16 weeks of being Grateful

grateful post

OK I admit I am way behind on this post so I will make it up by listing out 8 things I am grateful for in this pregnancy 2 for each week I have missed. So if you cannot remember what this is all about, I posted a few weeks back about how I needed to stop being negative about my pregnancy and start focusing on the things I am grateful for. So here we go.

1. I am grateful that I didn’t really have awful morning sickness like some people do.

2. I am grateful for another healthy baby boy

3. I am grateful for the fact that I can still be active

4. I am grateful I can still travel, and eat LOTS of seafood while traveling:)

5. I am grateful for a reason to eat ice cream all the time!

6. I am grateful for a toddler boy who kisses my tummy and frequently says, “Hello, I am your big brother” to his baby brother.

8 I am grateful to live in a day and age where at 5.5 months pregnant you can still get a new job and no one blinks an eye about it.

8. I am grateful I can raise my children in a country that I feel we take for granted everyday. We have so many freedoms and privileges that we forget to be thankful for.

Funny thing this morning, we forgot our anniversary!

A funny thing happened to us this morning as we scrambled around our home getting ready to head out the door. We were trying to get ready for work, get kiddo dressed, make breakfast, deal with meltdown #1 -3, deal with meltdown #4-6, and finally as we are heading out the door my husband checked his phone and stopped. “Oh My Gosh!” He exclaims. “Happy Anniversary!” Sad but true we were so wrapped up in our morning and what was happening with the continuous meltdowns over anything and everything a 2 year old can think of, that we forgot our wedding anniversary! And this is a milestone year on top of it all. 5 years ago we said our vows to one another. I cannot even believe it’s been 5 years.

I don’t even feel like it’s been that long but 5 years ago I remember it was sweltering hot, we were 45 mins late, and in the intense September sun among the wine grapes, family, and friends we took vows to each other. We definitely have our bumps and roadblocks, but we somehow have continued to work through each obstacle that presents itself. He is my best friend, and I could never see myself with any other person in this world. God has truly blessed me and our marriage.

Happy Anniversary to the funniest, silliest, hardest working, most loving husband. I love you so much!







20 weeks of being Grateful And the big Gender reveal

OK so first and Foremost I am sure you would rather hear what Baby #2 will be! We were so excited to find out that we are having another boy!! We have never cared what we have, as long as they are healthy babies, and we are being blessed with another boy! Little man was so awesome and excited to share the news on Social media over the weekend. Here are some shots from his pics.

Gender reveal1



With all this Happiness around our family, in the discovery of  baby boy #2, it got me thinking about other things, like my attitude with this pregnancy. The other day I was heading into my regular Barre class (Yes I still attend Barre regularly) and as I spoke to my instructors about how  am feeling I came to a realization that I really complain a lot about being pregnant. Immediately I felt terrible as this realization hit. I thought OMG I wonder if people think I regret even getting pregnant? I thought long and hard about this through my class that afternoon. I will admit I am not the best pregnant person. I enjoy having my baby physically in my arms rather then in my body. I don’t like having to let go and allow my body to lose all control on what it does and how it grows. I am not good pregnant as my husband says.

So back to this realization on negative thoughts and comments and how they must be interpreted. I decided right then and there that each week I would make myself write down at least two things I am grateful for related to being pregnant. So in celebration of finding out we are having a boy, here it goes Thanks to Christine Marie, 20 weeks of being Grateful.

1. I am grateful that I am healthy.

Despite being uncomfortable, I am healthy. I mean I am still active, I am not over weight, I can keep up with my toddler (for the most part) But I am healthy.

2. I am grateful for stretchy athletic apparel.

I get it this is a shallow item, but in all seriousness I am soooo happy for this one. outside of work I live in this type of clothing, and the fact that all my non maternity items still fit and comfortably is a huge plus in my book. This one also hit me as I went to Barre this week and realized I was still comfortable and able to fit in these clothes. Cheers for stretchy athletic wear!

Because it’s Friday

Because it’s Friday, I will share with you all some of the current items I am obsessing over this week.


Image source

As mentioned in yesterday’s post if you LOVE checklist, this site is awesome – Matchbookmag.com. And check out the Boutique section while there, super cute stuff

OMG! this week has been my favorite week of the year…Shark week! I have been glued every night this week as soon as little man is asleep. Just feeding my fear of JAWS since childhood, I Love it!

