Tuesday, September 23, 2014

'Move over Zorro'......'Zorro? I'm too young to understand that reference'



This post is about nothing in particular, just some random things I have to say and also an excuse to post my camping pictures

++Guys, it is my favorite time of  year and not because of all the blogger cliches like scarves and boots and pumpkin fairy dust, it is because SEPTEMBER is TV PREMIERE MONTH!!! The gang is all coming back! Mindy Project started again last week and I'll say it again, I want to be best friends with both fictional and real life Mindy, serious LOLZ. Vampire Diaries is getting so crazy and I am losing hope in a Stelena happy ending, but weirdly ok with him and Caroline's flirtations. Also Greys, I love you, you are my favorite show of all time but it's probably time to wrap it up. It also pains me deeply that this will be the last season of Parenthood and I am so not on board with Huck and Quinn on Scandal, so not on board!

++We went camping this weekend with some dear friends in the most beautiful luscious canyon. It was Everett's first time and how is it so fun to do first-time stuff with kids?! He was such a little joy cracker the whole time.  And despite waking up to pouring rain, that my hair still smells like campfire and the loads of laundry I now have it was ppppeeeerrrrffff.......Now we are home, showered, had a glorious nap, Ben is watching football and Everett is stacking a tower of 300 blank cd's.

++Do you know that Ben is an apple ha-ha-ha-hater and I am an iphone lover, it is basically like the Capulets and the Montagues over here. This new iphone 6 hype has obviously caused some turmoil in our home but we are working through these issues and trying to not bring up sensitive issues like the 'only an 8 mp camera?! scoff' and 'I don't care who had it first, apple made it AWESOMER?!'

++We played the always entertaining 'The Newlywed Game' with our couple friends while camping.  One question to the men was 'What would your wife say she wants more of: Hugs, Kisses or lovin ;)? I said 'hugs' and Ben had written down 'kisses'.  Upon hearing I said hugs Ben says 'Hugs? you want more hugs? Who wants hugs? We don't like hugs! Do we? We hug enough! Hugs? You just want to go up to each other and just hug?' Surprisingly we actually won the game last night cinching it with ' Does he prefer ice cream sandwich, cone or sundae?' Sandwich ALL DAY!

++I forsook all my motherly duties and read all six Vampire Academy books in like 3 days (don't judge a book by its movie) and I actually really loved them. They are edgier than Twilight and more organized than Vampire Diaries.  I currently have a mega crush on a fictional character named Adrian Ivashkov. Anyone else read this series?

++Do you ever get in those moods where you want to just buy everything.  I have like a list of 100 things on my wishlist on my phone right now and I know its all very materialistic but sometimes this mood just strikes me. On the list are these perfect bracelets (Ben it's our anniversary in 2 weeks!!) and a leather jacket and this duvet cover and all the grey sweaters and jogger pants!!!


^^^Jordan and Britt introduced us to this awesome outdoor Sweish game called Kubb
^^^"What does the Bear say?'


^^^Ever and Gray // Trying to put the moves on Luie

Sunday, September 21, 2014

38/52

A Photo Series 'A picture of my child once a week, every week for a year'

38/52
Everett went camping for the first time this week, he was a natural.

Wednesday, September 17, 2014

On Mothering: 24/7 Mom?

^^^My lunch date

Remember how I wanted to start an On Mothering series on the blog? Here is the first post, who is up for round two!?

The other day I was scrolling facebook and saw someone post an article, I don't remember if I even read the article, but her caption was:

 'my mom once told me that it is not my job to entertain my child every hour of every day, and I am so grateful for that advice'

When I read that, I was like 'What the heck? That can't be true.  Of course it is my job to entertain Everett every waking hour, that's what I'm supposed to do as a mom....right? right?'

So of course....I googled it.  "Is it my job as a mom to entertain my child 24/7?" haha

I read stuff on every side of the spectrum, about how yes it is-be present, get on the floor with them and play all the time. On the other side there were articles like 'Jenna Dewan-Tatum refuses to schedule her life around her baby-Power to her!'

