Sunday, June 01, 2014

angel baby shower

My wonderful, wonderful friends (Lela, Erin, Stephanie, Kristi and Aarean) threw me a baby shower while we were in San Diego this weekend (more on that later). I have been so spoiled by my San Diego friends as new friends right after we moved when I was pregnant with William and then another adorable Peter Rabbit/book theme shower when I was pregnant with Fritz. Needless to say, I felt a little guilty when they offered to throw me another shower for baby girl but when they promised me that it would be small and easy-going, I felt a little better... and I was thrilled to have an excuse to have fun with my girls while we were in town. The theme of "angel baby" was so sweet and lovely.
with beautiful, kind, funny, creative, Aarean.
with Lela - I love when people say we look like sisters cause I want to be just like her!
We had the shower on the patio of one of my favorite San Diego restaurants, Tender Greens, which was the perfect location. Lela was in charge of these gorgeous flower arrangements (which happened to have two of my favorite types of flowers - hydrangeas and peonies), the table decor (gold dipped feathers, you guys!) and gold dusted vanilla bean French macarons. Stephanie made these sweet banners of gold angel wings and doilies that looked like clouds to hang on the umbrella overhead. Erin made the most scrumptious and beautiful chocolate cake (dreaming about it!) that she dusted with gold. Kristi brought white and gold balloons and Aarean made these adorable nail polish favors with angel wings attached. It was all so sweet and as the girls were setting up the table and making everything look pretty, I stood back and got a lump in my throat as I admired my strong, creative, smart, beautiful and generous friends who I love and miss so much. It's cheesy but true. It's good to have amazing friends in life!
Easily the best moment of the shower (besides the great food, beautiful surroundings and being with my friends) was when I opened Kristi's gift. I know that when I explain this, it won't sound that funny, but trust me when I say it was. I want to always remember how hard I laughed and how I thought I was going to go into labor from laughing so hard. I haven't laughed like that in weeks (probably since the last time I was with her!) and it felt soooooo good.
Anyway, Kristi has the funniest personality and she also does amazing up-dos for weddings. She had been working all morning and was trying to wrap up her gift quickly before driving 45 minutes to meet us for the shower. She was telling me all this as I was reaching inside the bag to see what was inside. She was apologizing for the "bad wrapping" and said, "So, I was at my house when I realized that I only had one piece of tissue paper left and then I saw some of this shredded paper from a wine and cheese box that Dan had won at work and I thought I could use it..." Anyway, as I reached inside, I burst into a fit of giggles when I saw that she had taken her lone piece of tissue paper and wrapped this orange shredded paper (that looked like shredded cheddar cheese, mind you) inside it and placed it on top of her gift. I felt so giggly and couldn't stop laughing at the mental image of her sitting at home, trying to figure out how to wrap up her gift with only these items. Plus, as I was laughing, there was Kristi, saying, "Don't laugh at me, you guys! I tried!" which only made us laugh harder. Oh, that girl...
sweet baby angel, Cora, and Stephanie
Kelly, me and Erin
Kelly, Lela, Stephanie, Kristi, Aarean, me, Erin and Ashley.
Needless to say, it was a wonderful day. After the party was cleaned up, we went down the street and got pedicures together and then I was able to play for a few more minutes at D Bar for the beginning of girls night before we had to hit the road. It was hard to leave, knowing they were just starting a fun night! Thanks to my wonderful friends for making me feel loved and special. You'll never know how blessed I feel to have you all in my life!

Wednesday, May 28, 2014

road trip

I'm often teased about how often we go to San Diego (I mean, "Sahn Dee-ah-go"), but when it's 105 here in Arizona already, can you blame us? David's dad is turning 70 this weekend so we'll be beaching it up and enjoying some good weather for the next few days (I'm hoping to sneak away for a pedicure too!). Plus my dearest girl friends are throwing me a baby shower and it makes me feel all weepy when I think about what good friends they are.
I've been bad at blogging lately and documenting these last few weeks of pregnancy (almost 36 weeks!) but I'm resolved to do better starting next week. I don't want to forget what it's been like to be pregnant with my sweet baby girl. I'll hopefully have lots of pictures of our beautiful, relaxing weekend in paradise next week!

