the weekend that kept on giving

Nov 30, 2014

Monday! We meet again. How was your Thanksgiving? Is it a blogging faux pas to talk about a holiday meal many days after the holiday? Oh well, I am about to. Thanksgiving, normally celebrated on a Thursday was postponed until Friday for this family because Chris had an on-call shift at work. Which isn't too out of the norm seeing as how he usually isn't home for many holidays. But since our children don't know their days of the week yet, Friday sounded good. 
To be honest it worked out quite well, normally on Thanksgiving I am running around the kitchen like a mad woman with a fork or spoon in hand. But this year I did a lot of prep, and made most of the food on Thursday, but the best part was we got to shop the black friday sales from our kitchen table. We got almost ALL of our Christmas shopping done, just a couple things left to pick up for the kids and we are finished! This has n-e-v-e-r happened before in the history of our marriage. We are usually the people out on Christmas Eve frantically buying and staying up all night wrapping and putting things together. Not this year....boom!
Friday brought SNOW! Finally snow. Chris saw those flakes falling outside and ran down to his man cave to gather all his skis and start waxing them. This man has done a snow dance begging the snow gods to send some fluff for him to play on. They answered, but only mildly. There still isn't enough for him to spend the day in. Poor kid!
Saturday while the snow was still falling we decided to go ice skating. Pierce loves to skate, and would spent the whole day on the ice if we let him. Last year he only skated indoor, but after getting his first taste of wide open frozen lake real estate, he is a changed man. Ace thinks he likes skating, he will do it for about 10 minutes before he claims to hate everything about it and demand for skis, or boots. As long as we get one hockey player in this family we will be happy. I don't know how great of a soccer mom I would be, but a hockey mom....don't tempt me with a good time!
Sunday we decided to just pull out all the winter sports stops and get the kids on their skis. The ski season isn't officially open yet, but there is one nordic trail that was slightly groomed. The boys loved it, and I am all about an activity that exerts a ton of energy yet the kids think it is all fun. They worked those little leg muscles to the bone! Avalon and I did our best to keep up, but I mean, pregnant lady in the snow and 18 month old toddler legs. Slow going. 
As with any great parenting adventure, you must use a little bribery to get the job done. We told the boys that if they made it to the top of the hill they could go explore and sled back down to the car. False motivation. We did eventually make it to the top after all the "dis is taking fo-evea" "I wanna be done mama" "my degs feel like jewo". 
What goes up, must come down. And that we did. I love giving these experiences to my kids, and watching them get to do so many amazing things at such a young age. I am completely grateful for being able to live in a place where going out and doing this is the norm. Even though I have to give myself an internal pep talk before I embark on dressing and undressing these three squirmy humans. But watching them do all these activities that I never really did until I was much older is so exciting. 

But just like the weekend giveth, it taketh away! My house is destroyed. There are piles of dishes in my kitchen. We had pumpkin cheesecake for breakfast one too many mornings. And I am pretty sure we are down to one or two diapers in the house. So back to life...back to reality!

How was your weekend?

Holiday Gifts for the Guys

Nov 27, 2014

I have to admit that Chris is by far my favorite person to shop for. Being totally serious! Reason being, when he spends money on himself it is usually for all his skiing gear, or hiking stuff, you know all the outdoors things I know nothing about. He rarely takes a second to update his closet, even though the man is incredibly fashion forward. He has a well curated closet I must say. So when the opportunity presents itself for me to shop for him I love it! And if money just started falling from the sky, I would buy him this whole list, I could see him wearing and using all of this. 

What do you usually buy for the guy in your life? Do find it hard to shop for him? 

So many of these items are on sale for Black Friday so check out the great deals! 

winter white + a pregnancy update

Nov 25, 2014

blazer: banana republic// tee: sincerely jules// jeans: gap
shoes: zara (identical here)// clutch: zara (old)

I hope you didn't put your white jeans away from the summer! Pull those bad boys out! Winter whites is where it's at ladies. I love a crisp, clean look. And nothing pulls that off better than neutral tones. I am very much trying to get all my heel wearing in before my belly is just too big and I topple over, and before there is too much snow. Whichever decides to happen first! 

