’t have to worry about subjecting him to tons of harsh chemicals. Swimming with Daddy & Grandpa is one of his new favorite activities. πŸ™‚

BY0A2316 BY0A2283 BY0A2286 BY0A2288 BY0A2300 BY0A2303

What I Wore Sunday: Finally a Dress Again!

I was super excited about this simple outfit for a few reasons. The first and biggest reason (for me anyway) was that I am finally feeling stable enough again to start wearing some wedge heels! Heels are one of my favorite things, and having my pelvic bones so weak and painful for so long meant that I have had to only wear flats for quite some time now. I am still not pain free, and not stable enough to wear a pair of regular heels yet, but this was an exciting improvement for me. πŸ™‚

I also have been having a really hard time finding any dresses that look good on my figure and are breastfeeding friendly, without being really low cut. I have searched high and low and finally found a dress I liked for wearing to church once in a while. It was a hard process. Most button down shirt dresses are not flattering on me, I can’t do strapless comfortably, and some scoop neck dresses that may be breastfeeding friendly are too low cut for my taste. It is surprisingly difficult to find a good wrap dress lately!

We went by the pier after church on Sunday to look at getting some fish for dinner, and were hoping baby E would enjoy his first time seeing the ocean. Unfortunately, he was too sleepy to pay attention to his surroundings!

Sunglasses: Marc by Marc Jacobs
Purse: Marc by Marc Jacobs
Dress: TJ Maxx
Shoes: a store in “the alley” in downtown Los Angeles

E is wearing an outfit from F.A.O. Schwarz.

Alicia in Wonderland Blog Alicia in Wonderland BlogAlicia in Wonderland Blog

We Are Currently Experiencing Technical Difficulties….

BY0A9682

The past week has been pretty frustrating. It started with an incredibly disappointing loss of photos on one of my memory cards. The weekend before this past one, we had a pretty mellow weekend, running errands on Saturday and relaxing at home before we went to evening mass on Sunday. Nothing too exciting, but we did get some cute pictures of our outfits and some amazing food that I cooked up. Last week when I went to offload the pictures off my memory card, they disappeared as soon as I put the memory card into the laptop. I did everything I could think of, including running recovery software, and nothing worked. Those pictures are gone forever. I was so sad because E had been making some particularly cute faces in some of them! I usually reformat my memory cards periodically to prevent this type of thing from happening, but I guess since I had not done that since E has been born, the cards were overdue. Very sad and disappointing.

This past weekend, my husband had the fun task of working on our main bathroom, which suddenly had developed a bunch of problems within the past week. The toilet stopped flushing regularly, the sink was leaking from the pipe (and therefore starting to rot the vanity and cause mold to grow), the sink was also draining very slowly, and the shower backed up and stopped draining. By Sunday morning, he still hadn’t gotten the shower to drain yet, so I took a shower in our guest bath. After I finished, I went into the front yard to turn on the sprinklers while I got ready to go to church, and noticed that there was water pouring out of the side of the house where the guest bathroom is located.

We initially thought there must be a clog in the main line, but it turns out that they were all separate problems, totally non-related. The timing was crazy! My husband was able to get the leak in the drain in the guest bathroom shower repaired, and after a lot of work, he got our main shower draining again. The toilet and the sink still need work, so it looks like that is how we will be spending our upcoming holiday weekend. We were originally planning to leave that bathroom alone until after we are finished with the whole having babies thing since it is handicapped friendly, and it came in very handy during my pregnancy and postpartum recovery period. We have a few things planned for it that we will do in stages, hopefully getting the most urgent things completed this coming weekend!

So, there may be a shortage of outfit posts for a little bit, since we don’t look the most photogenic while we are running around stressed out and trying to help with an unpleasant project. πŸ™‚ Hopefully once the main bathroom is functional again, we can finish up some of the smaller projects that have been put off for a long time, like finishing the trim work in the guest bathroom and the kitchen!