Halloween-y Stuff

Today has been busy, and in the best way possible.  We’ve been blissfully busy this week which was filled with some vacation time, nesting time and more nesting time.  Hector has had some wonderful feedback on some life changing things so thank you GOD.  Some of our life will be back to normal sooner rather than later.  I can finally breathe (well sorta, I’m a bit crowded in the lungs area). It is amazing what faith does to you, how family and friends comfort and encourage and send positive vibes your way.  They make such a difference.

We love Halloween in this house.  I love to decorate, I love to carve pumpkins, toast pumpkin seeds and spend time with friends and family in fun costumes.  Although this year will be low key, or CRAZY because of a new baby. I’ve done a bit o’decorating and some thrifty Michaels shopping for our annual pumpkin carving/painting weekend… 60% off fallish sprigs gave me this fantastic inspiration:

Before:

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After:

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It now looks lovely on our front door:

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All for a whopping SIX dollars!  Those pretty colorful leaves are leftovers from a beautiful bouquet my best friend sent me, I’m so happy they get to happy greet people at my front door for the season.  Like I said, I’ve been nesting like crazy, I want just everything to be perfect everywhere and today – it was!  We had our nephew and fam over for some pumpkin decorating:

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I’d say they were happily entertained for a whole 10 minutes, then chased each other around the house for several hours.  Evan crashed in his high chair about 30 minutes after Jay and fam left and I’m pretty sure he is out for the night <3 – He had such a great time, it is awesome watching them together, Evan is 2, Jay is 6 and they play really well together makes me super happy that my little dudes will soon be able to entertain eachother and never be lonely <3

Here’s our damage for the day:

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and:

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I’m off to clean out another closet, I’m purging and detoxifying – I’m also getting braxton hicks like crazy (and heartburn!!! omg. never ever ever have I had anything like this before)!  Maybe baby will be here before 10/29 <3

 

 

Trials &Faith

It has been a long while since I have sat down and typed anything.  Life has been… trying.  They say when it rains, it pours, and I don’t think I’ve ever felt that to be more true – until lately – this year really, to be specific.  It has been a tough year for my family.  Filled with some serious trials, the ones where you can’t breathe, freak out – cry, are numb… etc. My grandmother passed away in July and I still cannot bring myself to talk about it, she was one of the most influential people in my life and I still feel a major void whenever she crosses my mind, which is quiet often.  When I thought things couldn’t be more difficult to handle, of course, circumstances come around and remind me – oh they definitely can get worse.  Even still, with everything going on – I’m lucky, because at least my family is healthy & my Evan couldn’t be more happy.  Not sure how I’d make it without this little kid, he will never know the strength he gives me:

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As you well know, I’m also very pregnant.  This pregnancy has been difficult for me.  I’ve never been good with body changes and this one, has really really given me a run for my mental money.  Although I love my little who seems to be very happy and healthy bouncing around in there – this pregnancy has really wiped me out.  I definitely feel more blue than with Evan and a lot of it has to do with the never ending exhaustion which I’m sure is a combination of the things going on in my life, long days, a two year old, a major injury around 17 weeks that really put me on the sidelines and just stretching not as good as the first time.  My thighs are wider, my hips are wider and I have stretch marks – I still don’t think I’ll ever be ok with.  I’m being honest here – these things really bother me and so I just want to write that pregnancy isn’t always rainbows and sunshine -but newborns, children, their innocence – I know when he is here in my arms, I will feel it was all worth it.  People can tell me I look great, that I don’t look almost 9.5 months pregnant but I FEEL all of it, every bit of 9.5 months, I feel.  My ribs hurt like no other, I get quiet a few contractions a day, my energy levels are non-existent and I’m getting anxious about meeting my little man.

