3.16.2014

Vivienne is 1!

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My sweet little lovey is now 1 year old!!! It has been such a fun, challenging, tiring, but happy year. SO much has changed for our family in the past 12 months and we have realized the huge responsibility that is parenthood. We’ve also discovered how much you can love one little person! She is such a light in our lives and can always make me smile, even on the worst days. She is the reason I do all that I do and even though it often feels like all I do is serve her (& everyone else…), it is so worth it!

She is a very healthy, happy and smart little girl and we are so grateful to be her parents. Watching her grow and develop into the funny little girl she is has been amazing. She now mimics us all the time and learns things like blowing kisses, folding her arms and making faces right away. We love her and so does pretty much everyone she meets!

 

To celebrate her birthday, I threw a little party at my office (in our training room) for some family and friends!

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I based the color theme off of the little yellow, pink and green mints that Vivi & I love! I had so much fun planning this party and it was pretty easy to find all the decor and food options. I collect things over a couple months as I see them at stores and then during the last few weeks I put it all together. Planning a party like this now takes so much more time since I’ve got my sweet baby to entertain all night after work. So, I just spend like 20-30 minutes a night when I can to make things like the cute little bows below. It helps me feel like I still get to have a hobby with my busy life!

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At the party, we started with serving lunch; sandwich rolls, pasta salad, broccoli salad, fruit and veggie platters and bagged chips. My family helped me out with bringing the different food items, which was so helpful! I prefer to put all my energy into the desserts, as you all probably know by now. :)

For dessert we had mint chip cookies, chocolate dipped rice krispies (my favorites of the day), animal cracker cake pops, and mint chip vanilla cupcakes with cream cheese buttercream.

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We played BINGO during lunch and had a great time winning some prizes as Scott called out the numbers.

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Vivi got to open her presents and actually loved taking out the tissue paper. She got a ton of great books, toys, shoes and clothes. Thanks so much to everyone that loves her so much!

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My dad made the awesome candle holder above for the long table (at my request). He is quite the wood-worker lately and it turned out so awesome!! We are going to keep using it for summer BBQs and outdoor parties at their house.

 

I made Vivi a tiny hair clip Party Hat that I adore. I used paper, ribbon and tissue paper. She looked adorable in it! I also found her birthday dress on Zulily (LOVE that site for all things baby recently).

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The best part of the party was easily the cake eating/demolishing. Vivi LOVED her cake. Eating cake (well any sweet probably) at free range was her dream come true! She probably ate at least 2 cupcakes worth. Poor baby was in a little food coma towards the end. But, she had a blast and we had even more fun watching her!

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We had a wonderful day and loved hanging out with all our friends and family. Vivi had a great birthday!

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Here’s to year #2!!!

2.18.2014

Valentine’s Love

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I have so much love for Valentine’s Day and this year it definitely loved me back! Scott knows this is one of my favorite days and he always goes the extra mile to make it great for me.

Vivi and I started the morning off with her cute new outfit from Grandma Julie! My mom is the best and gave each of us thoughtful Valentine’s! I also made little cookie flowers for everyone at the office and Vivi & I spread some love at work. Scott had flowers and chocolate covered strawberries (amazing!) delivered to us! I also found an oversized (it’s tradition) card from him in my car when I left for work that morning. I loved that Valentine’s Day was actually on a FRIDAY! So, we got to leave work a couple hours early and relax a little before our date that night.

Scott told me to dress up and be ready to leave the house by 5:30! So, of course I was ready by about 6:15 and we headed to Lehi to drop Vivi off with my sisters who agreed to watch her for us.

Based on my dad’s recommendation, Scott chose Faustina in downtown Salt Lake for dinner. It was the perfect choice!

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As we walked in, the hostess handed me a beautiful long stem red rose and took us to our private table. The ambience there was so nice and quiet, it was set up so romantic and perfect for Valentine’s Day! I much prefer this setting for a date than a busy, crowded restaurant! There was a Prex Fixe Menu for the holiday and we had a few options for each course. I had never been to a real multi-course dinner before, and it was awesome! Here a few of our delicious courses:

Sautéed Shrimp:

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Pear and Spinach Salad with Fried Goat Cheese:

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Vegetable Stuffed Portabella Mushroom:

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After dinner we took a trip to Trader Joes (my fave! and it was right in the neighborhood) and stocked up on some delicious goods. Afterwards Scott had a few more fun surprises for me: we drove to a pretty lookout point and he busted out some fake champagne and a little cake! I love cake! Especially when I don’t have to make it (which is rare!). He is so sweet and it was just a perfect night.~

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I am so lucky to have such a wonderful, thoughtful, patient husband. He is the best Valentine and I often take him for granted throughout our daily lives; which is why I think Valentine’s Day is so important!

I hope you all had a LOVELY day!

2.05.2014

Groundhog Superbowl

Groundhog Superbowl 

This year a miracle happened and the Superbowl took place on Groundhog Day! Annddd the Seahawks made it to the Superbowl!!! The Sunday before, I realized it would be on February 2nd and I pretty much freaked out from excitement (just ask my family). I began planning right away and had all the details drawn up in my head. Call me weird, but I couldn’t sleep that night because I was so excited to plan it all. And in only a week! I wished I didn’t have to go to work so that I could work on it all day and make it the best ever!

But, turns out that the little amount I was able to do was enough and the party was a success (as well as the game)! We invited a few friends to my parent’s house to watch it with us and ate to our hearts content as we cheered on our amazing Hawks!

