READ | Head & Heart {book review + giveaway!}

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Lately, with the holidays and a toddler who sleeps consistently (finally!) time has allowed me to dive into a few good reads. It’s a part of my 2016 goals to try and attempt finishing one book a month which I think is an attainable – depending on the book. I have been gathering a nice long list over the past few months of recommendations from friends, other blogs, and stories that have caught my eye while sifting through the shelves at local book stores and libraries. A few months ago, I saw a title a floating around a few Catholic circles I’m involved in that sparked my interest. I was lucky enough to be given a copy of this (really awesome, but we’ll get to the review in a second) book to read and share about in the hopes that it can give you the same inspiration it has given me.

Let me start this post off by saying that I have always been a fan the non-fiction, self-help book genre (which may explain my degree in psychology). I’ve always loved learning practical steps that I can apply in the daily practices of my own life that will hopefully lead me to becoming a better person. I love reading books that leave me inspired, refreshed, and ready for a change whether that be big or small. The Head and Heart is a practical spiritual guide written by Katie Warner that is filled with concrete steps that I can easily add to my daily practices.

An area in my life that has been lacking lately is major spiritual growth in my relationship with my husband. Sure, day to day we pray for each other when there is something big going on in the others life and when we remember (or stay awake long enough) we pray with each other before falling asleep at night. These are all really great things and I’m sure more than some couples do on a regular basis – however, for us it seems like we are meeting the bare minimum requirements of a couple’s prayer life together. We aren’t necessarily finding challenging ways or new innovative ways to pray with and for each other so we haven’t been seeing a very drastic change in our spiritual life together.

In comes this book. It really was delivered into my hands at the perfect time – right around the time I was having this realization that our prayer life was dwindling and right before my husband went on his annual silent retreat. I was able to read the book before he left for his few prayer filled days and he was able to read it while on retreat. We have both come away after reading this book with a refreshed sense of what we both need and desire to do for the spiritual growth needed in our marriage.

I think what I loved most about this book was that it broke down the spiritual roles of men and women in relationships so concretely and specifically; explaining why females and males are drawn to providing spiritually in certain ways. It can be tough being an active practicing Catholic today’s culture. Especially as a woman, when I feel like the media and the world is shouting at us to be independent to the point of shutting ourselves off from any help, even more so when that help is provided by a man. But as a woman I have always felt the need to be spiritually lead. I have a hard time keeping tabs on my own prayer life and need the reminder of another human person to keep me accountable. I’ve always felt a little self conscious about this personality trait of mine until reading this book when I realized that craving spiritual leadership and guidance from my husband is natural, normal, completely acceptable!

Another tidbit from the book that I think both Eric and myself benefitted from was the reminder it provided that prayer doesn’t have to be this beautifully eloquent production in order to be worthwhile. I have always thought that if I don’t journal at the end of the day or make time for some lengthy form of prayer every day that somehow my small and constant conversation with God throughout the day didn’t count. Often times the fear of providing inadequate prayer for my spouse is what keeps me from praying out loud with him – when I just need to remember that anything, no matter if it is a single Hail Mary or a sleepy ramble of intentions at the end of the day, is a beautiful and decent prayer in the eyes of God.

I thought it was only fair that the husband had a chance to share his thoughts on the book in case you are interested in a guy’s perspective (or if you are met with some resistance from your spouse about this book – maybe an alternate viewpoint might help;):

I have never really been drawn to self-help type books, usually preferring fiction, or non-fiction that educates me about the world around me – but as its title hints, Head and Heart really does have something for everyone.  The way the complementary roles of husbands and wives were described really resonated with me – and kept me reading with an open mind to learn something new about myself, and my marriage.

A standout feature of the book is twofold – the author suggests, and even insists that you don’t try everything in the book at once, and each area has tiered options for improvement, based on your current proficiency or comfort in that area.  I was able to pick and choose the pieces that were relevant and at my level, without feeling the need to follow a one size fits all path all the way through the book, which really helped me act on the content in a meaningful way.

