Q&A

Q&A: Life-Changing Stain Remover, Patio Update, When it Got Easier with Two Kids, and Link Requests

Can you please share your stain remover again? 

Of course! Here it is. If you purchase a starter kit (highly recommend it!) and use the code MOSS along with this link, you’ll get 15% off. The all purpose cleaner is what activates the oxygen boost so you really do want both. I add a scoop of the oxygen boost into our laundry but also use it to pretreat stains. Just put it directly on the stain, spray with all purpose cleaner to activate, and let it sit for 15 minutes. The stain remover saved our outdoor pillows and chairs, and cleaned our shower floor grout. I tried everything – scrubbing and steaming – it just wouldn’t get better. Then I tried the oxygen booster and what a difference! I can’t believe how gross it was and am embarrassed to share these photos again but the after is so much better. Going to try one more round to really brighten it. This isn’t sponsored but I do get a small % of each sale. 

New patio furniture details? 

We ordered this collection. Since we couldn’t find a table and coffee table that we liked enough to go with our old collection and we wanted more seating (we added 2 ottomans) we ended up ordering a new complete set. It was our we aren’t traveling or going anywhere/mother’s day/father’s day/Christmas gifts to ourselves. 

Do you have a favorite kitchen floor mat? 

We had a vintage rug in the kitchen but moved it to our entry, so we don’t have anything right now, but I’m officially on the hunt. Here are a few things I’m considering. 

Jute Rug

Not ideal for stains and probably not the cushiest but so clean and simple.
Shop now

Standing Mat

Alternatively, this is very cushy and wipes clean.
Shop now

Cute and easy to clean runner for the kitchen? 

The standing mat (linked above) is available in a runner but I really like outdoor rugs as kitchen rugs, too. They’re ideal for high traffic areas. 

Can you link your rug?

The rug I shared is from Linda’s Barn. She has the most incredible selection of vintage rugs! 

What stroller would you register for for baby #2? VISTA or Valco? 

Valco, hands-down. Love the VISTA but the valco is easier to use, smaller footprint, and the canopies offer full-coverage which is a must for us with Margot’s treatment since the meds make her skin sensitive to the sun. I am diligent with sunscreen but prefer more coverage. Guess a stroller recap blog post is coming soon(ish).

What do you use for a diaper bag? 

I just use a tote and the girls each have a little insert that goes inside for their stuff, then another insert for snacks. Feels easier at this point, but the Mina Baie is great, too, especially with the baby. We don’t go out much and the girls need way less (Margot brings a cup of water, that’s it) so it feels less necessary. 

What color is your nugget? 

Koala (grey). I love this thing! Our PT came by last week for a follow-up and said how great it was for practicing jumping and climbing – she was so impressed and showed us some great things to do with Margot. I really liked daybreak (blue/grey) too but figured grey would work with everything. 

What outdoor movie screen did you order? 

I have not tried it yet so I cannot say anything about the quality, but here it is. It’s on sale for $100 and has great reviews. Still need to do some research and find a reasonable projector. 

Your living room ottoman. 

Here you go. We love it – so soft, easy to move, and safe for babies and toddlers. 

Recommendation for a baby proofing company in Chicago? 

Safety Matters did a great job. They listed off every possible thing that could be dangerous and I decided against gating our fireplace and peloton but had them do all our baby gates, latch all our cabinets, and attach all our furniture to the wall. I’m actually having them come back to anchor Kate’s dresser and a new shelf in the basement to the wall. 

Margot’s mattress? 

 A friend I trust recommended 5 Little Monkeys so I ordered vs doing my own research (that’s the way to do it, right?) and it’s fantastic. So, so comfortable! I’d know since I sleep in there with Margot every so often. I love it! 

Favorite toys for 2 year olds? 

Gold frames! And how to find a realtor in a new city. 

Framed and Matted has a great gold frame that you can order in any size. And I’ve never had to find a realtor since I married one. You could try that? 😉 

Favorite toys for 2 year olds? 

I wrote a blog post on this. The only thing I’d skip is an easel because they take up a ton of space and aren’t necessary. I prefer our art table. She actually still loves everything else. And to save some money, make your own sensory clay kits. DIY is not my thing and they were really easy to make. 

Favorite kids books at the moment? 

Blog post coming soon but since it could take a few weeks, I will say that everyone should have Be Kind and Odd Dog Out. Support your local bookstore and call the to see if they have either one (or both) in stock.

Peloton desk? 

I linked it under “wellness” in my shop. I don’t use it that often since I haven’t been using the peloton that often but will get back to it once our nanny comes back. Need to update that shop category a bit, too. 

Is your guest bathroom wallpaper waterproof? How does it hold up with steam? 

