Tuesday, December 30, 2014

Mrs. Bookworm in 2015!

I always mean to blog, and than all of the sudden it is the 29th of December and I haven't blogged in 28 days... because life gets in the way and the thing about being a working mama is that I am super exhausted in the evenings and I just want to hang out with my son and eat supper and be mindless for a couple of hours before I go to bed and start my day all over again.

I was looking at my blog posts too see what caught every one's interests and what I found out was interesting. You guys are interested in what I have to say about mamahood fashion, my house organization, and my working mama thoughts. These are the topics that I was planning on continuing to write about because being a mama is a pretty constant thing, but how I go about life is constantly evolving. Don't be surprised if throw in some recipes or some our zany adventures in sporadically too. Just like everyone else we got to eat and fairly consistently weird things happen to us-- most commonly Little Man and I, but The Doc has some interesting adventures as well.

My goal is to post on Mondays and Fridays... and if the blogging bug hits any other time during the week I will wander back and catch you up on our week here. You can find us on Bloglovin' and so head on over and follow us. Also, make sure to comment on any topics you would like for me to cover.

I have this idea for a monthly series about various things that I have learned as a parent--- the kind of stuff that every one just expects you to know, even though nobody tells you! Man oh man have we had some adventures!

I hope you all are enjoying the last few days of 2014 and your 2015 starts out rocking!

Mrs. Bookworm & Little Man (he has been playing with my phone and stylus on my lap as I type this.)

Monday, December 1, 2014

Day 31: Closing Remarks

It is the first day of December and I think that this going to be as good as it gets for my 31 days of Real Life, but that is okay. I have learned a lot through this writing experience and I am glad that I chose to complete this project. Even if it did take me two months to complete it. Motherhood is hard, but reflecting on it helped me to see what i was doing right and what areas I still needed to learn from... motherhood is a process and as Little Man continues to get older I will need to continually adapt to do what is beast for our family!

Today is being spent at home, I am pushing through all of my laundry-- because I wanted to make sure that everyone else was ready for our three day work week and then our long weekend away from home. I have rounded up the majority of my clothes and have them all color sorted! The biggest challenge is always getting them put away. I have so many other things that I feel like I need to focus on that this is the least important.

If I can get through all of the laundry today it will make this week so much smoother and we will have less laundry that needs to be done next week. December is always a busy month for us with Christmas parties, the Doc's birthday, and other holiday happenings.

Life continues on, whether we are ready for it or not. Thank you for joining with me on this almost 31 day journey.

Thursday, November 20, 2014

Day 30: Sick Baby!

Sometimes life gets in the way of blogging... and that is just how it has to be. Little Man caught a stomach bug from daycare. The last two days have had a lot of snuggles, diapers, and pedialyte.

Tuesday, November 11, 2014

Day 27: What's a Family to Eat?

We are on day 2 of snow days... so Little Man and I didn't go to work. We stayed home and as of right now we have chicken in the oven. I was going to make baked chicken until I realized that I did have rice crispies or special k at my house... so instead I dipped the chicken in chipotle ranch dressing and backed it for 15 minutes and then checked it and poured a little more dressing and then put some butter in the dish to keep things moist. I am baking it at 350 degrees for approximately 40 minutes. It smells delicious, but that has led me down a path of destruction before. Dinners have about a 50/50 chance of turning out. My philosophy is keeping and open mind and trying new things.

Feeding my family more than frozen pizzas or cereal and pb sandwhiches is important. Though, it is going to take a little longer to be able to find balance and keep this going... I think we are on the right path.

Monday, November 10, 2014

Day 26: Winter is Here

We are in a region wide (my part of the start) winter weather warning, though it sounds like western Wisconsin is also getting hit by the snow. Little Man and I are in our jammies. We just stirred the chili and will be stirring it again shortly. We took a couple of naps and watched the snow fall outside. The visibility is better now than what it was before... but snow emergencies are being called everywhere and business are closing down. I am so very glad that I got LM some more baby food and picked up a gallon of milk for us.
We are just doing laundry and hanging out... it is way too windy for us to go outside and see if little man even likes the snow. Winter is here to stay I would say, so I imagine we will have a lot of time for that.

Sunday, November 9, 2014

Day 25: One Bite at a Time

Lately,  I haven't felt like I have had a lot of things to say on the blog, because everything seems to be very ordinary-- Little Man and I do a lot of day to day things like laundry, dishes, playing, and trying to figure out what we can make for supper based off of our very odd pantry staples. Harvest time almost always kills my groove and turns me into a person who is stressed frazzled, and doesn't have enough hours in the day to get anything done. Right now at our house is rush time because we have heard that we are going to get anywhere from 0-16 inches of snow in the next 48 hours... This seems like over kill to me mother nature, but my opinion is irrelevant. Mother Nature is still going to do her thing. So, I am going to turn up the heat a little bit in the house and I am going to try and get a little bit more laundry done. I did pull a lot of unnecessary stuff out of my car this evening when I finally got Little Man settled for the night. This whole teething thing is going to be death of this mama. What I have noticed is that when I am at my whits end with the crying and the teething pain thing... there is a continual urge just for one more snuggle until my frustration subsides.

Which is kind of how I feel about putting my house back together... Yes, there are a lot of things that need to be done and it is totally overwhelming when I put it in the context of what I need to do everyday. When I work on putting my house back together one task at a time, it does seem way more manageble. So, right now even though I am tired and cold I am going to pick a couple of tasks to do-- so that tomorrow I am able to do a couple more tasks and then eventually my house will be put back together. I have to keep in mind that I have a lot of responsibilities, but if I work at things a little bit at a time they go so much better.

I do wish that the snow would be in such a rush to greet us, but it was bound to happen... so I guess that it is better just to get it over with and move on to our next thing. Though, snow does complicate what I was going to wear to work tomorrow, because a dress on the first snow of the year is ALWAYS a bad idea!

Thursday, November 6, 2014

Day 24: Wrapping Up the Week

I am in the process of wrapping up the week, I have one more official day of work and then I switch gears to full-time mama for the weekend. What I am looking at entails copious mounts of laundry and dishes.... I am currently drinking cider out of a Christmas mug, because that was the last clean one in the cupboard and now we have no clean mugs/ glasses.... During the week it is sometimes easier to just push things to the side, because when I get home from work I want to spend time with Little Man in addition to things that have to be done like making supper, and preparing ourselves for the next day. The weekend is usually more relaxed, because we don't have concrete deadlines. We can  hang out in our jammies and watch a cartoon. Little Man loves The Doozers on hulu. The episodes are 10-12 minutes long... we don't watch a lot of tv, but this show I recommend because it has great morals, bright colors, music, and are fun.

This weekend will be a lot of work, but it will be worth it in the end. I hope everyone has a fantastic Friday.

Monday, November 3, 2014

Day 29: Working Mama, Traveling Mama

Little Man and I are gone a lot between work and other obligations. So, I have become really good at packing a diaper bag for day long adventures. I thought I would share with you what I always keep in my diaper bag today.

Here is my diaper bag, though mine is in the print navy wave (which has been discontinued). I love the outside pockets and the fact that it has a zip top. 

I keep a flannel receiving blanket in there-- it does double duty if we are at restaurants or malls I use it on the changing tables. If we are going to a family members or friends we use it as a burp cloth. It one of those pregnancy brain induced purchases that was well worth the eight dollars a pack that I spent on them.

I have a pacifier and pacifier clip in my diaper bag. Little Man loves his pacis, they soothe him and they will be easier to take a way than his thumb. Though, some days he has an attitude about the clip and just wants his paci. So, I keep a munchkin paci & bottle wipes in the diaper bag. Eventually the paci ends up on the ground and this is really helpful to have.

I also have Boogie Wipes. My kid always seems to have a stuffed up nose, and theses seem to help get the boogies out and keep his nose from getting raw.

I always have a book or two in his diaper bag.

We have a couple of toys in there. Right now he is loving his cloth bunny rattle, his monkey toy, and his links. I try to switch the toys out every once in awhile. 

