September 28, 2012


There are a lot of things that I love about Dustin.  I could list all of his qualities and attributes that I love and admire, but instead I'd like to focus on one thing and that is his attitude towards women.

When Dustin's co-workers first learned that I was pregnant, a lot of people began asking him if he wanted a boy this time around.  I knew from the beginning that Dustin loved raising our little Isabelle and that he had no problems about having another girl.  He expressed his thoughts to those he worked with and a lot of people, specifically the men in the group, were astonished by his response.  How could it be possible that he didn't want a boy?  A boy to carry on the family name!  A boy to watch sports with.  A boy to hunt with.  People were really flabbergasted.  And that really bothered Dustin, and not because he's neither interested in sports or hunting, but because he felt people were suggesting there's something wrong with having a girl.  That a girl is somehow less than compared to boys.

One night after work, Dustin told me what had been said to him at work.  When it came to carrying on the family name, my immediate response was, "People know that women don't have to change their last name when they get married, right?"  Dustin laughed because he said that was his first thought too.

We talked about everything for awhile, and things settled down at the office.  In fact, most people predicted we would have another girl.

Don't get me wrong, I don't think any of his co-workers meant to offend.  And they didn't really offend Dustin by what they said.  I think it was more shocking than anything.

I'm so thankful for Dustin because of his attitude towards women.  He has always treated me like his equal.  He has never done or said anything that suggests he is somehow superior to me simply because of his gender.  We also recognize that while we're equal, we're different in that we have different strengths and weaknesses and personalities.

I think Isabelle is the luckiest girl in the world to have Dustin as her dad.  I know he's going to be so supportive of her throughout her life.  He will expect certain things from her and hope certain things for her, but overall will encourage her to do whatever she wants in life.  He won't put any limitations on her because she is a girl.

And I know he's so excited to welcome our new baby girl into the family. 

After all, nothing can compare to the father-daughter relationship.

September 26, 2012


Dustin frequently travels for work.  Most of the time, he returns home at a decent hour.  His last trip was a different story with his flight not landing until close to midnight.

I knew I would be asleep when he got home.  I also knew he'd hit up the iPad and browse Facebook before coming to bed.

So, I left him a little message.

He's since left me messages too. 

I guess we're a bit nerdy, but it works for us!

September 25, 2012


Isabelle's stranger anxiety began when she was very, very young.  I'm not exactly sure, but I want to say around 3 months.  I know it was before 6 months.

As a new mom, I was very protective of my little girl.  We spent a lot of time at home, just the two of us.  All of our family lived hours away, so visits to see grandma and grandpa, aunts and uncles and cousins were few and far between.  And, when we did get to see our family Isabelle was less than thrilled and never let anyone else get near her, let alone hold her, without going into a major fit.

The idea of going out with Dustin on a date and hiring a baby-sitter to watch Isabelle seemed like the most daunting thing ever.  How could I subject anyone to Isabelle's fits or subject Isabelle to such trauma?

As a result, I was rarely without my child.

As the months passed, I decided to get a part-time job.  Isabelle was 8 months old at the time and my schedule worked perfectly with Dustin's so a sitter would never be needed.  I was excited for the chance to get out of the house and make a little bit of money.

The day I was offered the job, I was told my training would be a week long and at a different location and city than where I'd actually be working.  The hours of my training were also different.  As a non-driver and mother of a very anxious child, this presented a challenge for me.  Luckily, Dustin had a wonderful boss that was so accommodating to our unusual situation and she worked with him so that he could take me to work.

On the flip side, I had to find a sitter for Isabelle.  I had a good friend that offered to help me.  She had two young girls of her own and I knew Isabelle would be in good hands.  She also knew about Isabelle's stranger anxiety and promised me she wouldn't be bothered by it.  So, I sucked it up and decided to trust that things would be okay.  After all, Isabelle was only going to be with a sitter for less than 2 hours a day.

The first day she cried most of the time.  The second day was the same, but she cried less.  By the end of the week, she was still anxious to see us leave her, but she was much more relaxed and it was obvious she was getting used to the idea of being around new people.

That week was a great learning experience for me as I let go of my daughter and allowed her to adapt to new situations and experiences.

Now, at 3 years old, Isabelle continues to be shy, but she has definitely come a long way.  She is able to see my family on a regular basis, so we're all cured of her stranger anxiety there; however, she see's Dustin's side of the family less and is still prone to not wanting grandma or grandpa hold her which really bothers me.  But, overall, things have improved greatly.

As I ponder the new experiences she will be faced with in the coming years {a new baby sister, pre-school, kindergarten, etc.}, I worry about how she will adjust.  I have nightmares of her refusing to go to school, so I'm trying to do what I can now to prepare her, even if it's just in small ways.

Isabelle has always enjoyed dancing, so I proposed to Dustin that we sign her up for classes.  He was on board and we both were happy to give her the opportunity to be in new situations, to be in a classroom-like setting, to learn how to be comfortable around adults and children and, of course, to have fun!

On Saturday, we went to a local dance store to get her a leotard, tights, ballet slippers and tap shoes.  The store was very busy and I felt like a total fish out of water.  I imagined my feelings were how my mom felt when she first took me to a music store after I demanded to take violin lessons.  She had no idea what to expect, and I found myself in the same situation.

I caught myself being a helicopter mom as the nice associate worked with Isabelle to find the right size shoes.  It took all my energy not to answer the questions she was asking Isabelle, but to instead let the two of them interact and communicate together.

So far, I've learned that if I just back off and relax my daughter does just fine in new situations.  At first, she squeezes my leg in apprehension and is quiet and shy around new people, but eventually she does let go and blossoms as she enjoys a new experience.

