ETC: Week 40

Hello friends!

I hope all is well! This past week, we made it to 40 weeks! It’s very bittersweet because I am very happy baby girl is fully cooked, but I’m also very anxious to meet her already!

We had a rather busy week and even had some visitors, but still, no baby!

Our 40-week weekend was beautiful; warm and filled with sunshine! Saturday we ran our weekly errands and Sunday we didn’t move until about 1pm. After relaxing all morning, we decided to go on a long walk. We walked down to the lakefront path and took a stroll through Andersonville on the way home. It was nice to reminisce along my old running path. Once Naomi is here and old enough to be in the jogging stroller, she will quickly become well acquainted with that path as well!

I worked from home this week which was extremely stress relieving. Not having to commute on crowded public transportation or worry about my escape route from downtown to up north if labor were to start was a blessing. Also, not having to try and fit in to office maternity clothes was pretty nice. At this point, a few maternity items still fit because they are stretchy, but are they by no means comfortable.

My mom and sister also came to visit this week. Unfortunately for them, when they booked the trip, they had planned to spend time with the baby since it was technically 2 days passed my due date that they would arrive. Joke was on all of us because, Naomi never made her grand entrance into the world.

It was nice to see them both one last time without a baby though. We went to Homeslice pizza one night and Xoco another night. Two places we wouldn’t have been able to check out with a newborn. We also stopped and walked around Oz park. Did you know, the statues can talk to you?!?! You enter a website on your phone then Dorothy or Tin Man will call you and talk to you for a minute or two. It’s a neat idea and I can’t wait to take Naomi to see them, once she’s old enough to understand the hype.

My mom and sister left at the end of the week but booked another stay the first weekend in May. They will be guaranteed to meet Naomi this next time around!

It was also our precious Pumbaa’s birthday this week! He is 7 and I cannot believe where the time went. I adopted Pumbaa when I moved to Whitewater for college and since then, he’s become such an important part of our family. I hope he loves Naomi as much as he loves us. It may take some getting used to, but he’s a cuddly lover so I have faith in him.

We made it the entire week, everyday asking ourselves ‘is today the day?’ We’ve tried nearly every home remedy people suggest and have answered the “where is she” or “how are you feeling” question at least 55 million times (little to no exaggeration on that estimated number). I’m fully convinced that all of these “at home labor inducing tricks” only work if baby is ready and Naomi is just not ready yet.

It’s definitely bittersweet going past your due date. Yes, I am so happy she’s fully developed in my belly, but we are anxiously awaiting her arrival. There’s a sense of frustration that kicks in when you wake up in the morning and realize it’s time to get up for work but you haven’t had any contractions and today may not be the day. However, it’s a blessing to continue feeling her movements. Soon, she will only be able to kick me from the outside 🙂

Currently, I am 41 weeks and 2 days pregnant. Our next update WILL have a baby update because I will be induced at the end of the week if she doesn’t come out on her own. I personally think she just wanted to wait for the month of May because Te’s birthday is also in May; so we have a serious daddy’s girl on our hands! 🙂

We cannot wait to meet our little bundle and I cannot wait to be done with pregnancy! We’ve got quite an exciting week ahead – Stay tuned!!

Until next time..

everything you want is on the other side of fear

Explore: Blogging

Hi friends! I hope you’re having a great week! In honor of my 1 year blog-iversary last month, I’d like to catch up and review my journey thus far as a blogger. It’s quite an exciting, scary, fun, time-consuming feet that has taught me a lot about myself.

When I first started this blog, I wasn’t sure I could do it. Me? Blog? About what? I’m the gal who thinks something one day and then has a brand new, grand plan the next day. How in the world could I ever pick one topic to write about when I just don’t know if there’s ONE thing I can write about all of the time? I mean, don’t you want to hear about my meal prep, my cat AND my trips around the world?

Luckily for me, I figured out a way to start a blog which allowed me to switch gears at any time without a hitch; “Explore. Thank. Create.” was born. I was so scared of what people would think about the blog. I’m not a very strong writer when it comes to grammar and punctuation. I put commas all over the place, or I forget them. I also don’t have a big fancy pants vocabulary, I typically converse in layman’s terms 🙂 Compared to all of the other bloggers out there, why would anyone read MY blog? The fear of what people would think or that my blog wouldn’t be ‘good enough’ held me back from writing for a long time. Until one day, I said forget this, I’m going to do it.

Coincidentally, my first post was about fear, and how you should overcome fear because really, it is pointless. Once I got over the hump, a new world opened up!

I began blogging and tried to post very regularly. Then I realized that didn’t work with my schedule and I went on a few hiatuses before I found a sequence that worked for me. This is another good lesson, don’t let a few weeks of derailment throw you off. Life happens and you get busy, you can always pick up where you left off! 

Anywho, I got to thinking and determined,  so what if people hate my blog? I enjoy writing down my thoughts and having a virtual ‘record’ of some of my experiences. Also, I enjoy sharing my ideas. If you hate it, don’t read it and be on your way 🙂 It’s not about what others will or will not think, it’s about pursuing something of interest to me and figuring out how to make that work with my schedule.

