Saturday, July 30, 2016

Weekending: Back to Reality

Well as if Monday's aren't Monday-ish enough, today I say goodbye to maternity leave and hello to the return of being a working mom. While this day is so so hard, I would be lying if I said I wasn't somewhat ready to go back. I am going back to a new position (more on that another day!), so it feels a bit more like the first day of school where you are nervous excited, compared to going back after Christmas break, which basically is just the worst ;-) 
So, this weekend was spent SUPER low-key. On Friday I squeezed in one final lunch date with my mom. We spent all of my leave together. She stays home, so having her help nearly every day with the boys was heaven sent. I love my kiddos, but to be honest I'm not sure how I would have fared being home alone with two under two every day. It is hard. She was there for the past 12 weeks to feed Jackson lunch when I had to nurse Lincoln, go on morning walks with me to get some exercise for us and fresh air for the kiddos, and to offer to watch the boys every now and again so I could sneak off to the gym or to get groceries in kid-free peace. Needless to say, she is an angel and I had the best summer with her. And Jackson just loved our lunch date because hello ice cream. He does not like when it gets on his face and you have never seen a kid more cautious with ice cream, it's the cutest!
After lunch I got away for a little alone time with my sweet Jax, and we ran to Party City for some birthday supplies. He turns TWO this week and I'm just not quite sure how that is even possible. 
On Saturday, Mike and his dad installed the appliances and final plumbing fixtures in our house! You guys, it is so painfully close to moving day I can hardly stand it. I know I can't exactly speak from experience because I haven't gone full term, but I imagine how I am feeling is about how the last week or two of pregnancy feels. Never ending. So close and yet so far! 
Being Mike was working the entire day, I ran to TJMaxx with the boys, grabbed some groceries, and whipped up some cream cheese white chocolate cranberry cookies. They were delish!
The rest of the weekend was really just spent preparing for my return to work. Here is hoping for the fastest Monday ever!


Tuesday, July 26, 2016

Talk About It Tuesday

It is my final week of maternity leave, and I really DON'T want to talk about it ;-) I am trying to soak up this last week with my babies as much as possible, so blogging is on the back burner right now. I am still checking in though, so go ahead and link up for Talk About It Tuesday below!

Thursday, July 21, 2016

Confessions

Happy Thursday all! This one is bittersweet for me; I always look forward to weekends, but next week is my last week of maternity leave, so there's that. I am soaking up these final days off, and am joining in with Danielle for confessions today.

I confess..

I hate Human Resources. I work for what has become a really large company over the past ten years or so. And while there are advantages, there are also a good number of disadvantages. Everything is by the book, and this can really result in feeling like you don't have a voice.

My kids don't sleep. A lot of friends/bloggers had babies very close in time to when I had Lincoln, as as they all are posting about how 'yay!' my baby slept through the night, I'm over here like 'hey my kid was up three times and to add the cherry on top my toddler was up twice'. Ladies I love you, but I hate you :-)

The final weeks of building a house feels a lot like the final weeks of pregnancy. Neverending. Can I just move, already?

We are in a heat advisory with a high of 99 today. I can't deal. You southerners are probably laughing at me, but I am Midwestern through and through. I am built for the frigid cold, gimme all the boots and warm sweaters. Me and the heat don't mesh well.

I really want to pull the trigger on the AE girlfriend shorts, but $45 just seems steep for a pair of shorts, even if they get rave reviews. Any sales you guys know of to get that price down?!

The Nordstrom sale makes me want to cry, because all my money is going towards house things. Don't get me wrong, I am loving buying curtains and a new kitchen table and blinds for my bathroom, but mama wants the Kate Spade earrings and some fun new dresses. #homebuilderproblems

My sweet baby is fussy, and sometimes I choose not to eat because I get so upset that I have to put down my bowl of ice cream halfway through to tend to his crying. Or I have to shovel the food I'm so quickly to do mom things that I think 'these calories aren't worth it'. Don't worry, I more than make up for it at other times. 

Speaking of which, I may have eaten a total of SIX chocolate chip cookies during the middle of the night when I was awake feeding Lincoln. Anything to make me feel better when all I want to be doing is sleeping!

When I am stressed or overwhelmed, I bake. Some people come home after a bad day and desperately want the bottle of wine; I desperately want to make the brownies and lick the bowl. It's becoming a problem because life lately is stressful! Mama can't have cookies and brownies around ALL the time.

With that, happy Friday eve, we are almost to another weekend!

