Recipe for Happiness

Breathe. Blow bubbles. Spoil your animals. Eat pickles. Dance. Kiss in the rain. Feed your passion. Take time for yourself. Blog. Give to others; your time, your love, yourself. Enjoy every bite. Live. Pick flowers often. Sing at the top of your lungs. Shop. Write. Laugh. Wear cute shoes. Trust your instincts. Hug your enemies. Be kind. Eat your veggies. Let music pulse through your veins. Love with all you have. Don't be afraid to get messy. Create.


Failure (& Sugar)

It has been a weird day around here. Actually the whole week has been. Sookie is currently, believe it or not, taking a nap. (Gasp) The girl slept fabulously for the first 7 months of her life and now, it is just so difficult to rock her into a peaceful slumber. Have I mentioned I love our video baby monitor? Because I do. It allows me to tell that part of me that is the constant worrier to relax. I think because it is sweet to be able to watch her little tummy go up and down with each tiny breath she takes. I'm downstairs, listening to some tunes (Sugarland, Tegan & Sara, Ryan Adams, Lucinda Williams), having a snack, (see below) and working on making a new header for my Stella & Dot Blog.


Yes, hello sugar coma. And cavities. The funny thing is, I did not like sugar at all until after my transplant. Now I want to swim in it; especially since the pregnancy. I figure if I'm having so much pain and trouble with my gallstones, even when I eat only once a day and low fat, well then why not just drink Diet Coke and live on candy corn and frosted animal cookies? (Sounds like perfectly sensible plan, right?) Ha. I'm so frustrated and annoyed with doctors today that I just.don't.care. It is my body and I will fill it with sugar if I want to.

Completely changing subjects here...

Once upon a time I was a girl going to college and I didn't know what I wanted to major in. Once upon a time I thought my calling in life was to be a journalist. I am still in love with words and am always trying to express those precious moments in life I never want to forget, but I quickly decided that my career path in life was something very different. Fast forward through graduating college with a Bachelor of Science in Human Development and Family Studies with a Child Life emphasis, 4 years of being a nanny, and a good year plus volunteering at Primary Children's Medical Center. Oh, but I'm still not even close to doing what I thought was my dream job.

A little background, Child Life Specialists help families and children to cope with the stress and anxiety of the health care environment. Most of the time they work with children who are admitted to the hospital, but they also work with children on an outpatient basis as well as in dentist offices, etc. They receive an extensive education in Child Development and the many facets as to how different aspects of the medical world will effect all of the developmental stages.

And the funny thing is, something happened in May that I perceived to be one of the biggest failures of my career. However, armed with time and a different outlook, I now see that it was the best possible outcome of the circumstances. I worked so hard to get where I am today, and even though I am not going to work every day to a job that I went to school for, I know that none of it was a waste. And this is not me justifying going to school to be a mom. That was never my plan. Obviously I never in a million years thought I would be a mother. Hence, the career obsession and hard work. But of course life never turns out the way you thought it would. I will still do something with all that I learned in school, but it might just be in a completely unconventional way than opposed to what I thought I was born to do.



What I Wore Wednesday

Even though this is only my second time jumping into 'What I Wore Wednesday', it is so much fun and I'm kind of obsessed with this concept! I am also pleasantly surprised that it is helping me to work on my issues of just being happy with the way I am and to stop focusing on all of my insecurities. I have a special guest who participated with me this week too! Because let's face it, the girl has some cute clothes. ;)



Shirt; DownEast
Belt; DownEast
Headband; Miss Ruby Sue
Miss Sookie's outfit; Carter's
Flower; Local Boutique from last year (Before she was here! Awww.)



White Tank; Old Navy
Ruffle Pink Tank; Old Navy
Miss Sookie - Target



Shirt; Kohl's
Necklace; Stella & Dot
Flower; Kohl's (I think? Long time ago)
Miss Sookie's outfit - Carter's
Hair Clip; Etsy





Shirt; Target (Many moons ago)
Yellow Ruffle Cardigan; jcrew
Owl Necklace; Stella & Dot (But of course! :)
Miss Sookie's outfit - Cupcake Onesie; Old Navy
Pants; Carter's
Bows; Target

And I just have to include this photo because today was her first day wearing pig tails and I can't believe how grown up she looks! She is nearly 8 months old and honestly all of this has turned out so beautifully considering the odds we were up against. I am simply amazed every single day this all isn't some fantastic dream.