And on another note, I know I don't do too much pregnancy chit chat around here. But to be honest I just kind of go through the motions at this point. I have been pregnant the better part of the last four years, so kind of second nature. I know there are all those "pregnant blogger" formats out there, but I am not really good with stats, so I thought why not answer some recent questions. 

How are you feeling?
Great! Other than a little lower back pain here and there I feel pretty awesome. 

Did you have a feeling it was a girl?
Yes! Just based on that first trimester, and the fact that I seem to carry my boys and girls very differently. The boys I carried almost identically, down to the weight gain. I was all belly with them, really didn't see a difference anywhere else. But these girls! Totally different story. I carry them all in my hips and booty. So when my pants were taking a little more effort to get around my backside I thought ehh maybe girl. Then I caught a glimpse of my butt and said "oh holy girl!". And that was that. 

Maternity clothes?
I have not bought any maternity clothes just yet. Don't get your typing fingers in a tizzy, I am very much utilizing the hair tie around the pants button trick. So my regular clothing days are very numbered. Which brings me to ask you, what are some of your favorite maternity pieces? I am thinking of getting a few tanks and tees from Target, and maybe a pant or two from Asos. I really don't want a stock pile of maternity clothing seeing as how this is my last baby. So help me out folks!

What do the kids think?
I am loving this pregnancy with the boys being older. They are so much more aware of what is going on, even if they don't really know. They are constantly asking what the baby is doing, and if they can talk to her. Ace changed her name from Uncle to Light Switch in the car yesterday. Pierce is obsessed with kissing my belly. And Avalon just wants to sit on my legs and hit my bump like a drum, I know her sister appreciates it very much. 

Do I stick to a diet?
HA! Man I wish Chris was here to answer this question for me. But simply put, no. We have very much been overindulging, but I can blame Chris for that. You see he takes all the pregnancy hormones and really runs with them. He has the cravings, mood swings, fatigue. So he is really the one that says, oh I need _____ right now. This is totally out of character for him seeing as how he usually swears off all carbs and sugars. I do try and eat very healthy, but allow myself some simple pleasures. If you follow me on instagram you know.....

So there you have it, a little more of this pregnancy!

I really hope everyone has an amazing Thanksgiving filled with delicious food, drink a glass of wine for me, tons of belly laughs with family, and if you are feeling frisky (which I always am around family) drill your brother's new girlfriend on various topics. Not that I would ev-er do that to my brother. Have fun :)

taking stock

Nov 24, 2014

I think this is the perfect time for one of these posts before the craziness of this week really starts to sink in. I love Thanksgiving, don't get me wrong. But Chris is on-call for work so we have moved the almighty day of eating turkey to Friday, because the likelihood of him NOT going into work is just so slim. And the next couple days seem jam packed. Oh and I am sure I should squeeze grocery shopping in there somewhere. 

Making : doctors appointments and dentist appointments for all. 

Cooking : these pumpkin chocolate chip cookies for the third time in two weeks, they smell amazing. 

Drinking : pellegrino. all. day. errday.

Reading: this amazing post by Jessica. if you have a daughter I am sure you have thought about this topic.

Wanting: just a few more hours of daylight. by three I feel like i should be cooking dinner and getting a bath warmed for the kids. winter blues are creeping up on me. must take more vitamin d. 

Playing: lincoln logs. i feel like if we are home we are building something with logs or legos. avalon happens to enjoy it more than anyone. 

Listening: to lauryn hill. do you think she has some archived christmas songs? 

Sewing: not a thing. 

Wishing: my turkey would brine itself.  

Enjoying: our lazy mornings. i feel like every morning we get started later and later. the sun doesn't come up until after 9, and since ace is off school this week all bets are off. 

Liking: the fact that chris has some actual days off this week. family time and exploring are my my lifeline.

Wondering: what this little girl is doing inside my tummy right now, backflips? the macarena? 

Hoping: we get some snow soon so Chris and the boys can take their skis out! 

Marveling: at my growing belly. i don't care how many times you do this it is still amazing to be a spectator at what your body can do.

Needing: to think of a name for this baby. we still like nothing. 

Smelling: rosewater since I just washed my face. 

Wearing: warm wool socks. but i should probably start getting ready for the day.

Thinking: about food. but that is how my everyday is. i cannot wait for all those leftovers to find a temporary home in the garage fridge. 