I of course have diapers and wipes. With one of cases of diapers we got a Diapees & Wipees diaper holder with a little plastic case for wipes. I love this thing! I can't fit as much in it now that he is in size 3 diapers, but when he was little I could fit diapers, wipes, Vaseline, and his little bottom lotion. The other nice thing about it is that when we are at grandma's house I can just grab that thing and away we go! This last time that I bought a case of wipes I got this little re-usable wipes travel case... and I love it! It is way better than the individual packs of travel diapers. We use Pampers diapers and Huggies natural care wipes. When it is necessary I throw in diaper cream or other necessaries.

Of course you will need baby food... as in substance for the little one.  Little Man is still drinking formula, though we are introducing pureed baby foods. What I have found that if we are going to be gone for a little while those teeny tiny rubbermaid plastic containers work great (I also use them form spice mixtures)! If I am going to be gone for say a whole day I will throw two of those in my bag and bring the big formula container, but leave it in the car. That sucker gets heavy toting it around the mall. I buy bottled water for Little Man, mainly because there usually isn't a drinking fountain close by when he wants to eat. For as much as we have to be out and about, I prefer to be home during our fruits/ veggie meal Little Man makes quite the mess and a good portion of the time it ends up in my hair. Not because he spits it out, but because he touches my face or hair while he is eating.

(none of these links are affiliate links, they are more or less to give you an idea of what I am talking about)

Tuesday, October 28, 2014

Day 28: Hectic Life

I am still here, it just got really busy with work, beautiful weekend weather and a sick feeling Little Man. I will be back tomorrow! I have some really great topics coming up and some more clothing posts as soon as I find my camera cord. Yes, it is still missing and now it is making me really annoyed.

Thursday, October 23, 2014

Day 23: What Are You Looking For in a Home, Mama?

We are going to try something a little different tonight (yes, it is night time here). One of my favorite blogs is Apartment Therapy, there are a lot of styles and different pictures and truly great ideas-- though after watching them I feel really overwhelmed, because my house is not a little bungalow or a studio or anything I would peg as very cool. We live in an old, cold farm house that has more quirks than character. Anyway they are doing a style cure this fall, and so I figured I would post my answer to the "interview questions"

These questions all came from Apartment Therapy's style Interview, the responses are all of my own.
Favorite Actor: Ryan Reynolds
favorite actress: Reese Witherspon/ Anne Hathaway
favorite artist: Edgar Degas
Favorite writer: I don't have one, but I do read Nora Roberts sometimes
Favorite Music: Jewel, Pistol Annies, Sunflowers by Everclear
Favorite Restaraunt: (Sawatdees)
Favorite automobile: none
Favorite movie/ tv Show: While You Were Sleeping/ Gilmore Girls
Favorite Clothing Stores: The Limited, Francescas, Banana Republic
Favorite Furniture Store: IKEA

2. Three words to describe your personal style: colorful, comfortable, functional

3.My favorite rooms have been cozy, really comfortable with furniture that meets the needs of the space, and have fun mementos that are visible.

Favorite room from a childhood home: My favorite room ha lots of light and a lot of different pictures of loved ones up.

Favorite room from adulthood home: A room that is comfortable and lived in, but is still pretty and orderly.

4. Whom do you consider a role model: People who are relaxed and fairly casual along with someone who is kind and understanding along with being very smart.

Three characteristics that you admire in that person:
organized, intentional, and welcoming

5. Every home that has spots that are "just right" what three spots in your home do you feel are beautiful and perfect? There are no spots in our house that I am truly in love with 100%. There are different aspects of different places that I like, but nothing feels "just right" a little more tweaking is needed.

6. A month from now, at the end of Style Cure, how would you like friends to describe your home?
cozy, fun, inviting

My take away from this is that I want spaces that are cozy and comfortable, are orderly, and have fun mementos and are orderly. These are completely doable, I will just have to come up with more concrete goals as we go along.  While this is not directly related to being a working mama, it does have a lot to do with where we are in life. When we are not out at things for work, or doing some of our errands we are most likely found at home. Little Man isn't very mobile independently, I am certain that we will be getting to that point very soon.

Wednesday, October 22, 2014

Day 22: One of those days

Today has been one of those days where there seems to be more work than there is time, and there are more road blocks than what is truly possible to overcome. I only accomplished about less than 1/8th of what I wanted to do today because I wasn't focused, I had too many things that I wanted to do and I lost my keys in Target... like everyone working the floor was looking for them. It was terribly embarassing... my dad came to help me look for them we searched through my entire car, that pretty much holds my life.

So now on my to do list is: clean out my car again... I don't have the time to clean it out everyday like everyone is suggesting and have a second spare key made so that one can be left at my parent's house in Willmar. Thankfully, tomorrow is a new day. I teach my Intro to Computers class tomorrow. Which means I will be staying later at school tomorrow. The plus of that is the fact that I will then have a reason to stay at work a little bit later and get some of my tasks accomplished.

Tuesday, October 21, 2014

Day 21: Time to Remix it Up! 7x7 challenge

The hardest thing on my closet was my pregnancy. I hadn't been fluctuating sizes a lot up until I had my son. I had clothes that I had been wearing off and on for 10 years. Then I found out I was pregnant with my son and literally had nothing to wear. It was during this time that I started doing research to figure out what clothing I wanted to invest my money into... the clothing out there is really expensive and impractical for a first time mama or someone who isn't working as an executive. I couldn't tell you how many times I told The Doc that I was going to become a maternity fashion designer  because this was absolutely ridiculous.

Another hit to my closet was my postpartum self. Things just don't fit like they use to. It was truly emotional having to say good-bye to so many of my favorite pieces from my closet. This might be sound silly to some, but I spent a lot of time cultivating my wardrobe. I had a very clear idea about who I was in terms of my clothing then. At this exact moment in time, I do not feel quite so confident about that, though I do feel extremely optimistic about my current wardrobe. While I am still doing some cultivating I am loving how it is turning out. Let me caution you though, building a wardrobe after giving birth is not a sprint. It is a marathon and all of the research and personal reflection I did helped me build a wardrobe that I am really starting to love!

It has taken me eight months to get to this point, and there are still items that I would love to have back in my closet, but they can wait. I will wait until I find the right piece that I absolutely can love! While I am still exploring this mommy-wardrobe, I would love to be able to share part of my journey with you.

One way that we are going to do this is through my own little 7x7 challenge. I am going to pick seven items of clothing that can be worn on the weekend and during my work week. Shoes and accessories are not part of this 7x7. I am also not counting camisoles/ tanks that go under things, but are not visible-- I do have dress code rules that I need to follow. I will be hopefully posting pictures (10/27- 10/28), I have not been successful in finding my camera cord.

My articles of clothing are: black maxi skirt, jeans, black pants, teal cardigan, chambray shirt, black t-shirt, emerald green long sleeve top.

Do you want to remix it up with me?

Monday, October 20, 2014

Day 20: Working From Home

I truly do enjoy my job, I feel that it is beneficial to others and that it is time well spent. Even with all of those things in the positive. I feel like I am losing things at Little Man is growing and changing everyday. He is always happy to show us his new tricks, so sometimes we just pretend that he is doing it for the first time. Sometimes I think that it would be nice to work from home in a job that had more flexible hours so that I could be home with him during the day. I haven't found a good idea or a good way of doing it, but I am sure that if it suppose to be, I will come up with an idea eventually. 

That is why I find these news stories, Hobby Becomes a Thriving Business, so fascinating. It is from our local CBS station. While I don't knit I do find these types of stories encouraging because it can happen.Many people do it everyday, and so it is just a matter of finding something that you love doing and having the patience and perseverance to turn it into a business.

How do you find balance between work and family?

Sunday, October 19, 2014

Day 18: Life Lessons

As a parent I want what is best for Little Man, but with that comes a lot of doubt. I find myself to be second guessing a lot of what I do, when that has never been the case before. Parenting is hard and sometimes being a working mama makes that especially hard. This is because I want to make sure that the time we do have together is special. It doesn't always seem special but even when we are up in the middle of the night with him.  Somedays we accomplish many things like laundry and dishes and so much more and other days we accomplish snuggles and nobody needing extra clothes. Every moment we have together is special and we are learning, growing and exploring together.So, we will keep doing our thing because teaching him that life isn't always exciting and it is not the world's job to entertain us are also good lessons.

