Saturday, August 31, 2013

Know It, Love It, Enjoy It

You know, there's some days that remind me I need to be thankful for the basic things. Like our health. How much that can be taken for granted. How vital our health is. Our livelihood. So today, I'm looking at my family knowing that life isn't forever, and simply going to be thankful.

Oh there can be so many things to complain about, it's been one of those days where everything seemed to keep going wrong. I'm not superstitious or anything, but seriously, it's been a lil weird, lol. Let's just say we're hoping our water main is fine, and that Jack passes a chicken breast bone he swallowed whole, and Rob's phone survives while recuperating in a bag of rice...

But regardless my heart swells with thankfulness for a healthy family. I hope to have many years of Rob and I growing old together with plenty of adventures along the way and watching this boy grow...

Sometimes I hate how true the statement can be, "you never know what you have till you lose it". Well I don't want to wait till I lose it. I want to know it and love it and enjoy the crap out of it before it's gone.

Yep, that's what I'm gonna try to do. :)

Love to you all and have a safe Labor Day weekend! Hip hip!!!

Wednesday, August 28, 2013

Not My Finest Moment

I'll be honest, I've realized my mind has been a little imbalanced towards things lately. When getting home after work, my focus of course goes right to Finn (I can't express how much I miss him when I'm gone) then my mind often shifts to logistical mode. 

Dishes, floors, things that need to be fixed, watering the plants that are dying, or more so thinking about watering the plants that are dying, laundry, laundry, laundry (the life of cloth diapering), feeding Finn, what am I going to eat for dinner...

I'm not saying all of this stuff does get done (don't worry, Finn always gets his dinner) but it just causes my brain to be full, and perhaps come down a little snippy, a little naggy and overall a little hard on my Rob. I guess I'm just doing some healthy self-evaluating over here. So here I am, trying to slow down my brain. Trying to take control of the craziness (yet a-gain) and see things a little more clearly and not through a dirty glass.

Funny story for you, although what's funny is that it wasn't funny to me yesterday or the day that? I had to run to the grocery store after work, which is always not fun because what do I want to do immediately after work? Run home and snuggle with that boy. But we needed groceries and I offered to do it. So I get our groceries and get home only about 20 minutes later than I normally would have. I pull up in the driveway, hoping Rob hears my car so he can help. He doesn't. So I pick up all the groceries, open our door and walk in the kitchen and gently toss the groceries on the counter. To be fair, they were pretty heavy. Rob is sleeping on the couch nearby. (I've mentioned in other posts he doesn't get much sleep these days due to his schedule) Finn was in his crib starting to fuss when I came in, so I run to him and cuddle and kiss that sweet face that I hadn't seen for almost 20 hours (yes, that's how long I don't see him from the time I put him to bed to the time I get home from work) and then I go to the kitchen hoping Rob woke up and started putting the groceries away. Nope, still sleeping. So what do I do? Much to my embarrassment (later), I start putting the groceries away quite loudly. Rob eventually wakes (there's no way he could avoid the noise) and takes the jug of raspberry lemonade I'm fumbling with out of my hand and calls me out on my childishness. 

Not my finest moment.

Can you see why I needed a little self-evaluating? Our current situation and schedule is certainly not the easiest nor ideal, and man, sometimes I just want to whine about it. And trust me, I know whining does nothing. So sometimes I just take it out on random moments like bringing home the groceries.

I listen to a man I find to be truly wise in many areas named Dennis Prager on talk radio. I can't express how much wisdom I've gained through his show while listening to it for 5+ years. Although he does talk about politics, he also has a Male/Female hour (discussing various topics regarding relationships, male/female nature and tons more) and he also has a Happiness hour often referring to happiness being a moral obligation and controlling our bad moods and not inflicting it on others. I'm not nearly as eloquent as he is, so here's a 5 minute video from Prager University with his case if you're interested...

Some of the things I get frustrated with really should hold a lot less weight in my brain. That's really what it comes down to. And it's also important to remember all the things there are to be thankful for. Cause really there's a ton. God has blessed my family's life greatly. So this is just me giving myself a friendly reminder. 

Have I mentioned that Rob and I have an adorable son named Finn? :)

Love to you all!

Friday, August 23, 2013

Our House Is Growing Up

Slowly but surely our house is growing up into adulthood. Little things lately like a new bed frame that's higher off the ground than our previous one. Here's before...


Seriously, it feels like we're sleeping in a hotel now. Why didn't we do this sooner? Like when I was 9 months pregnant and straining to get out of bed. The frame was given to us which we are extremely thankful for. Those little bitty tables next to our bed are definitely gonna go and more lamp purchases are on the horizon for that space as well.

