Being Brickner : January 2017

Tuesday, January 31, 2017

Mom Confessions

Reading other mama's confession posts are some of my favorites, probably because 99.9999% of the confessions I can completely relate to.  And it's been forever since I shared some of my own, so I thought today was the day!!!  Enjoy, my friends!

1 - We had a date night the other night that started at Target to restock on diapers and ended with us home and back in bed by 9pm, and it was GLORIOUS.  Sleep is just a really big priority for me, so even though I love a good date night, I don't love losing out on sleep when I know I have two precious little alarm clocks coming for me in the morning.  Please tell me I'm not the only one.  Maybe one day we will go get dinner past 6:30 pm, but today is not that day.

2 - Speaking of Target, at least a few of the employees at both of the two Target stores we go to know both my girls by name.  Embarrassing but completely true.  The only person I know who loves going more than I do is none other than Miss Waverly Maye, and Avalon Elle is quickly becoming a close second.  They are my favorite shopping buddies, way better than my husband.  Honey, I love you more than life but I did not love when you googled the first item I picked up the other night to find where you could find it cheaper.  Total fun killer.


3 - We recently bought a new car, and though I had 100% intentions of officially becoming a mini-van mom, we ended up with a large SUV instead.  I still love the idea of them - and am forever jealous of those of you who have sliding doors - but after test driving it, I just couldn't do it. Never say never, but for now, we are loving the big SUV, it has three rows and lots of room and my husband is VERY happy with my decision. ;)

4 - I talked a big game that I was going to make Waverly finish the soccer season even though she didn't really love it (to teach her all the wonderful life lessons, like always finishing what you start), and we totally quit a few months back.  So yes, we are soccer drop-outs ... and I don't even feel bad about it.  After a month of tears on top of tears, mainly over the soccer "costume" she didn't like (totally my kid), we decided it just wasn't worth it.  She still adores ballet so much and that's pretty much her favorite day of the week, so I'm calling that a win and saving the $100 of cleats & practice clothes for Avalon, because she has to love it, right?!

5 - I can't remember the last time I worked out.  I used to work out daily before I got pregnant with Waverly, a few times a week before I got pregnant with Avalon, which has turned into ummm, no times a week now.  I just can't seem to figure out where to fit it into our schedule, before school is a big hell no, after school I just want to get to the girls ASAP, and at night after they go to bed is an even bigger hell no than early.  So I've just decided it is what it is, I will have allll the time in the world one day when my kids are older and then, I will probably just whine about having to work out because I have nothing else better to do.

6 - I am SO freaking over the winter and the cold and all the things that come with it.  As soon as our snowstorm came & left, we were ready for sandals and pretty floral dresses.  Is that too much to ask?

Wishing you all a happy week ahead! XO

Tuesday, January 24, 2017

Our Ladies Lately

We celebrated the girls half birthdays over the weekend, Waverly is halfway to FIVE at the end of this week and Avalon turned eighteen months last month.  We've been doing half-birthday cakes since Waverly was six months old, this year she wanted to make the cake entirely herself (and was so proud that she even cracked the eggs on her own!) and Avalon wanted nothing to do with that part, she instead only wanted to eat every little bit.  My husband & I sang to them, four years and counting, Waverly gets crazy shy anytime the birthday song is for her, even when it's just the four of us.  She clutched onto Avalon the whole time, which is such a perfect indicator of their relationship! ;)


 I thought I would share a little update on the girls lately, they are both at really good ages right now and I'm desperately wishing time could stop and I could bottle them up exactly as they currently are.

Four has been a much more manageable age for Waverly than three was, of course we still have our moments, but overall the sass & drama has calmed way down (insert biggest praise hands here).  To know her is to love her, her personality is as big as her heart and once she gets comfortable with you, she will be your best friend forever.  Right now ballet is her favorite day of the week, she loves to dance, changes tutus at least ten times a day, and lines us all up on the couch to do a performance most nights before bed.  She has approximately 634567 Shopkins and is obsessed with every one of them, along with her baby dolls, she can stay entertained in her room by herself for hours if we let her.  The girls in her class at school mean everything to her, second only to Avalon who she has single-handedly nicknamed "Ava", she really is the best big sister in the world.  Every night she makes sure Avalon has her bunnies and favorite Elmo books, and if she knows the next day is a school day for her, wants to make sure Avalon has a place to go and will be well-taken care of. ;)  She can drive me literally to crazytown and then seconds later I am reminded of how crazy in love I am with her.  Her personality reminds me a lot of mine, funny how that works.

