Hormones: A Blessing 

Last night was rough. And I woke up today feeling even more rough than I thought I would. My sweet husband was sick yesterday and was even worse off this morning before heading to work. I couldn’t sleep, my thoughts kept me awake… so I stood up making nursing tank tops and watching Netflix until Ian’s alarm went off. I was grateful that I got to make him breakfast, help him get his uniform ready, and get to talk with him a bit. It breaks my heart when he is sick… especially since he is saving all of his time off for when Evie gets here. The sacrifices he makes for our family make my heart swell with a love I can’t explain. 

-Daddy and Bubby at the park in Father’s Day. 
 After we hugged goodbye and he drove off, I tried to sleep. Feeling the coolness of my bedsheets wrap around me was soothing. But soon, multiple  times in that first hour…I woke up with my mind playing tricks on me. It happens often, especially when I’m moderately stressed. I repeatedly startled awake  with my heart racing. I kept thinking I’m hearing screaming, footsteps, someone jumping on my bed or laying next to me… and then a crazy storm happened. Hail crashed against the windows and my first thought was…

“Did Ian get to work safely? I’d better call!”. 

So, bleary eyed, I fumbled for my phone in the dark, dialed, and immediately got his voicemail. Good. That meant he had made it and was starting his day. So, I carefully got up and checked on Brody just in time to cover him up before he got cold. I walked around checking all the windows as bright lightning flashed behind all of the curtains. Thunder boomed and the lightning lit the house in a powerful flashing glow. Moments like those always remind me of God, his angels, and all of His power. It’s comforting at the same time it makes me feels small in this big world He’s created.

– Our morning snuggle routine. 
Just as soon as I tried to sleep again, I was awoken by contractions. The burning drifted down the front of my thighs, around my lower stomach, and then to my back. These were different from the usual, so I said some extra prayers that it wasn’t time for labour just yet. My mind raced more as I lay there calmly, thinking about what would happen if this was IT. They came a couple more times as I tossed and turned and even woke me up as I drifted in and out of sleep. 

– There’s a baby in there! Can’t wait to meet her sweet baby face! 
Now, I lay here resting in bed with my son, who just came in earlier than expected. Thankfully, he is content watching Hulu and is snuggled up in the blankets next to me. My eyes burn, my body aches, my mind is already unsettled, and Iam weary  today. But, I’m alive and my household is well… we are blessed to have such silly problems. Many have so much more on their plates and I am humbled at this thought that crossed my mind often: Change is coming but God will prepare me in due time. 

– Smiling with beautiful innocence.
I haven’t written lately. I’m sure you know that if you take the time out of your day to glance at my thoughts. The last time I wrote, I had realized that I was in a different place. Like I had finally made it to that door that God opens before He closes another. Soon after that last blog, life got BUSY. Busy with celebration, joy, and rest. In between those moments, there was heartache, loss, and challenging times. Even still, those things sting my heart and invade my thoughts often. But I know that all things that come to pass happen for our own good. That we are cared for by a loving God who knows when to prune you so that you and your loved ones can thrive and grow. On this note, I’d like to share that I am grateful for my crazy hormones. Because it’s like seeing through the most eye opening pair of glasses in every experience. You get to see and truly feel everything in ways that can only be understood in that raging and fleeting moment. I think it’s a gift to mothers. It prepares us for what’s ahead when that precious gift arrives and continues on the journey. The vigilant mind, the quick responses, the deep concerns, the ability to go and go and go… all stem from these hormones. It’s like an unpredictable fuel that ignites at a seconds notice that drives us when we need it most. Especially when you feel like you’re on your wits end, ugly crying. It’s a blessing to feel and express those emotions. It’s a blessing to be able to anticipate the needs of others. And it’s an honor to have others lives in your hands. To love and to nurture… is the biggest gift that we’ve been given. We need to remember that because we have been blessed with this kind of love, we need to share it wildly, openly, and repeatedly. 

– Yum! Corn time!
Change is coming in my life again, and I know that the blessings of what feels so messy… is what is so beautiful about life. The bleary eyed mornings, the moments that stop your breath, the heart thumping joy of a first… are all headed my way soon. I welcome the new, gain wisdom from the old, and pray on my way to the future. That’s all I really can do, and I choose to do it with a grateful heart. 
Life is unpredictable, and that’s what makes this journey so colorful. 

– A sleepy Bubby holding his Bluebeary after an afternoon nap.  


What The French Toast? 

Seriously. Where is time going? It feels like the days are flying by! Just the other day the grass was brown and dead… and now there are flowers and green everywhere!! I feel like I blinked and missed something. But, I guess time flies when you’re having fun? Because I have really  been enjoying each day. I feel renewed and like balance is coming to me, finally! 

It’s been a day to day crazy town over here …and I don’t remember the last time I was able to sit and write! So, now feels like a good time :). 

These past couple of weeks Brody has been growing and learning SO much!! He’s talking all the time, dancing whenever and wherever, and keeping me busy busy busy!! The days seem so much brighter now that Ian is home more. I have tons more peace of mind and help with him being home like this. This morning, I’ve been thinking back on this last year and I feel like it’s finally becoming more clear. Like, we have balance, focus, and time for the first time in our ENTIRE relationship!! Brody gets to be with his dad more than ever. THAT makes me truly filled with joy. Joy that I’ve never felt before. And now, I find that I’m not so scared to dream of the future anymore. Because the wind is finally coming back into my sails, I feel it!! 

I’m now officially at the beginnings of my third trimester with Evie! Now that I’m this far, it’s gone by in a blink. Yesterday, I started to really feel myself slowing down a bit. Kind of an emotional realization honestly! Like…. Erin… you’re having another baby… SOON. Ahhhh!!! Every day it becomes more and more real to me. Ever since the beginning, I’ve been terrified. Over so many things. Every single day for a long time, I struggled. Hard. And I’m glad I can now admit that, without feeling a pit in my stomach. Or like I’m on the verge of tears or hiding under a rock. 

