Oh, What A Year

The whole country (& world) shut down around K’s birthday last year. March 12th was our last meal in a restaurant. Sunday night suppers at my grandparents’ house stopped, mindless Target wandering was no longer ok, and spending time at home with our 3 month old became our only entertainment for a while.

Running a company is always a stressful thing, but watching K sort out how to keep everyone safe, employed, healthy, and just OK in general has been exhausting and painful. (I can’t begin to imagine how he feels about it.) It’s been a soul-crushing year.

(Our primary customers are schools- specifically the extracurricular music programs in schools. The programs that have been cancelled, delayed, reduced due to COVID.)

It’s been an atrocious year to say the absolute very least. I don’t know if we’ve (Kyle’s) ever been this stressed out, 24/7, without relief. It has most certainly shaved years off his life. The rebound/rebuild isn’t a walk in the park either.

And while he’s walking into a new year with a shorter fuse, more grey hair, and a much bigger chip (gash?) on his shoulder, he’s also grown into an even more wonderful human, partner, and dad.

We’re raising a smart and snarky little girl that loves to play with and laugh with her daddy. We have two dogs that get excited every. single. time. he enters the room. K has started cooking his way around the kitchen and- spoiler alert- he’s really good at it. We’ve bought a camper and started down that literal and figurative road. He’s paying better attention to his physical and mental health. He listens to me and encourages me and calls me out on my b.s. when I need it.

Despite all the things that I know weigh him down, he’s such an accomplished, fulfilled, incredible (almost) 34 year old. My life is good because he’s a part of it. We’re in a pretty tough, stressful season of life right now, but seasons change.

Happy Birthday, love. It’s going to get better and then maybe worse again but then better.

To My Little Love

Sweet Moo Baby… today is your last day being ZERO.

Last year I knew we’d be meeting you soon. We had a scheduled induction on December 4th at 8am… but at 2am you decided to start things yourself. Now that we know you, I completely understand. You’re a headstrong, determined, do-it-yourself little spirit. I love your spirit.

When we brought you home Bristol barked and growled at you. She wanted to play with you SO badly. Enzo was more than happy to cuddle up & nap all day- although I think he was quickly over the sleepless nights. But you figured out sleep quickly. And then you figure out eating. And crawling. And babbling. I love your smart little brain.

Watching you grow and learn and move has been the greatest joy of my life, babe. You bring out all the strong emotions in me- pride, love, fear, frustration, humor. You are such a clever, funny, goofy little girl. I love your personality.

You’re not one for cuddles yet, but you will sit on my lap for a few minutes of Blue’s Clues. You gentle pet and play with Bristol’s fur when you’re taking a bottle. You nuzzle your head into my neck when you’re having a rough night. You freely give me and your daddy and all the stuffed animals kisses. I think you’ve learned not to kiss the pups- it results in a mouthful of hair. I love your big, sweet heart.

Mommy and Daddy had a doozy of a first year. We learned a lot about being your parents. We picked our battles. We had little sleep and lots of help. We navigated a pandemic as new parents and, as a result, we got to spend lots and lots and lots of time with you. I will always be so thankful for that. Despite the world being upside down, you were hardly affected. I love your resilience. You are a brave, happy, incredible little soul.

Your daddy and I spent many years together without you- but this year with you has been one of our favorites. I’ve never seen him so in love with or proud of another human. You will forever be the apple of his eye, my love. I’m happy to share his heart with you ❤️

Happy Birthday, Moo-da-Lou. We love you forever and always.

-Mom

Thirty Years Old

Hello, again. Saturday is my 30th birthday. Tomorrow is my last day “in my twenties.” I don’t think I’ll wake up feeling any differently on Saturday, but it’s a strange transition nonetheless.

I loved my twenties. I went to India, graduated college, moved out of my parents’ house, adopted several puppers, married K, had my little Moo, bought and sold a few houses, traveled, found my (fingers crossed) forever job… It was a decade of discovery and growth and freedom. I squeezed a lot into those ten years. K was with me for all of it, too ❤️

I momentarily freaked out when I hit 25 but I have no qualms about 30. I truly have everything I want and I’m excited to live my life in that mindset. We’re comfortable, we’re in love, we’re happy. Is 2020 a weird sh*t show? For sure. But personally I’m entering my 30s with confidence.

