Sunday, April 6, 2014

The Master Bedroom

I have been updating our master bedroom over the last year or so, and I feel like it is finally complete. That word, complete, is one Russ anticipates hearing with every room in our house. I'm sure I'll update it over the years or so, but for now, it is complete. (see what I did there?) :)

It's interesting because it's not like I started thinking "hmmm, I want to decorate the master bedroom." Everything somehow has just come together slowly over the last 4 1/2 year of our marriage. It's slightly miraculous that it works. 

My Christmas present was a new bed. I have talked about the "Colette Bed" from Crate & Barrel for years, so imagine my shock and surprise when Russ actually surprised me with it! We had an Ikea wood frame bed, which we both pretty much hated. I enjoy sitting up and reading in bed, which was super uncomfortable, but now I could hang out here all day. And sometimes the babies and I do! Haha. 

The pillows are from Caitlin Wilson Textiles that I bought second-hand from a friend of a friend. (Unfortunately that color is no longer available). The duvet and sheets are from West Elm. After years of hunting them down, I finally found the sheets at Downeast Home, a local discount home store. 

The starburst mirror is from Target. It replaced a homemade shelf we had made years ago. That link also shows the Ikea bed and our hand-me-down bedside tables before they were painted white. Because people have asked, our walls are painted Cliffside Grey by Benjamin Moore. It's the perfect GREY - not warm, not cool, just grey. I love it. 

Another reason I have always loved our room is the view. We sure love that river and those mountains.
The clear lamps, lamp shades and frame are also from Target. Oh Target, you suck so much of my money.

One update that I actually really love are the DIY curtain rods. I applied some gold rub n' buff to cheap $7 Ikea curtain rods using this method. I wanted them to match the mirror and was pleasantly surprised by how much I love them. The curtains are from - you guessed it - Target, that I picked up on clearance almost 2 years ago.  

And finally, I put the pictures and art that used to be above our bed in a cascading pattern around our sitting chair. It was nice that I didn't have to buy a single piece of art or frame! I did, however, apply some more rub n' buff to that bottom frame to tie it in with the curtain rod. The sitting chair is actually a dining chair we had bought from World Market about a year ago. It ended up being too big for our table and we put in our room to put shoes on, etc. 

So that's our master bedroom. I really have loved all of the updates we've made. It's such a peaceful and calming space to call our own!

Saturday, April 5, 2014

Recently (A Photo Overload)

It's been a busy last few weeks with big (and little) events that are worthy of noting on this here blog. Most importantly, my older sister, Brittney, had her baby! We were all so overjoyed to welcome her second boy, Chandler, into the world. He is perfect in every way. I was lucky enough to be able to watch the birth. I'm so grateful for that incredible experience to be in the room as a perfect child of God came into the world. And luckily, it was a routine delivery - which we were all so relieved about. Congratulations, Brittney! 

Max and Clara are getting so big! They are about 5 1/2 months right now and I feel like we are entering a whole new world of baby-dom with introducing solids, experiencing new toys, almost rolling over and sitting up. But I can honestly say each new phase has been so fun. We love how smiley and interactive they are now - I feel like I have two little buddies hanging out with me all day! 

I also love how they are totally aware of each other. They hold hands, touch each other, smile and coo and almost roll on top of each other all the time. I can already see the "twin love" I have heard so much about forming. It melts my heart. 

I am wanting to capture the sounds, smells, and little moments that make up our days. Time is flying so fast! I loved when I walked into our room and caught Russ reading the "Twin to Twin" book to our twins. :)

I feel like each week a new personality trait or ability starts to shine. Some moments are capture below:

Clockwise from top left:
* Both have become so vocal - Max will just lay on the floor and happily "yell." He just likes to be heard. Don't we all, Max. 
* We have started using the Johnny Jumper (or whatever it is called) and a Baby Einstein exersaucer. Right now both Max and Clara can only last about 10 minutes in each thing, but I anticipate when they are entertained for a little longer. :)
Their little personalities are really starting to shine. Max loves his teddy bear and must have it with him when he sleeps day or night.
* One day I unknowingly dressed myself like Max. From what I hear, this is something that happens often with mothers and their children.
* Clara is like a little monkey and is always holding her little feet. 

Monday, March 17, 2014

Viva Mexico!

We just returned from a week in beautiful and sunny Play del Carmen, Mexico. You may be raising your eyebrows thinking "you took two 5-month-old babies to Mexico?!" I know, it sounds crazy. But we went with Russ's family as a celebration of my wonderful mother-in-law's 60th birthday in her home country. :) We felt so blessed to be able to go, and how do you turn down a trip to Mexico? Needless to say, having the twins made pretty much everything more difficult, but it was still a lovely week in a warm and tropical location!

Clara and Max, lounging poolside with their beverage of choice. :)
Just for the record, this is one of my new favorite pictures of all time.

Clara with her Aunts Marcella and Natalie and adoring cousin Lucy. 

Hangin' with my girl.

The birthday girl and two of her grandsons (Benny and Max). This picture just exudes happiness. Max was hamming it up. I love his little face.

