About Me

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I am a Mom of two young lads, a fitness fanatic and wife to a die-hard Packers/Brewers fan. I worked in corporate america for 12 years. Now I am on a new adventure - raising my sons and working part-time in the fitness industry as a Personal Trainer and Group Exercise Instructor. I hope you stop by and read my updates- family, fitness, or life related!

Tuesday, September 28, 2010

Fun but Busy Fall.

Braden reaching down to feel the cool lake water.
Trying to feed the ducks, but Braden ate the bread instead!
Our cottage at Kavannaugh's.
Braden loving the swing right outside our cabin.
Uncle Kurt and Braden (twins) playing with the light saber.
Braden "oohing" and "ahhhing" in his new room at the lake.

It has been a busy but fun fall. As you know, we are getting our towhouse ready to put on the market within the next two weeks. There have been major projects (like the bathroom remodel that I still need to blog about) and extensive to-do lists that include painting cabinets and doors, to organizing and de-cluttering. Every day I find myself organizing, de-cluttering or painting for at least 3-4 hours at the least. I am waiting for a collapse of energy, but it hasn't happened so I am going to keep on going until it's all done! I think the end is in sight though, two more weeks to get it all done! With everything going on at home, we managed to take a weekend excursion up to the Brainerd lakes area with half of my family (pics above.) We also had Braden's first birthday as I already posted, we had Joe's parents here, and we just had a family wedding which I will put some pics of on the blog soon. This weekend we are off to an apple orchard for a hay-ride and we are visiting some friends who just had a baby. Oh, and Joe managed to get a new job so things are not slowing down yet. So, my blogging has been slacking and I owe you these pics of our weekend up north.

So, the weekend after labor day my Dad and Pam, my sister and her family, and Joe, Braden and I headed up north. We had a large cottage right on Lake Sylvan at Kavannaugh's resort. Those of you that know me well, know that I have a love of that area because my mom's parents lived in Nisswa so we spent so much time up there in the summer. I love going back up there and now Joe and I try to go at least once a year. This was Braden's first time. He loved waking up to the lake view, playing with his cousins Mitchell, Levi and Ava of course and hanging w/ his Bapa. He loved swimming in the indoor pool and exploring a new place of course! He also liked the playset right outside our cottage door. It's a lot of work to bring a little one with you for a weekend away (with all the stuff you need to haul) but once you are there it's fun to see them react to the new environment.

Wednesday, September 22, 2010

Happy Birthday Braden!

Birthday cookie made by Grandma.
Mom and Braden at the Zoo.
Birthday boy at breakfast.
Playing with his new tractor.
Daddy and Braden with his new riding and push toy!

Well today marks the big milestone- Braden is one! The day started off with Braden's year appointment. He had shots, so it wasn't the best way to start the day. We then headed to Como Zoo to see some animals. This afternoon we played a bit around the house. Dad and Braden got to hang out while Mom taught kickboxing. Then tonight we had a bday cookie and opened presents. All day I kept thinking about how last year we were in the hospital not knowing what to expect. The day was full of the unknown and much anticipation. Then at 6:36 Braden John was born and Joe yelled, "We have a son." That is the moment that changed our lives more than we could have ever imagined.

I am writing this letter totally on the fly, and totally from the heart. I did not think about what I wanted to say to you on this first birthday. I am just going to let it flow from my fingers.

I cannot believe that one year has gone by this fast. I remember bringing you home from the hospital and how careful we were driving in the car because we had this brand new life in our hands. We had zero experience as parents and we didn't quite understand your needs or personality yet. We were just hoping that we could figure it out and that you would love us even if it took us a while. :)

Looking back in the last year, I feel like I know you as well as I know myself. When you cry, I am 95% sure I know why. When you wake up in the middle of the night, I can usually figure out why (usually, I say)! When you laugh, I can tell what kind of laugh it is since you have three different kinds. I know what foods and toys you like the best. I know what you are scared of and what you don't like. I know when you need to sleep and eat. I know that I am in love with being your Mom, and it gets better each and every day.