I am truly grateful for the progress that I’ve worked SO hard to achieve. I look back and have many mixed feelings about those months and days. At times I thought everything was falling apart. That I wouldn’t be HERE where I am now. But when I see and acknowledge it all, I know God gave me strength every day. I know that he was holding my family together. I never doubted that, but somedays it was hard to let myself feel that. I struggled with anger, letting go, forgiving myself…. a laundry list of things. 

But, seeing the progress and having time, I feel my heart in a new way. Might sound funny to you, but it’s no surprise to me. I’ve always been stubborn. Especially with myself! And I think I’m finally giving myself a much needed break, now that I’m no longer just surviving every day. Truly, inside… that’s how it was. I think that’s why I feel that I’ve blinked and lost so much. But, I’ve learned from every day. Every thought, cry, meltdown, frustration, and desperate prayer. And today, I’m here. My family is thriving. My house and heart is full of love. My husband has new drive and life in him. My son is getting crazier and bigger every day. And me and my baby girl are resting, eating well, and at more peace than when we started. 

I look back to the struggles over my life and I’m grateful for it all. From being a child, the struggles of understanding my parents divorce, being the only girl, finding my way through relationships, and becoming an adult in the working world, it’s been crazy. I know everyone has had struggles in their lives too at some time or another. I think the journey of life is powerful, mysterious, and beautiful. Through all the pain, hope, love, and heartache… I’m surprised more of us aren’t totally bonkers. I know we are all learning as we go. I’m grateful for the lessons I’ve had even though I chose the hard way OFTEN. Today, I sit here reflecting, and I see all the worth in the pain. I know I will have plenty more to learn in my life… but I feel like I’ve stepped into a new world today. And I can’t be thankful enough. For all of it. 

Spring Time Fever 

It’s finally officially SPRING!! So, I thought I would catch up on some blogging. Because, I swear this has been the busiest time of my life so far! It’s probably helping me prepare for how busy we will be once Evie gets here! 
Anyways, I am SO excited that April is almost here!! Not only for the weather but husband will be home during most of the day, everyday!! And, he is going to be part of a weight loss competition at work with his dad. We are super excited about this! It’s a 12 week challenge and I’ll be participating at home just for the extra nutritional part. Plus, getting some exercise  in will be great for me and the baby this last bit of my pregnancy! But the best part, is that we will all get to do this together. I’m excited that Brody will get to participate during exercise as he wishes, and hopefully begin a positive outlook while he’s young! Ian really can’t wait to give this all he’s got! 

-Busy guys, working on the yard! –

For the first time in or lives together, I feel like everything is brewing up the perfect storm for our family. I’m home full time, Ian has a job with great hours, and our home is finally more settled! No more waiting tables or late nights coaching or extra jobs to go do! And since Ian will be home for more meals, making food choices will be easy. Mostly because we can cook together! Which is always more fun anyways!! 

-Newly madeover prep area! I’m in love! All of my spices are uniform and easily in reach! Wooo! –

So, we’ve already got a solid plan down. I’m not as exhausted or as sick as I was, and I’m grateful to be leading in the kitchen. Ian and I will be sharing daily meals, recipes, and progress on Instagram! Starting April 1st, the first day of the competition.

 Find us > @undefinedrawra and @ian.barnes23 to join us or see what we’re up to!  

So far, we are just getting deeper into our previous plans, with renewed purpose! We will be following a plant based Whole Foods approach with daily juicing. Basically, nothing from animals, no processed or refined foods, less salt, no alcohol, and little caffeine. Which leaves only good things like fruit, veggies, grains, beans and legumes, and nuts and seeds. Lots of water and herbal teas as well! Tons of nutrition for better functioning bodies! 

Ian plans to pair this lifestyle with yoga, strength, and cardio training. I’ll be joining in with modified ways of exercise too! But, I figure I’ll lay down some of our reasons why. Why this exact plan? 

First and foremost, we want to do this for our kids. We want to help create healthy lifestyle choices early so they have less of a chance of having our struggles. Children who eat less refined/ junk foods and more nutrient dense foods grow stronger, have more success in school, and have an easier time focusing and learning in everyday life. I want our kids to grow up making good choices and having confidence in themselves. With obesity rates going up in children, the gift of health is truly more important than ever. 

-Mr. Active Bubby!-

Secondly, we have financial goals. By choosing to cook at home and eat out less, we hope to save money. We have goals for getting out of debt! On average for our family, eating a meal out ranges from $40-$70 each time. That adds up pretty fast! And that’s a good chunk of what could just be grocery money over a week! 

Next, our own personal goals of course. I want to be strong, healthy mentally, and recover quickly for my babies. I have clothes I want to fit into that are waiting for me. I want to have energy and get the most out of the life I’ve been given. I want to be able to navigate my body as comfortably as possibly, with less aches and pains. And overall, prevent myself from struggling with preventable disease. I want less acne breakouts,  more flexibility, better endurance, and to be strong and confident in myself. 

For Ian, he has goals for work as well! He wants to become a part of specialized teams. He wants to have more energy, become strong, get into clothes he bought, and become mentally stronger too. He has goals of completing competitions like the Tough Mudder and The Spartan. He wants to have less aches and pains. And of course have renewed confidence and comfort in his own skin. 

Lastly, because this makes the most sense for us. No depriving. Less prep time and precautions during cooking. Less of a moral dilemma about consuming animals and how that effects our Earth. And more benefits than any other “diet” can give us. Better skin, hair, nails, recovery, sleep, moods, motivation, strength, longevity, and overall health. 

-New open shelving making my life SO much easier! And! Honey got my plants a new home in the window! Yay! –

So, I just thought I’d let you all know! Because we have goals and maybe you do too! If you want to do this together, check out our journey and help keep us on track too. Life is short, so why not go for a better you? Why not eat more good and less bad? The benefits outweigh everything else. Even if you just want more veggies in your life, we are here to support you too! 

And with it finally being springtime, I’m ready to get out and into the sun! I can’t wait to get a garden started and soak up all the newness that’s about to happen! I’ve got spring fever and I’m tired of house projects! Well… not really but… it’s time to get out and be a part of nature again. 

Thanks for reading everyone! Add us on IG if you’d like. I hope you’re all awesome! 

