Monday, June 30, 2014


I want to say that this weekend was a huge fail, but really, it wasn't. I had a goal of getting a ton of baby related things accomplished, but instead, I did a whole bunch of other unrelated chores. And a beach trip. Beach trips have become a weekend necessity. 

I got some cleaning and organizing done around the house, but nothing that was really necessary. You know, just polishing furniture and disinfecting floors for no reason..

Most of Saturday was consumed by a trip to the North Shore. After soaking up enough sun, we stopped in town for dinner. For some reason, on our way out, I picked up the book with the signed receipt and walked out with it. We'll blame it on mommy brain. We hung around chatting with our friends for a few minutes before our waitress came out looking for the receipt. 

As I was trying to escape with a sweet new restaurant credit card book and the waitress' tip (kidding!), I dropped my poor phone, which suffered an irreversible trauma. We've been searching for John's old iPhone 4, but aren't sure where we left it. My other option is a nearly five year old Droid. I've been improvising with Siri and voice commands. I figure as long as I can "call Hubster," I should be ok. 

Sunday was the day I got two items from my 20-ish item to-do list crossed off. I washed a load of towels and all three (eeek!) car seats. Then I made more lists. 

I'm kinda hoping that I have to be admitted to the hospital and induced on Wednesday. Packing a hospital bag and bags for the girls is my main priority today. I should probably order all of the internet stuffs that I should have taken care of last week. That's how unfocused the weekend was. I didn't even get around to online shopping. Speaking of online shopping, my Target stuff comes today! Woo! 

Hopefully in the midst of trying clothes on, I can take a second to focus on packing. 

I have a pretty good idea of what I need to pack, but since Adri was born so long ago, I feel like I might be forgetting an essential or two. Help me out mommies.. What are some must-haves in the hospital that I might be forgetting?

Friday, June 27, 2014

36 Week Bumpdate

Woohoo! We are officially down to four weeks until my due date! And, like I mentioned yesterday, depending on how my ultrasound goes next week, little Juliana could very well be here in less than a week. Eek! We still haven't even decided on a middle name..

As the time ticks down, there really aren't too many new updates. I'm feeling more or less the same as before, but possibly a bit lazier (if that was possible). The baby is getting bigger; I'm getting bigger. She's moving around less; I'm moving around less.

Although I'm feeling bigger, I actually haven't gained any weight since my 32 week appointment, which could be due to me watching what I eat. My booty is starting to show signs of stretch-age though. I'm hoping that if I keep upping my water intake, that will help with skin elasticity and the marks will fade on their own.

According to the ultrasound (and my pregnancy apps), the little one should weigh right around 6 pounds and be about 18.5 inches long, about the size of a head of romaine lettuce.

I've pretty much become annoyed with all clothing. My maternity shorts feel too tight, as do yoga pants. With regular dresses, it feels like my hooha is hanging out, so I've mostly tried to stick to maxis. I can only hope that something from my Target order will fit when it arrives next week.

Since I've gotten so much bigger, sleep has become more uncomfortable. Every night I dread having to roll over, because it becomes a whole ordeal. I can't just roll. My arms have to help and I have to go slowly and it's just annoying when all I want to do is sleep.

I have a giant to-do list for today, just in case next week is it. There is a ton of laundry to be done, along with the million other things that need to be washed/cleaned. Packing a hospital bag is also at the top of my list.

I also have to give a shout out to my little sis for always having my back and being so supportive (:

Thursday, June 26, 2014

Panic Mode

With less than a month to go until my due date, I'd be lying if I said I wasn't fucking terrified. John went into panic mode last night and started making lists of everything that needs to be done. At first, I found it pretty hilarious, and then it hit me that pretty soon, I'm going to have to evict this little creature. While Hubs is worried about stuff like furniture being set up and car seats being installed, I'm over here freaking out about labor.

Yesterday's ultrasound ended up going well. After poking my lady parts, the ultrasound tech was able to determine that a c-section probably won't be necessary. In all honestly, I was actually kind of hopeful for the c-section since it's an entirely controlled experience being run by doctors and not my body surprising me. The tech also measured the baby's head and everything appeared to be normal. My doctor also said that everything looked fine head-wise at my appointment the day before that.

The one concern from this appointment was that my fluid seemed kind of low. More than likely my fault though since I'm not the greatest at keeping myself hydrated. Don't worry, I've been chugging water ever since. I go back next week again to see if levels have risen, and if not, they might induce me then.