I had no idea what to expect from motherhood, but I know that it's the best thing I have experienced. I watch you grow and change before my eyes each day. I get to be there when you see things for the very first time and say "oooh" and "ahhhh" because you are so excited. I am there when you take a fall and need a hug. I love making you laugh and making you feel better when you are sad or don't feel well. To think that we created you and that you are ours! I am so proud on this day.

We have had the most fun year watching you become this little man that you are. You love to dance, play cars, watch Bobcats and any construction going on. You love to get thrown into fluffy pillows or the corner of the couch - it makes you belly laugh. You fall asleep doing the downward dog position and now sleep face down w/ your tush in the air and knees tucked in. You have two teeth and are growing some nice dark hair. You wear size four shoe and 12 month clothes. You love dogs. You love swimming and you cry when it's time to get out of the bath. You sleep holding your teddy and with your paci in. You hate your nails clipped and you don't love when it's time to put your clothes on for the day. You love books. You can stand on your own and those first steps are so close!

Braden, what I want to tell you the most on your first birthday is to never forget how loved you are. There was never a day in my life where I doubted the love my Mom had for me, and I want that for you too. I want that love to trickle over your life cup so that it helps you to be confident and succeed in life. I want you to go after your goals and have no fear, like you are already showing when you go head first down the slide. I want you to make awesome friendships and do good in the world. I want the best for you, and I know that you will become a wonderful man...one that we are so lucky to call our own.

Happy Birthday Braden.
Love You Always and Forever,
Your Momma

Sunday, September 19, 2010

First Birthday - Cake Smashing Event!

What a fun weekend. Joe's parents came to town to see Braden around his birthday and they babysat Friday and Saturday so we could get out and have some fun. So, Friday we had a date night and went to dinner at First Course in MPLS. Saturday we went to the Twins game where Joe's 10AAA (Minneapolis Millers) baseball team was awarded their championship rings. I'll maybe do a separate post on that later. Anyway, we got home Saturday early evening and decided to do Braden's cake smashing event then with just us five.

This year we opted not to do a big party for the first birthday. This place is too small to host a bigger party, he doesn't really know the difference anyway, and there's just a lot going on right now....so it was a small celebration, but oh what fun!!

So, the cake smashing event started by taking Braden's shirt off and bringing him outside, less mess on the inside. It was hilarious to watch Braden react to the cake when we put it in front of him. He put his fingers on it at first, in the red frosting, and then started digging in after poking a few of the iced polka dots. He only had a few bites go in his mouth (I think) because he seemed more into the smashing than the eating. He was shaking with excitement and making his funny sounds. We were all laughing.

So, we are excited for our little man to turn one on Wednesday. We can't believe this time has come already. I will post some pics on Wednesday when we give him his presents. Thanks to Jack and Theresa for coming to celebrate and giving us a little time away. Fun and exciting weekend!

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

The Cheese Stands Alone

It's official, Braden is a standing man these days. He is standing frequently on his own. He gets a nice smirk on his face when I catch him doing it and then he'll sit down quick. In this picture I am not sure what face he is making, but it has been his latest camera-ready pose. I am excited and scared at the same time of his standing because I know walking is right around the corner and I will never be able to keep up. He is one year old a week from today so like I said in one of my past posts, he is sprinting to get to that one year marker!

I have been negligent to my blogging in the past two weeks. We were up north for a long weekend so I will have to post pics of that soon. I have been using all of my spare/free time (when Braden is sleeping) to organize and de-clutter our townhome so we can get ready to put it on the market. It is no small feat let me tell you. I have no idea how three people live in this place with all the stuff we have crammed in here. Hopefully I can continue to make it look nice and we can get the ball rolling soon. More to come!

Sunday, September 5, 2010

End of Summer Fun - Labor Day Weekend

With the approach of Labor Day looming last week, I got this motivation to squeeze in every ounce of summer fun while I still could.

