Competitions, Conventions, & Waikiki Baby

This past weekend we went to Waikiki.  More photos sure to flood this site soon, but until then the highlights.  We went to “the big city” on our little island for the JUMP Dance Competition and Convention.  I LOVED. EVERY. MINUTE.  I have a huge story coming soon about why, but until then, let’s savor the other reason I loved it:

All along I’ve know my Evelyn June was going to have to be the third suitcase in our little brigade.  She did great.  I was such a proud mama of both of us.  We really made it work.  It gave me a boost of confidence to know we can do this.  Have suitcase: Will Travel.  Diaper bag and all!

competition weekend 2015

I was able to test out all my baby gear, and can not wait to share a few reviews on some of the items I have found to be a big help.  Evelyn slept all weekend in her baby tent.  Hotel camping is so chic.

competition weekend 2015

A very happy pool-side baby:

competition weekend 2015

And one busy Mama that ran from backstage to classes to the hotel for baby snuggles!

competition weekend 2015

It was fabulous.  I can’t wait for our next adventure, and to share how awesome the convention was!  I hope your Memorial Day weekend was memorable as well!

How to Hot Yoga

One of the HUGE treats I received over this past month was the opportunity to get back to Hot Yoga.  I fell in love with yoga back in Colorado.  I lived in Fort Collins for eight months after graduating university, and worked an intense schedule dancing at a rep theater.  I did not have much energy for extra workouts, until I discovered the Core Power Yoga Studio.  My fire was IGNITED. I could work out, stretch, sweat, and nurture my mind/body/soul all in one swoop!  My journey continued in Seoul, where my girlfriends and I would meet up to challenge ourselves and then add a treat of chatting it up after.

Here in Hawaii, I was delighted to try Hot Yoga by the Sea.  A beautiful blend of teachers that added just the right amount of soul to an intense physical practice.  I had to move to a gentler prenatal practice once I found out I was pregnant, and I have missed it so much.  Getting back to yoga this month also reminded me of how far I have come since pregnancy…and how far I have to go.  I need to keep honoring this body, and be proud of the changes it went through to produce our daughter.  Nevertheless, it is humbling to have to baby step my way back into poses that once felt fluid.  That ego of mine…it can be a trickster;)

How to Hot Yoga

My tips on How to HOT YOGA (let’s not get too serious here!):

1. You gotta love to sweat.  You are going to drip.  No make-up in here, but please wear deodorant.  If not for you, at least for your neighbor.

2. The grippy yoga towel on top of your mat is a big deal.  I tried towels…not long enough, and too thick.  I tried scrimping and going without…let’s just say my yoga toes went slip-sliding all over the place.  I love this one by Gaiam. 

3. WATER. LOTS OF IT. Before, during, and after class.

4. Don’t rush into class.  There’s no right way to Namaste, but cursing myself for feeling late and then getting stuck in the worst spot in the room sure isn’t a good start.

5. There are “perfect” spots in the room. Some people like to being underneath the heaters…that is like slow death to me.  I like to be back by the refreshing door, so that when the teacher puffs fresh air into the room, I’m the first to drink it in.

6. Yoga blocks, the cork ones, RULE. Use them. Love them.

7. I really try to get out of my “monkey mind”.  It is my hour to practice.  It is time to turn off cell phones, mindless wandering, and just be.

Have you ever tried Hot Yoga? I am looking for another way to continue my practice even with the babysitters, ahem, grandparents leaving soon.  I’ll let you know what I discover!

5.3 Million Steps to 30: 7 Month Update

As of May 25th, 2015:

I’ve been stepping it out since October 17th, 2014

315 days remain

I’ve walked 2,040,033 steps

That’s about 897 miles over 7 months!

I have 3,259,967 steps to go!  That means I need to average 10,350 steps a day to make my goal on time.

5.3 Million Steps to 30

My seventh month in my 5.3 million challenge felt like a breeze.  I know not every day, week, or month is going to feel like this, so I am thankful for how easy it felt!  I’m not sure where the biggest push came from. I wanted to hit my numbers, I didn’t give myself the option to slack.  On days I felt really great, I’d try to get more in so that if I had an “off” day it would not throw me horribly off track.  I think this challenge continues to be a combination of both mental and physical endurance.

