Saturday, November 30, 2013

Thanksgiving 2013

This just may have been my most favorite Thanksgiving ever!  It might be because I feel like Conor & I nailed dinner, or it might be because Liam is at such a fun age right now.  Or, it might be because it was one of those elusive two nap days...  Nonetheless, Turkey Day 2013 was pretty spectacular for our little family!  We have lived all over the country in the past 4 years and haven't always been close enough to go see our families for Thanksgiving.   Instead, we have developed many of our own fun traditions.  While there are times that I miss the craziness that is big family holidays, our small celebration is just as special!

We started our morning off with a tasty breakfast of cinnamon rolls, maple blueberry sausage, fresh fruit, & mimosas (and boring yogurt for little L)!  I am not one of those people who doesn't eat all day in anticipation of a big dinner, that's crazy!  I really wanted to make my mom's homemade cinnamon rolls, but I knew that I just wouldn't have time to be whipping up some baked goods from scratch along with all the other cooking we'd be doing; and all while keeping a toddler happy.  So as to not over-extend myself (and then be stressed and/or disappointed), I found a local bakery and just purchased some (gasp!), but they were delicious!

The rest of our morning was spent watching the parade (bee-oons!) and preparing our Thanksgiving feast!  It was only the three of us, but we still make sure to have all the necessary dishes that make up your typically T-Day meal.  This which keeps us both pretty busy in the kitchen.  Conor took care of the bird & the stuffing while I handled the mashed potatoes, salad, & pie; we are quite the team!
This year marked the 4th Annual Keenan Family Thanksgiving Day Walk!  It has become a tradition to get a little exercise in before all the eating & drinking ensues later in the day.  Liam loves going for walks!  Once we say "walk" he runs right for his stroller and wants in immediately; however, he will only stay in the stroller for about 10 minutes until he decides that he wants to push the stroller or run through all the leaves in random people's yards.  He was loving the sunny weather and fully appreciated every little stick, leaf, & small bird we came across.  His excitement for the little things makes us so happy.  Our little guy ended up walking literally over a mile and never slowed down once!

Since it was such a beautiful day out (I would have preferred snow!), we also spent some time throwing around the football in our backyard.  It's not Thanksgiving without a little "fu-bull!  Maybe by next year Liam will be working on his spiral... I'm pretty sure we have a little football stud in the making.  His mama is so proud!

Coat: Northface
Our feast itself was amazing, but even more incredible was the fact that Liam hung out in his high chair for at least an hour!  Normally I'm scarfing down my food since I know he'll want to be down running around not long after dinner begins, but tonight he decided to give his mama a break.  I was able to slowly enjoy my meal AND drink an entire glass of wine all in one sitting!  We offered Liam all of our delicious eats, but he opted for cottage cheese instead.  One day this kid will appreciate his mom & dad's cooking skills.

As incredible as dinner was, I was so excited to end our Thanksgiving with our Christmas Pajama opening ceremony!  This year, Conor stepped up his game and decided to surprise me with jammies, so I didn't have to pick out my own.  I love how he gets into the holidays & traditions as much as I do!  We all dressed in our new jams & watched Shrek the Halls before putting the little one to bed.
I cannot wait for all the Christmas fun that is in store for us over the next 4 weeks!  Hope you all had a fabulous Turkey Day of your own and are already knee deep in tinsel (who uses that stuff anymore?...) & Christmas lights!  

Friday, November 29, 2013

Five on Friday

It's finally the Christmas season, eek!!!  I absolutely cannot contain my excitement, fa la la la la la la!  Since I'm sure you are all quickly tossing back your coffee this morning before heading out for some Black Friday shopping and Christmas tree decorating, let's get right to it today. Apparently there is no official Five on Friday today, but I had already scheduled this post (look at me!).  So enjoy these five things I'm excited about regardless:

I have never been into Black Friday shopping (I know, crazy right?), but this year I am excited about some online sales!  First up is Little Hip Squeaks!  She is having 25% off everything (use code GOBBLE) and there are door busters at 7am eastern time.  I have been eyeing her stuff since I found out I was pregnant (2 years ago)!  I might be making some purchases for my own little girl someday (SOMEDAY, I am not currently pregnant) or finding some cute things for my nieces.  This means I'll be waking up at 5am, but I think I can handle it!