As such, I thought I’d share 30 thoughts/tips/pieces of advice that I live by…

  1. Look up.
  2. People, animals, and experiences will make you rich. Things will not.
  3. Speak clearly and learn to communicate well. It will alleviate so much heartache.
  4. Spending money to get your dog(s) groomed is worth it.
  5. When you can help someone, help them. When you need help, ask for it.
  6. Pay attention to what and who bring you joy- then invest your time & energy there.
  7. Find your people and show up for them. Quality over quantity.
  8. Know how to calm your mind: pray, read, meditate, write. I prefer sitting in the dark.
  9. Clean your dishwasher & washing machines. I guarantee they’re gross.
  10. Same with fan blades.
  11. The miracle of aging is a gift. Accept your mortality & appreciate your longevity.
  12. “No” is a complete sentence.
  13. Eating chocolate before bed makes for some really weird dreams.
  14. You’re not for everyone. Everyone’s not for you. See #23.
  15. The most rewarding things are often the hardest things.
  16. You can do hard things.
  17. Less really is more.
  18. Order a side of gravy for dipping when you get fries at Dairy Queen. Trust me.
  19. Eat your veggies. And if you don’t like veggies, change how you cook them. They’re delish.
  20. Honesty is the best policy but sometimes silence is the best option.
  21. Respect your sig. other & give him or her the benefit of the doubt. They are on your side.
  22. Drink more water.
  23. It takes all kinds of kinds.
  24. Wild animals are meant to be wild.
  25. The grass is greener where you water it. (K says this a lot actually.)
  26. Adopt don’t shop.
  27. Always try to be kind. You don’t always need to be nice, though.
  28. Absolutely positively NOTHING is guaranteed. And no one owes you a damn thing.
  29. It’s not a good deal if you can’t afford it.
  30. Blowing out someone else’s candle doesn’t make yours brighter.

Just call me the Audi Lama. I kid, I kid. Sometimes (often) I fail to take my own advice, but over the past three decades these are the things I’ve learned bring me the most joy and serenity.

What am I doing for my birthday, you ask? Getting a professional manicure (FINALLY! I’ll be masked up, obvi), going on a family hike, and playing a board game at home. Coming into my 30s like a mad woman! 😉

Happy Birthday, My Love

Today is K’s 33rd birthday.

(I love this pictures of him giving his sister the business.)

Last year, when he turned 32, we had no idea it would be his last one without a child. We were on vacation- in Arizona- and we went on a long train ride through a canyon and had dinner at the MOST delicious place. Arizona was rainy and cold and expensive- but it’s one of my favorite trips ever.

Today is much less fun. K is at work & I’m home with a congested baby. Tonight we have calling hours for a very distant family member. Hopefully I can make K feel special this weekend with some fun activities and one of his favorite dinners.


It seems that at 33 and 29 we’re officially true adults. Ha. We started dating when he was 20. We’ve both changed so much over the past thirteen years and yet… we’re still the same ❤ & he’s still my favorite person on the planet.

 

Happy Birthday, my love. Here’s to many, many more.

Birthday Month Wishlist

Thank you for all the love this week. It’s meant so much ♥ I want things to just feel normal & they don’t yet. I’ll be fine, then think about how Ly’s stocking is packed away, ready to affect me come Christmas time. She used to go upstairs and nap every. single. time. I made coffee at home. I haven’t brought myself to make any yet because I hate that she’s not there to carry out her weird little habit. Weird stuff like that still lingers and makes me cry myself to sleep every stupid night.

I meant for this to be a happier post, though, so I’m going to move on. But I did want to sincerely thank everyone for their love. It’s been a comfort to us.

It’s my birthday month & the best month of the year!

My family likes to tease that once baby is here, nothing with be about me anymore. (You all ARE just teasing, right?) But… I still have a few weeks and fortunately my 29th birthday falls in that time.

Every year I do a wish list and every year I say (and mean) this: I don’t need a thing for my birthday. I wrote this post before we lost Lylee so I would take her over every single gift ever but I know that’s not possible and wishing for it makes me imagine a Monkey’s Paw situation which is icky.

Ok… now moving on 😬

Entertainment:

Harry Potter & the Goblet of Fire Illustrated Copy. It’s finally (coming) out! I’m so excited to get my hands on this gorgeous book!!

Professor Layton and the Azran Legacy. I don’t play a ton of video games anymore, but I still love these.

Clothes:

I love clothes but I’m kind of between sizes 😉 lol

I Work Out to… tank. I’m thinking an XL would be great for postpartum yoga and barre workouts someday when I’m all cleared to go back to that stuff.

Home Items:

I always love a snarky doormat. This one or this one would fit in great at our house. Again, when I found these mats we had multiple dogs. We will again some day so I still love it.

Beetlejuice pillow. I very much love this and would probably leave it out for more than Halloween. Lol

Random Items:

A bag for my yoga mat. I haven’t had a fictional strap or bag for my mat in years. I know they’re inexpensive and easy enough to find, I just haven’t pulled the trigger.

New cooling racks. I have two wire cooling racks and the black nonstick coating is peeling off both of them. Not a great “sprinkle” to have on your cookies or cupcakes.

A sticker for my laptop. MacBook 13″

A case for my laptop. MacBook 13″

**For family: All the Amazon items can be found on my wish list, plus some other items


I love October and we’re trying very heard to mend and take care of our hearts this month. We have lots of baby prep to get done and Halloween is just around the corner. This will definitely be a month of change for all of us.