This book would be a fantastic addition to anyone’s Lent plans this year or a great Valentine’s present to give to your spouse and work through together! I really cannot recommend it enough. It’s a book that has brought some much needed inspiration to our life as a couple and I hope that it can do the same for you!

If you want to win your own free copy of this book leave a comment below and a winner will be picked next Thursday February 4th. Happy reading!

**CONGRATS SHARON! I will be contacting you about your free copy! (: **

 

3 years

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This summer we have been fortunate enough to celebrate weddings and new marriages of family and close friends. I don’t think I am alone in loving a good wedding celebration. It reminds me of our wedding and fills me with all of the warm, fuzzy, butterfly feelings that I tend to have when thinking back on the day that started our journey down this exciting, unpredictable road called marriage.

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I remember before we were married, before we were engaged – seeing married couples at weddings and wondering what they could be thinking about. Watching them sway back and forth on the dance floor and stare lovingly into each others eyes. It always filled my heart to the brim with emotion. I wanted to be married one day and I wanted to be one of those couples on the dance floor, so in love with each other. While I am still practically a newlywed and my wealth of marital wisdom is relatively low – I think I am starting to realize that the looks those couples were giving each other were more so out of appreciation, admiration, and respect that any lovey-dovey-emotionally-fueled-feelings that I was probably experiencing as an onlooker.

Honestly, this third year of marriage has been by far the most challenging. New jobs, new roles, new home, parenting, growing, moving… so needless to say the past 365 days weren’t without stress or moments of anxiety. Something else the past year wasn’t lacking was a partner to weather the storm. Solid, unwavering, supportive, true. Sometimes I just can’t believe that my husband has continued to love me through it all.

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So much life has happened since August 4, 2012 and I hate to sound cliche but I really didn’t realize just how fast the years would fly. I wonder if I will feel the same way when we hit twenty or thirty years of marriage. I secretly hope that the feeling of “it was just yesterday that we were dancing at our wedding reception!” will permeate through those years. I never really want that newness, or shocking realization that we hit another anniversary to go away – I always want to be surprised that even though our wedding may have been a while ago…it still feels like it has been a relatively short amount of time.

Anyway, I’m rambling. I just can’t believe that I’m living this vocation. That God has provided for us in so many ways and continues to work through our marriage. I can’t believe that we are making it, that we are really living this good life and I’m just so grateful to be in this sacrament with such a truly fantastic person.

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I think C.S. Lewis does a much better job at constructing the thoughts I am trying to convey here in this post so I will end with this, it is one of my favorite quotes about love and marriage:

“Being in love is a good thing, but it is not the best thing. There are many things below it, but there are also things above it. You cannot make it the basis of a whole life. It is a noble feeling, but it is still a feeling. Now no feeling can be relied on to last in its full intensity, or even to last at all. Knowledge can last, principles can last, habits can last but feelings come and go. And in fact, whatever people say, the state called ‘being in love’ usually does not last. If the old fairy-tale ending ‘They lived happily ever after’ is taken to mean ‘They felt for the next fifty years exactly as they felt the day before they were married,’ then it says what probably never was nor ever would be true, and would be highly undesirable if it were. Who could bear to live in that excitement for even five years? What would become of your work, your appetite, your sleep, your friendships? But, of course, ceasing to be ‘in love’ need not mean ceasing to love. Love in this second sense — love as distinct from ‘being in love’ — is not merely a feeling. It is a deep unity, maintained by the will and deliberately strengthened by habit; reinforced by (in Christian marriages) the grace which both partners ask, and receive, from God. They can have this love for each other even at those moments when they do not like each other; as you love yourself even when you do not like yourself. They can retain this love even when each would easily, if they allowed themselves, be ‘in love’ with someone else. ‘Being in love’ first moved them to promise fidelity: this quieter love enables them to keep the promise. it is on this love that the engine of marriage is run: being in love was the explosion that started it.”

I love you, Eric Martin. Thank you for choosing to love me. Happy Anniversary!

