The Book of Mormon

A couple of weeks ago Wild Man and I were released from our callings in church as the Sunbeam teachers (kids ages 3-4). It was an entertaining calling and we both miss it more than we thought we would, but at basically 6 months pregnant I’m not going to lie – I am loving that I don’t have to chase these little ones for two hours during church anymore. Towards the end of our time in this calling I realized my attitude towards church was a little more negative because I didn’t love the calling I had. I know sometimes you’re called to callings that stretch and challenge you – and this one definitely did but the wind was definitely being taken out of my sails and I was very thankful to be released. I’d informed them that come November I wouldn’t be attending church much anyway while I kept my newborn quarantined. So it worked out. But this is all talk for a different post on a different day.

Now that I am released I get to go to Relief Society. I love Relief Society. I love being able to sit in the same room as a bunch of other great women just trying to do their best, be good moms/wives and be friends. My favorite part of being released from Sunbeams is absolutely that I get to be in Relief Society again. H is in nursery and loves it so its an hour just to myself – its therapeutic and wonderful.

Our lesson last week was one that really struck me. It was about The Book of Mormon and to be honest when I first heard that I assumed it’d be a lesson I wouldn’t be totally invested in. I don’t know why I felt that way because I know just how important the Book of Mormon is. Our teacher basically talked mostly about how reading The Book of Mormon consistently in her family has blessed her families lives in ways that wouldn’t otherwise happen if they weren’t reading the scriptures. Other women shared their stories of how reading The Book of Mormon has given them blessings and peace and guidance and honestly I haven’t felt the spirit that strong in church in a while. They were simple stories, but they were so real and special.

By myself I am pretty good at reading The Book of Mormon. I rarely miss days. But I realized that together as a family of three…I’m not sure if we have ever read the scriptures together. I hate that!

H is only one, but you build habits and traditions even when kids are tiny! Our Relief Society teacher mentioned that her youngest daughter said she doesn’t remember a time their family didn’t read scriptures together. That touched me. How cool would that be to grow up and never be able to remember a day when your family didn’t come together and read out of the greatest book we’ve been given? I want that for my kids! Don’t you?

I’ve ordered The Book of Mormon reader which is basically scripture stories with pictures so as my kids are a little order they can follow along the stories a little easier. But the more I think about it I think I want to read out of the actual scriptures with my kids, even when they’re little. For those of you who are rocking family scripture study, how have you done it with your smaller ones?

I’m so excited to get started on this and make the scriptures so much more prominent, important and a much, much higher priority! The Book of Mormon is important! All the time in church we hear that if we want to talk to Heavenly Father, we should pray to Him and if we want Him to talk to us, we should read the scriptures. Why would I deny my family of that blessing any longer?

xoxo

ceeceesparkles

Tweets from Montana

We just recently returned home from a weeklong camping vacation to a little place called Fortine in Montana. Its where my father-in-law grew up and is one of their families favorite places to travel. This was my second time going (the last time we went was a few months after we were married) and it was just as enjoyable as the first time. It was a lot different though. Last time I went I was a newlywed with not much responsibility at the camp. This time I had a 20 month old and a 4 month old puppy, plus I’m 25 weeks pregnant. Its a much different trip when you add in those factors. It was more tiring and my back hurts in all kinds of ways, but it was a lot of fun.

I’m not ashamed to say that I missed having cell service every day. I like social media and checking it daily, I’m not afraid to say that. One night while I was laying on our air mattress with H trying to get him to take an afternoon nap I decided to jot down a few things in my notes that I would have tweeted during the week had I been able to have service and live tweet my experience throughout the week.

So here they are. My tweets from Montana.

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“Pregnant + camping + hip/back aches = an emotional camper”

“My niece informed me I look more happy when I wear makeup. See if I go makeup-less anymore when I camp”

“Touched 30+ fish today – pulling hooks out of their mouths (and eyes – barf) and everything. I’ve come a long way. Applaud me.”

“All I want to do is sleep in but come 8am the tent gets hotter than the freaking sun. There is no sleeping in here.”

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“When I get really hot I turn red as a tomato. I’ve apparently passed this awesome trait on to my son.”

Follow up Tweet “Its real hard to tell if you’re getting sunburnt or if you’re just hot when you’re this way.”

Follow up Tweet “We BETTER not be getting sunburned because I make us reapply sunscreen every 2 hours #masteresthetician”

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“Bathing in a lake only makes you feel semi clean because you’re still bathing in a lake.”

“My mother in law is a dear and lets me shower in the trailer. I never feel more refreshed than I do after washing camping off of me.”

“My husband brought his iPad camping with us. Its been a lifesaver come nap and bedtime.”

