29 and feelin’ fine!

bday

It’s my last year in my 20’s and I couldn’t be happier!  I have one more year to do all of those things that I promised I would do by the time I am thirty.

The thing is – not many of those things seem to matter anymore!  I am the happiest I have ever been.  I am close to my family, my best friends, and my man 😉  I love my job, my home, and my terrible dog.  I feel good about myself, and worry less about impressing people – so that check list has faded away!

Here’s to another year- the happiest year yet!

 

XoXo – Birthday Girl !

Advertisements

Favorite 4 Instagram Follows:

1) scratchmadesimple-call me partial, but this beautiful momma was one of my best friends growing up. We may have lost touch throughout the years but I love keeping up with her and her family through photos. Not only is Laura an amazing wife and mommy, she also owns a successful cupcake bakery and hosts a cooking show. She is a true inspiration and proves that with hard work anyone can achieve their dreams

2) mariaquaranta40-Maria is an amazing business owner, momma, and unofficial 5andwhine photographer! This lady does it all and is great at it. I love her #mondaymommytip; she always offers great advice and shares her favorite baby and mommy products.

3) freeyourmindphoto-Kari is an amazing photographer and excellent momma! I love seeing her photos pop on my feed; her kids are adorable and she is always doing something fun. Did I mention she is an amazing photographer?…Kari did our family photos this year and I am still in love with them.

4) careymbender-although I don’t know Carey personally, but I love following her. She has amazing style and posts the best inspirational quotes, and her daughter is absolutely adorable! Carey is truly an inspiring and beautiful woman inside and out!

Summer Movie Wish List!

With the official start of summer happening this past Sunday.  I am keeping my eyes and ears open for all the latest movie releases.  This is a great way to spend a rainy weekend or duck in to beat the heat.  I always try to hit the theater during matinee times.  Unless it’s a special date night we normally go in the early afternoon (like senior citizens).  The tickets are much cheaper and you have your pick of pretty much any seat.

Here is my list of the top 5 movies to see this Summer!

1. Minions – I love these little guys!! They are just too adorable.  Now that they are the stars of their very own movie I have to make this one of my animated movies to watch!  Release date July 10th, 2015.

2. Jurassic World – For any kids growing up in the early 90’s Jurassic Park was a staple.  I am most looking forward to see how Chris Pratt will play into this story line.  Released on June 12th, 2015.

3. Inside Out – Another animated flick with a lot of adult undertones.  Really looking forward to seeing this which is rated very highly on the animated scale in terms of being appealing to adults.  Released on June 19th, 2015.

4. Mad Max: Fury Road – Not sure if this is still out in theaters but the whole Charlize Theron in a post apocolyptic world sounds pretty awesome. Released on May 15th, 2015.

5. A LEGO Brickumentary – No movie list is complete with out the Lego documentary.  We’ve all seen the Lego movie now see how the phenomenon keeps on going and going.  Release date is July 31, 2015.  Check out the trailer here.

Summer Breastfeeding Fashion

On a recent shopping trip, I was on a mission to find some cute, breastfeeding-friendly pieces to add to my summer wardrobe. I had only a short window of time between feedings, but I’m happy with the few items I found. 🙂

This romper is perfect for summer! It’s trendy and the buttons down the front make it easy to breastfeed on-the-go.

I love the tassels on this tank top! Super cute! The fabric is also breathable for the hot summer weather.

This figure flattering top is a great way to hide those lingering pregnancy pounds.  It comes in a variety of colors, but I found that it runs on the larger size (I bought an x-small).

As I was walking to the dressing room, I spotted this dress in the juniors section.  The stretchy fabric and long straps make this very breastfeeding-friendly.

The Loft did not disappoint me with this adorable top!  Plus, the black and white pattern can easily be dressed up with a pair of white capris and heels.

This 3/4 sleeve top is great for cool summer nights.  I opted for the blue top, but it’s also available in yellow.

Do you have any favorite summer tops or dresses?  I’d love to find some additional pieces to add to my collection!

Baby Estime is almost here!

It is a 5andwhine tradition to honor the mothers-to-be a week leading to their baby shower.  Although my baby sister is not a veteran 5andwhiner – she is still the love of my life.   As we are just days away from celebrating her and welcoming her first child I can not help but reflect on what an amazing women she is.    She has dedicated her life to spreading the gospel and serving others.  What more of a role model can you ask a mother to be?

Being as I was lucky to have been my baby sisters Maid of Honor – I have already once had to find the words to describe my lovely angel of a sister.   Below is my “MOH” speech to remind my dear sister of how beautiful she is and how naturally prepared she is to be a mother.