Here is a message from LIttle Man (he LOVES to "type": jjhgynxh crrr hooo bygerrc  dd yerxdhhhggggggggfv

Friday, October 17, 2014

Day 16: The Good Little Shopper

Today (Thursday) we took little man to the Mall of America. This is the second time he has been here in his short little life and overall he is a great little shopper. I don't know of many babies who will survive an 8-9 hour shopping day without any melt downs. Part of it is the fact that he has a very chill littler personality and the other part of it was that we were prepared. My mom came with us on this grand adventure! We had a plan and we kept moving. We stopped and looked when we wanted to, but we didn't dilly dally. We also took breaks so that he could stand up and bounce. Even though he still fits in his baby bucket (infant carseat) I don't put him in it in the stroller for long car trips. He prefers to sit up and look around. He is one of those kids who LOVES to observe everything! When you are at the Mall of America there are a lot of people to observe and languages to hear... and it as fun, because people would stop and talk to him not only in English, but in other languages as well. It made this linguist mama's heart very full. We had a great trip, and he did like IKEA... it is mostly the bright colors, not necessarily a blossoming love of Swedish furniture.

Day 14: The Circus Comes to Town!

Little Man's first birthday is coming in a couple of months (March 3rd) to more exact, and we are going to have a birthday party for him. It is undecided as to when exactly, but that is okay. We have a few months to decide that, but I am a planner and I love to have some idea of what we are going to be doing... and so I have been looking for ideas as to what we are going to do for his birthday. We are going to have a circus themed birthday party. When he is bigger maybe we will be able to go skiing  or sledding or something like that for his birthday, but he is little and not highly mobile, so we will do it inside. I found some great inspiration from HelloLucky on Spaceships and Laser Beams, Here is another ADORABLE Circus Party and ANOTHER PARTY. Here are some other inspiring pins: Pom Pom Animals and
Food Table Decorations.

My plan is to keep it simple in both decor and food, because I want to be able to enjoy celebrating my son's birthday and I don't want to be making food up until the last minute. There a lot of mom's out there who are super talented and make everything, but that is not really my thing. I am going to try making some pom pom animals for the party, and maybe try making some homemade pretzels, but the rest of it is going to be bought from the store... and it will be great. 

I think party planning is fun, but the goal is too keep it simple so that we can enjoy our time with family and friends, celebrating everyone's survival of the first year. Especially Little Man who has two parents that don't really know what they are doing. 

Day 17: Somedays Mamas Don't Sleep

For the most part Little Man sleeps through the night, and it is glorious! Though, every once in awhile he doesn't and it seems to be harder the next day because I am use to more consistent sleep. For whatever reason he woke up mad at 3 in the morning, and then at 4 this morning he wanted a little snack. He must have been growing a lot last night and was feeling a little peckish. After he had a little bottle (about four ounces) he went back to sleep until 10 to eight. It was nice to sleep in a little bit , since I ended up being unable to go back to sleep.

These days also happen when I have to go to work, and believe me those days are work are rough. I have to be conscientious about being kind and not being crabby with my colleagues or my students, because it was not by their design that baby boy decided to get up in the middle of the night and not sleep.

Tuesday, October 14, 2014

Day 13: What's a Mama to Wear?

My clothes have to do triple duty. They have be to be tough enough to handle baby puke, boogers, smashed peas and crackers and everything else that goes along with a mama's day. Here is the deal though, my clothes need to be able to be worn to work, church, home and every where in between. I didn't rush out and buy tons of clothes right away because I didn't know what size I was going to be and I wasn't really sure what style I wanted to wear. I have waited seven and a half months (approximately) and I think I have it figured out as to what I am looking for:

I have spent a lot of time looking at blogs that talk about building a remixable wardrobe and the one thing that they all have in common is having a color palette in mind so that everything works together. My neutrals are black and camel (tan). I love the look of white, but I have a seven and a half month old. That would not stay white very long. The colors that I really and truly love are coral, fuchsia, cobalt, and emerald green. I love the jewel tones, because they always look so happy and full of color... also because they feel appropriate for a variety of settings. Weddings, work, church, grocery shopping (believe me, that place needs more happy!)

So through all of my very thorough research (i.e. reading blogs and looking at my Fashion Pinterest board) I noticed a trend, Jewel tones, leopard print and very preppy/ classic styles are what I am looking for and are what I should be translating into my wardrobe. Cardigans, stripes, polka dots, crew neck sweaters, button up blouses, graphic tees, pencil skirts, straight leg/ boyfriend jeans,  and blazers are what catch my eye. Sparkle also catches my eye, it can be really classy as long as it isn't like full on body glitter. A shimmery top or a shimmery skirts with basics oh so pretty!

Here is a great work look from 26 & Counting! It has a blazer, crew neck sweater, button up, and slim/ straight pants!

Here is a great weekend look/ casual Friday look from Refined Style.

This is also a great look from Polyvore

Here is Kate Hudson's adorable pencil skirt and graphic tee look. 

Blake Lively looks adorable in pretty much anything she chooses, but I am particularly liking the look of her comfy cardigan and slim pants. 

When I feel put together things tend to go so much better, than if I just put something on and head out the door. It helps to keep a positive attitude. I am going shopping with my mama and Little Man on Thursday, I am ready to rock this. Tomorrow night I will be putting the finishing touches on my list.

Day 12: Ode to the High Chair

Finally, we are feeling well in our house. Little Man is napping right  now, because he only napped 40 minutes at daycare today. I will probably regret letting him rest later, but I personally am a big believer in sleeping when your body is signaling for you to do so. He is still getting better.

We put together the high chair last night, and lets just say that I LOVE IT! He can be where all the action is (primarily in my kitchen) but easily be moved out of the way. I didn't really have a good place for him to sit before. He seems to like it. He currently has a toy while sitting in his chair to distract him from thinking it is time to eat. Last night I made potatoes and today I made an apple spice cake for a meeting that we will have in a little bit.

I can tell how awesome this is going to be. 

Saturday, October 11, 2014

Day 11: Sick Baby

Some days as a parent are just hard... Little Man has been sick. That means this mama isn't getting any sleep. I  am really crabby, and I am behind at everything. Especially, at work now. I have a lot of translating work to get done next week and we have a shortened work week.

Friday, October 10, 2014

Day 10: Some slow cooker lovin'

I grew up calling a slow cooker a Crockpot, it is the same thing with all facial tissues being Kleenex. 

There was a week after Little Man was first born in which we ate frozen pizzas for a solid week! Sometimes with plates, sometimes with paper towels. That period of time is still fuzzy, and we are super classy.It was during this dark dark time of frozen pizza and meals from a box that we discovered a glorious tool. This tool has become my bff while exploring the road to domestic goddess status. I am not holding my breath that I will ever reach that level of domesticity. I am pretty sure that after my Crockpot wears a cape, because it is constantly saving dinner here! It is so nice to know that I have dinner/ supper already prepared and by the time that we get home from work it will be ready to be eaten. It allows me to focus on my work while I am there and on my family when we are home.

Today's specialty is Zesty BBQ Chicken Sandwiches. I had all of the ingredients on hand and buns that we need to eat. It really was the perfect mix. It smells super delicious! I am going to try pairing it with Honey Cinnamon roasted Sweet potato bites. (both recipes are below). I am all about trying new recipes, but I am a little gun-shy about making anything way out of my league. So I have created a system that seems to work for me. I go to my favorite recipe website(s), type in a few key words and start looking at the recipes. The first step is do they look/ sound good. Second step is making sure I have the ingredients... and Finally, I read the reviews. I don't read all of them unless they are 10 or less, but I will pick reviews at random. I also read reviews, because there are a lot of commentators that great advice about how to prepare it or how to improve it!

Thursday, October 9, 2014

Day 9: Unrealistic Expectations

There are a lot of unrealistic expectations placed on mothers by our society. These expectations include everything from a mama's appearance to how they spend there time. Let's be real I don't have time for anyone else's expectations. It is my opinion that if a mama is healthy and her kiddo(s) are healthy than give that mama some space and encouragement. I personally find these kind of articles refreshing:What Jennifer Garner's Everlasting Baby Bump Means for Mothers. You've got this mama! I hope you have a great day!