I am currently obsessed with finding another pair of amazing boots. I bought a really cute pair only to find them too small (always a bummer) so I am now currently obsessed with these Frye boots, that will be coming home with me very soon. If you have never owned a pair of Frye’s I highly suggest investing in a pair…AMAZING!

I have finally found a NA white wine that actually tastes like wine! But it’s NA! So for now while I am preggo this will fit the bill. I was also able to pick up a NA mojito so we shall see how that tastes over the weekend.

One of my nesting projects is to create a “big boy” room for little man! Thank God for Pinterest in helping me get inspired. Totally loving this room idea.

Have you heard of the Google cardboard app and viewer? if not, and you have a droid or better yet a Google phone, Get the viewer and check it out!

I am on day 5 of a 10 day oil pulling trial, I can’t wait to see what happens after 10 days and to share it all with you. So far I am loving it and feel that everyone should at least try this!

Hope that you all have a fabulous weekend!


Nesting already – But not how you think

I realize I am only about halfway through this pregnancy, and should not be encountering this part quite yet. I have already started getting fully immersed into the nesting mode. Organizing, cleaning, planning, checklists, and purging out the old stuff to make room for new. I am not sure why it’s so early this time around, but maybe it’s the looming fact that we will now have two children in our home, and the time to get hings done without interruption will quickly be upon us. Among the many many relevant projects we have on the list related to having another baby (which I plan to share) One of the main items I cannot get out of my mind is not related to having a baby AT ALL! My closet and the wardrobe that resides within it. I know your thinking, “this girl is nuts” I get it I am 19.5 weeks pregnant and starting to think about how can I clean out my closet and re-vamp my non-maternity wardrobe. WHAT IS WRONG WITH ME?! Part of this particular nesting item is stemming from the fact that due to my limited clothing options, I am currently dealing with, I am slowly realizing I have a lot of just…stuff. Stuff I don’t wear, stuff I wore once and never again, and stuff that is another variation of anther item I currently own. Why am I hoarding all this Stuff?

It got me thinking while I am preggo why not just slowly eliminate pieces so that once I am done having children I can just start from scratch. I mean I am in my 30’s now, and maybe it’s time to have a wardrobe that reflects that. It’s not about trends anymore, but about having those classic essentials, that maybe cost a bit more, but will last me so much longer and fit so much better. The more and more I start looking for inspiration in this “Classic closet” I am going to start creating The more I realize the essential pieces you invest in don’t just make one outfit, but like 5 or 6 different outfits! I feel like I just had a friend smack me in the forehead and say duh why didn’t you start this sooner. Don’t get me wrong I will always love fashion, trends, and fun pieces, but for me I want to invest in my fashion after this next child. I want my closet t be a clean and ready slate to begin this new process for when I am ready to start shopping for non maternity wear again.

Came across this little checklist on Pinterest, and thought this was a great way to start. Seriously follow that image source link if you love checklists as much as I do!


Image Source

So what is the game plan since I am still preggo you ask?

1. Well I am going to start by slowly eliminating the things I don’t need out of my wardrobe. I feel that being pregnant will help this process happen much faster and easier then if I wasn’t.

2. While pregnant I can start to research the exact items I plan to invest in so that I can properly save and budget for those items.

3. Some items I might start to purchase while I am pregnant (ex. Boots, shoes, Bags,accessories) Again sticking to the notion of Classic pieces.

4. I recently created this Pinterest board to help aid me in the time of “research” while completing the rest of this pregnancy.

So what do you think about the idea of creating a “classic closet” or a “grown up” closet? I would love to hear what you would do and what you would change or get rid of in your own venture to create a similar concept in your wardrobe.


Strong is Beautiful – Being a fit momma

“Strong is Beautiful” is a mantra one of my Barre instructors is constantly saying. Since one of the big struggles of pregnancy for me is letting go of the fact that body is going to change and get bigger. I am trying to live by this mantra each and everyday. I have always struggled with my weight and body, like many many women do. So letting go of that control has been a struggle, but a healthy struggle for me to encounter. Learning to let go of what is comfortable and allow nature to take it’s course is an amazing lesson for me personally. Taking that negative focus of weight gain during pregnancy and focusing on how can I be strong has allowed me to accept the changes I am going through much better then before. With that said. I am still running and attending Barre and Yoga classes on a regular basis. I have had to modify a few things here and there, but in all I am sticking to the things I normally love to do. The changes I have made is that now the focus is on being strong for not just me but for baby number 2 as well.