After the possibility of a c-section pretty much being tossed away, an induction would be the most preferable option. When I say that I'm fucking terrified, I mean FUCKING TERRIFIED of going into labor somewhere that is not a hospital. With Adri there was exactly one hour and 34 minutes from the time that I started feeling contractions to the time that she was born. 

So now I wonder, was I actually having contractions before then but they weren't strong enough for me to feel them? WTF does a contraction feel like? I mean, I know what the ones that make you want to castrate your husband feel like. What about the milder ones? Did I just feel a contraction? WTF are Braxton Hicks? Am I actually in labor right now?

This waiting game is going to give me major anxiety. In the mean time, there really isn't much I can do. I'm supposed to be staying off my feet, but let's see if I can get anything from John's list accomplished today. Even if it's just washing the car seat cover and hosing down the cracker crumb covered base.

36 week bumpdate will be up tomorrow!! (:

Tuesday, June 24, 2014 is Dangerous..

And I don't say that because of the whole credit fraud mess. No. is most dangerous to me because everything is so damn cute and I want it all. If it wasn't for the actual store here in Hawaii being so much more expensive than the online store, I'd probably have a problem every time I went in there. Lucky for me, I was able to score some fantastic deals over the weekend.

It all started two weeks ago. had dresses for BOGO 50% off. Score! I loaded up my cart, but for some reason I never checked out. Fast forward to Saturday. Since Target's online sales start on Sunday, I knew I had to check out that evening in order to get the deal on my dresses. That night we got caught up doing something and unfortunately, didn't make it back to the computer where my shopping cart was saved to check out on time. Bummer.

The new sale for the week wasn't anything that interested me, so my dresses just sat in the cart in hopes of there being a repeat sale further down the line. I had no idea that I wouldn't really have to wait that long.

Since Hawaii is way behind the rest of the world, timezone wise, it's still Saturday here while it's Sunday just about everywhere else it the world. So, this past Saturday, I went to visit my favorite retailer's website like I do every Saturday night to scope out the new sale. To my surprise, clothing and accessories for the entire family were BOGO 50%. Not only could I buy my dresses now, but I ordered a few other items as well, along with a few little things for the girls.

Target Haul

In an attempt to be the ultimate cheap-o, I broke my order up into four separate orders. It would make no sense to order one item at $30 and another at $10, and only have 50% taken off of the $10. What I did was split all the items into orders according to their price. All the stuff that was around $30 per item went on one order, all the stuff that was around $20 per item went on another order, etc.. In addition to that, I got 5% off with my REDcard. If you don't have one and you shop at Target you MUST get one NOW. And with the REDcard, I actually got free shipping to Hawaii (that doesn't happen very often)!

Now I'm just anxiously awaiting the delivery of my fun new clothes. The image above shows a good chunk of what I ordered. I went all sorts of crazy with bright colors, since it feels like my closet has become a sea of orange and blue (Go Gators!). I also tried to keep everything new mom and breastfeeding-friendly since that will be my life for a while.

I don't normally do a ton of online shopping, so if you'd like to follow a mom that does and is constantly sharing her top outfit picks for herself and her kiddos, make sure you go pay Kelsey from Pardon My French a visit.

Monday, June 23, 2014

Taking a Break

I think I've decided that I'm going to take a break with my Etsy shop. Lately, it seems to be more of a burden than the fun hobby that it used to be.

While John was on leave, I had the shop on vacation mode. Those two care package-free weeks were pretty fabulous.

When I first started, I guess I didn't realize that it would be such a time consuming project. One package here or there isn't so bad, but with over 125 packages sold, it feels like I'm constantly cutting and gluing. I hardly have the time to enjoy scraping for personal projects. And even if I did have the time, it's not like I would want to spend more time cutting and gluing than I already am.

I have to admit though, getting the super excited "thank you's" from people who have purchased packages, it makes the time spent totally worth while. I think it's necessary for me to refocus where my time is going, at least for a little bit. Especially with the baby coming in a month or so.

My plan is to finish out all of my current orders and then give anyone who wants to order until the end of the week to get any orders in. Then, maybe I'll reopen in time to do some holiday packages, or maybe not at all. Blogging has taken a backseat, so I'm looking forward to having that on the front burner again and catching up with my favorite bloggers.

Friday, June 20, 2014

So Much Random

I have so many blog tasks/goals written down, but I have such a hard time actually sitting down and getting them done. There are posts that I've been wanting to write for ages but haven't gotten around to them. Instead, you have this awesome post of randomness.

I finally sat down and tackled one of those needs from my list. Holy crap! We have so much baby clothes! So much that I wasn't even able to finish sorting all of it. I might attempt to finish the last box or two today, but more than likely, the piles of clothes will stay on Adri's floor for another day or four. I'm going to try to convince the husband to go buy Veronica a new dresser this weekend so that we can put the baby's stuff into hers.

