Friday, July 12, 2019

Friday Favorites (7.12.19)

Happy Friday! I am finally getting into a groove now that we have been back from vacation for a week. I think I needed a vacation from my vacation :) And now we are headed on another little weekend road trip to central Illinois to visit my brother and his family. Today, I am linking up with Erika and Andrea and sharing some of my favorites lately! 
 Going on a road trip is one of my favorite past times and now one of my favorite things to do with my family. Two weeks ago we left on an 11 hour road trip to the East coast and visited Baltimore and Washington D.C. (our favorite city). I blogged about the Baltimore part of our trip here and will re-cap the D.C. part next week. In the mean time, here are a few of my favorite pictures from our trip. 

The White House

Arlington National Cemetery

The Smithsonian National Zoo

Gabriella's favorite monument

I had high expectations for some great family pictures on this trip. This was the best we got because #littlekids

Walking Tidal Basin

The Lincoln Memorial set up for the 4th

My sis-in-law introduced me to this cute little online clothing boutique called Sweet Charity Clothing Co about 6 months ago. I've ordered some clothes and accessories and have loved everything I have gotten! My favorite is this cross body bag I ordered for our trip to D.C. (and then another upcoming trip next month). It was the perfect little cross body for walking around a city! 

There are many things I love about this little boutique- the owner is the sweetest, it is FREE shipping always, and the owner donates 20% of her proceeds to charity. How cool is that? Check out the shop here

The cross body is here. I don't have any pictures of the entire bag from our trip so here is one from her website. 

 Day in the Life posts are some of my favorite blog posts to read and to write (and look back on my own). On Wednesday, I blogged a day in our life here. My day started at 5 am teaching English to kids in China. It is a pretty great way to start my day :)

And that is all I have for this week. I'm still trying to get back into a routine and find the time to do #allthethings.

Happy Friday, friends!




Wednesday, July 10, 2019

Day in the Life {7.9.19}

Happy Wednesday! Today, I am sharing a day in our life. I love reading these posts from others and I love looking back on what days were like because the years really do fly by and with little kids, I often forget what life was like at times. So here is a day in our life for summer 2019. I documented yesterday (7-9-19). 

Hello 4:30 am! I was up bright and early to get ready to teach (more on that below)...
In February, I started teaching English to kids in China.  It is a work from home job that allows me to set my own schedule. I usually teach from 5-7:30 am each morning and basically just roll out of bed, grab my hot chocolate or tea (I don't like coffee), and then teach the cutest Chinese kids for a few hours. I love this little job and that I can work from home (while my kids are still sleeping!) and create a little part-time income on the side. It's amazing how fast 2 1/2 hours goes (I teach kids in 30 minute blocks). 

My kids were up when I finished teaching so we sent my hubby off to work, had breakfast, and then headed to the gym. My kids love the childcare at the gym and I am so thankful they have a place to run around and get lots of energy out :) I'm currently doing a workout program called Shortcut to Shred where I am lifting weights and then doing cardio in between sets. I really like it and the fast pace. 


Gabriella was playing with her cousin while Madden and I headed to his 3 year well check at the doctor. He was not at all cooperative and the nurse had to weigh me holding him and then weigh me separately to get his weight because he refused to stay on the scale. Thankfully, he was much more cooperative for the doctor. This guy keeps us on our toes! :)


After his appointment, we headed home and then met my sister and her kids at the pool. We bought a pool pass for the summer at our local pool and it has been the best thing ever! Most afternoons we are at the pool for an hour or two.


After the pool, we came home and ate lunch and then the kids took a bath and I took a shower. The kids had quiet time and I did my devotions, prepped for my classes tomorrow morning, and did a little blogging (all of which I forgot to take pictures of).


somebody waiting for her daddy to get home...

We ate dinner and then were off to a little photo shoot. I had pictures taken of Gabriella in my wedding dress when she turned one years old and I wanted to do it again when she was 5. So tonight we met a photographer to take 5 year pictures of Gabriella. 

Then we were home and getting ready for bed because 4 am (for Manny) and 4:30 am (for me) come early!



Today, I am linking up with Shay and Erika for Let's Look and Jaclyn and Erin


Monday, July 8, 2019

Roadtrip to Baltimore

On the last Friday in June, we packed up our car and headed out for our much anticipated road trip to Baltimore and Washington D.C. Manny and I have been wanting to go back to DC ever since we visited 2 years ago so when a previous vacation plan fell through, we decided to take the kids and visit D.C. We have been planning, talking about, and looking forward to this vacation for a long time. 