Healing Feeling 

Hello lovely people! After a little thought and soul searching, I did a thing. I made a new Instagram account. I know, exciting right?! (Sarcasm hint hint.) 
I’ve been thinking today, because today feels different somehow. I think it’s time to reconnect a little and share my life more than I have lately. This blog won’t be terribly long, but I thought I would outline a couple of my thoughts. What are my goals? What is my focus? How can I be my best self? I think a good start is sharing and connecting with others. 
I want to impact others. I want to be a friend again. I want to meet new people. I want to grow. I want to be challenged. I want to move forward. I want to make progress daily. I want you to get to know me. I want to get to know you. I want to do this round differently. I’ve had time to step back and breathe. Life got crazy. 
I still feel disconnected with myself somedays. And with people. I struggle all the time. I don’t have anything really together. But, right now, this is me. I think the next step in figuring my life out, is stepping back into something. So, if you want to connect with me, I want to do things differently. Let’s see how this goes. 

Find me on Instagram > undefinedrawra  Erin Barnes 

To Those That Love Me

To anyone who knows me on a personal level, this is for you. I want to apologize. I’m not sure where to start or how many of you will read this… but I just wanted to tell you that I love you. That this was the best way I can manage, for now. 

I want you to also know that I miss you. I apologize for my distance. I apologize for missing out on your lives. I apologize for my reserved life. I apologize for keeping to myself. For not calling. Not visiting. Not inviting you in. I don’t really know exactly how to say everything, but I feel that you deserve this from me. Because, I love you. 

Some days I don’t quite understand the fullness of everything that has happened. But at this moment, the thoughts running through my head make sense, and I thought you should know. 

I’m not the same person I was. Since October, I’ve changed and I’m still finding out how to adjust to my new self. I’m different because my life drastically came to a halt the night I thought I would never see my son grow up. Then, after 3 weeks of waiting by his side, day after day wondering if he’d ever be all right, I changed even more. I know that no one can truly understand what my situation is. Perhaps that’s part of the reason I shut myself away. Because I didn’t know what to do. Some days I still don’t. But, because I know that I really am loved, I want to well you this. 

I’m sorry for the dreams we had, that didn’t come true. I’m sorry for the opportunities that you gave me, that I didn’t complete. Im sorry that I left. I’m sorry that my capacity for interaction has been made over. I’m sorry that I haven’t reached out. Because, I couldn’t hold myself together. I fell apart hard. I had no idea how to cope and I’m challenged from day to day, thinking about what I’ve missed. 

Right now, because of everything that’s come to pass, I’ve had to stop. Just so I could keep from falling apart completely. Because, my son is my world. Because, not only does he need me… I need him.  I can’t go back to the way I was, ever. Because there were many long days that I wondered if I would ever get to keep him. If I would ever get to hear him speak to me. If I would ever get to take him home. If he would make it through the night. If I would have to put him in a casket.
 But by the grace of God, and only God … I have him now. I have realized many things and have needed time to try to understand. At this point, there are still things that I don’t. 

I’ve struggled with coldness. Anger. Guilt. Grief. Confusion. Deep depression. Anxiety. Acceptance. And many other emotions that I can’t really comprehend some days. I’m sorry. To those of you that love me. I’m sorry, that I haven’t been able to really figure this out. 
I hope you’ve been patient with me. I hope you still love me. I’m sorry if I’ve disappointed you. I’m sorry if you’ve lost respect for me. I’m sorry if you no longer believe in me. 

I can’t really put into words, where my heart is. But, I know that right now, I need my son. I need to breathe in his beauty. His warmth. His life. I need to hold him. I need to be here. Loving him, and not missing a thing. Because,  that’s the only thing that keeps me together some days. Him, my husband, and God. 
I’ve had to say goodbye to a lot of things, because my plate was overflowing. I’ve left many things unfinished. I’ve cried and beat myself up many times and many nights over the choices I’ve made. But, the path that I’ve been given hasn’t been easy, and part of that is because of me. I apologize. 

I don’t really know how to end this. But, I needed you to know. That I spend a lot of time thinking of you. All of you. I lay awake at night thinking about how I could’ve done things differently. Some day, I will fix this. I promise to you. But, for the time being. I’m going to try to be the best mother I can. I’m going to find myself eventually. Because I’m not who I once was. And I hope you can understand, and still love me. Because right now, I’m trying to make sense of things that I’m not sure I can. And I hope you’ll be patient with me. 


Busy Bees

Here and there and things everywhere… my house is back to chaos. But! It’s progress chaos! The best kind! I took a break (kind of) and filled my tanks for more action. Thanks to Pinterest…. I’ve got more new missions under way! But first… some big news!! 

Meet Evelynn Violette Barnes! That’s right… I’ve been cookin’ up a baby girl!! And I can’t believe it!!! This will be a whole new kind of new! And my heart is just so grateful! And nervous … yikes!! A girl… a girl… I’m in love all over again! 

-She’s got her little hand up by her face. Hello world! –

Sooo of course I am SO excited about the little baby headbands I’ve been seeing!! And glitter… and cheeta print… and turquoise… and ruffles… and lace… I hope we won’t be swimming in pink… 

Now, Brody will have a little sister and a best friend for life! I am really excited about this because my brother and I are best friends! There’s nothing like family! And I am so grateful ours is growing! 

-My brother and I at Brody’s 1st birthday. It’s almost been a year!-

So… I’ve been racking my brain on how I’m gonna do this whole new baby thing all over again. Naturally… I turned to Pinterest! So I’ve been reading up on tips and other moms experiences! But for the last couple of days, I’ve really been tuned into Brody. He is talking up a storm!! So I decided I need to keep this burst of learning up and excelerate it! Thus, I stumbled onto the Montessori style of learning! And I am SO excited about!! 

  • Basically, a woman named Maria Montessori revolutionized early learning education with a very simple approach: Follow the child. Montessori fosters independence and gives freedom for learning through concentrated work (play/exploration). This approach is set up through five simple categories for the child that can be done at home from birth! These are Practical Life, Sensorial, Language, Mathematics, and Culture. The best way to implement a Montessori style of learning is to bring your home down to the child’s level. Thus, Montessori stations will now become a part of our home! Each room will have a place where our babies will be able to be involved in daily activities in a safe way. So, I started with Brody’s room! And have set my sights on creating an art/music/learning room in our spare room! These past couple days I’ve made a good amount of progress towards our beginning Montessori goals!

