Monday, July 6, 2015

Spray paint secrets for a $50 furniture makeover

I am guest posting on {{An Alaska Life}} talking about how I repurposed my server. To see the process click {{here}}.

It's better out here

Call me crazy but I love camping, and I mean tent, sleeping bags, fire pit kind of camping, so I was a bit apprehensive about doing all that with a 13 month old in tow.
As it turns out, toddlers belong in the outdoors, wild unpredictable creatures they are. Benjamin loved the dirt, the firewood, the lake, the s'mores, and to my surprise, he slept in a tent better than I have ever seen him sleep at home. So much so, that I am considering putting a tent in the patio at home and letting him rough it! 

{I'm kidding, please don't report me to OCS}

We had 6 adults and 6 children, and everyone managed to have a most excellent 4th of July weekend. We made our way to Seward to watch the Mount Marathon race, to cheer on those champs, and to get inspired for the half-marathon I'm about to race in a couple of weeks.

We are thankful to live in a country and a state with so much natural beauty available to all. It was a weekend for the books!

Maiden tent.

It's better out here.

Can I have s'more? 

Sweetest thing ever.

Alaska wild child indeed.

Happy 4th of July!

Sunday, June 28, 2015

Oh baby!

Who would have thought that only a year after I welcomed my baby I would be throwing a baby shower for my college partner-in-crime, Kristin. 
I cannot wait for baby Owen to make his entrance into the world this August, and I know everyone who attended the shower feels the same way. Because really, what's better than brand new baby goodness? Absolutely nothing.

I love you Kristin, and I hope you know how loved and wanted Owen is already. I am so very excited for you to embrace and enjoy motherhood. A year from now Ben will be teaching Owen how to walk!   May God grant you and Derrick wisdom, patience, kindness, and love to raise this baby. The best is truly yet to come!

P.S. Cupcakes by Amy Anderson
P.P.S. Flower arrangements by {{Natasha Price}}

Thursday, June 18, 2015

So, how's daycare?

People ask me these days how I feel about Ben being in daycare. Questions range from 'do you feel free?' to 'is it hard?' and 'do you feel like a bad mother?' The answer to all is, yes. 

There is freedom to be found in having HOURS to myself. I am able to take long showers, and finish my coffee while it's hot, and sometimes even {gasp} read a book. There is freedom in weaning that baby. Yes, yes, I am aware that the W.H.O. recommends 2 years of breastfeeding, but for us 13 months was long enough, and for that time I am giving myself a gold-star.

It is hard to leave him, but it's not just at daycare. It's hard to leave him with a sitter, with a friend, or with anyone who is not Tim or my mom. Leaving my baby is always hard, especially when he cries and grabs my shirt so I don't let go. It breaks my heart in two, I hold it together until I'm out the door, then I cry too, and I pray to the good Lord to watch over him, to protect him, and to make sure that I am not scarring him for life.

And yes, sometimes I do feel like a bad mother, but I also know that I am not a bad mother. I am a damn good mother, and so are you, whether you stay at home or not, most of us are doing our best. The mothers I know are loving and kind, and want to raise loving, kind children, and they would all take a bullet for their kids.

Two days a week, for a few hours I get to be on my own, and it feels good and bad, strange and freeing. He's making friends, growing, and learning how to navigate the world without mom, while I am re-learning to be by myself, and we are both thrilled to see each other again when I pick him up. Maybe distance does make the heart grow fonder, even if just for a few hours at the time.

Monday, June 15, 2015

Heat and sick babes don't mix

dress: Sonnet James, sandals: Cork-Ease, sunnies: Madewell

Last night we ended up in the emergency room with a sick baby, compliments of daycare. 

I'd like to apologize to all my neighbors who probably heard Benjamin cry at the wee hours of the night. Of course he would get sick the hottest day of the year when everyone had their windows open. 

Today we woke up with a hangover minus the fun, because neither of us slept. At 6am I rolled out of bed defeated and made breakfast while Tim called in with a sick babe.

Living in Alaska I never thought I would say this, but we could not stay in the house, it was suffocating. We took Ben for a three hour stroll downtown, he mostly slept his sickness off, and we mostly walked like zombies. Sigh. 

Someone on Twitter said yesterday that we should strive to love our kids every day the way we do when they're sick, and it reminded me to be thankful for my sweet baby who will soon be better, for health insurance, and a husband who walks with me through the thick and thin of parenting. But mostly I'm thankful for the gift of parenthood, even when it sucks, it's still really, really good. 

Sunday, June 7, 2015

Yay for weekends

Why are weekends so short? Especially summer weekends in Alaska should have at least one more day. Right?

If you've seen me lately, you know I'm training for a half marathon next month, and on Friday I ran the Twilight 12K with these beauties. We not only finished but our personal records were on point, and celebratory beer was in order. 

We took Benjamin to the park because parks are his happy place, and because a tired baby is a baby who sleeps well. We are usually up by 6am with him, but he let us sleep until EIGHT THIRTY this weekend. The last time I slept until 8:30am was over a year ago, so the word that comes to mind is HEAVENLY, it was pretty heavenly. Hooray for parks!

Today we hiked and showed Ben the place where his papa proposed to me five years ago. 

He was more interested in the birds and the dogs hiking with their owners than the romantic story I was trying to tell, though. 

We finished the day with a big, fat, Alaskan wild berry ice cream.

Now I need to nap. 

What did you do this weekend? Did you get to nap? 

Tuesday, June 2, 2015

Baby times, they are a changin'

Today we dropped Benjamin off at daycare for the first time. He will be there part time throughout the summer to help him transition in the fall, when I'll go back to work. 

Benjamin was super excited about the new toys and didn't even cry when we left. I stood behind the door watching him for a while as the teachers sang "hello Benjamin, hello Benjamin, hello Benjamin, we are happy that you're here!", then I lost it, you would think he moved out of the house or something. Clearly my son is much braver than I am. 

Tim took the day off to help me wipe my tears and to take me on a date day, which is like a date night but for parents who have childcare during the day. 

So here's to letting go and to new beginnings. Here's to my baby growing up and becoming more independent, here's to date days and some baby-free hours. 

A new chapter begins!
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