Thursday, February 28, 2013

Life Through the Len// Self Portraits

Just a couple of self portraits and a quick baby update:

Baby Max and I are growing and growing. He is measuring right on schedule! Not too big and not too small. Good Boy! I haven't stopped having Braxton Hicks contractions for a while now. I guess that's normal though. I keep worrying that he may be coming early, but I am hoping he will stay put as long as possible so that he can have all the time he needs to develop and grow. We have about 11 weeks to go until his due date--seems like both a long and short time away. I failed my first Gestational Diabetes test, so I am going in for the longer three hour test early next week. Here's hoping both the test and its results are better than the first round. Most of my pre-pregnancy health symptoms have been flaring up lately, but I am just so grateful that I can be carrying a healthy baby in spite of them. He is truly a little miracle!

We can't wait to meet our little boy!

Wednesday, February 27, 2013

Life Through the Lens// Daydreaming

Last year around this time we had our tickets booked for Disneyland and we were happily counting down the days until May 18th--the day we would set off for a sunny California adventure. This year we're anxiously looking forward to May 18th again, but for a much bigger adventure; one that holds a lot more excitement, nervousness, and anticipation--Max's due date. Obviously, the day may come a little sooner or later than that, but for now, it's the spot circled in red on our calendars.

Since sleep is hard to come by these days, I often find myself laying awake, daydreaming about what's ahead. The details are all a bit fuzzy... What will delivery be like? What will Mr M. look like? Where will we bring him home to? Though there are many unknowns, the important parts of the daydream are all there. We are going to love our little boy so much! I can just picture us all together, Dolly included, looking lovingly at little Max. I don't think I'll be able to stop looking at him, taking his picture, smiling, or crying when he is finally here.

Though I enjoy daydreaming about far off places like the streets of Paris or a sunny tropical beach, just picturing our little family at home together is the best kind of daydream.


Monday, February 25, 2013

Scrapbooking// Your Story from A-Z

I wanted to create a cute baby album ahead of time for Max. Something I can easily slip photos in and jot down stories while they are fresh on my mind. I've been holding on to this vintage dictionary for a while now, and it seemed like a cute base for an album. Since I want the book to open and close without a lot of bulk, I've kept the embellishing simple--lots of layered cards, washi tape, and paper products. Cute and simple. I can't wait to finish the book and have photos to add in!

Supplies used:
Patterned Paper: Echo Park, American Crafts Dear Lizzy Charmed Collection, American Crafts Amy Tangerine Yes Please; Tags: American Crafts; Washi Tape: American Crafts and Target; Wood Veneer: Studio Calico; Thickers: American Crafts; Letter Stickers: Cosmo Cricket and Jilibean Soup; Vintage library cards and pockets; Vintage Dictonary; Tim Holtz Distressing Ink

Thanks for Looking!


Friday, February 22, 2013

Life Through the Lens// Cousins

I can't wait for these two little loves to meet their cousin Max in the Spring. I hope they become the best of friends. I'm anxious to take photos of all the littles outside in the warm weather! The snow is pretty, and I've gotten better at indoor photos, but I really like shooting outdoors in the sunshine best... Just letting the kids and Dolly run and play, enjoying the sunshine, and snapping photos of everyone having fun together. It's my kind of happy. I realize Max won't be running around for a while, but I'm sure it won't be long until he is keeping right up to speed with his cousins. Oh the adventures that await!


Wednesday, February 20, 2013

Around Here

Just a quick happy shot of Miss Dolly enjoying the snow. I love this photo! She looks so happy and cute! I love her so much!

We've been busy getting lots of things done around here.

Dolly has been busy taking naps, chewing on bones, and saving up energy for her daily run in the snow.

Danny has been busy working long hours during the day and doing things for his Bishopric calling in the evenings and on the weekends. I'm so grateful for his hard work and willingness to serve others!

Max has been very busy growing, kicking, sleeping, and having the hiccups. He is an active and happy little bug!

I've been busy with lots of scrapbooking work, trying to organize and de-junk our home, and preparing for Max to join us in less than three months.

Oh... and we found a home that we absolutely LOVE! We put an offer in and are back in the waiting game again. Not sure what will happen, but hopeful things will work out!


Friday, February 15, 2013

Life Through the Lens// Chinese Gardens

Just a few pretty shots from the Chinese gardens at the Bellagio in Las Vegas. I've always loved the Asian culture... it reminds me of home. There's a lot of beautiful Asian inspired artwork and decor in my parents home, much of it inherited from my Nana and Papa. Dad served a mission in Hong Kong in the 1960's and Nana and Papa visited many Asian countries in their travels. I just loved every bit of these beautiful gardens! It was seriously a tranquil environment even amidst the crowds of people passing through. Simply lovely.

Gong Hey Fat Choy! Happy Chinese New Year!!  (2013 is the year of the snake--I hate snakes, but I'm sure it will still be a great year.)


Tuesday, February 12, 2013

Life Through the Lens// Papa and His Boy

Before Christmas my family rode the Front Runner train to Salt Lake City to see the lights. It was quite the adventure! Turns out everyone in Utah County had the same idea that evening--which meant for a very full train without enough seats to go around. We were left standing for quite a while, and very grateful when seats finally became available. Little Lincoln quickly fell asleep in Papa's arms. Papa knows just how to rock the littles to sleep. He's and expert! I love seeing my parents as grandparents. They love their grandkids so much! They even adore Miss Dolly and spoil her like a grandchild--Dad calls her his "grand-dogger." I can't wait for Max to meet his Nana and Papa soon! He is so lucky to have so many people who already love him and are anxious to meet him!


