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    MARRIAGE IS HARD.

    Location: going to the chapel

    Honest writing is authentic writing, no matter how hard. Sometimes I’ll write something down and get through the post only to delete it, fearing what people might think of me. I’ve been listening to Oprah’s super soul conversations on CD lately–(I know, are CD’s still a thing? Apparently so…) My bluetooth adapter decided to take a dive to the other side, and now I’m back on that 2003 CD lifestyle. Anyhow, Oprah. Good ol’ O. Oprah decided to blow my mind per usual within the first chapter of her audiobook. She was having a conversation about the book, “The Unteathered Soul” by Michael Singer, with who else but Michael Singer himself. I clearly need to read his book. It’s both Oprah and Chopra approved which basically makes it a bible. She was talking about separating the soul from the self. Separating the self from the spirit. Realizing your thoughts are separate from who you are. It was mind blowing. I could never explain it as clear as I heard it, but in that moment, I felt like I needed to be a little more me, more open book, and more soul bearing with intention. Give you all a little bit more of my true self.

    With all of that said, I’ve written super briefly before about the challenges I’ve been having lately–pretty much only letting you know that I’ve been having problems, and then stating I’d come back to talk more in depth. And here I am. I am showing up today.

    Marriage is a funny concept, isn’t it? I mean some even refer to it as the “institution of marriage” which in my opinion sounds downright awful. I never knew what they meant when they said, “Marriage is work.” Miles and I jumped into it, never really questioning the overall meaning or reasoning as to why people marry to begin with. It seemed like the logical next step for two people who had chosen one another, and at the time felt as though they’d be a fit forever. I vowed to grow with him, love him unconditionally, and to always, remember, no matter how far we may part from one another, I’d always find my way “home.” I meant what I said, but meaning what you say and practicing that meaning are two entirely different things. Read more

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    A PLAYLIST FOR VALENTINE’S DAY

    Location: SPOTIFY

    I put together a quick dinner playlist for us to have on for Valentine’s Day, and I thought I would share! We have our wedding song, a few of our favorites we play all year, and a few to just set the mood! We’ll keep things low key, just the way we tend to like them. I’ll whip up our favorite baked ziti for dinner paired with a salad and something sparkling. Valentine’s crept up so quick, I’m just now putting together all of Luca’s Valentine’s day grams and coming up with a craft to do with his class on Tuesday. Most importantly, we’ll have love to share with each other, and that is the best thing we can do and give on Tuesday and everyday.

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    4 YEARS.

    Location: LITTLE ITALY

    We celebrated 4 years of being married today! We actually “officially” celebrated a few days ago because of Miles’ work schedule, and we went out to dinner at a restaurant I had been wanting to try for some time. The restaurant was Herb & Wood in Little Italy and it was SO good. We had a beet salad and whipped eggplant hummus with pita bread to start, and then for dinner I tried their homemade pasta and Miles went all out ordering an escargot & bone marrow pizza! I could barely stand to watch him eat it (it truly was a vegetarian’s worst nightmare!). Miles said his new barometer on life is the “exclusivity factor,” meaning how exclusive something is determines what you’re getting out of life–I’ll stick with homemade pasta, yes, that is exclusive enough for me. Read more

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    EASY VALENTINE GIFTS FOR KIDS

     

    1:: Made With Love Onesies | 2:: Tiger Sippy | 3:: Bath Bombs | 4:: Snuggle Puppy Book | 5:: Valentine Mailbox | 6:: Sugar Lip Gummies | 7:: Valentine Card Kit | 8:: Heart Stickers | 9:: Mini Play Doh 

    With Valentine’s Day just around the corner, I thought I would put together some quick and easy gift ideas to put together in a little basket for your kiddos. How cute is the wiener dog mailbox?! Now that Luca is older and in a pre-K, he can appreciate all the little things that make each Holiday so fun. Also, the Bath Bombs are a newer brand I came across at Target. Each bath bomb has a little surprise inside, which I know Lu will love! We have the snuggle puppy book, and it has a tune that goes along with the text that Luca and I love to sing while we read along. And everyone knows, you can’t go wrong with play-doh and toddlers! Harlow is still too young to understand, but those onesies are too cute to pass up! Hope this helps get your ideas flowing–What do you do to celebrate Valentine’s Day with your little ones?

