Friday, February 13, 2015

Happy Valentine's Day + My Charlotte these days

This quick and unprofessional photoshoot is brought to you by... popcorn. She was eating popcorn the whole time. And my camera settings were on auto. Sue me.

Oh my little Charlotte Alivia. She is right on her way to being 2 and I just can't believe it. Once she started creeping up on 18 months I started to get really baby hungry (don't get your hopes too hight...) And then she started pitching fits and then I got over it (it still creeps up every now and then). But this girl, I tell you what. She is so stinkin' smart. And endearing. She might be a diva every now and again but then she just smiles at you, gives you a kiss, and you just melt. MELT! Her language has just exploded at home, it's amazing. She is interested in potty training without any prompting from us. (She has pooped and peed in the potty! Can I geta fit bump!?) And she is OBSESSED with all things Disney (oh, there I am in this child!) She knows what "let's go get ice cream" means, which I fully blame on Devin. She gives hugs, and kisses, and tried to ride Lucy like a horse (I also blame that one on my husband). She tries so hard to help mommy clean and doesn't like ANYTHING yucky on any floor. She will pick the wood chips up off of the play set at the park and hand them to me... Her new favorite word is, "TRASH!"

She loves babies. BABY mama, BABY! She tries really hard to sing our songs with me. She has ALL of her 2 year old molars. She doesn't like quesadillas, grilled cheese, or HAMBURGERS... but she will eat a pulled pork sandwich, roasted red pepper tortellini, and TURKEY burgers (with edamame!)  She will lead you to the fridge if she is hungry, tell you that she wants to go for a walk or "oooww-siiiigh" if she wants to go play (and tries to open the door). She loves to yell "AMEN" during church. Not to mention she folds her little arms for prayers. She loves books, stuffed animals, and bath time. We practically have to drag her out of the tub. She tries really hard to put on her own shoes but does better putting on mommy and daddy's. Some of my favorite things she says are...

-Ccceeeeeeeceeee (Lucy)
-Eat eat eat
-Hungy (hungry)
-Diapy (diaper)
-Buh bye! (not just bye, it's buh bye!) 
-Paaaay! (play) 
-Doc (refers to her doctor toys or doc mcstuffins)
-Ella (Cinderella)
-Nigh Nigh (goodnight)
-I-oo-uuuu (I love you)
-Uggg (hug) 
-Good girl
-Runway (as in project runway- that's all me)
-Teeth (the girl loves to brush her teeth!)

Ok, so she knows way more words than that and pretty much every word she knows is my favorite. Because her being able to talk and communicate is just too fun. 
It's so fun watching her grow and learn. She just amazes me every day with the things she knows and comprehends. Keep growing my sweet smart girl! You are so loved! XO

Hooray it's almost Valentine's Day! Happy love day friends. 

Wednesday, February 11, 2015

What Love Is

Forrest Gump said, "I'm not a smart man, but I know what love is." I have been pondering that lately (as weird as it sounds). But it's true. This statement has haunted me in a sense since I first heard it. So much of what passes as "love" these days are expensive presents, flattery, sex (yes I did just use the s word on my blog) and in general worldly things. It is so sad to me that that is what love has become. Love has become grand gestures. The more grand the better! To be quite frank, that's not the kind of love I want my daughter to see or want. Because that kind of "love" isn't real love. That's infatuation. That's personal gain. That. is. not. love. When Devin and I first got married we were asked to attend a marriage class during Sunday School. It was kind of awkward at first but I think we learned some valuable lessons. One of my favorite quotes we got from those classes LIVED on our fridge until we moved from CA (which, by the way, I realized today... and I intended to print this out and make it live somewhere in this home of ours.) If you are married or if you have time (like 5 min), I encourage you to read THIS TALK. Yes, it's religious but even if you aren't you can apply most of the principles to your own marriage. Anyhow- my favorite quote is by James E. Faust and it states, 

"In the enriching of marriage the big things are the little things. It is a constant appreciation for each other and a thoughtful demonstration of gratitude. It is the encouraging and the helping of each other to grow. Marriage is a joint quest for the good, the beautiful, and the divine."