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2nd anniversary post

Right after we got married! 

FAMILY | mother’s day 2015

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Happy Monday y’all + a happy belated mother’s day to those who were celebrating the holiday yesterday. I have always loved this special day and a few years ago I even wrote a post about my feelings on this special day as an unmarried, childless person (if you want to take a peek click here). I vaguely remember writing a post last year about my first mother’s day but I think it was lost somewhere in the shuffle between sleep deprivation, hormonal mood swings that rivaled that of a 13 year old girl and always having a newborn attached to my person.

This year’s celebration was absolutely wonderful. I felt pretty celebrated the whole weekend and the best part was that we didn’t really do anything extravagant. For the most part it was a relatively normal weekend. We even had mother’s day brunch at our house instead of out because my brother-in-law and his family were coming over and two little ones were easier to entertain among the masses of baby toys at our house. I was able to sneak away for a couple of hours and enjoy some time with one of my best friends while getting my nails done and enjoying an iced green tea and then my husband + sweet girl surprised me with my own kindle for mother’s day! (Now I won’t be keeping my husband awake at night while reading on the iPad.;) The best gift though really was just feeling appreciated in the day to day this weekend. I have been in a bit of a funk lately and the past two days really rejuvenated my soul in so many ways.

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Yesterday I posted a photo on Instagram from the night Madeline was born. It was our first family picture and far by my favorite from the night. After so many hours of labor, so much pushing, so many scary new-mom-never-having-gone-through-labor moments I was so relieved to have my girl with us when I honestly didn’t think I was strong enough to get her here. I remember crying so hard with my husband after that final push because I did it! I actually did it! And I don’t think either one of us could really believe it. It reminded me of when I found out I was pregnant and I really couldn’t believe that there was a tiny little person starting to form right inside me and I had so many doubts that I would really be able to handle pregnancy and becoming a mom. Along with that picture I posted I found a quote that really encapsulated my unbelief of this whole motherhood gig, “The biggest surprise, which is also the best, is that I didn’t know I would love motherhood as much as I do.” – Deborah Norville

I need to have that quote printed in big bold letters on days that are tough and trying and down right exhausting.

Being completely and totally cliche here: I just never realized how life changing being a mom would be. I remember being so self conscious last year about my ever expanding belly and whether or not I was going to go back to work. When I decided to stay home (and eventually choose to work part time) I didn’t really know how to identify myself anymore. I wasn’t a teacher, I wasn’t working towards anything in that field, I was just a mom…but what did that mean? And I found out that along with the surprise that was being pregnant, and the surprise that was labor and delivery, it meant that I would need to surprise myself and challenge myself in ways that I never thought I would. It meant that I would lose a part of myself to gain a kind of love that only the grace of God could supply in my heart. It meant that I would sacrifice things that I worked hard for on my own so that another little person could thrive in our home. It meant surrendering all to His will and not my own. 10347082_2270901622236_7616151671525193603_n (1)

His will and not my own.

Words I have prayed over and over again, but not until now have I really realized that I am doing that thing.

Doing that thing, that motherhood thing, and really truly loving it.

Motherhood really has been the best surprise and I thank God for that blessing in my life, but really the best blessing of all was how much I love being a mom and caring for someone more than myself to give her the best life.

I hope you all had a lovely day filled with sloppy baby kisses, phone calls to your own mom, or just a celebration of life in general.

FAMILY | weekend update: ice, ice baby

I know, I know you can go ahead and crown me most creative blog-post-titler in the world. I don’t think it will come as any surprise that we were snowed/iced in this weekend and a couple of other days last week because of all of the wonderful wintery pictures that have been floating around social media. When Texas gets snow, we like to make it known to the world that we are shutting. it. down. until things melt away. While I will say, I think some Texans can be a little dramatic in their response to a few pieces of fluff falling from the sky – I myself with not have anything to do with ice and pretty much will camp out until I can see the actual road again. Here are a few snaps from our little snowed in weekend.

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Kaylee’s thoughts on the snow – our little four legged princess.

