Tuesday, April 15, 2014


August 16, 2010 was the day I found out I would be a "boy mama."

It came as a shock to me. Motherly instinct is something people say you secure once you've got a little human growing in your belly. Mine said girl, but my motherly instinct was broken, apparently.

As Jarrod and I walked back to the parking garage after our ultrasound, I recall saying, "I'm not disappointed. Girls are bratty when they whine, anyway. (I can only say this because I am one. Don't hurt me, girl moms!) Boys are sweet mama's boys." We laughed and were thrilled, despite us both being wrong with our guesses.

When Ethan was about one year old, I remember seeing a photo going around the internet that said the definition of a boy was "noise with dirt on it." I didn't find it funny. I got all mama bear and remember declaring that I did not think it was humorous. My sweet baby boy was not noise with dirt on him!

In October 2012 when we went for our gender ultrasound for Gabe, I was sure, again, that this baby was a girl...and when we found out we were having another little boy, I was a little disappointed. Ugh. That stings to admit.

I was so sure that baby was a girl...again. (and now, if and when there is a third baby, I'll know whatever I am feeling...is wrong! haha!) I wasn't ungrateful or mad or anything. It wasn't like that. Obviously, the gender of our baby didn't matter one way or the other. It was just surprising to us both again. We were both so sure.

As the 3 of us (and that baby boy in my belly) walked out of the ultrasound place, I admitted this to Jarrod, that I was a little disappointed we weren't having a girl. He told me it was written all over my face, and instantly, I snapped the heck out of it. That was not how I wanted to remember our ultrasound. We talked names the entire way home (We only had a girl name chosen.), and before we pulled back into our driveway, I was so excited...felt so blessed to be having TWO boys. Would he look like Ethan did? They would have so much fun playing together some day! They would be the best of friends! Brothers -- how special.

And now these 3 and 1 year old boys...watching them grow and interact the way they do? There is nothing better. I wouldn't choose or dream to have it any other way.

They've begun really interacting more lately. After breakfast each morning, Ethan invites Gabe to come over to his "back-up truck" (the couch). He claps his hands together as if to say, "Let me pick you up!" and Gabe comes over to him, giggling up a storm because he knows what's going to happen.  I stand, coffee mug in hand, and watch each time because it just melts my heart. His big brother is going to pick him up and throw him onto the couch. His "back-up truck." 

...and it's the best thing in the world in that moment.

There is a lot of blue and grey and black and green...and orange (That one's for Ethan.) in our house. The only pink you'll find is in my closet, and even that is pretty rare...

But I wouldn't trade any of it for the world, this boy mama gig. How greatly blessed I am to be raising these two sweet boys who make me laugh until I'm in tears many times...who make me so proud...who teach me new lessons on a daily basis. 

Noisy and dirty? That doesn't offend me. I wouldn't want them any other way. 

Monday, April 14, 2014

Warm Weather Bucket List Printable

In the same way I yearn for food-scented Scentsy and boots with leg warmers come September, I crave the outdoors, fresh flowers and fun come April. Before that, even, if we're being totally honest...more like January. :)

I sat down this past weekend to get a bucket list ready for our family because I've had a running list in my planner for a while now of all the things I want to do to make the most of our spring and summer.

I kept things pretty generic so that you could use it, too, if you'd like. Below is a preview of the printable, but there is a full-size version available here (click that link to view the one you can print). Or you can pin it on Pinterest for later.

Happy warmer weather to you! :)

Saturday, April 12, 2014


We are really enjoying the nicer weather. Aren't you? It seemed like such a long winter here. We're looking at temperatures in the 70's this weekend, and although it rained a little yesterday, that didn't stop us from spending some time on the swings at Nanny & Pop-Pop's.

I am missing my hubby. A lot. 'tis the life of an army wife, I s'pose. I am very much looking forward to spending some time with him tonight.

Gabe is teething, and has been pretty clingy this past week. It's interfering with his sleep a little, at night and during the day with naps. During the day, he gets so cranky if I set him down to -gasp- play with toys or something. From what I can see, we're dealing with one tooth, and it's been teasing us all week. I can see it right at the surface of his gums. Poor guy.

I am hopefully finishing the office painting today. There's a sneak peek up there. It's a light grey, and I am loving it. Now, all I need is some shelving to put e-v-e-r-y-t-h-i-n-g that's on the floor in a place. There is nothing but Jarrod's gun safe in my office as "furniture," and let's be honest...that 600-lb. eye sore is not furniture. Otherwise, everything that would normally go in or on a desk or in a closet? On the floor. One step at a time. It needs some TLC. Or maybe just this desk, to start. ;)

My body is back in pre-Gabe mode, and I am not loving it. Weight fell off within the first 3 months of his birth, and it blew my mind. It continued to stay off, and I could eat pretty much whatever I wanted up until his first birthday. Now that he's down to 2-3 feedings a day, my, how things have changed. I'm back up in weight (not anything drastic, but about 4-5 lbs. above where I was all this past year, practically), and long gone are the days of eating what I want. Also, I nearly forgot what acne was...and hormonal acne is back with a vengeance.