Is it totally crazy that a song that Veronica likes came on while she was in school and it made me wish that I could text her to see how her day was going..? Yes, I wanted to text my four year old at preschool. John will want to kill me, but I can totally see myself being one of those parents giving their fifth grader a phone.

I can't believe that I'm due in exactly five weeks! I have another ultrasound on Wednesday and an appointment with my doctor on Thursday. To say that I'm nervous would be an understatement. I'm hoping for the best, but honestly, there isn't much I can do at this point to change anything. I'm also slightly terrified of labor just creeping up and surprising me, like it did with Adri's birth.

Last week I went to a coffee to welcome the new Battalion Commander's wife. I can't remember if I blogged about it, but I know I mentioned it on Twitter. I was pretty nervous since it was my first Battalion event here, but luckily, I ended up making a new friend. And I got a birthday party invitation for this weekend. Anyway, I finally got around to making and sending a thank you card to the hostess.

I searched on Pinterest for some inspiration, but even the inspiration didn't inspire me enough. Or maybe it was that some of the examples were too complicated for my taste. For some reason, I couldn't get the settings on my Cricut to cooperate and cut some pretty patterned scrapbook paper without tearing it. So, I had to settle for cardstock. I still think it came out cute.

The fact that my settings were being a pain, pretty much solidified the fact that I plan on getting a new Cricut Explore later on this year. Right now the price isn't terrible, but I'm sure it will get better closer to the holidays. As it is, I've made enough through Etsy to cover the cost and justify getting a new machine. And who knows.. I can probably sell the old machine for a good chunk of change. Or keep it as a back up.

And that's pretty much it for now. I still have major cleaning to do around the house, but I'm ok with being a little lazy for now. I'm thinking I might bust out the sewing machine this afternoon and make some cloth wipes. We'll see. Soccer will be on all weekend, so I'm fairly confident my husband won't be around. At least not mentally. 

Thursday, June 19, 2014

Philips Norelco Hair Clipper 7100 + #HighNTight Campaign

I received this product complimentary for review purposes. All opinions are my own.

Not too long after we got married, my wonderful trusting husband gave me the chance to cut his hair. Let's just say that hairdresser I am not. When the opportunity recently presented itself to give the Philips Norelco Hair Clipper 7100 a try, I knew that I wouldn't be the one doing any cutting. Instead I stood back an watched as Hubs cut his own hair. Scary stuff, y'all!

Right off the bat, I was impressed with this clipper for two reasons. The first being that unlike the traditional clipper that I'm used to where you have to switch out the little combs for the length, this clipper has a dial that allows you to adjust the length setting instantly. The second cool feature is that this clipper is capable of being cordless. Since we used it right out of the box, we had to have it plugged in, but if you're willing to charge for an hour, you'll get 120 minutes of cordless use.

In the end, I was actually impressed with Husbter's hair cutting skills. The Philips Norelco Hair Clipper 7100 made it pretty simple to achieve the High & Tight look.

In an effort to make a visual statement with the High & Tight, Philips Norelco is asking for guys to show off their iconic military haircuts with the "High & Tight Salute" campaign. Philips Norelco hopes to drive awareness for organizations that support our service members and their families with this campaign. To kick it off, they are donating $25,000 to Operation Homefront with an additional $5,000 as they ask their fans to upload their own High & Tight photos to Twitter and tag @PhilipsNorelco with the hashtag #HighNTight.

Need some guidance? Let baseball player Nick Swisher show you how it's done: here.

By uploading your photo, you also have a chance to win your very own Philips Norelco Hair Clipper 7100. Enter for your chance to win via the Rafflecopter widget below.

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My Pregnancy Must Haves

As this pregnancy slowly approaches the end, I wanted to share some of my must have items that have helped me survive this long.

Pregnancy Must Haves

1. Prenatal gummy vitamins: The gummies makes taking these daily vitamins tolerable. With my other pregnancies, I was taking these gigantic pills that tasted AWFUL. Fruit flavored chewables are the way to go.

2. Ice Cream: Ben & Jerry's Half Baked has always been my go-to flavor. Lately, pregnancy has been my excuse to eat whatever the eff I want. I limit myself to one a week. Bonus points for pregnancy-safe cookie dough. WoO!

3. Tums: With Veronica, anything with tomato in it gave my heartburn. With Adri, it was sweets. This time around, it's everything. And sometimes nothing at all. I don't mind chewing a couple of these to help get the yuck feeling out of my throat.