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I created the Groundhog themed Superbowl logo, created some print outs and got my color copies done at Staples (its cheaper than buying a printer and ink for sure). I already had the cute little groundhog finger puppets (from previous years) and just added jerseys. I had planned to sew little jerseys, but after spending an hour with a tiny piece of fabric and my mom’s sewing machine I realized that was going to be wayyy too difficult. My mom came up with the genius idea of painting on the jerseys and so that’s what happened! I used stickers for the numbers. I love how they turned out and was pretty obsessed with them.

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We had chips and guac, popcorn chicken, veggies & dip and who knows what else besides all the sweets! There was way too much left over of everything because it turns out you want to focus on the game when your team is dominating. :)

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We had such a great time and the game couldn’t have gone any better (for Seahawks fans anyway…sorry Broncos!). Even the halftime show was awesome this year.

 

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The only thing we wished was that we could have been in Seattle with our fellow Seahawk fan friends and family. We heard about all the fireworks and after parties and were so jealous. But, we were in good company and it was Groundhog Day, so hey we couldn’t complain (ok, maybe I’m the only one that really cared that it was Groundhog Day…)! We were seriously all on such a high from cheering for the last 4 hours, it was awesome.

Good game Seahawks!

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Until next year, wood chuck chuckers…

1.30.2014

13 for Thursday

1. Vivienne loves her Aunt Mandy! Don’t get me wrong, she loves all her aunties, but she is really in love with Mandy lately. If she is in the room, she needs her attention! Sometimes Mandy comes to visit us at our house and Vivi loves it.

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2. Every Sunday night we clip Vivi’s fingernails. She is so sweet about it and lets me do it without a fight. It’s the little things. ;)

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3. Vivi is now a crawler! She began crawling legit this week. She has been trying for awhile and couldn’t seem to keep one of her legs down. But now she is on the go!

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4. I am loving Brussels' Sprouts lately. Scott is so happy about this! {…not really}   But, I have found a few ways to cook them that he actually likes! This recipe and also the dish below that I’ve made a few times. Chopped Brussels, edamame, carrots, chicken chunks, turkey bacon, all sautéed in some Thai dipping sauce from Trader Joes along with Tahini and a little coconut oil. Super yummy!

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5. Jake & Andrea asked me to make Covey’s 1st Birthday cake! I made a 3 tiered one and it was so fun to go to his birthday party. He’s the cutest!

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6. Tiff and I got to go see PINK last week! It was my first night away without a baby or hubby and we had a great time! Scott put Vivi to sleep and everything. He sent me pictures of them throughout the night and it made my heart melt. {I only wish those pink highlights were permanent…}

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7. PINK was awesome! She is truly inspiring~ Her show was full of acrobatics and lifts and amazing dancing and just pretty epic. She can do it all! I left feeling amazed and inspired by the human spirit and the desire to improve and exceed expectations.  Her show is shown really well in this video.

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8. We got together with my coworker Jackson and his family to watch the NFC Championship between the 49ers & Seahawks. We had some great food and great company. It was a good game and both teams played great…luckily Seahawks pulled it off!

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9. I made victory cupcakes for the office the day after the win and everyone loved them. Almost all the guys at work are Niners fans, but they happily ate a cupcake (or two or three). Their question: what do we get if they win the Superbowl?!

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10. Vivi gives the best kisses lately! This is her pucker up face.

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11. We love hangin’ out with Grandpa and Grandma! Vivi loves her 2 days a week at grandma’s house and loves cuddling with Grandpa!

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12. Scott doesn’t know that I took this picture, but I love it! He is folding Vivi’s laundry and is such a good daddy. Being a working momma keeps me busy, so I need lots of help at home and he is great about helping where he can.

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13. We are so excited for the Superbowl!!!

11 GO HAWKS!

1.13.2014

Simplify

That is my New Year's Resolution in a word: Simplify.

Why just one word? Because it's simple! ;) but truly it is because it is easy to focus on and apply to all situations. I struggle with trying to overdo things in my life. I do too much and give more than I can often. I love to give and want things to be perfect and special all the time. But, simplicity makes things special in a sweeter way. So, that's why I haven't been blogging lately. I'm simplifying.

I'm focusing on doing all that I can to get a sweet little smile from my baby girl and snuggle her when she needs me. I'm focusing on the joy and romance a date night can give my husband and I. I'm doing my best to be healthier, inside and out. I'm cleaning out the anger, annoyance and frustration, as often as I can. I'm trying to see the good and not the bad. Stress is the opposite of simplicity, this year.

I'm simplifying my job by focusing on people instead of tasks. People are my business and good relationships bring good business. I recently went to an intensive training class for work that changed my training and interactive outlook almost completely. I came back re-energized and put on a successful two day training of my own. I feel motivated and centered there, which is a contrast to recent months that were overwhelming, emotional and sometimes exhausting whirlwinds.

Someday I will update our blog and tell you about the wonderful holidays we had with family and friends, but not today. Tonight I'm going to squeeze my baby girl that just woke up from her nap and watch a movie with my man.

Happy New Year!

1.05.2014

It’s 2014!!!

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We had a fun, relaxing New Year’s Eve celebration! We contemplated going out, but opted to ring in the new year with our baby girl and my family instead~

We spent the night snacking on sweets and playing games- including a family favorite: The Mexican Train Game, which is pretty fun but our version of it has a little button that you push that plays a train sound and it is sooo annoying. So, sometimes people like to push it over and over and over {i.e. Scott!}. Its so funny… ;)

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We watched the ball drop and toasted to the New Year with Sparkling Cider in our glasses~

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And, as per our usual we headed outside with pots and pans to annoy the neighbors! And this year we added Sparklers! Vivi loved them! She made it up until midnight but was reallly ready for bed at about 12:01. So, she slept while the rest of us stayed up way too late doing who knows what. But it was fun! :)

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Here’s to a fabulous 2014~

& making the most of every day!