what will you do today that will make you proud in a year?

happy new years eve everybody!
i feel like a broken record, but seriously… HOW can we be here again already?! today is definitely a day to celebrate around here! it marks NINE WHOLE YEARS of kissing the love of my life! yep, that’s right! nine years ago tonight, two young teens locked lips in a new years smooch that led us all the way to where we are now! it’s been the best road :) wouldn’t trade even a part of it. AND it is the last new years for a while that i will kiss ONLY one stud at midnight! next year, i have a feeling husband and i will both be adding a second smooch to our night… on one tiny little pair of smackers :)
anyways! i hope you all have a WONDERFUL night tonight! be safe & celebrate life!
I read something this morning that felt perfect for today and wanted to share it with you! It’s from “Grace for the Moment” by Max Lucado. enjoy! && happy new years eve! talk to you in 2013!
“each day…
it’s quiet. it’s early. my coffee is hot. the sky is still black. the world is still asleep. the day is coming. in a few moments the day will arrive. it will roar down the track with the rising of the sun. the stillness of the dawn will be exchanged for the noise of the day. the calm solitude will be replaced by the pounding pace of the human race. the refuge of the early morning will be invaded by decisions to be made & deadlines to be met.
for the next twelve hours i will be exposed to the day’s demands. it is now that i must make a choice. because of calvary, i’m free to choose. and so i choose.
i choose love…
no occasion justifies hatred; no injustice warrants bitterness. i choose love. today i will love God and what God loves.
i choose joy…
i will invite my God to be the God of circumstance. i will refuse the temptations to be cynical… the tool of the lazy thinker. i will refuse to see people as anything less than human beings, created by God. i will refuse to see any problem as anything less than an opportunity to see God.
i choose peace…
i will live forgiven. i will forgive so that i may live.
i choose patience…
i will overlook the inconveniences of the world. instead of cursing the one who takes my place, i’ll invite him to do so. rather than complain that the wait is too long, i will thank God for a moment to pray. instead of clinching my fist at new assignments, i will face them with joy and courage.
i choose kindness…
i will be kind to the poor, for they are alone. kind to the rich, for they are afraid. and kind to the unkind, for such is how God has treated me.
i choose goodness…
i will go without a dollar before i take a dishonest one. i will be overlooked before i will boast. i will confess before i will accuse. i choose goodness.
i choose faithfulness…
today i will keep my promises. my debtors will not regret their trust. my associates will not question my word. my husband(wife) will not question my love. and my children will never fear that their mother(father) will not come home.
i choose gentleness…
nothing is won by force. i choose to be gentle. if i raise my voice may it only be in praise. if i clench my fist, may it only be in prayer. if i make a demand, may it only be of myself.
i choose self-control…
i am a spiritual being… after this body is dead, my spirit will soar. i refuse to let what will rot, rule the eternal. i choose self-control. i will be drunk only by joy. i will be impassioned only by my faith. i will be influenced only by God. i will be taught only by Christ. i choose self-control.
Love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control. to these i commit my day. if i succeed, i will give thanks. if i fail, i will seek his grace. and then, when the day is done, i will place my head on my pillow and rest.”

6 weeks… left.

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yea, we are so close now that counting what’s left of this pregnancy takes less time than counting the weeks that i have had this little bundle in my belly. && ooooweeee, look at that belly! came out of no where it seems! for real… this week, i recycled an outfit a few days after it’s original debut (yea, it gets that way when your outfit choices are limited :)) and literally 4 days later it looked different. crazy. our boy is growing in there & it’s a good thing!
anyhow, i love him so much. he’s a cutie. i really hope he’s a mama’s boy… i hear that’s one of the best things about little boys… they usually are :)
… i won’t express that hope to husband though, we’ll keep it just between us.
happy friday!

toasted marshmallow martinis.

