Push Present

Are you all familiar with a “push present”? If not, the idea is: Woman grows and delivers a human, so woman deserves a present. Makes sense, right?!

My husband and I aren’t too big on presents at this point in our relationship, and I’m totally okay with that. We rather spend money on experiences and making fun memories together.

That said, I dropped a PRETTY heavy hint that I would love to have a little something-something to symbolize that I’m a Momma now. Ergo, my new Brighton bracelet!

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Original beads include: “Mom”, colored-hearts, large pave, birthstone charm and “S”. (Yes, my husband was prepared and had our girl name initial too. No, I’m not telling you what it was! :))

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A special thanks to my Mom for adding in the two spacers and another little bling bead for my birthday!

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I love this piece and wear it every day. Thanks husband!

We’ve Come Full Circle

It was St. Patrick’s Day 2013 when I took a home pregnancy test that showed the infamous “two lines”. Today, marks the official one-year mark when my lab test confirmed those results (then I hopped on a plane for a friend’s wedding!). What a year it’s been!

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Look, two lines!

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Half-way through my pregnancy. Seems like ages ago!

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Nine months pregnant. Ugh! ;) It’s honestly a little bit of an ‘out-of-body experience’ seeing myself like this now!

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My first official photo of just Momma and Smith. I was smitten from the first moment I saw him!

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One month old and the life of all the holiday parties we attended!

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Our first official vacation to Vail, Colorado for a little skiing (for Dad!) and shopping and girl/baby time for Mom!

I can’t believe we are approaching the 4-month mark with Smith. He’s been such a joy to our lives. All the anticipation those 10 months has not disappointed us, to say the least!

Think Spring

If you think it…it will come, right!? I’m officially over winter blacks and greys. So I am excited that  everyone will be encouraged to wear a little ‘green’ in their wardrobe today. :)

Here is my idea of a fun St. Patty’s Day outfit. How will you be sporting your green!?

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Dress: Old Navy, Tights: Gordmans, Boots: J.Lo via Kohls, Scarf: Gift

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Cheers to finding your Irish heritage today..or at least pretending, right?!

That Awkward Moment When…

You get called out for wearing Christmas socks…in February! I chalk this fashion oops up to a last minute shoe change. My original choice for the day was a boot, where these socks would have been fully covered.
I stand by my choice of the fun leopard flats instead.
And kept my legs uncrossed the rest of the day! :)

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But hey, socks, are socks, right?! I’ll admit there are some days where I pick a pair to match my outfit, but it’s a rare occasion. And some times, my Christmasy ones are the only ones clean!:)

Stop Growing…but Keep Growing!

So, I was getting ready this morning and put Smith in the rocker that he’s been hanging out in since the first time we walked in our house with him. We were talking and I was curling my hair and I saw him stretching away. And noticed that his head was touching one end, and his feet the other. WHAT!?!?! Hold the phone! Stop the clock! This can’t be! But alas, our little man is 12 weeks old and he’s getting bigger. I hate it, but I love it. 20140214-183354.jpg

I hate it because, well, just look at how cute and snugly he was? He was so small and peaceful and new. I love it because when he wakes up he’s ready to play, and he smiles, and he giggles, and he talks to us. It’s so very true what they say, enjoy each phase because you’ll soon be to the next!

*Side note: We have loved this rocker. If you are an expecting parent out there, I highly recommend the investment. This is where Smith slept for the first 6 weeks. It folds up really easy for travel and is light-weight so you can move it all around the house with ease.

Back to Work and I Didn’t Cry

It was a big week! I went to the office all five days and my little man had his first days at Day Care. And I didn’t cry. Let’s talk, shall we?
I was so lucky to ease back in to the working world like I did. My first week back my Mom was in town to watch Smith and I worked from home, minus popping in for a couple meetings. My second week Smith went to his other grandma’s for three days (Dad is home the other two!) and I worked from home a couple of those days also. Although I am extremely thankful for my employers flexibility, I was ready for the full routine of my new normal. No more hauling my pump around, no more conference calls listening to my little man play in the other room (almost more torture then day care if you ask me!), no more one-screen (dual monitors are key!) functionality.
So Monday came and it was time for that first drop off. That feeling of leaving your child in the hands of a stranger. But that’s just it. She doesn’t feel like a stranger. She’s been so pleasant to work with and her home is so warm. She charges by the day and is extremely open to our all-over-the-place lifestyle; a nurse that works 3/5 days a week and me who works shorter hours on Fridays. So with all that, I didn’t cry. I only teared up for a minute when she thanked ME for letting her watch our sweet boy. I mean, how kind was that!? I choked up that bit because I was…happy. Anyone who already knows they are lucky to get to watch my amazing son (*cough* bias Mom comment), well, she’s won my heart. And so with that, I headed off to work with a pep in my step and my eye on the clock. All things said, I was out the door at 5:00:30 on Monday. :)

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So, I do have a little more to say about this topic. And not crying. I felt guilty about it. About not crying. Because people made me feel guilty about it. “Ooooh, was it so hard?” “OOOh, did you cry?” “OOOh, do you miss him?” “How are you doing?” So here is the thing. Every Mom is going to be different. So this is strictly my story. I think some of the emotion comes from the build-up people make it to be. But I love my new normal. I love my job. I love coming home to my boys the days Aaron has off. I love pick up and the smile I get when it’s day care day. I love the routine. I love wearing real clothes again every day. I love that my son gets to interact with other kids. I love that other people get to know, play, and love my son. So no, I didn’t cry. In fact, I had a really great day (week!). And if you are one of those Momma’s that cries in the bathroom all day, that’s okay too. We are all okay.