What else? Oh, a lamp switcharoo. Remember my blue lamp? It used to be sitting here in the living room, never intended to stay here since the height of the lamp is too small for the space and too matchy matchy next to the blue couch.

Anyway, the blue lamp is now in it's new home in our bedroom and it's perfect. My DIY paint swatch art is going to hang ever so sweetly above the dresser. Sadly, it's still not done. Maybe tonight or tomorrow?

I think it's shaping up rather nicely and starting to feel like us. Our master bedroom has some downsides, like our ceilings are super low in here, and we have very little natural light. So overall I'm happy to (finally) pull in some things to style this space and get my mind off of what it's lacking.

And finally after a long and hard search, I landed on this beauty of a lamp.

I'm not going to get into the deets of how picky I've been about my vision for this lamp, lol, but let's just say I wanted a silver based lamp with a white drum shade. And even though this isn't exactly what I was searching for, it's pretty dang close. And the price was too good, $50 from HomeGoods. I'll admit it helped when I discovered a similar lamp being sold at West Elm for $169. Mm hmm, that definitely helped. :))

And don't get me started on that blank wall behind the couch...I'm so itching to get to that...oh and rugs and window treatments and crown molding. It's a worm hole I tell ya...BUT I do know there will always be something, so I'm tryin to stay balanced and just celebrate these little victories.

Oh and here's a shot I captured of my poor sleepy man resting his eyes...have I mentioned his schedule is kind of crazy? Yeah, he doesn't get much sleep these days, poor guy. And there's sweet boy in some crawling action.

Gotta get back to my art piece, I'm pretty sure I'm going to finish tonight and that, my friends, is a HUGE victory. Will share pics once it's complete and hanging up in all of it's glory.

Happy Friday!!!

Monday, August 19, 2013

These Are a Few of My Fav-o-rite (Baby) Things!

I hope you all had a great weekend, it's a Monday yet again. My how the weeks and months fly. Lately I've been re-watching Parenthood. Have you watched this show yet? Rob and I l-o-v-e it. This show seriously plucks my heartstrings. It's a perfect blend of drama, comedy and just a whole bunch of real-life-ness. Personally, I get to see our families quite often (a lot of us live within minutes of each other) and this show reminds me how much of a blessing family truly is. Yeah, drama can ensue, but I wouldn't have it any other way. The show is starting back up September 26th and I'm a just lil excited about that.

Well along the lines of parenthood...(too stark of a transition?) I know I'm no Oprah - and sorry to say I'm not giving anything away - but I wanted to share some of my favorite baby related items. Some that felt like lifesavers, some that were just nice to have.

  1. Dria Nursing Cover: Let me start out by saying I use this thing e-v-e-r-y-day. Mostly and pretty much only for pumping but I used it when Finn was littler and less squirmy (now I have to retreat to a quiet room free of distractions) I love how it doesn't look like a nursing cover. However, I will say it's on the pricey side. If I knew how to sew, I'm sure a DIY version could be made. But honestly, I don't regret for a second getting this thing. It doesn't wrinkle, it's breathable and really soft.
  2. WubbaNub: At one point in Finn's early days Rob and I found ourselves wishing there was an invention that kept a pacifier in place, we even joked about duct-taping the thing to his head. I discovered these by seeing them in photos of my friend's little ones. The stuffed animal is permanently attached to the pacifier which helps hold the pacifier in place for your newbie newborn as opposed to it falling out. This especially helped when we would swaddle Finn up and put him in his crib. I can't vouch for this thing enough, it was a life saver and really helped us out in the sleep department.
  3. Evenflo Journey 300 Koi Car Seat and Stroller: Love this car seat and stroller. Super lightweight. Cute design. Win-win. If it lasts I would totally want to use this for our next little one, boy or girl.
  4. Skip Hop Moby Bath Kneeler: Okay, I'll admit, this was one of those things that I thought was maybe a lil frivolous. But for me, this has been my life knee-saver. I didn't realize how much I was dreading bath time sometimes for the pain I'd feel on my knees. 
  5. Skip Hop Mega Play Mat: When I first bought this, I had a little bit of buyers remorse thinking that we wouldn't use this thing much. But much to my surprise, I love this thing. And most importantly, Finn loves this thing. It's a generous sized mat, perfect for tummy time all the way up to crawling around. It has hooks to attach various toys to, a detachable mirror (that Finn likes to gnaw on sometimes). It's washable, easily portable, and pretty stinkin cute. 
  6. Ju-Ju-Be Diaper Bag: I love our diaper bag. And yes, I say "our" because it's totally man-friendly. It was a little shiny at first in this particular color, but I couldn't be happier with this thing. It's not huge or anything so it lets you pack the essentials and some toys, but prevents you from over packing. Which I personally like. The quality is really nice and I see it lasting for a long time.
  7. Noise Machine: Anyone else grow up with these machines? When Finn moved into his room, not only did I lose him, but I lost this noise machine! I love this machine and totally worth the price in my opinion. It's great quality and see this lasting for a long time.
  8. Aden + Anais Swaddle Blankets: We used these to swaddle our boy up for his naps and bedtime when he was a newbie newborn. Now we still use them as blankets. The best part about these is the lightweight material and the generous size. A lil pricey, but worth it in my opinion.  
I'd love to hear your favorite things too! I'm still just a newbie mom...constantly learning as I go. I try to think of the days of yore and think how thankful I am to have the things we have nowadays...not that the old days weren't great, but I'd really have a hard time parting with some of these lifesavers.