Both babies swam for the first time. Max was really unsure about the whole ordeal. He had this face pretty much the whole time we had him near the water. Hopefully he warms up to the idea for this summer. :)

Max and Russ chillin' at the pool. I love his belly and low-riding swimsuit. Haha.

I mean, look at those faces.

Our little family of 4!

Laying in the hammock was probably one of my biggest highlights of the trip. So relaxing. I love how relaxed my two men look in the picture. 

One day we left the resort and went to a place called Xel-Ha, which was a fun park where you could zip-line, snorkel, swim with dolphins, etc. It was gorgeous.

We were very ready to come home and get these babies back to their schedule (it's crazy how much they get messed up when they leave their routine), but dang, I already miss that beautiful weather and scenery Mexico has to offer! Thanks again to Russ's parents for that amazing trip of a lifetime!

5 Months!

Just for tradition sake, I need to document the babies turning 5 months! I'm probably sounding like a broken record, but I really can't believe how fast time is flying. I also know pretty much every mom says this, but I am loving each and every new phase we hit. Right now Max and Clara are sooo much fun. They smile, chuckle, and coo all day long. Ok, maybe not all day (no one likes exaggerating), but they really are extremely happy babies. Sleeping through the night has done wonders to all of our lives. Neither one has rolled over or sat up on their own, but I think we are close. :) I love my babies so very much. We are almost to half a year! Eek!

As I've mentioned before, it is extremely difficult to get TWO babies smiling at the same time! The picture after this had Max smiling, but I liked this one because it shows how they always reach out to each other and hold hands/arms. It melts my heart!

Tuesday, March 4, 2014

Nothing Is More Important

I heard about this article from my friend Rachel. When I first started reading the article I thought it was a joke. And then when I realized that this girl was so blatantly hating on any woman who wants to be a wife and mother, I felt incredibly sorry for her. Obviously everyone has their different time tables and may be waiting for one or both of these things to come to pass, but to demean such a righteous endeavor with hate and ignorance was shocking. 

Being a wife is such an honor. I can't imagine navigating this life without Russ by my side. And then to be a mother. Geez. Obviously I'm newer to this category, but I literally feel as though my heart has been split into three. 

I read the article last night and couldn't stop thinking about it all day. As I was lathering my babies with moisturizer on the changing table, I kept thinking "nothing is more important than this." Nurturing, comforting and raising these perfect little babies is the most important thing I have ever done. I really am so grateful for this opportunity to mother Max and Clara.  

I'm obsessed with their little feet! They are so cute and chubby. Clara has recently found her feet and is always holding them when she's laying down. It's so dang cute.

By the way, I need to document the fact that we hit a huge milestone a few weeks ago. After 4 months of extreme sleep deprivation (I'm talking getting up 5-6 times a night consistently), Russ and I were desperate enough to make these babies cry-it-out. We had a few incredibly miserable nights, but it paid off! They slept through the night and haven't really gone back! WOOT! Occasionally we will hear them wake up, but they always put themselves back to sleep. Clara has especially loved the schedule and now sleeps a little over 12 hours every night. Oh sleep, we have all missed you. Welcome back! (and please stay?!)

Wednesday, February 19, 2014

All In a Years' Time

I fear that this blog has quickly become a "twin overload" picture montage. I would apologize, but I'm not really that sorry! These little people have stolen our hearts and also all of our attention. :) I wouldn't have it any other way. 

This last weekend, Valentine's weekend, Russ and I kept reflecting on how much has changed since last Valentine's day. Last year at this time we were knee-deep in IVF treatments with shots and appointments galore. In fact, we had tried to escape the stress of it all by going on a little "stay-cation," but that weekend was also a major bust. It was the first night of a new shot which Russ had to administer in my butt. Long story short, there was blood and tears and a ruined weekend. Ha ha. Oh what a difference a year makes. This year my aunt was kind enough to stay with the twins as we had a casual evening to dinner and a movie. Not surprisingly, we couldn't wait to come home to our two little babies. 

On Presidents day we had the twins' 4-month appointments. Wow! I can't believe they are that old. Both twins were in the 90th percentile for height and head circumference (no surprise there), and about the 50th percentile for weight. 4 months down, eternity to go!

This picture melts my heart.

Clara loves her little doggy. Clara is such a content and happy little girl. She makes you earn her smiles and they are near impossible to capture on camera :)

Max loves balloons. Russ got a balloon for his birthday in January and it is still bringing smiles!

This little boy is so happy. He makes me smile.

Saturday, February 15, 2014

We're Growing!

The twins are 4 months today! Holy shmoly. Max and Clara are changing every day. I love watching as new discoveries are made - like hands! Hands are so fun! Sometimes Max tries to eat both hands at once (highly unsuccessful), and Clara will stick her little fingers so far in her mouth she gags herself. It's funny and sad. This morning we had our first big parent fail. Russ left Clara on the rocking chair and looked away. Next thing he heard was a "thud" and poor little Clara on the floor! Ah! Luckily she is just fine, but lesson learned - we cannot expect them to stay where they are anymore!