Here’s what I’ve been working on and my brain is SO happy! Here are some before and afters of Brody’s room! We will make some changes as our new Evelynn gets here of course! 

-Lots of toys and things weren’t accessible. Aaaaand of course unorganized and driving me crazy!-
-the crib and recliner will stay the same but felt crowded by the high up cube shelf on the right.-
-Clothes that needed to be sorted hanging and up top. Extra clutter and toys needed to be dealt with. I wasn’t in love with the changing station situation.-

So here are the befores. I recently just redid this room last week but I still hated it. Mostly because I needed time to purge and organize and thanks to Montessori driving me… I have it much closer! I didn’t get pictures of the entire process but the first thing anyone ever tells you is… take everything out first. So I did! 

-Finally got to sort through the dresser and closet!  We filled a giant box and a couple of bags full of old clothes. How did he grow so fast?!- 

-Toys have been organized and put in an orderly fashion. Sorted by activity/type. Brody is playing with his things WAY more often. Yay!-

-SO much more room and comfort! No more disorganized looming cube shelf! –

-No more yucky clutter in the closet! And the dresser is completely organized with the lower drawers accessible to Brody. Soon, we will work on learning to dress and undress on his own :).-

-So happy and organized. Now, Brody has it easier seeing what there is to do!- 

I LOVE how bright and clean everything is! A huge key to Montessori (and a good peaceful environment) is neat and organized. This is important to keep things clutter free and to give your child clear choices for play. Puzzles are to be deconstructed, everything (reasonable) in reach, and the child is to be free to do as they must (in a safe environment). Uninterrupted concentration during play and exploration is key for little ones to learn and thrive! Of course, there will also be some guided activity as well. But, children have been sorely underestimated. They don’t need us adults constantly doing things for them and can figure out many things on their own and in their own way. So I say, let them learn! I’ll be there to help if they do need it :). 
So, I’ve been working on getting stations figured out in the house so we can start discovering. We have the makings of a washing station! We just need a pitcher, bucket, and a towel hook. Oh, and I’m going to paint it as well :). 

-A Child sized place to brush teeth and hair, wash face, and hands. This will go in the hallway by our bathroom with a potty. Soon!-
Then, we plan on creating a place in the kitchen for Brody to get his own snacks. We will also practice simple skills like cutting and mixing. There, he will also have access to his table ware and learn to set a table for himself and guests. Ian made a table the other night so he can have a good place to sit and eat and whatever else he needs at his level :). 

-Perfect Bubby sized table made with love! Just needs some paint.-

-Bubby “helped” a little- 
So far, he loves it and has been using it often! He is starting to try to pour liquids back and forth as well. Of course this is a perfect opportunity to learn how to clean up messes as well…

-Wiping up the spill like a pro! –
And of course I’m starting to figure out different activities during the day for Brody to keep his mind growing. And of course get some energy out!

-Brody the Dragon Slayer!--Brody the artist.--Brody the builder.--Brody the problem solver.--Brody the color sorter.-
I’ve been having a blast doing so much with him lately! And our new naptime/ bedtime routine is going incredibly smooth! Most days I take a mid day break and every evening I get extra time with Ian. I’m so grateful! Soon, we will start working on earlier timing… which makes me a little nervous! I’ve never been a morning person sooo it’ll be new territory for me as well. Though, I only see benefits for our coming challenges as parents to a newborn. With our toddler (how did that happen?!) busy learning and on a good schedule, our lives should be as “smooth” as can be. Then, Ian will be home during days and life will be very different, new, and fabulously weird! I am excited and counting down the days! 

-Kickin back and watching a show in his room. Giving mommy a break?! I love our Vivint security cameras! –

Soooo, on another kind of related note, the hallway. The only way the washing station would fit in the hallway is if I redid the hallway closet. So I did that yesterday :). And then later last night husband helped me take down the shelves that were there looming over everyone! I am SO happy with how much space is there now 😍. But, during the process of clearing out the closet yesterday… I heard dripping. I opened the door to the water heater to find it leaking all over. Ahhhhhh!!!! So, in-laws to the rescue!!! Because Ian was at work! I called his mom (yay!) who called his dad, who got off work in a hurry to come help me. Phew!!

-gross and scary!!- 

Thankfully, it wasn’t worse than it was and got replaced last night. Thank you Matt, Aaron, and Ian!! And Laura and Heather for keeping Bubby and I company during the process! I don’t know what we would’ve done without your fabulous help! This morning we enjoyed quickly heated water! And it didn’t sound like boulders were falling through the house anymore! Wooo!!! 

So, gaze upon the progress! 

-Yucky horrible closet with things stuffed anywhere they’d fit. Most of the stuff was in there from day 1 of us moving in lol. Ahhh!!-

-Terrible looming cabinets! Stuffed full of bins of things too… didn’t spend time to take a picture lol.--All empty and ready to be redone.-

Voila! All redone a few hours later, despite the water heater business! I sorted and separated things destined for yard sale or storage in the garage. Then I found all of our bed sheets that are actually for our master mattress (woo!). Then got diapers, (the beginning of) clothes for Evie, diapers for Evie, our baby bath, 1 diaper bag, and the baby carriers all in the bottom. Towels, baby bedding/blankets, hygiene products/medicine, extra baby hygiene stuff, and lastly irons/tp all stored happy and organized!! This freed up the cabinets across the hall! And extra bins… And gave me a chance to put old things out for our sale pile. I can’t wait for spring and our yard sale… the garage is getting a little full…

-sale stuff. Get outta the house!! –

-Bye bye cabinets! Makings of the washing station! Just needs paint and some odds and ends … and a potty for the Bubby.-

So, today I’m lefts with odd projects to figure out. But, every day I feel a step closer to peace of mind and preparedness for Evelynn to come. I feel her kicking much stronger these days. I’m getting up often to use the bathroom again (sigh…). I’m getting another wave of morning sickness?! But, I still feel full of energy and drive! And my excitement grows more with each new day that we get closer to meeting our new little one. Brody’s birthday is coming up in May (yikes!!) and we’ve got to start planning for that too! My mother is coming to visit at the end of this month and I am super excited! Brody is down for a nap right now… and there’s quiet. I think I’ll nap too! 

