A Pink Birthday Party

Our biggest girl turned three! 

For weeks leading up to her birthday, the only thing she asked us for a pink birthday party – so we delivered 😉 We started the morning with a pink breakfast – strawberry banana smoothies, cinnamon rolls (with pink icing for the birthday girl), fruit, bacon and eggs. Her presents were wrapped in pink paper – one of which was a pink bathing suit to wear to her party at the beach. 

We met friends at the beach and enjoyed each other’s company, pizza and birthday cake. (and the unexpectedly cool weather was very much enjoyed by this heavily pregnant mama)

Simple was the name of the game this year. No Pinterest-worthy crafts were made. I used artificial flowers on our breakfast table. The cinnamon rolls came from a can. We had pizza delivered to the beach. We ordered her cake from Safeway. I brought Lyla with me to Party City to buy her party favors and I let her choose the cheesiest pink & purple leis and plastic birthday crown.

She was happy, we were happy, it was a great day all around. 


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Christmas Tea Party

christmas tea party

Little girls love their tea parties, don’t they? Lyla definitely does and after having countless tea parties with her stuffed animals and Dad, I decided it was time to host Lyla’s first “real” tea party. 

We invited a few of her little girlfriends and their mamas over for a Christmas Tea Party at our home yesterday. We set our dining room table for the girls. Each place setting had a sugar cookie for decorating, a candy cane and a festive hair bow to take home. The girls also had a plate of PB&J tea sandwiches and a pot of tea Capri Sun.

christmas tea partychristmas tea partychristmas tea party

Lyla was so patient while we set everything up. She loves tea parties and she loves Christmas, so the table was very tempting but she left everything as it was until her friends arrived. I was impressed. 

christmas tea party

I was just as excited to have my friends over as Lyla was. I set out my tea set as well as a spread of tea sandwiches – ham, apple and brie and the classic cucumber cream cheese – as well as some cranberry orange scones. 

christmas tea party

Right on time, all of the little girls showed up in their Christmas dresses. They all looked so cute. A lot of the moms dressed up too which was fun. I think us stay at home moms appreciate an excuse to get dressed in something other than sweats once in a while 😉

christmas tea party

^ aren’t they the sweetest? I love that the moms even dressed up the little sisters 🙂

christmas tea partychristmas tea party

It is so sweet to watch Lyla grow and develop friendships. We really had a great time and are already looking forward to hosting another next Christmas and making this a tradition. 

What is your favorite Christmas tradition?

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Happy Birthday, Simon

One year ago, after a quick Thanksgiving lunch at auntie’s, we checked into the hospital. Later that night, we welcomed our sweet Simon Earl into our world. 

Just like when Lyla turned one, I am blown away by how fast a year can pass. How quickly they transform from this…

Simon Earl Byrd

…to this…


Our little “bubs” has rounded out our family in the most perfect way. His sweet disposition almost immediately put to rest all of the fears and anxiety that I had about adding another baby to the mix. 

From the get-go he showed us that the old saying “boys are wired different than girls” is SO true. I am constantly amazed at how different the two of them are from the way that they play with their toys to their physical and mental development. 

Mister Simon is an explorer. He is so curious about his world and spends lots of time everyday examining his surroundings. 


He loves us all but Daddy is a clear favorite. 

Simon can give kisses and high fives. He also says “hot”

He scoots around and gets where he needs to be. Just before we put him to bed last night decided to stand up and play with a toy unassisted. 

He has the cheesiest, most contagious smile. 


Simon loves to play with his sister. Until she takes a toy from him (which is almost always, we’re working on it). He fights back by pulling her hair. 

He is a champion sleeper at night. Naps are a different story. 

Our boy scoots toy trains and cars around the house making the cutest little motor noise you’ll ever hear. And he loves groovin’ to music. Doesn’t matter which kind. 


He is a nature boy. Has loved looking at trees since our trip to Michigan this summer and still points them out on walks and hikes. 

He is also a sports guy. Give him a ball, throw the King’s game on TV and he is good to go. 

Simon is so easy going and is a great sport about being tagged along on Lyla’s playdates and such. 


My sweet boy, 

I am so thankful that God put you in our lives. You have already brought so much happiness to the world in this short year. Being at your side while you learn and grow is an amazing gift. I love you “bubs”. Happy first birthday!


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Cake and Ice Cream Party

It’s hard to believe that Lyla is turning two this week. Time is moving way too fast – but you know that. What you might not know is that we celebrated over the weekend.

We kept things simple and invited a bunch of Lyla’s little friends over for some cake and ice cream and then sent them all into a bounce house in the backyard. Basically, we loaded them up with sugar and let them burn it off. It was perfect!

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I picked up the tablecloth, cake stand and Lyla’s cute little leggings from Target. I ordered her balloons from Etsy and my super talented friend, Charron, made the cake topper. I would have liked to make all of the decorations but, really, aintnobodygottimeforthat. I did, however, make some fun ice cream cone garland. #DIYerforlife

It’s so fun to see Lyla building relationships with other children. She has such a sweet group of friends (and their parents rock too). We had a ton of fun and are so thankful for everyone who came to celebrate our two year old with us. 

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Star Wars™ Viewing Party

This shop has been compensated by Collective Bias, Inc. and its advertiser. All opinions are mine alone. #AwakenYourTastebuds #CollectiveBias

starwarsviewingpartyGrowing up, I was never a big Star Wars™ fan. (gasp, I know) I do remember seeing Star Wars Episode I: The Phantom Menace in theaters but that’s pretty much where my exposure to the franchise ended. My husband, however, has always loved the whole series and has brought me to the dark side converted me into a fan. 


