So, uh… HEY!

I’ve started this post so many times, and no opener (or title) feels quite right.   I mean, how do you go MIA for so long and then just come back acting like nothing happened?   Answer:  You don’t.   At least I don’t.   I can’t.  So, I’m employing my social-awkwardness skills, and slowly sauntering back with my tail between legs to say… Hi.   🙂

I’ve missed blogging, but the truth is that even though we’ve completed some fantastic home projects over the past few months, home decor and blogging simply hasn’t been the focus of life as of late.

THIS has been the focus….

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His name is Henry Alex Spragins and he was born on March 27th, 2017.   Ain’t he a beaut?? (Not that I’m biased). 😉

We are absolutely THRILLED to have welcomed this little guy, as growing our family is something that we’d hoped and tried for for a long time.   For  three years to be exact.    I was to the point where I *knew* it wouldn’t happen.   But, then it did.  And extreme happiness ensued.    I still remember that moment when we found out.  It was the weirdest, happiest, scariest moment ever.   Disbelief, elation, nervousness that something would go wrong during the pregnancy.   The fact that we were going to have the profound privilege of caring for another life when we didn’t think we would again brought such joy.    And we couldn’t have been more excited about it.    It took a while for it to even seem real.

…And then morning sickness hit and I was like “Yep!  REAL.”.  Ha! 😉

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(At 34 weeks)

I’m not gonna lie… this pregnancy wasn’t a fun one.  I had awful morning sickness and crazy insomnia…  Oh, the INSOMNIA.  I barely slept the ENTIRE pregnancy, but all of this was a small price to pay in my opinion.  And, thanks to this pregnancy-induced *sleep training*, I was actually in much better shape sleep-wise for much longer than expected after he was born.  I mean, getting by with less sleep had become habit by this point.  That is… until about 6 weeks in, when I hit “The Wall”.  You know what I’m talking about… “The Wall”: That moment when you realize “I’m so effing tired that I just walked my kid up to school in my pajamas, with uncombed hair and no make up and didn’t even REALIZE it until I got home and walked past a mirror”.   Heehee!  I broke out into hysterical giggles when I realized that I’d literally forgotten to change.  Actually, “forgotten” isn’t the right word… It hadn’t even crossed my mind to begin with.  A few days later, I realized that Joey had also hit “The Wall” when the beeper on the coffee machine went off to tell us that our coffee was ready and he started fanning the smoke detector with a towel.   I laughed even harder at that one.

Despite all this, Henry is such an amazing addition to our family, albeit COMPLETELY different than Lucas was.  It’s incredible how two such opposite entities can escape from one womb.  Needless to say, there’s been a total learning curve, but we’re getting there.

Speaking of Lucas, he’s been such a giant help.  He seems to have embraced his role of Big Brother like a champ.   It kills me every time I see them together.    Ugh, don’t even get me started on this cuteness…

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Or the Daddy-Son moments, for that matter…

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Just stop it right now.   (If you follow me on Instagram, you’ve probably seen these shots, but here they are again.  Because I love them.)

Anyways, once I started feeling more human again during my second trimester, I realized that in terms of our home, I needed to focus way more on function and organization.  SPOILER ALERT: They’ve been severely lacking.  I also needed to focus on ways to make our home more conducive to easy living, creativity, and family time.  Not just aesthetics.   While the former items have always been a consideration, pregnancy was definitely a reality check into how far I’d let them fall to the wayside over the past two years.  I spent a decent amount of time improving the functionality of our home as I felt up to it throughout the pregnancy and they’ll be subjects that I’ll blog about in the future.    Other changes that we’ve made include a new nursery, updated guest bath, as well as master bedroom, half bath, and laundry room improvements.   Oh, and curb appeal.  Oh, yes.   I’ve shared glimpses of these updates on Instagram, but I’d love to incorporate more comprehensive posts on the blog with details along with before and current pics.  Our House Tour page completely irks me right now…. It’s so outdated.  Time to rectify this.