PS; Free Appdicted Apps this weekend. Put wigs, hats, facial hair and different hairstyles on your photos. All free this weekend only! How amazing is that? ;)



The Sweetest Words I Will Ever Hear

Please excuse her messy face with food all over it (this was clearly during lunch time) and her crazy hair she has going on. I've been putting bows in it lately and poof, it stays that way when I take them out. (Too funny.)

video

This girl has been saying the above a lot lately. I adore how her whole face is involved in the process. She has also been giving kisses. These are her two newest talents. I love it! I can't believe how fast she is changing, learning, growing; becoming her own little being.



Random Friday

Yikes! I just noticed the date of my last post. I've been a bad little blogger this week, haven't I? Time is just flying by. It has been a fun week and of course, busy as always. Here are some random things floating around my brain;

  • I had some outfits and photos ready for 'What I Wore Wednesday' but obviously I haven't blogged them yet. I am in love with that concept because it is always nice to have extra inspiration for dressing more fun than I normally would and being creative with my wardrobe. And really, it doesn't take more time to put a little bit more thought into what I am wearing for the day. An added bonus is that if I'm having a lousy day, at least my mood is perked up a little bit. I think I might have to add S to some of my photos though because she does have some adorable outfits!
  • S is having problems sleeping, she wakes up multiple times a night. Last night it was literally every.single.hour. At first I thought maybe it was night terrors, but now I'm not so sure. She has been sleeping through the night since about 3 months old. I don't know if she is having nightmares or what is going on, but it breaks my heart because during the day she is all smiles.
  • You know, sometimes being a mommy and having a BS in Child Development is a very bad combination. I feel like I can see every little area and detail where I am failing her. Mommy guilt is tough stuff. Every day I pick apart every tiny little mistake I have made. I thought I had guilt issues before mommyhood. I need to work on giving myself a break or I'm going to drive myself crazy.
  • I am so excited for the Utes to play New Mexico tomorrow. We are 2-0 and it is our first road game of the season. I was actually able to go to the game last weekend with my mom when we played UNLV and won 38 to 10.
  • Trying to figure out what Baby S is going to be for Halloween. I am thinking Pebbles? Her hair is the perfect length and color!
  • I want to decorate for Fall but it has been 90 degrees all week!
  • We went to the state fair a few days ago. I delight in watching things through Sookie's eyes as she experiences them for the very first time. It reminds me we should all approach life with such zest and wonder.
  • Today was not a good day. I was so frustrated by silly things. I really don't like when I let small issues overwhelm me. I even tried wearing Bare Escentuals blush in "courage" in a desperate attempt to find some. (Courage, that is.) But I need to remember and focus on the big picture. I have a beautiful daughter who is HEALTHY against all odds. I get to spend my life with the most incredible man who would do anything for me. We have beautiful family and friends surrounding us. I am SO lucky to be able to stay home with Baby S and spend so much time with her. Yes, it's difficult. Yes, I'm exhausted. Yes, motherhood is not for the weak. Yes, just one smile from her is worth it all.




Appreciation

I had many grand plans for this summer; my first summer as a mommy. It feels so crazy to say/type that! My first summer as a mommy... Some of these plans I have been able to see through, but it has been a little bit of a struggle along the way. Don't get me wrong, I know how lucky we are to have our girl here with us and that I have been blessed with staying home with her for these 7 months. It is incredible to me that everything has happened the way it has and that she is healthy. I am so grateful for her health. It is okay if I have my own to deal with because that is something I should be used to after 26 years of it, but I am just beyond in awe that she is doing so well. But it is hard enough to be a mom and even more so when you are taking care of yourself and trying to make sure your health is steady.