I can't believe our little ham bone is 7 months old. I just ordered a bunch of Instagram prints off of Picplum the other day. Love these little square photos.

I got a few funny comments on this photo the other day. A friend said it looks like Finn's presenting his mom and dad, another said it looked like Finn is quoting the famous verse "come to Me all who are weary and heavy burdened and I will give you rest." Truth be told, he really does give us a lot of rest, but if only you could see the other side of the camera. Leah and Jr in the background making all sorts of noises and clapping to get just a lil smile from him. They definitely had his attention. Rob and I were smiling non-stop for about 15 seconds just holding it hoping for the smiley shot. Lol, still love it though.

Happy new week!

Friday, August 16, 2013

Our Nights In

Will this DIY swatch art ever end?!?

While I'm working on some DIY art using paint swatches (seriously it's taking forever) I thought I'd post some pics from a random night of just me and the boy. 

I work full time, so needless to say when I get home, I'm pretty excited to see the boy. He's usually just finishing up a nap when I get there. Here I tried sneaking up on him to get a pic, but he woke up and caught me...

We spend a good amount of time on the floor in his room. I'm still amazed how quickly it went from him being a newborn who simply eats and sleeps, to being a mobile baby playing with toys and discovering things left and right. It's seriously so much fun.

A good portion of our house is travertine tile. I'm trying not to be too crazy about not letting him crawl onto it, but it's seriously some hard stuff. Lately if the door is open in his room he bolts for the opening...he's a fast little bugger. 

His love for this ducky pacifier cracks me up. The other night he was crawling on the floor toward the wall behind his crib. Apparently his ducky was wedged between the wall and his crib. He gave it a good yank and then popped it right in his mouth. :)

Although Finn does smile plenty, he is definitely a curious kid. The blinking light on my camera while taking these shots had his full attention. Still love these shots though and his wide eyes.

I wanna always remember these sweet days with this kid. Simple days, but so sweet. I'm trying to remember the most meaningful moments aren't necessarily the big moments in your life, but the small every day ones.

Happy Friday!

Tuesday, August 13, 2013

Family of Three

Well this is my second attempt at this post after it getting deleted. Gotta love that.

I realized that we barely have any photos of the three of us so I tried my hand at setting up the camera for a lil photo session. Do I wish that I wasn't so cheap and would get professional pinteresty pictures taken? Yeah, sometimes. But these will do for now. I'm really itching for a new lens. I think that's going to be the one thing I'm going to ask for Christmas. Oh and in case you were wondering, Christmas is only 4 months and 12 days away! This makes me oh so very happy. I can just smell the pine and cinnamon.

These were taken with my fancy tripod and remote, both gifts that I got last Christmas. And needless to say, I'm pretty thankful for these two boys in my life.

Sweet cheeks...

The downside to using a tripod? Tops of heads can get cut off. But oh well, cute pictures can still be produced...

We're kinda liking this kid... ;)

Love to you all, from this family of three. Well if I'm being nice I'll say 3.5 to include Jack.

lol ;)

Saturday, August 10, 2013

7 Months!

A new month for our sweet baby boy.

It's just getting more and more fun watching him discover new things. And there's nothing that can quite melt us like hearing his giggle or getting that huge smile to greet you when you come home.

The series of these pics crack me up...

He's really fallen into a great schedule with 2-3 good naps during the day and sleeping through the night for about 12 hours. Yeah, I actually found myself jokingly wishing he'd wake up in the night because when I lay him down at night, I don't get to see him till I get home from work. It's a long time for me, but I'm thankful he's sleeping so well.

