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8.21.2017

Last Week Today

Please excuse my complete and utter rip-off of John Oliver's HBO program for a minute while I document what has been an insane last week in my life.



Last Week Today


CHARLIE IS TWO
If you've spent any amount of time around here, you're probably thinking, yeah, duh. But no, I mean Charlie is TWO. In the last couple weeks, I have completely and utterly grasped the meaning of "terrible twos." It really is terrible. One moment he'll be completely fine, and then all of a sudden, seemingly out of nowhere- complete meltdown. I'm talking screaming, hitting, kicking, throwing things, destroying his room. Oh, and he's also taken to climbing into bed with us at night. So, there's that.

Every Mom I talk to assures me this is all normal behavior for his age, but damn. Chuck and I go through every day just trying not to lose our shit with him. So thankful that we make a great parenting team. We don't always get it right, but we do our best to support each other and praise those small victories when we do manage to stay patient and calm with him.

FAMILY
I haven't divulged much on this because it's not my story to tell, but my Dad has been in and out of the hospital and rehabilitation for the last month. Since he had a massive stroke 19 years ago, my sister and I are no stranger to dealing with his medical issues and hospital stints, but it doesn't make life any less stressful when he's going through so much.

WORK
We had a BIG event this past week. I'm so thankful to work in a small office with one of my good friends, so the two of us made an amazing team. There was a lot that went into this day, but we pulled it off and I've got the blisters from my high heels to show for it!

CROSBY'S 1st BIRTHDAY
In two weeks, my baby boy will be ONE! Plans are underway and I can't wait to celebrate this sweet soul with his family. It's going to be very small and low-key, but loads of fun. I saw an idea on Pinterest a while back and the idea stuck with me. So, we've decided that for holidays and birthdays each child gets four presents from Mommy and Daddy: 1. A want, 2. A need, 3. A wear, and 4. A read. I've already bought Crosby's "want" and "need," now I just need to get to Once Upon a Child to get his "wear" and "read."

LOVE
In less than two weeks, Chuck and I will be celebrating our fifth wedding anniversary (don't you have to be grown-ups to do that?!). Our fifth year together was definitely our hardest thus far. Between financial hits and just the exhaustion that comes with two kids under two, we've struggled with making time for one another. A date night to celebrate is much-needed. This week, we're actually going to get the celebrations started early with our first concert in years- Get the Led Out, an American Led Zeppelin cover band.

30 BEFORE 30
I crossed another item off my #30before30 bucket list yesterday! Several years ago, before she was as widely known, Glennon Doyle came to Pittsburgh to do a book signing for Carry On, Warrior at a store just minutes away from me. I've been a huge fan since I first stumbled upon her blog and was so excited to see her. At the last minute, I chickened out because #introvertproblems. I've regretted it ever since. When I found out she was speaking in Columbus, I promptly purchased a ticket because I was not going to make the mistake of missing her a second time.



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How are you making the most of these last few lazy, hazy days of summer?

8.16.2017

For What It's Worth



"The 2016 election was difficult on many relationships, and I was no exception. Like most other Americans, it caused me to see people who I knew and loved in a new light. It raised questions and doubts about their nature and character. I did my best to keep an open mind and hear out their side (I had a 50/50 success rate) and what I heard was that they were fearful. Overwhelmingly and abundantly, they were scared of terrorists. They feared for the safety of their schools. They feared for the safety of their churches, national monuments, and public places. They saw something in Donald Trump that made them feel safe. They saw a “tough guy,” they saw someone strong and uncompromising in his leadership. Looking at it this way, it’s not as hard to understand why so many supported his candidacy. Who among us isn’t afraid of terrorism in its various forms?

Unfortunately, for those supporters and the rest of us who were not as supportive, Trump has let all Americans down. He has done nothing to increase our security and peace of mind. He has antagonized foreign leaders. He has gone a step further and actually emboldened terrorists to continue their hate-mongering and violence.

The only thing he has succeeded in doing is closing the helping hand of America to desperate, Syrian refugees. None of us is safer under his leadership. Brown skin or white skin- terrorism is terrorism. And Trump has shown us all where his heart (or lack thereof) lies."

I posted the excerpt above to my Facebook page last night. I tried/am trying to sort through the events that transpired in Charlottesville this weekend. I remember remarking to a friend the night of Trump's inauguration that I took for granted how safe President Obama made me feel. I took for granted that my President would be on the right side of history. I took for granted that I could trust my Commander-in-Chief to always let his morality guide his decision-making. 

I am genuinely afraid of the man that currently resides in the White House. He does not make me feel safe. He will not be on the right side of history. And he has demonstrated quite clearly by his refusal to condemn neo-Nazis and white supremacists that there is no morality guiding his decision-making. This all scares me.

And yet, there's a glimmer of hope. Last I read, the man in the White House has a 34% approval rating. The majority of my fellow Americans will not let this man speak for us. We are better than his message of bigotry, greed, and hatred. We want for a country that is inclusive, that is peaceful, that is filled with compassionate, kind and good-hearted people. If we cannot look to our leader to set the example, we will just have to be the example. We must resist the message that any person is less than, in the eyes of God and in the eyes of the Constitution of the United States of America. We have come far, but we have so much farther to go. We will not let this bully speak for us. 

