I flippin’ LOVE Halloween. Yep- that includes all of the stuff that goes bump in the night and terrifies you. Beau? Eh, he gets nervous. But me? Bring it on! So we’ve got some time… More
Or, at least, it was supposed to be.
Babies typically never arrive on their guesstimated date but we were so hoping that Baby Lovebird would make a grand entrance today. C’mon, weekend! We are banking now on her arrival over the next couple of days. Big Daddy Beau can barely contain himself and I am now simply tapped out. Ladies, you weren’t kidding when you said the last month is the hardest! Whew. And having three girlfriends, who were ‘due’ after Baby Lovebird, already have their babies this past week- makes me even more antsy and flustered.
But having the extra time at home this week gave us the chance to put more touches on the little tyke’s future room, giving us some relief and sense of nesting. There are still a couple more things we want to add in but we thought we would share what we have now!
Early on last summer, we knew we wanted to do a monochromatic room with greys, whites, and black. Babies see blacks and whites in their early weeks and months of coming in to the world and it helps stimulate them visually. We thought that was a neat fact! It helps that current nursery trends are modern and classic so we went for it. The style fits ‘us’ as well- we like to be up on what’s ‘in’.
I always had a vision for what the room would look like, so you can imagine the excitement a 40 week pregnant lady would feel when it all starts coming together!
Here is the scoop on what we placed in her room:
Wait…a Wu Tang poster? Yes- you are seeing that! We had this in our bedroom at the Hotel Lafayette after picking it up at an Elmwood Art Festival a few years ago. Thanks, WNY Book Arts! They designed this when the clan performed at Town Ballroom in Buffalo. Beau is a massive old-school hip-hop fan and as for me, being a musician and who teaches Ethnomusicology, this design totally makes sense. We wanted pops of color in her room and Wu Tang brought it. #CoolBaby
How fun are the clothing dividers we found on Etsy?? They’re printable and can be found here. Now to find cool hangers!
The room was packed. The sound of fast-talking, anxious voices overpowered the lobby of 500 Seneca and you could barely hear the person next to you. All ages (18+, that is) and types (suits and sneakers) were huddled together, worshiping over a paper map. Playful banter and friendly (maybe?) competition ensued- gearing up to beat out the other in the game. By 5:45pm, it became a room of salivating wolves.
Okay…we’re exaggerating- they were happy wolves! It was the Explore & More Children’s Museum Scavenger Hunt! (now known as the Explore & More- the Ralph C. Wilson Jr. Children’s Museum) The adult day of play event focuses on raising money for Explore & More through a fun hunt around the city of Buffalo. With a team of 4-5 people in one car, you utilize an app that messages trivia and clues as to where you need to go throughout the neighborhoods. This is how you accumulate points to win. So there we were- only 90 minutes to get in as many activities as we could with our friends Tom and Jess: mimic a statue at Albright-Knox, take a selfie with the Chef’s sauce can, find the type of bird above City Hall…we strategized as best we could and sometimes found ourselves racing against another team on foot while grabbing pictures and eating food.
We were so pumped to be a sponsor again this year. There are a few reasons we believe in this event:
- The proceeds go to the new Explore & More which opens Spring 2019 at Canalside. (duh.) The new location is massive (43,000 sq. ft.) and will offer MORE activities, adventure, and education for kids in a centralized location that benefits children in the city and surrounding neighborhood rings. Giving our youth the opportunity to access the museum is beneficial to ALL types of kids and that is one way we can grow happy, healthy, and curious people.
- We are starting our own family. We want Chloe and any future kids to have a beautiful, well-supported children’s museum where they can play and discover new things.
- Our region grows by new and re-imagined spaces for local residents of the 716 and those coming in to the area for a visit. With both of us being Leadership Buffalo graduates, one top of mind thing we took away from the program was ‘Make Buffalo Better’. Isn’t that exactly what the museum is going to do? A better city, region, and education for our future?
Enough sappy talk. The point here is the Scavenger Hunt was a HOOT. We cannot wait for next year and to see it double again (which it did in 2018!). If you missed it, that’s okay. You’ll make it in 2019. For now, consider supporting Explore & More through their new crowdfund campaign to make sure the ‘Lighting Buffalo’s Imagination’ exhibit comes to fruition. (Donate here) Come on and ‘play it forward’.
Because no matter what our age, we ALL want to get out there and play.
Serious question. Have you done an adult scavenger hunt? We have! Last year we hopped in a car with two other friends and cruised through the city of Buffalo, answering trivia questions and completing fun dares at different businesses to rack up points. All for the Explore & More Children’s Museum!
It’s happening again this year on October 2nd and we are super proud to be one of the sponsors for this event. We are so excited for their new build down at Canalside and cannot wait to take Chloe! This year, the Incredible Hunt: Grownup’s Day of Play (the fun name of the game) begins at 500 Seneca where you can strategize with your team how you’re going to win the Scavenger Hunt! Then, pile in to your car to go from Point A to Point B in the neighborhoods to tally up your winning score.