This. This this this my friends. Some of you know that I try and read Dr. Laura's "On the Proper Care and Feeding of Husbands" each year and sadly I did not have time to do it last year (it's on my to-do list ASAP) but in here book she is constantly asking her listeners, "What specifically have YOU done to..." Improve your marriage, show your spouse you love them, spice up your romance, etc.

 I have been striving for the past few weeks to make note of the little things that Devin has done for me to show me that he loves me. Here are just a few examples. 

-He lets me eat the brown bread at The Cheese Cake Factory 
This might not seem like such a huge deal, but I really don't like sour dough bread. And Devin knows that. So he quietly eats the sour dough and lets me have the yummy brown goodness. Of all the times we have eaten at The Cheese Cake Factory over the past 6 years, I don't think I have ever noticed that until recently. 

-He fills up my car with gas so I don't have to
It goes without saying that I am a horribly busy person. And so is my husband. Filling up the car with gas seems like such a chore to me (because, let's be honest... it is). I think I have filled up the car with gas once in the past 3 months. Once. And Devin called me while I was at Target and asked if I minded doing it. 

-He bought grass fed beef without me having to ask
All I asked was for him to pickup ground beef. Not only did he do that, he got the exact brand that I like to use. 

-He gives me time for myself.
One day, he came home from doing some manly thing and he said, "Why don't you go get a pedicure and buy some new shoes." Ladies, if you aren't married... find one that will give you time to yourself. It is so important (regardless of what some people say) you desperately need that time. A lot of the times, its just a bubble bath at the end of a particularly hard day. A few days ago he drew me a bath while I was putting Charlotte down for bed, just because he thought I would enjoy some quiet time. 

-He gives me time to study
This is huge to me. I constantly feel stress and pressure to do well in school. This is his biggest support to me while I have been in school. Last quarter was seriously outer darkness but he was seriously so supportive. I had a week where I was crying almost every day with the stress and pressure and he held me, and talked to me, and prayed for me. That's a real man. 

-He tells me that I can have whatever I like
Ok, don't get all crazy here. I'm not saying that if I wanted to go out and get a pair of Jimmy Choos that he would just let me (although a few years ago when we were in Hawaii I seriously contemplated doing that , but I was afraid I would never wear them! So expensive even with the discount at the Barney's outlet!) But what I AM saying is that if I email him at work and tell him that I just don't feel like cooking he says, "Ok, what can I pick up on my way home" or if I desperately need (hahahah) something from Sephora it's always "you can have whatever you like." 

So, this week as we celebrate love (or looking for love... or being allergic to love...) I think we can all try and remember more of the little things. Because they ARE the big things. 

Monday, December 15, 2014

Rudolph Wreath

This is a super (SUUUUUPER) short and easy post. 
Ok, it's a little late in the season BUT if you are a procrastinator and/or keep your decorations up longer than most people (ours come down practically right after the gifts are opened), then here is a little more holiday cheer for you! I saw something similar on pinterest and just KNEW that I needed to recreate it (especially after Michael's didn't have what I wanted). I totally like this better than my original plan. And BONUS: Husband likes it too. It's always better when your husband appreciates your craftiness. 

2 rolls of 10 yard burlap or mesh (I used gold mesh)
Metal wreath
Red ornaments
2 decorative branches 
Hot glue gun

To make!
Unfortunately I didn't get a photo before I started busting out my wreath... BUT I followed THIS easy youtube video and it was ridiculously easy (but looks pretty fancy). 
Then I just hot glued my ornament for the nose, made a quick bow, and placed the branches where I wanted them and glued them in place. So. Easy. And it makes me smile every time I come through the door. Merry Christmas my friends! 