Wednesday, October 8, 2014

Day 8: It takes a village

Many cultures around the world have something similar to the adage "It takes a village to raise a child" and while this is true for any parent, I have found this to be especially true for working mamas. What is tricky though is being able to ask for help. For whatever reason there seems to be a hang up about that. Maybe the unrealistic ideal that we mamas are suppose to be able to do it all-- work, care for our child/ren, keep our homes and every other responsibility that we have. It just isn't possible. I have learned a lot about prioritizing these last seven months because I don't just switch between being a mama and being a teacher. These two aspects of my life need to co-exist peacefully and sometimes they don't. That is when I need to be brave enough to ask for help and it is critical to have clear expectations and priorities of myself. Honestly, the last thing I have time for is feeling guilty.

Tuesday, October 7, 2014

Day 7: Is It Enough?

Some days there just aren't enough hours in a day, but then again would we spend them wisely if there were more hours? One of the things that I sometimes struggle with the most is: "Am I doing enough for my son?" Sure he has plenty to eat, clean diapers, warm clothes and lots of snuggles from us. But are we doing enough? I think that this is a common question in our society because we have been weaned off our contentment. It is very easy to feel like what you have or what you give isn't enough, but truly it is. Providing a safe and loving space is more than enough. I know that while I am working he is well cared for, and while sometimes I do miss some  his firsts-- Little Man is more than thrilled to share his new skills and tricks with us later. Every family  needs to decide what is best for them, and there is no shame in that. There are many benefits having stay at home parents, and there are benefits to having working parents... maybe we will cover that at a later date... but what you do for your kids is enough, and they are soaking up your love. You aren't just a parent you are a superhero.

Monday, October 6, 2014

Day 6: Why Sleep?

Little Man is a great sleeper as a general rule of thumb.Though, there are these nights like last night where he just isn't interested in sleep. He went to bed somewhere around 8:30 last night. We don't keep a clock in his room. And then he was up at a quarter to one, quarter after four and he was up for the day at six this morning. I am of course the one that gets up with him in the middle of the night. Fot whatever reason when he was scooting himself in his crib he kept hitting his head. I have no idea what he was doing in there.

I just saw him yawn. It's okay. This mama is tired too. So, today (usually my day off) will hopefully be a day of rest, but most likely it will not. We are trying to get everybody's laundry done for the week, because this week is really really busy. Also, harvest is actually starting here, we have had almost a week and half of rain. We usually are very thankful for the rain, but we have also had snow flurries. Nobody is ready for winter yet, especially not the farmers.

So far we are hanging out in our jammies doing some laundry. We might get more exciting as our day continues on.

Sunday, October 5, 2014

Day 5: It's Okay If You Are Tired and It Looks Like your House Imploded.

As I type this Little man is laying on my chest, on his tummy. Every once in awhile he acts as if he is going to kick something. His nuk landed on the floor next to the chair, thankfully it was in my reach. Yesterday I was hoping to get all of these home chores done, but it didn't happen. I was unmotivated and when Owen was   awake he was unhappy if he couldn't see me. So, between my lack of motivation and him we didn't get anything accomplished in terms of chores. We did however play, jump in the jumperoo, chill to baby music while playing with toys, work on a gift for friends, and eat, and rock-a-bye in his room. He took three hour long naps and while he was sleeping I worked on a friends baby book.

And you know what? Everything is all right, it was more important for us to just be together yesterday playing, learning and growing than it was for us to be working on our house.. The mess is still here, and the laundry is now sorted but still in the baskets, but my son will never be seven months and two days ever again! I know that there is some guilt felt by moms who are working, but it seems like the house is always a disaster... because honestly my house is that way too. But, our children are growing and learning and always changing it and I would rather spend time to my son opposed to having a perfectly clean and organized house.

Housework can always be done at another time, like nap time. If you are still in the stage of your child's life where you need to nap during nap time, don't feel guilty about it. This stage will pass quickly and you will get more sleep. So, I am going to wash, rinse, and dry some dishes while I listen to Little Man self soothe himself on his monitor. He is ready for a nap now, because our morning has already been filled with learning experiences.

It's okay mama, everything will get done eventually. Enjoy your little one, for soon they will be too big.

Saturday, October 4, 2014

Day 4: A Gray Saturday

Sometimes we get up early, and sometimes we sleep in. Today was an early day, Little Man woke  up and at 6:15 he wanted OUT of his crib. He snuggled with mama and he played and talked to his daddy, he has had his breakfast and he has played with one of his toys. Currently he is just chilling in his bouncy seat.

It is not really a weekend of being outside it is cloudy, windy, and only suppose to reach highs of 50 degrees (F). It did try to spit snow flurries out yesterday as I was leaving school. My goal is to get apples picked during nap time, but we will see how this goes! We also need to do laundry and wash dishes (we don't have a dishwasher). We aren't always exciting here, but that is okay. A gray Saturday is meant for jammies at least part of the day.

What are you up to today?

Friday, October 3, 2014

Day 3: Breaking up with my Closet

I have been cleaning out my closet, which really translates to a huge pile of clothes by my dresser in my room. The reason why I am getting rid of them? They either don't fit me or my post-baby lifestyle. Mostly they don't fit me...
If you are new hear I will give you a quick snapshot of who I am. I am a late twenty-something who lives in the midwest (winter will soon be upon us), wife, and  mama. My son is known as Little Man and he is seven months old. I am a teacher and Migrant Family Advocate. We also have an approximately three year old rescue, Annie, who seems to get a little more rambunctious everyday. I thought they were suppose to mellow as they got older. 

As you can tell from my little snapshot we are busy. We seem to always be on the move. When little man becomes more mobile I will be even more on the move.

I can't have super high maintenance clothing because realistically they just lay on the floor in my laundry room forever! I hate laundry! I don't want to spend all of my time doing laundry, especially since my time with my little family is restricted to evenings and weekends. My new clothes need to be machine washable and be able to be put in the dryer! I do hang dry my pants now, because I have shrunk some beyond what would be considered appropriate for anything. The other reason as to why it needs to be machine washable is the fact that Little Man is starting solid foods... and I have already  had green beans and sweet potatoes rubbed onto my clothes. I imagine the things that get wiped on my clothes will only continue to get worse. Right now I am trying to keep it a little bit more neutral and adding color through pieces that I already own and am able to keep wearing. Eventually color will be back in full force. My wardrobe is still in this awkward transition.

It is important to know what works for your body... I like long and lean jeans from GAP-- they are super comfy, long enough, and have a little bit of a  higher waist. I do like sleeveless items, because I tend to get warm, so I can layer appropriately and still look classy, I love the structure of blazers. The flowyness of tie blouses, and I don't like anything with a super close fit. This is an interesting development because 90% of my closet was fitted. After having my son, I am just not interested in that style anymore. It is an adjustment and I need to have things in my closet that work for being a mama and that work for my job.Our dress code is business casual.

I don't have all of the answers, but I do know that this mama needs to wear something! So, I am breaking up with my closet, which has been difficult, after many years of having pieces that I truly love and wore all the time.  REMIXABILITY is the name of my wardrobe game... because when everyone woke up late and I have to get myself and LM ready to head out the door in a total of under 15 minutes EVERYTHING has to MATCH! Sometimes LM doesn't match, but he is in daycare and the kiddos don't know their colors yet. Not that I am speaking from personal experience or anything.

One aspect of my real life is that I wear like the same 6 outfits on repeat, because sometimes the wardrobes are working against me. I don't always see things that I love, nor do I see things that will necessarily be easy to care for. Eventually I will love my closet once again, but until we get to the place I will just be patient. This time is a time of self discovery and growth. Even though I feel like "I have nothing to wear" right now, things will continue to get better!

Thursday, October 2, 2014

Day 2.5: Confession from a working mama

As soon as  little man was put to bed I through on sweatpants. I am rocking the ever classy look of dressed down casual. I have on my blouse and cardigan with college sweatpants. As soon as I know that he is asleep for sure I will most likely go to bed after feeding the dog. It is a quarter to 8 pm here!
Man am I looking forward to the weekend when we can just relax, and hopefully have a playdate with friends.

Day 2: Are you an English Muffin?

What are you even talking about lady? NO! I am not an English Muffin, I am a person.

