Wednesday, October 8, 2014

Dear Justin

I decided to write a letter to my husband, and post it publicly. Some may say, this should be something private, not public, but I disagree.

As a teacher, when you see a student who constantly is doing good work and working hard with little to no encouragement, you want to reward them. How? Publicly display their hard work for everyone to see: for others to take example from, for other to recognize, for other to understand and appreciate.

Justin deserves public recognition. He has been awesome throughout this pregnancy, and he deserves praise.

Ok, so if you know me, you know I'm not the mushiest of people. If you're a strong person in my life, I don't feel that I need to reassure you that you are strong, because you don't need it. (At least that's what I think.) But sometimes, it's nice for a non-mushy person, to be mushy every once in a while.\

Justin, this is as mushy as you are going to get.

Dear Justin.

First, let's start by saying, yes you did shut the garage door today. Second, I wanted to write you this letter, because let's be real if I said this out loud.. it would just be weird for both of us. We would end up making some sort of joke about it and then say something sarcastic, and I'll probably do that anyways. But, thank you. Thank you for being amazing during this pregnancy.

I don't really complain (which you like about me) so everyone would assume I am having an easy pregnancy and I am. As much as medically it has been easy, there is another part that is key to my current state of happiness and ease, and that's you.

I read those pregnancy blogs, and let's be real. Some men are dicks. Some ladies are crazy too, but I am thankful you aren't a dick. (I mean sometimes you really ARE, but not deep down!) I haven't worried about anything during this pregnancy. You caused no drama. You are always helpful. You are always supportive, and you

I'm an independent person, and I really don't like to be taken care of. This whole pregnancy thing was new to me, and I didn't really know how to take it. So when I didn't want to talk about how I felt and looked disgusting, you let me be. When I was worried, but didn't want to talk, you let me be. But leaving me be was only part of it. What you also did was tell me that I looked pretty. You told me all the time that I really do look good. You complimented me on my outfits and my hair whenever you could. I never thanked you. I probably said, "Oh my God, I look disgusting" or "Whatever".

I'm really not an insecure person, but I am a female. Growing into a new body isn't easy. I know the looks on people's faces when they lie to you or when they avoid the topic of how you look because your pregnant. You sir, have no poker face. I can always tell when you are lying. Yet, probably the nicest thing you've done, is when you tell me I look pretty and I can tell that you aren't lying. It might seem shallow to other people, but I don't ask for a lot of encouragement, and sometimes I don't ask for it when I need it, but you have been giving it to me whether I ask for it or not. Thank you.

Let's also talk about how awesome you are as a person, provider, and future father. I couldn't have picked a guy who is more excited about having a kid. You've wanted this since the day I met you. We may have disagreed on how to live our young adult lives, but I KNEW that if I wanted an amazing father for my children, you would be it. I don't have to take care of you. You are a grown ass man, and I love that about you. You go to work and bust your ass, and you are driven to be a success for your family. You don't ask for hand outs. You want something, you make it happen. You are always there for your family regardless of the circumstances. You take on other people's burdens so that you can help them. You are a real man.

You don't complain about baby shopping.  You like to organize his room. You help me if I need it. You let me do some of the things on my own, but you are still involved. You actively participate, without smothering. Thank you.
What you display is what a child needs in his life: stability, hard working parents, participation, joy, and real, true, love.

So thank you for making this pregnancy journey so easy. We would both agree that we are the happiest we've ever been together. I know new times are on the horizon, but I wouldn't want anyone else on the journey with me. Now don't let this all go to your head... These last 8 months have been awesome because I am a badass... but so are you.

Love you forever,

Tuesday, September 23, 2014

The Nursery

Being a teacher has taught me, that when it comes to children, everything has a purpose. They are sponges. They hear what you say when you aren't talking to them, they see how you react, and they soak in the environment whether they mean to or not.

When it came to the nursery, I had a plan. My nursery and decor were going to show what I valued in life and my hopes for my child.

"It's just a room. It doesn't matter. They won't remember it anyways."

