Thursday, August 25, 2016

Friday Favorites- SUMMER MOMENTS

We made it to Friday friends!! This week went by pretty fast as I took Monday and Tuesday off from work. We started 1st grade and the response I got when I asked how it went was, "MOM! It was AWESOME! We didn't do any hard work and it was so fun!" Only my child.. =)

I thought I would share some of our FAVORITE Summer moments today as I'm linking up with Andrea at Momfessionals. 

New Summer program for Sophia and new child care for Saidey kicked off our Summer!

Playing in the sand at the beach was a FAVORITE 

Swimming was a FAVORITE this Summer 

Family time at Des Moines Moms Blog event was a FAVORITE

Farmer's Market and grilled cheese with bacon are FAVORITES 

Thelma's Treats is a FAVORITE

Celebrating 4th of July was a FAVORITE 

Yankee Doodle Pops is a FAVORITE tradition

And let's be honest- Italy was a FAVORITE 
You can see posts about our trip here, here, and here

Celebrating a special lady's SIXTH birthday was an absolute FAVORITE 

Let's Flamingle!

Selling our house was a FAVORITE (the rest of the process- not so much =) ) 

Visiting the zoo was so much fun! 

American Girl dolls have become a FAVORITE in our house! 

The IOWA STATE FAIR is always a FAVORITE (two times!) 

And finally, celebrating back to school was a FAVORITE moment!

Summer 2016 was sure good to us! We made so many good memories! But Fall- my favorite season- you can come any day now! =)

Happy Friday all! Enjoy the weekend! 

Thursday, August 18, 2016

30 Things I've Learned in 30 Years...

It's that time of the year again when I start to reflect on life and where I'm at. Do I like the direction life is going? What have I learned? Where am I going? Birthdays never seemed like a huge deal in the past.. just another day and another excuse for cake (like I needed an excuse) but this year feels a little different. I am turning THIRTY guys. THIRTY. Ohmygoodness. I can't even believe it. I can't believe I am THIRTY which is only five years away from 35 which is a mere hop, skip and jump to 40! Catastrophizing at its best. Thanks  to my fellow co worker, Jessica for defining that for me. #therapistproblems 

Anyway, now that I am one year wiser, I'd like to share the thirty things I've learned so far about this imperfect, perfectly messy and beautiful life of mine. Here goes nothin'. 

1) Eat the cake. Seriously. Life is too short to NOT eat the freakin' cake. Or ice cream. Or both- what the heck! Indulge yourself. It's ok. 

2.) Fear is good. It means beautiful things are about to happen. Embrace the fear. Go with the fear. If you aren't scared out of your ever loving mind- something's wrong. Just go with it and watch beautiful things happen. 

3.) Be intentional. I think that should have been my word for 2016. Being intentional in positive thinking. Intentional on choosing happy. Intentional on being kind. Intentional in my responses to family, friends and my kids. 

4.) You need friends. Those 24/7's. Your people. They're almost as important as the air you breathe. It's all about quality vs. quantity, here too.

5.) Chips and salsa is a meal

6.) Being comfortable in your own skin and owning everything about yourself is a process. But as each year passes, it gets easier and easier

7.) Find your thing. You know, the thing that lights a fire within you. The thing that you can't go a day without doing. For me- it's writing and reading.

8.) Some people are assholes. Simple as that. No complex diagnosis. No complex explanation. Just an asshole. And you know what? That's ok.

9.) Getting financials under control is definitely not the most glamorous. But it's important, even if you think you have all the time in the world. Just get it over with and get those finances on track!

10.) You can only control your reaction to certain people and situations. Once you realize this, your life will become a whole lot simpler.

11.) Travel is good for the soul. It rejuvenates you and opens your eyes to the ways we as humans are much more alike than different.

12.) Reacting vs. responding. Two VERY different things. Learning how to differentiate between the two and then acting accordingly can be so.hard. But I'd go as far to say it can be life changing once you know the difference and see it play out in your life.

13.) We all have stuff. Everybody has a story. Taking the time to know their story and getting below the surface, you will only find you connect and empathize with them on a deeper, newer level

14.) Pinterest.(and yes, that is it.)

15.) Even though you are close to 30, it's ok to still jam out to MMMBop and Spice Girls

16.) It's a total cliche. But family is family. They are the constant in life. No matter what, Crazy Aunt Susie will always be Crazy Aunt Susie and you wouldn't have it any other way.

17.) Listen to your gut. Always, always. It will always tell you what direction to go.

18.) Always keep learning. About the world. About yourself.

19.) Less is more (in every sense)

20.) From Brene Brown: "I'll never know if people are doing the best they can or not. But when I assume people are, it makes my life better."

21) Goals. Make them.

22.) You can't please everyone and that's ok

23.) Being vulnerable doesn't make you weak. It facilitates change, compassion and connection

24.) Comparison is the worst.

25.) Invest in staple items in your closet. It is worth the money.

26.) You might like those amazing heels but your feet don't. So quit trying.