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I was subbing on Friday and was lucky enough to be working in a classroom that had a wall full of windows so me and the kiddos were able to watch the grass outside go from slightly frosty in the morning to completely covered up in the afternoon. I guess I was so distracted by the magic of it all that I didn’t realize driving conditions were worsening until my husband texted me to head home asap. So head home we did – me and my very tired kidlet who is now suffering from her FOURTH ear infection. ): I think a snow day(s) is exactly what we needed to slow down and get this little girl well. Back tracking a bit: we went to the doctor on Thursday because she was showing signs of an ear infection but I was hoping we would leave the pediatricians office with happier news. I feel so bad for this little girl and I’m not entirely sure what I can do to prevent these ear infections. For now she seems to be on the up and up with this new antibiotic and has been resting as much as a 10 month old will rest.

Once things started to thaw on Saturday we unpacked a few more boxes and geared up for a busy afternoon/evening. I went off for a couple of hours with two other mamas from our church’s mom’s group to a little place called Sip-N-Doodle. Where we snacked, chatted, and painted some lovely pieces of art for our homes. Mine is in the middle and will be going in little Miss M’s room. (:

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After that, Eric and I went out to a surprise party for a dear friend who will be in Italy for the next four months traveling + baking! We are so excited for her and had a blast with everyone. It was one of those nights that left us both smiling as we walked out the door. We were able to catch up with some people that we hadn’t seen in a while and chit chat with a few new faces. All in all, a great weekend and here’s to hoping for better weather this week ahead! I’m ready to get out and do some things with my little side kick!

Happy Monday + more importantly, happy Texas independence day!

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FAMILY | lately

Lately… there has been a lot of transition and not a whole lot of predictability in our days. We made our big move to the house last week and are currently swimming in boxes. We chip away at the constant need to unpack and yet I feel like things continue to be a mess. I keep trying to remind myself that in all of this chaos is our new home. The home we have been wanting for so long and the home that we already love and adore despite our messes at the moment.

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Lately… I have been thinking a lot about my Lenten goals and hopes for this season. Last year I was more pregnant than I ever thought I could be and so my sacrifices for those 40 days revolved around sciatic pain, childbirth and new born sleep deprivation. I was able to fit in a couple of holy hours before M made her arrival but for the most part I was far too involved in the life of my new baby to really focus on much besides the daily offerings of a new parent. This year I am attending a lenten bible study with my mom’s group at church as well as diving into some deeper prayer. I’m really looking forward to what this season will bring and I’m ready to be more aware of my relationship with God.

Lately…I feel like I am getting back into touch with some things I have let go for the past few months due to house hunting, house buying, and house moving into. We are making travel plans for the summer, talking about some long term goals, and I’m starting to focus on these weddings we have coming up in the next few months!

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Lately… I have been thinking a lot about our NOLA family and friends who just finished up the Mardi Gras season. It has been way too long since we have been down there for some parades. I feel like next year we are going to need to make that a priority because I need some tailgating + bead catching + king cake eating in my life. Here’s a blast from the past for you, a picture from my first Mardi Gras – we had only been dating a month! What babies! (:

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Lately… I have been thinking about this blog and my purpose for it. It’s a question that is constantly buzzing around in my brain and I’m always looking for inspiration and direction for it. Hopefully now that our big move is over I can start carving out some regular writing time again and get back into the swing of this little hobby.

Happy Monday everyone (:

FAITH | humility of house hunting

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I think the title gives enough explanation as to what has been going on over in our neck of the woods lately. We have been house hunting for almost a month now and man, I knew it would be tough…but I think in terms of the emotions that come with finding a house that the word tough is a understatement. I am going to start this with a disclaimer that I am fully aware of my overly sensitive nature and that the combination of looking at house after house and being repeatedly disappointed in conjunction with my ever emotional self is starting to take it’s toll. I’m sure I am not alone in my sentiments of wanting a house search to be over (it could have been over on our first day of hunting and that would have been fine with me!), but I am not so sure that it is normal for me to be feeling so DONE after only ONE month.