I was doing my morning routine of getting Little Man up and changed (not dressed, we have jammy days on the weekend). He was in a good mood and so I popped an English muffin in the toaster. I like them lightly toasted two times with butter and peanut butter-- all melty and delicious... well, that didn't happen. LM was in a state and I needed to tend to him and I forgot all about my English Muffin for two days in the toaster. When I finally remembered that I had once had an English Muffin it was all dried out and gross. This sadly is not the first time that I have done this.I have no explaination of how this happened other than the fact that at that exact moment in time there was something more important than having breakfast. As moms we are hardwired to care for our children, but sometimes we do that at the expense of our health and well-being. I have done it too, skipping a meal because my son needed me or because I wanted to take advantage of a peaceful moment.

I encourage you to stop and just breathe in the life happening around you, these moments go really fast. Besides you don't want to be told that you are an old English Muffin. 

Wednesday, October 1, 2014

The First of October

The first of each month is a time of newness and excitement. There are many questions still unanswered, and one of those questions is "What will unfold this month?" Today is October 1st, and while the first official day of Autumn/ Fall is September 1st here in the midwest. The first of October is much more fall like. September has unpredictable weather here, certainly but it has more tinges of summer than October. Who knows what this month will bring, but for us it is a time of excitement. It is Owen's first fall. There will be leaves, tractor rides, and pumpkins for sure. Though, there will be other firsts as we work our way through the fruits and vegetables, Little Man will become more independent and more mobile.

So, while we wait for new experiences to come about tonight we are enjoying the familiar. Soup on a chilly day, playing with toys, LM's sweet potatoes, and of course snuggles. While new things are exciting these are the things that are a part of our journey. I hope you grab a warm drink and join me as I reflect, try new things and enjoy my son's first ever October!

Monday, September 29, 2014

October 2014: 31 Days of Real Life

I am going to be spending the next 31 days (Starting October first) talking about real life.My focus is on what really happens, here in my home and heart. I am a working mama, things can get hectic around here especially when it seems busier than usual and there is mount washmore to try and scale. My goal is to encourage you in real life... I am figuring this out as I go, and will be tackling a variety of topics as I go through this month. Motherhood is new to me and I am just trying to enjoy one day at a time. I will using this particular post to hold all of my links for the next 31 days. My goal is to write every single day for 31 days! Thanks for joining me on this crazy ride.


Week 2

Week 3
Day 15

Week 4
Day 19

Week 5

Monday, April 28, 2014


I joined bloglovin to help me manage the blogs that I would like to follow. I am still trying to figure out how to work it, but eventually I will figure it out. It does seem like a handy platform, especially now that my personal computer has gone defunct and the Doc does not have the same bookmarks that I did!

Thursday, April 17, 2014

My computer is dead...

My computer died! Like I don't think there is any way to revive it dead... which is just fantastic because that means I don't have a computer to which I can upload my pictures. I am going to have to rethink how we are going to do things around here. I'm disappointed but I am sure that we will survive. I just might have to rethink how we are going to blog.... I just wanted to give a little shout out to let everyone know that I haven't forgotten about you...

In Other News

LM is currently at 6 weeks old! He is growing so fast, and sadly he has grown out of the super teeny tiny newborn clothing! His pants all of the sudden looked liked shorts, which was a dead give away that he had outgrown them. Starting next week we have two more weeks until I return to work and he begins daycare. He will be in the same building with me (at least for most of the day). I'm sure that it will go well!

I'm officially six weeks postpartum and I have been feeling great! I am enjoying spending my time with little man and we are starting to get a little bit of a routine down, though I will be the first to admit that it is not perfect! A week ago Monday the weather was in the seventies (yesterday we had a blizzard) and even though it was windy we were able to get outside and walk a little bit. I just put him in his little snowsuit. It was nice to not be stuck in the house, and it was good to do some walking. That is what I am most looking forward too, being able to take Owen out in the stroller. I was cleared at my appointment to begin adding more things to our daily life. Which to me sounds fabulous after being on limited movement restrictions since week 8 of the pregnancy. I am only 10 pounds away from my goal weight, which is really exciting. I am not super worried about it, because I know once the weather warms up there will be a lot of room for activity.

I am looking at my wardrobe trying to figure out what I need, since I don't want to spend tons of money on this awkward in between phase.  A lot of my tops do fit me, so I should be good there... I am going to focus mostly on bottoms. I am going to circumvent the pant issue by wearing skirts, it should be warming up here soon weather-wise, which means they will be much more practical. I have one skirt with an elastic band, so I am looking for a couple more that have that flexibility combined with an a-line cut. I am going to check out Clothes Mentor, Goodwill and Savers in a couple of weekends. Hopefully I will find things that work then. I am hoping to find one pair of jeans there. Jeans are the one pant that I am looking for, because I can wear them to work and home... and they really are appropriate for a variety of occasions. I am still planning out my wardrobe, and will be writing a post about it soon on how I plan on transitioning to this new lifestyle through my wardrobe.


Tuesday, April 8, 2014

The Living Room Project

I have not gotten 40 bags out in 40 days, however I have  been working on my living room as I have had time. It isn't anything major,b tu I'm not looking for major projects. I'm looking for completed tasks. The main reason I have been so relaxed about this is because I have been spending time with my infant son.

I did make labels for my storage boxes and spent today working on the project intermittently. It is not quite completed, and I will probably need to create more labels. I am about little victories and the big picture. I will keep working on this room until it makes sense to move on towards the next one. I will keep chipping away at my living room list that I have. 

Thursday, April 3, 2014

7x7 Remix- Season Transitions

Today I am officially one month postpartum and am now feeling ambitious enough to leave our house. I have had some really successful runs with LM and now I am ready to do more... but the lingering question is "What do I wear?" Realistically I knew that I wasn't going to be able to fit back into all of my pre-pregnancy clothing, but I was seriously hoping that I would be a miracle case and ta-da I can wear all of my clothes again. Not the case, I am still wearing my maternity clothing but I need to rethink my outfits. When Natalia from Ma  Nouvelle Mode announced that she was hosting a 7x7 outfit remix with Cyndi from Walking in Grace & Beauty... I was excited because it is just the thing that I need to reset how I think about the closet.

I chose very basic pieces to remix so that I can flex my muscles with remixing. I have only worn a couple of these outfits, in the interest of full disclosure the weather has been dismal and I haven't wanted to take LM out and about. These outfit choices are great options for the changing seasons, since we are in a warning for 7-12 inches of snow. Spring isn't in our forecast for awhile unfortunately.

I chose the following pieces: A short sleeve ruffle front navy blue dress, a camel open front long sleeved cardigan, a black tank top, dark wash jeans, a multi-colored animal print inspired top, a chambray top, a black skirt, and black skinny pants. Here are the outfits!

This outfit is just a cardigan and a dress until I had layers and a little bit of interest to it. The scarf is from Target a couple of years ago and is a brightly colored Aztec print. It is really warm and one of my favorite scarves. It is hard to tell, but I added a skinny gold belt and bright blue tights. The tights were something that I had never tried before but I really wanted to try them. I found a couple of pairs for 1.50 each. I figured for that price it would be worth trying the trend. I love it! I also have a pair of burgundy and purple tights to dry with something else. 

 This outfit is nothing fancy. I was just trying to get out of the door. I also was wearing gray leggings, because it was cold outside and tights seemed very difficult since we were trying to get out the door in a timely fashion. It works, but it isn't fantastic by any means.
 Jeans and a top. Nothing earth shattering here, but I honestly don't think that I have ever worn this top with just jeans. I think I have always worn it with my black skinny pants or with black dress pants. I think that this would be fun with a cardigan in a solid color and a few bangles.
 camel cardigan, black tank top, and jeans... with a scarf. I was on pinterest and saw a picture about how to quickly change your regular scarf into an infinity scarf and let me tell you, I am OBSESSED. It seems really odd but it totally adds more versatility to my outfits, because on their own-- they aren't super exciting.
This outfit I'm super excited to try. I found the inspiration for this on pinterest... and I think it would be fun to wear with burgundy tights and my leopard print wedges or even my black suede maryjanes. I'm not quite up to wearing 3" wedges quite yet. Especially not with all of the slop on the ground.
 I know that there at tons of people out there would question wearing camel and black together, but for whatever reason it just seems right to me... though, in all honesty this doesn't seem like a brown to me. Pre-pregnancy I wore black and camel together a lot because the colors were close to the colors in the aforementioned leopard wedges.
Chambray shirt, black tank top, and black skinny jeans. It is another great basic outfit. Comfortable and easy to move in. It is also easy to give more personality with jewelry, scarves, and shoes. These things can completely revolutionize an outfit even though I have not been very good at wearing them of late. I really just need to get better about planning ahead with little man.

