Saturday, January 21, 2012

First Snow

After a very warm winter so far, we totally got dumped on this week. I don't know who was more excited... Brian or Maybrie! I had good intentions to take Maybrie out to play in it, but it didn't really let up for the first two days, and then when it did stop, it was dark. That didn't stop us however. After putting Thomas to bed I bundled up Maybrie and myself and we headed out front to play while Brian shoveled. She definitely likes snow a lot more this year than last year... since last year she wouldn't even stand in it! :) Here she is getting decked out in snow gear, anxiously waiting for me to get ready so we could go out!
The first thing she wanted to do was build a snowman, but it was way too powdery. Maybrie didn't care, she enjoyed picking it up and dumping it in piles.
This is how we ended up making a snowman... me drawing it with my boot on the sidewalk!
Maybrie also enjoyed just tromping around in the deep snow!
Afterward we headed inside and enjoyed hot cocoa, with lots of whipped cream and marshmallows, together. Maybrie loved it!
The next day Maybrie couldn't wait for Thomas to take a nap so we could head back outside to play in the snow. This time she decided she wanted to make snow angels herself rather than watch mom and dad do it. She was hilarious!
Here is a little video to see Maybrie's snow angel skills in action! Enjoy!
video

Monday, January 16, 2012

Beating the January Blues

Sometimes I have a tendency to get a little depressed during January. The holidays are over, it is cold/gray outside, Brian goes back to work and I try to get back into a routine. This year, I am proud to say that I have been trying really hard to "beat the January blues" and that so far I have been very successful. Here are a few of the ways I have been making this month a happy one:

1. Thomas. Kissing on his chubby cheeks. He just turned 7 months old and is getting so much more personality. He is sitting up on his own and playing with toys. He reaches and grabs and puts everything in his mouth. He has the sweetest smile which always brings one to my face.

2. Potty trained Maybrie. FINALLY! Wahoo! She is often found in her Belle dress, which she earned by going on the potty and staying accident free. Maybrie loves anything princess, dancing, and coloring. She has quite the imagination and I get a kick out of listening to her make-believe play.

3. Craft projects. I like to do things that help make my home cute, clean, and functional. I made a simple Valentine garland by cutting out red and pink hearts with my Cricut machine and stitching them together on my sewing machine. I also made a bow/clip holder for Maybrie’s room by attaching ribbon to a painted wooden bird. The bows were getting lost and smashed in the hair drawer… now, problem solved! The best part about projects like these is that they are free (using items I already have) and fast.

4. Goal setting. I found that most of my goals for the New Year fell into daily/weekly/monthly categories. I wanted to post them in a place that I could check back on my progress often. So I found a chart online, printed it off, filled it out, put it on scrapbook paper, and laminated it. Now I can write on it, adding specifics for each week, check off the things I get done, and do it over and over again throughout the year. It helps me feel organized and productive.

5. Recycling. I decided to recycle this year to save money on a smaller garbage can and help the environment too. I found a great drop off place at a local church and have started sorting recycled items into boxes by category. I just cleared out a place in the storage room to keep them, which should work well since it is right off the kitchen and laundry room. I am amazed by how much of our garbage can be recycled! It is awesome.

6. Laughter. There is nothing I love more than hearing my children laugh. Thomas has the cutest laugh right now, and I finally got a decent clip on camera. Brian and Maybrie are especially good and getting Thomas going. I love it when I catch Maybrie playing with Thomas and making him laugh. It reminds me why I wanted more than one child… so they could be playmates. I love that they love each other.

video

Tuesday, January 10, 2012

Confession

I just received a lovely compliment from a dear friend about how good/thin I am looking. It was especially well-received because she is one of those women who is blessed with long and lean features and always looks gorgeous! In case anyone else sees me or recent pictures of me and thinks a kind thought about my current size... I think I need to be totally honest on how I got here.
You can refer back to a post I did back in Sept/Oct about my weight loss to catch part of the story. Here is my complete summary to answer her and anyone else's questions.

I had Thomas in June and then started exercising and trying to eat healthier when he was 6 weeks old, roughly the beginning of August. I really focused on it because, having never really exercised before having kids, it took me a long time to lose weight after Maybrie and I never really reached a size I was happy with. I gave myself points for the good exercise and eating habits going on, and some weeks managed to exercise almost everyday and abstain from sweets all together. I really got the habit to stick. It was great! But, one must also realize that aside from taking care of my kids, keeping my house in order, and exercising... I didn't do a whole lot.

Sometime near the end of September as we were packing and moving things began to take a turn for the worse. Postpartum depression was setting in, and within a few weeks I was really sick. I was feeling major anxiety and waking each morning with (to sum up grotesque symptoms) stomach flu. I still exercised a little until I reached the point of feeling too sick and week that I simply did not have the energy, nor did I think it healthy. I began dropping weight like crazy. The few nutrients I was able to force into my body seemed to go directly to Thomas through breastfeeding.

Thankfully I found some great doctors here and was able, through some rough trial and error, find medication that helped even me out, so to speak. I have been feeling MUCH better and like myself again since probably Thanksgiving. Brian kept telling me that my weight loss would be the silver lining when I came out of my hard fall into depression. He was right. I managed to fit into my box of "skinny" clothes that I wore when we first met and got married. Something I honestly wasn't sure would be possible again after having kids.

