Thursday, September 28, 2017

three things you need to know.

1.  i get all the hype over fixer upper.  i started watching fixer upper last week, and now i totally understand why they are loved by millions. chip + joanna are so fun, and i'm inspired with each episode. i cannot wait to get my hands on their magazine and book! i came home one day for lunch to find jackson watching fixer upper while jared was cleaning. so cute!

2.  dairy-free cake is da bomb.  i bought this organic chocolate cake at natural grocers last weekend. i nook it until it's deliciously warm and then top it off with coconut whipped cream. it's so decadent. i will definitely still eat this long after i can eat dairy again.

3.  everything can wait when you have a cuddly baby.  jared took a half day off yesterday, and i snapped this photo as i was waiting for him to get home. he brought me a latte, and i sipped on it while nursing jackson. i had a few house tending items i wanted to finish, but jackson fell asleep in my arms, and i decided it could all wait because he will not be this little forever.

Wednesday, September 6, 2017

coming back to me.

"i did not feel like ME after having my firstborn, but it's been the most beautiful journey
 coming back to me and learning who i really am through motherhood."  

i feel those words deep down in my soul. those twenty-nine words strung together perfectly sum up the last two months of my life. motherhood is one of the best experiences, but goodness- it rocked my world in the beginning. there were many moments in those first few weeks that i didn't recognize the girl looking back at me in the mirror. it was more than the physical changes + exhausted eyes. i didn't really know who i was anymore. but - as chrissy so poignantly said - it has been a beautiful journey to re-discover who i am now.

for weeks, i was a typical new mom: uptight about every little thing pertaining to jackson. not willing to accept help because i felt the need to show everyone i could do it all. worrying about the what ifs and should haves. gah, i was a hot mess, y'all. after days of tears + no sleep, jared gave me no choice: his mom was coming over to watch jackson while i showered, brushed my hair, and took a few minutes to myself. not only did that snap me out of those postpartum baby blues, it opened my eyes to the importance of self-care.

i chopped six+ inches of hair off last night. it was a symbolic way of getting rid of the dead stuff in my life. i'm learning that a little bit of "me time" means i can give all of me to my family and be fully present versus giving them every bit of me and being stressed/tired. it isn't selfish; it's healthy.

tauren wells' song - hills and valleys - has been my motherhood anthem. it came on the radio during that first week of jackson's life. i had a moment with the Lord in the car that was so sweet. i'm so thankful that the Lord is close to the brokenhearted and welcomes us back with open arms when we've wandered.

this new dynamic is a challenging, ever-constant learning process. it's wild + messy + humbling + fun + i'm taking in every single moment.

Tuesday, September 5, 2017

day date in OKC.

my new favorite photo  //  refreshing lemonade  //  the cheesecake factory
pink drink  //  animal art  //  where we had our first date!

Monday, September 4, 2017

dairy-free diet.

i mentioned this in passing in another blog post, but i recently started a dairy-free diet. for the first month and a half, jackson cried a lot. not extreme, but maybe just a little more than what's normal for a newborn. we tried everything. [and spent a lot of money trying everything!] after some research, i finally decided to try going dairy-free in hopes that maybe this was the problem.

within three days, it was like he was a different baby! i couldn't believe it. this doesn't necessarily mean that jackson has a dairy intolerance. some babies just have a hard time breaking down a protein in cow's milk. i will re-introduce a little bit of dairy when he is about six months old to see how he handles it. in most cases, a baby's digestive system has matured, so they can tolerate cow's milk.

in all honesty, it really hasn't been that hard to go dairy-free. once i learned what i can and can't eat, it was fairly easy. i also learned:

-  there is dairy in everything!  it was a little disheartening at first because i wondered if all i could eat was air. but i have a cheat sheet that is always with me so i can scan the ingredients label. 

-  while i miss a lot of my favorites [cheese + cake] - nothing matters that much when i see how much happier jackson is

-  i plan to continue a healthier lifestyle. i've always been able to eat whatever i want and not really see the effects. but having great metabolism doesn't mean that what i'm putting in my body is good for me. while i'm not giving up all the things, i am going to find a happy medium. i don't want to fill up on foods that are full of sugar and such, but you best believe when someone has a birthday, i will eat cake to celebrate! 

i actually really enjoy this new diet. here are a few of my favorite treats:

coco whip.  oh, mylanta. i've hated cool whip/whipped cream for as long as i can remember. but this stuff? it's like manna from heaven! i piled it on angel food cake [i had no idea it was dairy-free!] with strawberries.

just ranch. it tastes just like regular ranch. so good!

non-dairy burrito. i pretty much live off these burritos. it's filled with beans + rice. i dip them in the ranch, too!

cashew milk ice cream + coconut milk ice cream.  definitely my favorite treat! that snickerdoodle ice cream alllllllmost rivals my favorite ice cream ever. i will still eat these even after i can eat dairy again.

coffee made with almond milk.  it's no secret that i have a love affair with coffee. at first, i was bummed that i had to give up lattes, but then i realized i could still drink them + substitute it with almond or coconut milk. this almond milk coffee is super delicious, too! [i'm drinking some as i type this blog post actually.]

coconut water. actually i love coconut eeeeeeverthing!  confession time: up until this dairy-free diet, i thought i hated coconut. turns out it's just the texture of coconut, but the flavor? obsessed. coconut milk, coconut water, coconut ice cream - gimme all the coconut-flavored foods!