. . . for Lauren and Lauren: June 2014

June 30, 2014

Sometimes . . . .

tee: old navy   shirt & shoes: target 

I get stuck in a trend and want to repeat it daily.  Like tying a knot in my shirt. 

I wish that there was a new episode of 19 kids and counting every day.  That or Sister Wives.  Quite different morals I know.  I don't discriminate when it comes to reality shows.  Love them all.  

Tamar uses beaded MiniCards as gorgeous tags on her products

I wish I had a little business so I could justify buying these mini business cards from moo.com.  Or I could use them for tags for something for Addilyn's birthday.  

I forget how important it is to spend some quiet time reading and praying.  I easily get out of a routine, but thankfully it only takes me a few days to remember how important it is to make this a priority.  

I fall behind.  Hello 11 month update?  Nope.  Haven't even taken her pictures yet.  

I forget how much I love sitting outside in the summer evenings.  Enjoying a glass of wine, my new patio furniture and listening to some music on pandora using my new intel tablet.  (And of course using the camera function to take a picture to share.)  I love how small and light it is, but with a screen big enough watch netflix, and scroll through instagram and pinterest.  

Now if I could just make use of my time of scrolling through recipes on pinterest, and make a delicious summer meal, like this Spicy Hawaiian Burger to go with all this.  That would be even better!

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#spon: I'm required to disclose a relationship between our site and Intel. This could include the Intel Corporation providing us w/content, product, access or other forms of payment.

June 29, 2014

Approaching One

I have a whole realm of emotions at the thought of Addilyn turning one in a few weeks.  I can't believe that a whole year has passed since she was born.  Some days it feels like she was just a baby and others I can barely remember my life without her.  

Most days the pain of infertility seem so lost, but ever so often it seems quite vivid.  There was so much pain and heartbreak and loss that went into those few years.  I think having Addilyn has healed so much of that period of my life.  There are days that I just look at her and cry thinking of how badly I wanted her and how much my heart feels healed now that she's here.  But somedays I think about the babies we lost through failed cycles and an early miscarriage and I picture what they may have looked like. If they would look like Addilyn or whether they were boys or girls.   I can't imagine having twins, but I find myself thinking about life if the other embryo we had implanted would've stayed.  Somedays I wonder why God's plan wouldn't include those babies as part of our family.  

I think as Addilyn gets older I have more thoughts of what we went through to have her as I think about future children.  There were so many days where I prayed and cried to God, dreaming of the day he'd bless us with a baby.  I know that we got our miracle baby and if that is the only baby we have, then our life will be complete.  But I have hope that God isn't finished with our family yet, however and whenever that may happen.  I am in no rush to have another baby this second (although I'd definitely take one), but as this baby phase of life is ending it's hard for me not to think about the future.  

I am beyond thankful that God gave us Addilyn.  I know there are many people whose battle with infertility never ends and I can't even imagine being in that place.  It's hard because I almost feel greedy with thoughts of uncertainty and desire for future babies.  A few friends of mine where talking the other day about when they'd start trying for another baby and how many babies they want to have.  A total normal conversation, yet one I'm envious of.  While there is no guarantee for future babies for them, there's so much more that goes into thoughts of future babies for us.  

I think a lot of emotions that keep going through me come with thoughts of "will I get to do this again?"  For awhile I was getting anxious for the one year mark to be done with breastfeeding.  Addilyn is squirming, has teeth and gets so distracted that sometimes it seems like a battle to nurse her.  Nursing bras, pumping, not sleeping through the night, the guessing game of how much did she eat and why won't she take a bottle from Chris gets tiring.  But when it started to get closer to her first birthday, the idea of being done breastfeeding makes me sad.  I wonder if I will get a chance to nurse another baby and to have that experience.   I'm not ready for the baby stage to end. 

As Addilyn turns one we're entering the toddler stage.  A mom of a toddler.  When I start thinking about the strong possibility of not getting to do all this again I get sad.  It's easy for me to get stuck thinking about the future.  To wonder what our family will look like down the line.   I don't want her to grow up so quickly, as I'm not sure I'll get to experience this all again.  

But I know by doing that, I am missing living in the moment now and I don't want to that.  I am so content with where we are now, and playing the guessing game of our future is not my job.  