Thanks for reading!!! 

I’ll Have a Cup of Tea

-Tunnel at the park!-

It’s been a busy little while since I’ve written and I’m grateful for everything accomplished! Last night I tackled about 85% of a huge project that’s been on my mind constantly. The baby’s room!! I am SO happy to be making progress! All the furniture is rearranged, both recliners in there (mine and Bubby’s, and the closet/changing station is redone! Plus, extra “big toys” have been rerouted to the garage for summertime use. There is TONS of space! I even got  Bubby’s tv in there finally!!! Last things to do are deep organizing like sorting clothes, painting, hanging the tv, clearing the top of the closet shelf, hanging a curtain, and going through the toy tubs again. This set up makes so much sense I don’t know why I didn’t think of it before? I mean… I’ve only rearranged in there about 10 times so far! This one is definitely gonna stick, until we move the other crib in there :). But, until that day comes, we plan on setting the new crib up in our master bedroom for a while. With all of our crazy clutter out of our bedroom, there is more space than I realized! It’ll be perfect ❤️. 

-Supervising mom painting the bathroom…-

So, since I’ve written last, I’ve tackled quite a bit! Painting, sorting, moving furniture, purging, reorganizing, driving my husband nuts etc. I plan on getting most (if not all) of my small doable projects done before Barnes baby #2 gets here. I want the last couple months of my pregnancy to be super easy, unlike how crazy I was with Brodderik. Lol! The “nesting”bug was BAD. Though… hubs and I were chatting last night… I think I started off “nesting” while he says nope. I’ve been “PROJECTING”, and “NOT resting”…and a little crazy. Okay, he didn’t call me crazy but I could see it in his gorgeous blue eyes. Definitely cracked me up! But I realize, I am in such a better place than I was last time. I am grateful for the energy and health I have presently. Yay! Eat your veggies!!

-makings of my first ever attempt at Spanish rice. It was AMAZING!-

This week, I feel more and more at ease. I’m making good progress with my skin routine. I’m cooking new things. I’m relaxing more. And I’m less stressed, as more things get done. The Hubs and I are getting back on our feet after the financial tolls of Brody’s accident, finally! And our lives are about to change drastically in April!! Why? Because Ian is moving to a different shift at work and will home during the days!! Seriously, this will be HUGE! And I am SO excited for him!! 

-Waiting for daddy to come home last night-

There will be big adjustments in sleeping schedules but I’m working on getting a head start on that this week with Brody. We are working on a good routine of waking up earlier, eating at more consistent meal times, better napping times, bathtimes, reading/quiet time, and earlier bedtime. Ian and I are getting more relax time (with Brody sleeping earlier), and I can feel Ian’s stress getting much easier for him. The best part of this new change will be that Ian will get to spend TONS more time being a dad! Especially with the new baby! 
He won’t have to miss the milestones and will be there for those beautiful moments for both of our kids. I’ve wanted that SO badly for him, and very soon it’ll be a dream come true! He and I won’t know what to do with ourselves! Our entire relationship, he has worked SO much and so hard, and for a long time I did too. Now, we will get to go to the park together and play with Brody. He will have time to go for runs with the dog like he’s always wanted to. We will get to eat more sit down meals as a family and cook together as well. I have a feeling we are going to be unstoppable! Or drive each other crazy, ha ha! Maybe both at the same time? Either way, I welcome it all! I get to have my best friend home more than ever, and my heart is so thankful. And of course, I’ll get more fun husband time! Yay! 

-Ian’s first mud mask. Lol!-

So, as I sit here now quietly on the couch sipping my tea, I feel at ease. My favorite music is softly playing through the house. Brody didn’t cry or fuss as much for today’s nap time and is sleeping soundly. I’m about to cook some lunch and try some new recipes. The laundry is my project today! And rest is my other. I feel like for the first time in many years, I can start to truly rest. My thoughts, my worries, my fears, my constant battle…. and I am grateful. Renewing of the mind. Mindfulness of the soul. And transformation of habits. My path looks more clear and my heart is lighter. Thank you to anyone for your prayers, thoughts, and love. Healing takes a while, but it’s coming. 

-when did he get so darn big?-

On top of projects and all that madness, I’m finding time going by very quickly. Today marks 19 weeks and 1 day. My stomach is getting nice and round and I’m feeling more movement when I’m actually still. My craving for the past couple days has been cream puffs. Slightly still frozen cream puffs from Walmart. My wonderful husband went to get me some the other night… and they were out!! I literally cried over the phone when he told me. And today… that is still all I WANT!! I’m going a little crazy so I hope to get some soon. Sigh… besides that, I’m grateful that I have had really good energy! I haven’t needed naps as often (for now), and I have had a relatively good appetite. My daily treat is some of my favorite mint medley tea and some skin icing. I swear on the aroma therapy that comes with that! Because having a heightened sense of smell is usually NOT fun! 

My cats are relaxing around the house, my plants are in the sunlight, my favorite candle is lit, and my snack is delicious! What can today bring? So far, peace and contentment. 

-Laundry, rice bowl, and tea.-

-Lulu Belle in the soft light.-

Wednesday is the big day for our new baby! Ian and I are still back and forth about a reveal thing. As we get closer, I’m thinking I just want simple. After all, that’s how I’m leading my life now! And, I’ve finally started to let myself dream about having a boy or girl. I haven’t wanted to get my hopes up for either one! But, the other day we walked through the baby clothes at the store and UGH the most adorable things popped up for girls. But, I’ve been dreaming about having a boy. I’ve been thinking about different names. Wondering and fantasizing about what they will look like or be like. I can’t wait to hold my new baby. Soft, warm, beautiful, and perfect. I often hear music that brings me back to those brand new days with Brody. I cry often. I let myself feel. I smile and laugh as much as possible. I try not to let my worry or sadness get to me like it used to. As the warmth of the sun starts to come back I feel myself gaining strength and power over my struggles. 

