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  • We just got back from a family trip/vacation to Williamsburg. We had a great time visiting Colonial Williamsburg, Jamestown, the outlet mall (okay, I might have been the only one who enjoyed this), and visiting our condo’s indoor pool. My husband had a whole week off of work, and it was really very nice to just enjoy being a family together, uninterrupted, for such a stretch of time. Colton’s favorite part of the trip? Going to the playground with Daddy. He’s bummed Daddy has to go back to work now because who will play machines at the playground with him?
  • I’ve been run/walking in preparation for a 5K on Thanksgiving. My church has a “Pew to 5K” group (like Couch to 5K, but we have a completely different training schedule). My run/walk group runs for two minutes, then walks one. With less than a month to go, I’m feeling good about where I am. I had a really hard time on our first, mile long run. Now, I’m running over two miles in our hilly neighborhood and not dying.
  • My run won’t be in an actual race since a Thanksgiving Day race doesn’t work for us, but I signed up to run on my own, so I will still be an “official” part of the 5K, but won’t be running in a race setting. I really want that race experience, so I think I’m going to sign up for another 5K a few weeks later.
  • I’m still pumping away, closing in on my 6 month goal. I have lots of thoughts/feelings surrounding making it this far, so I’ll probably post on that at some point.
  • I’ve read a good bit about people who have done the Whole30, and I’ve always thought, “no way I would ever do that.” But I’m having a super hard time loosing my baby weight this time around, and have been feeling like I just can’t break some bad food habits I fell into at the end of my pregnancy and in the early stages of lactation. Claire’s posts and experiences with it gave me the push I needed to really consider doing a Whole30 of my own, and forcing my husband into with me. I ordered the book, and while we were on vacation, my copy of “It Starts with Food”  came. I’m only a few chapters in, and wholly cow! I never thought a book on nutrition would be fascinating (and a little scary), but it is so good. And its really motivating me, encouraging me, and making me feel like I CAN change the way I eat and see tons of benefits to it. I’m not planning on doing my Whole30 until after Christmas, but I’m already feeling motivated to start planning, making trial meals, and start feeling better.
  • We went to my cousin’s wedding in the middle of October. It was a wonderful ceremony, and I really enjoyed getting to see my family. I was the only married cousin, and I think it will be fun to have another married cousin, and for my husband to have someone else who married into my crazy family to talk too. And, just last week, her little sister got engaged! I’m so excited for another family wedding!

 

  • I bought red skinny jeans in Williamsburg! I was on the fence about them, but couldn’t get them out of my mind, and realized I had lots more than I originally thought that would work with them, so I went back to get them. They feel like a purchase I would make back at my pre-baby size. I really struggled with not feeling great about myself after C was born, mostly because I wore ill-fitting clothes or baggy t-shirts, and I really wanted to try to avoid that feeling this time. This purchase, while it makes for only my third pair of pants that fits, makes me feel like I’m not just waiting around to be smaller. And while loosing the weight is a struggle for me right now, having something that makes me feel more normal, is really great.

Potty training sooo did not happen. The first three days were good and encouraging, but towards the end of day three things started to go downhill. And then they went downhill in a huge way. Basically, my child has an iron will and decided that he simply did not like using the potty, so he wasn’t going to. I won’t go into specifics, but it got so bad I decided he could go back to diapers. There have been a few consequences of not being a big boy and wearing diapers (namely, no taking a toy to bed) because his was a willful refusal to use the potty rather than an ability issue, but I think we’re all happier and less stressed for it.

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We just recently traded my trusty RAV for a new set of wheels, a mini-van. We’ve been looking for a Sienna (chosen for its good safety rating and my general love for my RAV) since December, and finally found one that had everything we needed, plus some bonus features, within our budget at a dealership less than five minutes from our house. Colton loves the van (and I better call it a van and not a car) and I am loving the automatic sliding doors and trunk.

A friend of mine had her baby yesterday! I ended up watching her daughter while she went to her regular appointment. When she got sent to Labor and Delivery, I took her daughter with me to school to pick up C and her brother (thankfully they go to the same school!). Since I didn’t have car seats for them all, we walked to the cupcake shop across from school to celebrate the new baby’s birthday. We got a candle and everything, and had only just sat down when they started singing Happy Birthday. They just could not contain their excitement and it was really one of the most precious things I’ve seen.

Stocking the freezer has been going well. I have most of the major things on my list crossed off, so all that’s left is to make meatballs, taco bread, and two more batches of baked oatmeal. Of course, should time allow, I’ve found a few more things I’d like to make, but even if I don’t get to the remaining things on my list, I feel good about the amount and variety of meals I have already frozen.