The other Black Friday deal I'm excited about is at Freshly Picked!  I love that these are handmade locally in Utah (I guess I have just a teensy amount of Utah pride...teensy tiny).  I have been wanting a pair of moccasins for Liam forever!  I always held off on them because of the price tag, but since they are 25% off (coupon code not available at time of post) I am taking the plunge.  I haven't decided on a color yet, but I'm leaning towards a least for our 1st pair!

Now that Thanksgiving (which I'll recap soon) is behind us, it's time to put up the family Christmas tree!  As per tradition, The Keenan Family will be heading out to a local Christmas tree farm today to cut down our own.  This is such a fun way to pick out that perfect tree; the taller the better in my book!  I'm pretty sure our new house can accommodate a 10-12 foot tree this year...  I can't wait to see our selection on top of the car, and then in the house of course!  It's not going in the yard Russ...

Usually I am dropping off our Christmas cards at the post office today...  I like sending them off early, and I start checking our mailbox compulsively looking for cards to arrive from our friends & family.  I love Christmas cards!  Anyways, I am way behind schedule this year.  I've been waiting for it to snow to take a picture, and I'm still waiting!!!  I live in Utah, this is crazy!  I have our attire picked out, I can picture the scene in my head, now where is the damn snow?!  I may hold out through the weekend, but then we will have to take a picture regardless, because I need to get them ordered and then mailed out ASAP!  I know I could use a picture we already have, but I like to take one right before the holiday so it reflects exactly how Liam looks right now.  He is changing so quickly it seems silly to use a picture from a month or two ago.  I have been eyeing all the options on Tiny Prints and even have a 25% code, so I am just itching to get these done!  I'm lovin' the simplicity of this card, but I really can't choose 'til we have the picture...

After our Christmas tree goes up, I will be decking the halls like crazy today!  One new thing I'm excited about is this free Christmas print!  I'm going to put it in a simple black frame and place it on my coffee bar!  It's going to look perfect!  I'm really into all these fun prints for the holidays, so much so that I put the two that Jessica shared last year up in Liam's playroom!

Now go toss back some eggnog 
(preferably from a moose cup) and get to decorating!

Tuesday, November 26, 2013

New Look!

I'm so excited that my blog has officially been designed by the talented Jana at Jana Tolman Design!  I thought it was time to step up my game in this little blogging world and look a bit more professional!  Jana completely understood the style I was going for and brought all of my vague ideas together!  It's still a little under construction on my part, but hopefully I will have all the tabs up and running soon!

I knew that I wanted to keep a family photo as the main focus for this blog (because I love pictures) and I gave Jana this color scheme for inspiration as well!  I absolutely love how it turned out, and I hope you all do too!  If you are considering having you blog designed or redesigned I highly recommend Jana!

Thanks for the new look Jana, it is perfect!

Monday, November 25, 2013

Thanksgiving Prep (Pie Included)

It's Monday and the countdown to Thanksgiving is on!  Since I have a toddler on my hands this year, I am making sure to plan ahead so that I'm not frazzled come Thursday morning.  Also, I tend to over-extend myself, so planning things out helps me figure out what all I can reasonably accomplish!  I usually do all my grocery shopping on Thanksgiving Eve (or "Thanksgiving Prep Day" to me), because I enjoy the hustle & bustle in the stores that day.  However, this year I'm going to get everything I need early so I can spend that day in the kitchen instead.  I know that it will take me at least three times as long to get things done since I will have Liam "helping" me!