Tuesday, July 19, 2016

A Final House Update [Linkup]

Hello ladies, and happy Tuesday! My blog game has really been slacking lately, but trust me when I say that I have never had more going on in my life. We just don't slow down over here, and I will definitely be sharing what has been going on lately soon! In the meantime, it is Talk About It Tuesday, and I hope you do join in!
We are due to close on our house in 2-3 weeks, and it feels surreal. Sometimes, the end date feels so far away, but other times I realize it is so dang close I can't believe it! Since my last update, lots of progress has definitely been made!
Jackson is a fan of the house; he loves to drive his trucks in the dirt piles, and he also loves to climb the stairs inside. The stair climbing is not a favorite thing for the rest of us, that child has no fear!
Here is an in progress photo of the paint. It is all finished now, and I love the colors. We did a really neutral and warm beige throughout all of the house, and the master bedroom and bathroom are a very light gray. Eventually, we will paint the boys rooms and bathrooms and spice things up a bit, but to start neutral works just fine! 
Here is a shot into the upstairs bathroom right after the tile was put in. We were SO excited to see real floors!
All the heart eyes over our master bathroom tile. I debated at one point scrapping the custom master suite and just going with the style of the rest of the house, but I am so glad we stuck with our plan. It feels like our own special space, and trendy and unique compared to the rest of the house, which is more traditional.
You guys, OUR CABINETS. I can't even describe how it felt walking in and seeing our kitchen decked out with cabinets and countertops. On a fun note, our countertops are actually laminate; I am blown away by how far laminates have come, my sister had to be told they weren't granite because at a glance that is what you would assume. I love how it turned out!
The only painted cabinets of the house are in our master bath, and I can't get enough of the 'greige' color we picked. 
I cannot wait to finally get my tub in there! See that cable jack on the wall? I envision lots of soaks in the tub with a glass of wine watching my favorite shows!
Here are the closet doors in one of the upstairs bedrooms. 
My fireplace mantle! I am already dreaming up all of the things I will be able to put on my big fat mantle. Garland, a Christmas village? I am so excited to use this space!
And last but not least, at this very moment the siding on our house is being done! The garage and half of the back is done right now, it is so fun to drive by and see so much exterior change from the beginning to the end of the day!

What's left? Concrete on our porch/driveway, finishing the exterior stone and fireplace stone, tiling the shower and bathtub, and carpet! Oh, and putting in our pretty kitchen appliances :-) Like I said, it feels so far, yet so close! By the time I am due for another update, we will be living in our new house! Someone pinch me!

As always, grab the button below and link up today to see what's up with everyone!


An InLinkz Link-up

Friday, July 15, 2016

Checking In!

Hello all, yes I am still alive over here. I thought I would have SO much more time to blog and invest in this little corner of the internet while I was on maternity leave, but wouldn't you know it, a newborn and a not yet two year old make for absolutely NO free time. When one isn't screaming for milk, the other is usually shoving a book in my face for story time or bringing me his shoes to go outside and play :-) Usually when I finally do find myself with a bit of downtime, my brain is so fried from the day that putting together a coherent sentence just is not going to happen ;-)





With that being said, I really do have SO much to share. On top of home building, some other exciting turns are happening, because really, what is my life if it isn't moving at a million miles an hour. I am not able to share anything just yet, but more changes are on the horizon with my return to work in a few short weeks. I am hoping to get my act together to share one more house update before we close in a matter of weeks, get some updates on the boys, and a few other fun things. #momgoals


For those of you that follow along even when I am pretty absent, thank you! I really love being able to share our experiences and life changes here, and I am still reading and following along with you all, even though I may seem a bit MIA! Cheers to Friday, and heck, cheers to motherhood, because this stuff is not for the faint of heart!

Tuesday, July 12, 2016

Thankful [Linkup]

Keeping it short and sweet today! Yesterday storms whipped through our area and it was pretty bad. My mom texted me last night to tell me we got 11 inches of rain yesterday. A nearby town had tornadoes touch down and tear up homes and sheds. There were touchdowns in my town but no real structural damages, as far as I am aware. Tree lines down and some flooding, though.

We are used to tornadoes in the Midwest, but I honestly don't think I have ever seen rain like what we saw yesterday. I am feeling thankful all of my family is safe and we didn't see any damage. Say an extra prayer if you can for our nearby town, they have a lot of cleaning up ahead of them to get things back to normal!

Link up below for Talk About It Tuesday!

Monday, July 11, 2016

Weekending

Another weekend come and gone. My leave is winding down so I am trying to soak up these last three Mondays before they go back to, well, feeling like a Monday :-) 

Friday night, we had a low key night at home, and snuck out to the house to check out our new flooring at the house!!! I am falling more in love with our bathroom every day.

We are going to start seeing major progress and change on our house from here on out, and I can't wait to share updates! To see our progress so far, check here and here.

