UA-114812973-16 Well Rounded: 2017

2017 - What A Year!

WHAT A YEAR!!! I could probably write a full essay on this year but I'll spare you the details. I thought I'd share our year in pictures instead. 

The lake we lived on froze over for the first time in 9 years! We feel so lucky to have lived there to experience that.

We got outside A LOT the first half. Pre-pregnancy and morning sickness. Which was one of our new year's resolutions!

We went to Disneyland!!!

We explored our hometown and found some cool colored walls!

We drove the PCH down to San Francisco...post to come. Clearly way behind.....





We camped together for the first time and most definitely not the last time. 

Went to our first tulip festival

Did more hiking and spending time with family!

And more family.

And even more. Just can't get enough!

I got a new job a few weeks prior to moving to Tacoma at Premier Media Group!

We celebrated one year of marriage! And just a week or so before we found out we were pregnant!

We've watched our little baby boy grow!

Squeezed some last minute adventuring in (post to come).

And soaked up all the time we possibly can together when Blake isn't in school!

And some other things we didn't take pictures of, in no specific order.  

- Blake finished up his 2nd quarter of nursing school.
- We moved to Tacoma.
- I had to quit my job after only four months due to a pretty rough first trimester. Huge disappointment but worth it for the huge blessing we had received.
- And I'm sure a million other things!

Boy (no pun intended) are we excited for 2018. We have lots of exciting plans but the biggest being welcoming our little baby boy into our family come the beginning of April. I've been searching for years to find a real purpose through work etc. but something tells me the end of my search is just around the corner!

What are you most excited for in 2018?

#thankfultuesday - Choose to be Grateful

Choose to be grateful no matter what. - Dieter F. Uchtdorf

It is easy to get caught up in wanting/expecting the perfect Christmas gift. But how about we get caught up in being grateful, no matter what? 

1. The wonderful Christmas season.
2. Believe it or not, the cold weather. Now it just needs to snow!
3. For the #LightTheWorld campaign that is helping me be more service-focused this year. See here.
4. For the little kicks, I've been feeling from my baby boy. 
5. For Blake and his never-ending love and understanding.
6. For Hallmark Christmas movies. THE BEST!
7. For my family. All over the country and I love every little bit of interaction I get with them.
8. For a tight budget during the Christmas season (Sounds crazy but I'm a little grateful for it. It is really helping us pay attention to the reason for the season.)
9. For warm blankets.
10. For Christmas lights. 

What are you grateful for this Christmas season?

Oh Christmas Tree!

 Last week we got our Christmas tree! Growing up we always went to this wonderful little place called Tom's but last year they got new owners and totally killed the Christmas spirit by upping the prices a ridiculous amount! 

So this year for the first time we went to a place called Hunter's Family Farm down in Lacey. You can either cut down your own or they have some pre-cut you can choose from. For the first time in my life, we didn't cut it ourselves but that is okay because we still had a good time and got the perfect little tree for our tiny apartment!

I absolutely love getting the Christmas tree though. It has to be one of my favorite traditions. I don't know if I can even say why. Maybe because it is usually the kick-off of all the Christmas traditions, it is an excuse to have a tree in your home, they look so magical all lit up. I'll stop there before I get too crazy! 

Blake has this thing for goats. Don't ask me why.

Blake holding our Christmas tree.
What is your favorite part of getting a Christmas tree??

Triple Berry Pie

Blake and I decided to test out our Thanksgiving pie recipe out the week at our Friendsgiving. SO glad that we did because we ended up changing up the recipe we had found and it was 100% better! 

My favorite thing about this recipe is that it is extremely easy to make. The filling literally took me 20 minutes top! Thank you to Made to Be Momma for inspiring us. Your recipe was delicious, just not the exact flavor we were going for!

Triple Berry Pie Recipe

Triple Berry Pie

Ingredients


  • Double crusts for one 9'' pie pan
  • 7 cups frozen berry mix
  • 1/2 cup white sugar
  • 1/2 cup brown sugar
  • 2 Tbsp lemon juice (full lemon)
  • Lemon zest
  • 4 Tbsp cornstarch - may need a touch more
  • 2 Tbsp butter
  • 1 egg white, beaten with a fork

Instructions

  1. Add the berries, sugars, lemon zest and lemon juice to a large saucepan over medium heat. Simmer, until warm and juicy, about 8-10 minutes, stirring occasionally.
  2. Mix in cornstarch and stir into berries and allow to simmer until thickened, about 4-5 minutes. You want the berry mixture to be thick and not runny.
  3. Remove from heat and stir in the butter. Pour the berry mixture into unbaked pie shell. Add lattice top (or whatever kind of top you'd like). Brush a thin layer of beaten egg white over the top of the pie and sprinkle lightly with sugar.
  4. Bake at 400 degrees F for 45 minutes. Check it after about 25 minutes and place a piece of tinfoil over the pie to prevent the crust from burning.
  5. Remove to a wire cooling rack and allow to cool. You can serve it immediately but I wouldn't recommend it. Much better when it has been allowed to really set. 
Serving Tip: Let cool overnight and then heat up previous to serving! Makes it taste so much better :)

Enjoy!