With all the negative out of the way – I’m going to discuss some of the things that are making me feel all warm and fuzzy inside. My family has been so crazy amazing, it isn’t even funny.  My mom, so supportive – I can’t imagine getting through these things without her.  My friends, who are all going through their own major life changes – so thoughtful and supportive.  Not sure they will ever know how much their text messages, little check ins, FLOWERS, and positive vibes and prayers really uplift me – my life is rich because of the people that surround me… My relationships are what keep me going.  My faith in God.  God has never let us down, everyone goes through trials in life, if you have faith – you shouldn’t fear and that’s a prayer I send up each day – God I do not fear, you will provide.  FALL – the cool weather is refreshing, layers make me happy and my newest PUMPKIN will be arriving soon!!

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With everything that is going on, I’ve had to let a few things that are VERY IMPORTANT to me, go.  One specifically that hit me hard, though not too many people understood “it’s just xxx” – not a big deal… Well, to me it was, to me it meant a lot and to me it was something that I cried a lot over, because it was important to me.  Somehow, it is happening anyway, a semi-stranger, doing something for our family that means more to me than she will ever know.  I don’t even know how to share my gratitude, I just hope she knows how much it means to me.  Even with some clouds, our future is bright.

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Trials & faith.  It is the thing lives are made of.

 

Big Buys – Do they ever end?

Today is another day that reminds me how close fall is!  It also reminds me how close BABY is as he will be a fall baby.  As much as I have a love/hate relationship with Chicago – I truly overall love it.  I have a hate relationship with some of the politics that have put us in a pretty deep hole and this past winter REALLY tested my IL patience (it was brutal, truly).  However, the fact that I get to enjoy all four seasons, don’t have to worry about scary spiders (like a BLACK WIDOW, omg.), hurricanes, tornadoes, and forest fires plus – all the culture of Chicago – the neighborhoods, world class food and entertainment – THE LAKE, it really is a great place to be, albeit expensive haha.  

The changing of the seasons makes for some great pictures.  In the winder I can throw Evan in a snowsuit in a pile of snow, fall in a pile of leaves – the summer offers beaches, water parks and pools – the spring we get to explore the garden for sprouting flowers.  You get the idea.  Although I have little spare time, something I love to do is capture moments on camera.  Several years ago my hubby bought me a Nikon and I’ve been lucky enough to capture some really great moments. <3

 

 

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These have become REALLY difficult to catch though – because my autofocus has been broken for like a year.  With still objects, NBD – with a child?  BIG DEAL.  So I’m on the market for a new DLSR.  At some point I’d really like to take a class and pick it up as yet another hobby – it is something I really do enjoy. 

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So I’m on the market for a new camera. I’m sure I could just buy a lens or take the Nikon in for repairs but I really have my eye on a Canon.  Why do there have to be so many models?  I have no clue what I really need, or the major differences between them and with all the camera lingo that I barely understand it has been an intense journey to knowledge.  So any suggestions? :D

 

Where we are…

I’m sitting in my beautiful family room, HGTV providing background noise.  My “Be Peaceful” candle providing the most wonderful calming smell:

 

 

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Evan is snoozing peacefully, after a day of running around with his crazy runny nose – poor guy has a cold.

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Today was a beautiful day.  It started early after a rough night of sleep (I am SUCH a light sleeper).  Evan was just given a “big boy” bed and he kept slamming his head into the wall as he moved around on his new mattress. Each time he stayed asleep but I was alert as ever wondering it he would start crying at any moment. There is SO MUCH going on around us.  Besides prepping for a new baby, we have work stuff going on, friend stuff going on, family stuff going on and home stuff going on.  It is like so crazy.  But as I wait for my teapot to start whistling for my calm tea, I am just crazy grateful.  I’m grateful for my mom who listens to me complain, grateful for my friends who understand me without me needing to explain anything, grateful for the happy healthy baby boy bouncing in my belly, grateful for my husband who still loves me even when I’m a train heading to crazy town. 

Not everything is always sunshine and daisies and we definitely have our share of obstacles we are traversing but we are making it.  Together. 

