Weekly Wins

Happy Friday, loves! It's been a chilly week here, but nothing like what the NorthEast is getting. Hoping you all fare alright with this 4th storm you're supposed to get!!!
This week went by pretty quickly, and was chock full of wins which is always a good sign of a good week!
My wins this week included:

~$50 in gift certificates from the PTA at my school for my birthday! This is a first--usually we just get a single serve package of popcorn from our admin that says "Your birthday popped up again" (which I also received). The gift cards were a nice bonus!

~Pi Day at school, meaning pie for eating too!
~Old Navy having a pi-day sale...and thanks to Brittany posting this pic, I ended up buying a ton of stuff for Ella (including that shirt), myself, and MG.
Too bad Old Navy takes forever to ship their stuff. The one downfall of that place.

~Successfully dropping my first morning nursing session...one step closer to closing the breastfeeding chapter!

~Fun St. Patrick's Day kid-friendly plans at our friends' place tomorrow, and lunch plans with my friend MK, her husband and baby on Sunday on the waterfront. It's always fun when the 6 of us get together :)

~MG's had a work training all week that's closer to home and starts later, so he's been around this week in the mornings which has been nice to have that little extra bit of family time together before we start our days.

~Finally having the heat work in my office after 2 weeks of 50 degree air pumping. It sounds like a silly win, but it has been amazing to not freeze in my office all day every day. (It's still not perfect, but I'm not having to wear my winter coat in my office all day which is a plus)

~Ella's last cold was short lived and relatively painless, and for once I didn't get it!!! Praise!

~A birthday breakfast being thrown in mine and my coworker's honor this morning at work. I love working with a team that celebrates each other!

~All of these ooey gooey, melt-your-heart photos from daycare. From lunch time dates, where Ella gets fed, to sweet kisses and cuddles...these boys love their Ella and it makes my heart so happy.
I'll leave you on that cute note. Hoping your weekend is full of sunshine and fun!

I Can't....

.....when people give you asinine explanations for things. Example: There is cold air pouring out of my vents at work. The building guy comes and takes a temp reading and it says 57 degrees despite the 73 on my thermostat. Then the next day when it happens again, he tells me the system is "very sophisticated" and that sometimes it will pump out cold air in order to equalize the temperature in the room.
Yep, that explains why it's the middle of winter, and for THREE HOURS+ I have cold, 57 degree air pumping on my head. And also, how is that sophisticated?? It's just stupid.

....when people's argument against gun reform is "well, people are just going to get guns anyway"....sure, there are ways around ANY law or whatever. Does that mean that we should just say "Eff the laws because some people are going to break them?" People will find drugs if they want them, does that mean we should just legalize it? People will drive without seatbelts, or drive drunk....I guess we should just not have rules for that either? Doesn't make sense.
And also, no one is trying to take away all the guns. #gettingoffmysoapbox  (Not trying to start a political debate here, just my own personal thoughts on this).

...people who post on Facebook or other social media sites for things like "Let's see who my true friends are by seeing who reads to the bottom of this {insanely long} post and who likes/shares this". If you don't know that I like you based on our relationship, and other things of yours that I "like" then I'm not going to convince you by liking those posts. Nor do I want to.

....when men take selfies. I used to date a guy right before MG who would take selfies. Like in his car or other random places. I just find it weird.

....when someone's entire identity is defined by a title. The title of "Doctor" or "Mrs" is ONE thing that defines you...it shouldn't be THE thing that defines you.

....when nail polish chips within hours or a couple days of a manicure. So frustrating!!

....when a place that is known for something, runs out of it. Like walking into Chipotle and being told theyre out of chicken, steak, and fajitas. Uhhhh isn't that like 90% of what youre supposed to have???

....when people request things of you SUPER last minute, time and time and time again. Another instance with lazy coworker this week!!!! Can't even take it!

....when my DVR is recording two programs and I'm trying to watch a third. I know, #firstworldproblems right?? :)

What are some things that you can't stand??

{WHW}: First Bday Planning

Yes, you read that right...I'm in the beginning stages of planning Ella's first birthday party. How this is possible, I'm not even sure because it feels like just the other week we were bringing her home!
My SIL in New Jersey offered to host Ella's birthday party including a bouncy (which my BIL rents out on the side). It'll be a party with just family, so relatively low key, which is a-okay with me. There's plenty of time for big birthdays, you know, once Ella actually remembers them haha.