Oh, and have I mentioned the kitchen???  Although the renovation was complete last summer, I haven’t stopped tweaking it in the meantime. ESPECIALLY since I’ve been in the space more, cooking.  Here’s a sneak peek…

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For me, a neat and creative space that feels like “us”, induces more creativity to take place in the space.  In this case, cooking.   Sometimes Joey stares at me, like “Why are you changing that again??” or “But, I just installed that light fixture… ”.  He’s always patient and seems to humor me just fine, but it’s just my process.   Living with a room and changing things trial-and-error style is how it evolves into a space that feels like us.  The kitchen has taken great strides and I can’t wait to share the details of what’s worked, what hasn’t, and our experience with living with our Ikea kitchen (with some cabinetry changes we’ve made for elements that we’ve found sub-par).

Now, one thing that’s for sure is that our new bundle of baby cuteness has really put life into perspective as of late.

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And I think this is why blogging came to a standstill for me for a while.   I LOVE home decor and working on our home, but the truth is that it isn’t our top priority… rather, it COMPLIMENTS our top priorities by making life easier, homier, more functional, and yes, pretty.   So, while I’ll be posting home-decor related stuff as per usual, I really want to start incorporating other types of posts upon occasion that reflect our lives in different ways that others may find helpful.

Truth be told, I’ve treated my blog as a journal of sorts throughout my pregnancy.   I’ve written posts as I’ve needed to to clear my head or document things that I was excited about.  I simply haven’t published them as I didn’t feel ready to share them at the times they were written.   I have a bunch of unpublished entries that I’d like to eventually share in between decor posts when the timing is right.  These are things that either I feel may be valuable to other people or that I want to document long term. Some include Henry’s birth story and how I recovered from my back injury (I’m better!  And running again!  Woot!).

Another thing that some of you may know is that up until this point in my career, I’ve worked as a registered dietitian for my day job.   My most recent job was in oncology, but I’ve worked with many types of clients over the past eleven years (both for various medical conditions and for healthy eating/weight loss).   BUT as much as I know about nutrition, I’m embarrassed to say that our diets at home weren’t always the best while I was working.   Since Henry was born, we’ve made the huge decision that I’m staying home with the kiddos for a while, thus, improving our nutrition on a budget is definitely a priority for me.   I’m not sure if this is of interest to everyone, but I thought that occasionally posting tips on what’s working (and isn’t) as well as how to get the process started in this regard may be useful to some.  What do you think?  Is this something you’d like to read about?

As I recommence into blogging again, frequency of posting will be organic and (again) reflect life.  Sometimes it will be more frequent, sometimes less.   But it will always be real in terms of what’s going on at the time.

So anyways,  anything else you guys want to hear about?  I always welcome ideas and constructive  feedback, so bring it!  😉

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House and vacay updates

GUUUUUUYYYYYYYSSSSS!!!   This month has completely flown by… wait.  Did I say this month?  Last month.  That’s what I meant.   Sheesh.   😉

I know January is usually a busy month for most and for us it was no different.   We’ve had a smattering of smaller house projects/additions that I didn’t think were truly worthy of full blog posts, so I’ve been posting on Instagram to keep y’all updated.   Right now, I’m working on a, well… unexpected project.  You may have seen (if you follow me on Insta), that we recently transformed our front bedroom into a workout space.  I’ve only shown tidbits of the room because I wanted to put together a full post about it.  And I would’ve had that post for you right here and now, except, well….
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I.CANNOT.BE.TRUSTED.

Most people rest when they have gnarly upper respiratory infections.  Me?  I get bored and start picking at things.

It’s a problem.

I need to sort it out.

