Turkey Week is finally here & for the Goodmama Household that means lots of things!
I admit it. I am obsessed with Old Navy. It all began once I began showing during my pregnancy with Samantha. I found so many great maternity items for such great prices. I began shopping there then, and even after the arrival of Miss SG, I haven’t stopped. Whoever is doing the marketing right now is doing a great job as well. (Anyone know what agency their using?)
As you know, I love a great deal. And with their low prices, weekly deals, and coupons via email, I feel like this mama is scoring BIG TIME.
Also, life is so different being home full time. I feel like my wardrobe was so heavily stocked with “work clothes” and not enough “cute” mama clothes. As much as I do miss pulling out my pencil skirt, embellished top, heels, and pearls- I am enjoying this phase of leggings, boots, shirt dress’s and ballet flats. Now, don’t get me wrong, I am a girl who ADORES dressing up. It’s just that right now-my little season of dressing like a “OC” Mom is really fun. With the Old Navy prices, I feel like I can dress for this season at the perfect price. And since I don’t know how long this “casual” phase of mine will last-I am justifying the purchases as necessary since I have a baby to tote around 🙂 Got to look cute doing it….right?
Here are some of my current FAB FAV items:
They of course, remind me of Uggs…Free Compared to the Price of Uggs. Seriously, So comfy.
Don’t know what it is about this vest. But I feel like a real mama wearing it.
I feel like a “hippster”. Isn’t that what all the young trendy kids are called these days?
For like $5 these shirts are perfect with jeans or for working-out. Super soft. Loves.
I love leggings. Especially at this price!
Date night?! 🙂 Throwing on red heels with this dress will be perfect for the holidays.
My sweet goodness. I am so happy. Taylor Swift’s new album released on Monday entitled “Speak Now”. I just love her. I can’t get enough of her music. My love for her music all began with her first album back in 2007-before she became the hit that she is now. In college, my hubby (then BF 🙂 was interning at Universal Music Group. He would get pre-released CD’s (loved this!) and one day brought me Taylor Swift’s first album. For months on end I listened to her lovely lyrics and incredible voice. “Tim McGraw”, “Mary’s Song”, “Teardrops On My Guitar”, and “Our Song” quickly became favorites. I was in love. I remember looking at Jordan and saying then-she will be famous. Who could have predicted her fame back then?
Ehhemm…ME! (I have to say this is the second musical talent I predicted early on would be famous-Augustana was the first-saw them perform on the grass in front of my dorm on my college campus and then years later predicted Taylor. I think I have a calling 🙂 Okay….so back to Taylor-sorry for getting side tracked. It happens too much around the Goodmama Household!
After her freshman release, then came Fearless. I cannot even tell you how many times I have listened to that CD. Within days, every word was memorized and the CD played for months on end. In early 2009, my co-worker and I would play it on repeat all day long (and sign it out loud as much as possible)-much to the annoyance of our other co-workers. I have to say “Fifteen”, “Breathe”, and “The Best Day” were my favorites from that album. Fifteen so resonated with me…The song took me back to the days of high school living-and all the drama that was high school. I really wish I could have told myself then-exactly what Taylor wrote in these lyrics…
“Cause when you’re fifteen and somebody tells you they love you
You’re gonna believe them
When you’re fifteen and your first kiss
Makes your head spin ’round
But in your life you’ll do things greater than
Dating the boy on the football team
But I didn’t know it at fifteen”…
I know silly. I know. But really-I wish I could have told myself at fifteen life would get so much better than dating that boy on the football team. Like really, MUCH BETTER. Hindsight is everything, huh?!
I have been counting down the days until the release of “Speak Now”. I am of course, not disappointed! Loving her honest, “real life”, truthful, relatable, innocent-yet not, lyrics. I am obsessed with Dear John. Its written to John Mayer. Rumor in the celeb mags was that they were an item. This song confirms it. And its beautifully written-the true heartbreak anthem for any girl who fell in love with a boy who didn’t love her back. We have all been there gals-and this one says it all. I just can’t believe its about John Mayer-the boy who wrote the lyrics to Room For Squares
is the man who broke Taylor’s heart. He has changed so much from the guy he used to be-to the heart-breaker he is now. AGH. John. You broke tay.tay’s heart-makes me like you even less now. He is in need of a lot of redemption!
My FAVORITE new song obession is “Never Grow Up”….AGH. This is exactly what I feel in this season of my life right now as a new mama.
Here’s a little lyrical taste. I will leave you with this. It says it all. Its exactly what I want to communicate to Sweet Samantha right now….Thank you Taylor for again hitting it out of the ballpark. Run-don’t walk to go buy “Speak Now”…(or if your like me…download it from Rhapsody to your iphone :).
