On Saturday I turned 27. Recently, I’ve spent a lot of time thinking about what 26 looked like.This last year was a big one for our family. We added sweet baby Juniper to our lives, bought a house and Michael graduated from the qualification course to begin his new job within the military. Opie graduated from Occupational therapy AND speech therapy. We added two dogs to our household and a few chickens to our yard. Michael was gone a lot for work, so I figured out how to run our house in his absence and I gained a new confidence in our marriage. Even though he may be far away, we can be just as close and still in love as we are when he is home.

26 was full of love and adapting. I am so grateful for what my year of being 26 looked like. However, now that I’m starting a new year, I want to look towards the future.


I’m sure that for our family, this will be another big year. Opie will start soccer soon. Then after that is over, he will be doing flag football. Karate too. We have already started doing Pre-K schoolwork at home, and he loves it. Juniper will be walking any day and will be saying more and more words. Michael will be gone for work… A lot. As for me, this year will be HUGE. 

I recently started re-working the blog. If you follow it, you can see what I mean. I’m going to try to post more often about more things than my family. I want to post more about eating, cooking and shopping gluten free. I get so many messages asking for help from a family member or friend of someone who was recently diagnosed with Celiacs, but has no idea how to even begin with changing to a gluten free lifestyle. I want to help. It was daunting when we got Opie’s diagnosis. Who knew our soy sauce, taco seasoning or oatmeal had gluten? I sure didn’t. I’m hoping other people can learn from my trials and errors– Especially when it comes to cooking.

I’m still going to post family updates and posts about motherhood etc, but I specifically want to build up the ‘gluten free’ section of the blog.


TODAY I opened an etsy shop to sell my paintings. For a long time now, I have been painting water color paintings. I have a million more updates to do to the shop, listings of paintings to add, etc.. but I took the first step and I’m excited about it. I’m going to be adding oil paintings soon as well. Here is the link: Oilandwaterstudio



What made me decided to start selling them is that I need help funding the next bit of news I want to share…


I applied to yoga teacher training! I am nervous even just typing this out and sharing it here. It has been such a dream of mine to become a yoga instructor. I haven’t even shared that dream with more than a handful of friends until recently out of fear that it wouldn’t come true. I find out this week at a sit down with the coordinator if I am officially accepted (and more details about it), but what I do know is it starts January 28th, 2017 and that I can’t wait to start that journey (if I am accepted). I am jumping, no LEAPING out of my comfort zone this year.


I hope that I am successful in all that I am attempting and reaching for this year, and I hope that my kids see that chasing their dreams is always worth the effort. I don’t know exactly how I will work out every detail yet, but I know that I need to try as hard as I can, and hopefully everything will fall into place how it is supposed to. It always does.




For not being a writer, I have had an incredible case of writer’s block. I’ve had a hundred things to talk about, but no words to communicate them with. Life lately has been so full. Full of activities and chores and obligations. What is really full though, is my heart.

Opie and Juniper are in this new stage where they play together and look to eachother for affection. They are the first thing the other one wants to see each morning and they spend a few minutes snuggling each night at bedtime. Two days ago I put both kids down for naps in their own rooms. Once I knew they were asleep, I snuck out to the back yard to work on getting the pool ready for the season. A little while later, I came inside to check on them and I found Opie in her crib with about 15 of her toys. They were belly laughing and playing a tiny piano with their toes.

Standing there in the doorway I just wanted time to freeze. I took a moment to memorize the sight of it, and the sounds of their sweet laughter as quickly as I could. Soon, Opie saw me and asked if he was in trouble. I of course told him he was NOT in trouble, and that I was so thankful he was such a loving big brother. He beamed with pride. This all happened in maybe the span of 60 seconds, but it was the best 60 seconds of my day. Maybe my week. Not because my kids were happy, but because I was brought to the present and I was reminded just how grateful I should be for what I have.

