5.23.2017

Happiness


Hey guys, hope all is well! Everything on my end is going pretty dang awesome. :) I honestly have had the best month and a half of my life! Mitch and I have really got our routine down, and are just really enjoying marriage and the phase of life we are in. As cheesy as it sounds marriage really is 10x better than you ever imagine it will be. Also, I am 22 weeks!

As happy as I've been the last few weeks, though, I do still have the tiny tiniest of stress clouds hanging over my shoulder all the time just encouraging me to freak out about finances when the baby comes because we both decided that when Baby comes I will leave my job and focus on motherhood full time. Which, I do have to say I am so, so grateful that Mitch is on the same page as me with this and 100% supports my desire to be a stay-at-home mom. Even, though, I'm super excited to give my baby my full attention and time, that little stress cloud I mentioned earlier, just drives me to waste time imagining how nice life will be when we have x things or when Mitch is done with school and makes x amount of money, or how easy things will be when x things happen. 

If any of you follow me on Instagram, though, you'll know I recently started reading "Be Happy" by Hank Smith (one of my former seminary teachers, holla). Anyway, so far, and I'm not very far, I've learned that only 10 percent of our happiness comes from our circumstances. Only TEN! I don't know if that's blowing your minds as much as it blew mine, but I was super surprised. I feel like it's almost human tendency to think that our circumstances and what happens to us impacts more like 90 percent of our happiness.

Anyway, I wish I could share the whole book with you guys but since I can't I'll share this quote with you, "People who believe all their happiness depends on circumstances fall into a dangerous trap. They think that happiness will be in the next place, with the next job, with the next partner, and so on. You'll chase it your entire life and never catch it because it wasn't ever there in the first place. And until you give up on the idea that happiness is somewhere else, it will never be where you are." WOWZA, am I right?

That paragraph from the book really got me thinking about how that sounds a lot like the family goal Mitch and I set for ourselves to enjoy the phase of life we are in instead of wasting time wishing for the next one. And it gave me a big old wake up call to focus on the present and finding happiness in my life as it is and will be in the next few months!

So to conclude I guess I just want to encourage all of us to really focus on the present, finding our happiness, and not letting our circumstances determine our level of joy! Oh and just as a side-note, I can feel Baby moving now and it's gotten me so, so excited!

Much love! 



5.11.2017

Finding Joy in Pregnancy








Hello, hello! I've been intending to write more frequently now that I'm prego, I want to be able to keep better track of this pregnancy so baby has something to look back on. Here goes then. I feel like this pregnancy has been a whirlwind of emotion for me. If I'm being honest, the first trimester, I didn't have any of the warm fuzzies and excitement that most women seem to have and I felt like something must be wrong with me. I mean, don't get me wrong, I loved my baby, but I was just having a hard time feeling connected with the fact that I was pregnant. If I'm being totally and completely honest, though, I know it was just because I was being resiliently selfish, having a hard time letting go of selfish thinking, and being overly concerned with the changes my body was and would be going through. What finally changed things, though, were a couple of things. 

One, when I finally felt the baby move for the first time last week! It was so crazy and I'm telling you, that moment, was my, "This is real, this is my baby, and I love him/her so, so much" moment. It wasn't even a big movement or anything, just a tiny little rolling sensation, but it was amazing! The second thing that really turned things around for me was thinking about what a blessing it was to even have the opportunity to be pregnant and have gotten this far in my pregnancy. Just thinking about how it isn't as easy for every woman to reach motherhood, and there I was completely taking it for granted, really humbled me. 

Pregnancy is beautiful and it really is a time to be in awe of what our bodies are capable of and feel gratitude that we have that opportunity! Maybe that's a little cliche and cheesy but it really is so true. And reminding myself of that daily helps me to get over my fear of one, pushing a baby out of my body, and two my concerns over how soft and big my body is getting/will get. Just trying to focus on the miracle of it all day by day so I don't get too scared, haha. So yeah, Baby, if you ever read this, I want you to know that I love you SO much and it just took your mama a little second to get over herself, haha!


4.27.2017

Bumpdate 18 Weeks!


I think most of you that still read my blog -when I actually post, haha- follow me on instagram so you already know that I'm pregnant. If not...SURPRISE. ;) Anyway, I am 18 weeks along and will be 19 weeks on Tuesday! GAH! I'm basically halfway done. CRAZY. Anyway, I figured it was about time to do some updates on pregnancy! Also, the pink wall has nothing to do with the gender of the baby; I just liked how it looked. :)

Let's start with, how I broke the news to Mitch: It was a Sunday in January. My period was already two days late but I didn't think much of it because my period is usually always two days late, haha! After we came home from church, though, Mitch just couldn't stop raving about babies and saying, "What if you're pregnant already? You could be pregnant right now!!" This got me wondering so I quietly stepped into the bathroom to use a spare test from months earlier, when we had actually been trying. I took the test and a few minutes later the results came back positive! In the moment I honestly was in pure shock. I couldn't believe it and honestly just felt so overwhelmed with feeling unprepared for this so I just hid the test in my bathroom drawer, thinking I'd break the news to Mitch when I had processed it a little more myself. When I came out of the bathroom, though, Mitch just kept raving about how I could be pregnant and what if I was pregnant. Seeing how excited he was at the possibility of my being pregnant, I knew I couldn't keep him in the dark about it so I had him sit down while I went to grab the test. When I came back out I just handed it to him and was almost instantly scooped up into a giant bear hug. Mitch was SO excited, haha. He spun me around, shouted, ran around our apartment and just couldn't contain his happiness. I honestly should have filmed it! His excitement really helped me feel more at ease and less nervous! 

Alright, let's just break down the rest of the post into little question/answer type bullets!

Cravings: Eggs, any kind, any time. Carne asada and cheese burgers. PIZZA and mac & cheese. YUMMMMMM. The only one of these cravings I like giving in to, though, are the eggs haha. 

How big is baby?: The baby is now 5 1/2 ounces and 7 inches long which is apparently the size of a bell pepper! Crazy how a bell pepper can manage to hide in my stomach and not really show unless it's after lunch, haha! 

Total Weight Gain: I don't know for sure on this one since I hadn't weighed myself since before I got married but going off what I weighed at my first doctor's appointment I think I'm at 10lbs. Which kind of freaks me out, haha, so I try not to think about it too much. If I stay within an average range, though, I've still got another 15-20lbs to go. Yikes! 

Maternity Clothes: I haven't gotten any yet because I haven't really been showing too much, although, my jeans are starting to be uncomfortably snug so I'm thinking it's time!

Sleep?: What sleep? Haha. Sleeping has been super uncomfortable. Now that I can't sleep on my back that is the only position I want to sleep in and that doesn't hurt in some way, figures. So yeah, me and sleep are enemies right now and I don't imagine that will be changing any time soon. 

Symptoms: Breast tenderness came back with a vengeance this week. Stomach aches have subsided but been replaced with...get ready for this TMI...major gas and constipation. Not much of an enjoyable trade to say the least.

Gender: We don't know the gender yet and even, though, we could find out at our next doctor's appointment on the 18th, we have decided to not find out and be surprised! A lot of people don't get why we want to do this, but honestly I just think it will be so special to find out when he/she makes his/her grand appearance. I can't wait!

Belly Button In Or Out: It's still in since I don't have much of a belly yet but I suspect it will be out once my belly gets bigger. Ack!

What I Miss: I really super miss not having some sort of constant stomach discomfort, whether it be a stomach ache or constipation. I also miss feeling like I could see progress when I went to the gym because now a days I go with zero expectations of seeing a difference, haha.

What I'm Looking Forward To: Baby giggles, soft round baby belly, and seeing Mitch be a dad. I really think he will be so great. He's so excited already and I just know he's going to give the baby so much love! 

Bump?: It's never visible in the mornings or after a workout but more prominent after I've eaten larger meals like lunch or dinner. The little belly you see above is thanks to my post-lunch bloat, haha. :)

Well, that's all for now. Much love!

1.30.2017

Love in a Time of Intolerance


I don't know if anyone who continues to read my blog has any political leanings, I'm sure that you do. Either way, my original plan with this post had been to vent my feelings of anger, and disappointment  in anyone who voted for the current president and how I couldn't believe that anyone could knowingly do such a thing. However, before I did, I stopped to think about how much negativity had entered my heart in the last few days of non-stop reading articles of the horrible things going on, and friend's endless streams of posts of updates on the situation and expressions of their feelings (If we're Facebook friends, you'll know I did a lot of this over the weekend too). After thinking about it, I decided that instead of writing an anger filled post, I should go find something uplifting to read and share a message of  positivity.