27.) Say yes

28.) It's ok to use your kids as an excuse to get out of something

29.) Wait to worry. "The average worrier is 92% ineffecient- only 8% of what we worry about ever comes true." Fred Smith

30.) Love and live with your whole being.

There you have it! The 30 life lessons I've learned in life so far. What would you add?

Happy Friday and Happy Birthday to ME! =) 

Thursday, August 11, 2016

Friday Favorites

We made it to another Friday! I have missed the last several Favorite Friday link ups but I AM BACK! I am now free from all thoughts consumed by showings, negotiations and contracts. But of course, now comes all the packing. 

Anyway, as usual I am linking up with Momfessionals and sharing my favorite moments from this week! 

 Our house sold after being on the market for about 9 days. We had about a showing a day and I'm so glad that part is over. Before we sold, we found a home we really liked- it was three bedrooms, had a fenced in back yard and was in our school district. We decided to go for it and put in an offer with the contingency that ours would sell. They ended up accepting another offer without a contingency three days before our house sold. Talk about a huge letdown and disappointment.

But, once we accepted an offer, we really started house hunting. We fell in LOVE with a home on Sunday and we put in an offer on it that evening. By Monday evening, we had an accepted offer (after a little bit of an emotional roller coaster, but that's a story for a different day)! We are so excited and now that all the negotiations and stress are over, I just want to be moved in already! We close on both homes September 30th. We have a little over a month to pack and I'm already wanting to procrastinate. I wonder how long it would take to pack everything up?? Hmm, probably more than a few days! ;)

We are LOVING watching the Olympics! It is a FAVORITE for sure! Can you say Michael Phelps and the women's gymnastics team!??! #finalfive

Jen Hatmaker's status updates about the Olympics.. are an absolute FAVORITE

This girl is my FAVORITE

I am always a Pinterest fan but when you are moving into a new home, I can't help but pine over all the pretty images of homes on Pinterest. Check out some of my home inspiration here!

Cat and Jack Clothing Line at Target
If you've been to the kid's section at Target, you probably saw the new line, Cat and Jack. I am in love, it's definitely a new FAVORITE! We might have possibly bought every single item...

Glennon Doyle Melton
I follow Glennon Doyle Melton and I can't wait to read her latest book, Love Warrior! This quote she posted is a FAVORITE

Love Grows best sign...
I've seen this sign a few times and here and there and it's a FAVORITE every time I see it. Let's just say that this sign will most be likely making into the new house...

Lace up flats

I scored these cute flats during the Nordstrom sale and they're a FAVORITE! They will transition wonderfully into the Fall months! I can't wait to wear with them cuffed jeans and a scarf!  I don't see the ones I have online but I linked a pair that are SUPER cute!

There you have it! Some of my favorite things right now! Hope y'all have a fabulous weekend! We're off to get back to school haircuts and run errands!

Happy FRIDAY! 

Wednesday, August 10, 2016

Italy Adventure- Ciao Roma!

I realized I haven't shared our last three days in Italy! I can't believe we've been home for over three weeks now. It's true what they say about getting the travel bug. Before we even left, we were planning our next trip to Italy (insert monkey hiding its eyes emoji).

Day 8 

We decided to take the fast train out of Florence to get to Rome rather than drive. We dropped the car off and headed to the train station. When we arrived in Rome, we took a taxi to the apartment. Our apartment was in a FABULOUS location, right next to the Pantheon and close to shopping and restaurants.

Our apartment building 

Our apartment building was just to the right of the Pantheon... amazing view and location!

We got to the apartment, unloaded and settled a little before getting ready to go to the Vatican...

Inside St. Peter's Basilica

We went back to the apartment to change and then ventured out again for the evening. We walked to the Trevi Fountain and Spanish Steps (they were closed for renovation).

Finished the evening off with pasta and wine! We walked back to the Trevi Fountain to see it at night too!

Day 9

We stopped at the cutest cafe for a fresh croissant.. yum! 

We then took a taxi to tour the Colosseum..

We also toured Palestine Hill or known as Old Rome

We returned to the apartment after our tour and went shopping for the rest of our souvenirs we wanted to get. 

We went back to the apartment to pack and get ready for dinner.

Views from our apartment at sunset... overlooking the square. It was truly picturesque.

And then.. we had our last dinner in Italy! 

Day 10

Our trip home was very uneventful.. until we got to Chicago. We boarded the plane on time and then were delayed for an hour on the tarmac due to weather. We finally deplaned and were told our flight was cancelled. We tried to get on another flight through a different airline but it didn't leave until 10:40. And then it got delayed until 1AM. And then it was cancelled. After some begging, we ended up on a last minute flight to DSM and got in around 11:30. It was so good to be home! 

Ciao Italy! We will see you again someday! 

A wonderful sight to see after a long day of traveling...

We are extremely blessed to have had the opportunity to go to Italy and spend time with the entire family. It was an amazing trip that I will always remember. 

Thanks for stopping by! Don't forget to check back here on Friday for Friday Favorites! Have a great rest of the week y'all! 
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