“We are here 5 days and I brought 5 different swimming suits. If that doesn’t describe who I am then I don’t know what does.”

“Can our next trip be to Disneyland please?”

“My nieces and nephews keep the occasional fish they’ve caught in a large can and way too many times I’ve almost knocked it over.”

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“I hate all bugs and I cannot lie.”

“Nature has many weird smells.”

“If you’re pregnant and camping I demand you buy the Theracane and take it with you. It will get you through the aches and pains.”

“My 1 year-old has an amazing talent at being covered in dirt in less than 30 seconds.”

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xoxo

ceeceesparkles

Mom and Dad

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Today my cute parents are celebrating yet another year of their marriage!

I know this is so cliche to say, but I really owe a lot of who I am to my mom and dad. They have always been very involved parents who religiously put their children first and established really great relationships with the three of us. I never went through the phase of life where my parents embarrassed me or where I didn’t like them – and I think I can safely say my two little sisters feel the same way. I never understood how rare and special that was until I got older and realized a lot of people had much more rocky, complicated relationships with their parents. We all learned at a very young age how important and valuable family is the way we all translated that was by being very best friends. My parents always created a lot of trust between us so I was never afraid to tell them…pretty much everything. I didn’t feel like I needed to keep secrets from them because they were so understanding, not pushy and patient.

My relationship changed with my parents after getting married. I definitely saw that they recognized I was an adult, living with my husband and growing our family and they have always been so respectful of that big change. They have never tried to control me and my families decisions in any way, they have always allowed us to feel pride in the fact that we are adults and our own family unit now and ultimately get to decide what is best for us – even when that means they get the short end of the stick. They offer advice when asked and offer help every time its needed.

I have always known what incredible parents they are, but I saw that love grow to a new, special kind of love once I had my son. They are the cutest grandparents. They love my little boy and I know they will love all of my future kids the same way and it has provided me with so much comfort and joy. Just like they did with my sisters and I as little ones, they have created a meaningful relationship with H and he knows they love him, care for him and are there for him. I can’t put into exact words just how much I love knowing that we live so close to them and my kids can grow up with their grandparents so close and so caring.

Happy Anniversary to two of my favorite people. You have taught me so much about the kind of parent I hope to be, about the kind of person I should strive to be and about how to create happiness in my home, my marriage and my family life. I love you both!

xoxo

ceeceesparkles

My Little Boy

I have been hit pretty aggressively with the realization that we are down to just a few months of having just one child. Our sweet baby H. The perfect little bundle of joy who made us parents and introduced us to a happiness and overwhelming feeling of pride we never could have known if it weren’t for him. 

My heart is feeling torn in so many different directions. Of course I am beyond thrilled to have our second little boy in November. I’ve dreamt my whole life of having several kids and that’s still my dream! I am so excited to see H become a big brother and to finally meet this little brother of his. I am so anxious to see his face, to learn his personality and to soak all of him in. I actually feel more excited this time around, probably because this time I’m not so clueless. I know how special my children are now. I know how much I love them and how much I love being a mom. I can’t let myself dwell too much on this or else I turn into an emotional puddle. 

But then there is the part of me that knows how much H’s world is going to be rocked. Life as he knows it is going to drastically change and a part of me, in a weird way, feels a little bit guilty. People who often joke about how H is going to be second place, etc certainly don’t help the way I feel either. He is very accustomed to being the one and only. He’s used to undivided attention and snuggles on demand. I know it’s good for him to learn that the world in fact doesn’t revolve around him…but there’s still guilt!! 

I hope he can figure out quickly that he’s still so loved. Our love isn’t going to lessen for him even in the slightest. In fact I’ve heard the love we have for him will even grow! Our hearts are just going to get bigger so we can have the same amount of love for little brother! I hope he sees that he’s still our world, our joy and our tiny best buddy. Because he is – he always will be!

I know that especially once the baby is here I will feel differently. I’ll just know our new family of four is perfect and meant to be. I know that now, come to think of it – I’m just.. I don’t know. Am I even making sense or do I just sound crazy? I am so in love with this crazy 20 month old and I want him to never feel that his value has decreased just because another baby joined our family. It’s giving me so many emotions I honestly wasn’t anticipating. It’s funny how I am so far past elated for this new addition but at the same time feel a tinge of guilt. 