66% of us will not let it be so.





8.14.2017

CROSBY | 11 Months

The last few weeks have been tumultuous, to say the least. Without divulging too much, we've had some family drama and emergencies. Some of our loved ones have been going through a lot, and we've found any additional energy we had leftover after work and child-rearing has become consumed with ensuring their well-being.

So although I don't have much to show for it, rest assured that my sweet, youngest baby with his mega-watt smile is as happy and adorable as ever.

CROSBY'S 11-MONTH UPDATE




WORKING MOTHERHOOD
I won't pretend it hasn't been a challenge to balance three part-time jobs- it has. I am looking forward to when my seasonal position is done at the end of September. Although I'm committed to seeing it through, it requires a ridiculously long drive and has become difficult to stay on top of. I've decided that once that position ends, I'm going to try and obtain a seasonal retail position at a nearby outlet mall. This would mean that I would still be balancing three part-time positions, but it would be on the evenings and weekends when I won't have to shell out for childcare. It will also mean that I can afford to buy my children Christmas presents without increasing our mountain of debt.

BREASTFEEDING
Not much change here. Because Crosby is nearly a year old and because he's a solid foods-eating champ, we'll probably start weaning in the near future. I'd like to transition him to cow's milk during the day so I don't have to worry about pumping and supply issues. This would leave just morning and nighttime feedings which I'm fine with continuing until my little man decides he's finished.

As for Crosby...



LIFE
Sleep was not great this month. Between being awoken by his rambuntious older brother, and being kicked out of his crib while Mommy painted his nursery, he spent a large portion of this month being grumpy and tired. Poor baby!

Sleep issues aside, he became much more mobile. Although he's still only Army-crawling, he can get around! I'm fishhooking random objects out of his mouth like five times a day.

Chuck and I have completely enjoyed encouraging his love of music and dancing. True to his name, our little boy loves music. And his Mama just so happens to love twirling him around the room and watching his face light up when said music is playing. His first birthday will be music-themed and I just cannot wait to shower his beautiful soul with love and music on his big day!

MILESTONES
No real milestones this month. We've been trying to practice more standing and walking, but our little buddy is just not interested. Which frankly, is fine by me. If he wants to stay my immobile baby just a little longer, I am more than okay with that.

STATS
His next doctor's appointment will be at 12-months, but based on our bathroom scale, our chunky monkey is weighing in at 19 lbs, is in-between size 3 and 4 diapers, and wearing 12-month clothing.


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Just a few more weeks and we'll be celebrating our littlest love's FIRST BIRTHDAY! It's so cliche to say, but it seems impossible that our second born is already turning one. I can't wait to see what life has in store for this little bug. He is the light of our lives!


8.11.2017

HOME TOUR | Crosby's Nursery + Guest Room

This month marks two years since we bought our house. Two years ago, I couldn't imagine we would get pregnant much sooner than we planned. Two years ago, I never would have imagined that I would quit my full-time job to stay home with my kids. And yet here we are, two years later- Our home is low on cash, full of love, and a constant work in progress.

A few months ago, I finally painted our dining room. We're a family who loves food so we spend a lot of time in this room and it was time to give it some personality.

Although, I've had plans for two years to transform our awkward fourth bedroom/attic into an actual livable space, or convert our semi-finished basement area into a playroom for the boys, both projects require some money. Since money is not something we have growing on trees in our backyard, I've chosen to focus my attention on house projects that are actually doable.

We had always planned to have the boys share a room. But after four months of terrible sleep for all involved, I resigned myself to the fact that our boys would do better in their own spaces. We moved Crosby's crib and dresser upstairs into the boring, beige spare room that functioned as a guest room and we've been (mostly) sleeping ever since.

We knew we eventually wanted to transition Crosby into that room, but we thought it would be a year or two down the road. So I had made zero design/decor plans. But now that he's officially settled, he deserves a cheery space that's just his.

Crosby's Navy, Elephant-Themed Nursery










The room isn't perfect- I'd like new window treatments and some more decor on the walls. Most everything I already owned. But I am proud of what I was able to accomplish spending next to nothing.

Total, I probably spent about $20-25 on paint and painting supplies and then I spent $25 total on new bedding from Aldi and Ohio Thrift. That's right- a brand new comforter from Aldi's bonus aisle for $15- is it any wonder I love that place?!

SOURCES:
Paint- Sherwin-Williams Commodore / c/o Sherwin-Williams Greek Villa
Wooden "S"- Ohio Thrift / Krylon Navy Blue spray paint
Navy blue striped comforter- Aldi
Navy sheet set- Ohio Thrift / Red sheet set- Gifted from my sister
Nightstand- Pre-owned / Krylon Banner Red spray paint
Red elephant tapestry- Gifted from my sister
White crate shelf- Gifted from a friend / c/o Sherwin-Williams Greek Villa
Grey and white rocking chair- Target
Jenny Lind 3-in-1 crib- Target
Mudhut Xavier crib bedding- Target 
TARVA dresser/changing table- IKEA / Sherwin-Williams Banner Red paint

And just for fun, here's a "before" shot:


Two rooms down, six-ish more to go!


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