Thanksgiving Prep Day To-Do List:
pick up pastries for breakfast
brine the bird
make pumpkin chiffon pie
cube bread & leave out overnight (for stuffing)

Since I'm sure many of you are planning your menus at this time as well, I wanted to share one of my favorite recipes: Pumpkin Chiffon Pie!  It is much lighter than your traditional pumpkin pie, which is perfect for right after you stuff yourself with turkey.  The pumpkin chiffon pie is made with a graham cracker crust which is really the absolute best crust.... as far as crusts are concerned.  Crust.  Crust.  Crust.  I think I can say it a few more times!  I like to make this the night before, so that it is done & I can focus on the main event: the bird!  Enjoy this recipe; I'm sure everyone at your table with love it!  And let me know if you try it out!

Pumpkin Chiffon Pie

Pie Crust:
1 ½ cup of graham cracker crumbs (about 1 package)
4-6 tbsp butter, then melt
¼ cup sugar
¼ tsp cinnamon

Combine all ingredients and press into pie pan
Bake at 350 degrees for 10-15 minutes until light brown and firm

Pie Ingredients:
1 envelope gelatin
½ cup brown sugar
½ tsp salt
½ tsp cinnamon
½ tsp allspice
¼ tsp ginger
¼ tsp nutmeg
¾ cup milk
2 slightly beaten egg yolks
1 cup pumpkin
2 egg whites
¼ cup sugar

combine first 7 ingredients in sauce pan
stir in milk, egg yolks, and pumpkin
cook and stir over medium heat until mix boils and gelatin dissolves
remove from heat
chill to partially set
beat egg whites, gradually
 add sugar, beat to stiff peaks
fold into pumpkin mixture
pour into pie crust
chill until firm

Sunday, November 24, 2013

16 Months Old

Favorite Foods:   String cheese is really the only new addition to Liam's usual favorites.  He's slowly starting to increase the quantity of what he eats, but breastmilk is still his main source of nutrition.  He has recently discovered the sample ladies at Costco, and he will usually give those foods a try.  I seriously have no idea how he decides what he will and won't eat.

Breastfeeding:  He is starting to go much longer stretches during the day without nursing (especially if I don't offer it), and has every so slightly slowed down his nighttime nursing too.  I don't think he is anywhere near weaning himself, but it's nice to have him a little less reliant on it.  Conor put him to bed one night without him nursing, which was amazing!  And to be honest, I had no idea what to think about it...  I'm not ready for him to wean yet either.  So we will continue on!  :-)

New Words:  This little boy has such a huge vocabulary (that he actually uses on a regular basis)!  I'm not sure I can remember all of his new words, but some of our favorites are: turtle, beaver, lights, nose, eyes, baby, cheese (when smiling for the camera), booksnow, Nana, & Pops!  He's also understanding so much of what we say, so now Conor & I have to spell out some words when we're trying to make plans for the day and don't want to excite Liam to much (particularly bath & walk)!

Sleep:  He is just barely holding onto the 2nd nap; usually only a couple days a week can I squeak a second one out of him.  He has started sleeping some longer stretches (3 hours instead of 2...don't get too excited for me) and has even started the night in his crib a few times.  Co-sleeping is still working well for our family, and we'll keep it up until he is successfully sleeping for much longer stretches.  Long enough to make the effort of getting him down in his crib worth it!

Favorite Interests:  Books.  I hope this will always remain his number one interest!  I can already imagine the evenings that I will spend reading him Charlotte's Web & James and the Giant Peach aloud when he is much older.  He is starting to handle regular pages rather well (we've only had 1 big tear so far) and he is discovering new things in many of his books that he has read over & over.  Slides.  Liam can now climb up the stairs and go down the slide all by himself at the park (although he would still rather prefer I go with him)!  Animals.  He loves them in his books, in real life, the stuffed variety, and even the wooden ones from his Noah's Ark.  He learns new animals each day and has many of their sounds down.  Sometimes he mixes them up, or he gives an animal some random sound even if it doesn't have one.  His absolute favorite animal right now is the turtle, and he says it slowly and clearly with the cutest voice ever!  Kisses.  He has been giving these out left & right lately.  Sometimes just because, sometimes when he's scared, sometimes when he doesn't want to do something.  It's his way of saying, "everything is going to be okay."  Naked time.  Conor lets him run a muck all over the upstairs after bath time.   This crazy side to his personality really shines when he's in his birthday suit, and I just can't get enough of those soft baby butt cheeks!