Please tell me I’m not the only one who’s ever felt like this? Also please tell me it’s just hormones or a phase or something and I’ll get over this before November?!

xoxo

ceeceesparkles 

A Month with the Pup

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We have had our sweet puppy girl for a month now (well like a month and a week if you’re wanting to be technical) and I most certainly have some thoughts and feelings about this. So many of my friends have kids and dogs and they rave about what a wonderful thing it is to have kids who have dogs. I knew I wanted that. Wild Man and I always talked about how we were going to get a family dog but we weren’t planning on getting her until later. Getting her ended up being kind of a rushed decision, but I truly do not regret it. Yes, we have a one year old, a baby on the way and a puppy. It is a little overwhelming and crazy, but overall it has been a good thing. I got really frustrated with her the other day and I’m not going to lie, for a split second I was ready to text Wild Man and say we are selling the dog – I’m done. But then I thought about the month we’ve had with her so far and I honestly think I’d be devastated if we got rid of her. She drives me nuts but we already love her and she’s part of the family.

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By far my favorite thing about having a dog is the relationship that H has with her. Its no secret that she loves him the most and he adores her right back. If H could talk I have no doubt she’d obey his commands the best and quickest. H is sad when we leave her and when we come back she’s always most excited to see him. These two are going to be such cute friends growing up. However their friendship is not all sunshine and rainbows. I often refer to them as frenemies. H for whatever reason gets really rough with her sometimes. He loves to yank on her ears, pull her tail, poke her eyes, step on her while she sleeps and so on. She’s a good girl and doesn’t ever retaliate but I still feel bad for her. But she’s not innocent in this either. Her favorite chew toy is unfortunately still H. Its getting better though – thank heavens. 90% of the time, however, they’re the best of pals hanging out on the floor or her dog bed together, snuggling and bonding. I love it. I am so glad my boys have a dog to grow up with.

This next point is kind of good and bad I guess, but I love that she is challenging me. She motivates me to get outside, go on a walk or just sit in the grass when I’d rather be on the couch watching tv. She has also made me more patient and has greatly shown me where I lack in patience. She has also been awesome motivation to keep the house clean so she doesn’t chew up everything in view.

She’s picking up on training pretty quick and we are really proud of her. She is a lab and labs are kind of notorious for being easy to train and for picking up on things quickly. We can mostly attest to that. She caught on to house training and being crate trained within like 3-4 days and has rocked those ever since. House training was the thing I was most worried about but she has proven to me that she’s reliable and has got it down. We hang a bell on our back door that she rings when she needs to go out and she’s so good at it! Its a massive relief. She’s not awesome at responding to her name yet but she improves every day. She’s good at come finally, too, which is nice. She’s mastered sit and lay down and we’re starting some more tricks now like stay, shake, etc. We are also working daily on training her to walk good on a leash which 9 times out of 10 she’s great at. She’s really a good girl.

Then theres the biting. And she’s recently discovered her bark. Those two things kind of make my blood boil. I am so sick of being bitten by razor sharp puppy teeth! I know I got myself into this by buying a dog, but oh my heck I hate it. Everyone says its because she’s a puppy and she’ll grow out of it – I can’t wait. For now we are working with her best as we can. I’ve definitely seen improvement but theres also a long way to go. The barking is new. The barking is loud and ear piercing. This is our latest challenge we’re tackling head on because this just isn’t acceptable in my house (do i sound like a prude yet?)

So yeah. She is a challenge and she is a pain and she tests my patience hourly. BUT we love our girl and are very pleased with our quick decision we made a month ago to randomly get our family dog.

June GBOMB

June was so good to me. It was busy and a little overwhelming and stressful, but what month isn’t?

GOOD

  • We found out this baby is a BOY! I always said I was fine with a boy or girl, but after we saw that he was a boy I felt so relieved I guess? I think I secretly hoped it was a boy. A brother for H sounds so exciting and fun and I really can’t wait to watch these two grow up together. IMG_6240
  • Wild Man had his birthday and we had his annual big pool party at my parents which was a blast. The weather was great, the company was lovely and I always love when people celebrate Wild Man because he really is one of the best, most selfless, friendly people that deserves love and attention.
  • We got a puppy! She’s a black lab that is keeping us busy and also driving us a little bit crazy, but we have high hopes for her and are excited that we finally got our family pet! IMG_6329
  • H has his molars and it has opened up a whole new world for us. I trust him so much more with food that scared me to give him a month ago and he is loving not having to chew with his front teeth anymore.
  • We started up Mom and Baby Swim Parties again for the summer! This is where a bunch of my friends and their babies come to my parents pool. We swim, eat snacks. socialize (and in last weeks case get crazy sunburned) and its really fun and something I really look forward to. The kids have fun but I think its especially great for the moms.
  • I’ve been feeling quite a bit more healthy this month! I’m still sick and throwing up, but I feel like its a lot more manageable and I’ve got some more of my energy back so I’m acting a little more human and its incredible.
  • H has figured out the beauty of sleeping in. I’m not sure if I’ve ever been more proud of my boy.
  • My grandparents from Idaho came down for a quick visit and we had a little reunion/surprise birthday party for my grandpa at my parents pool and it was so much fun. It lasted all day and every second was so enjoyable.
  • H got his first haircut. If it even counts as a haircut. He just had a few spots that grow a lot quicker than other spots, but it made such a big difference and he was SO good during the process!