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Have you ever stopped yourself from doing something because you were afraid of what others might think? Did you ever pick it back up or is it still hanging over your head for you to start? (If it’s still hanging, pick it back up and start it! 🙂 )

When people ask me what my blog is about, I typically respond with ‘a little bit of everything’. You see, while I’m on this journey through life in my 20’s, I’m still figuring out what that ONE passion of mine is. What can I write a blog about someday which focuses ONLY on that one topic for each post? I think I’m beginning to figure that out (cough, wellness, cough) but I still really enjoy a variety of topics. (On that note, even the wellness topic has a million directions you can take it!) So I thought, just because some blogs focus on one topic, doesn’t mean every blog has to be that way. Variety is the spice of life, right?

Over the past year I’ve learned a lot about my style of blogging, what I need to do create a blog post, what happens if I’m too busy and most importantly, I’ve learned to let go of fear of not having a ‘good enough’ blog. It’s really just a way I can let my creativity shine and share some vulnerability with the world.

If you’re thinking about starting a blog, or a new hobby in general, but you’re scared of what people might think, start now. Seriously, the best thing you can do is start now. It’s going to take some time to figure out how it works, and you’ll get better and better each time. Don’t let the fear of not being good enough or having enough followers or not knowing exactly what to do stop you from being you!

What hobbies are you going to start today? Or, what hobbies have you recently started? Leave your answers in the comments below!

PS. Get out there and live your life! Take each opportunity as it comes and keep at it! With every new thing you try, you could just find your new passion! You’re doing a great job!!!

Until Next Time..

ETC: Catching Up

Hi friends!

I’ve been on quite the hiatus and I must apologize! I promised I wouldn’t abandon my blog again.. EEK! Life got a bit crazy and unfortunately, I just didn’t have time. Over the next few weeks I plan to catch you up on all of the news and going forward I plan (not promise, but plan) to keep a steady posting schedule.

So where the heck have I been?

As you all know, Te and I got engaged last October. We initially began planning our wedding for October 2016. Throughout the planning we realized it was not what we had expected. We were not having fun, it was unnecessarily stressful, ridiculously expensive and it truly was not what we wanted. We were trying to fit our ‘dream wedding’ into a tiny budgeted box that was defined by the ‘traditional’ weddings you see left and right and it just wasn’t working. Furthermore, we really wanted to take a step for the Lord and put Him first in our lives and a big step in doing that was having the wedding as soon as possible.

So, after we secured quite a few details for our October soirée (wedding venue, deciding (kind of) on a dress, selecting cupcakes, a DJ, a florist, the wedding party and the bar selection) we changed our plans. During the last few days of January 2016 we decided to undo all of our decisions and get married our way. We chose the soonest date possible which would still allow us enough time to notify family and friends and have some time to coordinate. February 21, 2016 just so happened to be that date!

In 3 weeks we whipped together a bridal shower, bachelor/bachelorette party and most importantly, our beautiful wedding. The best part is that we did it our way. Not by the standards of anyone else but us. As you can imagine, those three weeks were EXTREMELY busy and thus, no blog posts were created. Now that it’s over, our lives are getting back into the routine and so of course, I had to pick up ETC once again.

During those three weeks there were a couple amazing things that happened which I didn’t get a chance to write about but, I do promise to back track on those topics. Here’s a sneak peek of what’s to come:

  1. My 3 year Chicago-versary happened on February 11! Yes, people celebrate moving to Chicago. Why? Because it’s an amazing city where you learn a LOT about yourself, others, community, trust, faith, adventure, etc. Also, why not have another day to celebrate something throughout the year? 🙂
  2. My 1 year blog-iversary happened on February 18! One year ago I started blogging regularly. I remember being so so SO scared to open up about a variety of topics. I was scared because I didn’t have one, focused topic. I was scared because, I’m a rambler, not a writer. But I fought my fear and have been working on generating regular blog content ever since. What a journey! More to come on that 🙂

As you might have picked up on, February is my new favorite month. Not only is it my wedding anniversary, my Chicago-versary and my blog-iversary, it is national margarita day, national drink wine day, national dark chocolate day and national tortilla chip day. (I’m sure there will be a blog about February’s greatness to come as well 🙂 )

For now, I look forward to getting back in to the routine of things! I look forward to continue sharing my goals, thoughts, fears, etc with you all. Thank you so much for sticking with me during all of my ups and downs of blogging!

I’m sure I’ll have more posts about the wedding too. Especially once we get our photos back! I will say that it truly was one of the best days of my life. It was exactly what I wanted for my wedding day; I had a Mexican fiesta with our favorite music on the playlist, a bunch of our closest family and friends and a Sunday brunch wedding in Chicago on a budget we could afford. AND most importantly, I got to marry my best friend. It was perfect. Thanks to God for leading Te and I towards this decision and for really pulling through. SO many mini-miracles happened to help the day run smoothly and ensure family could make it and that couldn’t have happened without God.

Ok, but seriously, I’ll write a separate post about the wedding. 🙂

Until Next Time.. (aka next week, I promise…. I’ll try 🙂 )