His personality just continues to develop, and I enjoy each new day that I get to know him more.  He knows what he wants and is slightly stubborn like his mama.  He is extremely affectionate, which just warms my heart.  I will mourn the day that he decides he is too old to kiss him mama (or hopefully this day will never come)!  I am enjoying our little family of three more than ever right now.  Things are so great, we might really start to talk about adding another to the mix...

If you want a daily dose of Liam's cuteness, follow me on Instagram!

Saturday, November 23, 2013

Our Spokane Getaway

Since we are not traveling home for Thanksgiving, Liam & I decided to make a quick trip to Spokane to see my family beforehand.  Liam is typically a great traveler, so I wasn't too worried about making the trip alone with a toddler.  Although, it has gotten increasingly difficult (read: exhausting) to fly with Liam as he gets older, but I still try to keep things as simple & easy as is possible with a rambunctious little boy!  You can read about my travel tips here.  This time I decided to bring an element of surprise that I was hoping would work in my favor... stickers!!!

When I told Conor that I had bought a book of stickers for Liam to play with during our flight, he was a little nervous.  I think his exact words were "I thought we made a joint parenting decision to never introduce stickers to our kid(s)!"  We don't want to have stickers all over our house & car for the next 20 years!  But since Liam loves getting a sticker at the grocery store & library, I figured this would be the perfect thing to keep him busy during our flight!

Tuesday morning I arrived at the airport with plenty of time for a Jamba Juice treat, diaper change, & some airplane watching.  Liam has recently become obsessed with cars, trucks, trains, & airplanes; such a little man!  We boarded our flight, got comfy in our seats (with a whole row to ourselves), and anxiously awaited takeoff...  We were parked at the gate forever, so I decided to bust out our in-flight entertainment.  I typically like to wait until we are airborne, but Liam didn't have that kind of patience this morning (possibly due to the fact that he did not get a nap in before our flight).  We read our lift-flap book ump-teen times, finished off all the snacks that I brought, and then dove right into some sticker fun!  Amongst all these activities, the captain comes on to tell us that there is a maintenance issue, but it should only be a 20 minute delay...  Cue minor freakout on my part!  Then a half hour later we get the news that we will be changing planes.  Are you absolutely kidding me?!  I just exhausted all my activities & food and we had to get off that plane, board another one, and then we still had the whole flight ahead of us!

To say the least, Liam was miserable & exhausted for our entire flight, but he refused to nurse or sleep.  Nursing always calms my little boy, so I find myself a bit at a loss when we refuses it.  Somehow we made it through our flight, but not without a fair amount or whining or crying.  By far our worst flight performance yet!  However, it was all worth it because our time in Spokane was amazing as always.  I love being home and having so much family time!  Our quick visit looked a little something like this:

A visit to see Pops at work.
Dinner at Great Grandpa's house.
Mama gets pedicure (a couple hours of me time) 
while Liam plays with Nana & Great Grandpa.
Grocery shopping & cooking a big flank steak dinner.
Dinner with Mama's Godfather.
Playdate with Liam's Godmother, Teeny (and her little bun in the oven).
Lunch at Brooklyn Deli with Nana.
Quick trip to Tonicx to see Uncle Ryan (unfortunately no afternoon cocktails).
Gordy's take-out.
Coffee & pastries at Rockwood Bakery.

As you can see, there was plenty of eating & drinking during our time in Spokane.  Liam also played with his Nana & Pops nonstop.  He definitely recognized them this visit and wasn't shy at all!  He gave Nana a huge smile as soon as we saw her at baggage claim, and he ran into her arms every time she came home from working out in the mornings.  I love how excited Liam is to spend time with them.  If only we lived closer.  I will move back home....someday...hopefully someday soon...-ish...  A girl can dream, right?

