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!

Monday, September 30, 2013

Braden is FOUR!

Low and behold, our oldest guy turned four on Sunday, the 22nd. I can't believe that
just over four years ago we had no idea if we were having a boy or girl, or what parenthood would have in store for us. It has been an amazing journey. One that I can't even explain in words. I have learned more in my job of "Mom" than in any job I have ever had. I would like to write Braden a note, so he can someday read this and see what life was like at four through my eyes.

Sept. 22, 2013

Dear Braden,
  Today you are four, which means that four years ago today you entered this world and into our family.  What an amazing day that was, a day that we will never forget. Our family of two became three. You entered this world pretty gracefully and I would say you are still just as graceful. You catch on to things so quickly- both physically (the way you can throw or hit a baseball) and mentally (with the way you can recite a lyric or the Brewers line-up after hearing it only once). Before you entered the world, you did flips in my tummy at bedtime and bounced around when you heard loud music. I laugh because this still holds true at age four- you bounce around when you hear music and at bedtime you are running around asking for more books or jumping on the bed. :) You are full of life and energy! You don't miss a beat with all of your questions and eagerness. I admire that.

You have been in our lives for only four years now but it also seems like forever you have been with us. I cannot imagine life without you. I look forward to your "hey Mom" every morning when you run into my room. I adore your smile and laugh. I am so proud of the little man you are becoming- the way you say please and thank you, the way you hold the door open for people when we are out and about, and how you greet people with a big "Hi"- ok, well this is usually people that you know but I can respect that you don't like to talk to strangers. :) Although you are at the stage in life where you still need my help, I try to give you independence to learn and grow on your own. I love how you like to be around people and you don't want to miss out on the fun. You are always up for any adventure I throw your way and you always show your excitement.

I can't explain in words how proud I am to be your Mom. I don't probably tell you enough how proud of you I am, often I stand back and watch you with a big smile (you have no idea I do this). I am not one to brag about my kids out loud, so I will do it in writing. I love how when we go to parties that you immediately blend in and only come to me when you need something. It doesn't matter if you are hanging out with a 10 year old or a 2 year old, you just blend right in. You are so easy to be around. I love your laid-back manner, although sometimes I hurry you through breakfast when we are running late, I still appreciate that you take time to play and that you are enjoying life. I wish I could protect you from all that is bad in the world, but I know that no Mom can do this. I wish for you to stay strong and true to yourself. To be kind to others always, to follow Dad's advice on being a leader and not a follower and to respect people. I want you to have your own opinions and make decisions, but not to affect other people's opinions or decisions. I hope you stick to your passions and are always confident in who you are and how much you are loved. You are an amazing, special boy and we are so glad to have you as ours!

You are our first born, our oldest "little" dude. I love how you show your little brother how to do things and help him. When you ask him to come with you to go get your toothbrush (or whatever else), it shows me that you always like company and you like being connected. I know it's easy to fight with your brother, especially when he takes toys or he has something you want, but he's your only brother. I want you to always remember that family is your rock and your foundation. We are always here for you. Life will have it's ups and downs, but family will support you through it all. I want us always to be grounded and focus on what is important in this world. I can speak from experience that life can change in an instant. I don't want us to have any regrets- I enjoy all our memories and look forward to making them more and more with you each day!

Monday, September 23, 2013

Summer RECAP!

We had a fabulous summer. I can't believe how fast it went. Of course, the weather wasn't officially "summer" like weather until the end of June here in MN, so no wonder why it felt so short. Anyway, I wanted to recap some of the highlights:

  • T-ball and Soccer (Braden)
  • Outdoor Bootcamp classes (Mom)
  • Summer Fun Days or what I call "camp" (Braden)
  • Trip to Chicago (Mom)
  • Fishing and Golf outings (Joe)
  • Como Zoo (animals and rides) for Liam's Birthday
  • New Job (Mom)
  • Endless hours of swimming at the pool
  • Squirt guns and water table fun
  • Birthday Biking Happy Hour (Mom)
  • A few days at the lake for fishing and boating (Sullivan family) 
  • 20th Reunion (Mom)
  • Family Vacation to the North woods of WI (Hammonds)
  • Boys' first Drive-In to see Monsters U (for Dad's Bday) 
  • Parks, parks and more parks!
  • Teddy Bear Park and Nelson's Ice Cream
  • Playing tennis
  • Afton Summer Festival
The list goes on. I am sure I forgot a handful of things, but these were some that came to the top of my mind. We had an awesome summer. We ate plenty of popsicles and ice cream. We took spontaneous adventures. We stayed close to home some days and just went exploring to throw rocks in ponds or look for ducks. The boys were super fun and adventurous. I am holding on to this stange in their lives where they appreciate the small things and are easily entertained. Now fall is here and we are relishing all the sunny days to play outside.