On Saturday, Mike spent the morning working on the house, so I took my little men out on a walk to enjoy the gorgeous weather. As soon as Mike got home, he cleaned up to head out to a bachelor party. I swear, life just has not slowed down for a second this summer! Oh how I am going to relish the first weekend with no plans in our new house to just be together as a family :-)
After I dropped Mike off at my brother in laws, I decided I was braving the mall with my boys. Jackson in his folding stroller and Lincoln in the Solly, we braved the place. There is a new toy store in our mall, and sweet Jackson sat at the train table there a solid ten minutes and was not happy when it was time to leave. This kid cannot get enough trains!
It was coming up on lunch time and I still had to get through Target, so I treated Jackson to the food court for the first time. We split a jumbo piece of pizza. I mean...I managed to steal the crust from this guy. #pizzaaddict #hisfathersson
Jackson loves taking his picture and was happy to take a family selfie. He kills me in his little side turned cap!
After our mall adventure, the boys crashed. And I sat and watched them sleep. I love nap time, but it's also a bit like house arrest, especially when you are on your own and don't have your own house to take care of!
After naps, we had lobster dinner at grandma and grandpas. Jackson decided to take a little dip in the fountain on the deck. Doesn't he look like he was just caught red handed doing something naughty?!
Of course I was too busy eating the lobster to take a picture of the lobster ;-) I did manage to capture the delicious margarita I enjoyed with my mom, courtesy of my dad!
Sunday was another full morning/afternoon at the house for Mike, so we hung low around the house all day, went on a walk, and while both boys napped at the same time, my mother in law and I enjoyed some HGTV time! The night was topped off with watching Happy Feet and changing toddler sheets after an accident while we put him down to bed. With that, onto Monday!

Linking up with Biana today.

Wednesday, July 6, 2016

Lincoln: Two Months

Another month has passed, and Lincoln is already two months old. Time continues to move by faster and faster, and while it seems like he has been with us forever, I also cannot believe it has been two whole months. We have seen such change and growth in him, especially over the past week or two, and it is so fun to really see his little personality begin to shine through. He is becoming less and less fussy and more and more interactive, and we couldn't be happier or more in love with the little guy! 


Age: two months
Height: 24.5 inches or so. Again, these are my measurements and we will get the doctors tomorrow! 
Weight: We have an official weigh in tomorrow at his two month appointment, but the scale at home says he has solidly passed the 15 pound mark. Jackson was about 13 pounds at two months (see his post here), and I remember thinking that was so big! He is just a big baby all around. So big, and sooo squishy. Both height and weight put him at about the 90-98th percentile!
Milestones: So many smiles this month! He is really starting to coo and use his voice, which is really what gets a mama through the first difficult weeks. He also holds his head up like a champ, and has progressed to semi-regulated and scheduled dirty diapers. It is a good day when not every diaper is a poopy one, just saying. 
Sleep: I really don't think there was much of a change in this over the past month. He is up about twice a night around midnight and 3am. After 3am, he is kind of up on and off and we don't get another solid stretch. His days are hit and miss; sometimes he naps a ton and is hard to wake up, and other days he takes mini cat naps and really won't sleep no matter what we do. I am hoping this month is where we really start to see longer stretches. I'm not even hoping for sleeping through the night, but if we could just get it to once a night, that would be amazing!
Best Moment: Listening to his sweet sweet baby sounds. He is spending so much more time awake, and is becoming more and more reactive to our facial expressions and noises. A boop on the nose has this sweet boy full of smiles and coos. He is just the sweetest. 
Worst Moment: I will be honest, this month was just rough all around. From about 4-7ish weeks old, Lincoln cried all. the. time. All he wanted was to be held and rocked and fed, and that is challenging when your older child is still a baby himself. I had one week there where, being honest, I said to myself, usually while driving as he screamed in the backseat, 'I do not like my baby'. I hate to even put that in writing, but it was how I was feeling. My mom stepped up and treated me to a pedicure, and Mike and I did his brothers wedding baby free, and we both had the best night and it was exactly what I needed. Once I recharged my own batteries, I seriously think my babies could sense my calmness and we kind of turned a corner, Lincoln started smiling and becoming more interactive, and now I definitely like him and think I'll keep him :-)
Health: He did get a touch of the cold we had going around the house, but nothing extreme and he seems better already. 
Eating: He is a big eater, but really hasn't gotten too consistent yet. He gets gassy a lot, so often eats small amounts more frequently versus larger amounts in one feeding. But, obviously growing isn't an issue (see his weight ^^^)
Teeth: None, but he has started to drool a bit. Thinking we need to get him some bandana bibs, they are the cutest!
Likes: He loves to be held all the time, and is super into his pacifier. I have them stashed all over the place because I don't dare be caught without one. He loves to eat, and smile at the wall and light fixtures. He also has grown to like diaper changes, which is a breath of fresh air after over a month of him screaming every single time he was changed.
Dislikes: He is not a fan, but is somewhat coming around to bathtime. He HATES dirty diapers and loves to get changed and into a clean one as soon as possible. He does not like to be cold at all. He isn't a fan of his brother intentionally hitting him on the head with his toy cars. He dislikes being forced to take a break during feedings when my milk comes in, because if he doesn't then I practically drown him, which he also dislikes. He gets pretty darn grumpy when he is gassy. He is not a fan of his carseat or car rides, and screams about half of the time we drive anywhere. He is just a very particular guy and knows what he likes and, more importantly, he knows what he dislikes! 

