Dreams To Do

December 2013 archive

Turning the page on 2013

2013. Such a good year. SO much better than lame 2012 in my book. I was busier than ever and I pushed myself in new ways that I’m very proud of. My family and I had the most fun this past year together. It was just so good.

Some of my favorite photos and memories from this year include…

Family trip to Hawaii in March (Lando’s 1st plane ride!)…


Ziplining for the 1st time in Hawaii…


Tidying up our office/playroom…


Easter 2013…


My girl…

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Watching the poppies bloom in front of our neighbor’s house…


Lots of family walks to our neighborhood park…

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Celebrating 5 years of marriage to my love…


Family dinner picnics in our backyard…


Strawberry picking…


Leila turned FOUR…


Summer evenings, just me and the kiddos surviving…


An August trip to the Seattle zoo…


Family camping trip…


Lots of time spent out in nature (and with our ergo)…


Watching this boy move on from babyhood…


Walks in the fall…


Landon Drew turned TWO…


Fun at the pumpkin patch…


Finding out we’re expecting baby #3…


Christmas morning: the best time of the year…


Other things that rocked my world in 2013…

  • Switching my blog over to WordPress at the start of the year
  • Getting asked to write an article for the What To Expect website
  • Cutting back to 4 days/week at work (Mon-Thurs) – my life is so much more balanced now
  • Learning how to shoot in manual mode
  • Writing and being involved with Daily Mom – I seriously found my internet family
  • Celebrating one year of working out at the Bar Method (and over 100 classes)!
  • Turning 30!
  • Upgrading my camera to full frame
  • Finally feeling 100% comfortable with who I am and the fact that my future is a mystery

Tonight I will hunker in with my family and probably watch the ball drop at 9pm with New York City. Then, I’ll call it a night. This preggo just can’t stay up these days. Bring on the new year!

It just gets better and better.

Welp, another Christmas has come and gone. The few days after Christmas are some of the most depressing days of the year to me. It’s just sad to say goodbye to all of the festiveness and family time and anticipation, ya know? Sure, we have New Year’s and a fresh start to look forward to, but I’ve never been big on that. It’s just another thing that signifies how fast time is flying by – how fast my kiddos are growing up.

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Anyway, enough dumpiness! We had a most fantastic Christmas! And considering I slept through Christmas last year, I knew this one was going to be much better. In fact, every year since becoming a parent Christmas just seems to get better and better. There is nothing, NOTHING, like living vicariously through the excitement of your children on Christmas day. It is seriously better than being a kid yourself. So, so, so fulfilling.

Our Christmas was simple, yet perfect. I worked on Christmas Eve, but got off early to return to my family and a house full of deliciousness that my husband was cooking up. Both sets of grandparents came over for dinner that night along with Andy’s bro and his kids. Once the kiddos were all snug in their beds with visions of sugar plums dancing in their heads, the fun really began. I love playing Santa. I love stuffing the stockings and arranging the gifts perfectly. I love knowing that I’m creating a little bit of magic for my children to experience while they are young.

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On Christmas morning I actually awoke before the kids! I lounged in bed with the anticipation almost killing me, drifting back in and out of sleep until I heard little kicking sounds down the hall. I found Landon rolling around in his crib and after telling him, “Good morning! Guess what? It’s Christmas! Santa came!” he replied with a hearty, “HO! HO! HO!” 

Him and I got the joy of waking up sissy and daddy by jumping on them in bed. Then, we all went downstairs together to experience that first early morning Christmas joy. It really was magical and so much fun.

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We were done opening presents by 8am and in the car and off to my hometown by 9. The rest of our day was spent with my family and Andy’s family out in the country. Usually I dread making the hour drive home, but with frost on the trees and Christmas tunes blasting, it was almost my favorite part of the day.

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My only regret about Christmas is not getting a family photo of the four of us together. This will be the last Christmas with just us. Next year there will be another little human completing our clan. It’s so crazy to think about. But, it gives me so much to look forward to and be thankful for in the new year as well.

I hope you had a magical and perfect Christmas day, too!

Happiest Holidays!

Happy Christmas Eve’s Eve! Oh man, I am SO excited right now. I love me some Christmas anticipation. Each year it seriously gets better and better as my kiddos get older. And the thought that we will have another little one joining in on the fun next year is just about enough to get me through the last of this morning sickness!

Today I want to share with you our 2013 holiday card. I am SUPER stoked about it. I wish I could take all the credit for this, but I totally stole this idea from Crystalyn over at FlavorPink (if you want to see how we did it, check out her post). I found her post via The Paper Mama’s photo challenge last year and knew that I HAD TO try to do it for this year. I’m really happy with how it turned out. I love me some photoshop!

