Happy Friday!

Hey there! Happy Friday. I hope you guys have had a good week – mine has been good, it’s felt really long but overall it’s been a pretty good week! Work is busy, life is busy, life with a toddler is fun and a little crazy and well I haven’t had much to say around here in a lot longer than I would like. Sorry about that… definitely, my bad. So what’s up? A lot, but also nothing at the same time. Mostly just run of the mill life stuff…

Two weeks ago I became an Aunt for the first time and I have to say I love it. When I was pregnant with Sydney I loved her from the second I found out we were having a baby and that love grew and grew until she made her entrance in to the world and my heart nearly exploded with all the love I felt for her. We had been patiently (& then not so patiently when she was a week late) waiting for baby H to come in to this world and she finally made her appearance with some force but she’s here, she’s healthy, and she’s amazing. I can’t believe how much love I have for that little nugget already but boy am I glad she’s apart of our lives and our family. I have been in Heaven with her in my arms (the fever is real folks!)

Sydney meets Baby H for the first time.

Sydney meets Baby H for the first time.

Sydney was enamored with her the first day (seriously. that face. she was amazed that the baby we’ve been talking about for months was a real baby!) and then we gave her a new baby doll “from baby H” and she was more excited about that than anything. By Sunday she was helping Grammie feed the baby and then wanted to take her own turn with “holding” the baby. It was adorable. Sydney actually sat really still with her and did not want to let her go for a second. I have no doubt that these two will grow up to be the best of friends. I can hardly wait to see them actually play together.

Shopping with Nana

Shopping with Nana

Sydney and I had a girls day with my mom – we did a little shopping. While I was browsing, my mom was in charge of keeping an eye on the toddler running amuck… I turned around and this is what I saw. I remember FREAKING my mom out when I was little by playing in the racks of clothes while she shopped but now apparently my mom thinks it’s awesome. I have a feeling Sydney is going to pay me back tenfold now that she thinks this is a game!

Shopper in training.

Shopper in training.

Sydney was quite the little helper when we were out shopping with my mom. She took that bag from me and wanted to carry it… for like a minute. And then she wanted it in the stroller. Not on the handle, but in the seat. So then I was pushing around a shopping bag while she ran around like a crazy person. I’m sure we were a sight to see!

Helping Papa with the snow!

Helping Papa with the snow!

We got some snow earlier this week and Sydney was a delighted big helper as my ILs shoveled out their driveway. I hate the snow very much and I have this fear that this little girl will love it so much that we will be out playing in it every chance she gets. Anything to make her happy… as long as I can get some hot chocolate as a reward haha!

That's how glasses work...

That’s how glasses work…

Sydney has been playing (much to her chagrin) with my MILs glasses… she likes to wear them & then “work” on the computer (while she’s really watching Mickey Mouse Club House… preferably her favorite Minnie episode!). Thankfully, MIL only uses reading glasses so they’re just magnifiers but we do try to encourage her to NOT play with them on her eyes so they don’t do any damage and also so she doesn’t think glasses are toys since there are quite a few of us who need them for real!

So that’s what’s up around here… exciting right? I know you wish you had my exciting life! What’s been going on with you… I’d love to hear from you!

Advertisements

Oh Hey Friday.

LThis Friday feels very much needed this week. I never realize how hard coming back after two partial work weeks in a row can be until that first full week of work feels like it is never going to end. Except this week I had a work-from-home snow day thrown in there so maybe next week will feel longer than this week. I wish I hadn’t just thought of that haha. Oh well, moving on.

I can’t actually remember the last time I “resolved” to do something for a whole year. I do not believe I have that type of attention span. I do have some goals in mind that I’d like to work on this year. They’re nothing life changing, I guess, but maybe they will be.

One.

Write a book. I have always had this dream of writing a book – ever since I was younger, I’ve always wanted to be a novelist. I have so many notebooks filled with my random ramblings that I figure one day maybe I’ll actually do something with them. Part of the reason I blog is because I love writing and putting my thoughts out there on the internet for the world to read at will is helping me to conquer this fear I have of actually writing a book that people might actually read. I recently put pen to paper (literally) and started writing a book that has been an idea in my head for a few months now. I don’t know that I have any real expectations as far as it being the next best seller or anything like that but I would like to say, one day, that I wrote a book.

