callie :: nine

Oh Callie. My sweet, sweet second born. I haven’t written an actual update for you since you were 3 months old. You’ve just been keeping me on my feet ever since! So here we are at 9 months!! Insane.

wpid-img_20150125_170235_wm.jpgwpid-img_20150225_190909_wm.jpgYou are a little mover and shaker. You started crawling at 6 months. And about 2 days later started pulling yourself to a standing position. Hashtag trouble.

wpid-img_20150216_153645_wm.jpgYou also got your first two teeth when you were 6 months. You added two more quickly after. And you are no longer interested in baby food. At all. So we try to give you what we are eating. As much as we can. 4 teeth will only get you so far.

wpid-img_20150309_191526_wm.jpgYou are so curious and love discovering new things. You love waving to yourself in the mirror. And giving yourself kisses. It’s just about the cutest thing in the entire world.

Since spring is slowly creeping in, you have been to the park a few times. You seem amazed by the slide. And love the swings.

wpid-img_20150313_055240_wm.jpgYou have so much joy in you. Always smiling. You love laughing with Avery. We just need to work on sleeping better. And not growing up so fast.

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9 months. 19 lbs. 29.25 inches.

Let’s be friends:
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Posted in callie rae, monthly updates | Tagged , | 2 Comments

MN bloggers favorite things 2015

One of my favorite blogger events happened this past weekend. The annual Favorite Things Party! You can read my recap from last year and how it works here.

wpid-img_20150328_133937_wm.jpgMy goodies I brought are hidden in this bag. But I forgot to take a pic of them!! I brought some EOS lip balm, a tiny flower in a tiny pot, some hair binders, and put them all inside a cute little basket from the dollar section from Target. I wish I had bought a basket or two for myself.

wpid-img_20150328_190122_wm.jpgI came home with a cute mug I couldn’t pass up! Some basil that I can’t wait to plant. And a lip stick that turns my lips a cure shade of coral. Perfect for spring.

I missed out on these cute little succulents that have magnets to hang on the refrigerator. So I went out yesterday and bought them myself!

wpid-img_20150330_095429_wm.jpgI love going to these blogger events to see friends I don’t have a chance to see otherwise. And I love meeting new people and finding more blogs to read!

wpid-fb_img_1427761489409_wm.jpgI can’t wait to see you all again soon!!

Let’s be friends:
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it’s spring! a travel pack giveaway!

Spring is finally here, and I’m teaming up with Downy Wrinkle Releaser Plus to share five travel hacks that you’ll love, along with a great giveaway offer. One lucky winner will take home a Travel Pack from Downy Wrinkle Releaser Plus valued at $150 (including a $50 Target gift card!)

Five Travel Hacks You’ll Love

Five travel hacks you'll love (especially #2) - and a giveaway!

1. Roll; Don’t Fold
As you pack, roll your clothes instead of folding them. You’ll be able to fit up to two times the amount of clothing by rolling them as you would by folding them.

2. Pack your “Iron”
And by iron, we mean Downy Wrinkle Releaser Plus. The 3 oz travel size meets airline standards. Slip it into your carry-on bag, and with a simple spray, you’ll be wrinkle free all trip long. (It’s also a great fabric refresher if you have to wear your clothes more than once on vacation.) Click here to read more and grab a coupon.

3. Bring an Empty Water Bottle
After you get through security, several airports have filtered water stands to fill your bottle. You’ll also find that most airport cafes will gladly fill your water bottle as well.

4. Snap a Picture
If you’re checking your luggage, snap a picture of your suitcase contents before you leave the house. If the airline loses your luggage, you’ll be able to use the picture to prove the value of the contents.

5. BYO Blanket
Blankets on airlines are hard to come by these days – and they’re not always washed between flights. If you tend to get cold on planes, or you’re going to be flying overnight, pack your own blanket to stay comfortable.

Enter to Win a Travel Pack from Downy Wrinkle Releaser Plus

One lucky winner will receive a travel pack valued at $150, including a travel tote, a Tervis Tumbler, Downy Wrinkle Releaser Plus and a $50 Target gift card.