But, I won’t.  😛

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This pic is one that I recently posted on Instagram of the new workout space.   But, ya see.. The desktop shown in this built-in above has always irked me.   Well, lets be honest… the BEIGENESS of the entire built-in irked me.   I’d always guessed that the paint job was of poor quality judging by the many chips in the paint, so I wondered how much effort it would really take to strip the desktop to bring it back to it’s original beauty.  On a whim, I chipped away at the paint in a corner with my fingernail.   And the paint came up easily.   So, I grabbed some tools and continued this quest.  And the paint practically FELL OFF with the exception of one teeny spot.  It was embarrassingly simple and literally took no strength.   Just a little exact-o knife with a flat blade (it was all I had)…

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Yes, that’s me Vanna-Whiting an Exact-o knife. I’m not sure why. I guess, in my medication-induced haze, I suspected that this is usual practice in the stripping of desktops?  We will never know.

On a funny note, as I was working on this, I thought I might need stripper for that stubborn tiny spot up front (I didn’t) and the following conversation ensued:

Me (to myself): “I think I need a stripper.”

Lucas: “He’s outside.”

Me: “Who?”

Lucas: “Daddy.”

I nearly keeled over laughing.  I swear, he does NOT know what a stripper is at five years old.  I’m not sure what he thought he heard, but it sure played out beautifully.

So anyways, back to the project, I’d love to tell you that I have a neat before and after for you this post, but thanks to this little chipping-of-the-paint discovery, I’m mid-project restoring the wood top.  AND IT’S FLIPPIN’ SPECTACULAR.   I mean, don’t get me wrong, I get covering up ugly 1970’s wood tones, (like I did here and here) but this desktop is pah-retty.

I’m going back and forth as to whether to paint the beige built-in’s white first, or just to show y’all the space after I finish the desktop and do that later.   I guess it depends on how excited/patient I am. Thus, I’ll probably just show you when it’s done.   Because… ME.

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Second update: Joey’s SOMEHOW convinced me to embark on a full-gut renovation of our kitchen.

Like, everything GONE.

All new cabinets, counters, appliances, lighting, backsplash, paint, you name it.   I was all for painting the cabinets and updating everything else, but he made a good case for stripping (harhar) everything and starting fresh.  Plus, the clincher was when I experimented with the Ikea Kitchen Planner and discovered just how affordable their cabinetry is.  I mean, I’d always heard it was but when I actually planned out an initial version of what we may want, the total cost was WAY below what I’d thought it’d be.  Sold.  Well, soon to be sold anyways.  We want to hold out for their annual kitchen sale to pull the trigger.   We’re still in the planning stages, but once we actually get closer to getting started, I’ll fill y’all in on the plan.  I’m scared.  Seriously.  The thought of not having a working kitchen for (potentially) months is totally unnerving for a cook-at-home gal like me.  It’ll all be worth it in the end, I’m sure, but gah…

Lastly, one of the more exciting adventures we’ve had lately was a family trip to Puerto Vallarta.   Joey’s grandparents celebrated their 50th wedding anniversary and took all of their children and adult grandchildren to a gorgeous all-inclusive resort.   It. Was Stunning.

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And I’m not gonna lie, I miss waking up to this view…

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And gazing at this from outside the elevator…

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This vacation was so relaxing and MUCH needed.   Joey and I got some great quality time together and we got to hang out with his family which was a blast.   We decided not to go on any excursions in favor of relaxing at the beach and pool, and I didn’t take a ton of pictures while we were there, but on the last day, we had Joey’s cousin Christine take some pics of us on the beach.  This is one of my faves…

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And I doubt you’ll find a pic that more accurately defines us than this one…

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Seeing these pics makes me wish I was here (warning: crummy iphone quality (but still fun) pic alert) …

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…On our first day of vacay.  Enjoying our first meal with the entire stay in store.  But, that’s okay.  Being back home means we’re with Lucas, who was definitely missed on our trip, though adults-only is really nice upon occasion for sure.  On a side note, I’m not normally a hat person, but for whatever reason I didn’t take that hat off much during our trip.  Weird.

Anyways, so now we’re now back to reality and ready to properly tackle 2016.  Let’s do this.  🙂

What are your goals for 2016?   Any recent trips or adventures?  Any DIY plans happening anytime soon?