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It is finally warm here, and we enjoyed an after dinner walk as a family recently. Colton loved running everywhere, finding a stick, holding my hand, and generally getting sweaty. It was a short walk, and I was hot, pregnant and still sick, but I am so glad I sucked it up and we spent time outside as a family.

Despite being of an iron will, Colton is sometimes disgustingly adorable. Since my husband was out of town for a couple of days this week, I took him to Chick-fil-a for dinner one night. At one point he stood behind me in the booth, arms around my neck, head on my shoulder, “whisper-singing” so the whole restaurant could hear, “I love you very much! I love you very much! I love you very, very much! How I wonder what you are. I love you very much!” Can we just skip the tantrums and live in that moment for forever?

  • Way back in September, we took Colton to a Day Out with Thomas at the North Carolina Transportation Museum. We were prepared for him to loose his mind with excitement. Instead, he spent the whole morning looking like this: DSC01454When we left for lunch he started talking non-stop. “I see Thomas. I ride on Thomas with Nona and Popa. I see the trains. I want go back!”
  • I never blogged about Christmas, but that was an event C really did loose his mind over. He loved helping decorate our Christmas trees and every morning he would ask, “Mommy, you not turn on our Christmas lights?” He especially loved visiting my grandparents and putting Christmas decorations on various people. We then had to sing “Oh Mommy Tree” or “Oh Nona Tree,” depending on who he had decorated.
  • We have a mile-long list of things we’d like to do before this baby comes. Among them are: finally finish the upstairs desk and closet, paint the baby’s room, get a new sleeper sofa for the den, and clean, organize and get rid of things from all over the house. So far I feel like I’m making decent progress with purging and organizing. I managed to free up a lot of room in the kitchen, so much so that I should be able to keep a bottle drying rack in a cabinet by our sink, which will free up a lot of counter space.
  • I’ve decided we’re going to have a birthday party for C this year, despite the fact that I will probably have, at most, a one month old. He’s really into birthday parties these days, and thankfully we can have the party at our church, which has a bounce house and lots of toys for the kids (bikes, lawn mowers, balls), so that will take some pressure off. C really wants a Mater party, which should be easy enough to pull off with all the different Cars party options. His real wants are balloons, a bounce house, cake, and cones you can drink from. That all seems do-able, and if I only do that, he will be happy. Ideally I’d like to do some cute things, probably small things I can put together before hand, but I’m not sure what sort of expectations are realistic. Anyone thrown a birthday party with a newborn who can offer me some advice?
  • We’ve had a couple of snows lately, and C has been in heaven. Of course, he doesn’t look at all like he’s enjoying himself in any photos, but each time we’ve told him he can play in the snow of that we have more snow, he is beside himself with glee.
    DSC01985My personal favorite moment was when I got him up from his rest time to tell him we had more snow. He jumped out of bed and said, “Oh boy bulldoze! The new snow came, the new snow came! Yay! We can make ‘nother snowman!”
  • Sleeping until 6:20. Daylight savings threw Colton for a loop, and he’s been waking up at 5 am. Combine that with a day where he took a 45 minute nap, 6:20 feels like HEAVEN.
  • Target’s Shawl Collared sweatshirt. Soooo comfy, but still cute (and I can wear it multiple days without a wash). I want more.
  • Crazy 8’s kids’ clothes. I spent less than $50 last night for a pair of jeans and a t-shirt for Colton, plus jeans, 2 shirts, leggings and a skirt for my friend’s two kids. Jeans are $12.99 when you buy two or more, you can save 25% on your order right now, and shipping is only $5. Plus, I’ve found the clothes hold up super well, and you can’t beat $2.99 shirts.
  • This photo from our recent shoot with Caroline. I don’t think there’s one thing about this photo I don’t love.
  • Panera’s Fuji Apple Chicken Salad. It’s my all-time favorite salad, and Hubby picked one up for me today since we forgot to defrost our meat in time for dinner. But, I found two different recipes for making your own via Pinterest.
  • Pumpkin bread and apple cider in the evening with Hubby.

Dear Stomach Bug,

Please leave my family alone. Five days with a baby who’s in too much pain to eat, two days with a baby of a sick husband followed by a day with an out of commission mom are not fun. Since it’s been two years since I last saw you, could you please stay away for at least that long again? Thanks.

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Dear Dean, Kroger Bagger,

When I bring my own bags, all nicely folded and stored in one bag, please take out one bag at a time, as needed. Please do not dump all the bags out to use the one bag they were all in. If you do decide this is necessary, please put the bags you don’t use back inside another bag. Do not dump them all over my cart. Thanks!