We had so much dang fun last year- laughing, taking selfies, stuffing our faces with cupcakes…all of the proceeds go toward the new museum so how can you not want to take part?!
Registering is easy and can be done online! You can have up to five people in one car ($250 per car- so you can split the cost) and spots are filling fast. Get your car set up here!
We had our cousins join us in 2017!
Here are some pics from last year:
It’s fun getting visitors in Buffalo. We are always pretty dang pumped to show people around and give them ideas for things to do, places to eat, and where to stay so they will have the ultimate WNY experience.
Besides the usual suspect stops in and around town, here is a list of our fav 11 unique things to do when you have fam and friends in town:
Shark Girl Selfie / Canalside
You’ll learn fast that Buffalo is getting bigger and bigger on public art (thanks to many initiatives of the Albright-Knox Art Gallery). One such famous public resident is Shark Girl, located at Canalside near the upcoming Explore & More Children’s Museum. Getting a selfie with this girl is a must! Who is Shark Girl??
Forest Lawn Trolley
We have famous dead people. Presidents, musicians, artists, pioneers…look up the tour schedule and book one through the cemetery. It’s manicured landscape adds to the awe of who you see in there and you’ll be surprised by the history you’ll learn. Book a Forest Lawn Tour
Hatchets + Hops
photo: Megan Ann Photography
McKinley Assassination Site
A small piece of history is over on Fordham Dr. where McKinley was shot in 1901 at the PanAm Expo. An underdog spot to visit where you feel like you’re back in time. Take me there!
Mural tour (on your own)
Us, Niagara Falls, NY
Murals pop up all over the city every couple of months. We’re are becoming a destination to see these, so why not map out some sites you want to see and get some great pics? Use Nickel City Pretty as a good reference point on where to find some.
The real wings at Nine-Eleven Tavern and Bar Bill
wings at Bar Bill
Take it from a local: we know where the best wings are. Take the off-beaten path and take a ride to East Aurora for Bar Bill wings (and beef on weck!) and the South Buffalo underdog Nine-Eleven Tavern.
Explore Buffalo Tours
Historic Shea’s in downtown Buffalo
Nothing better than hearing the history from the best. Check out their site to see what kind of tours they have going on. Architecture…food…crime history…something for everyone. Explore Buffalo
West Side Bazaar
An expo of some of our best international dishes in Buffalo. Get a little bit of everything including Thai, Indian, and Ethiopian. It doesn’t get more authentic than here. You’ll find beautiful artisan work here, too. Take me to the West side
pic from Buffalo Pedal Tours Instagram
A couple years ago, Buffalo got a few pedal tours under its belt for bar crawls, food tours, and city views. From Buffalo Pedal Tours to the Consumer Craft, the Tiki Tour to CycleBoats…ya gotta really work it to get there!
Niagara Wine Trail
Rent a small bus and take the wine trail experience. Great way to see Niagara County, taste some wine, eat some chocolate, and hang out in the vineyards. A fun event for guests to take home some wine! Follow the trail…
Riverworks: Zipline/Rock Climb/Kayak/Roller Girls
Riverworks has something for everyone. Adventure, food and drink, views, and if you check the schedule…some badass chicks on wheels. You can definitely make a solid day of hanging out there. Everything at Riverworks
Life is nuts. Nuts! We all work long hours, squeeze in some workouts, run kids around to practices and events, and try to find some time for seeing friends and family. For us in the Riggs household, it feels even crazier with our lifestyle but now that we have little Chloe we are refocusing a little bit on spending time together in a different way.
We’ve been getting away from sitting down together and actually having dinner at the table. That’s a major reason why we have teamed up with TOPS Friendly Markets during September- which happens to be National Family Meals Month!
We all know how important it is for everyone to sit down and eat together. Why aren’t we incorporating it more in to our lives? School has begun and it’s the perfect time to join us this month in really committing to cooking and enjoying dinner all at once. TOPS makes it super easy to find recipes on their site and there are some great prepared meals to grab if you’re really on the go.
It’s going to be quite the month of us sticking to it! Think we can do it?? Think YOU can do it?? We bet you can. We’re aiming for as many nights during the week as we can fit in. Follow along here on the blog and over on our Instagram as we show you how we’re doing it, what recipes we turn out, and if Chloe is down for it all. (what is she going to eat?! stay tuned for baby tips…) Head on over to Instagram at @Buffalovebirds for details on this week’s giveaway and see how simple TOPS is making it for us!
Beau has put this on his recipe list this week. Psh, this is easy!:
It’s a thing now. Heading out beyond the ‘burbs and in to *gasp* the country to take pics in the sunflower fields. Specifically in Sanborn, NY. We all are on year 2 for making this an annual end-of-summer trip…so why not check out the best of the best up north once you get that super perfect angle with a VSCO filter shot? We’ve got the deets for ya, guys.
So you’re in Sanborn…uhhh, now what?
All these selfies make me hungry. Here are some must-eat joints nearby:
Lewiston, 20 minutes from the sunflowers.