Feeling: great. and so excited for the next few months. after christmas we will be in holiday recovery mode. and then baby mode. 

Bookmarking: baby stuff. i wouldn't mind a few more of these, or this cute sweater, and ordering more of these.

that is about it. what do you have going on? 

Holiday Gifts Ideas

Nov 23, 2014

14. tory burch backpack// 15. over the knee boots// 16. fold-over clutch// 17. vintage nike blazers

It's beginning to look a lot like Christmas....kind of. Okay, that is a complete lie. My house looks nothing like Christmas, and we still have NO snow on the ground. Pure craziness for this time of year in Alaska. But, Chris and I have made a "plan" this year. The plan is to get our Christmas shopping done before Christmas Eve. What an idea right? But we are serious. We are masters at procrastinating, and flawless execution. It is a gift really. This year will be different we have vowed. We will send out our Christmas cards so people actually receive them before Christmas, even though I have yet to take the picture. We will have all the kids presents here and put together before Santa starts to make his rounds. I am getting nervous just typing that out, the pressure!

In honor of this I put together a little Holiday inspired gift guide for the ladies. I am sure Chris will come here to double check before he makes a purchase. But any of these would make great gifts for someone on your shopping list, whether you are looking for a cute coffee mug as a stocking stuffer. Or perhaps a more splurge worthy item for yourself. What are you hoping makes it under the tree this year? 

how the food network saved my marriage

Nov 20, 2014

Okay, maybe that post title is a little dramatic. My marriage was never in a state of needing to be saved, but my cooking skills were. Actually they were non-existent for a long time. I come from a long line of amazing Italian cooks, but my mother never really taught me the ins and outs of it all. I just showed up at the table and ate. But then I was a 19 year old who ran off and got married on a whim. Never did I think I would have to cook for myself, let alone someone else. When Chris got home from deployment we were in our first apartment what do we do for dinner? Chris loves to tell stories of the first time I cooked him eggs, he didn't eat them. Or the fact that I couldn't make a decent turkey sandwich. Or the many many dinners ruined by over seasoning, or just burning all together. It was awful! We ate out for almost every meal for about three years!! 
thanksgiving 2012

Then I got pregnant with Ace and quit my job just before he was born. I was still a full time student, but my days were primarily spent at home. Alone. I found this thing called the Food Network. I would sit for hours upon hours watching shows, writing down recipes, making grocery lists. I would go to the store armed with the things I would need for an amazing meal. I was putting ingredients in my cart I had never heard of. I was learning words like, deglaze, skewer, score, whip, zest! I mean it was this whole new world. And anyone that knows me can tell you once I get going with something, there is no stopping me. I just immerse myself in that one thing. There were so many dinners that were not edible. Chris was a good sport about at least trying everything. Even if we ended up ordering a late night pizza. But I was determined to be able to have family dinners that I grew up with. I wanted my kids to crave mamas cooking. That is how I was. I loved going home from college to a huge bowl of pasta and sausage my mom spent all day cooking. Once I got a feel for it I had my mom send me my grandmothers recipes. Sunday sauce, cookies, breads, pastas. I was obsessed. 

Thanksgiving was always my fear though. My mom had always done Thanksgiving every year, every single part of it. All one million dishes that she put out. Wellll....except for that one year, you know that one mom, the one you had catered! But I was so intimidated by the thought of it all. When we moved to Alaska I was up, it was my turn. Chris put the added pressure on me by saying "do you really think you can make it taste as good as your moms?" and then he invited his Dad. To my FIRST attempt. His dad is pretty much a professional food critic, no really. I had sleepless nights. A thousand lists going. I even made a damn excel time chart to make sure everything was being cooked at the right time. I wanted it to be perfect. And it came out pretty good, actually really good. I was impressed, Chris and my father in law even admitted to having their doubts. And now it is that time of year again. My third year pulling out all the stops. Making more food than we really need. But it is all about the memories, and creating our own traditions. 

So thank you Food Network for teaching me how to cook. My family thanks you more. 

How does your story in the kitchen go? Who taught you to cook? Or do you cook? 

Happy Happy Birthday!