Monday, February 11, 2013

Scrapbooking// Just 2 of Us

Photo by Photography by McKenzie
Just another happy page to share... I've been taking advantage of cold weather and sick days by getting some of our "just us" photos scrapped. We have so many photos of our adventures over the last five years--and I'm pretty behind on documenting them all. (insert plug for Project Life here.)

For a couple of years it was just Danny and I--those were the dating years. Pretty soon after we were married, our little Dolly puppy made three. [I REALLY need a photo of just the two of us with Miss Dolly to show what the last three years have looked like.] Now our little family is growing, and I can't wait for pictures and pages of all of us together!

Be back soon with lots of Project Life catch up.

Supplies Used:

Cardstock: Bazzill Basics// Patterned paper: American Crafts, Crate Paper, CTMH, Pink Paislee, Teresa Collins Designs// Pebbles Inc, My Minds Eye// Washi Tape: American Crafts// Brads: CTMH// Butterfly Punch: Fiskars// Ribbon: American Crafts// Letter Stickers: CTMH// Distress Ink: Tim Holz// Glitter: Martha Stewart Crafts// Double Stick Tape// Buttons// Thread


Life Through the Lens// Bellagio Fountains

Just a few sunny snapshots from our recent trip to Las Vegas. Danny was busy working for the majority of the trip, but we ventured out for a short walk to see the Bellagio water show and enjoy the sunshine. Danny has been pretty busy with work and church responsibilities lately, so I really treasure those moments when we can just spend time together and relax. It's so strange to think that this short afternoon walk was probably one of our last little adventures with just the two of us... well, sort of. Max was there with us, but next time we venture out for a sunny afternoon walk, he'll likely be in a stroller instead!

I'm so happy to note that these photos are already printed and tucked away in my Project Life album. I printed up a few doubles to make traditional pages with as well. I'll be back later with pages to share!


Friday, February 8, 2013

Soundtrack to My Life// You're Gonna Miss This

This morning the snow started falling again. My first thought was to recheck the calendar and count the days til spring. Knowing that counting days only makes me anxious and unhappy, I said a prayer for help to embrace this season with greater patience. Thoughts came piling upon thoughts in response to my prayer. I could just see the seasons of life swiftly coming and going--in my mind, I watched my little Max go from taking his first steps to serving a mission and marriage... I think my mother heart just grew a hundred fold. "Slow down!" I thought, as I pondered on glimpses of what's to come. Suddenly three months time seems so painfully short. For right now, he is just mine... and I'm going to try and embrace every moment of this special time.

What a beautiful answer to my prayer for patience.


Wednesday, February 6, 2013

Sharing My Story// Speaking Up

"The struggle is part of the story." I saw that quote on Pinterest the other day and it has really resonated with me. Sometimes in scrapbooking and blogging it's easy to edit out the messy bits, and only show the happily ever after moments... but those don't mean as much without the story behind them.

I've been silent about some things for a while, and like being stuck inside during this long cold winter, you can only keep things in for so long before they just have to get out. The cold weather and my ongoing battle with a weakened immune system have really been wearing on me. I haven't talked openly about my struggles with chronic illness for some time... I was meanly accused of making it all up for attention. Nothing could have been more embarrassing, hurtful, or false.

I've spent the last several years trying to adapt to a body that doesn't allow me to do as much as I would like. A body that catches every cold and virus it comes in contact with. A body that doesn't digest food properly, and struggles to absorb nutrients. A body that hurts most of the time. I'm not trying to complain or seeking anyones attention or pity, just speaking up about a part of my life that is real and challenging.  

Given all that I've gone through over the last several years, this pregnancy has truly been a miracle, and I've been amazed with all that my body has been capable of doing. I'm not one of those girls who can do everything; I have a lot of limitations, and that can be discouraging. Thinking about all the changes that are ahead can be really scary as I wonder how I will ever manage to do it all. I look to my sweet mother for assurance that things will be okay. She raised five great kids, even with limited physical abilities. Her ability to love and nurture was never diminished by any physical weakness. I'm working hard to take good care of myself and my little Max as we prepare for his arrival in May. Right now that means the floors are a bit dingy, the windows need washing, and the dishes and laundry wait their turn until I have the energy to get to them.

There aren't adequate words to express how grateful I am for the miracle of this little boy, and for a body that is working hard to carry him. I'm anxiously looking forward to getting over the ongoing colds and viruses that I've been fighting. I'm longing for the sunshine and rejuvination that Spring always brings. Nevertheless, I am trying to embrace this time for what it is, listening to my body, and slowing down--even though it feels like a snail's pace.

I think these are important parts of our story, and overlooking them would deny the sacrifices, miracles, and blessings of this special time in our lives.


Monday, February 4, 2013

Life Through the Lens// February

Ignore my messy window. Happy February! Here's hoping I get over this nasty cold that has been lingering for over 6 weeks now. Here's hoping the sun makes an appearance daily. Here's hoping my little family will be happy and feel loved everyday.


Saturday, February 2, 2013

Scrapbooking// My Sweetheart

This page was fun for me to create! There's a lot going on, but I think it still works. I like the colors, texture, and dimension. The title comes from the song "Ho Hey" by the Lumineers... it's been in my head all week, and it went perfectly with the theme.

Supplies Used:

Cardstock: Bazille Basics// Patterned paper: Crate Paper, American Crafts, Teresa Collins Designs, My Minds Eye, CTMH, Echo Park// Thickers: American Crafts// Letter Stickers: Jillibean Soup// Butterfly punch: Fiskars// Date Stamp: Dear Lizzy for American Crafts// Washi Tape: American Crafts// Spray Mist: Studio Calico// Brads: CTMH// Pearls: CTMH// Doilie// Typewriter