Thursday, May 31, 2012

It's OK but.....

Its Ok Thursdays

I'm putting a little spin on this week's It's OK Thursday.  This week, all my It's Ok's are dreams of mine followed by a strong dose of reality. Hope y'all like it!!!

It's OK.......
~to aspire to be a SAHM who prepares the healthiest food, who participates in all the play groups, who has a spotless house, and who does amazing crafts with their kids but......know that I'd drive myself BANANAS if this was my life
~to make my own coffee at home because it's so much cheaper but.....realize that Starbucks will always make a better cup than me, regardless how much it costs
~to say I'm only going to read one more chapter before going to bed but....end up staying up and finishing the book before my head hits the pillow
~to say I'm only eating fro yo once a week but....end up eating it at least 3 times per week

I have a prayer request as well.  Heaven got a new Angel Tuesday night.  We lost one of the cutest little girls.  Please pray for her family as they learn to live without their sweet girl.  Please pray for the doctors and nurses who have cared for this little girl.  We work in a difficult profession where death is part of the game.  But it never makes it easier on us. Unfortunately deaths seem to come in 3's so please pray for all of us as we wait and see what the future holds for our patients.

Monday, May 28, 2012

Extreme Home Makeover....Non Extreme Version

If you follow me on Twitter or Instagram, you might have noticed that I've been talking a lot about my living room makeover that we had planned.  The Hubs and I have been making the most of our extended weekend and did a complete room redo in our family room.  We moved into our house 3 years ago (over Memorial Day weekend) and I had grand plans of how I was going to decorate our first home.  But then, 2 weeks after we moved in, Emmy decided she was going to cause us some grief.  I was 28 weeks pregnant and had a placental abruption and landed myself on bedrest for the rest of my pregnancy....aka we only had 1 paycheck coming in.  So any money we had saved for the house went to paying our bills since I ended up being out of work for a total of 15 weeks.  So for the last 3 years, our house has never been completed finished.  Our dining room finally got a coat of paint.  We I couldn't decide on curtains for the dining room.  And I HATED the color of our living room (and I was the one that picked it out). Just sitting in the room made me depressed.  So finally decided it was time to figure out what I wanted the room to look like.

I've been quite inspired by the current trends in home decor.  I love grays and yellows.  I love turquoise and greens.  I just knew I needed to choose a color palette that would allow me to change the look of the room without much work.  OK let's face it...I change my mind a million times and get bored easily.  I needed a color that would accommodate my indecisiveness.  We scoured Lowe's paint section and came up with 3 colors that the Hubs and I thought might work.  I had the paint chips taped to our wall for a few weeks before I decided it was time to actually test out the colors.  I love that major paint brands now have sample sizes.  I scooped up the 3 samples and painted them in random places on our walls.  I had to see how each color looked on each wall in any type of light.  So for a week, our walls looked very similar to this:
We pretty much narrowed it down to the middle color and the one on the right.  Depending on my mood, what time of day it was, what direction the wind was blowing, I knew what color I wanted.  It changed by the minute.  So on Saturday we headed to Lowe's and I had about 30 seconds to come up with my paint choice.  We shopped around a little bit before hitting the paint aisle.  We went to the curtain section and I fell in LOVE with the curtains we purchased (and the ones we purchased for our dining room).  And as we headed to the paint section, I happened to glance at the curtain packaging and noticed that the brand of curtain is also a specialty paint line too.  They suggested 2 different allen+roth paint colors that coordinate perfectly with our allen+roth curtains.  We checked them out and decided to go with the color Portland, a happy color that was the perfect blend of the 2 colors I was originally debating between.  We loaded up our shopping cart (Lowe's was quite good to was pretty much 1 stop shopping) and headed home.  We unloaded the car, loaded the kids back up, and headed to the mall for some shopping, then hit up Bed Bath and Beyond for some finishing touches (a new rug, slip covers, a huge mirror for our room, and more).

We came home and once the kids were asleep, the Hubs and I put on the first coat of paint.  I was in love the minute the paint touched the wall.  The color was perfect.  We finished up around 2:30am and hit the sack.  The kiddos let us sleep in a little and then it was back to work for us.  We ended up not needing to put on a second coat so the Hubs seriously cleaned the floors while I helped Noah clean his room.  Then we put the new slip covers on the sofa/loveseat, put out the new rug, changed out our outlet covers and switchplates, and hung the curtains.  I'm so happy with the way it turned out!  We're not done yet but we need to save up some more for the finishing touches.  I hate the way our old end tables look in the room so those are next on our "to buy" list along with a new desk, accessories, and a double curtain rod.  I have an idea of how I officially want the curtains to look but need the double rod to make it look right.  I'm also waiting on 2 canvases to come in from Canvas People, I have to order the wall art for above the TV, and I have to decide how I want to make my gallery wall.  But all in all, we're so proud of how our room is and everyone who's seen it so far has loved it.  Now I sit in the room and just smile because how amazing it is!!!