Our flight back (Liam's 16th flight!) went much better!  In fact, he was practically perfect which made me feel like that amazing mom who just rocked traveling with a toddler!  It was a full flight and he stayed put in my lap the whole time.  We read books & played with stickers and then got so excited about the beverage cart!  Water & pretzels are a big deal to my little 16 month old!  He nibbles off little bites and then takes them in & out of the bag for the rest of the flight.  He smiled and flirted with the other passengers, and shouted out a few "wows" & "whoas" as our flight landed.  The gentlemen sitting next to me asked if he travels often because he was so well behaved.  Why yes sir, we do travel often!  After this great experience, I'm not too worried about our next flight when we travel to Spokane for Christmas a little earlier than Conor.  Less than 4 weeks and counting!

Thursday, November 21, 2013

Toddler Snack: Easy Hummus

Today I am over at Brica's blog sharing my favorite snack recipe, easy hummus! This is one of Liam's favorite snacks and it's so easy to make!  Not to mention healthy!  I would just love love love it if you all left a comment over there so I can be one of the cool kids.  :-)  Check out my post here!

Monday, November 18, 2013

A Letter to the Editor

Many people are surprised to hear that Conor is the editor behind my little blog!  Yes, my husband proofreads almost all my posts (the ones he doesn't are probably the ones with errors) and sometimes adds his wit along the way.  I love that he supports my hobby and takes time to help me improve as a writer.  I don't usually read my posts after his edits, so hopefully he isn't sneaking in any quips that I should know about!

With it being the season of "thanks", I wanted to take a moment to say how thankful I am for Conor!  He has taken on the role of Dadda so easily, and it looks good on him!  Recently, he has taken over most of the bath time duties, so that I may have some time to myself to wind down from my day.  He & Liam have developed their own routine and seem to truly enjoy their guy time.  I love listening to Liam's laughs coming from upstairs when they are together.

Tonight I popped upstairs to take a peak at the two of them...  Liam was running around completely naked except for a hat, giggling wildly.  Conor gets the best belly laughs from him!  Conor was also sporting one of little L's hats, since lately Liam is all about playing "dress up" with his hat collection (while naked of course).  I could watch the two of them play together all night.  My heart is so full!

Thank you for all that you do Conor!
Liam & I love you so so much!

Sunday, November 17, 2013

Mama & Mini Style: Winter Plaid

Holy Smokes!  Conor just put Liam to bed (in his crib)... completely on his own!  Liam didn't even nurse beforehand!  While this makes me a little bit sad, it's nice to know that I might be able to miss bedtime at some point in the future.  My baby is growing up, eek!  Onto the regularly scheduled post:

01.  02.  03.  04.  05.  06.

I have always loved plaid (maybe it's due to my uniform wearing, private school days), but this season I am particularly obsessed!  Liam & I have added all of the above to our wardrobes, with the exception of the pajama pants.  Conor is surprising me with my Christmas PJs this year; I can't wait to see what he picks!

I'm planning on wearing the plaid dress for our Christmas card photo paired with charcoal leggings & my black hunter boots!  I have been patiently waiting for it to snow so we can snag a picture outside. I'm starting to get a little stressed about it, since I like to mail out the cards the day after Thankgiving....  

Let it Snow, Let it Snow, Let it Snow...

Friday, November 15, 2013

Five on Friday

Another weekend is here!  I plan to finish cleaning out our garden (I still have tomato plants & flowers that are blooming, crazy) and possibly do a little shopping.  I've been making good progress on my Christmas shopping thus far; I just love some of the gift ideas I have come up with this year!  Anyways, it's another Friday so here is my Five.  Thanks to all the girls for hosting, especially Christina whose is just the most adorable pregnant lady!  Don't know why I haven't been following her blog all along!


My friend Betsy recently told me about FotoFly Santa, and I am obsessed with the idea!  Instead of the traditional sitting on Santa's lap (and terrified child) pictures, you dress up as Santa so your kids are comfortable & happy.  The pictures won't include your face, so you don't have to worry about your lack of white beard (or bowl full of jelly)!  I really can't wait to do this with Liam!!!  Although he did awesome with Santa last year, he's been going through a bit of separation anxiety lately!  I don't think he could handle a trip to see Santa right now, and I absolutely do not want him to ever be afraid of our favorite man in red!  So if you are local, I highly recommend checking this place out!