We left Chicago at 5:30 am to drive the 11(ish) hours to Baltimore. It was a great drive and went by pretty fast. Our kids did awesome in the car. Can I just say Indiana and Ohio have the BEST travel plazas which make stopping with little kids so easy. They are literally right off the highway and we were pleasantly surprised with the variety of fast food restaurants/ice cream/travel store. Hello Starbucks at each stop! 
don't worry....I realized when I took this picture that her harness was to low and pulled it up :)


Growing up in Montana and then living for 9 years in California, I feel like I have road tripped all over the West so now that we are living in the Midwest, we are looking forward to exploring more of the East. I loved all of the CUTE farms we passed along the way. 


We made it to Baltimore about dinner time and met up with friends we were staying the weekend with at a restaurant. From the restaurant to the car, we got caught in a crazy rain storm.

My kids loved having a little sleepover next to each other on the floor!

Our friends live in downtown Baltimore so we had a great time exploring some of the city and getting to see a little of their life there.  On Saturday morning, we walked down to the Inner Harbor. We loved it here! There were cute shops, museums, the USS Constellation, restaurants, a park, and more! 


We rented a paddle boat and paddled around the harbor. 


Mr. "I hate water" said he was done about 5 minutes into our ride. I've never seen him sit so still :)


We love exploring new cities!


We went swimming in the afternoon in a rooftop pool in the middle of downtown Baltimore. It was so pretty!  I didn't get any pictures because I left my phone :( We walked to dinner at The Owl Bar and then checked out some historical sights on the way home. 




The busy day caught up with this guy and he fell asleep before bedtime. This also happened to be his last night as a 2 year old. 

The next morning we woke up and walked to the Farmer's Market in Baltimore. It was fantastic and had some amazing food! We then headed to Washington D.C. to celebrate Madden's birthday and spend 4 days sight seeing in our favorite city! I will be back this week with a re-cap of the D.C. part of our trip!

Friday, June 28, 2019

Friday Favorites (6.28.19)

Happy Friday! This may just be our FAVORITE Friday of the year. It is one we have been talking about and looking forward to for awhile now because we leave for vacation! We have a long road trip ahead of us today, but we are excited to get on the road and drive through some new states and see new parts of our country! We are spending the weekend with friends and then heading to explore more of our FAVORITE city! 

I think this is the first vacation ever in our 10 years of marriage where we aren't going somewhere to visit family or for some type of event (wedding etc).  If you want to follow along, I will be posting on my instagram (username: erindeanda) here

Today, I am linking up with Erika and Andrea and sharing about my FAVORITE little guy because he turns 3 years old on Sunday. We happened to be on vacation for Gabriella's 3rd birthday so it's only fair that we are on vacation for Madden's right?! Just kidding...our timing just worked out with it being 4th of July next week :) However, there is something fun and special about celebrating your birthday on vacation and we have a fun day planned for Madden. 

Madden Jax is 3!

 He is sweet, sensitive, full of energy, and always laughing.  His love language is tackling/climbing/"gettin you"! 


Eating has been a little more of a struggle this year. He has become really picky. I can't even remember the last time he has eaten a vegetable (unless I sneak it into something) because he just flat out refuses. He does love his protein and could live off of "shicken" if we let him. 


He hates water and swimming. He endured a week of swimming lessons where he screamed his head off, whined, and cried the entire time. He would much rather be playing in the sand which is where he can be found on the days we go to our local pool. On this day, he was surprised to find out that time-outs DO happen even when at the pool :)


He wants to be included in everything and is constantly saying "my turn". He loves his cousins and his sister and wants to be doing whatever they are doing. 


Madden is a daddy's boy through and through. Just the other night he was crying in the middle of the night and when I went to get him he looked at me and said "I want daddy". 


Some of his current favorites: animals and dinosaurs, reading books (especially animal books), guns and swords, playing dress-up, super-heroes, buzz and woody, army men, stuffed animals, jumping on the trampoline, tackling people, hiding, playing in his sleeping bag, riding his scooter and bike, and wearing hats. 


He has a sweet heart and when someone is crying or he knows something is wrong, he is right there saying "you ok?" and giving them a hug. Even though he is the younger brother, he often stands up for his sister. 


