Monday, December 31, 2012

2012 in a nutshell... {and happy new year!}

2012 was a good year!
It's hard to believe how quickly it sped by, but that seems to be how life is going lately... flying by.
A lot happened this year... and I love being able to look back through my blog and see some of the highlights...

My nephew Adam was born in March...

I attended my first local blogger meet up...

and I hosted another meet up for bloggers in May.

Celebrated my Birthday with my closest friends and family... & TL threw me a surprise party!

My bunco girls and I wrapped up 2 years doing our monthly buncos... still going strong!

I wrapped up my second year working for a non profit - something I love.  I also helped plan our biggest fundraiser of the year in October!

I did some traveling... 
starting with Kauai in February with our friends Justin & Sabrina...

Carmel to visit TL's mama in March

Minneapolis in April for a conference for work with my boss

Maui in June with my family and grandparents...

Los Angeles in July for a girls trip with friends from college

And then we took off to Europe for almost 3 weeks... starting in Helsinki, Finland!

Then to Stockholm, Sweden...

Next stop... Copenhagen, Denmark 

Then off to Berlin, Germany...

And wrapped up our Europe trip in magical Istanbul, Turkey

In December... I made another trip to LA to see the girls

In September... I was able to tell TL the news he's been waiting to hear... we're expecting Baby Lesh, due May 27th, 2013!!!
And on December 12th, we found out this little baby growing in my belly and most certainly already in our hearts is a GIRL!

2012 was filled with many ups and some downs... but overall, it was a year to remember.  I realize more and more as the years go on just how much I love the people in my life.  I feel very blessed and am more grateful than I have ever been.

Thank you for following and reading along on this little journey of mine.  It's hard to believe I have had this little blog for more than 4 years.  It's so wonderful to be able to look back!

I hope you have a wonderful celebration bringing in 2013 CHEERS to a fabulous YEAR!

Thursday, December 27, 2012

Our Christmas

TL and I had a wonderful Christmas - it was definitely one I will never forget.  We were spoiled with delicious food, good company, and lots of thoughtful gifts.  It was such a wonderful 3 day celebration... reminded me why I love this time of year so much.

Our Christmas with his family at his mom's apartment in San Francisco was so much fun... we spent all day Sunday (the 23rd) watching football (unfortunately the niners lost), eating lots of food, and opening presents with his mom and brothers.  It was so nice to just be together with them and because it was raining outside, we felt really cozy inside.  My MIL spoiled us with thoughtful presents.  Our baby girl isn't even here yet, and she was already showered with presents from her grandma!!  We spent Christmas Eve day together and had breakfast and ventured out into the city to enjoy the sunshine.

 The table decor at my MIL's apartment
 Spolied Maximus and LOTS of food... yum!
 A beautiful sunset after a rainy day
Our girl's first pair of Uggs from her Grandma {aren't they adorable!}

Christmas Morning was spent at my parents house with my family.  It was a wonderful morning - we ate breakfast {our traditional green eggs and ham, cinnamon rolls, pineapple, egg with rice, and fresh squeezed OJ}, opened presents, and then spent the morning and early afternoon playing with the presents.  It was so much fun to be with my nephews and see the excitement for them.  My parents were extremely generous this year {like every year} and we were spoiled with so many thoughtful presents.  With 10 of us in the family, we had quite a mound of presents to get through.  

 Christmas morning at my parent's house... the beautiful tree!
 Traditional Christmas Breakfast {my dad is a pro at making green eggs and ham}
 Our girl's first swimsuit... TL and I were dying over it!!
My nephew Adam (9 months)... Ryan was busy playing with all his new presents.

TL and I ended our Christmas evening together at home.  We drove around looking for a fast food restaurant that was open so we could get a milkshake. {thank goodness Jack in the Box was!} We talked in depth about everything in our lives that we have to be grateful for - most importantly, our families.

Spending Christmas with our families was very special. It's truly what the holidays are all about!
I hope you had an amazing week!

Thursday, December 20, 2012

Thankful Thursday

Thankful Thursday...
{sorry, this is going to be a long one}

Last night I stood staring at my tree for a minute or two.  Every year, I try to look at it often, because it make me feel happy.  It's always a reflection to me of how the years pass quickly and if we don't slow down a little bit and be thankful for all the blessings during the year, time will just get away from us.