-smells like sun and fresh dirt. Two of my top favorite scents!!-

All I know is, whatever we decide for Wednesday, I’m getting cake. Chocolate cake. Yes. And cream puffs!!!!!!! And then, the real planning begins!!! Oh goodness… 

Those Good Feels


Well! Last night was a long night! And I woke up to some strange dreams (yuck!) that left me in a funk to start off the day. I walk into the kitchen to husband making waffles!! He also made potatoes and got some sausage for a yummy treat. It was noon (ahh!) by that time and Bubby was still snoozing. I have no idea what time I actually fell asleep but Ian tells me that he and Bubby were up until 4 AM!!!! Poor baby was having some serious struggles! That was the first time in forever that he’s has a night that bad. It seemed to have started with a nasty nightmare and he was so distraught and worked up…he couldn’t sleep. I am SO thankful for the help of my husband. I was TOAST!!! So, walking into the kitchen to fresh breakfast right away was SO sweet!!! 
Brody was in a fabulous mood and ate really well! He even stole some of my food too! Even Ian was super ornery and sparky, which made me smile. I on the other hand, felt like a pile of yuck. I’m getting less and less comfortable during sleep now. Last night the new baby must’ve been stretching out all over, because I had a heck of a time! Plus the nightmares… of course crazy ones involving family. I definitely was zoned out and not too chipper. By the time breakfast wrapped up, it was time for Bubbys well-baby appointment! Sooo, we scrambled around a bit. Ian and Bubby pumped up some music and were dancing a lot, which was super adorable and hilarious! I could feel my mood improving, which was much needed. I got a good hot shower and then tried out Skin Icing (gasp!) and LOVED it! More on that later! 

-Busy thinking?-

So, we get out to the appointment and everything went fabulously. Our family doc said Brodderik looked great and of course we got to chat about the battery incident. Man, it’s never going to not be weird thinking about it! Let alone chatting with more doctors about it. But, seeing Brody coopoerate well was really nice, however a little emotional for me. He pointed at the stethoscopes and then motioned to his heart. He knew exactly to sit perfectly still and was excited to see the thermometer and the kart machine. The nurses at Children’s would let him play with the buttons. Definitely mixed feelings, but Ian got to come with us so that was very comforting! As usual, Brody got a new book for the visit and he was super excited to carry it around. Things like that make me smile and feel how sweet and fun his innocence is . Lately, he’s been very interested in reading and he even brings me books so we can sit down and read together. I think I’m doing something right? I don’t often get that feeling but lately, I’m grateful to see light bulbs going off for Brody. He’s saying tons more words now! It’s so fun and surprising! Finally! He’s learning  English, (lol)! The other day, he found some headphone and plugged them in, then started music on my phone!! 

-Mr. Smarty Pants Baby-
On another note, I think Ian and I have made a breakthrough. It was only last week, but it’s made a huge impact on us already. These past couple years have been very staining for us and then after Brody’s accident, life has been completely different. We’ve both struggled together and separately with what’s happened and coping has been a battle. I don’t think I realized how much hurt was present until Ian and I got to talk one night. I cried… he cried… but, I think we healed. In a new way.  I think since then, we’ve been on our way out of the complicated chaos of our hearts. I am so grateful for the transparency and the vulnerability between us. Though, it was a serious mountain to climb. I realized… that both of us have been living with guilt. Both of us felt that we were at fault. And both of us didn’t know how to overcome the trauma alone. I think we tried to be strong for each other, but alone we suffered. Now that we’ve had some time to see and to speak, we are in a new place. 

-A not so selfie ready Bubby. Salty face!-

This time is different. I can see how much brighter and happier my husband is. How much a burden has been lifted and how free his heart is becoming. I feel these things too, and I feel like we are closer each day that goes by. Like we are entering a new chapter with renewed spirits and love for each other. I feel giddy and lovesick for him like when I first met him. Did I mention that our 7 year mark just passed? My mind is spinning! My life is more clear now than it’s ever been, and I am grateful. I could never have ever asked for a more amazing person to be my best friend. 
Ian has given me the love and freedom to be Me. And, I understand so much more. With that, I’ve realized a lot about who I am. I love my life! I’m excited about things! I feel like learning again! And I’ve spent time doing that. I look forward to what’s coming and I’m stronger than ever. I think that it’s becoming contagious. Because lately, there’s been a big change in Ian. And, when he talks about his excitement for our new baby…I just melt!!! And seeing him run around with Brody just makes me love him more. Is it possible for someone’s heart to burst? From all these good feelings? 

-Out and about!-

In addition to that, I’ve got some fun things to share. Like health and beauty stuff, ha ha! Sooo today, I’m super excited! I got to pick up my activated charcoal!! Tonight the hubs and I are going to try out a mask! Yay! Anywho, as you know, I’ve been working on an all natural approach to healing my skin. I stopped wearing makeup in the process so I wouldn’t complicate the process. But, alas! I wore some makeup a couple days in a row and realized it was just seriously not working out for me. I noticed a couple new breakouts trying to get started. Ugh…and I noticed that my foundation no longer matched my skin as well as making me oily and shiny? Obviously, time to pitch it! So! I spent a couple hours finally getting a project done! I purged more unneeded products and things and made a suitable vanity space. My brain is SO happy! All of my makeup is now in sight, organized, and simplified! Along with my jewelry and accessories! Voila! 

This is such a relief for me! I realized I didn’t have a good space to do my makeup when I went out the other night. So here it is!! 

All of my lip products, then some eye shadows, a place for my extra glasses, then pencils, mascaras and eye products, bobby pins, and clippers/tweasers/files. 

In the middle I have a two sided mirror, some brushes, and my prettiest jewelry. Oh! And a picture  of me and my honey with a bear he got me on Valentines one year. 