He is full of laughter and just a happy little guy! He is the perfect addition to our family and brings a laid back and go with the flow personality. Although, he is very stubborn. 

It seems like this was just yesterday....
photo by Butterfly Tree Photography
The days are long (especially with a very energetic boy) but the years really are short!

Happy 3rd Birthday to my FAVORITE little guy! 

Wednesday, June 26, 2019

What's Up Wednesday (6.26.19)

What's up Wednesday! Here is a little about what has been going on around here lately!

1. WHAT WE'RE EATING THIS WEEK
Well we leave for vacation on Friday so we are trying to eat up all the leftovers and what I can find around here! Manny and I eat a lot of protein so there is a lot of baked and grilled chicken being eaten here :)

2. WHAT I'M REMINISCING ABOUT: 
Madden turns 3 on Sunday and I have been reminiscing a lot about baby Madden and his past birthdays! I don't remember a lot from his baby days (hello toddler and newborn) but what I do remember is that he didn't sleep.....and I don't do well with little to no sleep. 

birth day...

1st Birthday
photo by Butterfly Tree Photography

2nd Birthday

3. WHAT I'M LOVING
My kids have VBS this week and not only are they loving it but I am loving a little extra time to myself AND that they are exhausted in the afternoons! A certain (almost) 3 year old has basically given up napping but I have gotten him to nap so far this week which means I am getting #allthethings DONE!


hello....camera is up here ;)

4. WHAT WE'VE BEEN UP TO
Swimming and swimming lessons (when it isn't raining here...hello June-where are you?!). I don't really have any pictures at the pool since I am busy trying to watch two little kids, but I did take some of their swimming lessons a few weeks ago.

So swimming lessons....I found a college guy who does private lessons out of his home and he was wonderful! I signed both kids up for 5 (30 min) sessions each. We went Monday-Friday and knocked it out! I was so impressed with their teacher and told him he better come home from college every summer to do this. Gabriella loved swimming lessons and did great! By the end of the week, she was even swimming in the deep end. But Madden was a different story....he screamed his head off the entire lesson. He doesn't care for the water plus he tends to be on the dramatic side anyways :) but he has to learn because we don't mess around when it comes to water and we are spending the summer at the pool. So he survived and we will try again next year!


5. WHAT I'M DREADING
Coming home from vacation. We leave on Friday for vacation and have been talking about and looking forward to this for so long that I know that I will be sad when it comes to an end.

6. WHAT I'M WORKING ON
Teaching, teaching teaching! In February, I started working part-time from home teaching English to kids in China. It is such a FUN and rewarding job plus it is pretty perfect that I get to set my own schedule and work from home! I can work as little or as much as I want AND it is great to have a job that works around me raising kids (I teach early mornings when they are sleeping or at night).

I have a post here on my blog with a little more information if this is something that you would be interested in. It has been a huge blessing for me, and I love to pass it on! You can also check out the website here. If you have questions please please please let me know because I would love to help!


7. WHAT I'M EXCITED ABOUT
Leaving for vacation on Friday!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

8. WHAT I'M WATCHING/READING
So far this summer I haven't had much time to even watch TV :( I do make sure and watch the Real Housewives of Beverly Hills each week and I am a little behind on the Real Housewives of New York.

As far as reading, I really liked Jane Harper's book The Dry so I was reading her new book The Lost Man and just couldn't get into it. So I returned it to the library and am currently reading this....
I really like it so far! I think it is interesting reading about how The View all started, how/why co-hosts have come and gone, and just a little more behind the scenes of what goes on in television.

9. WHAT I'M LISTENING TO
Lately I have been throwing it back and listening to pop hits from my college days (2004-2009). They've brought back so many memories!

10. WHAT I'M WEARING
swim suits and workout clothes!

11. WHAT I'M DOING THIS WEEKEND
ROADTRIPPIN!!!!!!! Spending the weekend with friends on the East coast and then Sunday meeting up with my parents to spend the week exploring one of our favorite cities. Sunday is Madden's birthday so we have lots of fun plans for that too!

12. WHAT I'M LOOKING FORWARD TO NEXT MONTH
A weekend at my brother's house in central Illinois and then celebrating Gabriella's 5th birthday at the end of the month!

13. WHAT ELSE IS NEW
Nothing that I can think of?!?!?!

Whew that is a wrap for today! Happy Wednesday!!!

Linking up with Shay for What's up Wednesday and Jaclyn and Erin