While I have lost a lot of weight and inches overall, the biggest area is in my legs. I am actually now shrinking out of my size 6 "skinny" jeans. On our anniversary just before Christmas we went to the Gap outlet and I was absolutely stunned to find the pants that now fit correctly are size 4! Brian kindly bought me my first pair of skinny jeans, in size 4, for Christmas. I am getting back into exercising and have managed to workout a few times a week for several weeks now. It feels good. I also find that my body likes me a lot more when I stay away from the sweets. I try to keep them out of the house, or at least in a cupboard out of sight. This has been harder with the holidays and birthdays, in which cases I can usually get by limiting myself to one serving a day, usually dessert after dinner.

So you ask how I lost all the weight? The truth is part of the credit goes to me and dedication to diet and exercise, and the other part goes to my undesirable depression. I would recommend the first method over the latter. And even though I am pleased with the way I look right now, I have mixed feelings when I get a compliment and am sometimes unsure how to respond. I think I will just graciously say thank you. I think that making it through my postpartum depression was as much work as exercise and eating healthier. So, I suppose I will accept any pats on the back I receive! And THANKS to those who have shared kind comments on the way I look outwardly right now, and does a lot to improve the way I look at myself inwardly too!

Monday, January 9, 2012

New Year's Resolutions

I figure if I post my goals for the year, maybe I will be more likely to achieve them. I am constantly making lists and goals on a daily/ weekly basis, so I am going to try and be realistic and set just a few that I may actually be able to accomplish this year.

  • Exercise 3 times a week
  • Read the entire Book of Mormon from start to finish
  • Try one new recipe a month
  • Have date night each week
  • Attend the temple once a month
  • 100% on visiting teaching each month

Saturday, January 7, 2012

Happy New Year!

Brian and I rang in the new year of 2012 by enjoying some quiet time alone together, listening to music and putting together a puzzle. It was a busy day with Elizabeth's wedding, and it was the perfect way to unwind and finish off a great day and year. A new year means time to start fresh on some goals. Now that the holidays are over and things have slowed down a bit at home, I am trying to busy myself with new projects and activities to break up the sometimes mundane routine of taking care of our house and two little ones. Basically, I have been making lots of lists... I'll let you know when I actually follow through and accomplish something! Wish you all the best in the new year and am looking forward to making it a great one for me and my family!

Maybrie's 3rd Brithday

I have a 3 year old! I can't believe it! Maybrie Rae turned 3 on Friday, January 6th. All week we have been all things princess as I went full force with what feels like the trillionth attempt at potty training Maybrie and in preparation for her Princess birthday party at the end of the week. Maybrie has had three accident-free days this week and as a reward for all of her hard work she got this Belle princess dress on her birthday. She was thrilled about the dress and is quite satisfied with her potty training progress (as am I)! Here she is on her special day, thoroughly enjoying dressing up as a princess. She spent most of the day twirling/dancing around the house!Maybrie also enjoyed helping me make sugar cookies for her "Crown" birthday cake. She spent most of her time pretending to make "pie" with the flour and little ball of dough I gave her to play with.

On Saturday we had some of her aunts, uncles, and cousins over for a Princess party! We ate yummy sub sandwiches for lunch. The girl cousins showed up in princess dresses and Maybrie helped me make wands and crowns to hand out to her cousins for the party as well. It was so fun to see the girls play, even Aidan and Tyler enjoyed the wands! Thanks to all who came and made Maybrie's birthday so fun and special!
All things princess- wands and tiaras

Here is my best attempt at a creative birthday cake. I found this crown cookie cake on Disney's family fun website. Maybrie loved it!

Birthday time!
(Tyler, Daphne, Lindsey, Lori, Thomas, Olivia, Maybrie, Naomi)

Excited birthday girl!

Maybrie got a Tangled Scrapbook Set from the Morales family. She LOVES to color, and has already had a ball with it!

We gave Maybrie the Little People castle (thanks to Emily who hand it down to us now that Emma has outgrown it). All of the kids were pretty excited to play with it!

Pretty princesses
(Naomi not pictured, and Lindsey's Cinderella dress already put away. I got busy playing hostess and didn't snag a picture till they were heading out the door!)

Happy birthday baby girl! We sure love you!

Elizabeth and Jon's Wedding

On New Year's Eve Brian's sister Elizabeth married Jonathan Robbins in the Columbia River temple. It was a beautiful sealing and we were grateful that my sister Jessica was able to watch the kids so that Brian and I could attend. It is always nice to attend weddings and remember the covenants we made ourselves. I wish I had a nice picture of Jon and Elizabeth at the temple or reception, but I forgot my camera at the first place and was too busy chasing kids at the second. They are a very happy couple and we wish them all the best!
Cutting the cake

The cousins' table- Maybrie, Emma, Lindsey, and Olivia had the cutest matching dresses (again, I wish I had a picture of them together)

Thomas was a happy boy and loved the attention from out-of-town relatives

Our family all dressed up

Me, Lisa, Lori, and Maybrie

Maybrie loved my bridesmaid bouquet and her pretty blue dress!
So cute!