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Friday, January 20, 2017

3 Things You Need to Know About.

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cheap heart sunglasses

1. These mirrored heart sunglasses. Sometimes I think I have become a grown up. I shop at Banana Republic, I stick to a budget, I take a multivitamin, I wake up early to work out and check emails. Adult stuff. And then sometimes I wear mirrored heart sunglasses and realize, nope. I'm all about things that make you happy, and wanna know what makes me happy? Wearing these babies by the pool. Bonus: They're $12. So when you drop them/scratch them/your kid yanks them off your face and breaks them (just me?), you won't feel sick over it. Literal heart eyes.

2. These black & rose gold NikesThese were a Christmas gift from Chris and they're my favorite tennis shoe, if not just favorite shoe in general, that I've ever owned. They go with everything (hello, black) but the Nike check (is that what it's called?) is the prettiest rose gold and makes them way better than a plain black shoe. I'm probably not the only one who, on more than one occasion, would have really loved to wear tennis shoes for comfort's sake, but I didn't want to ruin a cute outfit with colorful running shoes that just didn't fit. Enter these. I have no idea how I didn't have black Nikes before this, because I really wear them almost every day.

As far as they hold up for running, I have no answer for you. Check back in 2018. Maybe I'll have gone for a run by then (but also probably not).

3. Sweet potatoes and buffalo sauce. This sounded disgusting to me. But last week I made shredded buffalo chicken (cook chicken breasts+buffalo sauce in the crockpot, then shred and eat all week long), and I put it over a sweet potato. It. Was. Amazing. Anything that is that easy and tastes that good and I can call healthy is a win for me.

Here's hoping you find those three little bits of information as exciting as I did. Now you tell me: What do I need to know about?

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Thursday, January 19, 2017

I Want to Remember 2017: Part One.

When I was pregnant, I did weekly posts about things I never want to forget. Little details that seemed mundane, but that I wanted to remember. Being pregnant was very difficult for me physically,  and it was very easy to get overwhelmed with how much that made everything suck. But having those weekly posts about the good things helped me focus on the good, and now when I look back, I have all of these good memories.

I want to treat 2017 like that. Life is a special occasion and the little, mundane moments are worth remembering.

I kicked off the new year with a trip to the library, where Jack protested the whole "quiet" rule. It's the first time I've left with a bunch of books I know next to nothing about, which has actually been kind of fun! 

I've started walking Jack over to the pool almost every day. Sometimes early in the morning, sometimes when it's time for him to nap, sometimes when the sun is setting. He loves to be outside and look at the water, and we both benefit from the fresh air. 

Speaking of the pool: This picture was taken on a Saturday. An 80 degree and sunny Saturday and it was completely empty. Hardly anyone uses our neighborhood pool, so when we go, we have the whole thing to ourselves 95 percent of the time, which is so nice.

We had a little burst of cool weather and took advantage of it by spending the day walking around and making our babies take pictures in front of all the cool walls, as any good mom would do.

Chris got home early one day (DOES NOT HAPPEN!) which meant we could make it to an actual happy hour, which meant we ate this giant pretzel for dinner. It was so delicious and I can't stop thinking about it. 

It got cold enough to need sweaters and hats! A rarity for Florida. 

Life is full of little things worth celebrating-tell me yours about 2017 so far! 

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Tuesday, January 17, 2017

8 Things to Say No to This Year.

1. Attributing motive to someone else's actions. I am so bad at this. I am constantly assuming other people's motives. When a friend doesn't respond to my texts for a few days, I assume she now hates me and we'll never hang out again and that's why she's not responding. When I don't get a lot of work emails I assume I'm getting fired and that's why they're pulling back. When I meet someone new and they immediately take a phone call, I assume it was fake and they just didn't want to talk to me. And on, and on, and on. 

Ascribing motive to someone else just makes you crazy. Just assume the best and move on.

2. Clutter. There's a reason you feel fresh and peaceful when you're in a clean space and stressed and overwhelmed when you're in a cluttered space. If you don't use it, give it away. It'll only stress you out taking up room in that extra closet. 

3. Viewing something you enjoy as wasting time. If you are enjoying the time, the time is not wasted. Watch that TV show, sit by the pool, read your book, enjoy your life.

4. Eating like crap just because it's convenient. Take care of yourself. You are worth the effort it takes to eat healthier. 

5. Valuing other's opinions about you more than your own. Should you listen to what those who love you have to say? Absolutely. Should you try to learn from outside criticism? Yes. Should you take what other people say about you to be the one and only truth? No. Considering you are the one who actually lives your life, your opinion should be of the highest value. 

6. Being solely future-minded. When you're constantly thinking about what comes next, you miss all the good that's happening now. Simple as that. 