Pregnancy running

Running has been the one I have had to adjust the most. My pace and speed is now mins slower than what I am accustomed to, and the pressure of baby on my bladder has really allowed me to be creative in where to find “pit stops.” However, I still keep trucking along ;) Using a support belt has helped immensely. Not just with the bladder pressure, but my sciatic paint that comes with running as well. If your a pregnant momma on the run and plan to keep running I am highly recommending a support belt.



OMG I cannot even begin to tell you how amazing yoga and Barre have been and are while pregnant. Barre is my go to class of all time. I cannot rave on about Barre enough. I love, love, love this class and type of workout. Did you know I never had arm definition till I started barre? well I do. And while pregnant this class is helping me to maintain muscle, strength, and helping me to keep my hips and thighs in check. I wish I had done this class with my first. It is really one of the best workouts preggo or not.

Yoga is amazing as well pregnant or not. The fact that not only are you strengthening muscles, but stretching and allowing your body to realign and relax is a huge plus in my book. The only thing to be careful of is inversions and too much twisting while pregnant. Otherwise have at it. I love a good yoga class while Preggo and highly reccommend going throughout the whole pregnancy if you can.

*I don’t have any cool images while pregnant at Barre class, but here are a few from Yoga Rocks the Park a few weeks ago!  

Yoga downwarddog

Yoga meditation

Images from their FB page here photos taken by Courtney Perry and Yoga classes courtesy of Yoga Rocks the Garden MPLS Still time to find classes in your city here

Other Options

I know that some of you are thinking I don’t really run, and starting while pregnant is not highly recommended. And some might be thinking a yoga or barre studio membership is not in the budget. In those cases I would actually utilize a lot of Pinterest workouts. I personally use them when I am at home and just don’t have time to go to class, or the kiddo is with me at home. (Trust me pushing 30+lbs in the jogging stroller at almost 5 month preggo is not fun..at all) Here is my workouts board from Pinterest that has som great at home workouts, as well as my 2nd baby board that has a few amazing H.I.I.T and kettle bell preggo specific workouts to do at home.

So if your expecting and dealing with the same struggles as me, remember strong is beautiful, and your growing another human being in your body. Stay healthy, keep strong, and let go of the things you can’t control. Instead keep doing what you love for yourself and for your baby too!

* All opinions on Yoga Rocks the Park are of my own. There is no affiliation or monetary gain from this post. I really truly just LOVE what they are doing and that I could participate! 

Early Maternity – What to wear!!!

OK Let’s chat about maternity style. Not just maternity style in general but second time around maternity style. Things have been happening a lot faster then they did the first time. By 8 weeks this time around my hips had already shifted out, and the belly had started to pop. All I could think was, “holly crap how will I hide this for another 4 weeks!”  Somehow I managed to skimp by those 4 weeks in maxi dresses, flowy tops, and stretchy jeggings. Seriously thank God for Jeggings. I managed to make it to 16 weeks before finally being able to fit into my maternity jeans without them falling down. I say finally this time around because I have accepted the fact that maternity pants are just way more comfortable then the vanity of saying I am still in non maternity pants. I mean it’s like wearing sweatpants all day, that’s how awesomely comfortable maternity pants can be. So ladies who are doing this the first time around, just own the maternity pant and rock it. Soak in the glory of comfort for those months that you can be wearing them as proud momma’s to be.

My goal, however, is how can I get through the rest of this summer without having to buy summer maternity wear and use up the fall winter stuff I already have? This my friends has not been as hard as I thought it would be. Like I said with jeggings (maternity and regular), maxi’s and flowy tops, this has actually been fairly easy for me. It’s really just a matter of how creative you are with your wardrobe choices and shopping with the intention of can and will I wear this after the baby is born next season. Sometimes You can find the right thing at the right price, but sometime it’s OK to splurge knowing that piece will be a staple well beyond maternity. Here are just a few of my staple early maternity/ just get me through the summer items.