“Your little hand’s wrapped around my finger
And it’s so quiet in the world tonight
Your little eyelids flutter cause you’re dreaming
So I tuck you in, turn on your favorite night light
To you everything’s funny, you got nothing to regret
I’d give all I have, honey
If you could stay like that
Oh darling (Samantha), don’t you ever grow up
Don’t you ever grow up, just stay this little
Oh darling (Samantha), don’t you ever grow up
Don’t you ever grow up, it could stay this simple
I won’t let nobody hurt you, won’t let no one break your heart
And no one will desert you
Just try to never grow up, never grow up (Samantha)…
Tay Tay Lover
For those of you who know me dearly, you KNOW how much I despise summer ending. And if this last week of weather was any indication of which season it truly is-FALL is indeed here. AGH. I just hate even typing those words. I usually love October’s-we normally still have high temperatures and the Santa Ana winds. (Hate the wildfires that the Santa Ana winds usually bring-but love what the weather does for my hair). 🙂 This year though, we have had the weirdest weather, so unpredictable. (It RAINED on the morning of July 7th on our way to the hospital to have SG!) And while I am still hoping for some warm weather, my hopes are not high.
My hubby on the other hand LOVES fall. Its his favorite season. Cool weather, rain, cloudy days, the Holiday’s, staying cozy indoors with a fire lit & pumpkin candles burning… the list could go on….
So in his “attempts” to welcome me to fall he has brought me TWO gorgeous bouquets of flowers in the past two weeks. He says he is “welcoming me to fall slowly”. Gotta love the boy.
Jordan’s mom (another fall lover) sent me home with this beautiful arrangement compliments of a FAB party she threw yesterday afternoon.
Like it or not, fall is right around the corner (or here…ekkk!). What better way to be welcomed than this?!
I LOVE Trader Joes. Our family has been shopping there for years- the food, environment, and store culture is just so “dialed in” as my dad would say. I look forward to going there once a week with a list of all my “meal plans” for the days ahead and loading up the cart with healthy, yummy options! (And some treats too-hello…this is the Goodmama household…)
There is something SO cozy about the store- so many things I love…The friendly faces, brewed coffee & food samples in the back, the beautiful flower’s, the “fearless flyer”, the wine & beer section, the seasonal items, and the recipe suggestions. My mama always taught me the importance of using coupons, looking for discounts, and finding the best price. Its one of the the many important things I believe she taught me. And at Trader Joes, I always feel like I am getting the best price. ALWAYS. I actually get SO irritated when I have to go to a “real grocery” store as I call Albertsons & Pavilions because I feel like I am getting ripped off.
When I walk in to “Traders” as I affectionately call it, I just feel at home. Even my hubby who was ANTI for years, has not only come around to liking the store-but now shares the love of it as well. There are SO many items I could “love on” and recommend, I might just have to start posting a weekly update on a “oldie” we have loved for years or a “newbie”… (I am putting this in writing so that I might have some accountability…maybe?) There are so many items that are “oldies” that my mama has used to cook for our family for years, that I now use for my little family. AND so many “newbies” that I discover on a weekly basis. My mama and I are always swapping new items we “discover” that each other just HAS to try!
I also believe they recently updated their website. If not, its new to me. Its INCREDIBLE!
Check it out: http://www.traderjoes.com/index.asp.
They have recipe suggestions, featured items (dying to bake their new cake mix and frosting), and these incredible “guides” on party planning, ingredients, cooking, pairing wines with foods, & coffee prep. Could spend at least an hour playing on their website!
My FAVORITE summer item from Traders this year was their MISSION ST. Hefeweizen. Can you say YUMMY??! Its incredible. I really enjoy beer-light beers that still have some flavor. Right after I had Samantha, I had this unusual craving for beer. Not wine, which I thought I would be wanting… but beer. And all I wanted were Hefeweizen’s. So strange-I have always liked them-but not craved them.
I honestly can’t remember if it was my mama or I who discovered this-but within the first week or two of SG’s arrival, all I know was that I was loading my cart up with this deliciousness! Trader Joe’s describes the aroma as: tropical fruit, banana, light citrus and undertones of clove-like spice. Pure SUMMER heaven. Trader Joes featured it as their Beer of the Month for August. The bottle is large-its about two beers in one. Perfect for splitting with a friend or enjoying the whole bottle once Samantha’s down for the night 🙂 Run, don’t walk to get this “goodmama find”! If your anything like me, I buy more than a couple bottles of this Mission St. Hefeweizen at a time-I have been at Traders when they have run out-and I wasn’t a happy mama! Enjoy this yummy treat-and be sure to let me know what you think about it-I hope you love it as much as I do!
Many of you know the story of our Sweet Samantha’s journey to enter this world. I will tell this account from my perspective while I still carried little S inside of me. While she was near, and dear-and I could feel ever kick & movement. My heart has been longing to write it all down, in a time when the house is quiet (rare these days) & when my mind was clear enough to process all that happened. This is only just “Part 1”. I long to write “Part 2”-because there is so much more, but dear friends-I have a three month old, and we all know that time is limited with little ones! So here is part 1-the “beginning of Sweet Samantha”.