I have to relearn dressing myself, because I don't have the same body that I did pre-pregnancy, but I am okay with that. The basics are the same I just need to find the right silhouette and probably pants for me and my new lifestyle of chasing little man around (he is still really easy to catch ;)

Wednesday, April 2, 2014


I haven't blogged since March first, because on March second we checked into the hospital at 9:30 pm to be induced and we didn't leave the hospital until March sixth in the evening.  I have been busy enjoying getting to know my son. While I have had tons of ideas rolling around in my head, but I didn't have the energy to write between feedings and trying to get some sleep. Tomorrow (Thursday, April 3, 2014) I will be introducing my son Owen on the blog. His bloggy name will be Little Man  (LM), so hopefully you will come back to meet him tomorrow. I will tell a little bit of his birth story, share some super cute pics, and will write about the first month of my experience, as I journey into mommyhood. Eventually I will get back on track for decluttering etc, but right now I am soaking it all in, I am loving spending so much time with LM-- the house chores that don't get done today  will still be there tomorrow. Owen's newborn stage/ babyhood will only last so long. I fully realize that there will come a time when he won't want to snuggle with his mama.

So, I am a little bit sad that I didn't keep up this blog if only to record the comings and goings of our daily lives, but spending all of this time with Little Man definitely is worth it.

I hope you will come back tomorrow to introduce the new man in my life!

Until then,

Saturday, March 1, 2014

Part 1 of 40 Days, 40 Bags: The Living Room

Last year, I participated in 40 Days, 40 Bags for the first time! I loved the experience and while I didn't get as much done as I was hoping too I am excited to be participating again this year. Though, realistically my first week is going to be a little relaxed. Since the baby will be here by then! 

Our living room is the biggest public space in our house (our bedroom is equally as large, but we don't have friends hanging out in there.) We have our TV stand and TV, our couch, two end tables, 3 chairs, and our coffee table which is actually my grandma's World War 2 army trunk. We also have a large shelving unit from Ikea that my mom and I designed to provide us with some very necessary storage. You have probably heard me say it before-- We have NO storage! I have been working on getting things put away where they belong, but it is a very slow process! 

I have also been trying to get our laundry done, so that I don't have to think about what we are going to wear after the baby comes. It is also where I usually do our sorting, folding, and it gets used as a drying rack as well. It creates a lot of chaos in this space. There isn't a lot that we can do about it... I hate using our clothesline (when it is nice outside) because I feel like I have to rewash everything because things get so dusty. That isn't very helpful in terms of cost or energy efficiency. 

Today, I made a rough plan of what I want our shelving unit to hold, it is prime real estate in our house and I want to make sure that we getting the best use out of the space as I organize and declutter other parts of our house. I feel like there is constantly other things that I need to get done, before I can move on to another project. It totally doesn't help my ADD brain. It is especially frustrating because I feel like I am never done with a project... but I guess that is how it is with home ownership. I will just keep working on it as diligently as I can. 

This year I don't have a "schedule". This is because I underestimate how much time things are going to take. This is discouraging because I don't get as much done as I think that I should. My plan this year is to make a list of tasks that I want to get done in that space besides decrapifying. I will also be doing cleaning after I get through the purging stage. I need to keep our house a little cleaner with the wee one, so I am going to be trying out some different methods to find a hybrid of ideas that work with my family, schedule, and space. Here is what I am hoping to get done besides organizing our shelving:
  • Label boxes of crafting and office supplies. It needs to be easier than having to open every box to find what you are looking for.
  • Repair lampshades. The top trim keeps coming off the lampshades. I don't understand why they do that. They are new... and one was even returned because it did that before. So, I am going to just glue the trim back on and be done with it. 
  • Set up the pack n' play. We need a space to change the baby down here and so we need to get that set up. 
  • Set up the sound system. It isn't the end of the world if we don't, but I figure we might as well be using what we have. 
  • Hang wall art of some sort. We have one wall space that is completely empty, but unfortunately it is right above our heater. The Doc doesn't think that anything paper will be a good idea. I am sure we have some artwork that can go up there and will look great. 
  • We need curtain tie-backs. The living room gets a lot of light, but the curtains don't necessarily stay open. I am thinking that I will make something out of ribbon. 
The goal is to make our space more usable for our little family! So, tonight's agenda is finishing up the laundry, putting clothing from the couch away, and dealing with this little pile of miscellaneous things in the middle of our living room floor. I also want to find a new space for our stroller. I think I will just put that in the back corner for now.

Thursday, February 27, 2014

Baby Preparations

Today was an immensely relaxing day, and for that I am incredibly  grateful! The Doc had a staff meeting to attend, other than that it was his day off... so we ran errands together. I love when we get to run errands together, mainly because it doesn't happen very often. It is usually him or I getting the necessities, but rarely is it us together due to schedules etc. So we wandered through Target for pop 10- 12 packs for $5 (it is on coke products, but with spring around the corner our consumption of pop/soda/ coke whatevs you call it, increases significantly), we bought two Dr. Seuss board books for the baby, since they are on sale in honor of Dr. Seuss's  birthday in March. They have some great specials on books, that would be fun for Easter baskets! We also bought diapers in size 2, since we don't know how big baby is going to be. I had a coupon and it was buy 2 boxes get a $10 gift card, and we bought Easter candy! The Cadbury hard sugar shell eggs, with dark chocolate. They are my favorite, but you can only get them at Christmas and Easter. We then went to visit The Docs grandma, we had a great visit. We had lunch at Burger King, neither of us had been inside since they tore down the old one and completely rebuilt last summer. We then went to our appointment, which lasted about 15 minutes. We haven't heard the results yet, which means I am sure that they are grand! We had our repaired and we actually have heat in it, and it is amazing... if only it will stay that way until we can replace it with something newer. On our way home we got raspberry leaf tea and then we just relaxed at home a little bit before we did some finishing touches on the nursery... we hung the door curtain and the baby quilt... I forgot to have The Doc attach our changing pad to the back of the dresser, so we will have to do that another time... I also made labels for all of the little contianers in the nursery andthe dreser drawers. I am sure that I will have to do this again, but for now it works. I just didn't want anyone to have to think about where we have placed things. Quick and easy is how we like things here. Today is focused on finishing up laundry, because things keep coming up and we just can't seem to get it done. Tonight when The Doc comes home we are going to do a full house deep cleaning/ disinfect. It hasn't been done in awhile and it would be good to have everything done before the baby comes. The whole 9 yards... vacuuming, sweeping, mopping, dusting... that is my motivation for getting all of our laundry done, so that I can get our household laundry done-- so that everything is ready to roll.

Tuesday, February 25, 2014

It's a Jungle in There!

As of right now (it is 9:55 am) there is no baby, and so I have decided that I am going to use some of this time that I have to work on some projects for the nursery. I have the crib up, the bedding washed and on the bed, I have toys that we have organized, and I have organized the dresser drawers. It is just the little last minute things that need to be done, like hanging up the door curtain (our nursery doesn't have a door and I didn't think it was worth the effort of trying to find a custom made door that would match the rest of them.)We have a crib quilt to hang on the wall, and a changing pad to attach to the dresser. All relatively minor things. Eventually I would like to get an under the crib storage container for things like clothing that is too big or too small and extra diapers and wipes. My feelings are that since we are in such a tiny room we should make use of all of the space that we can. I would like to do a reading nook in the room, I even have the perfect little chair for it, but that is a project for another day. As is the name banner that I want to make for the room. We are not 100% on names for the baby yet, and so that project will just have to wait as well. I do have a fairly good idea of what I want to make. When I asked The Doc what theme we should use to decorate the nursery, his suggestion was jungle animals. So, that is what we have a room filled with monkeys, alligators, giraffes, elephants, turtles (and other assorted animals) in really bright colors! I think it is really fun! I will take pictures of our nursery once everything is ready. Today I am going to be making labels for everything in the nursery (as in the cabinet and the drawers) I have spent so much time working on it that I don't others to be frustrated that they cannot find what they are looking for since it was my pregnancy induced mind that came up with the set up. My plan is to laminate them, my mom is sick and so using her laminator right now isn't going to work. I can just do that later. I have my punch out and at the ready. I love punches, they are just so easy to use!