Good Evening! For those of you who don’t know me, Im Rachel, the very proud older sister of this very beautiful Bride. I want to start by congratulating Stevana and Zachary, and also by thanking all of you for coming here today. I especially want to thank the friends and bridesmaid that had such a huge hand in making today perfect… Not only Stevie’s friends came together as a team, but mothers, fathers, boyfriends and husbands who lent a hand to give a girl the wedding of her dreams, so thank you for that

I would like to Say one thing before I go on. Zachary, I want you to know that in every hug and handshake you exchange tonight you will know the presence and love of your father, and mine.
It is a blessing to be a part of this celebration,  and also my duty as big sister and maid of honor to jump immediately into an embarrassing story about my little sister:

And so it starts, Stevana Morris circa 1999 types a letter, as follows…

I’m Running away from home and I’m taking dogs with me.

And off she went, and maybe with the dogs.

And she trekked, and she made it allllll the way to turkey hill… For those of you who may not know, that is less than a quarter mile from our house. And then she returned. To be honest, I don’t know if she actually took the dogs, or how long she was gone. Because we only actually found the note saved on the computer weeks later and Stevana denied the entire activity until half way through our adult lives. There is one thing I do know undoubtedly, and that is that she most definitely had her blanket duo dragging behind her. Like Linus from the peanuts cartoon, Stevie drug her feet, sucked her thumb, and pulled two small blankets everywhere she went. One modestly known as blankey, and the other for which we have no understanding was known as coom. The coom was some kind of toxic waste reminiscence of what was once a sweet yellow quilt. Stevie would cry mercifully if we would attempt to leave the humiliating carcass at home to avoid scoffs from strangers. We don’t know why entirely that Stevie loved coom and blankey so much… But I do know it has something to do with her undying loyalty and love to the things and the people closest to her.

Stevie has prided her life on these qualities, and because of that I have developed the deepest love and respect and care for my baby sister. It weighs heavy on my family how deeply we care for Stevana, so introducing the thought of sharing her with a man scared us, or me, to the core. I always wondered Who could possibly be worthy of someone so good?

And only months ago, and in only about thirty minutes of spending time with Zachary did I know in my heart that if there is someone who is as pure and kind as Stevie. That this is that man. At our first dinner Zachary shared with me stories of his family, his time with mine, and his future plans with my sister, which are to care for her, and to be a leader in change and a leader in spreading Gods word. There is a way about him that warms me. I guess it’s the way he speaks with the same love and loyalty my sister does. Plus he’s willing to shake his hips all over michaels crafts with me in attempts to get on Stevie’s nerves!
I look at the two of you and think you are an inspiration. what a beautiful love story… Separately you gave your hearts to God, and so he rewarded you with love, and with that love you took it out to share with the world, not only with your family but to those who don’t have enough family to love them back:  and for that God rewarded you with each other.

Stevie my angel, and Zachary my brother; I believe in the mission that you two have dedicated your lives. I believe in your marriage and I love you both. I am proud to be your family. And I know that everyone in this room shares that same encouragement and trust.

So please join me in lifting your hearts or your glasses; I have one small challenge for you …A great writer once said the secret to his love was simply this and I wish it to you both..which I will share first in my brothers native tongue…
Do joo la meh, ah vek you nah moo, capreese pah see la moo (phonetically spelled!) – Repeat in English :
Always love with a love that is more than love !
To Stevie and Zach !!

stevie3 stevie4 stevie7

stevieANDi StevieANDi2 stevieANDi3 stevieANDi4
I love you SO much Stevie and I can not wait to celebrate with you this weekend !

Father’s Day Footprint Project

Since Miles John was born on June 12, it didn’t leave me much time to prepare anything extravagant for Lance’s first Father’s Day.  I mean….I did give him a child, but I felt like he deserved a little token of my appreciation in advance for all the things he would do for Miles this year.

So, I saw a footprint idea on Pinterest, but it was super expensive to have someone from Etsy copy your child’s scanned-footprint.  I decided to make something on my own with the same sentiment with a picture of Miles, his footprints, name and date of birth.

Since I just had a c-section, I couldn’t make it around the craft store, so I called ahead and made sure they had the supplies I wanted.  The lady who worked there even put things into a shopping cart for Lance so he wouldn’t have to wander around.   I also ordered the pictures online from Target so Lance could just pick them up.

This is what we bought:  printed a few pics of miles, finger paints ( I don’t recommend this.  We are just worried first-time parents.  Ink would work way better), card stock, sticker letters, picture frames.

20150620_170800

We took the finger paints and put it on Miles’ feet and did our best to get it on the card stock.  It was hard because he was crying and trying to move his feet the entire time.   Hint for next time: do it when babe is asleep.

20150620_202729

I added Miles’ first and middle name and the date he was born with stickers.