7.  Doing things because you feel like you have to. Within reason. You should probably still do your laundry. And pay your mortgage. But volunteering, or staying late at work when you don't have to, or going to every happy hour you're invited to...nope. Not this year. 

8. Answering compliments with negativity. Why is it that when someone compliments you, it's a first instinct to talk yourself down? You look so pretty gets answered with Thanks, but my hair's a mess today. I can tell you've been working out gets answered with Yeah, but I've still got a long way to go. Being complimented on a job well done gets answered with what could have been better. 

Stop. Doing. This. "Thank you" works as a full sentence. 

What are you saying "no" to this year?
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Monday, January 16, 2017

Honestly, This is All of Us When We Eat Cake.

Over the weekend, my sweet little buddy turned one. ONE. It blows my mind that 365 short days can turn this: 
into this: 
C R A Z Y  T O W N.
Anyway, we celebrated in the only way that anyone can ever hope to celebrate their birthday, meaning that he ate Chick-Fil-A while wearing a crown. Coincidentally, I know now how I wish to celebrate my next birthday. 

I waited too long to order a birthday crown off of Etsy but lucked out and found this one (affiliate link) on Amazon. It was $7 and I was a little worried but it got here in 2 days and looked adorable. 

He got his first kid's meal and loved it (duh). But most importantly, he had cake for the first time.

Now, while I expected him having cake for the first time to be exciting for me, I expected it to go one of two ways: 1) Him not care one single bit, or 2) Him freak the heckkkkkk out. The second is probably because when my little brother turned one, he stuck his hand in his blue icing and screamed bloody murder when he saw that his hand had suspiciously turned blue.

What I did not expect, however, was for him to freaking love it. 

PS: Let us not discuss the appearance of the actual cake, or the fact that when I put icing on it, it literally melted the cake. Moving on.

We started off with this: 

And then moved on to this: 
And then this: 
And then ended up here:
And if we're being honest, isn't that face kind of all of us when we're eating cake? Or brunch. Or pizza. 
Happy Monday, friends. I hope your day is wonderful and includes something that makes you as happy as cake makes Jack. 
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Friday, January 13, 2017

Letters to Jack: One Year.


Tomorrow you turn one. A whole year. 365 days I have known you. 365 days you have been in my life, changing me for the better, stretching me into a new person. 365 days I have loved you. 365 days I have been a mama. 

I had a long, long list of fears before you were born. Deep fears: That I wasn't adequate enough to be a good mom for you, that I wouldn't know what to do, that I was somehow behind because I hadn't spent years planning your arrival. And shallow fears, too: That I wouldn't be able to have a life anymore, that we wouldn't get to do fun things anymore, that Chris and I wouldn't really love being parents. 

Not a single one of those fears came true, deep or shallow. 

You are the best, best thing in the whole world. Our daily walks and trips to the pool and park dates where you belly laugh when pushed in the swings are treasures I never knew I was hunting for. 

You took your first steps on Wednesday...three shaky little steps before falling, and I caught you. You did it again, falling harder, and I caught you again. After a while, you realized you could be brave and keep trying and fall even harder because I was right there to catch you. 

I know you can't understand everything just yet, but I hope you understand this: That you are loved beyond explanation, and that I will always, always be there to catch you. 

Happy birthday, my little love. It will be the greatest privilege of my life to get to do this seventeen more times with you. 

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Thursday, January 12, 2017

Fifty-Two Weeks With Jack: Allll of The Pictures.

Somehow, we have arrived at the end of my #weekswithjack picture project. Fifty-two weeks later and my first little love is now a GROWN ADULT (No, YOU'RE being dramatic). 

Week forty-five: 
you love being outside in the sunshine // I don't know why I think this is so funny, but it makes me laugh whenever I see it // VERY unsure about the whole teeth brushing thing // the happiest babe there ever was. 

Week forty-six:
your first thanksgiving! // caught you trying to sneak a peek at your Christmas present // aaaand had to start child-proofing the next day // you loved decorating for Christmas

Week forty-seven:
I love our park dates // you're happy anywhere with a swing // your first time at Universal for Christmas was a success // your first time meeting the Grinch, however, was not such a hit haha

Week forty-eight:
we learned the hard way about wrapping presents unwrapped them and ate the paper // and when you moved on from that, you took all the baby wipes out and tried to eat those, too // we took you to look at Christmas lights and your face lit up with such awe that it made me cry // you're so happy to wake up every single morning

if we give you a warm blanket, you'll put yourself right to sleep // just a little Santa in the sink // love our little fam // you did NOT love Santa. 

Week Fifty:
we started a new tradition of going to the park before we kick off Christmas // and stopping at chick-fil-a on the way to visit family // you got to see what it was like to experience Christmas as the only grandchild // and then we had the most perfect Christmas, just the three of us, and you got your new favorite ride. 