Here's a before picture of the horrible brown couches and ugly green wall (ignore me...this was from way back when for  My Style Mondays)  We also had dark brown curtains to match.  It was like mint chocolate chip ice cream threw up on my living room.
And now, without further adieu, here is our new family room!!!!!
Before the ugly end tables returned to the room
Curtains drawn...they're reversible!!! 
I love this rug!  And Lucky is sulking because I won't let him on the new couches
The walls aren't finished.  I'm waiting for the canvases and I'm putting up shelves where those pictures are.  Isn't the Hubs cute?!?!  He's looking at our wedding album!!!
I just love the room!  I can't say that enough.  But we also put the finishing touches on our dining room.  The dining room was probably the most complete room in the entire house.  I never could find curtains I liked.  We were going to have them custom made until they quoted us $1300.  We quickly nixed that idea.  But enter Lowe's to the rescue!  I found curtains instantly!  The Hubs hung the curtains, moved our candle holder and hung our family tree wall art.  Now I love this room!
please ignore the 3 areas I have to re-spackle and touch up
I just love this room!!!
The curtains I fell in love with....and my sad wine rack
I'm so proud of the Hubs and I for completing our first true home improvement project.  We did it all by ourselves (minus my dad rewiring an outlet and helping to hang the template for the wall art).  We didn't kill each other which is also a plus.  I just love it so much and can't wait to complete the room!!!

Thursday, May 24, 2012

It's OK!!!!!

I just love Thursdays for so many reasons!!!!  It's my clinic day at work (I run the Bone Marrow Transplant clinic on Thursdays).  It means there's one day left until the weekend.  And it's time to link up with Amber and Neely!!!!!

Its Ok Thursdays

It's OK........

~to cry a little when all of your son's artwork that has been hanging in his classroom comes home in his backpack (why is he going to Kindergarten next year?!?)
~to be jealous of the random people at Starbucks who can leave there without spending more than $3 on a cup of coffee
~to have expensive taste in coffee ;)
~to be totally stoked that I not only have a 3 day weekend but a 4 day weekend!!!1
~to be torn between 2 paint colors for our family room (and have them both painted in random spots on all the walls just to see the way they look in all sorts of light
~that I'm looking forward to finally making this house more of a home this weekend (it's about time too since we've been here for 3 years now and I haven't finished decorating it)

~that it took a lot for me to put myself out there with my blog post a few days ago
~to have gotten so much support after that post
~to be blessed with so many amazing people in my life all because of blogging
~to have such a renewed spirit and outlook on life and everything in it
~to really be happy with where I am and who I am at this very moment

I just love my life!!!!


Wednesday, May 23, 2012

For the love of baseball

I love baseball.
I love everything about the game.
I don't quite know when my love affair with baseball started.  I played softball for about 2 years in middle school before finding my true love (volleyball) so I had a pretty good understanding of the basic concept.  My middle school BFF was a huge Atlanta Braves fan and she rubbed off on me.  My dad's good buddy just happened to be the son of a MLB player/St Louis Cardinals coach, so we were exposed to baseball for as long as I can remember.  It was just a part of who I am.  This love just grew even more as I got older.

I followed the Braves forever. When Tampa got an MLB team, I went to the second game (which happened to be the team's first win....and a kinda date with my then "love of my life."  When I met the Hubs, he shared my love of baseball, the Rays, and the Braves.  I even impressed his dad (the biggest sports fan in history) with my ability to read a box score and that I was a wealth of baseball knowledge!  So it was something that we all bonded over.  The Hubs and I spent many nights at the Trop, watching our team lose all the time but enjoying being at the ballpark all the same.  We always have a game on TV every night (until I say I can't take another inning of baseball anymore).  I'm trying to plan trips to the Trop every chance I get.  And now that my boys are good, it makes it even better!  We've been the the first playoff game in Rays history, the first World Series game in Rays history, and we're looking forward to many more firsts for our team.  Eventually when we retire (if we ever retire) I want to have season tickets and go to every single home game.  Number one thing on my bucket list is to catch a game at every MLB stadium...yeah I'm not your typical girl.  I just can't get enough. Oh yeah, did I mention I take Fantasy Baseball very seriously???  Yeah that's me!

I'm so glad I've found someone who shares my love of the game.  It makes for so many great memories and many opportunities to share the love with our kiddos.  It's nice to be able to talk ERA and batting averages with!!!

