Wednesday, May 27, 2015

Memorial Day Weekend

We took advantage of our long weekend to get our yard ready for Summer! I'm sitting here, Monday evening... exhausted!

Actually, our weekend was perfect! Matt was able to get off work relatively early, which is always a treat! We had a sitter come stay with Kess. This was the first time we left her with a sitter that wasn't family - she did phenomenal and so did the babysitter! Matt and I spent our date night at the temple. I've been dying to do that for years! It was so special to finally go back since our sealing. We made it to the last session and we the last few in the Celestial Room! It was amazing to be able to talk with Matt in such a sacred and quiet environment! Truly a spiritual night! *A post is in the works about our Sealing Day, I'll get that finalized soon!*

The rest of the weekend was spent doing all of our yard work, reworking some sprinklers in our system, pouring some concrete, planting our garden and all of our flowers. We even got around to staining our garden fence and planter boxes. Our shed/garden project took us forever last year - Matt was actually working on it the day I went into labor with Kess! It was nice to wrap it all up.

We spent about a zillion dollars at Home Depot buying all of our supplies and plants! I now have beautiful planter boxes and a strawberry plant, too! I'm pretty dang excited about that! (Once you're excited about your plants... you know you're getting old)

We only had sacrament meeting on Sunday due to our gym floor being refinished (It was kind of  totally awesome) We got Kess home in time for a good morning nap and got to relax most of the day!We drove out to Melba to visit my Grandpa Sho's grave. I hadn't been out there in forever and Matt had never been out there - which is kind of sad to me since we've been married for 5 years, but he's been slammed for those 5 years. It was very peaceful and really good to be out there.

I hope you all had a fantastic Memorial Day & enjoy your short work week!

Friday, May 15, 2015

Wedding Anniversary #5... and being forced to be trendy

We celebrated our 5 year anniversary yesterday! We keep it pretty simple for anniversaries, typically we do dinner and give cards - no gifts. This year was just the same and it was perfect! We asked Matt's mom to watch Kess and then we took off to downtown Boise. We were planning on going to Barbacoa and figured it wouldn't be too crowded with it being a Thursday night - but we forgot that the Luke Bryan concert was last night, so Barbacoa had an hour and a half wait.

We decided to head to the Brickyard. We had been there before, but the last time was years ago and it was a dinner for Matt's job. So this time we were super excited to have it be just us two. We walked in and it was quiet, relaxed and definitely more our scene! We were sat at the booth in the back, right next to the piano where someone was playing all the right classics. 
We decided to spare no expense for dinner, which we rarely do... and since we don't drink, it's easy to not go overboard with the price, but last night we made up for it in dessert! 
We both ordered steaks, which were phenomenal. They also have a salad chef who tosses your salad table side. I highly recommend the Green Goddess dressing. This place is perfect for having a very relaxed, romantic evening. They take their time with each course, so if you're in a hurry - don't go there ;) Matt and I had plenty of time to chat and reminisce over the last 5 years. And just stare lovingly into each others' eyes... ;) hahaha

After we finished our dessert, which was the most amazing dessert ever, we sat back and enjoyed the piano music for a little while longer. The pianist began to play a song that Matt used to play for me while we were dating. It was pretty fitting for the evening. 
Live piano music = heaven
They give you free muffins for breakfast, too!

Listening to the piano music, he could have sat there all night

We then drove back home, thanked Matt's mom for taking care of our little girl & changed into our comfy clothes, and watched the Scandal Season Finale! It was the perfect evening! 

Now... for a little laugh. You all know that this blog is about me sharing my life and helping me step out of comfort zone, to do, wear, try, say things I wouldn't typically do. Sometimes you choose to branch out - sometimes you're forced to. 

Kess has these little toys that suction to surfaces and then she can rattle and play with them. Well for the past few days we have been suctioning them to our foreheads. She thinks it's hilarious. We've even been sticking them to her little forehead. Yesterday I stuck one of those dang toys to my forehead and Kess was getting a kick out of it. She tried to pull it off and it didn't move, so I lifted one of the edges and it came right off. Didn't think anything of it. About 20 minutes later we walked back to her room to get her ready for her morning nap. We pass a mirror on the way to her room... I caught a glance of myself and panicked. I had a huge bruise/hickey on my forehead from that dang toy! All to make my baby laugh!
Knowing that I had a hot date planned with my hubby that night, I freaked out googled "How to get rid of a hickey"... OK I'll admit I knew a few of them ;) I used some doTERRA oils, a few of my new tips I had learned and while it lighted and started the clear away... it just wasn't enough. You all probably think I'm being dramatic & it wasn't that bad - the heaviest of makeup couldn't cover that thing! Thank goodness that I live near a target... I ran over & grabbed a fedora. 
I've loved the fedora trend for a long time, but felt like I wasn't cute, cool, or trendy enough to pull that look off. Well, now I didn't have a choice. I sure has heck couldn't go to dinner with a hickey on my fivehead! And you know what... I loved the hat and a lot of other people did, too! Even my hubby! ;)
So sometimes as much as we try, we still aren't great and climbing out of our comfort zone and if you're lucky - you'll be forced to, like me! ;) 

Monday, May 11, 2015

My First Mother's Day

This girl lights up my world! Couldn't live without her!