Friday, December 5, 2014

Glitter Rudolph Ornament

There is just something about the holidays that make me want to CRAFT. And thank goodness because during my pregnancy I had a total craft aversion. So getting back into my creative side has been oh so nice! I really wanted to make a Rudolph to hang on my front door (stay tuned...) but Michael's didn't have what I wanted/needed BUT they did have these tiny ones and I fell in love. I knew just wanted I wanted to do. It's want I wanted for our door but just smaller! These are seriously so easy. I did these AND my wreath AND listened to my MedSurg II lecture while Charlotte napped. They look great on my Christmas tree but... I am planning on making more to give to friends (friends act surprised when I give you one). Happy crafting! If you end up making these let me know! I want to see! These would be darling in GOLD (oh... that's an idea :-) 

To make you'll need:
-Mini reindeer cutouts (Michaels)
-Small red (or other color) bells
-Mod Podge (I didn't realize until I oped it that I bought the wrong kind... but it still worked!)
-Glue gun!

To make:
1. Paint the mod podge on to the reindeer
2. Cover with glitter
3. Let dry
4. Hot glue jute to the back for hanging
5. Hot glue jingle bell nose on
6. Hang on tree
7. ENJOY! 

Also, if your husband hates glitter like mine does... be sure to clean up your glitter mess as best you can before he gets home ;-) 

Monday, December 1, 2014

Beauty Haul

Hello little corner of the internet. My, how I have missed you! Seriously! My life has just been plain nuts. I have barely had time to sleep, let alone blog this quarter. I have shed countless tears the past 9 weeks but I am almost through the quarter from you-know-where. Anyhow, I digress. Let's talk about what this post is really about. Makeup. Sephora sent out a 20% off coupon about a month ago and I went a bit crazy there (and picked up a few things at the MAC counter as well). Fall (and into winter) seem to be my favorite time to pick up makeup. Maybe it's the change in the weather but I always feel like I need to plump up my stash. Anyway-enjoy my friends! Let me know you are still here! I MISS YOU! XO

#1. YSL Ink Foundation
You guys... I can't even begin to tell you about my love affair with this foundation. I tried it as a sample on a whim when I went into Sephora for something and I. Was. Hooked. Yes, it's pricey at $60 but IT'S WORTH every penny. A little goes a loooooong way and it smells divine. It is a 24 hour wear (HELLO!) and it honestly feels like I have nothing on my face. We went to my friend's wedding in Aspen a few months back and I wore this foundation (sample) We even went to the pool and I didn't need a touch up (I did set my makeup with powder and finishing spray...) I cannot put this stuff down. I'm obsessed! 

#2. Becca mineral blush in flowerchild
I bought this online after lusting over it for weeks. I had never tried a beck product before but all the reviews pointed to "you need me!" Sephora has an amazing return policy so if I didn't like it I wasn't going to hesitate in taking it back. I tried it and I AM IN LOVE. A little goes SUCH a long way and it's highly pigmented so you don't need much. It's the most gorgeous peachy/pink sheen (not shimmer). It's my new go-to!

#3. Becca shimmering skin perfecter pressed in rose gold
Anything rose gold has become my love language. I did sample this in stores before purchasing it (our Sephora doesn't sell the blushes for some reason... boo!) and I remember calling my mom and telling her "MOM! My cheeks look amazing!" So, of course I purchased it! Sadly, it is FAR too similar to my Josie Maran color wise so I am swapping it out for Opal. But if you are in need of ANYTHING rose gold (um... eyeshadow bonus anyone?) I would choose this in rose gold... but ANY color is fabulous. 

#4. Origins GinZing
I have the absolute worst dark circles known to man. Made all the worse by these hellish last weeks. This is a life saver! I put it on right after I get out of the shower and I can tell a difference almost right away. Most other eye creams I have tried only help moisturize but this one definitely helps brighten my deep dark under eyes. 