On this Thursday before Xmas, I am especially thankful for: 

My parents have always been there for all of us, and I know they are two of the biggest blessings in my life.  They've set such a huge example for how I choose to live my life.  With compassion, kindness, love, and a strong appreciation for family.

My sisters... they're more than just sisters.  They're my best friends.  No matter what, both of them would be there for me in a second.  They're my secret keepers, text message buddies, guidance counselors and so much more.

My MIL - in all of her craziness (she reads my blog) :)  I'm thankful for her love, excitement, and generosity.  I am also thankful to have someone who cares deeply for TL and me - and who is there to provide good times and lots of laughs.

My BIL Joe.  We've grown closer this year.  He's got a bigger heart than 99% of this world.  He's a good person and friend.  My wish for him in 2013 is for him to see in himself all of the beautiful and great things his family and friends already see.

My extended family.  All of them.  I am related to LOTS of very special people.  Grandparents, Aunts, Uncles, Cousins, and close friends that are like family (my bff)... they're all a blessing.

I am also extremely thankful for my friends.

My girls and I had a wonderful year - we hit our goal of 3 trips to visit each other - and as usual had the. best. time.  With out these ladies in my life, I wouldn't be whole.  They provide so much love, laughter, good memories, and friendship to my life.

My home-gals who are so much fun at our bunco nights, movie meet ups, and happy hours. 

My dear friend Shannon.  Shannon has taught me a lot about true friendship this year. (Sorry Shan, I am calling you out)  For many, many years, she and her husband tried to get pregnant... and unfortunately were unable to.  They are now going through the process to adopt (and let me tell you, they will be the BEST parents).  When I found out I was pregnant, even through all my excitement, I felt saddened for my many friends who have struggled to get pregnant.  I felt bad sharing my news when I know others haven't ever been able to share their own.  When I told Shannon, she cried tears of JOY.  She has expressed so much love, happiness, and interest in our pregnancy.  I was amazed, truly, by her genuine and heartfelt excitement and love... and by her ability to be happy for me in a time most would struggle to do that.  I hope to be a friend like her to others.  
Please send your good thoughts and prayers for Baby G in 2013...  to read more about her adoption journey, visit her blog.

My Job.
I'm lucky to have a job that allows me the flexibility to do something I am truly passionate about while allowing me the time away to travel with TL.

My home, car, and life's necessities.
I work for a non profit - and a lot of what I do includes service to those less fortunate.  I am constantly reminded of the many "things" I have.  A toothbrush, warm clothing, blankets, a heater... all the things that are so easy to take for granted.  I feel fortunate that I grew up in a home with two hard working parents that had the desire and ability to work hard to provide for our family... not everyone is so lucky.

And lastly, my husband.
This guy makes me truly happy.  It's not always perfect... but he is absolutely my best friend.  I could cry just thinking about the moment he's going to hold our little girl for the first time.  He has such a joy and excitement for life... and he is the king of making others laugh. (especially me)
TL and I have so much to be thankful for this year.  And next year.  And not a single hour of a day goes by that I don't recognize that.

Thank you to ALL of the people who read my blog and send me emails and comments.  I write and share about my life because it's meaningful to me and I enjoy it.  When people tell me they read along, it makes me feel so special.  Thank you.

Happy Holidays to you and your families!!
May your holidays be filled with beautiful moments.

Monday, December 17, 2012

Pinterest Finds

This weekend, I had a few hours of down time and instead of productively filling my time with getting the laundry and cleaning done, I just spent a few hours straight on pinterest.

It's amazing the creativity and ideas that are on that site.  I always finish thinking I need to revamp my whole closet, cook up a storm in the kitchen, and clean my house using new techniques. 
Source: via Tracy on Pinterest

Hope your week is off to a great start!

Wednesday, December 12, 2012

Baby Lesh is a....


We are so thrilled!!  TL has always dreamed of having a little girl (and boy, too) and we are so excited to bring a new little blue eyed girl into the world.