This weekend, before I was struck down by the wicked wicked stomach bug that's wrecking our house, we caught a game against none other than the Atlanta Braves!!!  I was torn over what team to support.  The last time Atlanta was in town (years ago) I sported my ATL gear but I now have a strong loyalty to our boys here in Tampa so of course I sported my Rays gear.  But in the back of my mind, I knew no matter who won, I was coming out a winner because I just love both teams!!!  I didn't take a lot of pictures but I did get a few of the amazing Chipper Jones.  Baseball will never be the same without him in a Braves uniform!
ATL pitchers....who doesn't love boys in baseball pants?!?!?!?!
The Hubs and I taking in Atlanta's BP....I will catch a HR ball one of these days!!!
Chipper Jones....a huge reason I'm a baseball fan
He signed autographs for at least 30 minutes
I love my Atlanta boys!!!
But not as much as my Rays!!!
First pitch
I wish I could be standing in that batter's box, taking a pitch from an MLB pitcher
Hendrick is fired up about something!
I waited all afternoon for this!!! Fernando Rodney is a BEAST!!!!
I can't get enough of my baseball loving boy!!!!
Here's to a great season and a great life filled with numerous nights at the ballpark!!!!   Photobucket

Tuesday, May 22, 2012

A long time coming

I've been wanting to write this post for a week now but you know how it gets in the way.  And as I've been spending the past 36 hours taking care of my poor sick babies (the Hubs included), I can't help but feel so compelled to write about this.  Let me start by saying that I am not one to openly discuss what I'm truly feeling.  I'm not good with emotional stuff.  I can offer advice to anyone on emotional topics but when it comes to me, I try my hardest to avoid talking about it.  So this is huge for me.  But so vital to the process that I'm going through right now.

A very wise person told me that people who have successful relationships are those people who put themselves out there, 100%, each and every day.  They are vulnerable in every way possible, no matter what the situation.

How true this statement is!  Allowing yourself to be vulnerable is key in a healthy, safe relationship.  This allows you to truly be present, to be in it 100%, to experience everything to it's fullest.  So why then is it so hard for me to do this?  That's all I can think about.  What has made me so afraid to truly open myself up to anyone?  And even more so, why is it so hard to open up 100% to the Hubs?

I'd like to think that I'm 100% in my every day life but let's face it.  I'm not.  With all of the technology out there, it's so easy to get distracted from the things that are truly important.  I used to get mad at the Hubs when he'd complain I was on Facebook or Twitter wherever I was (my phone has made it so handy).  It boiled my blood when he'd say that.  But in retrospect, it's so true.  I'm constantly looking at FB whenever I get a chance.  How much is that taking away from the Hubs and the kids?  There have been tons of times I've told the kids, "hold on, Mommy's almost done" when they've asked me to do something for them or with them.  Want to know what I was doing???  Playing on the computer.  I put the computer above my kiddos.  How bad is that?!?!  {Now I'm not saying I'm not going on the computer anymore...let's be real...Momma needs a little break from time to time plus she needs to keep up with her faves online!  But I am reevaluating things}

My biggest fear in life is failing at being a Mom.  All I've ever wanted to be was a Mom and now that I am one, I know I'm not the mom I always imagined myself to be.  Mostly because the mom I dreamed I would be only exists on TV and in books.  There are not enough hours in the day for me to accomplish everything I ever thought I would.  But I can come as close to that dream as possible.  And while my 2 precious angels are sicker than sick, I'm truly seeing how much they rely on me for everything.  Why not give them 100% of me?!?

And while we're on the subject....why not give the Hubs 100%?  He deserves that for putting up with me on a daily basis.  A great friend told me that I needed to be the best wife I could possibly be to the Hubs.  Those words rang loud and clear.  While I haven't been giving my kids 100%, I definitely haven't been giving our relationship 100%.  It's easy to get comfortable and ultimately get lazy.  And unfortunately, that's where we find ourselves.  We're working on getting back on track and while I'd love to blame the Hubs for everything, I just can't.  I am just as responsible for the state of our relationship.  I've gotten just as lazy as he has. Plus I have that tinyhuge problem with opening up.  But as I've had time to reflect on my life, where things are, and where I want them to be, I've realized that it's not all up to him.  I have to step up.  I have to put myself out there every day.  I have to get over my insecurities because at the end of the day, I'm surrounded by the 3 people who love me the most in this entire world.  Because without those 3 people, my world is empty.

So from now on, that's what I'm doing.  I'm putting myself out there.  100% every day.  100% every time.  I know it will be hard and I know it will be challenging but who say this stuff was easy?!?  God doesn't throw anything at us that we can't handle.  And while it may seem like it is way too much to take, I know that I can handle it.  It's going to be a slow process but one that I'm looking forward to embarking on.