During my days with Everett I really really try to make the days fun for him and be with him. I try to not have the TV on when he's awake, I try to only check my instagram when I am putting him down for his nap and if I have to run errands in the morning or something, I feel guilty and try to do something fun for him like the park or the pool or something in the afternoon. Ben is the same way, when he is home, he is constantly hands-on with Everett. We schedule our lives around his naps and bedtime. I feel serious mom guilt if I hand him the ipad so I can do the dishes or get ready for the day.

I'm not saying this to be braggy AT ALL, I am saying this because I am honestly wondering if this is the best way to parent. And of course, I am not perfect at being this 'present' mom, I check my phone when I shouldn't and at the end of the day, I am sometimes so burnt out of doing the same things over and over again and entertaining him in any way I can that I turn into zombie mom and lose my patience easily.

Everett is literally never alone. I am constantly watching him, playing with him, ENTERTAINING him 24/7. Everett is also a really clingy baby, he is really attached, has some major stranger anxiety and has never had a babysitter while he is awake since he was 2 months old because he cries and screams when one of us even leaves the room. 

So I am wondering if basically I created this behavior? Or at least enabled it? All of you are probably nodding your heads and like 'duh'. But I would have never thought that being an attentive mom, spoiling him with my attention could be a bad thing? Right?  But is he not learning independent play because he has no need to? But is independent play really that important?

I guess I am just thinking aloud and don't really have the answers.  Of course, it's probably all about chasing that elusive 'balance'. The balance between letting them learn how to entertain themselves/learn things on their own and being a 'present'/hands-on parent. And the balance for myself, between being a mom and being my own person; and maybe not feeling guilty when I take Everett on errands or things that needs to get done. He will have to come run errands with me for the rest of his life so he needs to learn things like how to behave in a store and patience. Right?

The other day at the park I turned away for a second and when I looked back Everett had climbed these big blocks to the top of the playground. The blocks that I had walked him up and helped him get up every time before. I couldn't believe he did that without my help, that he knew how to do that.  Then he continued to sit down, scoot forward and go down the slide ALL BY HIMSELF!! I probably never would have figured out he didn't need my help if I didn't accidentally let him try.  So I took a step back and let him do his thing-Then he fell off the rope structure and started bawling hahaha....see! balance!?

Anyways I guess my conclusions are that yes I need to be present in Everett's day-to-day, I need to let him know that I am there for him to play with and read books with and for comfort when he needs it. I also need to take a step back sometimes and let him learn and do things for himself, to let him try and play with his toys on his own for 20 minutes while I check stuff on the computer. I need to take a moment for myself sometimes too if I am running on empty or can't blow bubbles ONE more time!

Part of this is the first time mom talking.  I will probably look back at this post in 10 years with three kids who are rolling in the dirt somewhere and laugh because it will seem crazy to me that I spent every waking moment with my one child, giving them all attention in the world because 'ain't nobody got time for that' these days.

But seriously, what do you think, any moms have thoughts on this? Is it our job to entertain our child every hour of the day or not? Should we feel guilty for making our child play by himself for an hour? Are we just lazy or are we teaching him important skills?

Everett's version of independent Play:  I Knowingly let him take every single wipe out of the container, a good 12 minutes of distraction

Sunday, September 14, 2014

35/52 36/52 37/52

A Photo Series 'A picture of my child once a week, every week for a year'

35/52
Everett's favorite books are 'Oh my Oh my Oh Dinosaur' and 'Brown Bear Brown Bear'  (iphone)

36/52
These days his moods can literally change in one second.

37/52
 Puddle Jumper

Wednesday, September 10, 2014

My Daily Reads

Almost as much as I love writing my own blog, I love reading blogs as well. My nap time ritual is a jar of peanut butter and a spoon and catching up on blogs. I probably follow over 100 blogs but I find myself skipping over lots of posts lately and just sticking to my favorites. Blogs are funny, because I honestly feel like I know some of these women but I have never even met them. I like taking peeks into others lives who are going through similar things as me or people who inspire me. 