While I feel like so much of my heartache has been healed through Addilyn, there's parts that are still there. But those parts have made me who I am, the mom that I am and it's impossible to forget those struggles.  I forgot how faithful God was to us and how many things he taught us on our journey to get pregnant.  I know the same is true for our future.  As in many times before I think it'd be so easy if we could look at our life five years from now to know what it'd be like, but I'm thankful we can't.  I'm thankful that we have to daily trust that God has a plan for us and that He is in control.  

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June 26, 2014

Cooler DIY Ottoman

easy diy ottoman

I wanted a little ottoman or two for the basement playroom and had been to a few garage sales looking for something that I could recover.  I saw two coolers for 25 cents each and figured since they only needed to be sturdy enough for Addilyn to stand and climb on, they would work.  I already had fabric which makes this project just about free.  

If you've read any of my tutorials before you know that I rarely measure things and thankfully this time was no different. I started by cutting a long rectangle that could go over the top and cover the two smaller sides.  

I then cut out two pieces that fit the opposite sides. 

diy ottoman

I hemmed all four sides by ironing about a fourth of an inch and sewing them down.  

I laid the long piece face down on the cooler and then pinned the first side.  It was nice because I could line up the stripes.  Then I sewed the three sides.  The corners were the trickiest for me, and I'm sure they are not perfect but close enough! 

diy ottoman

Take a break when your baby wakes up for a nap and start again when she goes to bed. 

 Do the same thing for the other side.  Cut off any extra fabric on the inside.  Flip the right way and slide onto your cooler.  Done!

easy ottoman tutorial
easy diy ottoman

I made the other one and it went even faster having done it once already.  I love how they turned out! 

playroom ottoman
diy ottoman

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June 24, 2014

The good and the bad

tee and shorts: old navy   sandals: loft 

The good. 

I got these shorts at Old Navy this weekend for $12.  

I own so many of these v neck tees from Old Navy and wear them all the time. 

These sweet baby sounds.  This went on for many many minutes before bedtime the other night.  

I'm on a serious crafting roll.  This week I've made a curtain for our kitchen and basement.  Some canvases for our basement, a super simple wreath for our front door and started a teepee for our basement/playroom. I'm getting better at being productive during naptime and after bedtime and am quite happy about it!

This recipe.  Honey Lime Chicken Taquitos.  So good and easy. 

The bad. 

I'm completely aware of the ridiculous amount of wrinkles that are on my shirt, which are due to the fact that it was wrinkled up on my dresser and probably belongs in the dirty clothes but I wore it again instead.  

Due to my poor tripod timer pictures you can't really see what these shorts look like.  They have stripes and little flowers on them.  Here's a much better look.  

I had a rough run last weekend.  It makes me a little nervous for my 9 mile run next weekend.  But I'm trying to remember to take it day by day.  

One reason for my rough run is that my knee has been bothering me lately, so I've been trying to ice it once in a while.  Well something went terribly wrong the other night when I iced my knee.  I took the ice off after 15 minutes and this is what it looked like.  I have NO idea what happened and was trying to to panic but kind of was afraid my skin was going to fall off from frostbite.  I realize it probably was not frostbite, as my sister sent me a bunch of pictures of real frostbite. (Don't google it.  Gross.)  Thankfully it went down a little the next day and is almost gone now. 

Addilyn wants to climb on everything these days.  She hasn't wanted to sit still for awhile now but this has made it even worse.  It's cute but is kind of exhausting! 

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June 23, 2014

An unwanted workout

“I participated in an Ambassador Program on behalf of Mom Central Consulting for Huggies. I received product samples to facilitate my review and to thank me for my participation.”

I think Addilyn was almost as excited about trying out the new Huggies Slip-On diapers.  Or maybe it was just the excitement of another box to climb on.  Although I'm pretty sure she is a fan of these diapers as they have made diaper changes a little easier these days. I'm not sure who loathes diaper changes more.  Me or Addilyn.  Or actually Chris.  I think he wins that one.  

I feel like changing Addi's diapers is a workout.  No joke, I'm sweating after changing her diaper these days. It's an exhausting wrestling match of me trying to get her to hold still, giving her a "new" toy to distract her.  And by toy I mean the remote, my keys, a watch or something way more interesting these days than a toy. 

She is so squirmy and never wants to sit still.  These Slip-On diapers are perfect for your little squirmers as they slip right on so you can even change their diaper when they are standing up.  Of course this does not work for poopy diapers.  I would not recommend attempting that one. The nice thing though, is that there are still little stretchy tabs that can be pulled off like a regular diaper if you need to do it laying down.  And then roll up like a regular diaper to throw it away.  