Giveaway ends at midnight on Friday, March 20, 2015. Open to US and Canada.

Complete the form below to enter. Good luck!

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currently [march]

So when is somebody going to make it possible for more hours in a day?? I miss being able to sit down to write a blog post! I miss you! Let’s catch up a bit, shall we?

:: dreaming ::

wpid-img_20150218_142548_wm.jpgDreaming about spring. One. Hundred. Percent.

wpid-img_20150303_012525_1_wm.jpgDreaming about sleep. Callie has been awful the last few nights. And will only sleep in the bed with me. I can’t sleep if anyone is touching me. So co-sleeping isn’t ideal for me. I’m hoping that once this tooth pops out, she will be back to normal. Please.

:: planning ::

Birthday parties. Avery turns 3 next month. I’m trying to figure out something fun and not super expensive.

Then Callie is 1 in June. I’m just starting to toss some ideas around for her. It will be here in a blink.

:: making ::

Elaborate sculptures out of Play-Doh. Avery has recently become obsessed with “play clay” as she calls it. I’ve made rainbows, bunnies, snowmen, butterflies, and dinosaurs. They all kinda look the same.

:: baking ::

Ha! Nothing. Next.

:: watching ::

These two loving on each other.

wpid-20150206_161247_1_wm.jpgwpid-img_20150218_102200_wm.jpgwpid-img_20150301_144451_wm.jpgAll day. Everyday. It’s the best.

Let’s be friends:
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cheers pablo

For Christmas Jeremy bought me some vouchers for Cheers Pablo. They recently opened a location in Burnsville, not too far from home. Cheers Pablo is like a canvas and wine type place where they show you how to paint a masterpiece step-by-step. Something I’ve been afraid to try before. Fearless this year.

We got there a little early. We checked in, got a spot, and stopped by the bar for some snacks. Everyone working there was so nice and very helpful. It was a relaxing, welcoming atmosphere.

Each canvas had some pencil lines outlining the main structure of the painting. We then painted over the pencil lines and added some buildings.

wpid-img_20150216_100830_wm.jpgTo be honest, those lines took away a lot of my nerves. I felt a bit more confident knowing I couldn’t screw up that part!

Melissa, our instructor, went at a great pace. I felt like I had plenty of time to complete each step. And a few times I had time to perfect some lines.

Our next step we put down some base colors and added some arches to our bridge.

wpid-img_20150215_141452_wm.jpgI was most nervous about the arches. That was definitely a make-or-break step. But they turned out not horrible!

Next we added some shading and depth to the bridge and sky. We finished off the painting by adding details to the buildings and bringing in some white to contrast the dark colors of the bridge.

wpid-20150215_152031_1_wm.jpgI think my sky turned out a little wonky, but other than that, I like it a lot.

wpid-2015-02-16-10.04.21_wm.jpg.jpegI love that everyone’s paintings turned out different. Jeremy’s is on the right. He even had a great time! We were just so proud that we didn’t massively screw anything up!

The Stone Arch Bridge is one of my favorite places in Minneapolis. I’m so excited to have this hanging in our living room.

wpid-img_20150215_154139_wm.jpgYou can see a bunch of paintings on the back wall. I spotted a few that I would like to try. I guess we will just have to come back for another date night!

Let’s be friends:
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valentine’s day reality

I want to start out by letting you know I am very pro-Valentine’s Day. I love pink, and hearts, and chocolate, and flowers. I love any excuse to tell my loved ones how I feel about them. Even on a made up holiday. wpid-2015-02-16-13.00.25.jpg.jpegHonestly though. This year kinda sucked. By Saturday, Avery and I were going on day 3 of being sick. And Callie has been teething. So runny nose, clingy, and not sleeping very well. And since I had been sick, I didn’t have time/energy to shop for fun gifts. Thankfully I picked up a couple little things the last time I was at Target (impulse buying FTW). And I ordered some cute dolls for the girls beforehand, too. wpid-img_20150214_121031_wm.jpgAnd, yes. I cleaned up my sick, snotty kids and made them take pictures. Jeremy was great and braved the insane cold temperatures and bought me my favorite food. wpid-img_20150214_112819_wm.jpgWhat can I say? He loves me. Avery and I spent the afternoon making valentines. I cut out some hearts and she glued them together, put on some stickers and colored them. She loves arts and crafts. And it keeps her busy/not bored for a long time. Win-win! That night we had our favorite Valentine’s Day dinner. Heart-shaped pizza! wpid-img_20150214_193437_wm.jpgAnd the evening just deteriorated after that. Both girls put up a fight going to bed. Avery eventually went to sleep. But it took Callie until almost 1:30 am. So much screaming. It was a pretty up and down Valentine’s Day. I’m just glad we all survived.