over Christmas weekend, we had an oh so addicting holiday beverage… toasted marshmallow martinis, yummm! i’ve been dreamin’ about them ever since! so yum, i couldn’t NOT share the recipe with y’all! i, obviously had the training wheels version (aka fancy chocolate milkshake ha! alcohol not included… probably how i’d prefer it on a regular day anyway!)
below is the recipe!
for any pregnant or non-drinking ladies, just nix the first 4 ingredients ;)
Toasted Marshmallow Martini
3/4 oz. Kahlua
3/4 oz. Bailey’s
3/4 oz. Disaronno
3/4 oz. Marshmallow Vodka
2 oz. Vanilla Ice Cream
1 oz. Milk or Half&Half
shake in martini shaker, & don’t forget to drizzle your glass with chocolate syrup!

a few snapshots from Christmas weekend.

hello there!
i hope y'all had the merriest of CHRISTmases!
we sure did!
mostly just enjoyed time spent with family, great food, & being thankful for ALL that the Lord has blessed us with, ESPECIALLY His Son.
it was a wonderful day! we hope yours was too! here are a few snapshots from here & there!

22 things you might not know...

1) she is currently watching the grinch.
2) he will eat just about anything.
3) we hope our baby is born on the 7th, so we will all be 7th babies.
4) her favorite colors are teal, mint, yellow & purple.
5) his favorite christmas song is 'sleigh ride' by fun.
6) hers is all of the 'home for christmas' amy grant cd.. (oh the nostalgia of my childhood)
7) she has long hair. 
8) we will have all of our belongings in one place for the FIRST time ever since we've been married (May 2010) come january 12th!
9) his "holiday" drink of choice is a gingeronno.
10) so is hers... (when not "with child" obviously)
11) we are celebrating our NINE year anniversary on january 9, 2013. whoa.
12) she thinks there is no better man than him.
13) he is good at everything he tries.
14) we love to laugh a lot.
15) she has two sisters.
16) he does too.
17) we are big fans of life around here. life is pretty wonderful.
18) she, in this exact moment, feels like her baby is trying to break out of her tummy from all directions! (thankful & ouch all at the same time)
19) we have love affairs with both five guys && smashburger... i mean a good burger really could be the key to happiness.
20) he is her forever.
 21) she is his too.
22) we think we've named our child... we think.

...happy saturday!

other things you might not know HERE!

merry christmas weekend!

it's friday!
AND the friday before CHRISTmas!
hope yours is a happy one!
we are supposed to get snow around these parts over the weekend and i am THRILLED! we will be doing a lot of cozy-ing up and i'm not mad about it. snuggling with husband, a tree in the corner, christmas movies & some christmasy treats... sort of my idea of the best time you could have. call me an old lady, but i just don't think it gets much better than that.
what are YOU doing the last weekend before CHRISTmas?!

dear baby...

baby boy, 
i've loved you for 32 weeks & a couple days now...
i can't believe how big you are getting & how soon you are going to be here!
the way time has flown by so far, i can only imagine how quickly these next 7 & a half weeks are going to go.
then we meet you!
you'll actually be in our arms.
warm, soft, with a fuzzy little head... smelling soooo good, perfect in every way.
me & daddy canNOT wait! we talk about it every night before bed :)
you are going to change our lives forever.
i'm going to go ahead and thank you ahead of time for making them THAT much better.
i love you, 
being sick & then being in the hospital... having surgery... 
if i didn't already know that i loved our little guy SO much, our experience over the past two weeks definitely made it known. 
worrying about HIM before ME.
thinking, 'no... that isn't okay with me' when the doctors told us that both baby and i were their priority, but that i would take rank over him if it came down to it...
it was a feeling i had never experienced before. 
i can't really even describe it, only that he was everything to me in that moment and MY first priority.
he's so sweet & perfect in there. i am so thankful for how strong he is, how lively. gah!
i also REEEALLY can't wait to see what he looks like! as of now, i picture a miniature, bald, old man version of husband. hahaha! just sayin'...

we got a tree topper...