The message I came across was the First Presidency's message for the month on lds.org entitled, "Focus First on Love". When I saw it I instantly knew that's what I needed to read to ease my troubled heart and bring some peace back into my mind. Here's a little excerpt from the message, "We will learn to see beyond labels. We will resist the temptation to accuse or judge others by their sins, shortcomings, flaws, political leanings, religious convictions, nationalities, or skin color. We will see every one we meet as a child of our Heavenly Father—our brother or our sister.

The two great commandments (Thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy mind...Thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself.) are the target. On these two commandments hang all the law and the prophets.3 As we accept this, all other good things will fall into place.

If our primary focus, thoughts, and efforts are centered on increasing our love for Almighty God and extending our hearts to others, we can know that we have found the right target and are aiming at the bull’s-eye—becoming true disciples of Jesus Christ." -President Uchtdorf

Boy oh boy did reading this message put a stop to my negative feelings.  I was so busy pointing the finger at everyone else that I didn't even realize that I should have also been pointing the finger at myself. Where was my love that saw beyond political leanings? Buried under a Trump centered rage, I'll tell you. It's just like President Uchtdorf said, though, "as we accept this, all other good things will fall into place", and as hard as it may seem at times that's exactly what we need to have faith in. 


Now I'm not saying we should all avoid the news because staying informed, especially in times like these, is so very important. I'm just saying that maybe we shouldn't let it overwhelm us. That's a direct quote from my home teacher, haha! They came over right as I had finished reading the First Presidency message, which was the message they ended up sharing, and gave Mitch and I some really great counsel. Seriously, those guys are great men and I have to add a shameless plug for any of you wives, girlfriends, or sisters out there to encourage the men in your lives to go out and do their home-teaching; it really does make a difference. 

Anyway, another thing one of our home-teachers said was to focus on the things we could change and not worry about the things we couldn't change. Can I change who the president is? No. Therefore, I shouldn't worry about it. Can I help/change the situation of refugees at least in some small way? Yes! Here is a wonderful resource on how as Utahns we can contribute locally to refugees. http://www.uw.org/211/volunteer-center/help-refugees-utah.html

So I'll end this post by saying that we should all stay vigilant but also happy and ready to extend love and understanding to everyone!

1.24.2017

Organization & Motivation = Killer Abs...Finally?



You know, I'm really enjoying this new track with the content of my blog. Writing is just what I've always loved and moving away from trying to get you all to click on affiliate links and earn commission, to just writing for the sake of writing, even if that means no one visits or reads this blog anymore, feels so utterly refreshing! So what have I got for you today? Fitness goals!

I got this cute little fitness planner at Target after my older sister, Allison, got one for herself. I'm such a typical copy-cat little sister, am I not? I'm hoping the planner helps me stay on track, though. It'll be tough stuff, though, because since Mitch and I both work, and he goes to school, we have to wake up at 5am to get our bums to the gym. Yuck, am I right? I've written out the week's workouts, though, so hopefully that will help with motivation.

Anyhow, for the past few months or so my fitness goals have shifted from being weight centered to being lean-muscle centered. Focusing on the number on the scale has always driven me mad and, for me at least, has lead to obsessive tendencies related to that number. I recently found a macro coach on insta and decided I wanted to give her program a shot with the purpose of being able to finally see the work I put in at the gym without having to deprive myself completely of certain food groups. When I get the funds together to get that going I'll fill you guys in and post some before pics...that will hopefully eventually be followed by some killer after pics! ;)

Anyway, if any of you want a fitness planner, run yer little bums over to Target. I don't even know if any of these are left, though, because I was lucky to find the one I got hidden under a pile of other planners. They must have gone fast. They didn't even have the meal planner one anymore, either, and I really wanted that one. Oh well, though.

Much love!

1.20.2017

Sometimes...I Hate My Hair



I'm just going to come out and say this outright. Sometimes self-love is a bunch of baloney. Just a whole bunch of stinky, rotten, BALONY. Betcha didn't think this post was going to be about this based on the lovey-dovey photos of my husbabe and me, did ya? Hahahaha. Ya know why I'm thinking this, though? Because I promised myself I would go the whole month of January without using heat on my hair, ie, I had to wear it natural for alllll 31 days of the month. I wish I could say that 20 days into it I have found a new found 'love' and 'appreciation' for it, that it's been an eye-opening journey on loving myself as I am and yadayada, but if I did I would be lying. 