We think Clara will be the first to move. Mr. Max is quite content sitting and watching what's going on. Clara is wanting to sit up. She loves tummy time. She squirms and wiggles. It won't be long now. 

This is one of my favorite faces she makes, as she is trying so hard to keep that head up. {heart melter}
Tummy time isn't so bad (for her... Max isn't as big of a fan)

Playing together!

Tuesday, February 4, 2014

Ups and Downs

This picture was one of the few things that kept me keepin' on this week! Sounds dramatic, I know. But quite honestly it has been a ROUGH few weeks. But we survived.

Russ has been traveling with work. I've been on dual baby duty day and night, which is nothing short of exhausting by myself. I got really sick. The babies got really sick. Max had an ear infection. Sleep has been lacking (ha... understatement).

Despite the whining above (hey, it's my blog, right?), I also had some really cool experiences. Last Sunday Russ left town at 3 pm and by 3:30 both babies were screaming and I could not get them to calm down. After 3 or 4 hours of struggling, I finally called my neighbor and good friend to ask if she could come hold a baby. She was over in 2 minutes. After we got them both to sleep, she then told me she was coming back and was spending the night and taking care of all of the shifts. Seriously?! She wouldn't back down. I decided to accept the help. It's something I'm working on. I know people want to help, and I know I need it. Like when another friend brought me old fashioned doughnuts and Diet Coke. Ummm, thank you.

So yes, it's been a bit rough lately. But it's also been so incredibly humbling and heart-warming to know that so many people care. I am blessed!

Friday, January 31, 2014

The Sleeper Series

Max and Clara were wearing coordinating sleepers a few weeks ago, so of course I had to capitalize on the opportunity and get some pictures! I love them so much.

Max: Dad! You are so funny! Tell me more!
Clara:  Bring it on. We'll see if this makes me laugh.

Max: That guy with the poofy black hair is kind of weird...
Clara: Really, dad?

Max: He's pretty funny, I guess. I like him.
Clara: He's STILL going!

Max: Ok, this guy is AWESOME! I'm so glad he's my Dad.
Clara: ....

Max: HAHAHA!! 
Clara: Ok, ok, he's got skills!

Max: I could watch him all night long. Seriously, keep going!
Clara: I've lost interest. Is there some milk around these parts?

Both: Can we help you, Mom? 

Both: Ok, you make our food. We'll give you some cute puppy dog eyes. 

Wednesday, January 22, 2014

January Has Been Busy

At the beginning of January my little brother got married! It was such a happy, happy day. I love seeing Jace so happy, and it doesn't hurt that the girl he married is awesome. Seriously, I couldn't be happier to have Bella as my new sister-in-law. 

A few days after the wedding the twins and I hopped in the car with my parents for a Pacific Northwest getaway. I loved growing up in Spokane, WA and it's always good to go back. I don't know if I'll ever live in Washington again, but it will always hold a special place in my heart. Russ was able to come up for about a week as well. We ended the trip with a short stint in Seattle. These twins of ours are now pretty well traveled for being a measly 3 months, but dang, Russ and I were humbled big-time in Seattle. Two screaming babies in a foreign city is no fun. Needless to say, a lot of Saturday night was spent in the hotel. Sigh. Sunday we went to Bellevue and gorgeous Lake Washington where Russ's dad grew up. It was the perfect end to my two-week stay in Washington. 

* I also got to spend some time with Rachel, who is one of those friends - you know, the kind you've known forever and makes your heart feel so good to see again? Every time we see each other (which sadly is every few years), it's like we pick up where we left off. Love you, Rach!

** And now I am done with travelogues for a while. You're welcome.

Monday, January 20, 2014

A Tropical Christmas

If I'm still within a month of the holiday, it's not too late to post about, is it?

This year my side of the family planned a trip to the Florida Keys for the week of Christmas. Coming from a place that usually has a white Christmas, we weren't quite sure what to make of it. Luckily it turns out that Christmas is just as magical in a tropical place! It was a bit crazy and hectic traveling across the country with 2 1/2 month-old twins, but I think I would have done just about anything for a change of scenery. After 3 weeks of bed rest and a few months of staying cooped up inside, I needed to get out. The weather was perfect and the company was even better. All in all, I quite enjoyed our tropical Christmas!

Max and Clara just looooooved relaxing on the dock :)

Christmas morning. I love this picture because it summarizes our crazy life and how crazy and disheveled we feel these days. And by disheveled I mostly mean exhausted.

Our Santa babies (Clara got her first doll for Christmas!)

We went for a quick outing on Christmas afternoon. It was windy as heck, but it sure was pretty.

Mister smiles! I just love that face.

The house we rented had some kayaks. Russ loved it.

We drove down to Key Largo (the most southern point of the United States) and watched the sunset. It was gorgeous!

This picture is too funny not to post. Walking through Key West.

My little family at the beach. 

The view from our deck

A snapshot in what our crazy crew looked like on the plane. Needless to say, whoever had to sit by us was less than thrilled. :)