Michael has been gone this week and will be gone a lot this next year. It’s not something any of us are ecstatic about. It’s hard to be apart, especially with young kids. I try not to get caught up in my feelings of missing him, or of being tired (both in general and of doing things by myself). If I did, Nobody would benefit. Instead, I try to keep Opie busy with activities and seeing his friends as often as possible. He still misses his daddy, but he’s not crying everyday like he used to when Michael would leave.

I’m still learning how to balance things on my own when Michael isn’t here. Sometimes I forget to pull the trash can to the curb, or to pick up land mines the dogs leave in the yard.. but for the most part, things are handled. This is becoming our new normal and I think we are all adjusting to it as well as we can. I am so lucky to be loved so well by friends and family, that definitely helps.

This post was all over the place, which is actually how I have been lately..so maybe it’s perfect? Opie is doing great in Karate and swim lessons (thanks nana), and Juniper is only up 1-2 times a night now. She’s mastered crawling and is now standing while only holding onto furniture with one hand. I have no doubt that she will be walking soon. This week was our in-out week, which just proves that time is going faster and faster.
Here are some random pictures!


I’m not sure where the last month and a half went! We’ve been pretty busy working in the yard outside. We put up a new fence around the rest of our backyard after our original fence blew over in a crazy storm. We also built a garden area with garden boxes and a fence around that to keep our dogs out. Then we got a pool safety fence put around the swimming pool. I guess “fences and fences and fences” could be the description of the last few weeks. I’ll share some pictures soon. I need to take some first. It was a lot of hard work doing everything ourselves. Well everything except the pool safety fence…That one we hired out because we couldn’t get the supplies. Also because we were tired of fences ha. It’s a relief knowing Opie and other children can go in our yard and play safely now. 250-300 children per year die in swimming pools. Insane. As he gets older and more independent wanting to play in the yard, it’s nice to be able to tell him “ok have fun!” And not have to watch him like a hawk outside. Obviously I keep an eye on him but I’m not having to be crazy about it now.

This weekend we are heading to SC for Michael’s sister’s wedding. It’s going to be a whirlwind trip for sure, but it’ll be great to see everyone and to celebrate the bride and groom.

Next week juniper has her 6 month checkup (only a month late) and Opie starts swimming lessons. So his new schedule will be karate twice a week and swimming twice a week. He just graduated from speech therapy so it’s exciting to be able to use our time doing new things.

Here are a few pictures from the last month!  My mom came for a weekend but we of course didn’t take any pictures. The only picture I have is this first picture. It really does show what her visit was like though. Opie had the best time getting to play with her.



Having a baby that is still nowhere near sleeping through the night is leaving me feeling pretty exhausted everyday and my brain isn’t functioning at full force. So instead of an eloquent blog post, I’m going to list things in random thought mode.

It’s been so cold here lately but today things finally warmed up a bit. It definitely makes us ready for summer. Or spring. As long as winter is gone. I think Opie just really wants to swim. I keep having to tell him he will turn into an Op-sicle (har har) if he swims right now.
Juniper will be SIX months old on March 1st. I’m still trying to wrap my head around it. I feel like time didn’t go quite this fast with Opie.  
We don’t have too much going on for the rest of February. Just karate lessons, dr appointments and me attempting to get back in shape. I should say that being in shape isn’t always getting to a certain size. To me being in shape is being able to jog to my car in the rain without struggling to catch my breath or being able to do, I don’t know.. Two push ups? I wasn’t able to workout during my pregnancy or right after because who wants to work out after having a c section? I do think that since it’s been about 6 months now though, that it’s time. Plus I’ll be honest, it would be nice to be a little firmer for swimsuit season that starts in April here. Nothing like waiting until the last minute;) With Michael gone on a work trip, it’s something to keep me occupied too.
Next year I have big plans and goals I’m wanting to work towards, so starting on them now is important. I’m really grateful to have a husband who is supportive and encouraging.
Here are some recent pictures: