Our Etta!

Our Etta!

And just like that, she's here! Our little Etta Garnett Vidra had plans of her own on the timing of her big debut, making her way into the world two weeks early over Memorial Day weekend. Today marks her official due date, which feels surreal since we can't imagine the past 2 weeks any other way than with her here. That said, while we were mentally prepared for any scenario, we fully expected her to come on or past her due date.

Garnett is a family name, originating from Tim's grandmother's maiden name. We also like the play off garnet, the stone, since it's Tim's birthstone. Etta is a name we both loved, but with less personal ties. It has mixed meanings including "little one" and "ruler of the home," which both seem fitting.

We're looking forward to writing down our detailed birth story, but thought it would be fun to share a few snaps from the past two weeks of navigating the new world with Etta in it.

Overall she's an incredibly calm, happy baby. She's sleeping and eating well, and gained her birth weight back by our first visit to the doctor a few days after leaving the hospital. Between the two of us, Tim and I knew she'd be a good eater. We've been spending our days distinguishing between coos and cries, and her favorite hangout spot has been her woven Moses basket which we've used interchangeably as a bassinet at night and nearby lounge spot wherever we may be during the day.

One of the biggest surprises has been her full head of dark hair! We joked throughout the pregnancy about wanting a baby with hair, and Tim even read up on wives' tales for how to increase our odds. He discovered that the mothers of babies with hair tend to have more heartburn during pregnancy, so Tim ended up fixing lots of spicy foods over the last several months and in our case, it seemed to work.

One of the more frequent questions we're getting is how Basil is taking to Etta's arrival.

Mainly, he's been very careful. He knows something has changed and that there's a new tiny being that makes little noises from time to time. He's treated her as fragile, giving a few cautious sniffs each day and has been navigating the new normal right along with us. We keep telling Basil to give it 6 months before Etta will be his new best friend in the high chair to patiently wait under for falling food.

This new world of learning our daughter has been utterly humbling and awesome. Coming from someone who's regular comfort zone is making corporate conference calls and creating executive decks, slowly adding in layers of difficultly like breastfeeding, dressing and getting Etta ready to go to the doctor within a structured timeline are skills I (a.) never thought could be so challenging and (b.) feel endlessly grateful to have the opportunity to fumble into.

Other new skills I'm developing? Mastering the art of fastening clothing with snaps, in some cases even doing it with one hand! Also (maybe most importantly), learning when to trust my instincts for what works for us vs. relying solely on the recommendations from books and classes I studied throughout the pregnancy. It's incredible how quickly in tune we've become to her unique needs.

As always, thank you for stopping in to check in on us today, and for the tremendous love, support and well wishes you've sent our way over the last 12 days since Etta's arrival. We're eager to share much more, including her birth story and nursery reveal in the next couple of weeks.

How to clean your kitchen appliances and keep them shipshape

Cleaning kitchen appliances isn’t much fun! However, it is important because kitchen appliances harbour harmful germs. Grime and mould can make them difficult to clean and maintain so we have some easy tricks to help you clean kitchen appliances and keep them shipshape.


Use a solution of 50-50 water and white vinegar to clean and sparkle the inside and outside of the fridge. Wipe the shelves and the crispers at least on a weekly basis to help keep maintain them. Use damp cloth to clean the finger marks on the exterior of the refrigerator.

Not many people clean behind their fridge but it is essential. To clean it, pull out the refrigerator and give it a mop. After mopping, vacuum the refrigerator coils behind the fridge.


Almost everyone believes that it is not necessary to clean a dishwasher as it cleans itself in every wash. However, you should clear the drain in the bottom of the machine for any food remains or mineral mould and wipe the linings of the door.


As most of the ovens are self-cleaning oven, it is simpler to remove the dirt as it is reduced to ash at high temperature.  However, there is still a need to clean the dirt around door joints and edges. You can always wipe them up with a solution of white vinegar and water or soapy water.

Scrub sponge with baking soda over baked on grime to vanish it off. Alternatively, wipe any spills quickly after using the oven regularly to avoid having to scrub it now and then.


For cleaning the stovetop, fill the sink with hot water and add some washing liquid to it. Soak burners and knobs into it and leave them for a couple of hours. Then scrub and wipe them off. Vacuum crumbs that have fallen in the crevices between stovetop and counter.


The best and the common way to remove baked on grime leftovers from the microwave is by heat a bowl of water with lemon in it. Let it be inside for a few minutes for the steam to loosen the grime and wipe the microwave off with a clean cloth.


It is relatively easy to clean and maintain a toaster. Just unplug the toaster, pull out its crumb holder and wash it. Also shake the toaster in the sink to get rid of the extra crumbs. Let it dry or wipe it with a dry cloth before you plug it back in.


Coffee Machine

Cleaning a coffee machine can be confusing. For removing the deposits clogging the machine, make a solution of one part of white vinegar and two parts of water. Pour the solution in the water chamber and insert a coffee filter. Run this solution in the machine and then run water in it for two to three times to clear off the vinegar taste from it.

These are some of the easiest ways of keeping your kitchen clean and maintained at all times. However, you also have another option of hiring a professional cleaner to do all these demanding tasks for you!