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Dear Colton,

Please gain weight. But do you have to wake up screaming bloody murder at 1 am to do it? Your poor Dad has had to get up to feed you two nights in a row (thanks stomach bug!), and it’s getting a little old. Also, do not feed your puffs to the dog. Love you!

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Dear Romantic Comedies,

Most of you may be brainless, but there is nothing like you when it comes to cheering me up while I’m convalescing. The best part about you is if I happen to fall asleep, I can always follow the story line whenever I wake up. Thank you, RomComs, for always being there for me.

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Dear Ball Popper,

You scare my son. Why did I buy you thinking you’d be fun?

Apparently, Erin at Polka Dots and Pearls thinks I’m irresistibly sweet! Thanks Erin!

Generally, I appear to be bad at receiving blog awards, based on the one other time I received an award and pretty much ignored it. But, this time I’m at least going to answer the questions that come with said award! I can’t pass it on, as it gives me anxiety.

Apparently, I am to list five guilty pleasures, so here goes:

  1. Say Yes to the Dress – Love, love, love this! I have a friend getting married in July, and I’ve been watching for “research” so I can be of assistance in dress-finding. Even though she already has her dress.
  2. Shopping for baby clothes – no, my child does not need any more clothes for the foreseeable future (this includes, most likely, into next winter). Does this mean I can stop shopping? Um, no.
  3. Glee – I’ve just now gotten into the first season of Glee (thanks Netflix!). I’m a little embarrassed to admit how much I love it, mostly because I’m a little late jumping on this particular bandwagon.
  4. Computer games – I really like time management and building games. It’s not cool, it’s not “adult,” but I like it.
  5. Dessert – preferably of the chocolate variety. But I don’t usually feel guilt about it, just pure pleasure.

Do any of these surprise you? Are any your guilty pleasure too (I don’t want to be alone on the random computer game thing!)?

I’m a fan of Josh Groban, going on eight years now. He’s one of the only artist’s whose music I liked in college and still like now (especially when I need time to mellow out). Anywho, I “liked” him on Facebook about a month back, figuring that would be the best way to keep up with when he had an album out and whatnot. Over that month, I’ve enjoyed some of the off-the wall things that were posted. But yesterday, well, yesterday’s posting ensured I would be a fun for a very, very long time.

Does it get any better than that?

As part of his job (the “if I tell you, then I’ll have to kill you part), Hubby gets to spend most of his working hours in windowless, concrete room where he can’t have a cell phone or MP3 player, and where the radio only picks up 2 stations. So, he spends a lot of time listening to radio commercials.

After work one day, he was telling me about a commercial he heard repeatedly for Hoodie-Footie pajamas. These are, essentially baby pajamas with hoods for adults. (No wait! I just saw that they make them for the whole family! Everyone can wear matching footie pajamas!) He told me he had heard that they made a “sleek and sexy” version, and was interested in how one could make footie pajamas sexy. I said something to the tune of, “oh, well Colton’s pajamas look comfy. If I had footie pajamas then my feet would be warm at night!”

Apparently, the husband thought that meant I wanted a pair of Hoodie-Footie pajamas. And recruited Colton to help him pick out the perfect pair for me. He was seriously suprised when I told him, “no, I really don’t want a pair.”

Except these penguin ones look super cozy…

I kid, sort of. Yes, I would consider wearing these. No, I wouldn’t pay $100 for them. I would look completely, totally, and utterly ridiculous, but I would wear them and be warm. Do you think I’ve lost my marbles? Would you wear something like this? Would your husband ever seriously think this would be a great gift for you?

Just a 20-something girl living on the East Coast, trying to figure out life. I'm a wife and mom to two. I'm trying to rediscover my love for long walks, yoga and pilates. But not hiking. I still don't like hills. I was raised at the beach, but I don't like the beach. I like to look at it, but I don't like to swim in it, I'd prefer a pool, thanks. I'm just trying to become the best person I can be -- the woman God wants me to be. That's easier said than done!

E-mail Me!

Contact me at longbrakeliving@gmail.com - I'd love to hear from you!

Hubby is my all-time favorite guy. A perfect mix of serious, sarcastic, laid-back, handy and nerdy, he is the perfect complement to me. I love his strong work-ethic and the way he always loves and supports me through everything. Some of Hubby's favorite things include: hiking, Virginia Tech football, woodworking, and his family. When I married him in July 2007, I had no idea what an amazing journey we were headed on, and how I could come to love him so much more each day.

Our oldest, Colton, is three years old. He is equal parts sassy and hysterical. He loves all things train, car, bus, truck, and machine related. He has a penchant for made-up words and loves to be the clown of his pre-school class. Our younger son, Nathan, was born this May. He is pure joy and full of smiles! He is such a blessing and a perfect fit for our family.