Anyway, I've gone the totally predictable route and turned to Pinterest for good ideas, and I think I've found some cute ideas to try and incorporate.
Ironically, this girl's name is Ella, too :)
I love the idea of the floral headband, and the tutu around the highchair. She actually has this exact highchair, so I see doing something like this.

I also have all of Ella's monthly photos in the rocking chair in her room, next to her stuffed elephant that I could put on something like the hoop above, or this:

This cake is gorgeous, and I just love the gold hearts, too!

I could see her in an outfit similar to these two:

The tutu is probably my favorite, but who doesn't love glitter shorts too?

A fun extra, would be something like this for a makeshift "photo booth"

And I'd love to snap a fun photo like one of these of my girl on her special day:

For mamas who've already done the first birthday, are there any things that you did that were super cute? Or things that didn't go well? Give me your thoughts!

Now it's your turn to link up with Jessi and I to share what's hap-"pinning" with you!

Get in My Closet!

Every day I feel like I get an email from Loft with a sale, or new items, and I do my best to not even look, but now that I have a birthday gift card burning a hole in my wallet, I've been doing a little perusing.
I decided that if I had a super power, one of them would be to make any item I saw online and loved, appear in my closet--that'd be a good one right?

These are all items I've found during my leisurely online window shopping that I thought I'd share with you (this is NOT a sponsored post, but damn Loft SHOULD pay me for my advertising hahaha)

I'm loving these fun earrings--I'm not sure I could pull them off, but I'd maybe attempt it (definitely not around baby though or I'll no longer have ear holes hahah)
I actually have a top almost identical to this (from Loft--shocker), and this reminds me that I need to pull it out as soon as the temps allow
This dress makes me picture myself at a winery for the day, enjoying some wine and cheese and just relaxing with gorgeous weather:
This is actually a link for the shirt, but I think these shorts are super adorable! That scalloped edge has me all heart-eyed over here!
Wrap dresses are amazing, and this one makes me think of being in the Hamptons for a weekend...you know, in my Sex And The City alter ego life hahah
I have a problem and the first step is admitting to the problem. I'm a sucker for lacy white Loft tops...there I said it.
This top is a great transition piece, with Spring florals--I'd totally be ok if this showed up in my closet one day!
And then for good measure, I saw this top at Target which is simple, but would go with so much, and it's only $5!
What have you been seeing this season that you wouldn't mind making an appearance in your closet?

Weekending: 35 and Feelin' Fine!

Happy Monday, friends! 
Are you shocked that it's Monday and I'm actually posting?? Me too! haha

I'm coming off of a high from one of the best birthday weekends I've had, which is making the Monday blues a little less dreary.

My birthday weekend the last 3 years has been a bag of mixed emotions due to my dad passing away two days before my birthday. 

~Friday was the 2 year anniversary of my dad's passing. I want to thank all of you for your sweet thoughts, and kind prayers, and for those of you who reached out to me beyond just the blog. I can't tell you how much the support meant. I went through all of the emotions on Friday, but with the help of friends and MG, and some talks to my dad, I made it through. MG came home with daffodils on Friday, and I felt the love from my dad all around me
~Friday night we took Ella out to Chuy's for dinner--something low key, and it was delicious!

~Friday night was spent watching a movie and just relaxing into the weekend

~Saturday we got a care package from my SIL with two Loft shirts for me for my birthday, and St Patty's day and Easter gear for Ella. She's spoils us!
~Our ottoman arrived on Saturday afternoon, followed by a delivery from my in-laws of a cute little yellow rose bush that we can plant outside when it gets warmer, some cookies, and a Loft gift card (do they know me or what? haha)
~We took Ella for a short walk in the afternoon and she tried out the swings for the first time!
~That night we got ourselves dolled up, and our friend came to babysit so MG could take me out for my birthday to Eddie V's. And boyyyyy did we enjoy ALL. The. Things! It was the most delicious food, my favorite person, and time to ourselves. MG had the perfect playlist playing on the drive to and from the restaurant and I couldn't have asked for a more perfect night. I spent the drive home feeling so at peace, happy and blessed with where life is right now.
~Sunday morning Ella let us "sleep in" and adjusted to Daylight Saving Time like a champ--a HUGE birthday gift in and of itself! 

~I woke up to presents (a Pandora ring with my birthstone, and two gorgeous dresses that not only fit, but are totally my style) from MG, and had a yummy breakfast made for me!
Don't mind my pale skin, or messy hair
the back on this one is super cute with a fun cut out on top
~That afternoon, I went and got a massage which was heavenly! I even got a complimentary upgrade because it was my birthday. Heaven!!!