I am thoroughly enjoying the idea of everything life has to offer Isabelle in the coming years, but know her growth and development and advancement can only go so far provided I learn to let go and trust that she will be okay. 


September 24, 2012

MUSIC mondays: of MONSTERS and MEN

Today for MUSIC mondays, I'm featuring my most recent iTunes purchase


I'm new to enjoying Of Monsters and Men.  I really like their style, especially this song because it's very relaxing and emotional.  If you go back through all the songs I've featured on MUSIC mondays, you'll notice that I'm partial to music like this.


September 20, 2012

IT'S a.......

A little over a week ago, I had my monthly OB/GYN appointment.   But this was no ordinary appointment.  It was the gender ultrasound appointment!

Typically my husband and I just go to the appointments so we don't have to deal with any misbehavior by our sweet Isabelle.  But, this time we couldn't arrange a sitter so we took her to the appointment with us.

I was really nervous about her being with us just because I knew if she acted up or got really loud and disruptive, Dustin would have to take her out.  And I really didn't want him to miss any part of this appointment.

Thanks to Isabelle's shyness, as soon as the doctor came into the room she settled down and sat quietly on her daddy's lap.  Much to my elation.

I'm pretty sure my doctor was joking around with me  because when he started the ultrasound he was going over all possible body parts except for the one we were anxiously waiting for.  It was probably only a minute or two, but it felt like an eternity.  For some reason, I just couldn't wait to find out if we were having a boy or a girl.

At the same time, Isabelle seemed to really enjoy the ultrasound and appeared to understand what she was looking at, at least when it came to the baby's head, feet, arms, hands, etc.

Finally, my doctor got to the main event and after forcing the baby to move around a bit, he told us that we are expecting a


We were so excited and in all honesty was not surprised.  I knew deep down that our baby was a girl, but I tried not to convince myself completely because I wanted there to be some element of surprise when it came to the big reveal.

It was a fun and exciting day, and in the end I'm really glad Isabelle was there to share in all the excitement; however, it's probably the last appointment she'll attend for the rest of my pregnancy. 

And, in case anyone is wondering, we've narrowed it down to two names.  We originally decided to keep the name a secret just for fun, but it's proving very difficult not to give into all of our lovely family and friends' demands of wanting to know the name.  So, who knows, we may let people know before our baby girl arrives, assuming we've picked a name by then!

{P.S. If you'd like to read a little bit more about my crazy life, check out Karen's post for today!}

September 19, 2012


One of the things I'm working on as a mom is letting things get a bit messy.  I tend to keep Isabelle away from crafts that I know will require a lot of cleanup.  I know that my attitude is wrong and that I should let her engage in all sorts of activities despite what sort of work is involved for me when the fun is all over.

Yesterday, we played with paint.  And it took me a good 20-30 minutes to get things cleaned up.

But I know she loved painting and creating because she asked to paint first thing this morning.

And how can I deprive my little girl of her masterpieces?

Share your photos today and link up!

September 5, 2012

INSTAGRAM wednesdays: feeling SICK

We had one sick little girl over the weekend.  

Children's Tylenol helped, but obviously the best medicine is being held by Daddy.

September 4, 2012

to you, the CONSUMER, from me, the EMPLOYEE

The next time you find yourself at a large retail store {not Walmart}, please consider my wish list.

If you are looking at something {like a shirt} and it falls on the floor, please pick it up.

If you decide not to buy something you've been carrying around, please return it to it's original location, or at least in the general location of where it belongs. {I want to pull my hair out when I find sliced cheese in the shoe section.}

If you decide to eat/drink while browsing the store, please throw your garbage away.  There are garbage cans located all over the store. {A spilled slurpee is never fun to clean up}

Please don't allow your children to wear a pair of shoes you have no intention of buying while you shop.  And if you do, please put them back near the shoe section so when we go to defect them out {throw away} they are easy to find.

If your child has an accident in the toy section, please don't tell an employee about it after you've already left the scene.  Stay near the accident and have someone else {the other people you're shopping with} find an employee so it can be cleaned up asap.  Would you, as an unsuspecting shopper, like to trip and fall in someone else's pee?

It's not my problem you have to rush around the store to get what you need when you only arrived at the store 10 minutes before closing time. {We're open for 14 hours everyday.}

If you really need a certain product, please come to the store and look for it yourself.  Please don't just call.  I am not your personal shopper, nor do I have time to run around the store looking for what I hope you're talking about while you sit in the comfort of your home.  {Have you heard of online shopping?}

What?  We're out of Easter dresses?  Guess what?  Easter is tomorrow.  {Last minute shopping does have its consequences.}

Contrary to popular belief, you're not the only person alive and not the only customer in the store, so please be aware that you may have to wait a millisecond before you can check out. {Patience is a virtue.}

When the store is closed, the store is closed.  In other words, it's time for you to exit the building and be on your merry way. {When the lights dim, that's your cue.}


Too harsh?  Probably.  But, I wish I could convey to you how much of my time is not spent doing my actual job, but on cleaning up after people's carelessness/laziness and it's exhausting.  I'm convinced if people took 2 minutes to throw their garbage away or put things they don't want back where they belong, I'd easily have 2 more hours to actually get my job done.

September 3, 2012


Today I'm featuring the artist 

AMOS LEE because his song COLORS is so, so beautiful.

I first heard the song during the movie Just Like Heaven, starring Reese Witherspoon and Mark Ruffalo.  Is that a fun movie or what?

I really enjoy Lee's voice and how he sings with such emotion in this song.  Be sure to check him out!

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