I am catching up on Pretty Little Liars. I sort of gave up on the show altogether, but I see people posting and talking about it, and it makes me want to find out what's going on and catch up. I adore you, Amazon Instant Video. I'm at the beginning of season 4.

Mid-month(ish) goal update: I have been getting to bed earlier and regularly (about 1-2 hours earlier...big improvement, for me). I've been doing my ab challenge consistently. I am back to using eMeals. I shopped yesterday, so, our dinners are planned for the upcoming week. I began purging my closet and getting ready to store winter clothing. I'd like to complete that this weekend, actually. See? I just needed some warm weather and sunshine to get my butt in gear! Now, if only I could literally get my butt in gear and regularly on that treadmill of ours... ;)

Wednesday, April 9, 2014

Likes & Dislikes


+ These C9 workout capris. C9 has been my favorite workout clothing so far -- capris, tanks, and sports bras. Bonus: These are on clearance right now!

- My lack of workout motivation lately. I'm just ashamed, but apparently not enough to do much about it. I know working out makes me feel better...but...blah. I have no valid excuses. None. Womp, womp.

+ Easter. Christmas has always been my favorite holiday, but Easter isn't far behind. I love how fresh springtime is, all of the delicious candy I don't need, and of course, the joy of Jesus' resurrection. Getting Easter baskets together for the boys is so much fun, and I love having Easter egg hunts for the boys and all of my nieces and nephews.


- The mess Dingos leaves on our carpet after the dogs are done gnawing on them. Little red "meat" pieces. Yuck.

+ Play dates. Yesterday, Ethan had something at church during the afternoon, and afterwards, on a whim, we were invited to his friends' house to play. It was so nice out (just a little chilly), and the boys loved playing frisbee and baseball and just hanging out.

- I paid for it, though. Gabe didn't have an afternoon nap and it took him an hour to fall asleep. Poor guy.

+ Remember my report of quiet/nap time fails lately? I found the fix...and I'm knocking on wood right now. My fix came in the form of a random clearance item at Target: a Leapster GS. FOR $14! Those things are $50, and it was purple, but for $14, who the heck cares? Not us. That's what cases and skins are for. So, anyway, long story short, I bought it, he loves it, and of the 3 days we've used it during quiet time, he's stayed in his room, he's fallen asleep twice, and even on the day he didn't fall asleep, he was in his room 1.5-2 hours. Now, how many of these pricey apps (oh, and rechargeable batteries...holy smokes) will I need to buy to keep this going? WORTH IT. :)

- People who only comment on social media with things that annoy you. Maybe you have someone like this. They don't really comment on your Instagram photo of your cute new shirt, that adorable video of your baby saying his first word, or your new car, but you post a complaint about something ('cause it happens, let's face it), and they're right there to say something to further agitate you. I'm not trying to be a negative Nancy, but must you? Sometimes, it's nice to just hear, "Aw, that stinks, I'm sorry." instead of something obnoxious to make it worse. :)

+ Let's end on a positive note. There are the beginnings of PAINT on our walls! Woooohooooooooooooo! After 7.5 months of flat, beige, builder grade paint, I have 2 light grey office walls (so far...not staying that way, ha), we have an orange stripe around Ethan's room, and 3 paint samples sitting on our kitchen island for other rooms. Hooray, paint!

Monday, April 7, 2014

Menu Plan Monday

I'm a newbie to Menu Plan Monday, so, hi to anyone from the link-up!

Do you meal plan? I find that if I just "wing it," a) we don't always eat so well, and b) my husband often asks, "What should I take for lunch?" before he leaves for work. I don't love either of those things, and truly, I love to cook and try new recipes, so, I'm not sure why I don't meal plan sometimes. It makes life so much easier, especially when I go the eMeals route (which I still do from time to time).


So, anyway! I'm meal planning for this week, and this is how things are looking:

Monday: Roast w/ Seasoned Vegetables

Tuesday: Chicken Orzo Skillet w/ Corn and Avocado Salad (Another on the eMeals list for this week.)


Wednesday: Honey Glazed Salmon w/ Seasoned Green Beans


Thursday: Chicken Broccoli Bacon Ranch Foil Packets


Friday: Creamy Tomato Tortellini Soup


Saturday: Baked Chicken Pizzaiola

Sunday: Leftovers :)