Let’s be friends:
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taking care of me

It’s been a few weeks since I shared with you my mental health issues. I’m going to share with you what I plan on doing to take care of myself.

I called my doctor. They gave me a nice little questionnaire over the phone. That confirmed (to them) that I do have anxiety issues. I have started taking a low dose medication. It’s supposed to take about two weeks to build up enough to start working. But I fell like it’s taken off some of the edge already. Maybe it’s a placebo effect, but I’m glad for some sort of improvement already.

I have a referral for a therapist. I’m a little nervous to call and make an appointment. That’s my goal this week. I have heard some good things about her, so I hope this step will be good for me.

Yoga is one thing I really enjoy and I’m making it a goal to attend more classes. It really helps me clear my mind and I usually feel so good after the hour is up. If for no other reason, I need to keep going because it makes me feel good.

A few times each week, after Jeremy come home from work, I plan on locking myself in my room and writing. Or reading. Or doing my nails. I just need to get some alone time. To reboot. To do things that will make me feel good.

Okay. Now you tell me: What are some of your favorite ways to take care of yourself??

Let’s be friends:
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cough & cold comfort giveaway

Cough and cold season is here, and if you have kids, chances are you’ve already seen your fair share of runny noses and germy hands.

I’m teaming up with Boogie Wipes and Kandoo to offer some great cough and cold tips and give you a chance to win great prizes!

Cough and cold season is here, and if you have kids, chances are you’ve already seen your fair share of runny noses and germy hands. We’re sharing 5 of the best cough and cold tips for parents! #3 is so important!

Five Tips for Staying Comfortable during Cough & Cold Season

1. Use Boogie Wipes!

Boogie Wipes are all about offering comfort during cough and cold season. These soothing saline tissues will offer comfort to the most sensitive noses, while their fun scents will make your kids want to use a Boogie Wipe – instead of their sleeve.

Click here to read more about Boogie Wipes and to download a coupon.

2. Don’t forget the Mist

Boogie Mist is a sterile saline mist made for the smallest stuffy noses. Its unique scented cap makes kids want to use it, and the sterile saline busts through tough mucus.

Click here to read more about the Mist and to download a coupon.

3. Sleep!

This is easier said than done, but try to sneak in some extra sleep for your kids whenever you can. Try to head to bed a little earlier than normal or let them sleep a little later in the morning. Even 10 extra minutes a night can help in the fight against coughs and colds.

4. Wash those Hands

Washing hands is your number one defense against germs – and Kandoo Foaming Hand Soap makes kids want to wash their hands. The foaming bubbles along with the great scents make handwashing fun!

Click here to read more and to download a coupon.

5. Drink lots of fluids

Drink, drink, drink! Try to encourage your kids to drink one extra glass of water a day during cough and cold season to help stay healthy.

Enter to Win a Cough & Cold Comfort Giveaway Basket

Complete the form below to enter to win a cough and cold comfort giveaway basket. One lucky winner will receive a Crane humidifier, a Boogie Wipes and Kandoo care basket and a $50 Amazon gift card.

Giveaway ends at 11:59pm ET on Wednesday, February 18, 2015. One winner will be randomly chosen and notified via email.

Complete the form below to enter. Good luck!

Posted in giveaway | Tagged , | 2 Comments

currently [february]

Happy Wednesday! It’s nearly the weekend!

I’ve been lacking topics to write about lately. So I’m linking up with Jenna and Anne for a “Currently” post.