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I’m feeling the need to nest like NO OTHER.  I want to clean, organize and make everything perfect for Evan, baby, Hector and I (& O).  I just need to find the energy to get things where I want them.  We are hands deep in deciding what other gear we need and I finally (with the help of momma above) picked out our new stroller.  When Evan was born I picked out two strollers Peg Perego’s P3 (I figured would be our light weight stroller and matched my carseat) and the BOB.  I cannot say enough about the BOB I ABSOLUTELY love the BOB, we still use it almost daily – Evan is great in strollers. We used the BOB with him within a few weeks of him being born because we picked up the carseat adapter.  The P3, left something to be desired.  It was expensive and I think I used it once.  It is now with my MIL who watches Evan and I don’t miss it. I just wasn’t feeling it.  It was a great lesson in try it before you buy it.  When we found out we were having another baby I immediately started day dreaming about an UppaBaby stroller it was the stroller I wish I would have bought after I tried and used the P3 and I was going to try to talk Hector into it ;-)  – well this time, I decided before spending 730 *gasp* dollars on a stroller, I wanted to TRY it first.  

OH MY GOODNESS am I GLAD I DID.  My mom, Evan and I went to Buy Buy Baby and tried out the UppaBaby Vista and the Britax B-Ready.  They have very similar features, allow for a kickboard, and rumble seat and have all the configurations I desired. After having Evan play many different roles (I should rent him out as a stroller tester, he was amazing) – my mom and I had a WITHOUT A DOUBT winner:

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the B-Ready was hands down my favorite of the two and for the price, I feel like it is a steal.  Literally the only things I liked better about the uppababy was the black frame and the prettier kickboard – clearly not enough to choose it over the B-Ready that handled better and felt more solid.  I will never again make a big purchase like this without testing ;-) and would recommend big-time to new momma’s who are as crazy about online shopping as I am – sometimes you just need to get to the store and move things around. We’ve already been using this lovely stroller I can’t say I like it more than the BOB, because I don’t but I’m excitied to have a stroller with the versitlity of this one.  We will be buying a couple add on-s first up is the careseat adapter.

One purchase down and only a few more to go.  

Things are piling up around here – and I’m getting anxious to do a load of baby laundry. I have several new boxes of my favorite baby swaddlers that I want to unwrap and get washed. My final box is on the way because I found it at a STEAL of a price ~32 BUCKS!! Hector may kill me because we still have a ton from Evan but I keep reminding him – baby needs baby’s own stuff too & Evan doesn’t like to share yet and will likely think all these new swaddlers are his.  I do almost own the entire bamboo collection hahaha but am IN LOVE with this organic pattern I bought, it is foxy ;-) and I’m eyeing the new circus collection IT’S FUN! But really babe, promise I’m done for now – don’t forget I use them as nursing covers, stroller and carseat covers, to wipe up spit up and layer a bunch together for time in the park… They really are my most used baby item and I’ve blogged about my love for them for two consecutive Thanksgivings!! (haha crazy just realized this) here and here.

I’m still looking for the perfect going home outfit and dresser, and rug and wall decor – so I still have a lot to do and <8 weeks until my due date!  Yikes!

So that is – where we are <3 Sicky is stirring tea is burning… O is wanting a walk so now I get to choose between the two strollers (I’ll ask evan!) and take the boys for a walk. Adios!  Happy Saturday!!

 

Train thoughts Ed2

Nothing like iPhone blog updates! Today I walked through Union Station and felt totally nostalgic about the different run expos that I’ve been to there. I’m pretty sure my first 5k packet pickup was there. It excited me about running again. Not sure how the brain picks up these things I think it’s a mixture of me thinking “geez this is perfect running weather” or the fact most of my races have been held in the city so it automatically gets my run brain workin. Anywho, I’m too afraid to run now because of my ankle but ran well into my third trimester with Evan. I have a love hate relationship with running. Some days I would force myself out of bed to run “because I had to” other days I looked forward to my runs for so many reasons: stress relief, me time, race prep. I’d be all in or need a break. I’m considering this my time to fall in love again.