How the hell are you 28 Christopher!!!!! I feel like we blinked and it is ten years later. How did we ever go from out of control 18 year olds to married with children? Not sure how it all happened, but I am so happy it did. I hope you have an amazing birthday filled with staring at your new skis since there is no snow on the ground. But I have every ounce of confidence that when it snows you will put that birthday gift to good use and we will not see you until the snow melts. And that's okay, your sense of adventure is an amazing gift to this whole family. And you work so hard, why not play harder right? Except in the whole ice climbing and mountain summiting thing, because that all kind of scares me. I live vicariously through your adrenaline filled eyes! We love you more than any blog post could ever do justice, so HAPPY BIRTHDAY you little cutie! 

my pregnancy must haves

Nov 18, 2014

I think it is safe to say I am far enough into this pregnancy to know what I like, what I want, and what I must have! Some of these are tried and true products that have carried me through my other pregnancies. Some are new to this specific little incubation period. But, I love reading other women's favorites products, or methods that have worked for them along the way. So I thought I would share some of mine. 

one: zella leggings. These are my very very favorite brand for leggings. They are thick but breathable. They almost remind me more of a pixie pant in the way that they fit. And the color never seems to fade no matter how many times I wash them. The black is still a true black color. Chris actually bought me my first pair randomly when I was pregnant with Avalon, and now I am extremely loyal to them. Serious life saver while pregnant. 

two: the lotion trifecta. Barr Co- Udderly Smooth- Egyptian Magic. I know I have talked about two of these products before. And I know I am constantly talking about my obsession with soft skin, it's a problem really. But, it gets even more crazy while pregnant. I happen to section off my body with different lotions. Ha! I know...nuts. I stick to Egyptian Magic on my stomach mostly. Udderly Smooth for my boobs. Yes so weird, but it's the only lotion I use around that area while nursing, so I use it during pregnancy too. It really does help to soften everything up...which is great in the long run when my milk comes in. And finally Barr Co. on the rest of my body. I know, it's A LOT. But it is a system I have perfected over the past four years. 

three: pearl eye mask. I have horrible insomnia with the pregnancy. I am not a great sleeper anyway, but this is on a whole other level. So the bags under my eyes are no joke. I picked up this pearl mask and absolutely love it. It is only $10. I use it in the mornings to get rid of the puffiness and really wake me up for the day. 

four: body pillow. I know there are all these fancy shmancy pregnancy body pillows out there, but to be honest I never wanted to spend the money on such a huge oddly shaped pillow. I mean where and what do you do with that when not pregnant? I bought this body pillow from Target when I was pregnant with Ace and I still use it. It is machine washable, and absolutely wonderful. 

five: decaf coffee. I still like to trick myself into thinking I drink real coffee while pregnant, but I don't. I will have a cup of decaf almost everyday, and I do treat myself to one too many decaf white mochas, or decaf caramel brulees after preschool drop off. 

six: lavender sleep spray. Remember...insooomniaaaa! I know there are things that are safe during pregnancy to take to help in this area, but I try to stick to natural remedies as much as possible. Pregnant or non-pregnant. This sleep spray is great. I use it on my pillows, and it does seem to help me get to sleep faster initially and relax me at the end of the day. But after a few hours I just wake up and there is no getting back to sleep. The kids like it and so does Chris, so winner winner. 

seven: cake nursing bra. Obviously I am not nursing yet, but my boobs are gearing up. All the bras I bought from this post no longer fit, so I am back in most of my pre-offspring bras. But when around the house or sleeping I like to throw on one of these seamless bras. They are so incredibly comfortable, and they provide enough support so I feel a little more held in. I have used these through all my pregnancies and beyond. 

eight: rosewater. Rosewater is good for so many things, you can pretty much use it head to toe. I am still sensitive to strong smells, so perfume is out of the question. Instead I use rosewater as a hair rinse, and a rinse on my face after my cleanser. It provides just a hint of fragrance, but enough to make me feel good. I love it. 

nine: ginger berry sparkling water. In my first trimester the thought of drinking anything made me sick. Even sips of water were just torturing. But I knew that ginger was supposed to provide relief in that regard so I looked for ways to incorporate it into my daily eating....or lack of eating. I started making a huge pitcher of sparkling water every few days. It seemed to help with the nausea just a tad (which in that moment felt like a ton) but it was also keeping me hydrated which was the overall bonus. I have been sipping on it ever since. It is so refreshing and gives that added fizz. Here is the recipe I use:

2 cups water
2 tablespoons minced fresh ginger
1 cup honey
1/2 lemon squeezed
1-2 cups frozen berries
Sparkling water 

Add water, ginger, and honey to a small saucepan and bring to a boil stir to combine. Then let cool and discard ginger pieces. Throw remaining ingredients into a pitcher, then stir in the ginger simple syrup. Voila! 