I've been in pain a lot of this summer. I'm still not entirely convinced that gallstones are the only culprit. I'm seeing some different doctors and asking for lots of opinions on this one. I have learned over the years that sometimes you have to ask a million questions and do most of the work yourself when it comes to health care. It has been frustrating and I was getting really sad about the whole situation, when it hit me that I am being really self righteous.

So soon after being handed the biggest miracle of my life, I'm expecting everything to go my way still, for my body to magically be a different one, for my health to all of a sudden be perfect at the snap of my fingers. Well it doesn't work that way and this morning it was like an invisible smack upside the head for me to calm down and take a deep breath. Yes, this summer has been tough in some aspects, but it has been exquisitely wonderful as well to watch my little girl learn to sit up by herself, to crawl, to discover the joys of food, to realize her toes are indeed her own. Yes, I'm eager to find out what is going on with me and find a solution, but I can't expect everything else to be perfect just because we received our miracle.

I'm somewhat ashamed for turning into such a greedy person. It is a strange phenomenon though; once you see and experience what you only ever thought was impossible, you start to dream big, really big and it is difficult to hold yourself back and stay in touch with reality. Your mind and heart start scheming together and wonder what else you could accomplish when given the opportunity. I need to go back to simply being in crazy love and filled with gratitude for the ultimate gift from my body. To remember every day what a marathon every minute of the pregnancy was and that it is going to take some time for me to recover physically. I can't do everything on my to do list every day, my house won't be spotless, but my baby will be happy and most days I might need to take a nap instead of putting laundry away, making bottles, or doing dishes. Even if it is worst case scenario and all down hill from here health wise, my body has been through so much and yet still somehow found the strength to not only create, but sustain another human.

And that is just priceless.



Up Late, Go Utes!

I'm up late being crafty again. Which is actually strange because I am new at indulging in the crafty facet of my personality. I tend to get frustrated if I can't do things perfectly on the first try. I'm making a shirt to wear to the Utes football game tomorrow! I have plenty of Utes shirts but red just clashes with my coloring. You see, I was blessed with the traditional redheaded pale as a ghost complexion and of course my former school and football team has to have red as one of their team colors. I'm finding a happy medium with this cute shirt!

I used a plain black tee I already owned. For the rosettes I bought a red tank on clearance for 97 cents at Old Navy and cut it up into strips. I might add some pearls in the middle of the flowers too for an extra touch. I think it is cute considering how new I am to this adventure of making embellished tees. ;)




Pieces Of Our Life Lately

I'm getting used to actually being excited for the weekend again. It is a refreshing change. Ever since R started working in the office (as opposed to at home) it is nice to realize he will be around to help out and spend time with me and the munchkin. Don't get me wrong, I know how lucky I am that I get to stay home with her, but sometimes even I need to be able to go to the bathroom all by myself. ;)



Last weekend we were able to go on a (much needed and rare) day date. Glamma watched Sookie for us. We didn't do anything grand or outrageous, but it was still fun. We grabbed some yummy lunch at Rumbi. I was actually able to eat without having a gallbladder attack. It was just a side salad and some chips and delicious mango salsa, but nonetheless. I was grateful. It is funny how intense pain after eating makes you so thankful for the simple act when it comes without pain.

We went to Babies R Us in search of a high chair, but no luck. I swear when I was pregnant there were a million cute ones to choose from. Now that she actually needs one, I can't find anything! Although I do love this:



We also made the journey to Target. The rest of the day was full of naps, laundry, and lots of college football. We spent Sunday with my parents; had a nice drive up the canyon and dinner. Sookie gave Glamma some kisses at dinner, it was just too precious. We found a poor little bird stuck on the fly paper out on the patio.



My dad and R got the little guy cleaned up and rescued. He did really well for a few days, but then he went to heaven with my parents doberman, Zeppy. It was a sad few days in a row to lose such innocent animals.

R ended up going into the office on Labor Day. I did stuff around the house and hung out with Sookie. My sweet Mama brought me sushi and the weather was so perfect we had a little picnic out on the lawn.



I went and picked up one of Sookie's favorite cousins, Kenley. She is always such a great help to me and Sookie just loves her to pieces and so do I! Sookie was fascinated with her sucker.