BAD

  • H had his first wake-up-covered-in-his-own-poop experience. I’ll spare you details. Just know it was gross and I’d really be ok if we wait a long time before that happens again.
  • We got a puppy! I mean, its not bad that we got a puppy but its just…hard. She bites everything all. the. time. And her favorite thing to bite is H – NOT ok! She’s actually caught on to potty training, sleeping in her crate and doesn’t bark very often so thats really nice. But ohhhhhhh the biting. Also sometimes I wonder why I thought it’d be so easy to take on a one year old, a puppy and be pregnant. IMG_6146
  • My sciatic pain and hip and back pain have suddenly gone from bad to worse. I hobble like a little old lady and the shooting pain that I get is so terrible. I went to the chiropractor and thankfully had a few days of sweet relief. I can’t wait to go back.

ON MY BRAIN

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  • I am so glad that I have clients that come to my spa that recognize that I’m a mom and a sick pregnant lady so when I have to reschedule they are so understanding and patient with me. I try not to do it often, but when I do I’ve been met with kindness 99.9% of the time and I’m so thankful for this. People are good.
  • I recently found a girl I kind of knew growing up on social media and started following her and then had to stop very soon after. She was so awful and it made me sad. Nearly everything on her social media pages were her bashing on women for their success, claiming they didn’t do anything to deserve it, dragging them down because of their looks and stuff like that. I don’t actually want to get it on it because it kind of infuriates me but it just made me sad! I so wish people could just be happy for other people! Can you even imagine how much kinder the world would be if we were happy for people and their success? If someone is doing what makes them happy we should respect that and be happy for them – not tear them down.
  • A few days ago H had my phone and someone sent my Relief Society President the emoji of a hand flipping the bird. Luckily she thought it was a pointer finger – but I can’t quit thinking about how awkward that was.IMG_1704
  • Guardians of the Galaxy Mission Breakout has still not been ridden by me in California Adventure and this is a tragedy. I think about this multiple times a day.
  • What did I wear last time I was pregnant because I hate everything I put on my body right now. I need a new wardrobe, stat. If you have great maternity clothing suggestions PLEASE send them my way.
  • I’m getting a Prenatal Massage soon and all I’m saying is it better live up to my high expectations I have for it. I have been dreaming of this since the day I found out I was pregnant. So no pressure to whoever my massage therapist is. IMG_6371.jpg

xoxo

ceeceesparkles

Happy Birthday Wild Man & GENDER REVEAL

Yesterday was my darling husbands birthday! It was such a fun day and was surprisingly relaxing and rejuvenating. Wild Man is truly the greatest man ever. I have never met a more selfless, helpful person. Without fail he is always putting others and their happiness first. He is the first to offer assistance and he genuinely loves helping people and easing their burdens and lightening loads in any way he can – and it makes me so proud of him. He’s incredible. He makes me laugh harder than anyone else can and the happiness he makes me feel is amazing. He reminds me every day that I am special, valued and worth something. He is a phenomenal husband. So many women talk about how their husbands aren’t helpful around the house, how they’re lazy and whatever…but I always feel so lucky because Wild Man really isn’t that way. Especially as I have been sick with this pregnancy, he has been amazing in taking over some housework that I’ve neglected. He does laundry, dishes and knows where everything goes in the house. I don’t know what I did to get such a handy, helpful guy but boy am I lucky! And I can’t go without saying how much I love that he’s fully embraced my Disney lifestyle and has even taken it upon himself and he really does love love love Disney now too! I married an amazing man and I’m so glad that yesterday was a day to celebrate him, his birth and his wonderful existence in the world.

For his birthday we have always had a pool party at my parents pool with his family, my family and close friends. Its one of the things I look forward to the most every year. Last nights pool party was another success!

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Two years ago when we announced H’s gender, we did it at Wild Man’s pool party and pulled a boy swimming suit out of a gift bag. So we decided to do the exact same reveal this year since it was ironically working out the very same with timing and everything. Its always so exciting to tell friends and family what our baby is! It makes things feel a lot more real somehow.

Anyway…

ITS A BOY!!!!!!

We are THRILLED to have a little brother in a few more months! I cannot wait to see H and this little guy grow up as best friends. As soon as our ultrasound reveled that he was a boy my heart nearly burst with excitement for us, but especially for H. Oh I love my boys!

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xoxo

ceeceesparkles