I taped on some pictures after I added a little paint border.

20150620_213823

I put it in the frame and made one for Lance and one for his dad, Miles’ Grandpa!

20150620_214925

On Father’s Day, Lance and his dad got these personalized, one-of-a-kind, sentimental gifts and they were fun to make!  To top things off, we dressed Miles in a few Daddy and Grandpa onesies throughout the day to keep the Father’s Day theme!  It’s not hard to go through multiple onesies in a day with a newborn!

20150621_122337

#currentmood

With summer right around the corner I have been feeling the incredible urge to try all the new trends!  I fully believe in trying something especially if it’s a great price and if it suit’s your body type.  Here is a list of my top five trends to try this summer!  

1. ANYTHING AND EVERYTHING Palm tree print – I have become full on obsessed with palm tree print anything.  I am automatically drawn to it, whether it’s home decor or a fashion piece.  I picked up this sarong from HM to try for our vacation.  I think a little bit might be better than over load (i.e. all over palm tree print romper was not the best fit for me)!

sarong

2. Tassel necklaces – I have been dying to get my hands on a bright and cheery one to go with white or ivory.  I have been eyeing up a few pieces on lisespieces.com and they range in price but are all very reasonable I figure I could get a few!

3, Peasant tops/dresses – I have been seeing a ton of off the shoulder looks lately.  Whether it’s in dress form or tops, this gauzy bohemian look is right up my alley in the comfort department.  For the summer I am always looking for breezy comfortable items that are not going to stick to me.

freep

4. Lace up sandals in flat or heel form- I love the high lace up look on my most favorite celebs (aka Kourtney K) but in all reality that would look not so great on me.  I found this pair at Target last time I was there but ended up getting another pair instead and that day I couldn’t justify buying two pairs with a laundry list of other items to get.   I do think I will make a trip back because it has a very slight wedge and I think it would be nice for work and play.

5. Oval nails – I’m not talking Lady Gaga status or anything like that but the oval nail trend has been going strong and with all my favorite lighter colors coming in gel polish’s now I really want to try this nail trend at least once.  I tried shaping my own nails at home and it did not work out too well.  Again, I’m thinking about right before vacation, anything goes right?

74e0e9fa1c083ed0285af669dabd14c3

 

What are you dying to try this summer??! 

Chop, chop 

Last week I promised a full run-down of the breastfeeding-friendly clothing I recently purchased, but you’ll have to wait one more week because today I’m talking about something totally different, hair. 

Yesterday I took the plunge and chopped off my hair.  This is the third time I’ve donated my hair to the Pantene Beautiful Lengths program. In case your aren’t familiar, it’s an organization that works in partnership with the American Cancer Society. Together, they create FREE wigs for women and children who have lost their hair as a result of cancer treatments.  

I’ve been growing my hair out for months to meet the 8″ requirement for the program. Here is a before picture of my long hair…

   
 

The morning of my appointment, I washed and dried my hair.  Once I got to the salon, my hairdresser measure out 8+ inches and divided my hair into 3 sections…

 Three cuts later and my hair was ready to be donated! 

 

  I wanted to try something different this time and had my hair highlighted. If you plan to donate your hair, check to make sure colored hair will be accepted. I don’t plan to donate my hair in the near future so it seemed like a good time to try something different. 


Two hours later, here is the end result and I couldn’t be happier!  🙂

   

PS- if you’re in the South Central PA area and are looking for a new salon, I HIGHLY recommend Bristle and Prim! Dana is always so welcoming and gives the best haircuts!

Little Box of Sun Shine

A week or so ago Michael was having a high pressure week at work.  Our at home schedule was pretty chalked full as well with a weekend of hosting in front of us.  I wanted to help relieve the stress and made him this ‘little box of sunshine!’  I spent no more than $10.00 and less than 20 minutes running to the stores to grab a few gifts to remind him that even on a bad dark day (or week, or month) he is the center of my world and deserves every second of my time trying to cheer him up.

 

IMG_3921

Just a few things that matched the sunshine theme like a Lemon Bar and a Lemon Cocktail. An old birchbox. And a few cut outs from some scrap paper I had lying around.

 

IMG_3920

A sweet card to thank him for always working incredibly hard.

 

IMG_3913

Swedish Fish are his favs. Ella ate that smiley ball before he even had a chance to finish looking through the box.

 

 

IMG_3918

A play on the snickers campaign … although Mikey prefer’s a sweet and salty bar!

 

IMG_3914

He chewed that entire pack of gum in one day.

 

IMG_3916

A few IOUs to help the at home work load feel a bit less, as well as a few sweet comments, and funny jokes.

What other creative ideas do you have to lighten the mood when things get gray?