 This month was also breezier with my parents here for support.  I always had a workout buddy nearby.  My mom even asked me one day, “did you get your steps yet?”  I honestly told her no, and that I was dragging.  She wouldn’t let me go down that way.  She said she needed groceries for that night’s dinner, and we hit the road with the stroller.  Instead of driving 10 minutes to the store, we walked the 3-mile round trip.  Every day I have the choice to celebrate a mini-victory.  I like the feeling of victory.  Success breeds success.

All of it is easier said than done, but looking back on month 7, I feel really good about the strength I’ve gained.  I feel good knowing I’m doing this.  It’s good that I am looking forward to continuing towards my goal.  I’m heading into what could be a more trying time here soon.  My live-in walking buddies are leaving.  It will just be me and my girl, pounding the pavement.  Looking at her though, she’s another great dose of inspiration for me.  I want to be the strongest Mama I can be.  I want to celebrate the achievement of this goal at 30, and be back to the great shape I was pre-pregnancy.

I can do this.  One step at a time.  It’s all good;)

52 Weeks of Happy 2015: 20

In week 20 of 2015 HAPPY came in so many forms.

It came in seeing Sue and Chantal again, and sharing a meal/shopping fun together.  I love seeing my ol’ CAPA family, and having them here is another reminder of all the astonishingly amazing people that have come into my life over the years.

It came in going back into work (for a guest appearance, not permanently) to rehearse my dance girls’ solos for competition this weekend.  It was hard to balance work, play, and baby.  I am thankful to have mom and dad here to babysit while I teeter back and forth between worlds!
GirlMeetup

It came in dressing rooms with my Mama.  Is there anything better than shopping with your own Mama? This time Evelyn even helped out by rolling around on a blanket.  It’s been refreshing to get a few new pieces that are functional and make me feel good at the size I am at right now.

It came in yoga classes.  So good to find time on the mat again.  I hope to continue my journey in some way even when it’s back to just me and babes at home.

It came in preparing for our first big weekend away from home.  Knowing I’m fully responsible for my little lady and all the things she needs can be daunting…and exhilarating too.  I am starting to find my own way in how I feel prepared, organized, and ready.

I can’t wait to share our upcoming adventures with you soon. Until then, I hope some happy came to you this week too!

Slice of Life Lately 1

We are gathering a multitude of assorted memories, and crazy pictures that capture our life lately.  I’m going to start this new series, Slice of Life as essentially a photo dump of all the many moments that tell the tale of life right now.

Lately we have owls in towels:

slice of life lately

Mom multitasking means toting baby, cleaning, cooking, making it work:

slice of life lately

Porch sing-alongs with Pacha:

slice of life lately

Koala hugs and morning snuggles:

slice of life lately

Loooong neighborhood walks enjoying the local flora and fauna:

slice of life lately

A new baby carrier (Ergo) arrived, baby and mommy love it:

slice of life lately

Book reading with Nana:

slice of life lately

Life Lately also means:

House of Cards marathons at night

pulling together family meals

passing baby around the house

rehearsing my other girls for competition

the big treat of coming home to my parents cleaning the house!

Hope you have a delicious slice of life lately too;)

Hometown Tourist: Disney Aulani Resort

I mentioned last week that we enjoyed a lovely day at the Disney Aulani Resort.  Our photos from the day captured much of the magic, and not the mayhem.  I am on a hard learning curve that “traveling” with baby is not always easy, but in my mind, certainly worth it.  These baby trips (no pun intended) are getting me ready for some heftier traveling coming up this summer.  I am nervous to rock it all solo, but I know that my little one and I can do it!

Until that creeps closer, let’s focus back on the fun character breakfast, and our new friends Mickey, Minnie, and Goofy:

Disney day! Disney day! Disney day! Disney day! Disney day! Disney day! Disney day! Disney day!

It’ll be a long while before we brave the real-deal Disney parks, but until then we have a small taste right here in Hawaii.  I continue to enjoy re-living some of the more touristy features on the island with Ev, and with the help of Nana and Pacha!

52 Weeks of Happy 2015: 19

How did another week fly by so quickly? I felt like I just sat down at my keyboard to type up last week…le sigh.  There’s still time with Mom and Dad left on island, but as always, I wish it could be even longer.