What it's actually been is a whole 20 days of newfound rage against my hair. I've hated every single second of it so far and I'll go as far as to say that I've even been struggling with feeling attractive. Not because I think curly hair is fundamentally unattractive but because I personally just can't convince myself to feel pretty with my natural hair. Now, this isn't me fishing for compliments because there is no amount of flattery that would convince me right now that doing this was a good idea, haha, but I'm sticking to it. My main goal in doing this was to give my hair a break from the heat to see if doing so would improve its overall health and maybe even help it grow a little. To be honest, I haven't seen any radical difference but maybe that's because I'm coming from a place of extreme negativity right now, haha. 

Who knows, though, maybe by January 30th I will find that sense of 'who we are is awesome' and, 'we shouldn't change a thing about ourselves' mumbo jumbo. Mitch is a big proponent of this and I love him for it because on the days when I'm really struggling with liking my hair, his encouragement helps me out. I on the other hand am a proponent of do whatever makes YOU feel pretty. If you're one of those awesome humans that feels prettiest bare-faced with a simple bun, well then, good on ya mate! But if you're the type who feels her best with a full face of makeup and hair glammed out, well then, good on ya too you cheeky diva! I personally fall somewhere in between those too. Some days I want to give up on makeup altogether (ok, except for mascara and a little blush) and own my 'natural beauty' but other days I want the cleanest cut winged liner paired with the fluffiest eye-lash extensions. It's a constant roller coaster.

Anyway, I have no clear conclusion here, so I'll just say goodbye and check in again later on.

1.18.2017

The Pancakes Were Good


It's 9:27am and I'm sitting at our small kitchen table, as Mitch makes us 'protein pancakes' from scratch for breakfast. I tried to give him advice but he shushed me and said he knew what he was doing, haha. We'll see how good they turn out. ;) As soon as the pancakes are cooking, though, I'm on sunny-side-up egg duty so we'll see how much I can write before then.

I'm trying to keep this blog as honest and just true to what I'm thinking as possible so we'll see what comes out and how I do. I think lately, I've been thinking a lot about the 'what-ifs' of life. When I was single, I remember I used to spend a lot of time preoccupied with the 'what-if' of marriage and I almost found myself thinking that when that 'what-if' was solved, all other life problems would magically dissipate. There would be no other what-ifs, no problems, care-free happy living. In some ways that's sort of true but in a lot of ways also, not. 

It's true because if you really allow yourself to soak in the felicity of having found your life companion you truly are on another plane of happiness, one that you would have never even thought existed. It's also not true because life isn't all of a sudden easy and problems don't just cease to exist. There's still a myriad of what-ifs. When will we have kids? How many will we have? Where will we live? What jobs will we have? Will we have job security? Will we ever pay off debt? Someday will we have the cash-flow to just pick up and do something crazy and adventurous? And those are just the simple-ones, assuming that we'll always have perfect health, cars will never break down, and tears never shed. The only thing that changes with marriage is that you know who you'll be experiencing these what-ifs with.

It is now a whole two days later, haha, and I'm picking this post back up. Typical me. At least I'm writing, though. Anyway, I'll wrap this post up by getting to my point, which is that life is always a mystery but it can be a happy mystery. On that note, I want to make a list of things I want more of and less of in 2017.

MORE:

-smiles & laughter
-confidence
-time with friends and family
-road trips
-adventures
-love
-peaceful moments
-learning
-understanding
-service
-HAPPINESS

LESS:

-comparison
-scrolling through social media
-impatience
-frustration
-self-doubt
-worry

1.11.2017

The Last of Them






















































And here's the last of the wedding photos! :) I realize there's a LOT and I maybe shouldn't have shared all of them but our day was so fun and the reception was just the funnest party I've ever been to! The food was delish, and the dancing was so, so great! I'd be remiss not to thank my parents and all they did to get this wedding together for us! Without their help we probably would've had our reception in a parking lot, like I had a nightmare about once, haha. I love looking back at these reception photos because they remind me of how much fun we had! Honestly, I think I was smiling from ear to ear the whole night! Also, dancing with Mitch is my fav! He goes full force on the dance floor every time and I adore it! One of my favorite things from our wedding is our guest-sign in. Instead of doing the traditional book, I got us a 2017 calendar for our guests to leave us notes on, on each of the months of the year and I was so excited to put it up this month so we could see the notes that were left on January! I know there's so much that could be said about all the little details of our reception but sometimes pictures speak louder than words, so enjoy!
DESIGN BY AMANDA INEZ