Counting My Blessings

Although I have my low points, my off days, my minor annoyances and my meltdowns… I have to acknowledge that I am incredibly blessed. Sure, life is imperfect, as that is a given. Life is messy and having kids is crazy but I love it. I have the best job in the world and I am grateful every single day to be called mama by two amazing little girls.

Autumn quickly ushers in the season of thanksgiving, so in honor of the spirit of the season, here are 10 things I am so incredibly grateful for. (This could end up being a very mushy post, so forgive me, but I think it is good for the soul to count your blessings, and not just on turkey day!)

1. My husband. I am so grateful to have such a good man as my husband and father of my children. He cooks our dinner nearly every night, he works long, hard hours to support us financially, and he supports me in pursuing my dreams. He is also a fun and funny guy and he always makes me laugh. I won’t get too sappy here, but I still feel like the luckiest girl in the world to be married to him!

2. My precious daughters. They are just the sweetest things to grace the earth (in my humble opinion) and it often takes my breath away just to look into their eyes and know they are a part of me.

3. Elodie’s spunk. There are times when I don’t fully appreciate it, but I am blessed that her fun and friendly personality spreads so much joy to this world. 

4. Staying home. I am deeply appreciative that I have the opportunity to stay at home with my daughters while they are so small. I love watching them grow up, there are just no words to describe how lucky I feel that I can be home with them to witness it firsthand. We have to make some sacrifices to make it possible but it is so worth it.

5. My mama friends. I would go crazy without them. I appreciate their support, advice, listening ears and friendly company. They are my support group and I learn so much from them.

6. Where we live. We get to live in such a beautiful location with the beach close by and tons of restaurants and cool places to explore within easy walking distance. It is gorgeous and we are super fortunate that through the generosity of family we can afford to rent here.

7. Creature comforts. We don’t live in the most luxurious home but getting to have a nice place to live and every thing we need to survive means we are truly fortunate. I know many others go without electricity and clean running water.

8. My functioning body. There are parts of my body that I can get hung up on, but I can’t forget that my body has been good to me. I appreciate that it housed my daughters until they were ready to enter the world, and I am thankful that I get to live and see and walk and breathe every day.

9. Community. I am still learning a lot in life and one of the things I have witnessed lately is the true generosity of others. I am in a community group that trades and gives instead of selling and it has been an incredible experience so far. There are a lot of generous hearts out there and I am thankful to have connected with them. It’s a reminder of all the good that exists out there in the world.

10. This blog. I am super grateful that I have a place to express myself that also allows me to have new experiences I would never get the chance to have otherwise. I know I am blessed to have these opportunities and I am thankful to everyone who has been a part of my blogging journey.

(Nearly) Wordless Wednesday

The only sign of Fall in San Diego….

Well… that and I just ordered a bunch of new sweaters, even with temps in the 90s all week…. 

Fall, where are you?

Remembering back to school…

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When I first think of “back to school” I can almost smell the pink rubber of brand new erasers. I can remember pulling the tags off new clothes setting them in a neat pile for the first day, and packing my backpack with crisp, empty notebooks and freshly sharpened pencils. It makes me so nostalgic that I want to run out and buy a lot of unnecessary office supplies.

I was always that nerdy little kid who got REALLY excited about school starting. 

And not just to see my friends, but because I loved learning.

Even if the first day of school was often my birthday.

I usually got my back to school clothes as a birthday present. Even if my sisters got back to school clothes, too, and it wasn’t their birthdays.

I loved picking out the brand new outfit to wear to school. I remember once when I was about 12, it was a neon orange and pink skirt with fringe and platform shoes. Another year it was bell bottomed denim overalls and new gray tennies.

Yeah, I really was that nerdy kid. Imagine me- scrawny, glasses, and carrying around a backpack that weighed as much as I did. Oh, and my mom cut my bangs for me. So obviously, I was pretty popular.

I started high school on my 14th birthday. My best friend brought me a balloon, which was really sweet, but made me stick out like a sore thumb. It was still a pretty good day, even if I felt so small and intimidated around all the older, cooler kids.

When I remember how that felt…. it makes me glad that I no longer have to go back to school anymore. I am pretty glad that I am beyond that stage of life. 

Elodie will be off to kindergarten, celebrating her own first back-to-school season in just two short years, and I am equal parts excited and terrified. I know she will totally love it, especially making new friends and meeting her teacher, and recess, and lunch. And I can pretty much predict that her first report card will remark on how Elodie is as an enthusiastic, bright and happy kid, and also the class clown.

That’s something worth looking forward to.

Fall Bucket List

Growing up, my family didn’t have a lot of money, but somehow we still made a big deal out of birthdays and holidays. It really wasn’t about the STUFF it was about celebrating and enjoying what we had. 

Even as an adult, I still hold my memories of family traditions close to my heart. We never had a pinterest-perfect Christmas or magazine worthy birthday party, but we had a lot of joy.

As a parent, I am committed to creating rich childhood memories for my kids- a small way for them to look back and remember the fun, love and joy of their childhood, and something for them to carry into the world with them wherever they go.

My fall traditions are many but simple. We spread them out through the months of September, October and November. And we have a ton of fun!

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-Apple picking

-Getting my first pumpkin spice latte of the season

-Decorating the house

-Picking out the perfect halloween costumes

-Visiting the pumpkin patch

-Pumpkin carving or decorating

-Trick-or-treating

-Cocoa and pumpkin pie with friends at Denny’s

We have already gone apple picking and had my pumpkin spice lattes, now I am just waiting for San Diego to cool down so I can enjoy my sweaters and boots, and it will really feel like autumn to me.

What are your family’s fall traditions?