Dirty Thirty

It’s a big day today folks. I turned 30. That’s THIRTY, 3-0, The Dirty Thirty, a new decade. Ohf-ta!! In honor of the big day, I thought I’d write a list. One of my favorite things. I figured it would be impossible to think of 30 life highlights (not because they don’t exist, but because it would be impossible to write them all down!), but I can think of 30 things that I love in my life, or just about life in general (in no particular order). I mean what better day to count your blessings than the day that starts a whole new year of life, right??

1. My handsome son, Smith.
2. My handsome and charming husband.
3. My sisters. Who are constantly teaching and showing me you truly can ‘have it all.’
4. My parents. Who show me time and time again what unconditional love really means.
5. My brother-in-laws. I couldn’t have asked for better ones if I could have picked them myself. They add some awesome value to our trivia teams! ;)
6. My nieces and nephews. Who constantly make me giggle. And are the key to keeping me young. It’s all about SnapChat and Rainbow Looms, yo! Wait…do kids these days still say ‘yo’?!
7. My mother/father-in-law. Honestly, I struck GOLD here people. They are so helpful and supportive helping us out with Smith. And are always good for that, ‘oh hey I just happen to have stopped by over dinner time….!’ :)
8. All of my other in-law family. They are such a great (slightly crazy, in a good way!!) crew. Mass group text are our new thing and I dig it!
9. My friends. There are not enough words in the world for all of these wonderful people in my life. From grade school, high school, college, and grown-up life. They all hold a special place in my heart.
10. My husbands friends, who have become my friends. They are such a special group of people. Many can learn from them on how to stay close as the years go by. It’s impressive and I’m honored to be apart of it.
11. My job. It’s challenging, fulfilling and based on relationships of all kinds. I truly enjoy going everyday.
12. My co-workers. They are a goofy bunch, as I was reminded of today at lunch, and with the crazy days we have, we need that fun!
13. My house that is a home. The walls grew a bit smaller with the introduction of our son, but it will always be our first home and hold a special place in my heart. That makes it sound like we are moving or something….we are not…yet!!
14. Going back to school. Yes it’s costly, yes it’s time away from my boys and other fun things, but I very much enjoy pushing myself to be a better professional.
15. Living in Iowa. Sure, it’s bitterly freezing right now and the summers get annoying humid, but I choose to live here for a reason. The heartland is just that…full of heart. I love traveling away, but I love calling this pace of life home.
16. More specifically, living in the Corridor. We are right in the middle of it in North Liberty and am thankful for the options of shopping, dining and play we have in this area. Those who say there is nothing to do, don’t look hard enough. Now, if we could only get our farmer’s market every Saturday….! ;)
17. On this trend, Okoboji. It’s our summer escape and I love every second of it. I simply cannot wait to get Smith up there!!
18. Participating in fitness races. I signed up for my first post-baby race for this coming August. I’ll likely do a couple between now and then, but August is my prize race. I love the adrenaline rush from racing and appreciate the motivation to get, and hopefully stay, in shape!
19. Traveling. I’m not a world-traveler by any means, but my hubs and I try to escape once and a great while. Lucky for us, we have a lot of great friends around the country to visit. And great friends that plan trips we tag along on! ;) This year’s agenda: Colorado, Mexico and NYC.
20. Pampering. We all have guilty pleasures, right? I am okay admitting that I probably have more than others. But, I like to argue that it keeps me happier too! :) An occasional mani/pedi, a shopping trip, etc. It clears my mind and rejuvenates me to keep on swimming!
21. Watching movies. I love escape from reality movies provide. It’s award season, which I really enjoy. I made a tiny dent in the Best Picture nominees, but not by much. I hope to see some more before the Oscars air!
22. Attending concerts and theater shows. I always look forward to catching a couple good shows outdoors over the summer months, but attending plays in the winter is a fun treat too. So far on the docket: Spamalot here in a couple weeks. I need to work on this list!!
23. My health. I think everyone needs to take more time to appreciate their health. I’m thankful I dodge the flu and cold season often without coming down with anything (KNOCK ON WOOD), but also that I don’t have to deal with anything much bigger than that (KNOCK ON WOOD). People need to be more thankful for this, every day.
24. Parties. Who doesn’t love a good reason to celebrate…anything? Birthday? Yes! Anniversary? Yes! Retirement? Yes! New hair color? Why Not!!
25. FaceTime. I vow to use this more in 2014 and beyond. I mean why just call a friend that lives away when you can SEE them?! Grab a cup of coffee, sit back, and enjoy catching up with friends that are separated with miles in between. Maternity leave with some awesome mommy friends have really made me realize how great this is!
26. Sweet treats. Remember when I said I had a lot of guilty pleasures? Sweets is a big one! But I’m ending my birthday with a cupcake with my husband and life can’t get much better than that!
27. My blog. Truly, I love having a blog. It’s my person diary that people seem to enjoy. How flattering! ;) I caught myself looking back at some pregnancy posts during one of my mid-night feedings with Smith. I love having life documented!
28. Lake and Pool time. My in-laws have a pool. My hubs and I have a boat and live right by a reservoir. Life.is.good. Well…in the summer at least! ;)
29. Sleep. It really is something one can take for granted before a baby enters their life. I look forward to getting more than a couple hours at a time. But until then, I just remind myself that I’ll miss that one-on-one time with my man when those days are gone.
30. And last but not least…just…life. It’s great. Appreciate it friends! Don’t take things for granted, and be a good friend. Keep in touch. Technology makes it too easy NOT to.

Cheers to the next thirty years. Now, I’m off to enjoy that cupcake!

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