4. Caffeine-free Coke: Coke is to pregnant me what wine is to non-pregnant me. Although my doctor gave me the ok to have the occasional glass of wine, I've chosen to mostly stay away from it and have coke as my drink of choice. When the girls start to drive me nuts, I pop open a can and chug.

5. Baby powder: I always made fun of Hubs for powdering himself, but I totally get it now. Chaffing is a real thing, and it's real uncomfortable.

6. Maxi dresses/skirts: Thanks to my love of maxi's baby powder has become a part of my life. Getting dressed is just so much easier when I don't have to put pants on. It's even more convenient that most of my pre-pregnancy items in the maxi category, still fit.

7. Maternity shorts: These are a close runner-up to the maxi dress. When I'm not in a dress, I'm more than likely in maternity shorts. They're comfy and keep me from getting too warm outside.

8. Seamless panties: Maybe it's just me, but these are the only underwear I'm comfortable in. They're nice and stretchy and the fact that they're seamless, means I don't have extra fabric rubbing up on my irritable skin.

9. Boppy: Most people probably associate the Boppy as a must have item once baby is already born. I received mine at Veronica's baby shower and have been using it since that weekend. I wrap it around my waist with the pillow part in the back to keep my back from hurting while I'm sitting. Lately, I've also been sleeping with it.

10. Stretch mark lotion: I've been pretty lucky in the stretch mark department. I happily confess that I have not earned the tiger stripes that are often associated with pregnancy. I still use this cocoa butter lotion just in case though. Plus, it helps keep my belly moisturized, which keeps it from getting all itchy.

I know my list is kinda crazy, but I'm sure I'm not the only momma out there with unusual pregnancy must haves.

Tuesday, June 17, 2014

Need + Want

When John is off from work, there isn't much in the cleaning department that gets done around the house. Usually, the dishes pile up in the sink over the weekend until I get around to loading the dishwasher on Monday morning. I blame it on wanting to snuggle with my love while I actually have him around. Having him home for two weeks did not bode well for my to do list.

With Baby J making her arrival in just over a month, there are so many things that I need to get done. In fact, aside from moving the changing table around in Adri's room, I haven't done a single thing to prepare for our new baby. With Veronica, the clothes had all been washed and separated by this point. I can't completely blame having my husband around though. Part of it definitely has to do with third child syndrome.

+ Want: To focus more on scrapbooking for myself. If I have a chance today, I'm going to make a thank you card for the hostess of the spouses coffee last week and maybe work on that deployment scrapbook. I enjoy making the care packages for Etsy, but it's been a while since I've actually done a project for myself.

+ Need: Stop spending money. Having friends in town hurt the bank account a little bit. We've been irresponsible adults and have avoided looking at our balances. We need to just hurry up and pay the cards off and then survive off of ramen for the next few weeks. Kidding!

+ Want: Pick up some cheap summer fun activities for the kids. This totally goes against the last bullet, I know. Veronica asked to make some sprayable sidewalk chalk, so we need some spray bottles for that. I'm thinking that we should possibly also get a kiddie pool or slip and slide so that we can enjoy our back yard.

+ Need: Go through the boxes in Adri's room which still haven't unpacked to sort out clothes by size and season. Get it all washed and put away. In the dresser that still hasn't been purchased.

+ Want: More cloth diapers. My stash is pretty decent, but I want more. I'm missing a few of boyish colored diapers. I might buy them just so that I can have a complete rainbow. I wish BumGenius would come out with some new pretty colors or patterns for me to spend money on.

+ Need: Buy the few things that I need for the little one this time around, such as these muslin blankets. They're super thin, which will be useful in Hawaii. I have a friend who uses the blankets for nursing as well as keeping the sun off of her son. I plan on doing the same. I also need to get some newborn sized diapers and that baby book that is never going to be touched.

+ Want: To cut up the receiving blankets that we currently have and turn them into reusable cloth wipes. John thinks I'm absolutely nuts, but having cloth wipes will make diaper changes and diaper laundry so much easier. Yes, I have officially become one of those insane crunchy moms. 

+ Need: A nap. I know I've mentioned that Tuesdays are my busiest days. Gymnastics and grocery shopping are going to kill me today. I also still need to make a shopping list. Meal planning has not been my friend lately.

+ Want: To welcome my newest sponsor Lydia, the pretty lady behind The Few, The Proud, and This Marine Wife. She's a momma to three handsome little boys, as well as three angel babies. If her blog name didn't give it away, she's also a fellow military spouse.