a few nights ago, we decorated our THIRD married CHRISTmas tree! so exciting. i love CHRISTmas & CHRISTmas trees are sooooo magical! i could honestly sit in a dark room with a lit tree in the corner & feel so much joy & peace. 
what was even MORE exciting this year though, was that we finally got a tree topper! ha! it was about time! one of the vendors at the shop brought it in a few weeks ago & as soon as i saw it i had every intention of buying it. i mean, it is a penguin tree topper, and if you've been around here for a minute, you know we love penguins & why
so perfect.
...but then we had our hospital fiasco & when i went to visit the shop & claim my cutie little tree topper it was gone...
lucky me though, i have the best mom in the world and as soon as SHE saw it come in, she too, knew we must have it at the top of our tree this year & for years to come! so she surprised me with it. yay! so we have a twinkly little tree lighting up our room, complete with topper and all!
happy 8 sleeps 'til CHRISTmas friends!

love letters on a saturday.

dear CHRISTmas, 
slow downnnnnn. there are only 10 more sleeps until your arrival & i'm not ready for it to be here & over just yet!

dear God,
thank you for every little & big thing in  my life. i don't deserve all of the blessings you have given me, but i am very very thankful. i love you.

dear baby boy in my tum,
as always, i love you.  thank you for giving me kicks & love nudges 11,758 a day to remind me that you can't wait to meet me & your daddy as much as we can't wait to meet you!

dear dreams,
thank you for being big & exciting my soul.  what in the world would i do without you?

dear starbucks,
thank you for making delicious & cozy beverages for those of us who simply just do not like the taste of coffee. peppermint hot chocolate? why are you so awesome?

dear michael buble holiday pandora,
you're great.

dear belly, 
please hurry up & heal. i'd like to be able to laugh, cough, drive & generally just move well sometime in the near future! thanks :)

dear jeggings,
thank you for continuing to button around my ever growing bump. you really know how to treat a girl. 

dear pinterest, 
i'm so glad we have had the chance to seriously reunite this week! you are making dreaming a whole lot more fun & i can't wait to see so many of our  pins come to life!

dear sugary & sweet treats,
remove yourself from my sight or you WILL be eaten. 

dear readers, 
i hope you are having the best of saturdays. you deserve it. smile. hug someone.  thank God. sing a CHRISTmas song & spread cheer wherever you go today!


read more love letters here :)

we are moving!

after searching & searching, not being ready, being disappointed, things falling through, etc.... AS USUAL, God knew what He was doing & had a better plan :)
we finally found a home!
isn't it precious?!?!
gah! we love it!
it's everything we wanted but way more!
since the first time i visited fort collins, the adorable houses in old town stole my heart! cozy, cute, unique, vintage... perfection in my eyes :)
what do i love even more about OUR house though?! it has the look & feel of old town, but it's on an acre, RIGHT by the lake with a mountain view & has a cuuuuutie address!
yea the pictures below... from our yard. NOT COMPLAINING.
we are SO very excited!
we move in in early January!
finally, a house to make a home! a place to decorate & have all of our things in one place for the FIRST time since we've been married! a place to host our friends & family! snuggle on our couch together, and SO exciting... a place to bring our baby home to!
the Lord has seriously answered so many of our prayers over the past week & really just lined things up for us in a way that has been undeniable. i, for one, am incredibly thankful! i just feel like after so much of our lives being up in the air & at times unclear, it is all finally settling & unraveling as it should.
Praise you Lord.
anyhoooo! i am absoLUTELY going to post pictures & do a little home tour once we are moved in & settled! for now though, here's a little preview of the outside!
happy friday!

