Leighton’s Elmo + Abby Birthday Party

If you would have told me a year ago that I would be having a character themed birthday party, I would have laughed in your face. Buttttt never say never, because when you have kids and they love something it’s too fun to indulge in it with them.

I’m pretty sure most of us know who Elmo is (the lovable monster from Sesame Street), but in case you don’t have a toddler at home Abby is a newer addition to the street. She’s a little purple fairy and Leighton has always had a soft spot for her. In fact, an Abby doll was her gift from Houston at the hospital.

She LOVES her Elmo and Abby stuffed animals and treats them like her own babies. They go for walks in the pram, have breakfast in their high chair and even get baths in her kitchen sink. So when it came time to plan her 2nd birthday, I knew exactly what to do. Although, the word “planning” might be used loosely because when you are in the newborn sleep deprived fog, you don’t really have the brain power to get too creative.

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Leighton {Two Years Old}

24 months of this wild haired, sassy, little lady. It’s hard to believe she has only been in our lives for two years, because she is such a big part of our family.

Leighton at two years old is absolutely hilarious. She picks up on EVERYTHING. Seriously, everything. You can’t do or say anything that you don’t want repeated. She has been known the mimic us, inflection and all. People stop me all the time to say how cute she is, but people that are around her for longer than a few minutes always have to comment on her personality and sass. Continue reading

Leighton {21 Months}

I started typing up this post before Houston was born and updated it not long after. Well, Leighton is now over 22 months and I’m finally hitting publish.

One of the first things I did after taking the pregnancy test this go around was do the math to see how old Leighton was going to be when the baby was born. 21 months. That seemed so far away at the time. That time is here, and now our chubby, little one year old is only a few months from two.

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Day in the Life {Stay at Home Mom of 1 Edition}

Hi friends!

I’m sure I am not the only one who has an interest in reading about other people’s routines and daily schedules. I love reading other day in the life posts on blogs, especially when they are in similar stages of life.

This is my third one of these posts (first was when I was pregnant and working full time, second was a guest post here when Leighton was only 6 weeks old and the last one was back in November), and they are always so fun to write.

I’m starting to get quite emotional over the thought of our little routines changing soon. Leighton and I are both creatures of habit and are in a nice little pattern of activities. I know we will get into a new routine once the baby is here and things are more settled, but I wanted to document one of our typical days before everything changes.

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Leighton {18 Months}

Hi friends! I haven’t been doing monthly updates since Leighton turned one, so I figured she was due a post of her own since she’s now a year and a half (how on earth?!).

We had her 18 month appointment yesterday, which she was not a fan of. She’s 24.9lbs/11.3kg (84% for weight) and 81cm/31in (54% for height). She cried more when the dr tried to weigh her than when she got her two shots. Once she got her first lollipop she was all smiles for the nurse. Continue reading

Our Family Photos 2017

I haven’t been too shy sharing many of our family photos we took back in November. For obvious reasons, I was quite selective on which ones I was showing for a while. Now I assume that you all want to see all 90+ pictures from the day, right?

Just kidding, but I did want to share my favorites. I had such a hard time choosing, so there are quite a few.


I met our photographer, Jana, through my friend Lindsay. They are friends from church and she has taken all of their family and newborn photos. Jana and her husband, Matt, both have full time careers outside of photography and photograph weddings and families on the side.

Our shoot was originally scheduled for the previous Saturday, but a torrential downpour changed our plans. I am so glad it did because the following Sunday afternoon was absolutely gorgeous.

I’m not going to lie, I wasn’t too optimistic at first. Leighton decided she didn’t want to have her afternoon nap (after a busy day) and my allergies were killing me, so I was moments away from a breakdown thinking our photos would be ruined. When we got to the parkland to meet Jana and Matt, I immediately felt more at ease. They were the sweetest couple ever and they had Leighton smiling and laughing right away.

Looking for her raisins we were hiding in Trav’s pocket.

It was such a comfortable session and I feel like you can tell that by looking at the pictures. I hope you enjoy them as much as I do!

Also, I still need to choose which ones to print, so tell me your favorites!

Leighton wanted to crash the bump pictures. Pretty sure it is just the beginning of her being jealous of her future sibling.

After almost an hour, Leighton kept saying “sleepy” and rubbing our eyes for us. She isn’t normally too affectionate, but she was wanting all of the cuddles and we weren’t complaining.

But seriously, how cute is my husband?

And that’s a wrap! I can’t believe the next time we have photos taken there will be a fourth subject!

Day in the Life {Stay at Home Mom Edition}

Hi friends! These are always my favorite posts to read on other blogs and the last time I did a day in the life post I was pregnant and still teaching. Well, a year and a half later things sure have changed.

Now I am a full time stay at home mom and Leighton is an active toddler. I decided to document last Tuesday since it was going to be a pretty standard day for us. So here goes a day in my life…

It’s 6am and time to rise and shine! Travis is already ready for work and when I checked the monitor Leighton was waking up, so he went in to get her up and changed while I sleepily pulled myself out of bed and got dressed. At least it’s a beautiful day in Brisbane!

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Life Lately: November

Hello there, remember me? I used to blog here regularly? Well I’m back!

Life has been a bit busy lately and unfortunately this space has been on the back burner, but I’m back in business! Here’s what has been going on at The Alkeks…


Yes, it has been that long since I have blogged. Last year Leighton was only a couple months old and we were in Sydney getting her citizenship, so we didn’t do anything. This year I knew I wanted to get her in a costume. Halloween has only more recently grown in popularity over here, but it is still nothing compared to the US. I threw together a quick DIY puppy dog costume for Leighton because she is obsessed with her stuffed dog, Ba. We took the ferry across the river to our current neighborhood (we hadn’t moved yet) and went to a fun Halloween festival at the park with some of our friends.

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Life Lately

Hi friends!

Hope you enjoyed Alex’s guest post earlier this week. It’s been a little while since I have done an update on what is going on around here, so I figured today would be a good day for that.

Riverfire 2017

Two weeks ago we celebrated our 4th Riverfire in Brisbane. Every year at the end of September to cap off the month long Brisbane Festival, the city puts on a massive fireworks show in two spots over the river. One of the spots in over the Story Bridge. The show starts off with different fighter pilots doing tricks and then continues on with the biggest display of fireworks I have ever seen. The trick every year is finding the best vantage point. People pay top dollar to book in at riverside restaurants or even take party boats down the river to get a good view. This year we got really lucky and one of my friends just moved into a house right by the Story Bridge. We went over that afternoon and enjoyed food and drinks in their backyard before watching the show.

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Leighton’s First Birthday Party

I promise this is my last birthday related post, but hey your first child only turns one once! Leighton was born on a Friday, so we lucked out and were able to have her birthday party on her actual birthday, August 5th.

In Australia it’s pretty much a given that most celebrations take place with a bbq at the park, so that is what we chose to do to celebrate our Aussie born child. Luckily, the winter weather in Brisbane is pretty much perfection for a park party.

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