We actually did the ultrasound today so we could surprise our parents with the news (they thought we were going tomorrow) and they were all very happy, too.  We all would have been ecstatic either way... but this will be the first granddaughter for my parents, and the first grand baby (and girl) for my MIL (she has 3 sons!)

Thank you for all of your love and support.  We feel very blessed to have so many people expressing excitement and sharing in our joy with us.

Cheers to PINK!  Let the nursery planning begin......

Bunco Cookie Decorating

This month's Bunco was at my house.
It was a smaller group of us (only 8) because of the crazy month and everyone's schedules... but we had a wonderful time.  We didn't actually play bunco.
Instead, I fixed Taco Soup, made several batches of my mom's famous sugar cookies (thanks for the help mom!) and gingerbread cookies. Paired with a little gift exchange, we just enjoyed each other's company, decorated cookies, and caught up!

I love these girls... it was so much fun and everyone stayed late so we could chat.
{I am not in any pictures... that's what happens when it's your house and your camera.  You're not missing anything ;o) }

Looking forward to another fun year in 2013 with these ladies :)
This wrapped up our second year!

Monday, December 10, 2012

Baby Lesh: 16 Weeks

How i'm feeling: It's all starting to feel "real" now.  With a swelling tummy and the excitement of learning the gender (and name) later this week, I am more and more excited about it all.  We are still so happy and feel extremely blessed to be pregnant.

How far along: 16 weeks

Size of the baby: About the size of an avocado (4.5 inches)

Total Weight Gain/loss: Just caught up to my pre-pregnancy weight (after first trimester morning sickness). It's rushing right to my breasts and belly button.

Maternity Clothes: None yet - some high waisted work slacks aren't very comfy though. 

Gender: We find out Thursday!! So excited - I love seeing & hearing every one's guesses :)

Movement: Not yet - but I lay very still at night before bed just in case.

Sleep: I wake up really early with a mind full of thoughts and often I can't go back to sleep. I have a feeling this probably won't get better as things progress.

What I miss: Taking hot baths!

Cravings: No cravings - mostly food aversions. The only thing that always sounds good to me is fruit.

Symptoms: I get a little queasy at night still and my energy levels are lacking as well. But... I'll take it!! I know lots of ladies who are terribly sick all pregnancy and I feel pretty lucky.

Best moment this week: Finally starting to see a baby bump, knowing the baby can hear our voices now, and the anticipation of finding out the gender on Thursday!!

Hope you're having a wonderful start to your week!

Friday, December 7, 2012

Quick Girls Weekend in LA

It's been way too long since I have seen a few of my girlfriends from college... so on a whim, I planned a quick 2 night trip to fly down and see a couple of them.

We ran shopping and eating at delicious restaurants in Santa Monica (Upper West, True Food, 26 Beach), celebrated Chessy's Birthday with an Ugly Christmas Sweater gathering, and spent lots of time just talking and catching up. 
It was so nice to see them!!

I forgot my camera - thank goodness for my phone (and Lady's) to snap a few pics...

 Shopping in Santa Monica
Blurry picture after our dinner date at Upper West in Santa Monica
Holding sweet Harper (Hailee's babe) at a new restaurant in Hermosa called The Source Cafe. 
 Yummy food from The Source
 Our ugly sweaters!!
The whole group at Chessy's before heading to Bar Lubitsch in LA.

It was a wonderful weekend... looking forward to going back to LA in February to squeeze another visit in before Baby Lesh arrives.

Hope you have a wonderful weekend!!

Monday, December 3, 2012

Hello, December!

I am so happy it's December.  It's one of my favorite months of the year - people are (mostly) in a good mood, the weather is cozier, streets are lit up and I get to wake up every morning to the beautiful tree in our living room.

It's also a good month for football (besides the niner loss yesterday, boo!), friends, time with family and just enjoying the season.

A few goals for this month...
+eat more fruits and veggies
+drink more water
+hit the gym at least 3 times a week
+try at least 2 new recipes
+bake and decorate cookies with friends

I have already finished the majority of my Christmas shopping and am so happy to start wrapping and get it all under the tree.

What is your favorite thing about the Holidays?

PS.  We find out next week if Baby Lesh is a BOY or GIRL... I thought it would be fun to do a little poll (left sidebar) - I am curious what everyone thinks.  :)