The Silo: on the water, kid friendly, ice cream, eat outside. More selfies.
Cask and Cow: burgers. The end. Kid friendly.
Brickyard Pub: BBQ and then a really good nap. In the village, so make sure you walk around the shops afterward. Yes to kids.
Water Street Landing: right on the river with a great view, drinks, eat outside, live music. Kids in the right condition.
Wilson, 15 minute drive.
Woodcock Brothers Brewery: beer, kid friendly. You’re happy now, I bet.
Sunset Grill: patio, drinks, good for kids. Tell Chad the bartender Lindsay sent you.
The Wilson House: so happy this is restored. Check out this 1844 home-turned-restaurant in the center of town.
Lockport, 13 minute drive.
Steak, Stone, and Sushi: cook on a hot rock. You’ll be surprised. Kids can go- we took Chloe and she had a hoot.
Lock 34: a good ol’ staple and the same place Beau and I met (previous name and owner). Music, kid friendly.
Danny Sheehan’s: steak and potatoes. So good. Where everybody knows your name.
Aguacates: Mexican, baby.
Ennis’ West End Tavern: Seafood. Meat. Hearty plates. Cannot go wrong at all here.
Ugh, I’m exhausted from smiling so much. I need a coffee:
Lewiston: Orange Cat Coffee
Wilson: Wilson Brew
Well, I packed the kids up and now I guess I drive home? Nope:
Niagara Zipper– zipline along the Erie Canal! Located in Lockport
Ice Bumper Cars– Also in Lockport- you haven’t seenthese yet because this is the only place in WNY to do it!
What other kind of fun things can we do?:
Wine Tours– figure out a plan to hit some of the local Niagara County Wine Trail spots- vineyard selfies are cool, too. (drive safely)
Stop at local farm stands! They’re everywhere up there!
Spa time at Niagara Crossing (formerly Barton Hill Spa)- check it out online to get a little spa time in Lewiston.
**check all sites for times of businesses before you drive somewhere!
We have some serious Mom’s rockin’ it over on Instagram that are living in WNY. Isn’t it weird how one day you find a new person to follow and you look…*boom!*…they’re from Buffalo? How did I know about you before!?
Here’s a list of some Mama Bear’s you should start following ASAP on Instagram. They have killer followings (ugh, and here we are in the corner like a newbie loser…), they share fun insights in to their lives and of their kiddos, some have a great blog game, others are like us and share their adventures strictly on social. Take a look at some of our favs! (*all pics from Instagram accounts):
@astoldmymama– Rachael Burow
Rachael wears a lot of fun hats- mama of 2, a photographer (opening her studio now!), a former model, and blogger. Her hair is fab and her baby girl is adorbs.
Erica’s smile is SUPER contagious and her family vacations are to die for! Take us with you, Erica! She gives a peek in to real life and photographer boss work.
@rachellynjohnson– Rachel Johnson
Rachel gives you kids, fashion (denim!), reviews, and daily thoughts of mom life. She always has cute glasses! Check out her blog feminineindenim.com
@ktnewms– Caitie Newman
I always die here. How can I get perfect shots and overhead views of babies in baskets!? Oh, the envy! Caitie’s pics are perfect and so are her babes.
@aratariathome– Lindsay Aratari
Hey, what a great name! 😉 Lindsay has the house we want and the pics to prove it. She gives glimpses of fam life while making us wonder where we can find her pillows….
@mintberrymarket – Aubrey Hlavaty
Aubrey curates and makes super cute baby/toddler/adult clothing here in Buffalo! Her sweet girls often model her products and you can get her goods on her site or at Village Designs on Elmwood.
@kinandkindling– Samantha Jo Gill
Samantha Jo shows us her cute fam trips and also runs BuffaloMoms.com while also writing the majority of those fun Only In Your State lists we can’t get enough of!
@thefebruaryfox– Sarabeth McElhaney
We recently stumbled upon Sarabeth and her beautiful fam pics which are super real and down-to-earth. She’s blogging at thefebruaryfox.com
Wait, she was in Japan?! We want to see more! Hannah shares her cutie patootie all the while sharing real-life mom probz and stories.
@lifeaskristinab– Kristina Battaglia
I’ve known Kristina since I was 16 and it has been so fun to watch her with her twin boys, baby girl, empire of fitness, and daily life. There’s a ton of real-life commentary here that will have you saying ‘yassss, girl’ for days.
@mollysowinski– Molly Sowinski
Molly is 1/2 of Molly + Kate in Hamburg, shares Insta stories of her kid crew, and then hits us with home inspo envy on every dang post.
Okay, how can we travel the world like this fam?! Major international envy here! Sarah and her boys travel the globe frequently and shows their experience plus writes about how to do it!
Who are some of your fav Mom blogs from Buffalo? Or even abroad? Isn’t it fab that we can connect so easily with one another in this tech age? I don’t think there’s anything cooler than future, current, and past mama’s sharing real life stories and offering up the best advice possible while balancing everything life throws at them.
I mean, c’mon. Guys could never do what we do.