Sweet baby Avalon.  Not really a baby anymore, but still very much feels like one to us!  She's matured so much in the last couple of months, probably more than any other time in her entire little life, which I think is a combination of it being the age she is and that she copies everything Waverly does.  She is more obsessed with her than ever before, it's so funny, anytime she gets a snack or sippy cup, she makes sure to get one for Waverly and then runs over saying "siiiiissy" and handing it to her.  It's hands down, my favorite!  Some of her other current favorite words are "mine", "faffles", "more", and she loves to repeat all of the names of our family.  She can get shy with new people at first, and clutches onto our legs but quickly comes around, and is currently very much a daddy's girl.  Her favorite show is Sesame Street, she loves to "read", plays with balls & trucks, climbs on everything, and is the best cuddler around!!!  We just adore her sweet and sensitive little demeanor so much.

A few photos of the girls together from lately, we have officially decided that Waverly looks like me and Avalon looks like my husband, though I always see similarities in the two of them as well!


Wishing you a very happy Tuesday!
XO

Thursday, January 19, 2017

Making Mom Life Easier

I've been wanting to share some products I've been loving lately, ones that have made starting a brand new year that much better our way!!  This is the year of no resolutions for us, instead I wanted to focus on some little things to make our daily life easier and maybe even a little more relaxing (read - my life easier & more relaxing, which in turn would make theirs, too!). ;)


The biggest change we have made so far is adding essential oils into our daily routine!  My mom got me a diffuser for Christmas and a couple sets of oils to start with, and though this was something I probably would have never thought to do myself, I have loved it so far.  There's just something about the diffuser running that makes everything so much more peaceful and relaxing!  I've since got a second diffuser for our bedroom (found on sale here) and got rollers for the girls before they go to bed.  My husband laughs every single time I roll oil onto their feet, but I really am officially converted. ;)  If you have been thinking about using them, I definitely recommend at least trying!

 Our kids are super picky eaters, and though I know we are supposed to just offer them what we eat, that doesn't seem to work often around here.  So sometimes, you just gotta do what works.  These frozen meals have made the biggest difference for us, they are quick & easy, and I can make a different meal for each of my girls.  They really are so good, I even ate one the other night when I didn't feel like making anything for me. ;)

This is the year that I am determined to play more music in our home and in turn, less tv!  Both my girls would sit and watch princess movies alllll day long (or Ben & Holly, or Sesame Street ... ) if I let them and it's totally a double-edged sword.  I recently got a new Bluetooth player and have been immediately turning that on when we get home, and it seems to be great alternative to the noise from the tv, plus it just creates a better vibe! :)  I also love this for staying off social media, since your phone is literally hooked up and you can't access it.

Just a quick shout-out for my new best friend, the I-robot!!!!  I'm sure I am the last to the party on this one, but this thing has seriously changed my life!!!!  We have hardwood floors and every day it runs while I'm at work, which is a total game-changer.  The girls are also obsessed with it, it's so funny, they like to run after it or just get down and watch it work!

And lastly, I always love finding new products to use, our friends at Logic recently sent us over some samples of their home, pet, and bath line, which is all-natural & toxin-free!  We've been so happy with them so far, my favorite is definitely the shampoo since we are fooooorever trying to find a good shampoo that doesn't tangle Waverly's hair.  They have tons of other options as well!

I hope this is helpful to other mamas, it's crazy how little things can make such a big difference!  Hope your 2017 is starting off in the best way ever!  XO

Friday, January 13, 2017

Family Pictures

I'm finally getting around to posting some of our family photos we had done back in September, and to be honest, I probably only found the time to go through them because of the snowstorm that hit and kept us at home for four days straight!  It was just so hard to narrow them down, I love these images so much and could have easily chosen twenty more favorites.  Brooke is the best about hanging with us for as long as our girls will last and taking a million pictures, mainly of us just being "us" and doing things we normally would.  One of the many reasons I am obsessed with her and will treasure all the moments she has captured of our family over the years forever & ever.

It's crazy to think about how far we have come since September.  We actually did these the weekend before I started my new job, something that came after a pretty stressful few months, and something we were so excited for but also pretty nervous about.  Turns out, it was the best thing that could have happened to us.  Fast forward four months to now, and we have settled into a routine, the girls are thriving, and not for nothing, the countdown to my three month summer vacay is already on (one of the best perks of my teaching job!).  Everything happens for a reason, my friends.  Forever thankful for this life and these people I get to spend it with.



All images taken by my sweet friend Brooke of Brooke Tucker Photography.  Love her!