Since I have Christmas on the mind now, here are the two sets of holiday jammies that I bought for Liam from GAP & Hanna Anderson (which are on sale big time right now).  I might not be able to resist purchasing more, but two sets seems like a good start.  He won't be sporting these 'til Thanksgiving night though, because that is when Elf on the Shelf will bring them!  Now, I need to pick out some jams for Mama (and Conor)!

I finally purchased a new planner for 2014 and I am obsessed with it!  Thanks to the recommendation from my friend Jenn as well as Tamara, I bought an Erin Condren planner.  Although it is pricey (as far as planners are concerned), it is well worth the price for all the fun tabs & stickers.  It's the little things about organization that are exciting!  If you are going to purchase one of these amazing planners, use this link to get $10 off (and I will also get $10 off my next purchase, so I would love you for that)!

So I'm about to come out of the Bath & Body Works closet...  We all loved this place in grade school and had every scent imaginable of hand sanitizer!  Then you hit college and all of sudden you are too cool for this place.  But now, the store is all sorts of amazing again because of their holiday candles!  Well I'm about to tell you what else you should be slipping into your Bath & Body Works basket: pillow mist!  Or as I like to call it, sheet spray!  Who doesn't want to spray their linens with a relaxing scent each night to freshen them up?!  While I think it's amazing, my husband doesn't agree.  When he sees me with the bottle, he always shouts "Only 1 spray!  You always do too many sprays!"  Now if only I could get some Christmas tree scented pillow mist...

Something you might not know about me: I love Pitbull!  My husband think this is hilarious, but his music just makes me want to dance!  It is also my go-to music for all workouts; I run much faster & longer when he is blaring through my headphones!  And right now, I am listening to his song Timber on repeat, hopefully Liam likes it too!  It's going down, I'm yellin timber...

TGIF everyone!
xoxo, Laura

Wednesday, November 13, 2013

Weekend Recap

Weekend recap on a Wednesday... still perfectly acceptable!  This weekend was an exciting one since we had our friends The Geiers, from San Francisco, in town for a visit.  Conor & I feel incredibly lucky to have friends living all over the country!  While we don't get to see many of them as often as we like, it never feels like we are that far apart.  Curt is actually from my hometown of Spokane, but we never knew one another until college.  Such a small little world we live in.

Curt & Michelle made a trip to Napa the week before arriving in Utah, so they brought plenty of amazing wine.  I'm pretty sure most of their luggage was wine with a few clothes mixed in! But as they informed us, "The more wine you have, the less clothes you'll need." :-)   Friends that visit with a variety of wine to share are the best kind of friends!  They arrived late Friday night after Liam was already in bed, so we popped a cork right away and spent the evening catching up!  Normally, we would have hit up the bars and stayed out way too late only to wake up with hangovers the next day.  Well... having a baby definitely changes your game plan a bit but it was great to unwind from the day with them and hear about what's new in their lives.  Or, maybe we're just getting old!  Still, evenings spent at home (dressed in my cozies) are much more appealing to me lately... as is waking up feeling great the next day (albeit tired since you will never sleep like you did before having kids)!

Saturday morning, Liam & I slept in (I could get used to this sleeping until 9am thing!) while everyone else made a trip to Saturday's Waffles!  These waffles are the simply the best; I keep going with maple bacon & bananas foster and I'm not sick of them yet!  If I were planning a wedding right now, this waffle truck would definitely be making a late night appearance.  Maybe it will need to be at Liam's 2nd birthday party (never too early to start thinking about these things)!  And of course our waffle feast was not complete without mimosas & bloody mary's!

