Monday, November 21, 2011

New Blog

Hey All!!!
The new blog is finished, check it out and become a follower over there for all the PB & J updates, activities and more.

Monday, November 14, 2011

Ready, Set, Go!

November is always filled with celebrations, plans and moments of stress but this year is slightly more intense. We welcomed the month with my 27th birthday including some delicious Mexican food, plenty of laughs and an overwhelming feeling of gratefulness for my amazing family and friends. Then we went straight into a "Little Guys in Ties" baby celebration that couldn't have gone any better. Each baby is such a miracle and I felt honored to celebrate my friend's little bundles.

This past weekend Jeff enjoyed some guy time at the Badger basketball game while I tried out a new coffee cozy display at N's Whims Holiday Open House.

Both of us had a great day that ended with late night game playing to celebrate a bestie's birthday, laughing until we cried, spilled drinks and lasting memories. Yesterday Jeff took on the challenge of finding us a different vehicle, we sold our little car (corolla) two weekends ago and have been borrowing my wonderful mama's car since then. So he ventured out yesterday with my dad and found us a fabulous new van, used but almost like new that I am pretty excited about.

After a rough night of whining, wetting through jammies and being squished in a queen bed with four people we are all about birthday preparations today. Jeff has the day off, is on his way to Milwaukee to pick up the soccer mom mobile while the kids and I work on race car decor. Since Pacey's birthday falls towards the end of this month we have to celebrate inside, meaning only family and a few of Pacey's friends can join. It won't be the big bash that Trexen has each year but I like that, more intimate and focused. Today is my only day at home this week as I will be teaching the other days so it is full speed, pedal to the metal, get it all done NOW time. Here is a sneak peak to the party. I have some Taylor Swift radio blasting, in my sweats and the house is a disaster, yep another party is almost here.

Supply Table

Current Mess

Friday, November 11, 2011

You've Been Warned

I have two thoughts about winter, 1. "it's so beautiful, a real life winter wonderland" 2. "oh crap my knuckles are white, my heart is racing and I would rather be anywhere than on the road".
I am terrified of winter driving, not exaggerating my blood pressure rises and I start to sweat at the sight of a flurry. I always feel like the vehicle I am driving is sliding off the road and we will be stuck in the ditch for hours. Maybe I've watched too many of those darn Dateline's about families traveling for the holidays, taking a wrong turn and freezing to death or maybe my subconscious remembers my junior year of high school when my realistic boyfriend (now husband) told me not to drive home the roads were too bad for my skills and I instead attempted it, got rear ended flung into a deep ravine and left with a smashed car and concussion. Who knows maybe I just don't know how to drive in the winter.

Despite the reason I hate driving in the snow and will avoid it at all cost. A few years ago my husband kindly obliged when I pleaded for a 4W drive SUV stating it would help calm my fears and is more practical. The fears were diminished slightly but that is about it. So after reading this I want you to realized you've been warned. When you see a large silver SUV creeping along at like 17 mph don't start using choice words, don't swerve all over trying to pass, don't flash your lights or give me one of those waves as you fly by, it is me all white knuckled, praying and ignoring your need to get by. All my co-workers at my previous job would joke about this, they knew if it started to snow during the day I was packing up and racing out of there to get home. They expected me to be late and didn't even ask if I wanted to drive for weekly out of town meetings.

This year I am hoping it can be different. Thankfully my current job does have snow days, if school is cancelled because of weather well then I don't have to go to work. I'm excited for this, staying up late watching the news hoping to see my schools cancelled, staying in jammies all day sipping hot cocoa with way too many marshmallows and taking the 20 minutes to get everyone bundled up and out the door for maybe 5 minutes of fun. I do love the change in seasons we get to experience here I just don't like driving in it.

Winter 2009

Just wanted to share a project I have been working on and will continue for the next 26 weeks. A friend shared this link to an adorable maternity book a while back and I kept it in my memory. I never did anything like this for Trexen and Paceler, I didn't even take weekly belly pictures with them. Not sure why, with Pacey I had a four month old to take care of while being sick so that explains his pregnancy. This time around though I feel differently, probably because my husband is pretty set on this being our last. Despite my pleads and begs to not make a decision for a while he is good with three, well he probably would have been good with one, two was pushing it so anymore than three and he very well may lose it. Not that I love the pregnancy part but I am not ready to say three and that is final, how sad to think about no more new family members.

So I decided to recreate the Mama Mia's Maternity Book, every week taking a picture of something that represents those 7 days and giving it a meaningful caption. It has been nice to take time each week to reflect and enjoy these moments because it is flying by already. I am 14 weeks and know the holidays will keep things moving right along. Here is a sneak peak so far.

Baby #3 Book

Tuesday, November 8, 2011

Holistic or Hazardous

Not sure why but when people start talking about holistic, organic, all natural I secretly roll my eyes and think "here we go". Maybe it's because many people are very passionate about this topic which can cause friction amongst groups or maybe it's because I feel a little guilty because I usually don't take the time to think about it. Of course I don't want to fill my body with chemicals and toxins but I also don't want to be so on edge about every little thing.

My husband is very much a live off the land, all natural, no dye kind of guy. When I get home with groceries I know they will be inspected, my choices will be judged and graded. He is strongly against corn syrup, extra colorings and anything else that seems hazardous. I'm not a toxin lover or anything but come on, $6 for organic jelly and $5 for a half bag of all natural chips that will be gone after one dinner and a lunch, I just can't do it.