Lastly, I’ve got essential oil blends for skin care, new (matching) liquid foundation, setting powder, blemish correcting primer, rosewater glycerin mist, stretch mark cream, hair Oil, face powder palettes, various brushes, eyeshadow compact, primers, and all natural make up removing wipes (infused with frankincense and myrrh.) 

Right above, I also have my essential oils organized and easily accessible. Not all from doTERRA, but the box is fabulously handy (thanks Laura!). Lots of amazing benefits! What do I use Oils for? Tons of stuff! Skin care, mood, fighting sickness, home cleaning supplies, perfume, cleansers, deodorizing the house, prayer/meditation, and any new thing possible! 

As far as new makeups, I feel kinda lame but super happy! I was never one to spend a lot of time checking out what different brands offered what. I never had the time to just explore and figure out what really worked for me. As I got older I’d buy something different when something ran out. My skin has also bounced around tons throughout the years! Now that I’m a mama to be again, I’m facing hormonal skin aspects. So, I was nervous to buy new but I always keep an open mind. Until I can have a little extra to spend on the makeup I have in mind, I found E.L.F. and I’m ecstatic! I know it’s been around a while, but I’ve never tried it! So here’s what I found! 

First off, yes that is a Bubby foot. He was excited to help me unpack everything! I realized later that those piggies made it in the shot, but it was too adorable to delete! 

So, I purchased 2 different mascaras, 2 different foundations (on accident, 1 is wet n’ wild and the other is covergirl lol), a setting powder, a blurring foundation brush, a lip plumper/primer, a lip exfoliator, a blemish correcting primer, a color correction palette, and a blush/contour palette. And I didn’t spend a fortune! Under $80 for all of it! E.L.F. Believes in providing quality makeup that doesn’t cost an arm and a leg. The mascara? $2. Yes. $2!!! I tried it today, and it is fabulous! Perfect lash separation, no clumps, no flaking, easy volume, and great lengthening! Everything a woman wants in Mascara!! 

Also, last night after feeling some inflammation rising up on some wannabe breakouts… I made skin icing cubes! Read about the fabulous benefits here > 


I found a recipe for tea and essential oils. So I used my favorite mint medley tea, patchouli, and tea tree oil. I combined it all and froze it overnight! When I used a cube after my shower today I was super refreshed! And those new pimples? The swelling and pain stopped, the redness lessened, and they are going away! Seriously, read up and try it out for yourself! Using oils not only medicates and treats your skin, you also get amazing aromatherapy all day! Win win! There are tons of combinations you can try for less wrinkles, better pores, less breakouts, and brighter smoother skin! I did this before applying my makeup and my skin has felt amazing all day. My makeup even went on super smooth! I am a fan! 

– ready to give a fabulous medicated ice facial!-

So, tonight, I’ll Skin Ice again and enjoy some new tea the hubs got me called Mama To Be! Then put on a charcoal mask, and lay around and watch Ian play video games. Cozy, pampered, happy mama. 

– Yummy!!!!! Contains raspberry leaf, nettle, spearmint, ginger, oatstraw, rose petals, lemon balm, and chamomile.-

– 1lb of activated charcoal! – 

Also, I’m in love with Shea Moisture’s products! All natural and free of yucky stuff! I’m going to try out their African Black Soap, for my lazy days. Plus, I’ve incorporated rose water too! Just as well, grape seed oil is great for mixing with essential oils for massage and skin care. Just thought I would share about these gems! 

How bout a goodbye baby selfie? 

Thanks for reading!! 

Winter… Yuck. 

Oh Colorado. I know it’s now February and that I was just fooling myself with dreams of spring. You can’t really blame me! January really gave us some beautiful warm days there at the end. However, those dreams are buried under inches of snow and black ice all around town. Thanks… thanks for reminding me that you are still a crazy cold month. Reality check taken. 

– Thank you side walk salt-

Today, I’m not getting anything done. I’m aggravated at the same time that I’m like… ehhh all right. The Bubby and I had a relaxing day yesterday and went to lunch with my fabulous mother-in-law and our friend Staci. On our way out the door we had a spill down the stairs. We never saw the black ice!!!! Fortunately, we are just a little banged up. But today I’m feelin’ it!! But, seeing a couple old friends at lunch yesterday was definitely a bright spot! We went to River City (after an EPIC FAIL at another local establishment..), my former workplace. My girl Sarah served us and made everything fabulous, fun, and perfect! I adore her ❤️! And, she hooked us up with a friend that might do our reveal cake for baby number 2! Yay!! So, after enjoying a splurge meal, great company, and catching up with friends, we were spent! As soon as Brody was strapped into the car, he was OUT!!! He even slept through me taking off his layers of coats! So, we snuggled in the big bed and slept until 7:30!!!! From 4:30-7:30!!! I decided I will no longer have mommy guilt for taking naps with Bubby mid day. I realize we BOTH need that break from each day. I realized I’m a much better person and mommy when I get some extra chill time. Like I always say… making humans is hard work!!! 

– A zonked out Bubby right out of the car, and Moose goes in for the snuggle! –
Sooooo! That was perfect timing because we didn’t have to wait for Ian to get home much longer after that. I still felt restless so we decided to meet up at V.I. for an easy dinner and pie and coffee with mom and dad. Following that, we went to Walmart and got our grocery shopping done! Seriously, eating plant based makes shopping SO fast! Everything is right by the front!! Definitely another upside! I always feel kinda blah when I eat “off meals” so I think I’m done with that for a little while. If you think about it, eating calorie rich but nutrient poor foods really takes a toll on digestion and energy levels. Blood sugar can get all crazy and then you feel sluggish. In my case, I get migraines. Sooo, today I’m back on the regular and feeling really good! Besides the back pain, I’m tip top! Though… the weather is bumming me out, ha ha! 

-cinnamon apples for the win!-

Rest, recharge, reboot. That’s the goal today. I had some blood work done a couple days ago and HOLY GUACAMOLE something didn’t go quite right. My dang arm is so sad right now, and moving it too much is super annoying. So…. no matter how much I want to do projects, I’ll not be stubborn today. A part of me wants to paint and clean and decorate and organize!! But ehh… I’m cold and in my fluffy penguin pants so I think we will snuggle, eat, and play video games instead. Maybe I’ll do a little planning on Pinterest lol. I’m pretty paranoid of going outside anyways… literally black ice ALL over town!!! 