:: hearting ::

wpid-2015-01-26-03.24.50-1_wm.jpg.jpegThese two. That’s my current favorite picture. My goofballs.

:: reading ::

wpid-img_20150125_131452_wm.jpgI finished Station Eleven last week. Seriously guys, I loved this book. Go read it. Right now I’m reading A Year of Biblical Womanhood, Carry On Warrior, and Is Everyone Hanging Out Without Me?

:: pinning  ::

You guys probably won’t believe me, but I haven’t been on Pinterest in months. I went on once to find a recipe I pinned forever ago. But that’s it. It’s because I’m rarely on the laptop. I do everything from my phone and iPad. Never being on the laptop is also my excuse for the sporadic blogging.

:: eating ::

Absolutely nothing interesting. I have been craving sushi though.

:: anticipating ::

No vacations coming up. So just waiting for spring. I can’t wait for some warm sunshine on my skin. Also, shamrock shakes and Girl Scout cookies.

How about you? What are you up to??

Let’s be friends:
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Posted in currently | Tagged , , | 28 Comments

broken

I first noticed my brain being broken when I was a senior in high school. The official diagnosis was anxiety with mild depression. Not sure how the “mild” is measured. I didn’t see the therapist long enough to find out. She fell asleep during one of my sessions. Needless to say, I didn’t go back.

The anxiety part is most noticeable for me. I’ve had a few panic attacks. And I had a hard time managing it during my last pregnancy. But it comes and goes in waves. Like the bouts of depression, I can just ride them out. I don’t feel like myself, but I get through the days.

I tell you all of this because last week was the worst week I’ve ever had with my broken brain. And the only way I can process it right now is to write about it. Trying to live my word of the year: fear less.

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let’s break up this serious stuff with a picture of a cute kid.

Jeremy had to leave town very unexpectedly Monday night deal with a family emergency. Like, bought a one way ticket. So We didn’t know when he was coming back.

I’ve been a mom of 2 for almost 7 months now. I still struggle some days with being overwhelmed. Being alone with them all day is so easy some days and the hardest thing in the world others. I am still terrified to take them to the store by myself. The thought panics me. So being solely responsible for them for an unknown amount of days was not an easy thing to come to terms with. Again, the panic.

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my coping mechanism. eating all my feelings.

As the week went on, I got worse. I felt like I was drowning. I felt so hopeless. So much worse than ever before. I felt like a burden to those offering help. I felt my emotions out of control. I felt a way I never had before. I was scared.

I didn’t want to tell anyone. I didn’t want to let my husband know how bad it got because I didn’t want to make him feel guilty for leaving. I didn’t want to admit I wasn’t okay. I didn’t want to admit I wasn’t in control of my own brain. I didn’t want anyone to know I was a bad mom. A weak person. Depression hurts. Depression lies.

My girls sparked some of the feelings. But they were also the ones that made the week without my husband bearable. They are my joy. My little, frequent happy moments. Everything lovely. I am so glad that they won’t remember some of my moments this last week. I hope Avery doesn’t remember when I was short with her on Thursday. And the tears I couldn’t hold back during bedtime stories on Wednesday.

I am grateful for her unrelenting hugs. And the unsolicited outbursts of, “I love you Mommy!” For the silliness. For the smiles.

When I found out Jeremy’s ticket home was booked, I was able to focus on that. There were still frustrations and hard days. But I knew it would be better soon.

Now that he’s been home for a couple of days I’ve relaxed a little. The feelings are lingering. The self hate and self-doubt are stubbornly sticking around. But I know they will leave too.

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my coffee mug, offering words of encouragement.

I guess in, writing this, I want to feel less alone. I want to know everything will be better. I want to let my daughters that my brain was broken before they were around. That even though it might seem like they cause the problems, they are actually the cure. And if they someday feel they way I do, I am here for them.

I really need something to change this year. I can’t have anything like this happen again. Ever. Maybe I need to go back to a therapist. Maybe I need meds. Or meditation. Or something else. Or everything. I just need to find it.

Let’s be friends:
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Posted in feelings | Tagged , , | 13 Comments