Everyone I have talked to has warned me about how terrible the search can be – with a few exceptions of those who truly did enjoy the process. I was really hoping to be a member of the latter and envisioned Eric and I looking at a handful of houses and finding an adorable abode in no time. Honestly, thinking about how naive that sentence is makes me a little sick to my stomach considering the past few weeks. I feel like we have seen a little bit of everything from scary houses that do NOT match the listing description (note to self: if the seller hasn’t posted any pictures, it’s probably for a good [ugly] reason) to completely wood paneled living rooms (and bathrooms, and bedrooms, and…every room), to homes that we could imagine actually living in and planning future weekend projects together.

The last one was a kicker. Two weeks ago, after a crazy weekend filled with family and other non-related house hunting events we ended up putting an offer on a house; the first house that we BOTH loved – only to be turned down a few (excruciatingly long) days later. It really hurt and it took me a couple days to get back in the saddle and even browse through new listings from our agent. But of course, with struggle and sacrifice come the greatest of life lessons and I can honestly say that these past few weeks, while tough, have been yet another much needed lesson in humility.

Humility. Oh, how I wish this were not a lesson I had to learn over and over and over again. I feel like I am constantly needing a reminder from Him that I am not the most important. I do not know what I really need in this life. I need to trust more. Be more willing to go with the flow and live the life that has been so greatly provided for me. I’m not always going to get what I want, especially when it’s not what He wants for me or our family right now. I know that years down the road I will look back and know why we didn’t get that house, but right now it’s hard to think about it too long. My heart was in it. I really wanted it, and I think it’s ok to admit I am more than a little hurt by this process and what we have had to deal with lately. But if I am being completely honest, this is not the first time I have felt this way.

I can remember numerous times in my short life getting way too emotionally invested for my own good. Whether it be something I wanted, a friendship, or a relationship. I’ve never been afraid to jump the gun emotionally and start investing more of myself before the time is right. And time and time again, God humbles me and tells me to be more careful with my heart. To really consider what is going on and to give it prayerful thought and anticipation. Rather than be heartbroken repeatedly. How human of me but how perfectly does it exemplify my relationship with God. I need him and He wants me to realize it – if only I realized it more regularly and without the need for these big lessons.

I know that the perfect home is out there for our family. We aren’t looking for our forever home, we aren’t looking for absolute perfection, we are looking for a place to grow and learn in love. To make friends and family feel welcome and to live this abundant life. Although, as I keep thinking about our search and what we have endured thus far – I realize that we don’t need a house to have all of this. I already have it in my heart.

“His dwelling shall be glorious.” IS 11:10

 

Photo by Kate Love Photography

001 | inventory

So I’ve decided to be a bit of a copy cat here. Bridget has been taking stock of little happenings in her life for a good bit now and then the other day I saw Katrina posted something similar. I really like how this is a quick and easy way to inventory what is being appreciated at the time. So…here goes! Hopefully the first of many life-inventory posts to come.
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taken last night at our friend’s little engagement shindig
Making: a few crafts to decorate our home for fall + a little something for my nephew for Christmas. I have so many crafts on my docket right now and I want to do them all. I really need to get better about prioritizing and list making.
Drinking: way too much coffee, not enough water, really good beer that my husband picks out and a cuppa tea before I go to bed.