Happy (late) Mother's Day! It took me a little bit to realize that celebrating Mother's Day wasn't just to celebrate my mom, mother-in-law and grandmother's, but to celebrate me & that fact that I am a mother now. So crazy! 
My day was perfect. We have 9:00am church, so we woke up with Kess around 6:45-7:00am (early riser lately)... Matt gave me a big hug and said, "Happy Mother's Day! What do you want for breakfast?" He's good!
Matt made me french toast and asked if I would like to go take a shower, I told him yes and he said "Oh good!" That means he hasn't wrapped my present, yet ;) I took a long shower and Matt got Kess ready for church.
We keep presents pretty simple at our house... I send Matt an email with shopping links attached, he picks which one he wants to give me and has it shipped to the house. It works out well. I get something I want and Matt isn't shopping last minute. I got a cookbook I've been eyeing, so I was pretty excited about that! 
Poor Kess was ready for a nap right in the middle of sacrament meeting, so we decided to skip Sunday School, get her down for a nap and head back to church for Young Men's & Young Women's... She got a good solid nap in, so that was a Mother's Day present in itself! ;) 
Kess napped again later that afternoon and then we headed to see Matt's mom!
We gave our mom's initial necklaces for Christmas. They had both their initials and their hubbies, so for Mother's Day we bought separate charms with each other their kid's initials. They are so dang cute!
We went to my grandparent's for Mother's Day dinner and see my Momma!  We ended up hanging outside with my family and enjoying the good weather until it was time to get the little babies home for bed!

 Instagram @beautifuleffort 

Practicing her walking! 

It was a perfect day. I feel so incredibly blessed to be a mom. I always figured I would be a mom, but didn't grow up dreaming about being one. I knew I wanted to work for a while, then have babies, maybe work part-time or from home, and be home with my babies, but now that I have that life, I have never been more grateful for the opportunity to raise my beautiful daughter with Matt. We are truly blessed to be parenting together along side our Heavenly Father. Eternally grateful for my mom and mother-in-law! Thanks for keeping me sane in this roller coaster of motherhood... couldn't do this without you! 

Friday, May 1, 2015

Baby It's Bedtime Giveaway

My biggest fear about becoming a mother was knowing that I would be getting much less sleep. I love my sleep. I read lots of sleep books! I still read lots of sleep books. I wanted to understand Kess' sleep patterns as much as I could. I didn't want to make a mistake and be paying for it for years to come.
I figured out that babies need lots and lots of sleep, but it came in shorter spurts for a while. I just prayed I could function on those short stretches of sleep. I also figured out that a sleep routine is key for babies. So, early in Kess' life we started a nighttime routine - bath, new diaper, lotion/essential oils, baby massage, breastfeed and bed. After a few weeks of this, Kess got the idea. She would sleep her longest stretch right off the bat, which was great because I knew I could get a long stretch of sleep if I went to bed when she did. From about 10 weeks on, Kess slept 12 hours. 8pm-8am! It was pure bliss!
Then that 4 month sleep regression happened... around that time we were in the middle of traveling for Matt's job. Kess' routine, while still the same - was happening in different places... sometimes at home, sometimes in McCall... it took us a few months after settling back home to get back into her routine of great sleep. I'll be honest with you - it wasn't glamorous, but with some hard work, dedication and a few rough nights - her sleep pattern began to fall back into place. She is now sleeping about 11 hours at night. 8pm-7am.
Babies thrive on routine. I work my life around Kess' now. Naps are really important at our house, because the better Kess sleeps during the day, the better she sleeps at night. Sleep helps babies grow, develop and remain happy and healthy!
Baby It's Bedtime has created an easy to follow schedule through their new video. I will say that after reading many sleep books, I loved seeing a helpful video. While reading I was constantly questioning if I was going about everything correctly. The Baby It's Bedtime Video explains a simple day to day routine for you and your baby. Laura, the co-creator and president of Baby It's Bedtime narrates the video and does an excellent job of explaining her system! I love that she uses the term "flexible" when she talks about her schedules and routines! I always got so wrapped up in doing things identical to how I did them the night before for fear of ruining my child's sleep forever! Flexible routines are where it's at! I sometimes get a little too "type-A" with Kess' schedule and it's not necessary. Flexible routines make our live's much easier!

Baby It's Bedtime is hosting a GIVEAWAY for my readers and followers... They are giving away a FREE download of their video! I loved the video and you will too! Head on over to Instagram to enter! My handle is @beatifuleffort - or you can click the Instagram Icon at the top right of the screen! **Giveaway ends Friday May 8th**

***Giveaway closed - winner announced on Instagram***