Part of that is true. The other part isn't true for me. I'm setting a standard for my life and my kid's life... starting with his room. The message?

If you are going to put effort into something, make it meaningful. I want the nursery to look good, just like I like to look good,  but if all I have and all the nursery has is looks... isn't that time wasted? I want it to look good AND mean something. Looking good alone, is hollow. I'm going for deep.

Ok let's not get too deep Ann, damn it's just a room, haha.

So let's get to the good stuff.

My theme: Vintage World Explorer

When I told most people (including my husband), they didn't understand. They gave me that look like, "for a baby?" Also, its hard to picture. I am a big picture thinker..I knew they'd come around, they just had to see it.

Vintage: History. The past can be much more beautiful than the present. Value what may not be rich monetarily, but rich in story and depth. 

World: I like the world we live in. I do think it's a beautiful place. Diversity is great, and while the world has its flaws, you live in it. You better look for the good, or get ready for misery.

Explorer: See the world. Go out on a limb.  Fail, get lost, laugh, learn, and try again. What is more sad than having the world at your fingertips and never living? Never exploring? Being afraid to go somewhere new? Don't be afraid. Go out and have fun.

This is my overview. The wall decal above the fridge was soooo fun. No, it wasn't but I did it alone and bought it from amazon. The globe always started as my inspiration and my friend Chelsea and I love antiquing. She saw one in Noblesville so I picked it up. The suitcases were from my shower. My sister found them and they were super cute!! Now my favorite, the upper left picture. The letters are his name with map paper modge podged on by again, my lovely sister. The camera is a piggy bank and the plane is from DC. I made the wood map from my grandpa's fence. We packed up his house this summer and I wanted to do something with it. He was always making me wood projects in his spare time.. so I passed on something from him to Lucas. 

The shelves hold a ship from my grandpa's house, a fan from China, a bull from Mexico, and the turtle is from AL. We took tons of vacations there. The flag is my grandfathers. He was very patriotic, as am I.  Also, you can't see it but there's a chip of wood from Bloomington on Justin and my first camping trip. I love the quote art! Thanks to Alli Rodebeck for the design! I told her to start an etsy store. The quotes are what I want the theme to represent. 

"Not all that wander are lost" In my opinion, it's not about how fast you got there, it's about how much fun you had on the journey. Plenty of good times come from mistakes and errors. 

I made these gutter bookshelves. Nothing too special here other than.. Reading is important! When you can't go somewhere, read about it! 

This is my last part, and probably the most meaningful. The cross is at the entrance to the bedroom...Justin and I are both Catholic. It's a tradition I've always practiced. It's meant to remind you and protect you with the love of God.  The little mailbox in his room is for letters and postcards from family members. He's already received letters from Vegas from my mom, Thailand from cousin Christopher, DC from his parents and I also included a 115 year old postcard from a family member dated Nov 17th, his due date. 

I've been researching family history and these letters back and forth between my great grandfather and great great grandfather. It's an amazing and real display of love. There is also a postcard to my great grandfather who was station in Texas during WWI. 

My sister had a great idea to bring vintage postcards to my baby shower and family members all wrote a little message to Lucas. In the age of technology emails and texts won't be saved in 50 years, but he will have physical words and proof that his family always loved him. People will come and go in this life, and sometimes a few written words can say so much about a person. 


My mom said something to me one time when I was about 15, and I've always remembered it. "Well, we didn't buy the nicest house we could afford because I wanted to have money for vacations."


I may not have had the prettiest house in the whole town, but damn did we travel. I've visited a majority of the United States and saw how people were different. I valued and liked the differences in people. We took minimum one a year since I can remember. Most of the time it was 3 or 4 a year.

We didn't go to Paris or Tokyo. We traveled, and I learned a lot. I may not have always acted like I loved it then, but I do now. The United States is a beautiful place. It doesn't take much effort to see it. A $500 purse will never outweigh a weekend of memories. That my friends, is my plan.

So Lucas, when you are old enough to look back, you probably won't remember your nursery and that's ok. Hopefully you will be too busy enjoying and exploring, to realize... that was your mom's plan all along.