Book writing in progress.

Book writing in progress.

Two.

Move. We have been talking about and planning to move “next year” since we had Sydney. In 2012. The distance between our home and our jobs + family is about an hour. When we first moved out here we loved it – and it isn’t that we don’t love our home or the area but it is that our lives have changed and our situation has changed and living out here is no longer something we love as much. When we first brought up the subject, right after Sydney was born, I was an emotional, hormonal mess. I wasn’t ready to leave the house so we put it on the back burner. In the last few months, especially with my new job, it just feels so much more right for us to move. I’m ready now. Technically, I’ve been preparing for this with all my purging efforts but we do have a couple projects we need to complete before we can do anything with the house. We’re still not completely decided on whether or not we will rent or sell our house because a couple houses are up for sale, and have been, for a while and I’m not sure how long I want to sit on our house when I’m so ready to move (& so uninterested in keeping it “show” quality for too long – there’s the real truth folks. I think I’m too messy to sell our house haha.)

Three.

Learn something new. I’m not sure what yet. I think I want to learn how to crochet. I tried knitting and that was hard and I have heard crocheting is easier & easier means that I’ll actually do it because I get annoyed and frustrating when something is too hard for me to figure out and I tend to give up on those annoying and hard things so if crocheting is easier than annoying & hard knitting maybe I won’t give up on crocheting. I do have intentions of taking a class with a friend of mine so that is definitely “learning something new.” And maybe I’ll decide this is the year I go back to school (for what? no clue… that’s why I haven’t done it yet.) The possibilities are endless and I’m excited to pick up a new skill or craft.

Four.

Do more stuff. We live in an area with so many opportunities to do stuff – from exploring the Shenandoah Valley, to spending time at our favorite winery or exploring a new winery, to getting our butts in to DC and taking it in. There are festivals and fairs and other random stuff going on that we can experience but we generally do not. I want to get out and do stuff. I hate to be constantly on the go, but at the same time I get super bored when we don’t do anything but sit around the house. I want to take advantage of the stuff around us and go out and explore. Plus, I think it would be good for Sydney to get out and see more of the world around her. I understand that she’s still little but we don’t necessarily have to do stuff that she won’t be interested in (or well behaved for). I want to do stuff with her and without her. I don’t have anything specific in mind but let me tell you this year I’m doing stuff.

Five.

Day one of Insanity Max 30.

Day one of Insanity Max 30.

Stay active. Last year I found a love of Beachbody products – from Shakeology to a variety of the workouts they offer (I have tried, and loved, 21 Day Fix; T25; PiYo; and Insanity Max 30). I started running again for the first time since before I got pregnant. I got active and I feel great about myself. I really let my love for Oreos dominate my pregnancy with Sydney and then I let having a baby be my excuse for being as lazy as possible so even though I was able to shed my pregnancy weight I never quite got the motivation to actually be healthier. I have spent countless hours “getting strong” (which is what I am trying to convey to Sydney because I don’t have any “I’m fat and need to lose weight” feelings about myself so I don’t want her to grow up thinking her Mom was so in to working out to be skinny but rather I wanted to be strong… we’ll see how that works out haha). She likes to “work” with me and will bring me my shoes, my yoga mat, or my weights. Sometimes, if I’m doing something like yoga or sometime that just involves jumping, she’ll get in to it with me. I’m currently working my way through Insanity Max 30 and it’s hard. So hard. But a good kind of hard that makes me feel pretty awesome (& a lot like jelly) when I’m done. When I’m done with this program I want to work running back in to my routine (it’s cold so I prefer inside workouts where it is warm and I do not feel like I’m freezing to death.) I want to run a 5k this year (currently running around a 10 minute mile on average) so we’ll see how that works out because I do have a history of running injuries so the last thing I want to do is push my body to run a 5k when it really shouldn’t. So while running a 5k is something I really want to do it is also something I am perfectly fine with letting pass me by to keep myself healthy & my body happy.

So there you have it. Five random things I am hoping to focus on this year. I’m kind of excited to see where this year takes us. I know it’s taking us somewhere I just don’t know where that is yet.

Oh Hey Friday.