It’s the girls’ bathroom and they don’t take long, hot showers so there haven’t been any issues. 

Can you switch out the photographs in the triptych frames?

Yes. The frames came with nothing in them so I’ll be able to update whenever we take new family photos. 

When does it become easier with two kids? 7 week old and 3 year old. Feeling spread thin. 

It’s so hard, isn’t it? Doable but truly nonstop and exhausting. I actually just talked about this on instagram the other day. Honest answer is it just started to feel easier now and Kate is 14 months. That’s not to say it wasn’t so much better when she was 6, 8, 10 etc. months because itw was, but I started to feel like I had this and was good at it fairly recently.

It’s just so annoying working around naps and babies are really needy and not that exciting. Don’t get me wrong – they are sweet and I absolutely love them. Kate is a total dream and I know I’ll miss how little she is, but it’s so much more fun when they’re little people who do things. I can now do dinner and bedtime alone and it’s a lot but feels completely manageable. Margot is also at an age where she can play independently or watch a show while I’m putting Kate down (she’s so good and does exactly what I ask, and all our furniture is bolted to the wall so it feels safe). Babies are just really hard and require so much. Toddlers can play independently and as Kate gets older she and Margot will be able to play together. 

You’ve talked about your experience moving to Chicago. Based on Chicago’s covid response and your experience living there, is it a place you’d recommend to someone looking to move and raise a family? 

Chicago’s covid response doesn’t really have anything to do with why I’d recommend living here or not. I’d say gun violence and weather are enough of a reason for me want to leave. We don’t actually have plans to leave but if Margot wasn’t in treatment and we could afford a house in Santa Barbara, we’d probably move there tomorrow. It really depends on what you want day-to-day. I’m so over the long winters and would prefer somewhere with more moderate weather. I miss mountains and would love to live somewhere a bit more walkable. 

At what age did you feel like you knew who you were/what your style was? 

I think I had a somewhat decent idea of who I was by the time I met Conor (at 33) but didn’t have the confidence to always act on it until my 30s. I’ll try to make sense of that. It’s so hard when you’re single because there’s this pressure to go out, be social, and do things, but I didn’t always enjoy that (bars just aren’t my favorite thing) so felt like things didn’t align. I’m such a closeted introvert – crowds, parties, bars, events…not for me. But get togethers with 1-3 friends where we can have real conversations? Love that. I went out a lot when I first moved to Chicago at 28, but I was on my own for the first time in a long time and just finding myself. I was also working round the clock to try to get by and also to prove myself to I’m not sure who – validating a strange career was something, and not feeling respected was a lot for me. Now, I don’t care what people think of my career. It’s so freeing. Right now, I honestly feel so fortunate that I worked hard to get to a point where I can afford to slow down. There’s also a lot of privilege there because I was in a position to make certain (good) decisions to get to where I am – have to acknowledge that. Longest answer ever but I’d say I knew who I was but didn’t get to live as my true, confident self until my mid-late 30s.  

On to my style. I spent my late 20s-early 30s trying to find it. Experimented with bright colors and even some sequins – it wasn’t good. 😂 I think I thought I had it 5 years ago but it really evolved in my mid-late 30s. I have a fairly decent sense of what I like now, but who knows? It could change. 

How do you keep your jute rugs clean? 

We have had really good luck with our jute, and I once spilled a cup of coffee on it. Folex got it right out, and other than vacuuming, we’ve gotten lucky – no one else in our family has tried to damage the rug like I did. 

Do you nap or are you productive during the girls rest times? 

It is extremely rare that the girls rest at the same time, but if/when that does magically happen I usually use that time to relax since it’s so rare. I don’t nap unless I’m sick or pregnant, so I don’t do that, but I’ll sit outside and relax. Right now, I’d use the time to work and clean since we haven’t had our nanny in weeks and there’s never time to do anything. But on a weekend? Relax.  

Can you explain Margot’s “moment on the couch” more? Would love to implement in my home. 

Haha. Yes. So if Margot gets worked up I’ll ask if she needs a moment to calm down. If she’s tired or upset, or now, if she wants to watch a show, she’ll ask for a “moment on the couch with milk and a show” so it’s really just her sneaky little way of acting like she needs to calm down but wants to watch TV. 🙄

Feeling uncertain in a new relationship. How do you know when it’s right? 

I’m not sure that you’d know if it’s “right” early on but I do think you know when it’s not, and if you’re uncertain, that’s something to think about. I’d consider why you’re feeling uncertain. The first few months dating Conor I was uncertain because everything was too good and I was waiting for it to fall apart since that’s all I had known. If you’re uncertain about a way you’re being treated or don’t trust the person you’re dating and have reason not to (or something else that isn’t positive) it might be time to have a talk or consider walking away. Message me if you want to chat through it. 

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