I also purchased some tried and true favorites of mine- urban decay's eyeshadow primer and their all nighter makeup setting spray! AND a few gifts for my husband (which I am sure I will get to use as well... WIN-WIN!) Now, onto my MAC picks.

#1. MAC blush in Melba

I usually lean towards more peach tones when it comes to blush- don't ask why, I just do! MAC describes the color as "peach with gold" but it is definitely more mauve than anything else I use. While I love the brightness of my coral colors I wanted something a bit more muted. I'm still getting used to this one but each time I use it I LOVE IT! It's ridiculously pretty on the skin and perfect for almost all skin tones. 

#2. MAC eyeshadow in woodwinked
I honestly don't know how I missed having this in my eyeshadow collection (MAC, you are my eyeshadow soulmate... although I DO hear that Makeup geek and Morphe should be on my list...) but it's gorgeous. I mean, that's pretty much all I can say. It's a warm antique gold and goes on beautifully. 

#3. MAC eyeshadow in expensive pink
I'm almost positive I purchased this shadow purely on it's name. I mean... it's called EXPENSIVE PINK! And that's exactly what it looks like. I think I would have named it "pink champagne" because it just looks like pink sparkly, bubbly gold. 

Alright friends, that concludes my makeup haul (I think...) has anyone tried makeup geek or morphe products and loved them? I have such a hard time stepping away from MAC and Sephora! Help!

Thursday, August 28, 2014

I wish someone had said something helpful

To be honest- I had completely forgotten about this post! I wrote it last November (2013) when Charlotte wasn't even 6 months old yet. It was really funny to find this a read through it. It's still true! No photos: Just words.

Before Charlotte was born, I knew motherhood was going to be hard... but I didn't think it would be this KIND of hard. Does that makes sense? I expected motherhood to be challenging and difficult... I saw all the crap my mom had to deal with from us girls. But I really didn't expect it to be like this. 
I just wish someone had told me something that I felt was helpful...
All I got were, "Oh, you just get ready for sleepless nights!"
And, "Motherhood is the most amazing thing in the entire world! I love being a mother ALL THE TIME." 
And, "Oh, you think you're life is hard now. You just WAIT until your baby is born!"
How the heck are any of those statements helpful to a new or future mother? Hint. They aren't. 
So... to my new mom friends, soon to be mom friends, and already mom friends... here are some things I wish people had said to me...

#1. There are parts about motherhood that just plain suck.
My good friend Cherie told me this the other day (she is a mother of 3) and it's just a fact. I do not enjoy getting spit up on. I hate it almost MORE than poop. Because at least poop can be contained as long as you have a good diaper on your kid. But spit up can get everywhere... and then everything smells like cheese. And the crying. The crying really sucks. Especially when you have no idea why they are crying or how to fix it. 

#2. Yes, you will be exhausted. But you can do it.
I hated when people told me that I was tired and that it would pass. That never made me feel better. So I'm not going to tell you that it will pass (although it does... eventually they learn to sleep through the night). I am just going to tell you that you can do it. You can be exhausted and only run on a few hours of sleep. Just hang on until dad gets home so you can get some relief and take a nap. 

#3. Life does get harder... but also more fun.
I would be lying to you if I said there weren't times where I missed being able to just pick up and go to the store without taking everything and the kitchen sink (and that also didn't required planning to make sure we go at a time when C will be happy). But oh, her smile! And her giggle! And watching her learn and grow. It's pretty awesome. 

#4. It's OK to feel overwhelmed!
Look, there have been days when Devin comes home and I tell him I need to go hide under a rock for a week. Devin (carrying Charlotte) and our dog all follow me around. All. The. Time. I tried to go to the bathroom the other day and they all followed me. I said to Devin, "WHY do you keep following me!?" And he said, "Because you're the Mommy..." Being a mother is a lot of work, but being a wife, a friend and all the other hats you wear can all pile up and make you feel overwhelmed and that's OK! Take some time for yourself. Do what you need to do to get recharged. Call your mom, take a bubble bath, cry it out... and move forward.