Hey Friday! Boy am I happy to see you. This week has been pretty good for me – work is going really well and my days are so full of stuff I enjoy that they are going pretty quickly. This week we’re wrapping up the work week with a holiday luncheon which makes me think about all the holiday things that I love and this weeks list…

Five things I love about this holiday season.

One.

Peppermint everything. I’m a sucker for a seasonal treat and much like my pumpkin obsession in the fall I have the same obsession in the winter with peppermint. Peppermint milkshake from CFA; Peppermint Mocha from Starbucks; Peppermint bark… you get the idea. Bring on the peppermint. I’m actually considering making a peppermint treat for Christmas. From scratch. That’s when you know I’m serious.

Two.

Decorating my house for the holidays. Steve claims I go overboard but I tend to disagree. He may be right, because it does usually take me like a whole day to decorate our house – when I do the house and the tree at the same time – but this year it didn’t take quite that long. Whatever, I don’t care that it looks like the holidays threw up in our house because our house looks too pretty for me to care about that.

Oh Christmas Tree.

Oh Christmas Tree.

This year I have toned down my decorating considerably because there is a tiny toddler roaming about that may be hazardous to my decorations. Sydney loves the tree – when we come home every day she wants to turn on the “light light” on the tree! It is awesome to see her so excited. I know that she doesn’t really know what’s going on this year, but the excitement on her face this year is priceless.

Three.

I love that we celebrate both Christmas and Hanukkah. Steve is Jewish and I’m Catholic so we each have our own traditions but we’ve combined them to honor each of our families and our traditions. I think it’s going to be really awesome for Sydney to grow up understanding both religions and their traditions.

Hanukkah 2013.

Hanukkah 2013.

Four.

I love holiday parties. I’m not sure we’re going to any this year, but last year we went to an Ugly Sweater party that was a freaking blast. Maybe next year we’ll throw our own holiday party… this year we’ve got a bit too much on our plate for me to have even entertained the idea of throwing a party.

Ugly Sweater Party.

Ugly Sweater Party.

Five.

Presents. Because duh. Who doesn’t love presents? I actually really love to buy presents for people because I love seeing their reactions when they open their gifts. I enjoy gifts the most when you can tell that the giver put some serious thought in to the gift – no matter what it is, it definitely means a lot when you know someone thought it was perfect for you.

Presents!

Presents!

In case you were wondering why “spending time with my family” isn’t on here it’s because that answer to “what do you love about the holidays” is apparently very annoying to my sweet husband. To him, when he hears that answer, he thinks that it means you hate them for the whole rest of the year. I do really enjoy getting some extra special family time during the holidays but I do also enjoy their company the whole year.

Happy Friday everyone! I hope your weekend is wonderful.

Oh Hey Friday.

WHAT IS UP FRIDAY!

Man am I glad to see you. I don’t know why this week has felt so long but it has and I’m glad for this weekend. It could also have something to do with next week being my birthday week and who doesn’t love celebrating their birthday!? I definitely do.

Anyway. Lately I’ve been all about changing up my wardrobe and this Friday’s five things revolve around some new outfit looks that I’m digging on lately.

One.

I am a classic jeans and a t-shirt kind of girl so this jeans and sweater outfit makes the perfect fall/winter combo for me.

Two.

This would be great for work. It looks comfortable but still professional. I actually found quite a bit of work-style inspiration from that site. I got lost there for just a little bit, but in a good way.

Three.

Ok so I wouldn’t ever wear those heels because I don’t really enjoy falling on my face which is what they would make me do but that skirt and that cardigan are right up my alley. It’s cute and definitely something I’m hoping I can re-create one day (when its warm, because I also don’t care for tights so this is definitely not a cold weather outfit for me haha)

Four.

Source.

Source.

This I am pretty sure I could actually pull off based on what is in my closet. I should probably be focusing on looking for outfits I can pull together with what I have since I’m always “I have nothing to wear” but that isn’t nearly as fun as pretend shopping on Pinterest haha.

As a note, I have no idea where this picture really comes from because I got it from Pinterest but it takes me to an Etsy shop for a scarf…which isn’t even pictured in this picture so I have no idea who to give credit for it so if you do then please let me know so I can give appropriate credit.

Five.

And then there is this wonderfully comfortable looking outfit. I have basically been living in leggings since the weather turned cooler and since the weather is basically running towards cold I’m pairing them with sweaters and boots now. Which is sad. Because it’s November. But I don’t care because I look adorable and comfortable.