This week we were up to several HAPPY things, and kisses from Mickey were at the top of our list!  Our visit to the character breakfast at the Disney Aulani resort was fun/stressful/I’m learning what “going out” with baby means!  A lot of prep and yet also learning to go with the flow.

meeting Mickey Mouse

HAPPY also meant:

Building Evelyn’s crib.

Her first night in her “big girl” bed, and she moved into her own room.  Yes, I miss her being in the little crib next to my bed, but it was time.

A toy shelf was built and Nana and I went thrifting! I discovered some amazing deals for new baby items, I’ll be sharing soon.

My CPR/AED cert needed to be renewed, I knocked that out whilst I have excellent baby sitters!

I also enjoyed Hot Yoga again this week. Mommy Namaste.

Cheers to the week ahead! We’re headed into a busy weekend, and must make time to stick our toes in the sand soon!

Growing Girl: Weeks 11-15

Wonderful baby girl, you are growing, growing, growing!

In weeks 11- 15, things became even more FUN.  From those precious (but exhausting) newborn moments, we now have a little lady who is starting to share with us her BIG personality.  You hate being still (wonder who you received that trait from?).  Moving is your favorite.  I continue to be delighted at how this project is unfolding.  We’re growing together, you are changing every day.  I love capturing it from week to week.

Evelyn: Weeks 11-15 Photography Project

Growing Girl Series
Growing Girl Series Growing Girl Series Growing Girl Series Growing Girl Series Growing Girl Series Growing Girl Series Growing Girl Series

Growing Girl Series Growing Girl Series

From Weeks 11-15 I want to remember:

 

Hands are a focusing point.  You are working diligently each day to get them moving, grabbing, doing what you tell them to.  Sometimes with great success, other times with huge frustration.

You are starting to eat fingers, both mine and yours.  I can tell those wee gums are pondering teeth.

You found your abdominal muscles, and are clenching them daily. Baby ABS of STEEL.  You want to sit solo so badly!

The swing lost it’s appeal.  There’s too much to look at and listen to.  Which also means nap time at home had to be moved upstairs to your own bed.  You fought me.  I prevailed. You are learning to fall asleep by yourself and calm down. You now are sleeping for hours at nap time.

You wake me once (knock on wood!) a night to eat.  Either at midnight or two, or four. You pick the time. I pick up the food. We meet on the couch.

 You wake up at either six or seven to start your day.  On the days you hit six, I bring you to my room for a snuggle. You sometimes pass back out, and it is adorable when you roll over to find me there. That smile starts the day right.

You love having your Nana and Pacha here! What will we do without them??

The night Daddy left you felt it. You knew it somehow.  You cried for hours before I could finally assure you we’d be alright as just the two of us for a little while.

You can now hold onto my fingers and pull yourself from laying down to sitting, then from sitting to standing on the cutest wee wobbly legs!

Keep growing girl, we love you.

What to Expect NEXT

Hey there readers! This one is for you…and for me too.  If you’ve taken a moment to stop and gander at the photos and words meticulously placed across this page in countless posts, THANK YOU.  As any blogger out there knows, there is an insane amount of time that goes into the details, so the fact that YOU take time to stop by and read a line, or just scroll on through the cute baby pictures, it is appreciated.

Today I’ll put it out there: I’ve been considering the blog lately.  I’ve received a few pertinent questions I want to cover as well.

I have big dreams for this space. There’s always more I want to do.  From my tired header (ugh, seriously ready to freshen that up!) to the possibility of ever monetizing…the goals and ideas running through my head for this cozy corner of internet are endless.  I am not going anywhere soon.  I like writing too much to stop.  But where am I headed next in my blog journey?  That I am still trying to figure out, and if you hang with me, you’ll be figuring it out right along with me!  Here’s what I do have sorted:

What you can expect in numbers: 12- 15 posts a month.  52 Weeks of Happy is a staple item that I love, so know that each week I’ll be writing in with that gem.  I am now trying to average 3 posts a week, and I’ll let ya’ll know on Facebook when they are up and rolling.

Where am I going with social media: Time and again, my blog friends are urging me to be more of a “brand”.  Offering tips/writing on the things I’m starting to know best, such as: maintaining a positive attitude, memory keeping, happy housemaking, fitness motivation, and a whole lot of personal tales in travel, baby fun, and loving big.  I get it.  I should DO it.  So goals this year are to branch out with Instagram (I am still not on!), a “business” Facebook page, and even…although right now I dread, dread, dread it…twitter.  I’ll keep you posted as I explore each option.