Week fifty-one:
we don't get cold weather often, but you love it when we do // this is your new favorite blanket, and when you're tired you just take your bottle and crawl right over to it and go to sleep // practicing your four-wheeling skills // you have enough teeth (and are hungry enough) that we have to buy an extra order of chicken nuggets for're pretty happy about it

Week fifty-two:
baby date! // just a little stud lounging by the pool // you do SO great in the nursery...this is how I found you when I went to pick you up on Sunday // we take walks almost every day, and you're so content to just sit by the pool and drink your bottle. 

I don't know who has changed more in these fifty-two weeks...Jack or me. But I know they've been the best, they've been a privilege, and I will cherish them for the rest of my life. 

Bring on toddlerhood...I'm (nowhere near) ready for you! 

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Tuesday, January 10, 2017

Halfway Through Intern Year: Some Honest Thoughts.

In case you're new here: My husband graduated medical school in May and we moved to Gainesville for him to start surgery residency. Intern year in surgery is supposedly the worst thing ever, blah blah blah, okay now you're up to speed. 

I've promised to write honestly in this space about the things I know about. I wrote honestly about what it was like to have an unplanned pregnancy (I still get mean emails about that, by the way), about what it was like waiting for Match Day and being married to a med student. etc. I'll write honestly about parenthood and residency and any other thing I experience. There's no sense in making something out to be rainbows and butterflies if it's not, and there's no point in going along with a negative stereotype if it's untrue. 

So, in the spirit of all that honesty, I thought I'd give a little update about life halfway through Chris' intern year. 

It is both somehow worse than and way better than I expected. Chris is the greatest dad. When Jack was born, he was on a break between school and residency and he did everything. He woke up at night with me, washed Jack's bottles, cooked us dinner, everything. We were 50/50 co-parents and it was wonderful. So I say intern year was worse than I expected because no matter how you try, there's no way you can actually prepare yourself for going from having an all-in partner to months where you see said partner for a (very sleepy, groggy) hour a day and suddenly everything else falls to you. It's tough. 

But it's also been better than I expected. There have been months where I've seen him way more than I thought. We've gone to the beach and to Universal. We got to celebrate Christmas. We get date nights and can have people over. This weekend we went to church and brunch and then built a firepit in our backyard. I did not expect to ever be able to have those kinds of weekends, and that's a really nice surprise. 

Take everything you hear with a grain of salt (even this). I cannot count the number of times I have heard someone say how having kids during intern year is the worst decision ever. Sometimes someone will actually say this to my face before their brain registers the fact that the baby I am currently holding is probably mine, and that's always awkward. 

I think having a baby this year has been awesome. He's kept me so busy! Now, if I didn't have a baby, would I think this was a good year to do that? Absolutely not. Point is, everyone is doing what they think is best, and that's the advice they want to pass on to others. Some of that will be great advice, and some of that will be great for them, but not for you. Smile and say thank you and then do what you think is best. 

Not everyone will understand, and that's okay. This one has been harder than I expected. I think we just all want someone to understand what we're going through, and it's frustrating when friends or even family don't understand. I have friends outside the medical world who don't understand why I can't say yes or no to dinner that weekend because I have no idea what Chris' schedule will be. We've had family get upset that we can't come to a birthday party. It is what it is, not everyone will understand and that's okay. Be irritated and then move on. But this brings us to...

You have to find your people. I'll be honest, I hit the jackpot on this one. I've made a friend who lives two streets over from me who's husband is also in intern year. Having someone who does understand does wonders for your sanity. One of the first times she was over for dinner I got a phone call with news that literally brought me to my knees, and instead of being awkward and polite she went into crisis mode with me and asked, "What do you need? Here, I'll watch Jack. Do you need me to drive you somewhere?" Because she understood that just because I got bad news didn't mean Chris could just decide to not go in to work the next day. 

Find someone like that. I know making new friends is hard. I know it's awkward to step out of your comfort zone. But whether you're married to an intern or you have some other sort of stressful lifestyle, find someone who understands. It makes a world of difference.

No year is all bad or all good. This is something Steph said to me in regards to 2016, and it really rang true for me in relation to intern year. Have there been some very sucky parts to the last six months? Absolutely. But have we made some really great memories in between those? Yes. Will I be glad when it's over? For sure! But will I write the year off as a waste? Not in a million years. It's been a year with my family, and no matter what, that is a blessing.

One day at a time. When all else fails, take it one day at a time. At the beginning, I decided I would take things one rotation (four weeks) at a time. That got too hard, so I switched to one week at a time, and here we are at one day at a time. You can handle anything for one day. 

Is your life anything like this? I want to hear your honest thoughts, too!
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