I have gotten on board and made my own laundry soap, strawberry jam, we have all natural household cleaners and our chest freezer is full of whole organic free range chickens. Since being pregnant my skin is out of control, I mean it is scary. I've never had good skin but at the beginning of summer I occasionally enter the Piggly Wiggly without make-up and ventured to the post office fresh faced so when I got an itchy rash all over my legs and big painful bumps on my face (don't pretend you haven't noticed, you have) I freaked. I didn't experience this with my first two pregnancies so it is uncharted waters.

After several emails and chats with a good friend who lives far away but it always there to talk about anything I started researching skin products. Guess what I found... my approach has been all wrong and my current soap was filled with toxins. She recommended Dr. Hauschka's holistic skin care- extremely pricey but worth it at this point. Since the birth of her fourth boy she was left with scars on her olive skin and wished she has found this earlier so I wasn't taking any chances.

A hundred dollars later and my face still isn't good but at least I know there are no chemicals being applied and absorbed into my skin. I also found this awesome website that rates skincare products from 0-10 for hazardous ingredients, it explains them and the effects they could have. Let's just say I've become a little obsessed; I discovered my on sale what a bargain purchase for my husband's face wash may be slowly killing him with all the chemicals.

I have no plans to ditch everything, spend a fortune and only have holistic natural products but when we are almost out of something I will do the research, spend a little more and say no to all the chemicals.

Sunday, November 6, 2011

Little Guys in Ties

Today my house was transformed, a sea of light blue with pops of orange for a fantastic baby shower. The color scheme turned out better than I imagined and all the details were appreciated. Jenna created a super cute tie banner and the candy bar was sweet. My mom made the most amazing diaper cakes ever and I went a little crazy with spray paint. Seriously I have decided to choose two main colors for each party, buy spray paint and create. Everyone enjoyed the party and I loved putting it all together.

Invites: Paper & Pigtails
Diaper Cakes: Nise's Niche
Tie Cookies: Sugarbomb Dessert Company
Cupcake liners & candy cups: Hey Yo Yo
Tie Onsies: Emma Jeans Boutique
Tie Banner: Jenna
Other Decor: Me- Nicole

Wednesday, November 2, 2011

Little Guys in Ties

This weekend we will celebrate life, the miracle of two little baby boys. As I sprawled out my crafty gear on the kitchen counter hot gluing, cutting and painting last night my husband said it, the terrible question that just burns my ears and hurts my heart, "why are you throwing a shower for them, don't you only do that for your first baby?" Ugh, still after five years of marriage and many years of dating I have yet to fully influence him in this department.

No we don't just celebrate and party for baby number 1. We wonder why middle children or third borns grow up feeling slighted and pulling the poor poor me card. You may think I am a middle child because of my passion for baby parties but no, I am the first born. I did hear my sister's though whining and crying numerous times growing up, "she gets everything, no one cares about us". Oh pa-lease! They were not poor babies and we all received fair treatment and an abundance of love. BUT I do believe every single baby should be celebrated and what a better way than a fabulous party.

***Fine Print Note: Although I would love to throw parties for all babies and everyone getting ready to welcome a new one that is not feasible. My bestest friends and family are the lucky ones for now.

Two of my bestest friends will be welcoming little boys just days apart right around New Years. Both of these mama's have little boys already and are excited to add more blue, trucks and rough play to their houses. When thinking of a theme my friend Jenna (co-host for this party) and I wanted something a bit unique, something that would work for a double shower and something we could make cute things for. We settled on this adorable Little Guy in a Tie theme and I can't wait to see it all come together.

This was just a sneak peek so check back early next week for all the party details and pictures.

Monday, October 31, 2011

BOO Hoo Hoo

I love holidays, the preparations, late nights scrambling to finish projects, making lists, checking them twice and the joy they bring. Halloween seems to be the start, marking the beginning of a highly anticipated holiday season. Halloween has never been a big one for me but I do love costumes and candy so each year I give it a good effort. I also love how much it means to so many others, how excited they get about decorations, awesome party treats and coordinating costumes.

This year though I can't say I gave it my all, more like a 75% effort. My early pregnancy sickness squelched my motivation for wonderful costumes and Trexen declaring he doesn't like to dress up didn't help restore it. The boys still don't really understand trick-or-treating and I'm swaying more towards the mom who just buys them a bag of candy at the store than traipsing around in the cold getting plowed over by big kids for some sweets . In good holiday spirit though I got a bit creative, turned Trex into a fisherman and Pacey into his fish.

Well despite my three quarters effort it was a Halloween filled with lots of boo hoo hoo. Trexen was awake most of last night, his first soccer class didn't go well this morning, one of them was crying the entire day, very short naps and we only made it to two houses trick-or-treating. The boys cried going to my cousins, cried because I wouldn't let them eat all the candy, cried on the way to auntie Jenna's and kicked it up a notch to screaming on the way home. At 4:45 I put them in the bath, scrubbed and declared Halloween to be over. Jeff brought home pizza and they went to bed early. As I was grabbing my camera card I stubbed my pinkie toe, spilled my water and still hear the boys crying in bed. Oh me oh my, boo hoo hoo.

We will move on, get ready for the next holiday and step it up. You do get what you put into it so I guess I shouldn't be surprised BUT look out Thanksgiving I've got a ton to be thankful for and Christmas get ready... you know I LOVE you.