+ Need: You to enter Amanda's giveaway for your chance to win this American Flag turban from Love Sewn Together.

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Monday, June 16, 2014

The Break is Over

Wahhh! After two weeks of leave, Johnny goes back to work today. It's unbelievable how much we've done so much in these past two weeks. I lost count of how many trips we made to the beach. I forgot my SD card at home for the majority of those, so I don't even have the photo evidence to help me out. I'm going to try to work backwards starting with yesterday to see how much I can remember.

For Father's Day, Hubster went golfing with a couple of friends. Because, what better way to celebrate Father's/Mother's Day than to be away from your kids. I'm not kidding. After golfing, we hit up the beach, followed by dinner at one of our favorite restaurants. It was the perfect end to leave.

On Saturday we went to an Eat The Street food truck rally. Normally, they have a theme, but there wasn't one this time, which left us kind of disappointed. Most of the trucks had the same stuff that we've already tried. We will probably wait until they have a theme that we're interested in to go again. The highlight of this event was finally getting my $10 mason jar of lemonade. The line has always been way too long, but this time we arrived early and headed straight for the line in hopes of not waiting too long.

Friday, Hubs went on a shopping trip with his BFF to stock up on golf stuff. Once they were done, we hit up the beach. It was a pretty quick trip followed by pizza with friends.

While Veronica was in school on Thursday, we went to the beach again. Taking only one baby to beach is much easier than two. Sadly, those days are soon to be long gone. John's Battalion also had a spouse coffee to welcome the new Battalion commander's wife. I was extremely anxious to go, because it was my first social event here and I didn't know anyone, but I actually made a new friend.

Wednesdays are gymnastics days for Veronica. After her class we did some shopping. I was looking forward to going crazy at Old Navy, but when you're trying to control two little people and keep them from knocking over mannequins, it's hard to shop. This is also the afternoon that I tried malasadas for the first time. I think they can be described as hole-less doughnuts..? Either way, they're yummy Hawaiian food!

I'm starting to have trouble remembering what we did Tuesday.. It was Adri's day for gymnastics, and Veronica was a bit sick and ended up missing school. I want to say that we bummed on the couch all day, but that's probably not the case. Knowing us, we probably pumped her full on Tylenol and headed out to the beach.

Since Monday was the last day that our visitors were here, we took them out to see Pearl Harbor. From there we did some souvenir shopping followed by the beach. And that pretty much takes us to where I left off with this post.

I haven't counted up how many items from my bucket list need to be crossed off, but there are quite a few! I should be posting an update about that relatively soon. The one thing that I know is that I'm slowly achieving my goal of having a sweet tan. In the past two days, I've received two comments on how my legs look so dark.

Sunday, June 15, 2014

Influenster Spring Fling VoxBox

I received these products complimentary for testing purposes from Influenster.

The Influenster Spring Fling VoxBox finally showed up in my mailbox about a week ago. One of the things that sucks most about living in Hawaii is that the mail sometimes takes ages to get here. When I first opened the box, I was a bit disappointed, but now that I've had a chance to give the items a try, I'm actually pretty happy with the contents.

Rimmel London ScandalEyes Retro Glam Mascara
So far, I've been very satisfied with all of the Rimmel London products that I've received from Influenster. This mascara is no different. Although the brush is shaped sort of weird and I need to apply several times to get an even look, I really like how the mascara looks at the end. I haven't had to worry about clumps and my lashes look dark and full.

Kiss Everlasting French Nails
Influenster Spring Fling VoxBoxI haven't tried the nails that actually came in the box yet, but I did use these exact nails last year for the Military Police Ball at Fort Leonard Wood. I never bothered to find a nail salon that I liked since we only lived there for six months. After buying a new dress and paying to have my hair done, I really didn't feel like shelling out more money just for some fake nails. These were perfect! They looked great and much more natural than a set of acrylics and lasted through an evening of drinking and dancing.

Peach Pie Car Freshener from Labor Day
I really have no interest in watching this movie. The car freshener does smell nice though.

Playtex Sport Fresh Balance
Since I'm pregnant, I really have no use for these. It'll be a long while before I'm able to use them. Because I was curious, I opened up the box just to give them a sniff. Things like scented trash bags really irk me. These are lightly scented, so hopefully that won't be an issue when I finally get the chance to try these. 

Nivea Skin Firming Hydration Lotion
I used this lotion for the first time yesterday. As a lotion, it worked pretty well and did it's job to moisturize my skin. Since it takes two weeks to start seeing firmer skin, I'll have to continue using it so see if I get any noticeable results.