-Green Juice makes it all better!!! Spinach, kale, orange, ginger, coconut water, cucumber, apple. Yum!!!! Tons of nutrients to make me healthy.-

-brand new hat matches the jammies today! Adorable! –

First thing today, we got a package from my mom in Texas! There’s tons of fun goodies I can’t wait to use! Bubby got a new hat that he’s been wearing all day now. In the package, mom sent me spices and a fun angel charm. Definitely made today a little less blah! I got some of the cinnamon sticks she sent boiled for tea, and now the house smells delicious!! 

So, until spring comes back… I think I’m gonna just keep feeling crazy. But, it does give me time to take care of myself and do lots of play time with Bubby. Lately, I’ve been able to work more on my skin and I am SO happy with today’s results!! A huge sign of inner health is what your outer self shows. You’ll see in your hair, skin, nails, and eyes what’s going on from the inside. Did you know that each part of the face corresponds to different organs? It’s a great indicator for what ailment is happening that you may not know about. Especially in breakouts, you can figure out what needs detoxing or more care. And everything can be fixed with the right nutrition. Let your food be your medicine!! Because the only way to take care of yourself is from the inside out. That could literally be eating more cucumbers and drinking more water! These past couple weeks, I’ve been working on drawing out toxins from the outside with homemade mud masks. I’ve switched my hygiene products to self made or all natural. Lastly, I’ve been juicing for extra nutrients and eating little to no processed foods or animal products. I have not felt this good in EVER! And I’m at a total 180 from my first trimester, when I was on a standard diet and using “normal” products daily. 

-ouch ouch OUCH!-

So, the point I was getting to was, my face has been seriously detoxing. During this process, it usually always gets worse before it gets better. You never realize how sick you truly are until you make consistent changes. I’m thinking I’m super close to finally achieving the skin of my dreams!! My face is less dull, the texture is improving, and less inflammation or breakouts! My eyes are brighter, I recover quicker, my hair is stronger and shinier, and my nails are seriously amazingly strong!! I have less aches and pains! I’m managing my weight really well! I’m still fitting into a lot of my clothes (YES!). And overall, aside from hormones, my moods and feelings are really balanced! That’s a pretty big deal for someone who deals with anxiety and depression frequently. Again, when you get the right nutrients, your body performs and heals the right way! My brain is very thankful! So, I’ll put on a mud mask, drink my juice, eat my fruits and veggies, and just chill. Because, it’s that easy. It’s only complicated if you make it. I look out the window and think…. winter… yuck. 

-my window mandala makes me smile-

Super Sexy Weekend

Ladies… there’s nothing sexier than a man who gets things done!! Am I right?! My dearest hubs has been kicking some major project ASS this weekend!!! So, that definitely equals new level of sexy! I’m so proud!! By the time the new baby gets here we will literally have it all done! Yay!!! 
So, what’s been going on? I’ll show ya!! This will mostly be pictures and such! So, here it goes! 

As I was saying in the last blog, hubs decided he was gonna tackle our fridge project! And that he did! It was pretty cool to watch :). Though, I did help get it in the actual wall and a tiny bit of painting. Hubs did it all! I LOVE it! Aaaand the house is kind of a work zone sooo it’s messy, I’m sure you won’t mind! If ya do… well… whatever lol. 

Before, the fridge was in a horrible spot! Very inconvenient and took up weird space. 

Hubs and Bubs bonding over prepping the wall. SO adorable!! Didn’t get a dry wall demo picture, oops!! FYI, dust… everywhere!!! Gonna be dusting for months lol. 

Bubby watching dad get the last bit of drywall out. He was fascinated! Of course he was napping during the harsh part of he demo. No Bubby lungs getting weird dust! 

Yay! It was meant to be! The other side used to be a coat closet that we literally NEVER used! So, bye bye closet! Hello more kitchen space!! 

Next, the extra wood was cut and out of the way! 

Then of course he braced it from the inside :). Aaaand I caught this gem! Love it!!! Bahahah! 

Just cleaning up the front lol. 

Then TA-DA! Fridge in the wall!!! And new dry wall patched on the right side :). 

And then, new mud and texture! And paint!!! Yay!!! Tomorrow, we touch up the purple :D! 

Seriously, SO happy about this!! All that’s left is putting in the new vent and some pretty framing to make it clean and beautiful! Yay husband!!! So proud!! 

But! Not only did he do this, he also did some other projects! I helped here and there, he mostly let me relax and be pregnant. Pretty dang awesome of him! So, I handed him tools, kept him hydrated, and did some painting. Cool by me! 

He sanded our coffee table…

And painted it! Beautiful Luscious black! 

Then he took down the crazy…GIANT… dark…looming and invasive cabinet that was above the toilet! SO much brighter! And more simple! And he also fixed our sink! With new pipes and such! The last owners had it all crazy? 

Tomorrow, we paint a glass cabinet that’s go up in its place that’s 80% smaller than the last! And I’m going to paint the gross “white” walls. Gonna be way better until we can reno the whole thing :). More pics to come later!

And then! To finish the day off, he got this wall painted! (And the fridge wall). After we got a new entertainment center the cinnamon crunch had to GO! Sooo… my papa got us a new color :). And I am in LOVE! 

It’s so soothing! And makes me happy! And think of polar bears and Klondike bars? Not sure why, but I dig it!!

And of course Bubby found my rain boots that were stored away in the coat closet! So, he of course wanted to try them on. He was SO happy!! Definitely a highlight of the day. Too much cuteness!! 

Anyways! That’s what’s been up with us the past couple days!! Lots of trips to Home Depot in between. And of course we have some other fun projects around the corner! A sliding barn chalk door, installing the dishwasher, new counter tops, painting all the cabinets, new flooring….. laundry room craziness! I’m so happy to see things coming together!!! 

Thank you husband! Thank you thank you thank yoooou!!!!!!! 

Stay tuned! I’ll do progress updates and and such!!! Thanks friends!!!