Tuesday, May 27, 2014

memorial day

Our Memorial weekend was spent doing chores. It was nice to have David home to do all the things on my "to-do list". He painted the dresser for baby girl's nursery + the nightstand (I can't wait to share the pictures - they turned out great!) and also painted the boy's headboards. Then we ran about a million errands and relaxed. It was a good time, even if we didn't get to spend it at the beach in California like every other Arizona resident. :) Other notable things from the weekend:

- 8 people came up to me at church and asked if I was due "any day". I still have 34 days until my due date, so...

- I took William on a much needed date for tacos at Tia Rosa's. Five minutes after we sat down, I felt like I had already run out of questions to ask so we played "I Spy" and "Guess My Animal" for the rest of the meal. Ha! Then we saw a movie at the "dollar theater". Halfway through the movie, he came to sit on my lap and said, "Mom, I'm tired. Can we go home now?" The movie started at 7 and that's usually when he's getting ready for bed. It was nice to have him snuggle on my lap to remind me that he's still little.

- It was my brother-in-law's 50th birthday on Sunday so my sister had a little party to celebrate at her house. I helped her a little bit with the patriotic decor, which seems totally appropriate if you know him and the fact that he's a "Memorial Day baby". My other sister and her husband wrote a song to "roast" him and we were all laughing incredibly hard. They are so awesome at their personalized songs!

Thursday, May 22, 2014

I FEEL PRETTY

It seems like I am filling my Pinterest board with inspirational quotes these days. For some reason, I've been fighting the deep-seated "standards" of what it means to be beautiful. It's probably because I'm about to raise a daughter and the prospect of teaching her so many things that I haven't mastered myself, is really scary. I've seen so many wonderful and inspiring messages about what modesty really is (for my boys and girls) and this wonderful quote by Diana Vreeland really struck me too: "You don't owe prettiness to anyone. Not to your boyfriend/spouse/partner, not to your co-workers, especially not to random men on the street. You don't owe it to your mother, you don't owe it to your children, you don't owe it to civilization in general. Prettiness is not a rent you pay for occupying a space marked 'female.'"
via
I worry so much about finding a middle ground, for myself and for my daughter. I do believe that the real value in modesty lies in, as Paul says, "adorning themselves with good deeds," and why the valorous woman of Proverbs 31 is praised because "she clothes herself in strength and dignity" (via). I want my daughter to love her body for the amazing things that it can do. I want her to believe that she was created in the image of God and that her body and spirit make up her soul, which is really, really wonderful (definitely click on that link).

While I want my daughter to have confidence and love herself beyond the way she looks, at the same time, I don't think it's wrong to do what we can to highlight and celebrate our amazing bodies.

I wear make-up and it makes me feel good.
I get my hair highlighted and it brightens my face.
I like to wear clothes that flatter my body type and I feel better, kinder, more confident when I do.

So, where is the balance between loving ourselves for more than what we see in the mirror and also loving (and celebrating) these bodies we've been blessed with? Last night, I watched this TED talk and just cried as I realized how many women (including me) do this - we apologize for the way we look. Why? We don't owe prettiness to anyone. My value and worth and importance and honor does not lie in the way that I look or the way that anyone else looks.

I hope that my example will help teach my daughter to be the best version of herself and to know that she is a daughter of God with divine abilities. I hope that she will understand that the old song "kindness begins with me" applies to the kindness and grace she gives to herself as well as to others. I hope she will love to care for her body by treating it with respect and being fulfilled by what she's been given... cause I hope that for me too.

Tuesday, May 20, 2014

mamas

A couple of months ago, Arizona Foothills Magazine interviewed me as one of the moms for their Mother's Day feature in the May issue. I've never done anything like this before and I stressed for days about making sure I responded to the questions that reflected my personal views and goals as a mother. There were a few mistakes on my part (like, when I said that I have "nine older siblings" and apparently forgot to mention my one younger sibling - love you, Marcus!) and I think I would have responded to a couple of the questions differently now that I've had time to reflect, but it is what it is. You can read it here if you'd like to (mine is the last interview).