Monday, February 24, 2014

A Season of Waiting

Right now there are a lot of things that I am waiting on. There are projects at work that I am waiting to hear about, we are waiting for baby to come, I am waiting for spring to arrive because I honestly just can't handle anymore cold, and I am waiting to see what our year with our brand new baby will bring. I like routine and I right now I feel like we are just adrift, which we sort of are. Every day gets a little better, and everyday we get a little bit closer to meeting our baby. We are still waiting for baby to come, we are currently 5 days over due... I just keep reminding myself that baby will make it's grand entrance when it is ready. Not when The Doc or I think that it should make it's grand entrance. I had another doctor's appointment today. I was hooked up to the monitors.I dislike being hooked up to monitors, but I like the results. The best part about that monitor is that I get to hear baby's heartbeat. It was showing that I was having some contractions but nothing consistent. I have been at the point of having contractions for the last two week, but they haven't been causing a lot of change. I personally think that the baby is contemplating making its appearance soon. So, while I was waiting for baby to decide if he/ she was going to come today I took a nap in the living room, made myself lunch, vacuumed the nursery upstairs and collected garbage from the nursery. I want the doc to help me with the last two projects we have to do in the nursery. (We also have to install the carseat base in my car, but that doesn't seem to tricky and it has been to cold to fully empty out my car... that and it is really exhausting for me to keep trying to carry things out. I need help with that project.) It doesn't seem like a lot but it was enough to wear me out. I saw a blurb on Facebook about 40 Days, 40 Bags and I am so excited! I accomplished a lot last time, even though I did get sidetracked with illness and trying returning to work early. I don't now how much I am going to get done this time either, but I figure that every little bit helps. The Doc and I have too much stuff, but amazingly enough we didn't gather it all in a day. I have been working on it a little bit here and there since Easter. I think what I am going to do is to make a list of tasks that I want to do for each room, and then work on them either as I have time or the help. That way I can decide how much time I can devote to a certain project and not be stressed out about it. I have some general ideas of what I want to do, and I have some things that I would like to implement for baby. Things like a rotating toy system etc. I don't want the baby to grow up thinking that it is normal to be overwhelmed by your stuff. I want to be very intentional about what we bring into our home and how we organize it. Instead of having to take care of all of our stuff all the time I want to be able to spend time doing activities with our family and friends. This is where I am at today, who knows what tomorrow will bring.

Thursday, February 20, 2014

What's Cookin'?

Here is what is cooking for dinner last night (Wednesday): Easy Balsamic Chicken Roasted Carrots It won't be ready until 8:20-ish, but that is okay The Doc didn't get home from the sale barn until 7:30 and is currently moving snow. These recipes are brand new to me and I am very excited to try them! I love easy recipes, seriously the most time consuming part of prep was peeling the carrots and cutting the tops off and defrosting the chicken! Seriously gotta love a recipe like that! My house also smells totally amazing right now! I figure I will make some instant rice to go with it and we will have an easy peasy dinner! It was delicious, I did check on the carrots and chicken half way through and ended up adding more liquid to them. If I had left them I think they would have been very dry.You just need to keep an eye on them. One of my goals for 2014 is to limit the amount of waste that we have... and what I am starting with is limiting the amount of waste that we have in the kitchen. Historically we have thrown away tons of food because we didn't get to it before the expiration date, or we didn't feel like eating that particular leftover for the hundredth time, or it just got lost in the deep dark recesses of the fridge. It was frustrating to me because we spent all of this money on food we didn't eat. It was a waste of our resources, especially in light of all those who don't have enough food. I have had to become more intentional about making things that can be used in more than one way or will last a little bit longer. While we are not perfect at this, we definitely have come a long way in terms of what we need to throw out. Unfortunately food does spoil before we get time to eat it, but we are definitely getting much better at it.

Wednesday, February 19, 2014

The Next Step

I mentioned yesterday that I had submitted a panel to of mamas and bloggers, to get some of their insight into how to dress post postpartum for my business casual settings... because honestly that is what I feel most comfortable in. I like to have a pj or sweat day as much as the next girl, but honestly I can only wear those types of clothing for so long during the day/ all day before it starts to negatively impact my mood. I was so excited to read all of the ladies responses to the question as well as the responses from their readers. While I am barely dipping my toe into mamahood via the newborn stage (as in we are waiting for baby to arrive and are still patient enough for that to happen)it is good to keep strategies dealing with tantrums or picky eaters in the back of my mind. I think this series will open up a lot of opportunity for dialogue amongst mommies... because honestly Mompetitions: "Nobody ain't got time for that!!" "Where does this sage advice go from here?", you may be asking yourself. I started looking at the recommendations and started doing a little bit of online window shopping. While my mind is fairly clear and not sleep deprived! I haven't bought anything yet, because obviously I haven't had the baby yet, and I will want to wait a little while before purchasing clothes. Here are some things that I have come up with from the Must Ask Mama series and from Ain't No Mom Jeans to get some ideas of what I am looking for and what will mesh with my personal style. Gray Knit Plaid Skirt Black Calf A-Line Skirt I do love skirts and I do think that wearing skirts would be appropriate not only with the transition my body will inevitably be going through, but also with the transition of seasons. Spring is cray-cray up here in the upper midwest. We have 80 degree temperature swings within a 24 hour window of time. Wrap dresses are definitely popular with the postpartum dressing crowd, and it is easy to see why. They mask poochiness, they can be great for nursing and I personally believe that it is a very classy shape! I have a red and beige printed wrap blouse that I am excited to be wearing again after baby comes. I was so sad when I couldn't make it work anymore. I did find this lovely wrap dress though! You may or may not know about my love of animal prints. Leopard Print Faux Wrap Dress I personally think that this would be fun with a blazer, which brings me to the my next tip.. Find a boyfriend blazer. I will be honest I have personally had a hard time understanding what all of the hype about "boyfriend" styling clothing is all about... it wasn't my style, because I prefer my clothes more fitted. But I can see how this would be appealing while working on getting your body back into shape. I found a couple of blazers that I love right now, which would be great for right now, but won't break the bank either. Because here we are all about thrift and quality! Black Boyfriend Blazer and there is also this option from Target Color Block Draped Front Blazer (Black & Blue) I feel like I this particular blazer might be a little bit too much, but I can' help but love it! I think the draping is what sold me. It is hiding the belly without looking like it is intentionally trying to hide the belly. Black Pants: I do love my maternity black pants, they fit really well and were super comfortable... which I can wear until I can fit back into my NY & Co wide leg black pants. Those pants seriously are my favorite ever! Comfortable stylish and I could wear them halfway through my second trimester... man I miss those pants so I should be able to wear them again after I get back tot he five month pregnant looking stage. ;) I also bought myself a pair of maternity skinny jeans in black that will work out great while transitioning. I almost didn't buy my skinny jeans in black, but I am so glad that I did! I love them, and would seriously wear them everyday if it wasn't for the fact that someone would notice and totally call me on it. These are definitely a possibility, black skinny jeans. Tunics are another popular on postpartum dressing, as they should be! Tunics are awesome... I have some that are a little bit shorter that I think will work great again. I wore them also half way through second trimester... But I was also looking for some extra inspiration- Coral Tunic and Floral Tunic Some other tops that I adore the shape of and think would be great are: This Lace Chiffon Tank and the shape of this Anchor Print Tank Top. I am not sure I could go for that exact print, but I thought the shape was really nice. I really like this whole outfit from anthropologie The top is roomy and would hide s poochy tummy and the jeans just look really nice. Some other flowy tops that I just love are these: a pattern peplum, a pretty button down (though I wouldn't wear something see through or that low cut), great ideas from aint' no mom jeans. I have found that I tend to go for sleeveless because I get so stinking hot! It is way easier to where short sleeve or sleeveless and through over my jean jacket or a sweater! Another thing that I am loving are these cardigans and super chunky knits. They are very versatile for work and home. I am cardigan obsessed. They can be found at very reasonable prices and can be worn mostly all year round depending upon the weight of the fabric. I have worked in some deep-freeze air conditioning locations ;) When I was doing my search I was looking for interest pieces that would jazz up basics like tank tops and t-shirts and other fairly neutral pieces that could be worn with skirts or pants. Here are my top 3 choices from everywhere: a sparkly drape cardigan the amount of sequin/sparkly tops that I wear are steadily increasing. This is more ore less a personal style thing. If you don't like sparkle I am okay with that! a drapey houndstooth cardigan, a cable knit poncho This looks super cozy to me on the days when I am feeling more chilly and can do light layers, This cardigan jacket/ hybrid (I actually like all of these tops, the leggings just aren't my style),love this cardigan (once again I love this whole outfit concept.) New purchases: The last t-shirts I bought pre-maternity are x-small,so I might as well get some comfy t-shirts in the meantime. These Old Navy t-shirts come highly recommended across several blogs, it is also hard to argue with the price. They have very basic colors which would mix and match nicely with everything else. Old Navy's Vintage Style V-Neck Tees There are a lot of things that I haven't been able to control throughout pregnancy, and honestly that is sometimes the hardest part about it. Though, my attitude is something that I can control, so taking the time to think through this and get advice from other mamas makes sense now. Right now is when I am able to fully reason through everything because pre-baby I have been able to sleep through the night! I will be shopping my closet as my body changes once again, and I will probably still be wearing some of my maternity clothes, but I was expecting that. I found items of maternity clothing that I could wear afterwards that don't scream maternity at me. I will once again have to navigate a constantly changing body, but this time I feel a little more prepared for it. My plan will be to shop my closest, consignment shops, and invest in pieces that will go the distance. My maternity wardrobe is neutral dark wash jeans, black skinnies, white jeans, navy blue cords, black skirt, navy blue dress, and a gray and mint dress. I made sure that there were a lot of coordinating pieces so that I could get the most out of what I wear... I also wore a lot of my scarves and jewelry. I have a lot of jewelry-- mostly costumy that livens things up. Tootles xoxo Mrs. Bookworm