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    BEFORE THERE WAS YOU: LUCA LENNOX WOOD

      I’m sitting next to Luca as he sleeps on his beloved “lion guard” sleeping bag. He’s really into old disney movies right now which feels pretty nostalgic to myself and miles. It makes it even better that disney junior came out with the “Lion Guard” series recently, and so after he received this sleeping bag from my dad for christmas, it was automatically dubbed his lion guard bed and favorite place to lounge, in fact, it’s the only place he’ll nap at home (other than on my chest to fall asleep). He’s so peaceful as he sleeps, it actually makes me breathe slower. I don’t know what it is about these quiet moments, but it makes me realize that even in the most non-eventful of days, there is something to soak up + store in your memories. As much as these final days of pregnancy feel tedious, I don’t know how I’ll ever get over these last days of having an only child. I’m literally grieving in sentimentality. Luca has set the precedent for all I know about motherhood, and instilled in me all confidence I’ve gained in going forward as a mother. I owe him everything. I wrote my book as a sentiment + tribute to all these feelings, for him, and I’ve been so blessed to share it with some wonderful mamas. Post-baby, I’ll be sharing a few of their stories about what becoming a mother has  meant for them. & Since we’re so close to mother’s day, I thought I would share my own thoughts with you, outside of the book, to jump start the series. This may be a lot of dribble, but I hope I’ll be able to look back on it one day and really feel like I appreciated what I had when I had it. Anyway, I hope you enjoy.

    BEFORE THERE WAS YOU: LUCA LENNOX WOOD | Before there was you…I was self centered. I knew love, but didn’t know love at the depth you brought to me. It was all instantaneous. I didn’t have to learn, it flooded out of me like I’ve known how to love a child forever and ever. I didn’t know what it meant to cry tears of joy, but nothing could have stopped those joyful tears from flowing down my smiling cheeks. Before there was you, my purpose was an idea, now it’s a practice. My purpose was always to be your mother. You are like a song I’ve never known, I’ve never heard, I’ve never sung, but somehow I know all of the words. Thank you for all you have given and continue to give to me. It wouldn’t matter where I go, where I am, where I’ll be in the future, you are always home. My permanent place of peace, and the driving force behind an ever expanding vibrancy + love of life. You are my bringer of light and the shine you’ve had upon me from the moment you arrived has kept everything aglow from the darkest moments, to the brightest bits and everything in-between. You are inexplicably my proudest feat & my life’s greatest work.

     

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    VALENTINE GRAMS

    Valentine gram ideas

    Valentine gram ideasluca gets a nice four-day weekend for the president’s holidays so he had his class valentine’s day party yesterday. i knew i wanted to make something homemade, but knew with my schedule and reality i wouldn’t be able to do it all on my own (at least not without stressing myself out). plus, what two year old is really going to know whether or not i slaved away at something? that’s right, none. so i ended up settling on a semi-handmade valentine gram which turned out to be so simple, yet looked totally custom. i’ll share the details below!Valentine gram ideasi started off by picking a card via minted. i found this cute little lumberjack card and knew it was the one from the second i put eyes on it. it was coincidence that it turned out to be a little play on words. our last name is wood, remember? so it says “from luca wood” & “wood you be mine?”–cute right?! i knew i wanted to make sugar cookies i could customize with frosting, so i bought the packaged sugar cookie mix instead of making them from scratch, and in turn made the royal icing from scratch. if you don’t mind pre-made shapes, you could also just buy the cookies ready made at the market, or order them without frosting from a bakery, if you’re really in a pinch.

    i used this recipe for the royal icing. royal icing can be super tricky and consistency is key. i recommend watching a you tube tutorial to get yourself familiar. i used one color (a red gel)  for all of my icing and just simply lined and flooded my cookie with that color. i then let them dry overnight & used these pens in red & black to create the plaid lines on top of the cookie. play around with how you like your lines–close together, more sporadic, etc.– but i ended up doing a variety of lining and still felt like they were all cohesive.Valentine gram ideasnow for the packaging! when you order your valentines via minted, there is an option to order coordinating stickers, so i did just that, and used the stickers to seal the glassine wax bags. i put one to two cookies in each bag depending on the size of the cookie. i used clothespins that i top wrapped with decorative washi tape (similar here) to secure the gram to the bag and for one last added detail i used heart ribbon to tie a sweet little bow onto the clothespin. this process took me all but five minutes maybe, and the finished product was just what i wanted!Valentine gram ideasvalentines day gram ideasValentine gram ideasi sent lu to school with all his grams in this adorable felt envelope i purchased at target last year (dollar section, for the win!) and embroidered L’s name on it, but you could easily make one–in fact, i found a new sew pattern for you here! i’ll definitely be using this for the new babe next year! the perfect part about the envelope is that they can collect grams to bring home in them as well! i love it. well, i hope you found this post encouraging and helpful! i hope your grams turn out just the way you envision them, and a happy early v-day to each of you! xo

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