What you can expect in content: I took a brilliant course last year from the ladies over at A Beautiful Mess and they broke it down for me: content is key.  I would adore putting more DIY, sewing, tip time, and fitness love up on here.  The writing of those pieces takes TIME. Time that I have not yet learned to maximize on in my new mama-status.  I know others do it.  I’m working toward it. Where there is a will, there’s a way.  Until then, you can expect a whole lot more of our life’s story.  I started this site as a “lifestyle blog” and it will in essence, reign that way…with the hopeful extra additions.  There’s going to be a lot of me being a mama.  Just as when we were in Korea, there was a whole lot of me exploring Seoul’s streets.  Art reflects Life.  This blog continues to be my art, and will mirror where I am at personally.

what to expect NEXT

Are we going to become Simply 3 Suitcases?: No.  The title will remain Simply2 due to the fact that I’ll be featuring Ev a lot as a baby, but as she gets older, to protect her and our family I’ll be even pickier of how much I do want to share about her.  This blog started as the journey of her Daddy and I, and will stay that way in title.

Will there be an email/contact sheet? Yes.  I am working on developing and opening an email account specifically for blogtime fun.

Are you ever going to sell anything? I have seriously considered researching what it would take to get a small business section of this blog going with items I already create for our family.  At current, I’m not ready for that giant step, but the wheels are always turning.

I hope you keep stopping by.  I’ll keep writing in this little corner as often as I can.  I love how this space has become an essential time capsule for us as a family.  I love that it continues to push me and give me a way to stretch my creative muscles. More adventures await;)…xoxolindsay

My First Mother’s Day

This is my first Mother’s Day.  This year I’m smiling.  Last year I remember Mother’s Day distinctly.  Ryan had left for deployment.  I was alone in Hawaii (not the worst place to be) and wondering if our attempts to become pregnant had prevailed.  I was throwing myself a pity party thinking they hadn’t, and we’d have to wait another 7 months to try again…and I missed my own Mama…and…and…I was a sorry sight.

Then a miraculous thing happened.  Two days later, on May 12th 2014 I took an at-home pregnancy test and the “pregnant” sign appeared.  My whole life tilted on it’s axis and our journey, little one, had begun.  You see, I’ve been carrying you around for a year now.  I’ve nurtured you grow inside, welcomed you to the outside, and every single day I take joy in watching you flourish.

Mother's Day 2015

You are my girl.  I am already incredibly proud of you.  I want to share with you so many things. Courage.  Kindness. Self-worth.  Curiosity. Excitement. Travel.  Books.  Art. All the things.  I’ll rely on Daddy for the sports…but for now we dance, dance, dance to the beat of our own drum in the kitchen.  We sway from side to side before bedtime.  We sing.   You attempt to laugh.  We coo in the bathtub and climb up Hawaii mountains together.  We dip our toes in the sand on the beach.  I hold that bottle as you look at me with hungry gratitude.  You hold my hand while furiously working at pulling up to a seated position.  I see the fight in you.  I see determination.

The smile you give me when you see me for the first time after you wake up is pure bliss.  The light in your eyes, it sparkles with love, warmth, adoration.

Mother's Day 2015 Mother's Day 2015

I can’t wait to keep on being your mama.  It is the best thing I’ve ever experienced. Truly.  Thank you for choosing me, baby.

And when our roads get rough…and Lord knows they have, and they will…I promise to keep being there.  To be your parent first, and later your friend.  I promise to love you so fiercely, with a strength I didn’t even know I possessed.

Thank you to my own mama, who paved the road before me.  I see now all the love and courage it took to help me along the way.  I see how the example was set, how we as mother’s each day do our very best. Some of those days are fun. Easy-going. Lovely.  Others are daunting, draining, sleep-deprived and scary.  We find the will to keep going.  It’s not even a choice, it’s just done.  We are superheros with burp cloths, big hugs, and the stamina of marathon runners.

Mother's Day 2015

On my first Mother’s Day, I’m smiling, girl.  You remain my sunshine.

You are the gift that keeps on giving.