We found out we were preggars with Samantha in October of 2009. We hadn’t been trying long, and then several pregnancy tests later, came to discover we were indeed pregnant with a little bundle! The morning we found out-we had taken I think three or four tests the days before-so as I looked upon the little stick I didn’t quite believe my eyes when it said “Pregnant”. I will never forget, I was brushing my teeth and Jordan was pacing our master bedroom. Those two minutes felt like the longest of my life! I started screaming for joy & Jordan ran over. It was hugs, kisses, screams, and prayers of thankfulness. Immediately, since it was early on a Saturday morning, I wanted Starbucks to celebrate. I’ll never forget, I said to Jordan-“Guess I have to switch to decaf!”
The journey of carrying Samantha involved lots of things like switching to “decaf’-which was not easy for me! No sushi, wine, caffeine-Let’s be honest, my three favorite food groups. (Much debate on the caffeine front & being pregnant-I did get to enjoy some caffeine-but it wasn’t like it used to be through pregnancy). Our pregnancy- I use the term “our” loosely here folks. Jordan was the most supportive, encouraging, kind, loving man throughout my pregnancy. Don’t get me wrong-he was the best! But at times-I just didn’t love being pregnant. I mean, come on God-how many months do you need to cook a baby! If he can create the world in 7 days-he can make a baby develop in 7 weeks, right?! (I know, I know God-your timing is perfect!)
Other than being nauseous for the first couple of months (drag), body changing in weird ways (dragger) feeling like the size of a whale towards the end (major drag), and work issues (annoying drag)…I had a very healthy pregnancy comparatively.
All the while, I kept thinking to myself-wow-this little girl-this precious gift from God will be here soon. And I was on a countdown! My due date was June 28th, 2010. Exactly a year from when we had gone off birth control & Exactly my half birthday. The perfect due date in my opinion. Yet, I was convinced that I was going to have her early. I thought weeks early actually. All of my girlfriends who were pregnant during the same season were having their’s weeks early. So I just assumed that I would follow suit. WRONG!
As my due date kept getting closer, I kept thinking. “Today will be the day”! Literally, for weeks on end, I was convinced that she would be coming that day! I kept shaving my legs, doing my hair, re-packing the hospital bag and nesting, nesting, nesting. As June 28th came around-I was in SHOCK that she wasn’t here yet. To use the word frustrated is an understatement. To make matters worse, I had envisioned what life would be like on 4th of July with her. My mom and I even tried to buy a 4th of July outfit to make her come faster! I tried everything to induce labor. EVERYTHING…including castor oil. Oh, my.
So, I did what everyone would do…I stopped shaving my legs, didn’t blow-dry my hair and would PURPOSEFULLY remove essential hospital items from my bag. Yup, I was convinced that doing these things would solve my belly growing bigger and bigger by the moment. They of course didn’t.
And, I (*tried) doing what I knew I really needed to be doing-sitting before the throne of God-and asking him the hard questions of “why”, “how come”, & “not fair”. I know that being late in pregnancy pails in comparison to what so many of my friends and peers have suffered-but for me-those 9 days were so overwhelmingly hard. And for that, I almost apologize that my weakness of “self” was so all consuming.
Yet, in true God fashion-He met me right where I was at. He spoke SUCH truth, encouragement, and faith building into me those weeks before Samantha came. The weeks before her due date were all about trust and those 9 days after her due date were all about faith. He was in the midst of my hurt and fear working in me trust & faith. Through the circumstances, through my mini-storm. Words cannot express how that small “desert” & crisis of faith leading up to her arrival have prepared me for situations I have faced since her arrival.
Nothing can stop God from working and moving. Not the circumstances, the situation, the worry, the fear, the problem, the issue. He is working in the here & now-in the midst of the pain, the sorrow, the anguish, the dark night and the “over-dueness” of the situation.
Psalm 73:16-17 says, “When I tried to understand all this, it troubled me deeply till I entered the sanctuary of God; then I understood their final destiny.” (Today’s New International Version-I love this version & The Message too-sometimes I need it in plain everyday modern speak).
How many of my problems, issues, fears do I think about, discuss, and complain about BEFORE bringing them before God? How many things to do I rationalize, justify, “problem-solve” on my OWN human capacity? Honestly, they are to many to count. But when I enter, the sanctuary of God I can take my “stuff” before the Lord-and He will… & He does speak to me.
Psalm 34:4 says, “I sought the LORD, and he answered me; he delivered me from all my fears”. In those weeks leading up to Samantha’s arrival, I had so much fear. Yet, once I entered the “sanctuary”-and searched for wisdom like hidden treausure-that’s when I really saw the impact of the Lord teaching me and growing me. Don’t get me wrong, I still struggle and grapple with fear about SO much. But these words are a reminder to me on a daily basis that when I enter into HIS sanctuary I will not come up empty handed.
Boy, did HE speak to me during those “over-due” days. I will write more of the words, the verses, and the impact those days had on my life in “Part 2”. It was a “mini-desert” for sure. But, let me tell you, the end, was so worth it.
You Samantha, made those 9 (almost 10 for me!) months worth everything. Happy 3 months my little sweetness. You ARE the blessing I always thought I wanted but never really understood the FULLNESS of until you arrived. You have far exceeded my expectations of mamahood-I didn’t think it was possible to love so much.