~My mom came late afternoon and we got to hang out. Ella loved on her grandma and Cooper was quite happy too.
~MG cooked dinner for us (seriously the best guy), my mom brought cake, and I made my birthday wish :)
~Ella went down at the new normal bedtime (amazing!) and we spent the night relaxing and enjoying the last bits of the weekend.

I've experienced lows and highs this weekend, and I have to say, I feel so blessed to have my friends around me who made sure I was ok on Friday--calling and checking on me and letting me know they love me.  And having MG to lean on when I needed someone to hold me and cry to. Followed by tons of sweet birthday wishes and all of the plans and thought behind MG's weekend for me. I feel like my cup runneth over and I'm just so thankful for the two best gifts I could ever ask for in these two:
If this was a sign of what 35 brings, I'd say it's going to be a fantastic year! 
Hoping your weekend was filled with lots of love, too!

2 Years

Two years ago I lost my dad, and I feel it just as hard this year as I did last year. Probably a lot of that has to do with having Ella here, and wishing she was able to see my dad, and me wishing I could watch him play with her.
I was talking with a friend about how her son realized that his grandma was actually her mom, and his grandfather was her dad. The idea that mommy and daddy both have moms and dads. And it hit me: Ella will never know my dad, and never have this epiphany about him. Or so many other things about him.
I'll never get to see my dad as a grandpa.
Gosh that sucks.
I remember the day after my dad died, MG took me for a hike just to get out and do something since the weather was nice, and at the beginning of March when it's still normally cold out, there was a single daffodil poking out in the brush on this trail. I knew it was my dad, somehow--I don't know how, but I just knew.
On Tuesday I was driving home after picking Ella up from daycare and along the drive, where it's normally all brush, twigs and leaves, I sped by a single daffodil right after I had been thinking about my dad and it made me smile. 

I know you're still here, Dad, and I know you're still looking after us all. 

If I had one wish for my birthday this year, it'd be to be able to have you spend the day with us, give you a hug again and tell you I love you, and hear you call me sweetheart.

I miss you every day, Dad...every single day.

{WHW}: Birthday Week

I feel like I'm MIA around here a lot lately and I'm sorry about that. Between working and mom'ing I just haven't had the time or energy to blog a ton, so I've only really been popping in on Wednesdays and Fridays.
I'm here today for What's Hap-"Pinning" Wednesday, though!
 Let's do a quick rundown of recent events:

~MG and I both had off work on Friday because of the crazy winds! Luckily we didn't lose power or have any damage to our house, but several of our friends lost power. It was nice having the extra day of family time together.

~We bought a new ottoman for our living room. The one we have we love, but there are SO many edges for a little baby face to fall into that we needed something softer and more kid-bump friendly, so we got this guy from Bob's furniture and it's getting delivered this Saturday.
{via} It's nothing fancy, but it's got storage and soft edges...
~We tried out a new Instant Pot recipe--Stuffed Pepper Soup and man was it good! Definitely recommend this one (there's a crock pot version on the website too, so check it out if you have either one!)
~Our dinner party a our friend's house on Friday night was a lot of fun. We ended up taking Ella with us because my mom was afraid to drive with the crazy winds. Ella fell asleep there with a little bit of effort and made it until a little after 10. There were LOTS of laughs and some crazy funny stories from my friend's husband--the night flew by which always happens with good people. The view on the way to dinner was amazing too:
~I had a semi #momfail moment when we went out to dinner Saturday night and I gave Ella a couple pieces of green pepper from the burger I was eating. Little did I know that they were spicy and all of a sudden her face got red, and she started crying. I tried the pepper (it WAS a green pepper, not a jalpeno) and realized it was spicy. Who would have thought?? I felt awful! Luckily she recovered ok, but damn. Lesson learned: try everything before offering it to the kiddo.
Also, why does she look so big here?!?!
~I watched The Bachelor on Monday, knowing the spoiler already (and going into Tuesday night), and I just have to say this: Arie is a douche. Also, Lauren is an idiot.
Isn't this how you drink your morning coffee? A "subtle" lean against the windowpane? *eyerollllllll*

I'll leave you with this adorable image of my girl, after her tubbie last week:
I can't stand how much I love her!!!!!!

~Birthday countdown: 4 days until 35. Whaaaaaaat? MG has dinner reservations at Eddie V's planned for us, I have a massage booked for Sunday, and my mom is visiting this weekend. All in all, 35 isn't looking too shabby! 

Link up and share what's hap-"pinning" in your world!!