Friday, September 6, 2013

Braden: 3 years + 11 months

Well the end of August we celebrated Liam turning two, but I can't forget to do my monthly update for Braden as well. Braden will be the big FOUR next month, so he just keeps growing and growing into a little man before our eyes. Today he said to me, "do you recognize this?" and "is this familiar?" so I think he is trying to be a really big boy as he nears the four mark. Geez. Braden had a wonderful summer- the highlights include: fishing, parks, tee-ball and soccer, overnight with cousins at the cabin, Hammond family vacation, ice cream at Nelsons, Teddy Bear Park a couple times, Como a couple times, couple of movies, swimming and more swimming, a few day camps and the list goes on!

Braden is our go-with-the-flow guy and is up for anything, anytime. He is a little pokey sometimes, so the mornings when I work I spend a good amount of time telling him to get moving, ha, but he is a pretty good listener and good helper. His energy surprises me, he doesn't nap anymore and is go-go all day long but then seems to crash pretty hard at night which is good. He is full of life, energy and humor. He wants to run with me and play any sport imaginable (other than his favorites even)- from golf and tennis to volleyball and basketball. He really improved on his swimming this summer- wearing goggles and throwing toys into the little pool and diving in for them and staying under for a few seconds. He is a determined little guy. He watches others do things and then wants to do them on his own and will practice until he can do it. I admire his determination at such a young age.

Braden is also our guy who loves constantly being around people. He asks to play with neighbors or friends all the time. If he sees someone from afar (that he knows), he wants to go say hi. Although he is sometimes shy around new people, he is not shy at all around those he is familiar with. Hmm, sounds a bit like Dad to me. :) Anyway, Braden loves playing with other kids and at parties or gatherings I will not see him the entire time as he is immediately adjusted to the pack of kids.

Our oldest guy is growing before our eyes! He amazes us with his eagerness to learn and try new things, although in the food category that is not so true. Ha. Braden is smiley and inquisitive. He loves to read and do his I spy books at night. He is still our movie buff. Braden is one of those kids that you can take wherever and he will fit blend right in with everyone. He constantly has a toy or two in his hands. I can't believe how old he is getting, so that is the very reason I do these monthly blog entries so I can keep track of it all!

Monday, September 2, 2013

Liam is TWO!

Our littlest dude turned the big TWO on August 22.  The day before, I took both boys to Como because Liam told me he wanted "rides and cake" for his birthday. We saw some animals first, and then we hit the rides. We had a great time, the highlight was me almost getting sick on the teacups and the boys laughing as we kept spinning around. :) They had a blast on the rides and were giddy and happy. I had a lot of moments where I sat back and watched them with a big smile on my face. It's amazing how fast they grow, and how fun they are in this stage.

On Liam's actual birthday, what a riot he was. He woke to a balloon drop in his crib and more balloons hanging all over the ceiling in the kitchen. If you know him well, you can imagine the expression on his face since balloons are one of his greatest passions in life. :) Hopefully I captured a few of his happy Birthday moments in the pictures above. The day was also filled with donuts, lunch outside, a puppy cake, pizza and presents when Dad got home from work. He coincidentally also got to see both Grandpa's on his birthday- what a treat!

As our littlest man turns two, a lot of things come to mind. First of all, it is crazy to see how fast he has grown. He speaks in full sentences now and is as independent as a two-year-old can be by always saying "I do it myself Mom" or "I got it." Liam brings a lot of joy to our family with his spunk and energy. He is a very sensitive little man and wears his emotions on his sleeves- whether happy, sad or mad. Liam is our blondie, he often gets called our little surfer dude with the two really blonde patches on each side of his head. He looks just like I did as a toddler- but of course he has the brown eyes like Joe. He is sporting quite the summer tan. He is really into imaginary play right now, I love listening to him play and zooming planes up and over his head saying "coming in for a landing." It's just too cute - I love this stage. Liam is a fun little guy to be around. He loves to dance, still loves puppies and balloons, he and his brother are starting to play more together which is nice (plenty of fighting of course), and he is my guy that could stay and do anything for a long time and gets mad when I pull him away. He plays on his own pretty well- zooming cars, trains or talking with little figures. He comes running to Mom when there are loud sounds (sensitive ears too), and I can hear him talking away in the morning before I go in and get him out of his crib. He often asks, "where did Braden go?" when he doesn't see his big brother in sight. He is constantly still doing and saying whatever big brother does. Liam Jude is a happy-go-lucky little guy who constantly keeps us on our toes and makes us smile and laugh. Happy Birthday little guy! We are so proud and amazed by you!