And there you have it. There are 5 outfits I’m hoping to be able to re-create with some pieces I already own now that I’ve gone through my closet and know that everything in it actually fits, I like, and looks good on me.

Oh Hey Friday.

To round out Sydney’s birthday week, and since I’ve been very wordy this week, I thought I would share five pictures of Sydney that I really love.

I had a really hard time choosing these pictures because I am obviously going to love nearly all the photos of her that I take… but these are just a couple that I really love.

One.

Newborn Sydney.

Newborn Sydney.

Two.

Big girl on the big slide!

Big girl on the big slide!

Three.

Running with Grammie.

Running with Grammie.

Four.

Playing with Mama.

Playing with Mama.

Five.

Cheese face.

Cheese face.

And a bonus family photo.

Family love <3

Family love ❤

Happy Friday everyone.

I can’t believe tonight I kiss my 1 year old good night for the last time.

There’s probably going to be some tears. And some wine. And definitely some party prep. Did I mention wine? Yes, there will be wine.

I hope you enjoy your weekend. I know we will enjoy celebrating our sweet Sydney Grace.

Oh Hey Friday. Halloween Edition.

HAPPY HALLOWEEN!

I am so ready for tonight. We’re taking Sydney TOTing for the first time and I think she’s going to be super excited about 2 things. The candy (because duh, who wouldn’t) and the pumpkins (because she’s obsessed). So in honor of Halloween I’m dishing out five random Halloween facts you probably know but maybe you don’t.

One.

This is the cutest ladybug ever. Obviously.

IMG_7419

(and please ignore the random patched part of our wall… Buddy chewed our wall. Seriously. It’s also been there for much longer than I’d care to actually admit. Shamefully.)

Two.

Halloween is the second highest grossing commercial holiday. After Christmas of course.

Which makes total sense. That costume? $20 (but thanks to Cartwheel and my RedCard it was only $12). She will wear it once. But I also had to buy a black shirt and pants to go with it because Halloween is a cold weather holiday around here and I want her to be warm. Plus all the candy we buy? Yeah. Halloween is an expensive day. Worth it, but expensive. Just like Christmas.

Three.

“Souling” is a medieval Christian precursor to modern-day trick-or-treating. On Hallowmas (November 1), the poor would go door-to-door offering prayers for the dead in exchange for soul cakes

Four.

Irish legend has it that one day the devil himself came to take the soul of a thieving man named Jack. But Jack managed to trick the devil, making him promise to never take his soul. After eventually living a long life, Jack tried to enter the Pearly Gates, but could not, for he had lived a life of evil. He then attempted to enter Hell, but the devil kept his word, being no big fan of Jack anyway. When Jack complained of having no way to see, the devil laughed at him and threw him a glowing ember, which he fashioned into a lantern using a turnip in his pocket. He became Jack Of The Lantern, doomed to aimlessly walk the Earth with nowhere to go. While the legends may sound incredible, they were based on a real phenomenon. Swamp gasses that interact with decaying matter will sometimes give off a strange light that seems to vanish when you get closer. Before we had a scientific explanation, people believed these were trapped souls who could enter neither heaven nor hell and would lead you astray. Some legends say the Irish would use turnips or beets to create jack-o’-lanterns—for multiple purposes. The lanterns were sometimes used as a means of honoring those souls trapped in purgatory, but their mocking faces were also used to scare away evil spirits.

Five.

A 1951 Peanuts comic strip can be credited with the popular spread of trick or treating as we know it nationwide. So dress up as Snoopy if you want to be historically accurate.

I, for one, love the movie It’s the Great Pumpkin Charlie Brown and so there was no way I wasn’t including this tiny tid-bit.

I probably spent way too much time researching five random Halloween facts… all the sources for these facts are below because the only one I can take credit for is Number One. She looks too much like me to deny her 😉 If you’re bored visit those sites… some of these things I legitimately didn’t know and some of them I’ve heard in similar versions.

I hope everyone has a safe and wonderful Halloween!

(source for two and three. source for four. source for five.)

Oh Hey Friday.