Thanks to Addilyn's squirminess her diaper often ends up uneven, despite attempts to readjust the tabs. Which looks real nice when she wears little shorts and the diaper is hanging out one of the legs.  Since these diapers pull on, you're guaranteed to get it on evenly.  

I'm normally a big fan of my generic Target diapers and think they hold in messy diapers great, so I was a little apprehensive about trying new diapers.  I have to say that we have had no blow outs or leaks using Huggies Little Movers Slip-ons.  The diapers leak-lock protection and claims to absorb away wetness are holding true so far! 

You should head on over to huggies.com to find a $1 off any Huggies Slip-on diapers so you can try them on your little movers!  Save your sweating for a real workout instead!

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June 22, 2014

The Wrong Motivation

The other day when I was running I was thinking about why I do certain things.  It probably started because it was a rough run and just about every ten steps I was thinking "Why on earth did I decide to train for and run a marathon?" 

So I started thinking about why I really am running it.  Then why I'm making decorations for Addilyn's birthday party or why I'm spending time fixing up our basement to make it a playroom.  Why I want to buy and wear cute clothes or why I post pictures on instagram or write a blog. 

Sometimes I think there's motivation for those things in hopes of others' approval.  I want to have nice things when people come over, I love it when people compliment me on something I've made or a race I've finished.  I get worried sometimes that my motivation for things is in the wrong place.  I want to know that if no one else was around, would I still be doing most of these things.  Would I run the marathon is no one but Chris knew I finished it?  Would I redo our basement if no one but Addilyn played in it? Would I wear a cute outfit if I wouldn't see anyone I knew? So I started going through my list. 

Running a marathon.  I do go back and forth while I run as to why I am doing this.  I think having a big goal is huge motivation for me to get in shape.  I know having something that is just about me and not me and Addilyn is good and healthy for me.  To have time by myself and doing something that I (not all the time) but usually enjoy.  

When is comes to making projects, whether for our basement or Addilyn's party or whatever, I truly do enjoy doing it.  I am happy when I am sitting on the floor with my glue gun or at my sewing machine.  I love the feeling of finishing a project or accomplishing something I thought of making.  

Wearing cute clothes.  When I think about this one it's really pretty shallow.  Truth is I feel way more comfortable in shorts and a t-shirt these days and they often seem much more practical.  I feel good about myself when I get dressed for real, but wearing accessories, cute shoes or a nicer outfit seems like too much work these days.  

Of course with these and other things, I love compliments and approval from others (I don't know who doesn't) but I want to be more aware of why I do things.  I want to not find my worth is what others think of me or what I do or don't do.  I know ultimately my worth lies in God and nothing else.  I think God gives us blessings in things that make us happy, like running or making crafts, and wants us to enjoy those things.  But I surely don't want those things to be a source of worth.  

I was thinking about this verse the other day and that sometimes I'm putting my treasure in the wrong things. I know that there is nothing wrong with wanting to run a race, fix up my basement or want to look nice.  But I want to put my worth is something that will last far longer than my running legs or cute pillows.  

For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also. Matthew 6:21

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June 19, 2014

This and That

striped dress
target t-shirt dress
dress: target (recently $15)   sandals: target   necklace: old navy 

In the past I think I would've thought this dress was too baggy and too long.  I originally bought this dress a size smaller and returned it because having to suck in all the time is so not comfortable.  Turns out long and baggy is much more my style these days.  Unflattering or not.  Not sure.  Comfort wins.  

(both headbands from sweet angel kreations)

HELP! I can't stop buying headbands for Addilyn.  Everytime I buy one I tell myself that is the last one.  But then the next one is the last one.  I keep finding deals on instagram shops or those deal a day sites that suck me in.  But no more headbands.  For now. 

I stopped regularly checking the stats on my blog.  I used to check them every day.  Maybe sometimes more than once.  Turns out that was partly taking the joy out of it for me and in my attempt to blog less, enjoy other things more, that was not a good use of my time or thoughts.  See ya later stats.  I don't like your abbreviation anyway.  

My new Intel Tablet.  I somehow got lucky enough to try out this tablet and share with you.  As soon as I got it charged I downloaded my must have apps.  Netflix.  Instagram.  Pinterest.  Also uploaded my books from my kindle to it.  Hello new pre bedtime routine, which could easily include all four of those things.  It's big enough to watch Netflix videos on, but small and light enough to put in my purse or diaper bag if I wanted to bring it somewhere.  I've already used it while cooking a recipe in my kitchen, checking instagram pictures, watching a show while I run on the treadmill.  I am loving it!!