Mr. Lincoln, you certainly keep us on our toes, and we are so lucky to call you ours. Your smiles are infectious, and nothing beats a little chatting with you. We can't wait to see how you continue to grow over this next month!

Tuesday, July 5, 2016

Weekend Recap [linkup]

This weekend was a low key one, but so nice and much needed. We hung low and stayed home over the weekend, but that was fine by us!
Friday morning, we got in the spirit and made some red, white, and blue M&M pancakes. Jackson loves chocolate, and was obviously thrilled.
On Saturday, we ran some errands as a family, including checking out the couch we are going to buy for the new house, and looking a bit at kitchen tables. The chairs were not my cup of tea, but I am kind of liking the table below! It is so hard to figure out what will match until we see the flooring and cabinets, though!

After furniture shopping and a Target run, we decided to brave dinner with the two boys for the first time. Lincoln slept the whole time and Jackson was a little champ. Of course the picture below was the best I could capture, toddler struggles are real.

Look at this little angel below, so content to hang out in his carseat!

All weekend, Mike and his dad were doing work on the house, so on Sunday we decided to finally let Jackson live it up in the dirt piles. He was in toddler heaven.

Just a boy and his trucks and a pile of dirt.

After the house, the little guy cooled off in the pool. Living large in a six inch pool.

This little guy was all smiles on the 4th of July. Have you seen a cuter baby!? Biased? Probably, but I don't care.

Jackson was not up for posing, as per usual, but he was rocking his flag shorts and checking out the sparklers.

We cleaned up, drove across the yard to the fire pit, and roasted hot dogs for dinner. This kid was loving life, and couldn't have been happier.

Lincoln slept through the whole ordeal.


We made some smores, and Jackson dove right in. It was so fun to see him grill out and enjoy a fire for the first time.

And then he ran off some of that sugar.

After all of that time outside, this little guy took a bath and didn't make a single peep. Not one! And this guy HATES bathtime. Made this mama's day.

We capped off the weekend with snuggles and a baby in some patriotic jammies. Hope you all had a fantastic 4th of July weekend!


Don't forget to grab the button below and link up for Talk About It Tuesday!

Friday, July 1, 2016

Friday Favorites

Happy Friday all! Does it feel surreal to anyone else that it is the 4th of July weekend already? I officially go back to work one month from today, this summer is seriously flying by. While I would love to share a bunch of red white and blue inspiration, keeping it real my focus lately has been on other things, like dressing my post baby body and buying goodies for our new house! So, onto some favorites!

I included this in my last Friday Favorites, and now that I have worn it, I truly cannot say enough fabulous things about this dress.
It was so insanely comfortable, flattering, and the color is bright and vibrant. I wore it to my brother-in-laws wedding, and am already looking forward to having an opportunity to wear it again. It is definitely a higher quality too-it is a jersey material, but it is nice and thick, soft, I could just go on and on. Buy it, you will love it, I promise.

Gap ran a 40% off of everything sale this week, and these were marked down to $25 as it was. Plus, I had rewards dollars, so I just had to give them a try. After buying and loving these boyfriend jeans from Old Navy, which is a sister company to Gap, I figured they were worth a shot!

As always, I have found even more loves at Old Navy in these tank tops. You guys, they are perfectly long, soft, and flowy. They are thick enough that they don't require a camisole underneath, too. They have been selling out, but due to what I assume are returns different sizes and colors keep coming back in stock, so keep checking because they are worth it. In fact, both my mother and my sister both asked the second they saw me wearing one where they could get their hands on it!

So, being my new bedroom will have gray walls and white trim, I really do not think our current red and brown comforter is going to do the job. While I am prepared to move into an unfurnished house, I definitely need to feel like my bedroom is at least somewhat put together, and after MONTHS of watching this set online, I finally pulled the trigger and ordered it. And I LOVE it. It is super soft, the flower details are gorgeous, and the gray color is a very true gray, not as dark as the picture. Of course I haven't actually used it yet, but I would highly recommend if you are looking for something soft and delicate!

With all that gray in our room, a little pop of color is necessary. I am all about pale yellow, and when I saw these pillows at Pier 1, I knew they were a must to complete our bedding set. They are bigger than I expected, high quality, and just gorgeous. They go so great with our comforter, and cannot wait to see everything put together.

With that, we are off to enjoy the holiday weekend. We will be sticking to a pretty low-key schedule, but I'm pretty sure there will be swimsuits and junk food involved, one way or another! Happy 4th, have a safe and happy holiday everyone!

 
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