Softlips Cube
The unique shape of this lip balm reminds me of those EOS balms that I'm obsessed with. The cube shape makes it easy to fish out of a bag filled with countless other things. I'm happy with the hydration that it provides and how soft it makes my lips feel when I'm wearing it.

Friday, June 13, 2014

What I've Learned From My Dad

Because Father's Day is this weekend, I thought it would be nice to dedicate a post to my daddy-o. I don't think he even knows what a blog is or that mine exists, but hey, it's the thought that counts. I could have gone all meaning of life with this post. Instead I'm keeping it quite literal. I'm thankful to have an amazing dad that has taught me so much, and is usually just a phone call away when things go wrong around the house.

DIY Home Improvements: My dad has always been a relatively handy guy. Growing up, I can't remember my parents ever having to hire anyone to come fix stuff up or do minor remodeling projects. When John decided that we wanted to add a black splash to the kitchen in our home, I knew it was a simple project that we'd be able to do ourselves instead of paying someone hundreds to do it for us.

How to Survive Deployment: Ok, since my dad is a firefighter, I actually learned nothing about deployment from him. When it came to keeping my sanity while John was deployed though, Dad was the first person I went to. You know Murphy's Law of Deployment? Yea, thanks to my dad I was able to make several repairs to our cars on my own. I fixed the garbage disposal and dish washer after many months of overuse and abuse.Most of those stupid little things that go wrong were easily resolved with the help of my dad.

Cooking: Unfortunately, I can't thank my mom for my kitchen skills. Aside from desserts, she has no clue. Sorry mom! From baking snickerdoodles to making juicy tender ribs, my dad has the best recipes. I can't even count the amount of times that I've given him a call for help with a recipe. Any time I'm preparing a meal for guests, it's highly likely that it was inspired by something made by my dad and he more than likely received a call or five as I was throwing it together.

Boating: My dad has had a boat pretty much for my entire life. Growing up, we were always out on the ocean. As kids, my dad would let us drive the boat and help out with some of the basics. As a result, I'm fairly confident in my ability to load and unload a boat from it's trailer as well as how to navigate without running aground.

Not only is he an awesome dad, but a wonderful grandpa to the girls. Happy Father's Day, Umpie!

Wednesday, June 11, 2014


The bloggity blog got a little make over yesterday and I am SO happy with how everything turned out.

I've been wanting to do a redesign for a while now, but I honestly had no idea where to start. This time around I was set on paying someone to do it for me versus using PicMonkey and doing it myself. The problem is, I didn't know how describe what I wanted to a designer, because I didn't know what I wanted. I liked the last design that was created for me, but I honestly didn't love it, and for that reason it only stayed up for a couple of months.

In an attempt to save my sanity (and some money), I went the pre-made route and found some templates for sale on Etsy that I really liked. The thing I liked best about pre-made blog designs is that I could see exactly what I was getting up front.

After searching for a while, I decided on a design from Kelsey. Her instructions made it totally simple to install myself, and she even included a bunch of extra little extras (such as the hex codes and font names used in the design) all at a great price!

Since our guests left yesterday, John and I used the day to recover. Who knew vacation could be so exhausting?! While he napped, I spent some time on the computer creating extra graphics and reworking html. There are still a few things that need to be tweaked, but they'll gradually get done. I hope.

In the mean time, I'd like to focus more on blogging and being more dedicated. I purchased a few ad spots last night, but I'm looking to buy some more. Let me know if you're having a sale or if there are any blogs that I absolutely must advertise on! (:

And if you really love me, let's swap...!

Tuesday, June 10, 2014

Father's Day Gift Ideas, From a Guy

I thought I had come up with the perfect Father's Day gift idea for Hubster this year. That is until his genius BFF showed him the tweet where I was asking for recommendations for an electric shaver. I swear, sometimes guys just don't think. I thought I would have to go back to square one, but instead I got some recommendations from a dad to share with everyone. 

Gift Guide for a Happy Dad

I know how hard fathers are to buy gifts for. We tend to buy what we want when we want it and when you ask us what we want we can never come up with a good answer. I come from a long line of men who are difficult to buy for, who say thank you for the hammer or the tie, then toss it in the back of the closet where it won’t be seen until next year’s neighborhood garage sale. So instead of the usual dad gifts, I’m going to offer what I think are some better suggestions.


If your father dresses in business formal on a daily basis, he has enough ties, and if he’s going through socks so fast that you need to replace them for every gift giving occasion, he probably has some sort of foot disorder that needs a doctor’s attention. If you tend to like to go the clothing route, how about getting him a gift certificate to a tailor? That way he can get something that he likes and have it custom fit. Not only will he have an article of clothing he loves, but it will make him confident to wear it.