Wish me luck.....

On a side note...Happy 34th Birthday to the Hubs!  I feel horrible that he's so miserable (he got the stomach bug that ripped through our house) but we'll celebrate once everyone's back on their feet again.  I love you Hubs....more than you'll ever realize!!!!

At the Rays game on Saturday (about 1 hour before the stomach bug attacked me)

Tuesday, May 8, 2012

Happy Nurses Week!!!

While this week is National Nurses Week, May 6th was Nurses Day.  This is a favorite week for me because the hospitals I have worked for usually do a pretty good job celebrating the nurses who work there.  This year, ACH gave us all Tervis Tumblers with the ACH/Johns Hopkins logo.  I am a huge lover of all things Tervis (I have no idea why) so I was totally on board this year!  I can't wait to use it!!!  But this week has also given me the opportunity to reflect on my 6+ years in this profession.  And how appropriate that Renee and Anna's link up occurs during Nurses Week!!!  Coincidence?  I think not.  Their link up has given me an opportunity once a month to really share my love of nursing with everyone and today is no different.

Today's topic is Why I Became a Nurse.

I kinda fell into nursing.  I never grew up dreaming about being a nurse.  I was going to be a pediatrician.  I had decided in elementary school that I was going to be a doctor.  Never once did I waiver in this.  I did flirt with the idea of being a physical therapist but never took it too seriously.  When I started my first year of college, I was a pre-med student.  I was plugging along, having way too much of a social life.  I was dating a guy who was taking organic chemistry and thought it was hard.  But I was on the med school track so I had to take it too.  The next semester, I registered, got about 1 week into the course and realized I had absolutely no clue what they were talking about and what I was supposed to be doing so I dropped the course.  That meant saying goodbye to my med school dreams.  I was okay with this because I was quite content with being overly involved in campus life and my job.  But when it finally dawned on me that I needed to actually graduate sometime before my thirties, I had to really reevaluate everything.  I knew I wanted to be in the medical field and I loved helping people so why not nursing?  My mom thought I was NUTS.  I was the girl that couldn't be around people throwing up because I'd join in.  I didn't like blood or needles or any of that.  How was I supposed to deal with all of that on a daily basis?  But my mind was made up and nursing school started a few months later and I've never looked back.  I know in my heart that I was called to be a nurse.  Yes, I said called.  I truly believe that this is God's plan for me and through this, I'm doing His work.  How much more rewarding can something be?!?

People say that work should not define a person.  I choose to disagree.  Being a nurse truly defines me as a person, just like being a wife and mother defines me.  It is the essence of who I am.  I am proud to call myself a nurse and proud of the work I do every day.
My nursing pinning ceremony
Pregnant with Em at work
One of our many parties....I have the best coworkers!
The best patients!
The most amazing angels!
And the best reasons to come to work every day!!!

Monday, May 7, 2012

A Day with the Rays

Have I ever mentioned that I love baseball?  No.  Well I do.  Opening Day is my favorite day of the year (behind my birthday and Christmas).  There's nothing like spending the day at the ball park, watching cute boys in baseball pants play ball!  The Rays have become quite the team in the last few years and the Hubs and I are trying to instill our love of the game in our kiddos.  We have been planning to go see the Braves when they come to Tampa in a few weeks and on a whim, we bought tix for us to take the kids this past Sunday.  I was nervous because Em has never been to a game.  She doesn't have the greatest attention span so I had it in my mind that she was going to be a big pain in the rear.  All week she kept saying how much she didn't want to go (she was going to stay home with the dog and cat) but surprised us on Sunday when she woke up, raring to go.  We got the kids dressed and headed down to the Trop.

To say the kids did a good job would be a complete understatement.  They were AMAZING!  They sat in our seats really well, didn't whine too much, and had a good time.  The game started out great (we jumped to a 4-0 lead) but then it went downhill.  The game was dragging and by the 5th inning, Noah was ready to go home.  So we packed it up and headed home.  All in all, I love that we had a great time and that my kiddos loved it!  I can't wait to take them back to the Trop!!!
Heading up to the Trop
Yes she brought a purse
Love my little baseball lovers!!!
Me and the Hubs
She loves her Daddy
The loves of my life
Keeping themselves entertained...thank god for Androids
Rocking her Joe Maddon glasses and silly bands

And I just have to share a few sweet pics from Sunday night.  Emmy dressed up in her Rapunzel costume and wanted to dance with her Daddy.  I am so glad I caught a few pics of this special moment.
She was so happy!  She was twirling and everything!!!