This baby is due at a time that will likely put me outside of ideal running conditions outside, but that hasn’t stopped me from REALLY contemplating Long Grove’s turkey trot this Thanksgiving, they have a run/walk 5k and strollers are allowed so I’m sorta daydreaming about walking with my sis and a stroller while wearing baby 2. It will be too soon for a run goal, but I think a walk in the race atmosphere sounds totally blissful and It sounds like the perfect way to 1) remind myself I love the race atmosphere so much!! And 2) a great way to get in some mileage on a day I usually indulge a bit ❤️.

My my ride is coming to an end! Geez express train that was fast!

Thanks for reading my train thoughts! Happy Friday!

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Loving Weekends, per usual

I don’t know what makes life go faster.  A two year old, or a rapidly approaching newborn.  Any ideas?

I’m expanding like no other, or so it feels.  It felt good yesterday that my overly honest, no filter bro said, “you don’t even look pregnant, it is hard to believe the baby will be here soon.” But I may have a stretch mark forming which is totally weird because 1) never got them before, 2) I haven’t itched for a second and 3) it is like a light pink scratch looking thing.  I’m hoping it is paranoia but only time will tell and needless to say I’ve upped water intake and lathering up on my belly butter.   I’m trying not to stress about it, but I’ve accepted anything body related I stress about.

Here is a breakdown of yesterday:

Woke up, cuddled with my two year old.  Ran out of the house for a glucose test.  What a fun thing to do as a prego.  Make me drink this pretty gross orange drink first think in the am, and sit around for an hour.  Luckily I had good company, my momma & my number one little dude right now.  We stopped for brunch after:

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Afterwards, a quick run to Costco for some staples, Penguin came with:

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We came home and BOTH napped.  Clearly the blood drawing took a lot out of us ;-)

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After our nap, we took a quick walk to EP’s taste.  The weather was INCREDIBLE. The atmosphere was awesome, way better than previous years – we enjoyed live bands, a few bites of food I don’t normally touch and Evan had a BLAST on some of the rides.  My heart was so full watching him, it almost exploded.

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We also enjoyed an insanely beautiful sunset:

 

It was such a sweet night.  Uncle Joe even made an appearance that Evan loved:

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By the time we got home, we were all ready to crash and we did.  But not before some rough housing with our poor pup, Oso:

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Today has been just as fast paced.  Although we slept in!  Didn’t really roll out of bed until around 7:45 about an hour and 45 minutes later than usual.  Maybe third trimester sleepies?  Who knows. Hahaha.  I went shopping with one of my very best friends, Joanna.  Brought Evan home for a nap and am catching up on some other thoughts that I plan to write about in the not too far future like breastfeeding, prepping a big boy’s room and a nursery AGAIN *sigh* so much to do.

Well, I’m off for a laundry marathon.  Followed by cleaning, organizing, some yoga and cuddling with my two year old.  Oh!  Salmon for dinner and one of our family walks.  I’m telling you there has been nothing better lately.

Happy Sunday!

Keep it Fit – Friday

Well, here we are.  Third trimester. I’m feeling, you guessed it, tired! But otherwise I feel good.  My ankle is healing and I’m lifting heavy things again *flexes*

Hahahaha.  But!! I’m making an effort to go to the gym several days a week and get in our long family walks which I’m currently in crazy love with.  Seriously, the weather lately has been awesome.  It has been warm enough to close your eyes and get that nice glow but cool enough that it reminds me fall is on the way.  As much as I LOVE summer, I really do think fall is hands down, my favorite season.  I love the pumpkin spiced everything from food to candles, the warm rich colors, apple cider, apple and pumpkin picking… The crisp air, riding boots and skinny jeans, layering… I’m not wishing away summer but I am welcoming the change.bob

Happy Friday, everyone!  What is your fit goal for the day?  Do you use Friday’s as your rest day?  I’m going to hit the gym if only to sit on a bike for 20 mins followed by a quick leg set… Gotta keep it fit, I want to look like this again:

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Moms can be fit, before, during and after pregnancy.  FOr me fit life is happy life.

Namaste, friends.