Thursday I bought corn on the cobb so I could have Braden try it before it goes out of season. Low and behold, not only did he eat the kernels that I cut off, but when I gave him the cobb to try he was able to nibble off some kernels with just his two bottom teeth! I put the cobb down on my plate and of course he pointed and wanted it again. Oh what fun. Now we are on to nibbling nectarines and plums. :)

Friday came, and I decided to brave the MN State Fair with Braden and his stroller in tow. It was freezing (like 50 and windy), but I was determined to show him the lights on the midway and animals in the barn. Why would I do such a crazy thing? Well, because that's the kind of Mom I am - FUN. :) Aunt Jess even met us for a while since she was working out there. Even though we spent only about 2.5 short hours at the fair (after the time it took me to drive in morning rush hour traffic and fight the fair parking crowd), it was a ton of fun because Braden loved seeing all these new things at the fair. He pointed, and said more "ooohhhhhs" than I thought ever possible. He got to try his first corn dog and a bite of a Sweet Martha's cookie. His favorite thing? The Midway: loud screaming, music and rides up in the air, and of course sitting on the Bobcat and four wheeler as you can see by the pictures above.

On Saturday, we then headed to our friends' cabin. We didn't really go out on the water because it was a little chilly, but we still had fun. Braden got to take a nice stroll while pushing a red wagon. He also was surrounded by people that played with him and entertained him. He "oohed" and "ahhhed" at everything inside and outside the cabin. His favorite thing? Probably sitting on the snowmobile or pushing the wagon of course.

For some reason, with all of these activities in this post I have noticed how big my little boy is getting. I guess I know my baby boy is growing up when he can:
1. Eat corn on the cob- even with just two bottom teeth!
2. Sits in a Bobcat nice and still like he understands what it's for
3. He practically runs while pushing a wagon. This little body doesn't even look right in an upright position walking- he seems too little! BUT, I am realizing that everyone is right when they say the famous "it goes so fast." I was so sick of hearing that phrase, but indeed it is true. I am so proud of my big boy and all of the things he can do now!

Wednesday, September 1, 2010

Passion for Fashion

I know most of you come to read updates on Braden or see what we are up to, which we appreciate by the way. :) However, I want to change it up a little and throw in some random topics to broaden my blogging scope! Here it goes.

My topic today is fashion. I believe I got this from my Mom who loved shopping, and off we went to TJ Maxx each school year for a major shopping spree. We also frequented Maplewood and Rosedale malls for other shopping excursions throughout the year.

Let's just say that being a stay-at-home has put a damper on my ability to shop. Money is the obvious reason, then we'll tack on the fact that I don't really need new clothes and also add that shopping with an 11 month old is impossible. Even though I don't work at a trendy company anymore or check out all the latest fashions as I walk through the skyways downtown, I do keep up on all the reality shows and subscribe to US Weekly. :) No, if you have a passion for fashion it never goes away.

So, I am attempting to find creative ways to tap my fashion side now that I am not living amongst it on a day-to-day basis. Here are my two ideas.

1.) Personal Shopper. I would love to help other people shop! So, if you have an event that you are struggling to find an outfit for or maybe you want to fix up something in your current closet with fun shoes and accessories for a reunion or a party- this is what I love! You can let me help you. I can start my own personal shopping business by meeting you at the mall for an hour. The above picture is an example of me shopping on a budget- cute trendy dress (for less) and a fun necklace to match. See, let someone else with the eye do the work if it stresses you out or you just don't know where to start.

2.) Clothes Swap. My current closet is a major frustration of mine. I need to clean it out but I am avoiding it because I am struggling to find out what clothes I want to keep. I know that now that I am not in the corporate world, I can probably part with some business clothes. I also have a bizarre portion of clothes dedicated to going out/party shirts. No questions please, I just have a lot of clothes and must have gone through a party shirt stage or something. Obviously I won't be needing those!! So, I would love to do a clothes swap! I bring business clothes and party/fun clothes and in return I am looking for everyday casual clothes or maybe a few things I can wear out to dinner or happy hour. So, it can be a clothes swap party- we can even have a glass of wine. (we have to wear the same size clothes though, so we'll disclose that if you are interested.)

So, if either of these interest you- email me at: sullivanbrid@gmail.com and we'll talk! Next post will probably be a Braden update, I promise. It's good to be a diverse blogger.