We went to visit our wonderful Aunt Doe and Uncle Jack and good family friend Jim. Sookie and Kenley played on the slide and swings while I ate way too much Almond Roca Buttercrunch Toffee and we talked about True Blood and where to find good sushi in Utah. (Answer: Happy Sumo.)

If you know how spoiled Sookie is, you probably won't believe me, but she is lacking in a fall wardrobe that fits! Glamma and I bought her some new fall clothes today at Target. I can't get over how stinking cute!



I can't wait for her to wear them. For awhile there I was nervous about all the fuchsia girl clothes out there, but for a redhead, she pulls it off well! I also picked up some new lotion for me to try; Aveeno's positively nourishing blueberry and goji berry. I'm really picky about my lotion and I'm usually a Johnson and Johnson's lotion girl, but I'm ready to try something new.

This is random, but, that bottled water commercial that starts out, "We don't swim in soda..." always makes me laugh because I would swim in diet coke every single day if it was possible. Well, diet coke or polynesian sauce from Chick-fil-A. ;)


What I Wore Wednesday

I wanted to join in on the fun of "What I Wore Wednesday" that goes on over at The Pleated Poppy. I can't believe I'm doing this; I'm incredibly shy and the quality of these photos are not the best. But, oh well life isn't perfect. There are only two outfits this time, but maybe more next week? Who knows. But here goes nothing! Please be nice; remember, I gave birth 7 months ago. ;)



Dress; Overstock outlet store (purchased Spring 2010)
Leggings; Target
Sandals; Gojane.com
Jewelry, Leaf pendant & peridot pendant necklace; Stella & Dot





Headband; Forever 21
Lace white button up shirt; Bebe (this made me laugh when I looked at the tag because I never shop there. Ha!)
White & Yellow striped short sleeve cardigan; Downeast Outfitters (Lovely birthday gift from two of my favorite people!)
Jeans; Express
Sparkly Shoes; Victoria's Secret (I purchased these years ago but still love them. On a side note I found an old mix cd and was listening to it today while wearing these. The gorgeous song by Tift Merritt, "Diamond Shoes" was on the cd. Made me smile!
Necklace; Live Multi Charm Stella & Dot

Well that was fun! Better photo quality next time indeed.


Goodbye Sweet Guy


I am having a hard time believing this sweet boy is gone.



Yesterday was a sad day.





7 months




Oh sweet thing. Wasn't it just a few days ago when you turned 6 months old? It's a cliche and I know I have said it over and over again, but so true how quickly time passes. At exactly 1:53 p.m. on the 1st, I looked at the clock. I was standing in the kitchen holding you (most likely making you lunch) and it was such a precious moment to see how far we've come in 7 months, to think back on that gorgeous February afternoon when it seemed like the whole entire world was encapsulated in that labor and delivery room, how my sobs of pure joy and relieved laughter danced together when I heard your first cries... and to think about how tiny your little legs were a year ago at this time.

Every day is a new trick with you! You crack me up. The other night you started crawling; you get up on your hands and knees and wobble back and forth a little bit, then you lunge like you are trying to hop a cliff, it is hilarious. You are so stubborn already and Mama knows that is why you made it here against the odds, but it also worries me a little; as I am sure before I know it you will be a toddler testing out my college education in Child Development.

You also like to move your mouth up and down, up and down, like you are making fun of me that all I say is blah blah blah to your ears. ;)

You are very good friends with Jack. You love him to pieces and sometimes grab his skin too hard and oh boy he will let us know. Sometimes I swear you will leap out of my arms to get to him. He makes you laugh lots and lots. You enjoy trying to have a conversation with him. I'm sure you can understand his barks and he, your babbles.

You are eating really well. You eat rice cereal and some sort of veggie twice a day now. If we would let you, you would do it all by yourself.

Sleep? Well you are a great sleeper but sometimes not during the day; I think you are afraid you will miss something.

You have two bottom teeth! They made their grand entrance not too far apart, the week after we had your half birthday party. They are so cute and just make your smile even more precious that it already was.

You are sitting up by yourself with no help at all! It was a battle of balance for awhile there, but you conquered it and have the hang of it now.

All these milestones all together, just within a few weeks of each other!