Alex has been sharing his excitement for the series with me by showing me all of the old movies. Of course, with two little ones keeping us busy (and a certain someone who has a tendency to fall asleep anytime a movie comes on at home…hint: it’s me), watching all of the movies is a slow (but fun) process.

We still have a few movies to go, and with not much time until the new movie comes out, we are going to have to marathon it if we want to catch up. So, instead of our usual stay-up-late-after-the-babies-go-to-sleep routine, I decided to set up a movie marathon station in our living room stocked with breakfast goodies so we can get a nice early start on our movie-watching.  

I found everything I needed to set up my Star Wars viewing party at Walmart. Since our party is going to start bright and early, I picked up some breakfast essentials to awaken our tastebuds: a few boxes of General Mills cereal and a fun box of Star Wars™ Go-Gurt.


I also picked up some [Death Star] donut holes and [Princess Leia] cinnamon buns to add to our spread. 

Because we were going to be in it for the long haul, I wanted to make sure we were extra comfortable in the living room with no reason to get up for anything. Our TV sits on top of a big bookshelf, which I decided would be a perfect party headquarters. 



I started by pulling everything off of the shelves and then lining the insides of each shelf with black poster paper. Then, I filled the shelf with all of our delicious goodies and some pillows and blankets for easy access. 

As a special treat, I made some frozen banana light sabers. Want to make your own? Here’s how:

  1. Peel and slice a banana into thirds
  2. Cover banana in yogurt
  3. Roll banana in cereal of your choice
  4. Place banana on popsicle sticks
  5. Place light sabers onto plate, cover lightly with saran wrap and place in freezer until yogurt hardens
  6. Remove from freezer, serve and enjoy!



I love that this franchise is making a comeback. It’s so fun to see fans of the originals share their excitement with Star Wars™ newbies like me. Make sure you check out all the different ways you can #AwakenYourTastebuds here!

Will you be seeing the new movie opening weekend? Which Star Wars movie is your favorite? Let me know in the comments below! 

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12 Days of Christmas Cookies: Butter Pecan Cookie

Bust out those aprons – it’s cookie time! Between now and Christmas, I’ll be sharing 12 delicious cookie recipes for you to try. Share some with your neighbors, bring some to a cookie swap party, or keep them all for yourself. I won’t tell anyone. Promise. 
Butter Pecan Cookie Recipe

My contribution to our Thanksgiving meal this year was a big platter of cookies. I whipped up a few batches of these butter pecan cookies to add to the spread and, on the drive over, was instructed by Alex and my brother that we weren’t going to tell people how good these were so that there would be more for them. How’s that for holiday spirit? 😉

Of course, I caved as soon as someone asked me which one was best. Typical Natasha. 

butter pecan cookies

butter pecan cookies

We never got to see which cookie was the official crowd favorite since we had to end up leaving for the hospital but, I can tell you that at least half of the butter pecan cookies were gone before the turkey was out of the oven.

Just sayin’. 

butter pecan cookies

Butter Pecan Cookies
Yields 24
Soft, chewy and buttery cookie sure to be a crowd pleaser
Write a review
Prep Time
3 hr 30 min
Cook Time
10 min
Total Time
3 hr 40 min
Prep Time
3 hr 30 min
Cook Time
10 min
Total Time
3 hr 40 min
  1. 2 cups chopped pecans
  2. 1 cup unsalted butter (room temperature)
  3. 1/2 cup granulated sugar
  4. 1 cup packed brown sugar
  5. 2 large eggs (room temperature)
  6. 2 tsp vanilla extract
  7. 2 1/2 cups flour
  8. 1 tsp cornstarch
  9. 1 tsp baking soda
  10. 1/2 tsp salt
  1. Preheat oven to 350
  2. Place pecans on baking sheet lined with parchment paper and toast in oven for 5 minutes
  3. In bowl of stand mixer fitted with paddle attachment (or in large bowl with hand-held mixer), beat the butter until smooth (approx. 1 minute)
  4. Add both sugars to bowl and beat until light and fluffy
  5. Beat in eggs and vanilla on high speed
  6. In separate bowl, mix together dry ingredients
  7. Slowly add dry ingredients to wet mixture until well combined
  8. Add pecans and mix an addition 5-10 seconds until incorporated
  9. Cover with foil or plastic wrap and chill in the fridge for 3 hours
  10. Remove dough from fridge and allow 15-20 minutes for it to warm slightly
  11. Roll dough into 1 inch balls and place on baking sheet lined with parchment paper
  12. Bake in preheated oven for 10-11 minutes
  13. Allow to cool on cookie sheet approx. 5 minutes before transferring to cooling rack
  1. For an extra sparkle and a little added sweetness, roll the dough in granulated sugar before placing on baking sheet!
Adapted from Sally's Baking Addiction
BRINGING UP BYRDS http://www.natashabyrd.com/
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Four Year Anniversary

Today, we have been married for 4 years. 

Today, we celebrate 208 weeks of laughter. 

Today, we celebrate 1,461 days of partnership. 

Today, we celebrate 35,064 hours of unconditional love and support. 

Today, we celebrate 2,103,840 minutes of us. 

Today, I celebrate the best 126,230,400 seconds of my life.  

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Thanks for doing life with me, babe. I love you. 


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