Another obvious gift choice for dads includes some variation of a tool, lawn care item, or garage organizer. Honestly, I’ve always thought that this is the equivalent of giving a mother an iron or vacuum. That isn’t a gift for a person, it’s a gift for a house. If you are giving the house a gift, make it something my whole family can enjoy. How about a game of Kan Jam that I can play with the kids or a basketball hoop? That way we all get an item we can enjoy together.

Razors/Shaving Accessories

I’m pretty sure that every father I know has a drawer filled with various clipper heads. The best part is I don’t think a single one of my friends clips his own hair. We all head to the barber. So how about we take a page from the ‘gifts for moms’ playbook and offer us gentlemen some pampering? I would love a couple gift certificates to my local barber for a shave. Granted, it’s always a little nerve wracking letting someone near my throat with a razor, but as long as I’m not headed to Fleet Street Shaving Emporium, I leave with a close, tight shave, feeling great.

Hobby Trinkets

When I started playing golf, everyone gave me golf accessories for gift giving occasions. When I wanted to try fishing, I received a ton of lures. When I was trying to eat better, everyone gave me healthy cookbooks. Oddly enough, I never used any of the golf accessories and the lures were for a completely different type of fish than what I wanted to catch. I pop open the cookbooks occasionally but they mostly collect dust. I know people mean well, and of course I appreciate any gift I get, but I can tell you what I would have preferred. When I was starting out golfing, I would have loved to get a gift certificate to a course I hadn’t tried yet, or even better, golf lessons. When I was fishing, having a local guide take me out would have been awesome.

I think the common tie with all of these suggestions is that rather than focus on just phoning it in and getting your dad one of the basic gifts, consider offering a bit more of an experience, or just something that the father in your life would really get value from. Or just get us barbecue accessories we always need those.


Blake Daniels is a stay at home dad living with his wife and 2 sons in upstate New York. When he isn't blogging you can find him working on various home improvement projects, spending time with his family and pursuing a healthy lifestyle. If anyone has any questions for Blake feel free to email him at

Love, Alex

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Monday, June 9, 2014

Tourists in Our Own Town

First of all, thank you to those of you who commented on my ultrasound post last week. Prior to writing the post, I was mostly focusing on the negatives. I guess once I got that all out, I realized that things won't necessarily be so bad. A c-section is honestly the least of my worries. I just want a healthy normal baby, which is entirely possible, no matter what it looks like the ultrasound shows.

Anyway, a couple of John's fraternity brothers have been here since Wednesday night, which has helped keep my mind off of baby things. Except for the fact that I feel like I'm the size of a baby hippopotamus and I can't sit comfortably unless my legs are wide open. Those things are constantly on my mind. Along with not being able to breathe and constantly peeing myself. #sorrynotsorry

Since the guys have been here, we've gone out and done a handful of the touristy things that there are to do in Hawaii. Even though we've lived here for over six months, many of these were firsts for us also. Having visitors is quickly helping me cross off items from my Hawaiian bucket list. The guys did their research before arriving, so there hasn't been a shortage of things to do. In fact, I'm looking forward to resting and doing nothing when they leave.

Thursday started out on the other side of the island at the Spitting Caves, a place I had no idea even existed. We continued touring the windward side of the island before calling it a day just in time for the Heat game. After traveling all day the day before, the boys were exhausted.

I was the solo tour guide for Friday morning, since John had a schmooze fest social gathering at his station for all of the local police agencies. We headed out to my favorite spot near Schofield, Waimea Beach Park. This was the first time that we had been there that the water was absolutely calm and crystal clear. In the winter, I love watching the huge waves crash up on the shore, but the calm summer waters are definitely the highlight of this place. The parking situation sucks, but the fact that it's one of the closet beaches to our house makes it worth it.

Friday evening we went to a luau at Paradise Cove. I was extremely impressed with everything that they had going on. When we first got there, there were a bunch of activities for the entire family to participate in. Then there were a couple demonstrations, followed by dinner and the performances. Eventually, I'll get around to posting a full review of the entire experience. It was a long night, but there was never a dull moment.

Saturday was a boys' day. They did a hike in the morning, followed by a US soccer game, and then some more sightseeing. I was home all day with the girls. By the time they made it back, I was rather annoyed so I'm not even quite sure what they spent the day touring.

Yesterday we attempted to cram a bunch of activities into the day. After we left the house around 10 am, we didn't return until about 8 pm. The day was spent in the sun, so although I'm definitely getting closer to achieving that sweet tan that I was hoping for, this momma was exhausted. My girls were troopers the entire day, but knocked out as soon as we hit the highway on our way home.