So let me have it, what are some of yours? If you did a post on them, leave it in the comments, I would love to read it!!

sneaker freak

Nov 17, 2014

coat: forever 21// tee: target// leggings: nordstrom// shoes: nike blazers
beanie: zara// sunglasses: ray-ban

Welcome to what my mom uniform usually looks like. Sneakers! There was a time in my life...not too long ago, where I was a real sneaker head. I am talking would set an alarm to wake up and order online the second a shoe was released. Or drive to LA for a limited release on a sneaker. Or pay an insane amount of shipping to get a shoe from Japan. This was all pre-children, and when my parents were still footing the bill for my life, or when there were two working adults in this familia. But my sneaker collection is still strong, in all the boxes, in my closet. There are some I won't wear. There are some I wear all the time. Don't get me wrong, I love a good pair of heels to throw on, but sneakers will always be my first love. 

And this coat??? A welcomed departure from my faux fur. Forever 21 has so many great coats right now, my wish list is piled high with more coats than I could actually ever wear. But the prices are too good to look away. Here are some of the other ones I am loving:

we be all night

Nov 16, 2014

One of the many things on my Alaska bucket list, is to see the Northern Lights. And not just see the dim aftermath, but the real deal, dancing lights in the sky. But we live so close to the downtown lights that they are never really visible. But this weekend they were supposed to be insane! The local news really got me pumped up to load my offspring in the car well passed there bedtime to see these damn things. Chris of course was on board, he rarely says no to my craziness. So Saturday night rolled around. I was checking my "aurora borealis tracker" on my phone like I was tracking Santa. We packed the car full of blankets and activities for the kids, and even carved out time to stop at our favorite bakery to load up on a few delectable's to make the wait that much more bearable.
We pulled into our viewing spot and saw lots of other cars parked and thought "clearly we are in for a show....look at all these people!!". (rookie thinking). But we devoured our treats. Set the kids up a nice little play area on the floor of the minivan, have I told you how much I love that thing? No seriously, everyone should drive a minivan with toddlers. Anyway, the waiting began. It was about 9:15 pm at this point. I was moving around trying to find signal so I could jump on my fan crazed light tracker. I was sending Chris on random walks outside the car to see if he could see anything. Nothing! About 9:30 Avalon fell asleep. The boys were watching a movie. Still no lights. 10:30 Chris said, "okay I am waiting 15 more minutes and then let's head back, I am too old for this late night shit". 10:45 Chris and Ace fall asleep. 11:00 Pierce falls asleep. So there I sat.....still no lights. Then what do you know, I FALL SLEEP! I woke up at 11:30 frantically looking for lights in the sky, Nothing! I woke Chris up and said, this was stupid let's go home. Ha! And we did. 
Sunday we all slept in, thank goodness! Ace woke up and said "I never want to do that again. We didn't even see any Christmas lights". I know kid, your mom is nuts! We figured we should make it up to them and dazzle them with some other wonders of the world around us. Insert frozen lake!
The kids did plenty of ice skating last year, but mom was too afraid to let them on a lake. I have never stepped foot on a frozen lake before. My paranoia was out of control. Chris kept reassuring me that it was fine. (He grew up in Maine and learned how to play hockey on lakes like this). So I conquered my fear, and let my little ducklings spread their ever adventurous wings. 
They had so much fun! Running, falling, sliding all over the place. They begged to go back home and get their skates, but I only have energy for so much in one day. And since I can't skate in my state of gestation, we have to figure something out. But we promised we would come back with skates and hockey sticks in hand. 
And I mean this view! Unbeatable. Thank you weekend, I am still exhausted. And no thank you local weather man who assured me I would be in for a light show in the sky. I will be sticking to my 8 pm bedtime from now on. 