1 |2 |3 | 4| 5 | 6 | 7-  Originally form Here can buy here

Hope this helps all you momma’s to be out there! Happy Wednesday!

Exciting Things have been happening

It’s been hard for me to be inspired to write about anything these last few weeks, because of the amazing news I have been hiding for the last 13 weeks! But I can finally shout it from the rooftops and announce it to the world that we are now expecting our second!! The hubs and I are super excited, as well as little man. He was so amazing in being part of our official announcement that we posted over the weekend. He was so proud to be a big boy and help mommy spread the word that he would be a big brother and letting mommy take these adorable photos.


I cannot wait to share and write about; What the latest baby crazes are,  mommy to be fashion from small bump to big bump, How to prepare little man for a baby,and What I will do this time around vs last time

I mean the list goes on! So stay tuned for more on baby bump number 2 and all the great mommy to be posts to come now that I can finally share it with you all!

Road trips and toddlers

I know! Memorial weekend came and went already and I am just getting this post out! Well so where do I start? I mean it was almost a month ago!

We decided for our Memorial weekend we would pack ourselves up this year and drive on out to the beautiful state of Montana to help out my husbands college friend at his family’s cattle ranch. I know not your typical memorial day weekend, but wow was it ever an experience. Normally I spend this weekend sitting at a baseball field in the middle of nowhere’sville Wisconsin watching a baseball tourney. It was awesome to do something different this year. We literally got to experience what it was like to live on a cattle ranch. Rounding up cows and calf’s for tagging and branding, riding four wheelers, working in the hot sun from the early hours till the sun started to set. No joke, I felt like the pioneer woman! The best was watching little man assisting dad and the big boys while mom stood bad and tried to capture every moment possible on camera.





So in order to experience this amazing weekend away we had to get there. This was not a flying kind of trip so we packed up our vehicle and made the 10 trek on the road in order to experience this opportunity. Also understand that once we were there that was the easy part. A place like that has so much a kid can do to be entertained. It’s that 10 hour drive getting there that is challenging. Here we thought driving overnight to get there would be the easy part, hoping he would fall asleep in the car…Nope. I am not even kidding that kid did not fall asleep till 11 PM in the car, and woke up at 1:30 AM and about every 30 mins after till we arrived at the ranch at about 4AM. Poor kid was just a zombie by 5PM the next day. It was actually our drive home that was the most successful. 10 hours in a car all day he was a rock star. Between Veggie Tales and Bob the Builder on the kindle and the Fisher Price learning laptop my mother acquired for us, he was one happy kid. Why was he so much better during the day rather then night? I am not totally sure, but I do feel that having the right tools of entertainment, snacks, and furry friends to keep him company, help out a ton. So I wanted to share with you all what I feel where successful road trip essentials for toddlers

What I have learned are some essential road trips for toddler tools


1. A toddler neck pillow. I cannot tell you how many times this kid falls asleep and his poor little neck just hangs there. This is awesome for neck support so there little toddler muscles don’t cramp up.

2. Any Tablet of any kind for streaming movies and shows. We use a Kindle Fire HD 8.9 and along with that purchased a car holder (not Shown) to hold for viewing. I get some parents aren’t fans of to much tv or movies, but road trips to me are a special exception to that rule. a none screaming car is a happy car;)

3. Any type of blanket or dual animal blanket mix. I was lucky enough to get my hands on Fritzie the frog awhile back, and he is just the best stuffed animal blanket mix I could ever have gotten. for the car he is perfect for snuggling, and for staying warm in the AC.

4. Snacks! Yes we stop and eat lunch or breakfast on the go, but a good healthy snack is a great way to keep kiddos occupied and happy. I find these Happy Tot Bars are perfect for the road. Easy to eat and nothing to feel guity about.

5. The learning pad. Sometime the kids get bored of the same movie or show and are ready for something different. We acquired the Fisher Price Smart Tablet from my mother and it is awesome. He is occupied playing games while learning numbers and letters at the same time!

So the next time the opportunity arises to pack up the family and hit the road, just be prepared, take note of the items listed above and just try. You might be sweetly surprise how doable this really is!