I stayed home with Liam while he took morning nap, and the others went to Epic Brewery for a little beer tasting (Conor's favorite local beer stop and he loves their little sandwich/food counter).  Beer is not my thing, so I didn't mind missing out on that little adventure.  I may have snuck in a little nap myself!  The weather was gorgeous, with temps in the 60s (crazy for November) so we spent the afternoon at the park!  Liam loves playgrounds and is now big enough to climb the stairs and go down a slide all by himself.  I cannot believe my baby can do all that!  My baby!

After the park, the boys threw around a football in our front yard while we waited to watch the Husky game that night.  It's so nice to have other Husky fans around; I absolutely have not jumped on the Utah bandwagon; and never will! Go Dawgs!  If you are a bit puzzled by the wardrobe choices in the picture below, note that we deemed this day: Plaidurday...  I'm not sure why exactly we are all wearing plaid, but I would blame it on the morning cocktails and the first two that kicked off the trend!  :-)

Sunday was another beautiful day, so we took a drive up Little Cottonwood Canyon to Snowbird resort!  The snow has been starting to accumulate in the mountains, but not enough for the lifts to be open yet.  We took the Tram all the way to top which is at 11,000 feet!  Liam loved the ride up and kept telling us about the "snow!"  I wish I would have thought to dress Liam so he could roll around in it, but I, of course, was not thinking that far ahead.  He will just have to wait until the next snowfall at our house, which will hopefully be soon!  I love seeing everything covered in white!

The weekend flew by much too quickly!  I always feel like the day company leaves is a rough day for Liam.  He loves having new people to read books with him and chase him around.  There is always so much excitement when we have visitors, and then *poof* they are gone all of sudden and it's back to just he & I during the day.  We filled the void by spending most of Monday with his best friend Max.  Liam has quite the social calendar these days! :-)

Thanks for the visit Curt & Michelle!
We loved having you and will have to get to San Francisco to see you again soon!

Monday, November 11, 2013

Late Twenties

Last Thursday, I officially turned 28 years old and entered what I consider to be "the late-20's"...  I don't get discouraged about turning a year older at this point in my life. At least not yet.  28 feels good!  If you asked me 10 years ago where I would want to be at this point in my life, I can honestly say that I would have given an answer that sounds a lot like my life is today!  I have the most loving husband & I am lucky to be a stay-at-home-mom to a joyful little boy with the blue eyes & blond hair I had always imagined!

To a certain extent, my birthday was mostly just like any other day as Liam's mom.  Of course my crazy little boy didn't quite understand that it was my birthday, so to him, it was just another fun Thursday!  I did however, have a package from my parents to open in the morning!  The big box contained four of those wonderful silver boxes from Nordstrom each with a fun little gift hand selected by my mom!  She knows my taste so well, and made some excellent choices for me!  I love the excitement of new clothes; so I, of course, threw on one of my new shirts right away before heading out the door for the day!

That morning Liam and I went at the library to scavenge for new books to bring home, all while sipping on an egg nog latte that Liam so generously bought for me from Starbucks. :-)  I try to keep my little man as busy as possible while we are there so that he is ready for a nap as soon as when we get home.  Unfortunately, I only got a short nap out of him before he was ready to start running around again.  I decided a trip to Nordstrom to exchange one birthday item and start some Christmas shopping would be a great plan.  It makes me so happy to purchase that very first gift of Christmas and was the perfect way to spend our afternoon.   Liam usually enjoys our shopping trips as long as I wear him and he has plenty to look at.  His shy act doesn't last long and I always find him flirting it up with the sales ladies!

Conor came home from work a bit early, so that he could take Liam on some critical errands while I showered in peace & quiet and got ready for our evening out (actually with Pandora blaring and a glass of wine)!  My boys came back with flowers, cards, & "bee-yoons!" (balloons) which brought a huge smile to my face.  Conor always lets Liam pick out a card as well and usually writes something hilarious/adorable inside.  This time Liam picked out a kitten "I love you" card and he meowed the entire time I read it:

Happy Birthday Mommy!
I picked this card out just
for you and all by myself!
I was really excited about the
kitty and so I thought you would love it!
LIAM :-)