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it’s beginning to look a lot like… a baby around here!

you guys…
our baby stuff was delivered this past week & i’m not going to lie… it felt a little bit like Christmas came early! seems silly, because it’s just “stuff” AAAAND it’s not even for me haha, it’s for baby! but, it just made it more real & got us even more excited for his arrival! not to mention… seeing husband put together a stroller & previewing the ‘daddy’ version of him was oh so cute :)
anyways… happy day!

our week at the hospital.

so we spent last week in the hospital...
as many of you know, i had not been feeling well the past few weeks & had already had one trip to the hospital to try and get things figured out. they prescribed reflux medication & it seemed to help a little (aka i wasn't seeing my food a second time around) but i was still having major discomfort & pain. last monday night i woke up in excruciating stomach & back pain & was not able get it under control, so chris rushed me to the hospital. after two and a half days of being the "question mark case", some poking and prodding, medications & iv fluids, a scope & an MRI they finally figured it out.
it's a little bit hard to explain & i definitely don't remember all of the doctor lingo, but the short version is that a part of my intestines had coiled up on themselves & were blocking food/digestion & blood flow almost completely. they said that it was probably something that had happened while i was forming in my mom's belly & that it hadn't been much of a problem in life, but now that MY baby is getting bigger, he was pressing up on them making it worse & as they said 'life threatening' for both baby and i. they rushed me into emergency surgery within an hour of finding this out, because they said they didn't know how long it had been this bad & that if they didn't fix it, part of my intestines could actually die, rupture, go into sepsis & so on... NOT GOOD. they said that this surgery is normally a simple & easy one, but because of the pregnancy, would be very complicated. they were able to go in, work around baby, un-twist them, pin them how they are supposed to be & thankfully nothing had died so nothing had to be removed. so i am all better now!
i won't lie. it was super scary.
before last week i had never even had an IV. i haven't even had my wisdom teeth out.
since then, i've had about a billion IVs, been under anesthesia TWICE, had TWO epidurals, AND had a major & emergency surgery... on my abdomen... while pregnant.
i strangely feel super brave & kind of like a warrior now :)
i would also like to mention how great our baby is too. he was such a trooper throughout the entire week! strong heartbeat & completely perfect in there. we appreciated this ALOT, because during all of the chaos it was one thing we didn't have to worry about in a way, because as far as he went, it was like nothing had changed... we were chillin' on the couch watching a Christmas movie.
i would have liked that as well :)
he is still being a good boy too! one of the risks of the surgery was that there was a big chance we could have met him sooner... like THAT day, which would have been 9 weeks early. Because they'd be operating around him, it could have upset his home & sent me into preterm labor & although he could have been okay, it would not have been ideal. they put me on a medication that slows contractions & after a few days said we were in the clear. they are keeping me on it until he does come, which will hopefully not be until february!
aaaaanywayyyy... i stayed in the hospital for a week & then finally got to come home this past monday! i am doing good, just recovering from surgery & resting a lot. oh! and i can eat again!! woohooo! i would not say that it was the best week of my life, but am so thankful that God was there the whole time. He was with the doctors as they figured out what was wrong, with them while they operated, protected our baby in situations that could have been harmful for him, and stood by chris & i & our family while we were afraid. i also feel like God knew how nervous i was for delivery & He gave me a preview of a lot of things that most people don't get to see beforehand! After the week we had, I feel SO much less nervous for February.
one of the biggest things i am grateful for is Chris & my family & friends. in case i had forgotten... i honestly felt SO loved & cared for this past week. prayers & texts. visits at the hospital, flowers & gifts.  and so on & on. i am SO blessed and SO loved by so many. I am SO thankful for that. 
and husband... i feel like our marriage literally stepped up to a-whole-nother level. he was the best care giver i could have ever asked for. he never left my side & i could feel his love for me in a completely different way than ever before. i am so blessed to be his wife & thankful for the view God gave me of chris, our love & our marriage. i hope he's never in a situation like i was, but i pray that if he is, i can be as amazing for him as he was for me. 

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standing up for the first time since surgery (above)
(below) FINALLY allowed food!! my choice? surprise, surprise… pizza :)
putting together little thank you gifts for all of the sweet sweet nurses who took care of us during our stay!
finally home with my two favorite ears… & all is right in my world
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