I’m Still Kickin’

Oh hey! Long time, no see! Remember me?

Its been a while. But I don’t regret it. I feel like 2019 has already been the year of learning about myself, my limits, my strength, my weaknesses and my boundaries – and its only May! There has been a lot of soul searching and a lot of great realizations. I’m thankful for it, but I’m also exhausted by it. But its all good. It really is.

I’m hoping to start blogging semi-regularly, again. Will I actually? Yeah, who knows. Hopefully. But if I don’t, I’m not going to guilt trip myself. But if I do, then awesome! I’m excited!

Mostly I just wanted to drop in and say hi and remind you all that I still exist and that I’m just a happy little camper who hangs out with my boys all day and am living the mom dream.

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What We’re Lovin’

Ok, so since its been like…forever since I have done any kind of ‘monthly favorite’ type post, I just decided to round up a few of our favorite things we’ve been into lately (it was so hard to narrow stuff down!) and put them on here! They’re all over the place, so get ready fora wide array of things, and as always, I’d loooove to know what some of you and your families current favorite things are!!

Lets start with this.

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Have you heard of Grove Collaborative, yet? You guys!! I love it. Its basically a household cleaning (plus a little more) delivery service and the products are all safe in the home. I didn’t realize how important this was to me until I had kids and a dog. I want products in my home that if my kids got a hold of, they aren’t terribly dangerous. You know? Though I’m certainly not advising that you let your children play with cleaning supplies, no matter how safe it is. But anyway! You start by creating an account and picking products you want to have shipped to your house! I’m obsessed. I’ve also figured out I’m definitely a Method and Mrs. Meyer’s person. It is also motivating me to clean – so win, win! You should try this if you haven’t already, and if you have questions, send them my way! If you’d like a referral link, let me know and I’ll send it your way! (message me here or email me at ceeceesparkles@gmail.com – just give me your email!)

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On the topic of cleaning, I ordered these Microfiber Cleaning Cloths to go with all my fun Grove products and I didn’t know how much I’d love them! There are 24 and thats enough to let you always use one to clean, but still allow you some freedom to get a little behind on laundry, you know what I mean? Twenty-four may seem like a  lot, but its just right. I really love using these to clean.

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Now onto make up. I’ve found a new, cheap foundation that I’m a big fan of. Five stars. Two thumbs, way up. This is the Rimmel London Stay Matte foundation. A tiny bit goes a long way and its good coverage and stays on all day! I have several different shades depending on what shade of spray tan I am (or lack thereof). They’re cheap enough, too, that I don’t fell guilty at all about having so many. Need a new foundation? Try this one.

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This is a Morphe blush palette that I’ve been obsessed with. Pinky/orangey/coraly blush’s are my current jam and this palette is full of them.

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This is a terrible picture, but this is the Loreal Brow Stylist Definer in Dark Brunette. I am pretty addicted to the Anastasia Beverly Hills brow pencils, but I love this one too now and its so much more affordable! It works really well and truly stays all day (and all night – just in case you forget to take it off at night ha!)

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In January I decided to try out a Bullet Journal. I am awful at cute penmanship and I have no artsy ability whatsoever, but I’ve loved the creativity and openness this journal has given me. Its fun. Maybe someday if I’m feeling brave, I’ll post about my bullet journal and show you all the sorry attempts at being cute and creative. It’ll give you all a laugh.

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Ok. This is called Gorilla Snot Gel and that is the WORST possible name that could ever exist for any product, but! it works. Like really well. My boys have weird hair, especially H. Its thick, coarse, curly and near impossible to manage and this is the only thing I’ve found that can hold his hair in place. You know, until he decides to walk around on his head and back legs.

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These suitcases for my boys give me life. We have a fun trip coming up (any guesses where?) and I can’t wait to see my boys in the airport with these!! Also, why is waiting for an exciting upcoming trip so painfully slow?

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These sheets from The Trendy Treehouse are the best. They’re unique, soft and so stinkin’ adorable. My boys, who normally could care less about what their sheets look like, are even super into these.

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We’re ending on this. Toothpaste. Haha. H has started toothpaste that he can spit finally and this is the one we like the best. This is the Burt’s Bees for Kids Fluoride-Free toothpaste. It smells yummy, works well and I love that it doesn’t have fluoride, because we’re still mastering the art of not swallowing toothpaste.

 

Lately…

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Once again, I’m here explaining my absence. But unlike times previously, I’m not apologizing this time. I keep making grand goals, goals that are even very realistic for me, to blog more. But it just doesn’t happen because…life.

I am the mother of two little boys who are my whole world and who keep my very, very occupied. The only reason I’m even making a post now is because everyone is asleep for the night and I’m not tired yet because I took a long, amazing nap today after church. I have plenty of time throughout the day to post here and there, but I choose not to. I choose to use my time in other ways. And I’m perfectly happy with it. I mean, would it be great to have several more hours in the day? Oh, yes. But I’m also very content with the way I spend my 24 hours a day.