Oh Friday you are my favorite day of the week. Lately my weeks have felt very long and our weekends have been very busy so I’m hoping to have a pretty relaxing weekend which means I don’t have five random things to tell you that I’m going to jam pack my weekend full of so instead I’m giving you five random things I’ve recently come to know (and a bonus fact. and a recipe. because I’m feeling generous today).

One.

Apparently, the Pumpkin Spice Latte almost wasn’t created because the test market gave it a lackluster rating. I can’t even believe this and while I know that if it wasn’t created that I wouldn’t be sad because I wouldn’t know any better but knowing that it almost wasn’t created makes me sad about the possibility of living without the delicious PSL.

Two.

Did you know that the term equinox comes from the Latin for “equal night.” I didn’t. It makes sense now that I’ve seen it written out (bonus fact: I took Latin in high school. I was terrible at it but some random stuff stuck with me about words and such).

Three.

Spaghetti squash might be my new favorite fall veggie. Sydney loves spaghetti so I made this in hopes that I could trick her. Too bad I’d never eaten it before so I didn’t know it wasn’t going to be like real spaghetti. It definitely did not trick my toddler in to thinking she was getting spaghetti but it was delicious and I’m ready to make some more.

Spaghetti squash.

Spaghetti squash.

Also these directions are really not that great. I bought this particular squash because they had directions on them and since I’d never made it I would definitely need directions. I ended up doing some googling because I was trying to convince Steve that I did, in fact, need to take out the middle/seed part like you would on a pumpkin… and that’s when I found different instructions.

  • Preheat oven to 400
  • cut squash in half (lengthwise) and remove stringy/seedy part in middle (like the guts from the pumpkin but don’t remove the flesh because that’s the part you eat)
  • season flesh with olive oil, salt and pepper
  • place face down in pan (I used a pan with sides but you could use a baking sheet)
  • Cook for about 40 minutes until squash is tender
  • Shred squash flesh with a fork in to a bowl
  • Season with salt/pepper/Parmesan cheese to taste
  • Eat and enjoy!

Four.

My mom managed to get us (her & I) tickets to take Sydney to see Frozen on Ice because a coworker of hers had them for his family but recently found out they’d be unable to go.

Frozen on Ice!!

Frozen on Ice!!

I am so excited. SO EXCITED. I loved the movie and I’ve heard really good things about Disney on Ice in general so I think it’ll be a good time. We’re not really sure if Sydney will do well or not… it’s kind of late (7pm…) but it should be full of excitement that we’re hoping it’ll keep her engaged. She tends to do well in later evening situations if she’s got something keeping her attention. Like if we’re sitting at home and she’s bored she’s full on toddler but if we’re busy doing something then she doesn’t seem to notice she’s tired (or that she should be tired). I think no matter how she does it’ll be a fun time for the 3 of us because who doesn’t love spending time with Nana?! No one. That’s who.

Five.

We’ve been eating apples a lot this season. I love apples and thankfully so does Sydney. Right now it seems to be her favorite healthy snack & she’ll ask for them all the time (though sometimes she is asking for the delicious Caramel Apple Oreo and I honestly can’t blame her because I did just refer to them as delicious so we can see where I stand on that one. And I don’t think a sweet treat hurts now and again so there). Anyway… we love apples in our house and my favorite is the Honeycrisp. They’re expensive so I only buy one or two a week and fill up on other kinds (any kinds really, there isn’t really a type of apple out there that I like so since the stores generally put different ones on sale each week we get a pretty good variety of apples in our house). I recently read this article about The Story Behind Honeycrisp Apples and why the prices of them are so expensive (because they’re like designer apples at $2.99 a pound in my stores). It was kind of an interesting read (for me, maybe you think that’s boring) but it was kind of neat to realize that just because you think something should be much cheaper than it is doesn’t mean it can be simply for what it needs to properly grow. And these are delicious apples that I don’t mind paying a little lot extra for if that’s really what it costs to grow them.

Although… I am curious about this SweeTango apple they mention in this article. I’m going to have to check the stores around here to see if I can get my hands on some. Either way – go get yourself some Honeycrisp apples. Because they’re delicious and if I’m not mistaken they have a short growing season so they’re likely going to be gone soon and we’ll be waiting until next year to get our hands on those yummy apples.

 

And with those five random things… I hope everyone has a beautiful weekend.