How was your weekend? 

a hope for my children

Nov 14, 2014

After we found out we were adding another little girl to this family I couldn't help but stay up that night thinking about how perfect it turned out. Not that a boy wouldn't be just as wonderful, but now we have the two boys close in age and the two girls close in age. Built in best friends for life is what I told Chris. And truly that is what I hope for all of them. That they grow up with this undeniable closeness that can only be brought about by siblings. I want them to rely on one another, protect each other, and love each other unconditionally. Obviously that is a lofty goal, I grew up in a blended family. My brother is 18 months older than me and my sister is five years younger. When my parents each got remarried they had more children, significantly younger than us. We loved growing up in the chaos of it all, a big family no matter what house you were at that day or weekend. But we are not close with each other. We go days, weeks, months without talking to each other on the phone. It has been years since some of us have seen each other. And I can't say this is a new thing, even growing up we just weren't close. We had our own interests, friends, and schedules. Nothing really went together. We went to different schools, and we all had developed our own opinions on the family dynamic. This isn't to say we didn't still fight at the dinner table. Or argue about who was riding in the front seat. Or my sister stealing my curling iron. All the normal sibling things happened, except the bond. Now we have all drifted, finding "family" in our friends. Developing a closeness with others and not each other. We are all still incredibly close with my mom, she is probably the only thing that keeps us all in the loop with one another. 

I can say for me I am in a different position than they are, married, kids kids and more kids, and I move every few years. It is hard to keep up with this circus. But if there is one thing I want my kids to get out of this military lifestyle is that sense that no matter where we are we are family. No matter how many schools you go to, your brothers and sisters will be there too. You will all be the "new kids" together. I hope this brings them even closer and instills that your loyalties lie with your family first. Call it the Italian in me, but family is held high in my mind. Chris is on the same wavelength. He more than anyone wants to make sure our children are there for one another. I think that is why we had them so close was so they could relate to one another more. Three of them will be in high school together (pray for me now). I know there will be blow out fights, they will differ in opinions on many things. They will say hurtful words to each other. But my hope and dream for them is to be able to rise above it all because they are brothers and sisters. There may even be periods where they don't talk. But my hope is that they will carry on our family traditions with their own families some day, but that they share in all those experiences together. 

I know this is all crazy mama thoughts going on here, but that's what I'm paid in diapers and wipes for right? To worry, hope, dream, and protect these amazing little people in my life. I want them to do the same for each other. This new little baby is already so loved and obsessed over my her older siblings that I can't wait for them to hold her. I can't wait to see these four little personalities around the dinner table. Or better yet some road trips....because that always brings out the angel in everyone!

in search of snow

Nov 11, 2014

Maybe I have lost my mind, or that is what my old self would say to my present self. This weekend we sat staring at each other on the couch like, "what should we do today?". I said why don't we go see if we can find some snow to play in? See normally this time of year there is snow in my backyard to play in. But not this year, we got our official first snow a few weeks ago, but haven't seen any fluffy white flakes since. It has been unseasonably warm here so most of the snow has melted. This is where I have lost my mind. Usually I would be rejoicing in this, but bored children drive you to do crazy thing. So we loaded up the car, which by the way next time I am taking a picture of what it takes to take three kids and two adults on a 90 minute drive to the snow. RIDICULOUS! I'm pretty sure I pack less for a three day vacation, and that would include probably six pairs of shoes. 
We drove out to Hatchers Pass, which is notorious for getting the first good amount of snow around the Anchorage area. We knew if there was any trace of snow left it would be there. Thank goodness we were right because it was touch and go there for a minute, and I will just let your imagination wonder if we had drove all that way and not fulfilled the promise of snow angels. 
Avalon is her mama's mini me when it comes to the cold and snow. She really has to give it a minute before she is ready to embrace it with open palms. She wanted to be held most of the hike. When she did get down she would hold her hands high above her head as far from the snow as she could get them. She would take a couple steps and start looking for a snow-less place to sit down. 
We decided to hike up to the old mine, which is a pretty decent hike with snow, three kids, and a 20 week belly. Let's just say I moved much slower than any of us could have anticipated. Chris kept saying, "it might be faster if I just carry you" ha! It may have been, since he was heard yelling "kids not too far we have to wait for mom". Ugh!
It took her about 45 minutes to figure out the snow was not going to hurt her, and after Pierce showed her she could even eat it, it was love at first bite. She probably ate her weight in snow. She was constantly shoveling it into her mouth, we made sure to scope out the fresh stuff for her (we aren't thaaaat horrible of parents). 
Super dad always to the rescue of his tired offspring. And then there is me....bringing up the rear. It's an important job and someone has to do it. You know watching for falling rocks, cars, or dogs. All very technical. But we made it up and back and I then begged for food, lots and lots of food! 