Since today is the boys' last day here, we're going to attempt to squeeze in a few more must do's, without getting too crazy.

I will never know how tourists come all the way out here and have an enjoyable time... There is SO MUCH to do and it doesn't seem like much time to do it all in. Add to that, the fact that East Coasters are attempting to adapt to the six hour time difference. No way I could do it! As it is, it took us close to two weeks to adjust to the time difference when we moved here, and we weren't even out doing tiring activities all day.

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Thursday, June 5, 2014

Ultrasound Woes

Yesterday's ultrasound didn't go anywhere close to as well as I was hoping it would. I don't even know where to start because I'm still pretty upset. My main concern going in was whether or not the placenta had moved far enough from my cervix to allow me to have a vaginal birth. Those measurements weren't exactly where they needed to be, and neither were some of the baby's growth measurements.

At my last appointment, I noticed that Baby J's head was measuring a few weeks behind her gestational age. If her other measurements had been small I wouldn't have been concerned, but the fact that it was only her head worried me slightly. The sonographer remeasured a gazillion times and kept getting the same results. Since no one said anything or raised any concern though, I forgot about it by the next day. 

Yesterday, the same thing happened again. The sonographer redid the measurments several times, and each time I could see the numbers in the bottom corner of the screen indicating that the head size was off by a few weeks. Along with that, the sonographer noticed that the area that separates the two sides of baby's brain didn't look right either. She decided to go grab another tech for a second opinion. As soon as the sonographer left the room, I burst into tears and used a slew of politically incorrect phrases.

The second opinion wasn't exactly reassuring either. It was more like one of those blatant lies to get you to feel better and not worry. "I've seen this before and it can be normal.."

Things didn't get much better from that point. After having me flip in all sorts of directions and inverting the table to the point where I practically had to hold on to avoid sliding off, the ultrasound tech decided that I would need a transvaginal ultrasound to get the placenta measurements. Fun.

Once again we had to call for reinforcements, because things weren't cooperating. I wish I could blame all of this on the ultrasound tech being new or something, but she's definitely not, because I saw her for my very first ultrasound months ago. Plus her little picture wall is full of all sorts of pictures from patients.

This time around they brought in an actual doctor, along with another tech. They were able to see that the placenta still isn't far away enough from the cervix to allow for a vaginal birth. I have to go back in three weeks to be measured again, and that's when they'll decided if I need a c-section or not. I'm slightly freaking out, since I've never had any type of surgery or even stitches for that matter.

Needless to say, I spent the rest of the afternoon randomly bursting into tears. I wish I had some of the ultrasound photos to share, but I've been too upset to even look at them and I don't know where they ended up. As it is, I was pretty terrified of giving birth for a third time. This more or less solidifies my anxiety. It doesn't help at all that I got on Google and searched until I found the worst possible outcome.

I can only pray that things will go well between now and my delivery. Hopefully we can get some positive news at the next ultrasound. For now, I've been loving on my babies extra and praying that my third princess comes out at perfect as the first two.

Love, Alex

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Tuesday, June 3, 2014

Good Days, Bad Days & PIlls

Hubby is on leave for the next two weeks and so far, it's been rather nice. It was especially nice to have him home yesterday, since I wasn't feeling well at all. Not only was I feeling crappy, but it was extra annoying since just the day before I was feeling freaking fantastic.

Sunday was a rather rare day for me. The cleaning bug bit me and I got loads of laundry done along with all of the common areas of the house cleaned down. I went nonstop just about all day, and it felt amazing. We had a nice dinner out back and enjoyed time as a family.

Lately, I've started to notice that I don't feel so great on the days that I take my blood pressure pill. Sunday, for example, I skipped my pill. Yesterday, I made sure to take it, so that I wouldn't skip two days in a row. I think that I'm going to skip it for the next couple of days to see what happens. As it is, my doctor recommended that I stick to taking it once a day versus the prescribed two a day to keep my pressure from getting too low.

I'm hoping that not taking my pill today will help me get some more cleaning done. A couple of John's fraternity brothers are flying in tomorrow so I plan on cleaning up and organizing a bit around the house.

In preparation for having visitors, I set my Etsy shop to vacation mode. Is it bad that I'm super excited about not having to worry about orders and making packages for a little while? 

My labor and delivery tour at the hospital was supposed to be today, but I cancelled to avoid driving all the way out there. I might rescheduled for another time, but really, how different can this hospital be from the other two that I delivered at. 

Love, Alex

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