Here are a few of my favs!

The Daybook: When I first found Sydney's blog, I was instantly hooked and read every single one of her posts, like 5 years worth of posts! Besides her awesome fashion posts, she is a really great writer and you can tell how much she loves her family (she has a son named Everett too) Probably my most favorite blog.

A Cup of Jo: This is a fun, daily blog and Joanna seems so down to earth and like she would be so easy to talk to.  My favorite is her 'motherhood around the world series' but she also keeps me updated on the best upcoming movies, fashion trends and things like sleep training.

Elizabeth Ivie: I found this blog through her super popular baby blanket shop iviebaby.com, but her personal blog is so real and so easy to read.  She took a really long blog break but she is finally back and I am loving it!

Eat sleep cuddle: Whitney's blog is another super favorite. I think she is gorgeous and I LOVE her style in all things. She recently had a baby boy and she seriously is inspiring as a mother, she makes motherhood seem so special and noble.

Tell Love and Chocolate: I don't follow a ton of DIY blogs but I really like this one, simple DIY's but also stuff about her cute family and things she finds online she loves. I am currently attempting this DIY for our bedroom.

He & I: This blog has everything and all her posts have like a hundred pinnable images.  She talks about recipes, hair, fitness, photography, blogging tips, toddler activities and more! She is also an amazing grpahic designer and sells the cutest prints.

The Homebook: If I could describe this blog in one word it would be DREAMY. I love love this blog, she is so creative, has an adorable boy just a little older than Everett and her house is so amazing and wistful.  She has a real eye and can make the simplest things look gorgeous and straight out of a magazine. She is a really great writer too and I find myself nodding along on all her posts. She gets it.

Megan K Graham: This girl is a model and a neuroscientist but doesn't take herself too seriously and I always laugh out loud at her posts! She also is a TV junkie like me which I totally appreciate.  I started following her when she was 'across the pond' in England and Scotland and watched her fall in love with a guy from Ireland, get married and move back to California.  She is seriously fun to read and she recently is pregnant, and you know I love those baby posts!

Love Taza: You have probably heard of this one because this blog is mega huge and popular. She seems to have this perfect life in NYC with her adorable kiddos and I can't help but watch and read. She seems like a good mom and they are always doing fun stuff.
Merrick's Art: Most fashion blogs these days are way above my style and budget, but this one by Merrick is AWESOME. She wears stuff I can actually afford, shows you how to make one item work multiple ways and is so relatable.

Say Yes: Another everything blog! Motherhood, DIY's, fashion, recipes etc. This blog has multiple contributors and lots of great ideas. I love her fashion finds under $40 posts and her weekend round up posts.

The Alison Show: This girl is a Provo celebrity these days and everyone wants to be her best friend.  She is crazy and always making epic dance videos and so so creative.  This woman like invented Pinterest I am sure because she seriously can throw an amazing party.  She is also honest about her struggles, thoughts and yet is so fun and inspiring!

Honorable mentions to Cupcakes and Cashmere, The Small Things and Hey Natalie Jean.

Wednesday, September 3, 2014

My Nursing Experience

{two months}

Well I nursed Everett for the last time approximately 48 hours ago. In fact, I am sitting here writing this post with cabbage in my bra (it's a thing) and in extreme pain due to my tatas not getting the memo yet that we are DONE!

I was ready to be done, but at the same time, I am feeling a little teary about the whole thing. Mourning it a little. 

Everett was a colicky baby, he screams his brains out every time in his car seat and he has never slept through the night but since day one he has been a great eater!  They put that brand new baby on my chest and he went for it, he knew what he needed and we both just got it.

Everett was the happiest when he was in my arms and nursing, free hand hooked on my shirt collar or chest. And I was happy to be there. Looking back, those times together are so special to me. I guess it is hard to explain, but in the beginning when he cried in pain most all of the day and I felt so helpless to make him feel better, I could, with nursing, for a few minutes calm him and comfort him and I wasn't so helpless for a moment. We really needed each other. 