All this to say I am so excited for snow in my backyard, so I can sit my happy butt on a chair while the children frolic! 

what's it gunna be?

Nov 10, 2014

Oh hey girl! 
So the house will be pretty even now. Avalon and I will no longer be out numbered. 
Which will make taking a vote on dinner places a little more complicated. I mean who will be the deciding factor when there is a tie? What this does mean, is that we will accumulate more girl toys in this house, and for that Avalon is thrilled! 
We are so excited!! And with a little less than 20 weeks left until we meet this little girl, we better get crackin on this name game. Chris wants to go with Avalon Jr. is that a thing? Ace is pretty stuck on Uncle. So I mean the bar is high! The bar is high people!
The first official photo of us three girls.....well sort of. 

Nordstrom Clearance Picks

Nov 6, 2014

Nordstrom is probably my favorite place to fulfill all my shopping needs. I mean clothing, beauty, home stuff, kids, baby, Chris stuff, it is a gold mine for me. Not to mention the super fast FREE shipping to Alaska. So when they have a sale you can bet I am all over it. And this clearance sale is a gooood one! Great for Christmas shopping, stocking up on basics, or some pretty gifts for yourself. My insomnia has allowed me to look through the many, many pages of things and here is what I have my eye on!

(click the icon to get details on each item)

Have you checked out the sale yet? Have you started your Christmas shopping? I have not but I think this sale will be my launching pad. Not to mention all the great baby stuff on sale!!! The baby newness doesn't wear off when you get to number four, give me all the baby things :)

Happy Shopping!

testing stringtesting string

a lipstick trick!

Nov 5, 2014

Over the last couple years I have traded most of my lip glosses for lipstick. Never did I think that would happen, I mean I was a die hard lip gloss girl. But we grow and change I guess. So today I thought I would share a little trick I do to get my lipstick to stay longer, not to mention look a little more like the color from the tube. My avid beauty guru's will probably be saying, ya ya I have been doing this for years. But cut this stay at home mom a break. Here we go!
Step 1: Exfoliate and moisturize. This is super important every time you go to put lipstick on. Use a sugar scrub or exfoliator to get all the dead skin off. I like a homemade scrub, but was out of sugar. This Philosophy Kiss is the next best thing. Then moisturize. I usually do all this first, then do the rest of my makeup so my lip balm has time to soak in. 

Step 2: Conceal. Wipe the excess moisturizer off. Then this is pretty much the trick right here. Use your concealer to completely cover your lips. This gives you a blank slate to work with. Game changer for me, especially when it comes to nude lipstick. You want your color to really stand out so taking the natural pigment away from your lips is essential. 

Step 3: Liner. So I use a taupe eyeliner for all my liner needs. I know weird, but I am telling you this is a universal color. Unless you are filling in your lips with liner you do not need to match it to your lipstick completely, it should just be a guide. At least that is the way I see it. So line them completely and then use the other sponge end to buff it out, or use your finger. Just blend the liner into your lips so there is no harsh line. 

Step 4: Pack on the lipstick. Here I used my favorite nude lipstick by Dolce & Gabbana. I will link to all products below. 

Step 5: Go for color. I love a bold lip for any time of day, and this NARS lipstick is such a pretty Fall color. 

Simple no brainer right? I mean it may not have even needed a whole post, but I didn't start doing this right away and I feel like I wasn't getting the full effect of my lip stick. And who doesn't want some awkwardly posed photos on a Thursday? 

Products used:
Lip Scrub: Philosophy Kiss Me Tonight
Lip Balm: Dior Creme de Rose
Concealer: Estee Lauder Double Wear Concealer
Sponge: Beauty Blender 
Liner: CoverGirl Perfect Blend Eye Pencil in Mink
Nude Lipstick: Dolce & Gabbana Nude 120
Dark Lipstick: NARS Audacious Lipstick in Liv 


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