Monday, February 17, 2014

Waiting for Baby

The weather is crappy here and the baby hasn't decided to make its' entrance, so I am going to work on some different projects. Today is the day for laundry, cleaning the fridge, dishes (there are only a few), and vacuuming the upstairs mainly the hallway, nursery, and the bedroom. I also have a few boxes that I want to sort through today. I am feeling motivated today, who knows how long that will last so I should probably get started... With all of the preparation for baby, I have also started thinking about what to wear for when I return to work. I had done some research, but everyone was suggesting leggings and t-shirts and very casual clothing which is fine when I am at home. Yet, it does not jive with the professional vibe that needs to be happening with at work. One of the blogs I read One Little Momma is participating in a panel of bloggers who are fielding questions from readers. My question was selected and I think that their responses were super helpful! I am excited to see if there are any responses from readers with ideas in response to my question. So here is this months Must Ask Mama series. One aspect of pregnancy that I have disagreed with the entire time is that you get to the point where you just wear whatever... I didn't want to do that my entire pregnancy, because I do believe that while what you wear is not the end all, be all of pregnancy it is good for your piece of mind to feel as put together and pretty as you can. Being intentional about what I have chosen to wear has given me a little bit of confidence during a time that has had lots of changes going on all at once. Happy Monday everyone!

Monday, January 20, 2014

Oh Cinderella, Cinderella, Cinderella

I could lie to you and tell you that I am a housework goddess, but those of you who know me well know that is not my kind of thing. I HATE housework! It is definitely on my top 5 list of things that I HATE! Though, it is something that really should be done and it is something that has become a little better because I have been working on it more consistently. Doing a little bit of housework a day is way less stressful than trying to clean the entire house just moments before company is arriving. I have been reading flylady.net and springcleaning365.com and both have been very helpful in this new attitude I have towards housekeeping. I still have a long way to go, and many rooms to cover decluttering/ cleaning etc. yet I have hope that I can accomplish these tasks and will be able to do them to the best of my ability which is all that really needs to happen. Besides when our home is put together, clean, and organized it is much easier to have people over.

Sunday, January 19, 2014

2014: Courageous

I was on Pinterest yesterday when one of my friends had pinned this quote onto one of her walls, I think I scrolled past it twice before I actually stopped to read it and, think about it more than a superficial "oh, isn't that nice." kind of way. This quote sums up quite beautifully what I want my theme word for 2014 to be. I want my word to be courageous, because I have so many new tasks coming up this year.
"Do something uncomfortable today. By stepping out of your box, you don't have to settle for what you are- you get to create who you want to become." ~Howard Walstein
I am a twenty-something year old who is a little bit closer to thirty than I care to admit some days, and when you look at how people describe me there are a lot of different descriptions such as teacher, wife, momma (to-be), friend, sister, aunt, etc. All of these adjectives don't describe me as a whole; these adjectives describe different facets of my life that are viewed through a very specific lens.There is a blog that I enjoy following immensely, because of the author's honesty. It is hard to try and figure out what your style is, but to do it in front of others with as much grace as she does is amazing to me. You should check out Audrey's blog Putting Me Together. It is a thoroughly enjoyable read, about making your closet work for you by embracing your lifestyle and your own individual needs. So as I blog this next year I will be creating a journal of my year, and I don't have a specific topic that I will be blogging about, but rather different topics, because here in the middle of nowhere we have a lot of irons in the fire... such as continuing our bathroom remodel. The Doc purchased materials while in town today, there will be some demolition involved, me and the baby will be less involved in the demolition, but I am sure that I will be involved in the putting back together... the unknown arrival date of the baby... Organizing the nursery along with the rest of our house... adjusting to the new roles as parents... I will probably write some about the literacy project that I have been involved in this year, since it has stretched me so much! As I have beenn preparing for baby to come I have also been preparing for post baby, and to be honest I am a little bit disappointed with the information out there about postpartum (a.k.a the fourth trimester) dressing. There are a lot of different adventures popping up this year, and I hope that you stick around to enjoy the ride with me. XOXO

Thursday, January 16, 2014

I have NOTHING to wear!

I am 8ish months pregnant and I feel like I am in a clothing rut! It is making me crazy, I don't like anything that I have to wear because I can't think of any new or creative ways of wearing anything. I am feeling stuck and honestly a little bit frustrated because I don't want to buy new clothing... but I keep thinking in my head that I just need to suck it up and buy new maternity clothes. It was at that moment that I decided to look at this blog and I saw that Caitlin was doing a winter wardrobe remix! I love remixes, they make me think creatively and really stretch my wardrobe into some really fantastic ideas! Here is the scoop! You pick 21 articles of clothing (undergarments, pjs, tank tops, accessories, shoes, tights, and leggings don't count; I would never wear any of these things by them self outside of my home) and then proceed to make 30 outfits. I have a mix of casual and professional wear, since I am still working. Here are my pics/picks:
This is a large portion of my maternity clothes... I think there are only 2 more sweaters and approximately 5 tops that were not selected because of their lack of remixability.Not all of my items are posted because they are in the wash as I was taking photos and writing this. Dresses (2) Gray & Mint Sweater Dress, Navy Blue Ruffle Dress. Bottoms (6)f Jeans, White Jeans, Black Dress Pants, Navy Blue Corduroy Skinnies, Black Skirt, patterned black skirt. Tops(7) Gray Lace T-shirt, Green & White Ruffle Shirt, Black Lace 3/4 Sleeve Top, White Polka Dot Top,Black Empire Waist Tank Top, blue gingham, chambray button down. Sweaters (6) Black & White Cowl Sweater, Gold Cardigan, White Striped open front cardigan, red puffer vest, camel colored open cardigan, Black & Blue striped sweater. Not pictured: Jeans, Black Pants, Blue Gingham Shirt, Chambray Shirt,Black Skirt, Camel Colored Cardigan. Here is to my fashion adventure!