Happy, happy weekend friends!
XO

Wednesday, January 11, 2017

Snow 2017

Well, we are on day THREE of no school over here, and loving every minute!!!  It initially started snowing late Friday night after we went to bed, we woke up Saturday morning to a couple inches of snow, with flurries still coming down strong and no sign of it stopping anytime soon.  Waverly was all kinds of excited, she set out everyone's clothes and was talking a mile a minute, so we put breakfast on hold while we layered both girls up and took them out!  Avalon was definitely a little more hesitant than her big sister, and it was absolutely freezing, but it was so magical to be able to see their little eyes light up with something so new & different.  We really don't get to see this sort of thing often, especially this much of it - by the end of the day, we had about eight inches!  We've spent each day since going out to play in it at least a couple times, my husband bought a couple of sleds from a guy on Craig's List and we have gotten a ton of use out of them.  Inside, we have been passing the time with the girls new toys from Christmas, some movies, baking, and eating lots of snow cream.  It's almost felt like a second Christmas break, we are totally wishing for this to happen every year!


Hope you are staying warm your way!  Happy halfway through the week!
XO

Friday, January 6, 2017

Friday Favorites

The first work week of 2017 is (almost) over, we made it, friends!!!  It was actually really nice to be back into a routine again, we all really do best that way and I always find that weekends are that much more exciting after a long week.  We are double excited about this weekend, SNOW is in the forecast and we are crossing our fingers that they actually got it right this time!  We've been doing snow dances non-stop and Waverly is begging to "make herself an ice queen".  We really didn't get much more than a dusting last year, so I would love to see both our little girls in the snow together this time around!

I thought I would share some things I have been loving lately, there's nothing quite like curing your post-holiday blues with some new pretty things! :)  We have been replacing our reds & greens from Christmas with brights and pastels, it's been so much fun to lighten up and has me all kinds of ready for spring.


This throw from Anthro is gorgeous, I can think of so many places that I would love to put it!!!  We recently got this quilt from there, I think I posted about it when we got it but haven't shared how much we absolutely love it.  It is way more expensive than any of the comforters we have gotten before, but you can tell the difference so much!  It gets softer and even more beautiful with every wash, and already has held up to two kids jumping on it at least once a day.

My mom got me this book for Christmas, it's specifically for moms, and basically you write one sentence at the end of each day.  I have loved this so far, it kind of goes along with choosing one positive part of each day no matter what, which I started doing a couple months back.  It really is amazing how doing this completely shifts your way of thinking, and helps remind you of how much goodness there is in this crazy season of life!  I really have a hard time picking just one sentence each night!

We are always looking to the next holiday over here, so Valentine's Day brainstorming is under way!!!  I actually walked into Waverly bringing out the Valentine's books in the playroom the other day, we have already been reading them each night!  I love these leggings, I got them for Waverly along with these tights for Avalon, and have been eyeing this countdown calendar, I know both girls would have so much fun with this!

And lastly, just a couple pictures to go along with the first!  We recently went ice skating, or actually Joe and Waverly went ice skating while the other half of the family watched, because Avalon was too little and I was the worst ever.  This was our second year in a row, Waverly had a really hard time last year (she got frustrated easily) but did much better this time around and it was precious!!!!  Also pictured, Avalon showing off her lips with a face stained from candy, how I will forever remember her from the holidays this year! :)


Wishing you a very warm, happy, fun-filled weekend!
XO

Monday, January 2, 2017

Hello, 2017!

Happiest twenty-SEVENTEEN, friends!!!!  We had a pretty low-key New Year's over here, we had originally planned to go over a friends for dinner while my parents watched the girls, but plans fell through at the last-minute and we ended up staying home.  Which was perfect.  As much as we love to celebrate with friends, home (in our PJs) is where we are happiest and the years going by at lightning speed really are the best reminder that these special days with our babies at home are passing us by all too quickly.

I got my nails done (!!!) New Years Eve morning and picked up a few things I thought would make the day extra special.  Confetti & some beads (that we will surely be finding around the house for the entire rest of the year), candles to make a cake, and a set of poppers that we did outside before it got too dark.  We made some dips to watch the football games - ROLL TIDE! - and looked up a video online to countdown with the girls before they went to bed.  My husband made a steak dinner for two, we each had one glass of champagne, and were in bed by ten just in time to get enough sleep for an early wake-up call in the morning from two very happy little girls.

 

To say we are excited about starting a new year is very much an understatement.  After two career changes for me in 2016, we are finally starting to feel settled and like we have things figured out again.  I am feeling very optimistic about 2017, the year that I have decided is the year I won't have any resolutions or words of the year, or career moves. ;)  Instead, I have just been thinking about some little things I want to accomplish, like playing more music around the house, taking more videos, and just saying "yes" more.  My goal has always been to make the most of every day, make a fun & memorable life for my family, and I can't wait to do more of that in the new year!!!!

Hope you had the most wonderful holiday ever!
XO