#5. It's OK to cry. 
The honest truth about me and motherhood... There have been days when I called my mom and told her that I just couldn't do it anymore. I have told my friends that I just don't now how I am going to be a mother. There have been times where I have woken Devin up early in the morning and had him take Charlotte so I could have a break and a little nap. I have cried and cried and cried. I've been selfish and cried at the loss of my "youth" and our carefree days. I've cried because Charlotte is crying and I don't know what to do. I have cried because I need my mom. I have cried because I have felt so completely alone. I have cried because I have desperately needed a break and a date with my husband but haven't been able to afford to go on one. I have cried about money and the lack thereof. I have cried about whether or not I am ruining my child with my inexperience. 

But you know what? I wouldn't change my life now for anything. Yes, I still cry. Yes, I get overwhelmed. Yes, I still need breaks. But this tiny little love, is the love of my life. I have an amazing husband (who is also a love of my life) who gives me relief me I need it most. I have a mother I can call and vent to. I have friends who understand!
So keep on keeping on mama- you CAN do this! 

Wednesday, August 6, 2014

On not being present

If you know me, then you know that I am a firm believer that there is no such thing as balance- only juggling. 
I have heard it said that there is no balance, only family first- which I also agree with.
I'm just having a hard time giving up my time with my family these last few weeks. 
I am gone for over 12 hours 3 days a week and I get home after 6:30 4 days a week.
That's a lot of time being away from my sweet husband and sweet baby girl.
I never regret the time I spend with my family
I do regret the time I feel that has been wasted (with classes that are not necessary for my education but we still have to have our "butt in the seat" time) 
And finally- FINALLY I get why I am doing this.
My first clinical rotation has just started and I am at a long term care facility (read: nursing home)
And my first day there was so depressing- I came home 100% drained.
I won't go into too many details but it's just flat out sad and heart wrenching. 
My second day- it clicked.
I give up my time with my family to help others.
I give up my time with my family to care for others.
I give up my time with my family to spend time with people who sometimes don't have a family.
I am their advocate when they have none.
I am the one who cares when maybe no one else does.
I give up my time with my family... and it's really really hard to do. 
Often I have looked at my Charlotte and thought, "where did this time go?"
My time has gone with her. She is my time thief. 
Even though I'm not with her as much as I would like, my time still goes with her
I am always with her and she is always with me.
I find myself, however, being "here" but not being present too much of the time.
I have never been one to "find joy in the journey"
I am constantly thinking about what come NEXT
What I have to do NEXT
What tasks need to be done NOW...
How do I stop that? 
If I lay down for a few minutes I feel like I'm wasting time that I could be studying...
I am trying SO hard to be HOME when I am home
The phone goes away until Charlotte goes down for bed and I try my hardest to be present- here and now. And worry about tomorrow (and the next day and the next day...) after she has gone to sleep.
Because as much as she is my time thief, my worry and planning and list making is also a thief...
A thief of being present. 

"Time never stands still; it must steadily march on, and with the marching come the changes...
If you are still in the process of raising children, be aware that the tiny fingerprints that show up on almost every newly cleaned surface, the toys scattered about the house, the piles and piles of laundry to be tackled will disappear all too soon and that you will—to your surprise—miss them profoundly. Stresses in our lives come regardless of our circumstances. We must deal with them the best we can. But we should not let them get in the way of what is most important—and what is most important almost always involves the people around us. Often we assume that they must know how much we love them. But we should never assume; we should let them know. Wrote William Shakespeare, “They do not love that do not show their love.” We will never regret the kind words spoken or the affection shown. Rather, our regrets will come if such things are omitted from our relationships with those who mean the most to us." 
My messy house means that I have people to love... And I will be here and present for them... even if it means not getting everything done on my list.