Reading: lots! and loving it! personal reading: MWF seeking BFF & Carry On Warrior and for a bookclub: Momnipotent
Wanting: sleep. my sweet cherup was up every 1.5-2 hours last night. we have been pulling some realllllly amazing 10-12 hour stretches and then the teeth started a-comin’… hopefully tonight will be a different story and we can go back to normal. I’m also wanting to figure out what my little family is going to wear for our annual photos with Kate on Sunday!
Listening: to Childish Gambino’s new music by way of my husband who has far better music taste than I do. any and all cool music I ever post is probably from him. also to my new favorite podcast – the girls next door!
Eating: oatmeal in the mornings, larabars (my favorite!), slow cooker lettuce wraps for dinner tonight, and trader joe’s salted caramel gelato for a sweet treat.
Smelling: the chicken for lettuce wraps cooking in the slow cooker and really wishing it were dinner time right now… I got these two scents from bath and body works last week to try out because I ran out of my favorite perfume last week and always have a hard time justifying it’s expense. Also, I got one of Bath and Body Works car air fresheners and have been smelling Leaves the past week. by far my favorite BBW scent!
Enjoying: the fact that my best friend from college + former roomie is ENGAGED. I’ve been keeping this secret for two months and I’m so happy it finally happened! she is seriously one of the best people I know and my heart is bursting for her.
Loving: that the holiday season is about to begin. from what I have always heard, holidays change when you have kids and I can already tell that I am way more excited. while I still have yet to decide on Madeline’s Halloween costume it makes me giddy to think that she is experiencing all of this for the very first time and that we get to experience it all for the very first time with her! I know, not a very novel concept but it’s the new parent in me.
Hoping: for lots of good in the coming months. we are making some big changes around here and I am feeling anxious and unsettled and really hope everything transitions smoothly and do what is best for our little family.
Feeling: consistently happy + joyful lately. which wasn’t the case for a few weeks so these are very, very welcomed feelings.
Wearing: the t-shirt I wore to work today and athletic shorts. I know, I know…I really should try my hand at fashion blogging. I’ll get on it soon, promise.
Noticing: how much stuff we have accumulated over the past few years and reeeeeeally wanting to purge a bit.
Bookmarking: good fall recipes and cozy clothes for cooler temperatures.

FAMILY | the sweet spot

It’s been a while since I last posted some family updates! I feel like we have finally hit the sweet spot in baby-land with our girl. These past few weeks have been (for the majority of the time) pretty nice and we are finally falling into a somewhat predictable napping schedule (do you hear the glorious hymns of angels singing? You better believe I do). Her demeanor has also just been really sweet lately – lots of smiles and giggles – especially for daddy. A few weeks ago we got home from church and she was in such a playful mood that I wasn’t ready to put her to bed. We sat on the couch making faces at each other and Eric joined in the fun towards the end. Yesterday morning she was so sweet and snuggly after waking up that we ended up hanging out just cuddling for a while in mommy and daddy’s bed. It was the sweetest.

I feel like these moments are what I really envisioned when we talked about starting our family. Lazy Saturday mornings and late night giggles. The really good stuff (obviously, who wants to think about 3am feedings and blowouts?).

Madeline just turned 5 months old last week. Where did those 5 months go? I really do feel like this is still all so new, but then again 5 months is a pretty good chunk of time. Those first two months are so blurry now with sleep deprivation and hormone surges muddling the vividness of early newborn memories. But I can still remember the feelings. Feeling helpless during the afternoons where there was just crying and no naps. The late nights where she would wake up every hour on the hour as a hungry little bear and worried that I wouldn’t be able to stay awake or have enough to feed her. How tiny her little chicken legs were compared to our healthy rolls we have started sporting.

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This past weekend we ventured down to New Orleans for yet another summer wedding. It was our first experience flying with a little one in tow and I can honestly say that no amount of blog-reading or Pinterest searching can prepare you for a flight with a baby. Our flight down to NOLA was smooth sailing in terms of Madeline. All of the slip ups we encountered were from the adult side of the travelers-Martin. On the return flight we fussed a little in the beginning and ended up passing out in Daddy’s lap. As far as helpful tips go,  I think flying at night & putting our girl in her jammies pre-flight helped because it made her more comfortable for the journey ahead.

Tonight we are going to get back into the regular swing of things with our youth group’s bible study starting back up. Last year our littlest one was only the size of a jumping bean and this year she is going to be joining in the fun and seeing the joy that youth ministry and involvement in the church has brought to our lives as a couple. I can’t wait to see our youth group kiddos – they challenge me and bring so much happiness to our lives. I can’t wait for our first round of prayers & praises with our girls!