Europe in the springtime

I feel like it’s that time of year when people tend to book a very specific type of trip or vacation… the European tour. Heck I did it myself after graduating college. I know more people this spring taking a big trip like this either due to graduation or just a trip that has been on the checklist for sometime now. With that comes preparation. I feel that many people are unaware of the preparation that comes with a trip like this. on the other hand some are good ole fashion pros! I guess I was inspired to share my thoughts about this because of a email I had received from a family member, with a ton of questions to help her prep her college age son for his upcoming trip.  I am not a travel expert, but I do feel I have traveled to enough countries thus far to have figured out a few tips and thoughts on prepping for international travel

How to pack 

This took me awhile to figure out the best way to pack without being that one girl with two suitcases, one being solely for shoes (J/K.) But seriously I tend to think about each and every scenario possible, and then I tend to over pack. First piece of advice, do your research on the places you are traveling to. what’s the weather like? whats the fashion like? What are the do and don’t in that culture for clothing? With that in mind pack with the idea of monochromatic and mix and match pieces. Staple pieces that you can create 10 outfits with by only packing a few items. Using the items below I can literally create seven outfits. A list like this can easily get you through a week in Paris for sure.

travel attire

1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6 | 7 | 8 | 9


You obviously need to put your attire in something, so lets talk about what to use. Depending on your trip whether it be straight up back packing or just easing through a variety of cities, you need to be prepared. There is never a need for a humongous suitcase when doing this type of traveling. Especially if you are moving from place to place on trains, buses, cars, etc… You need to be able to maneuver with ease. Other things to consider are toiletry bags,  are space saver bags to make room for things you buy and shoes, an outlet converter, and a lock if your suit case doesn’t have them already built in.


1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6

Money/phone/Day bag

One thing I will say that is nice is the evolution of our phones, money and how we carry around our belongings as we travel. we no longer have to use travelers checks (if you don’t want to), pay credit card fees, or carry hideous, “Hey look at me I am a tourist” type bags we live in a time where phone carriers can turn on international roaming or some just need a simple sim card to switch out as soon as they arrive in that country. Credit cards are starting to jump onto the no international fee bandwagon, which is wonderful since many like myself hate to carry around large amounts of cash. And how we carry this all around is another story. there are so many better moods of carrying your travel items with you and on you in this day that don’t cause you to look like a total tourist ready to be pick pocketed, and accommodate a camera.


1 | 2 | 3 | 4

Other things to consider while traveling are hotels, tours, excursions, dinner, and museums. This can all seem overwhelming, but again we live in a day and age where we can literally get to, and find, everything we need with the click of a mouse or the tap of a finger. Here are some other great links to help you on planning your European excursion

Hotels and Hostels and other options:








Italy – You can pre-order your tickets and avoid all queues to get into places like the Colosseum, and art museums like the Uffizi here.

Paris – You can buy the Paris Museum pass. This allows you into 60 different museums and monuments for either 2, 4 or 6 days depending on your stay and budget

London – Similar to Paris, London also provides a London Museum pass option.


sometimes finding a place to eat can also be an adventure. you go from place to place looking through each menu deciding if you like what they offer, and if it’s in your budget. Then you decide on the place you saw three places prior, but you can’t remember where it is. Well now we have our phones. if you get a sim card or open to international usage you can use these apps to help you find restaurants, ratings and all within you budget.

Droid – Restaurant Finder

iPhone – 42 Restaurants

Otherwise, when in doubt ask the locals!

Tours and Excursions:

I have found that when it comes to tours and excursions here is where you really need to do your own research. this really all depends on the types of excursions you like. Here are a few ideas I am personally a kin to.

I have found that Cycle Cities provides information for day bike tours for cities all around Europe.

If your into Hiking I highly suggest the Cinque Terra and the Dolomites in Italy. I am sure there are literally tons more around Europe, But I have personally experienced Cinque Terra, and my best friends swears the Dolomites are amazing! You can read her review and story about them here and here

*I also Highly recommend reading her Blog to get some other great ideas on where to travel and her own experiences.

Other great sites to get day trip ideas are Viator and  STA.

Lastly, make small talk with the locals and learn where the hidden gems of the city are from them.  Those hidden gems, I have found, tend to be the best places and I have yet to be disappointing with this method.

I hope this post helps all those getting prepped and ready for that upcoming trip whether it be this year or next.

Happy Thursday!