My boys and I are in a great groove. The house still gets messy more often than not, some dinners are more involved than others and sometimes I still go to bed feeling like I failed my family as a wife and mother, but for the most part I am happy and what feels more important to me, my family is happy. I’m figuring out ways to make sure I take care of myself and give myself some me-time, I’m figuring out how to best give my boys the separate, individual attention, nurturing and love they need, I’m figuring out how to best be the greatest version of the wife my husband deserves. I’ve been avoiding other things, such as my blog, in order to help myself figure these things out a little better each day.

However, I still want to be here. I still want to blog and I thiiiiiink I’m ready to make somewhat of a return. I’m excited. I have some ideas, but just know if I disappear again, its because I’m off doing things that feel more important to me at the moment.

I hope you’re all doing well!

xoxo

February Review

Thank heavens for February, am I right? Oh I needed February. If you follow me anywhere on Social Media, you know I had strong, upset feelings towards January 2019, so I’m just so glad that February stepped up and restored my faith in this new year.

GOOD

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  • First and foremost – our health was good and I AM GRATEFUL. Healthy kids, healthy dad, healthy mom. Happy life.
  • I got hooked on a show called Poldark, this month. Um. Go watch it. Love it. Thank me later. Its so amazing and I am so emotionally invested that my heart is just about to burst.
  • Wild Man and I had a visit to the temple this month and it was just so, so good. It was exactly what I needed. Things were so amazing there and I’m already craving another visit soon.
  • There was something really great about the time we spent with our families this month. We are so lucky to live so close to most of our families. I hope we always remember how lucky we are. I’m especially grateful my boys are so close to a lot of their cousins.

BAD

  • I still haven’t quite figured out how to calm my brain, yet. My mental state is all over the place. Sometimes its fine, but it feels like more often than not I’m feeling really anxious and stressed out. Its not fun

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  • Exercise and eating healthy ummmmm just didn’t happen in February. I mean, there were good days, but for the most part I just neglected that part of my life. I have high expectations of myself to get this all back in check in March. It’ll happen, I promise.

ON MY BRAIN

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  • Lately I’ve been bored of most social media. Something honestly, I never thought I’d say. I’m not ashamed to admit that I love social media. I still love Instagram, but YouTube is usually my very favorite platform but lately I just kind of haven’t cared about it and I’ve got to say, it feels really nice to not feel so attached to it anymore. I feel freer and like a better mom. I don’t know why I have kind of fallen away from it, but I’m sure thankful that I have. Its awesome.
  • We have a really fun vacation coming up soon and I am in that phase of going crazy trying to stay patient. I am so stinkin’ excited and can’t wait. I don’t want to share what it is yet (sorry i’m weird), but don’t worry, between the blog and instagram, I’ll share lots of pictures of it. Its so exciting to have something like this to look forward to. I have just felt the need to get away recently. Our family needs a little break from reality and this will be the perfect way to do so.

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Where to Take Pictures in Disneyland!

A few weeks ago my sister-in-law/BFF asked me where she should make sure her sweet little daughter had her pictures taken on their trip to Disneyland. I had a few quick answers for her, but then this really got me thinking. There are SO many good places for a photo op in DLR and I love like…all of them. Especially character pictures, but I’m leaving those out of this particular post. But maybe you don’t want to spend your whole day scouting the perfect picture area, you know? So I’ve made a small list of my top 10 places in both Disneyland and California Adventure to make sure you get your picture taken.

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10. In Front of the Balloons. You know the balloons. The ones being sold all over Disneyland? I love pictures with those behind you. You can also ask the Cast Member holding the balloons if you can hold them for a picture (you won’t be able to hold it all alone, the CM will still be holding them, just off camera). My personal favorite kind of balloon picture is one of a little one being held up in front of them so all you see are the balloons, the sky and your little one being hoisted up in dads arms. So cute.

9. The Teacup or Dumbo. Outside of these rides, they have a stationary teacup/Dumbo to sit in and take a few pictures in. You can’t miss out on these.

8. The Matterhorn. Theres just something extra Disney about this spot. Plus its a really cool area.

7. Main Street. I love Main Street. There is something extra magical about it, therefore the photo opportunities there are wonderful.

6. In front of the Partners statue. Thats the statue of Walt Disney and Mickey Mouse holding hands in the Hub at Disneyland (just a ways in front of the castle). Its iconic. Its beautiful. I love seeing people copy the post of Walt and Mickey, especially.

5. On King Arthurs Carousel. This is one of the most Disney-esque pictures I could ever suggest. Some of my favorite pictures of my boys are ones of them on a horse, enjoying the carousel.

4. Snow Whites Wishing Well. Oh I love this area (just to the right of Sleeping Beauty Castle). Its quiet and hidden away and its magical and whimsical and the picture opportunities there are lovely.