My new favorite show is 19 kids and Counting.  I love them and wish I wasn't caught up with recent episodes.  

I made this M&M Monster Dip this week and wish you'd come eat the rest of it so it wasn't in my fridge. 
Happy weekend! 

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#spon: I'm required to disclose a relationship between our site and Intel. This could include the Intel Corporation providing us w/content, product, access or other forms of payment.

June 18, 2014

Marathon Update

I am in official marathon training mode.  One week down.  Seventeen more to go. 

My emotions go back and forth between excitement and "what was I thinking?"  They can change by the minute while I'm running.  

Today I ran before Chris left for work and he asked how many miles and I said "just three."  Which is a good sign that three is becoming "just three."  And it felt short and relatively easy.  Victory.  Victory.  

I've been using the hal higdon marathon training app and I really like it.  $10 well spent.  I've never run with a GPS during training before and I'm not sure why not.  It tells you your pace and distance and how many calories you've burned, which is really helpful when you can rationalize eating two desserts that night.  I love looking at all the miles I've done so far and get excited thinking about looking at in a few months from now.
The only thing not good about this is my OCD with wanting to cross off each training day.  I'm going at this training knowing I won't be able to do each day and don't want to be as intense with checking days off the list as I was the last times.  This app makes me want to though.  

Speaking of second desserts, I am determined to eat healthier during these next few months.  When I trained for the marathon the other two times I maybe lost two pounds.  One reason is I think your body gets used to running and running and doesn't have to work as hard.  There's no guessing in what you're doing, so your body gets used to it.  (Unlike doing P90x, which I did one summer and lost more weight doing that, as I think you're targeting all muscles and doing a variety of things.)  However the other reason is because I justified eating way more.  Second dinner before a long run day?  Yep.  Junk food after a long run?  Yes.  Now you better believe me that I will reward myself with some extra desserts and will be eating more to fuel up for big runs.  BUT I want to eat healthy overall and if I'm putting my body and energy into training, I want to reap some benefits of it and not cancel it out by eating crappy. 

Shoes.  Not sure if it's because I'm out of shape, old or that my shoes suck, but my ankles and knees have been bothering me.  I've always always been an asics fan and love the look of these shoes, but may need to try out another pair.  I'm not sure if they're supportive enough. 

I don't always listen to music when I run because I like it quiet sometimes.  However I do think I run faster with music and as the runs get longer I think I need it.  I've been listening to Pandora and usually have it on Katy Perry station, which has good upbeat, run worthy songs.  I only have to give the thumbs down every so often.  

I apologize if my running pics on instagram get annoying.  But it gives my over Addilyn sharing a break, plus it actually is good motivation to run and run faster if I'm going to be sharing it.  And it's some good, needed encouragement received after.   Thank goodness for instagram filters though.  
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June 17, 2014

DIY Knit Headband

DIY knit headband
knit headband diy

Now I've definitely bought my fair share (plus some) of headbands for Addilyn, but have made quite a few myself.  Sometimes it is so much easier to buy them.   Etsy shops have way cuter fabric and take no time, which is appealing for sure.  However, these really are super easy, don't take more than ten minutes per headband and since I made them from old t-shirts are free!

I had this old apple tank top that I wanted to use.  (Funny because besides being too short I thought this tank top was quite young and childish looking, when really I've just traded apples for foxes.  Oh well.  Young I am.)

For the yellow headband and many others I've made I used the bottom width of the t-shirt.  This tank top wasn't wide enough to wrap around Addi's head so I had to cut it the other way.  The only way to get a long enough piece of fabric was to use the back of the tank top.


With your shirt folded cut off a few inches.  (If you're using the bottom width of a t-shirt you obviously don't fold it, since you already have two pieces of fabric).  The nice thing about this is one seam is already "sewn" for you.

Lay your fabric out flat and then fold with top facing each other.

Sew to make a long oval, leaving an inch or two to turn it right side out.  If you're using the bottom of a shirt (or fabric), you'll have to sew a complete oval.

Cut off extra fabric and turn right side in. You could hand sew the hole shut, although I found that it just folds over nicely and since it's in the back you can't see it so I didn't.  Then tie in a knot.  Done!!

knit headband 
hello sweatshirt diy
(hello diy tutorial here)

Now go make one, and try not to turn at least three more of your old t-shirts into headbands.  

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