  • To pull himself up and stand in his crib
  • To pull off everything that's stacked on top of a storage basket in his's so stinkin cute watching him do this
  • Our iPhones and remote controls, and yes when he gets a hold of them they go right into his mouth
  • Bananas!
  • Tags
  • Jack...yeah he's fascinated by him, especially when he chases his tail
  • Getting tickled
  • Music and playing piano
  • When mommy and daddy are home together with him...with our work schedules we're not home together a lot at the same time with him, so when we are he'll sometimes look back and forth at each of us and smile. I think he likes it when we're all together. (I do too) :)
  • Getting his diaper changed, he pretty much just doesn't like to lay on his back anymore...Rob has to use his legs sometimes to keep him gently pinned on his back, it's quite hilarious
  • Peas! (I'm not giving up though, will introduce again someday!)

I know that these posts are more for myself to be able to go back and reminisce. Things keep changing quick and we're trying to soak it all up. He's changed our lives in a beautiful way and we just hope and pray to be the best parents we can be.

Happy seven months sweet boy!

Thursday, August 8, 2013

Sweet Moments

I'm a working mom. I'd be lying if I said it didn't make me sad sometimes...okay, a lot of times if I think hard about it, but I'm trying to soak up the hours we get to spend together in the evenings after work. I realized that I haven't taken as many pics with my camera lately, so I took some tonight. Here's a few shots I took of the sweet boy. Just hangin in his pack and play while mommy scarfed down dinner real quick.

His looks are changing so much...his blond hair is growing...and that smile and hazel eyes. Melt me.

This past weekend Rob came up with a pretty funny invention. Finn crawled from his room to our guest room where I was wrapping presents and I saw he was dragging a little something...

It's pretty genius...his toys are accessible wherever he goes!

Soaking up the sweet moments around here.

Love to you all!

Monday, August 5, 2013

Light for the Day and Mexico Memories

It's actually been a while since I've visited this site, so I thought I'd share a few that I came upon that were some beautiful photos paired with some good words.

Rob and I had a date night last night and found ourselves reflecting on a mission's trip we took with our youth to Mexico many years ago. We teamed up with a youth group and church down there and found some of our greatest memories ministering alongside them. For Rob he would admit that it took a bit for him to connect with the trip, but all it took was some male bonding (aka playful wrestling) on a bus ride with our new friends and Rob's sock thrown out the window...and then it started to click.

We visited various churches, towns and a school or two. The people were overwhelmingly kind. Rob ended up being some sort of a rock star to the girls at the school. It was so sweet and funny how the girls flocked to him but in such a respectful way. At that time he and I were dating, and I recall a group of girls asking me if it was okay that they took a picture with him. I remember someone even giving me their lip gloss in a way of saying thanks.

We reflected on the growth that came out of the trip. And talked about how when your sole focus is on God and serving and ministering, so much growth occurs within you spiritually. It's just bound to happen. It was a good reminder for us both.

The last part of the trip we reflected on were our visits to some of the poorest areas around the city. During this part of the trip, Rob met a little boy. He came up in our conversation last night. Rob couldn't remember his name, but it was Spanish for "little fish". He was named this because he was found by his adoptive parents in a barrel with some water in it.

We're going to print this picture to serve as a reminder of that trip and all the precious people we tried to serve who in turn served us as well. What's funny is those type of trips can be so hard in the midst of it, but in the end are so incredibly rewarding.

Yep, we were reminded that a part of our hearts were left in Mexico.

Happy new week everyone!

Friday, August 2, 2013

Tea Towels, Some Uncoventional Art

It all started with an Amazon gift card.

I knew I needed some art so somehow I found myself looking at tea towels. If you don't know already (cause I sure didn't) tea towels are thinner, not really super absorbent like a regular kitchen towel. And the best part is apparently there's some really cute designs out there.

So I landed on this one.

I purchased a frame from Ikea and after ironing the towel, I set out to put it in the frame. Well it didn't fit too well and looked kinda funky in the matting (the picture didn't really line up right) so I decided to just fold the edges of the towel to make it fit. It's still a little wonky on the bottom, but I'll fix that another day.

Right now it's leaning on the piano. I'm pretty sure I'll do a grouping of frames and possibly a wall lamp above the piano some day. Oh and one of these days I'll get this beautiful thing tuned. It doesn't stop me from playing it, but it will be more enjoyable when it sounds right. You know, it's the little things.

Here's some other cute tea towels I found on Amazon. Really an inexpensive way to get some art. I could see framing them or just hanging them on the wall.

Cute, right? I also found this Pinterest board that has a lot more if your tea towel interest has been piqued.

So what's on deck for the Dunkin house?
  • A new light fixture that's going up in our hallway
  • DIY paint swatch art for our bedroom
  • Master bathroom upgrades (need to install new waffle weave shower curtain and new mirror cabinet)
It feels nice to finally have a little focus on our bedroom and master bath. It's been a really drab blank canvas and I'm ready to get some style in there. House to home. Slowly but surely. And then when it's all done, it'll be time to move again.

JUST kidding...hopefully. :)


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