Normally, Liam does well at restaurants; he loves all the people & the action!  So we decided to bring him along on my birthday dinner to our favorite sushi restaurant.  He even took a little snooze on the way there, so I thought the night would go perfectly.  However, we are learning that he is a bit more unpredictable as a toddler and our night didn't exactly go as planned.  He was a little angle just long enough for us to order drinks & food...  At that point he quickly became restless and cranky. With a new molar cutting through his gums that day, I just can't blame him.  Conor & I spent most of the meal trading off who was walking around with Liam while the other one stole a few bites.  It was not how I pictured our evening going, or what things have been like with him at restaurants in the past, but I completely accept & understand the challenges our little boy brings our way at times.  I was just happy to be celebrating with my little family, even though it wasn't one of our best nights.

This year, my birthday took on a new meaning for me.  I found myself spending much more time thinking about my parents & that day of my birth.  We should all really be thanking our moms for bringing us into this world on our birthdays!  Being a mom myself now, Liam's birthday is so important & special to me.  I love remembering all the details of his birth day and how my life changed completely.  So, thank you Mom for all that you did to welcome me into the world! And just for fun, here are a few pictures from November 7th, 1985:

I can't wait to see what surprises 28 has in store for me!

Friday, November 8, 2013

Five on Friday

Hello Friday & my birthday weekend/week/month!  My actual birthday was yesterday (I'm officially in my upper 20s at the age of 28) which I celebrated with my two favorite boys!  Tonight we have friends from San Francisco coming into town for a visit and I cannot wait for the celebrating to continue, cheers!  As usual, here is my Five on Friday.  Thanks to Darci and the girls for hosting!


I have a feeling everyone is going to be talking about the red cups... the holiday season is here!  And by holiday, I mean Thanksgiving and Christmas.  I like to give Thanksgiving it's fair time to shine; although, it is a bummer that it's so late this year.  Anyways, back to the red cups!  Just the sight of them excites me!  I may even have a red Starbucks cup Christmas Ornament, and it may or may not be one of my favorites!  My cup will be filled with eggnog lattes for the next 2 months!  They have only been out for a week, and I've already had three!  I guess my Kuerig is going to be neglected for awhile unless anyone has some awesome holiday k-cup suggestions?

While we're talking about egg nog, I have to mention that Talenti (the most amazing brand of gelato) has some festive flavors out:  Peppermint Bark & Old World Egg Nog!  They are both in my freezer as we speak and will not last long!  I have a serious love for egg nog.  I like it in my coffee (as stated above) and I like it straight with a little bit of fresh nutmeg grated on top.  I like it with booze, and I'm pretty sure I'm gonna love the gelato version of it!

The temperatures have really started dropping and we had our first snowfall here in Utah!  This means it's time to bust out the Smart Wool!  These socks keep my feet warm & toasty all winter long (sometimes I even sleep in them) and come in cute & funky designs.  Think stocking stuffers...  They look super adorable poking out the top of any boot, be it your Sorrels, Uggs, or Hunters!

My absolute favorite underwear/thong right now are Hanky Pankys!  They are all I wear.  They are one size fits all, and they fit perfectly!  I prefer the low rise, which worked well for me even when I was 9 months pregnant!  They have so many fun colors & prints, and they are sexy!  Again, this would be an amazing stocking stuffer!  You can just start calling me Mrs. Claus!

And to make this list as random as possible (all Five on Fridays really are), I have to talk about Rita's Ice!  The first time I tried some Rita's was when we moved to Delaware.  It is by far the best italian ice ever, and I quickly became addicted.  They are all over the East Coast, but I have never seen one anywhere else.  I have missed it like crazy since we moved 3 years ago!  Well, last week I noticed there is one in Utah super close to my house!!!  I took Conor on a surprise date there and we have already been back two more just one week!  Added bonus: it's open all year round unlike the ones back east!  My go-to flavors are mango, peach, & black raspberry.... it just doesn't get better than those (unless your adding custard, then it's better)!

Enjoy your weekend everyone!  
Mine will be spent stuffing my face with the waffle truck again!

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