3. In Front of the Train Station. You know, like right when you walk in after getting your ticket/pass scanned. Everyone takes there picture there, and for good reason!

2. The Pink Door by Alice in Wonderland. This is in Fantasyland. Its a tiny little door near Alice in Wonderland and Teacups. Its adorable and makes for fun pictures. Its especially fun if you can put your little ones in front of it!

  1. In Front of the Castle. Obviously this is my #1, because you just can’t go wrong with a castle picture. Want to mix your castle picture up? Don’t take it right in front of the castle. Move to the side. Take it from behind the castle, in Fantasyland! Go stand at the beginning of Main Street! There are so many ways to customize this picture to make it your own. Also, if you want something super cute – my very favorite castle pictures are little babies/toddlers sitting by themselves in front of the castle. Obviously you have to wait until there isn’t a crowd thats not paying attention that may trample your tiny precious cargo, but once you get that clear spot, go for it – because this will be one of the best Disney pictures you’ve ever taken.

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10. At Carthay Circle. Its a big, interesting backdrop to have, and depending on what season/celebration you’re there for, its typically decorated really well!

9. Anywhere around Soarin’. There is an airplane thats a great photo op, the building itself is pretty neat and there is beautiful scenery around it – all of which will give you a lovely picture.

8. The Walt Disney statue on Buena Vista Street. Another classic, much like the Partners Statue in Disneyland. Its supposed to be Walt as he would have been when he first arrived in California.

7. Grizzly Peak/the Surrounding Area. There are cool waterfalls, pretty rock formations and nice scenery/nature spots. You can’t miss these ones.

6. In Front of Monsters Inc. All the doors and bright colors – love. This is one of my very favorite places for a picture. Its just so cute and bright and happy.

5. The End of Hollywood Land. There is a big poster type wall – does that makes sense? Its a fun, iconic spot.

4. With the Red Trolley Car. You’ll see it. It drives around California Adventure all throughout the day and is an adorable spot for pictures.

3. In Front of Guardians of the Galaxy – Mission: Breakout! Its just an iconic one and the exterior of that ride (well, the whole entire ride, actually) is amazing)!

2. In Front of Pixar Pier. There are a number of spots you can stand to get an amazing Pixar Pier shot and I recommend all of them. I think my favorite is either on the bridge on your way to Pixar Pier or in the World of Color viewing area.

1. Anywhere in Cars Land. You can’t pick a bad spot here. The theming in Cars Land, as I and so many others say all the time, is incredible. You truly feel like you are in the movie when you’re here. So seriously, every single spot is a great place for a snapshot.

 

Valentines

Oh, Valentines Day!

Tomorrow is the big, romantic holiday and…am I a Valentine’s Day Grinch if I say that I am not super in love with this holiday (pun, intended)? Don’t get me wrong, I love love. I’ve got to be one of the cheesiest, hopeless-romantics on earth. Wild Man can attest to how ooey-gooey I can be and how love stuff sucks me in. But I have this problem with thinking this day needs to be special for love. I guess I’m in the group of people that think, shouldn’t we celebrate love like this every day?? However, if you are one of those people who are crazy about Valentine’s Day, then go you! If I’m being honest, I think I’d like to be a Valentine’s Day crazy person. I admire those people. Maybe someday. But not in 2019, at least.

Know what I do love, though? My husband. Since this is the day of love I just feel like I need to say

HAPPY VALENTINE’S DAY WILD MAN!

He’s great. I’m glad he is my forever Valentine. Even though we keep our Valentine’s Days super low-key and uneventful, he still makes them special for me. I am a lucky lady to have him. Now, in an awkward attempt to wrap up this dull-feeling blog post (does it feel that way to anyone else? yeah, probably), here are some old pictures of the two of us. One from our wedding and two engagements. P.S. I kind of miss my blonde hair.

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Have a happy, happy Valentine’s Day tomorrow – no matter how you celebrate it!

My Hulk Boy

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Three is a funny age. You always hear about ‘terrible twos’ but I dare say that whoever coined that phrase hadn’t parented a three year old, yet. H is hilariously unpredictable. Most of the time he is our happy, enthusiastic, curious, adventurous, rambunctious little boy. He enjoys doing good, he follows rules and he is kind.

But every once in a awhile lately he turns.

He goes from that sweet boy explained above, to a little Hulk. (fitting thats his favorite Avenger right now) He explodes with rage. He screams and starts kicking and punching. He gets mean and mad and there is no calming him down.

I’m truly at a loss right now to know how to control these outbursts, while still allowing him to be himself and let him know its ok to feel things and express how he feels. You know? But at the same time, its not ok for him to kick and punch me all the time, right? Oh, the joys of motherhood. As frustrating as it can be I honestly wouldn’t trade it for the world.

He is a great boy who I feel very lucky to be able to witness grow up and learn more about each day. This is fun. It really is.