In other Christmas news, Santa photos went off without a hitch this year! I think this is the first year I didn’t have to deal with a crying kid! I was seriously so excited afterwards.

A photo I snapped with my phone. The real deal that we paid for is even cuter. 🙂

Anyhoooo, I hope you have a very, merry, merry, merry Christmas surrounded by your favorite people!

Christmas posts from productive times past…

Although it’s hard for me to imagine today, as I’m not quite feeling like myself, there was a time not too long ago when I busted out awesome DIY blog posts and creative content. In fact, if I actually focused more of my energy on DIY I could probably grow this little space into something bigger than my personal mommy blog. However, right now that’s the last thing on my mind.

Since I can barely muster up the energy to be productive at work and come home to take care of my family, I’m leaving you today with links to some of my past (and recent) Christmasy posts that you may enjoy.

Baby Footprint Ornament DIY

Footprint Ornament

For Landon’s first Christmas I got my craft on and created this footprint ornament from clay I bought at the craft store. If I could re-do it today I would take MUCH better photos and create a MUCH prettier pinterest-worthy image. Little did I know that this baby would be the most-viewed blog post on my site!

DIY Instagram Photo Cube Ornaments

Instagram Ornaments

I made these ornaments for my kiddos last year and re-made them again this year for a post on Daily Mom. These are Leila’s favorite ornaments on our tree! I’ll probably make a new one each year since they are so easy.

Fool Proof Santa Proof: Ways To Show That Santa Came


This is a post I recently put together over at Daily Mom. Basically, it consists of a few ways in which you can go above and beyond to show your kiddos that Santa was really at your house. Personally, I’m more for a simple Santa tradition (ok, let’s face it, I’m just lazy) but it was really fun for me to brainstorm creative ways to embrace the Santa Christmas spirit. 🙂 Check it out!

Festive Holiday Drinks


Here is a fun, festive post I contributed to – my recipe is for the candy cane martini! Funny because the hubby and I love playing around with drink mixing and I decided I wanted to make a candy cane martini for this post even though I can’t drink it. We tried different combos of booze and decided this one tasted the best (hubby did the taste testing, but I admit to a couple of tongue dips for final approval).

Daily Mom’s Ultimate Christmas Guide

Holiday Guide

I admit, I spend most of my free time these days hanging out with my Daily Mom ladies via internet-land. We spent a lot of time over the last couple of months working our butts off to put together tons of awesome gift guides and Christmasy posts for the Daily Mom readers. It was SO much fun and a little bit stressful. I’m just glad that the bulk of it was off my plate before the morning sickness struck me in full force! If you need a little more holiday inspiration or some seriously last-minute gift ideas, please check out THIS PAGE for a list of all of our holiday posts. Enjoy!

Merry & Bright

Our holiday season got started off to a rocky start right after Thanksgiving. Thanksgiving day in itself was fabulous. I got a miraculous day of relief from morning sickness, the food tasted great, and the family time spent together was the best. Not to mention that we announced our pregnancy to the family on Thanksgiving. Leila’s reaction was priceless. I said to her, “Guess what? I have a baby in my belly!” and her eyes lit up and she got the hugest, goofiest grin on her face. Then she said in a most excited voice, “That means we get to go to the hospital!!!” Yep, my girl is going to be a doctor when she grows up.

The day after Thanksgiving, Black Friday, is a day we usually spend hunkered in at home, busting out the first of the Christmas decorations and movies. This year our joyous seasonal celebration was stunted when Landon started vomiting. A sick toddler is just about the worst thing ever. And then of course, I started puking. Who knows if it was a bug or the baby, but I did NOT feel good. We spent the next 3 days at home in a fog of sickness and Christmas lights. But hey, at least we got the tree up and the Christmas spirit out!

The rest of December so far has been foggy. It’s hard to feel merry and bright when you want to curl up in a ball of sickness most of the day. However, there is no denying the buzz I am getting off my children’s excitement. Every day I get asked, “Is it Christmas Eve tomorrow?” Every morning both kiddos run, trying to beat each other, to the advent calendar to see what small treat awaits them. It is everything to me.

This past weekend it hit me that I only have two weekends left to get ready for Christmas and embrace the season. So, I busted out some Christmas cookies with my daughter (this recipe right here is the best one ever!) and finished up the Christmas shopping on a wonderful date with my husband. So today, I’m feeling like I’m in a much better place… bring it on ole Saint Nick!

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