I think that about sums up current happenings for us. It really is something else to have a little family. I know it isn’t always easy (flashback to last Thursday & yesterday when I experienced blowouts like no other – hello solid foods!) but it is pretty amazing to see our little girl grow and to watch my husband become such a fantastic daddy.

Happy Wednesday!

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2 years

I woke up around 6:00 this morning to feed our baby. I am by no means a morning person and I usually have a hard time matching her early bird demeanor at such an hour. But this morning I couldn’t help but smile. Because it’s August 4th and August 4th is my favorite day.

Two years ago today I was up around the same time. Staring at a hotel ceiling in New Orleans; waiting for the day to begin. Already filled to the brim with butterflies fluttering with a combination of nerves and excitement in my belly.

Three years ago today I went on a date with my boyfriend. We ate burgers, walked around a little park and talked about ordinary things. That is until the end of the evening when a guitar was busted out and sweet songs were sung and sparkly ring was slipped onto my left ring finger.

Can you see why I love August 4th?


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JRP1713Don’t even get me started on the reception. We were told by the staff at our reception hall that our wedding was by far one of the most entertaining and filled with dancing. I really don’t think there was a time that someone wasn’t on the dance floor. That day was filled with so much love and looking at our wedding pictures always makes me feel that. Love. Love from friends, from family, from everyone involved in starting our life together.

Some say that if you can survive planning a wedding together – you will have a great marriage. I can’t say that I disagree with that sentiment. Our engagement was filled with some challenges and I think that only made us more thankful and happy about this wonderful day. While in the grand scheme of things two years isn’t much…these past two years have been filled with so much life and learning. Learning how to live together, how to love each other better, how to throw a party for far too many people in a tiny apartment, what to do with a whiny dog in the middle of the night, and my favorite – learning how to be parents together. I mean really, we haven’t taken any of these past two years for granted and I don’t really want to slow down anytime soon. I can’t fathom sharing this life (or that special day) with anyone else.

Happy Anniversary, Eric Martin! You are the best, smartest, most bearded person I have ever known. I love you with all of my heart.

welcome to the club

Well, our little babe is a heathen no more! This past Sunday we welcomed Madeline into the club of Catholicism after the 5pm Teen Mass. While there were frustrations along the way in terms of planning out her baptism – everything turned out perfectly and we were so happy that we could schedule the sacrament after the Mass where we participate in music ministry. We wanted to make sure that not only would our families be able to witness her baptism but that all of our youth group teens and  band could see it too. Some of the youth have known us since we were engaged and a handful since we were dating so for them to witness our little girl become a part of the Body of Christ was some awesome, crazy, full circle, kind of stuff.

Let’s get this party started.

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I would just like to say that apparently our child was an absolute angel during Mass and even took a little cat nap pre-sacramental graces. During her moment of glory? Not so much. She was pretty worn out by baptism time and was over the matching lacy bonnet/pretty much everything ever. But because I’m more of a glass half-full type of person, her grumpiness could have been a whole lot worse and the really big cries didn’t happen until…

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Money shot. For a baby who adores a good bath we were not so into the ice-water forehead dousing of spiritual graces.

This girl is set in the godparent department. Her godmother is my college roommate, Kristen. The girl who has been a pivotal part of my personal spiritual life and fearlessly lead our Catholic group in college. I couldn’t imagine a better example for our little lady to look up to. Kristen is pretty great and can teach Madeline all about our Blessed Mother as well as the how-to’s of picking out a good bottle of wine. While her godfather couldn’t make it for the weekend (we missed you Ryan!) we were extremely thankful to have Eric’s brother stand in for him.

 

IMG_1366To give you a sense of how many people were there to support us on Sunday we snapped this little photo. We are framing this baby for sure. I really don’t think I’ve ever seen so many people attend a baptism and we are pretty much the luckiest to be a part of such an awesome community. So many teens stayed after mass to watch and between family, friends, and the band it was a pretty insane crowd. Talk about love!