I loved to watch him fall asleep, the little grunts slowly stopped, his body go limp and relax completely. Just him and I. 3am singing lullabies and rubbing his fuzzy skin, then probably again in a couple hours but that's ok, that's what I'm here for. 

When Everett was a year old, he had to have a minor day surgery. I was so nervous about the whole thing. The nurse brought him to us when he was all done, he was still so groggy and out of it, he reached for me and immediately assumed the position, latched on and fell asleep instantly.  He nursed on and off groggily for about the next four hours and I felt sore but so happy and comforted myself that I could provide him with that comfort and peace.

It hasn't all been easy.  In the beginning I thought 'how do moms do this without looking?' and was so stressed about him getting enough milk. There were times I would wake up at 4am and have to go sanitize bottles and  haul the pump into the bed to get some relief if he was (heaven forbid) still sleeping.  I had a bought of mastitis and sometimes during teething times felt trapped in the rocking chair all night long because that is the only relief he could get. Overall though, nursing has been one of favorite things about being a mother.

I have become quite the breastfeeding-hippie-advocate-supporter, I can tell you all the amazing benefits it does for your baby, I know the percentages of mama's who are still breastfeeding at a year (27%) and I know how to keep your milk supply up, the formula for how much your baby needs at how much he weighs and have really tried to educate myself on the subject.  

I know some mom's bodies just won't let them and some have such a hard and painful time in the beginning and some just don't want to and I don't judge you at all, don't think any less of you, we are all just doing what we can for our babies.

I am happy and lucky I had the experience I did for 18 months, I will miss it, I am hopeful to do it again with my next babies.

Over and out. and completely engorged.

{18 months}

Tuesday, September 2, 2014

Blogging for FOUR years // Top 10 posts


As of this month, I have been blogging for FOUR years now.  It is kind of great, I don't really have any true 'hobbies' so this kind of serves that purpose and I have surprised myself that I have stuck with it this long.

I like blogging. I love that I can look back and see pictures of Ben and I as newlyweds, our first apartment, our first Valentines Day, look to see how I was feeling at 20 weeks pregnant, and look to see was it 6 or 7 months when Everett was sitting on his own?

I also just like to vent, write, talk, gossip, share and put down my feelings and thoughts, whether it's about motherhood, Vampire Diaries, Everett, the book I am reading, etc. My blog has become such an outlet for me, a time capsule that I love.  For a minute there I was trying to really grow my blog and get a million followers and make it big (hahaha) but it was so so much work and time and money and it started to lose the wonder and fun for me, so here I am just doing it for me and my family and you know, my future posterity.

I thought I would share my top 10  favorite and most viewed posts I have written in the past four years  (274 posts yo!).

That one time I 'came out' about my pretty impressive TV addiction. The only thing that has changed is there are more beloved shows in my line up now.

This list of 10 things I love, but everyone else hates is kind of stupid and kind of random but I still like it.
And this list of 10 things I love about Canada is pretty awesome, although I cringe at how bad my photoshop skills were back then.  To this day I still get like 200 views a week on this post and I have no idea why?!

This post of little things I want to remember, and then this one of sorta the same silly little things are kind of presh.
.
All the ways I am becoming just like my mother , a special ode to my dad on fathers day and a special shout out to my special little sister Hailey.

I graduated from BYU and wrote a post about 'wish I knew then, what I know now' about BYU secrets and college in general.

How Ben and I fell in Love at Chili's Bar and Grill

Everett's Birth Story

These observations of a new mom part one, part two, part three are really fun.  Also in the same category a series of unfortunate events and how my baby is just like a boyfriend.

A memory filled post of my beloved family cabin in Waterton, Alberta.

Maybe my favorite post yet, just after Everett turned one year, the things I had learnt so far about being a mom.  Wish I knew then, what I know now.

I have also really loved doing the 52 project this year: a picture of my child once a week, every week for a year.

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