#thankfultuesday - Healing Balm

Things of things we are grateful for is a healing balm

"It helps us get outside ourselves. It changes our focus from our pains and our trials to the abundance of this beautiful world we live in." 

1. That this week is Thanksgiving!
2. For the TWO Friendsgivings I had this weekend and got to spend time with some great friends!
3. For the deep sleep I've been experiencing for the first time in forever!
4. As always, for this little baby boy growing in my belly.
5. For the sunny days we had over the weekend.
6. For the space heater at my desk.
7. For sweats.
8. For friends who give more than they need to!
9. For my awesome family!
10. For my hard working husband. 

What are you grateful for this week?

Life Lately - Fall

Man what do I even say about life lately. It has been hard, great, different, slow, fast, and so much more! And how is next week Thanksgiving?!

We haven't been up to much because #nursingschool and #pregnant, but we both are still incredibly happy. 

Life isn't as simple as it use to be. Our weekends are no longer filled with #BSadventures or the great outdoors. In fact that usually are filled with Sierra sleeping in, Blake studying in between errands, and a Netflix episode in between all of that as a break for Blake's busy brain. But we're okay with all of this. 

I've had more time to start journaling our life together, learn how to better document it, prepare to become a mom, and learning to run my own side business (if you have any tips for me send them my way because this is all so new for me!). 

Blake is so busy with school but is rocking it. This quarter he has been learning all about what is going on in my body during this pregnancy and also has had the opportunity to do a few clinicals in the hospital in Labor and Delivery, Maternal Care and NICU. He absolutely loved NICU, he couldn't stop talking about it. He is going to make the greatest Dad :). 

And the biggest news of all if you didn't already hear.....WE ARE HAVING A BOY!!!! We really shouldn't be surprised though. My family makes boys like you wouldn't believe. My baby is number 19 for grand children for my parents and mine will be grandson number 13. But we are so excited. Today I was taking a walk during my break at work and I couldn't help but be thrilled that I was getting another Blake in my life. 

Neither of us wanted to do a reveal so here is our quick version of our announcement. 



10 Things Every Pregnant Women Needs

10 Things Every Pregnant Women Needs

After sharing all about what I needed to survive my morning sickness I decided it was time to find out and share what I was going to need to make it through the next half of this pregnancy. I did some research, I asked around and I adding things that I've found that I need. So here you go!

 The top things you'll need to survive your pregnancy. 

1. Maternity Clothes: I haven't started wearing anything but maternity pants yet so I'm definitely not the authority on this but I do know you won't make it far in your regular pants. I live in my maternity pants, leggings and/or sweats. I think I gave up on my regular pants at about 12 weeks or so believe it or not and I'm a pretty small person.  Here are some I like and some that have been recommended to me: H&M, Old Navy and Motherhood Maternity.

2. Belly Wrap: I haven't tried this yet but I've heard some mom's swear by it to help with the back pain. So try it out!

3. Prenatals:  Of course these are a must have. Probably the only thing on this list that is required! But it is up to you what kind you use. The nice thing was that my current vitamin regimen had everything that I needed for my prenatals so I could just keep on taking what I was taking. These are from DoTerra and you can get them cheaper if you order them through a rep so let me know and I'll hook you up with mine. She is fantastic, she is my mom so I'm biased, but still pretty much the best!

4. Pregnancy Pillow: I inherited this one from my sister and I have a feeling I'm going to have to start using it soon. I've had a lot of mom's swear by this as well and from a lot of my reading it really helps you get through the night more comfortable. And as a pillow lover I'll take any excuse to use another pillow!

 5. Shoes Without Laces: So for my birthday this year I got myself this pair of vans I was dying to have. Who knew I was being so intuitive. Luckily I'm not at the point where I can't reach my toes yet but make sure when you do hit that you're not miserable! And I've also heard Hickies are great too (don't go off the name, you should actually check these out)!

6. TUMS: Again, I haven't used these yet but I hear I'm going to need them soon. So get yourself ready and stock up!

7. Heating Pad: Ah this has been a lifesaver. The aches have started already so this has been really needed! Luckily I already had one lying around. 

8. Water Bottle: Ah yes, water bottle. I can't stress how important it is to be drinking water during your pregnancy, no matter how gross it tastes (symptoms of 1st trimester). I found myself crazy busy one day at work and didn't drink any water. You do the math. Stress + dehydration = ER visit. You can bet I didn't make that mistake again. I don't go anywhere without my Hydroflask. 

9. Lotion: If you're already pregnant you might notice your belly starting to itch. I'm not a science guru but I think that is from your skin stretching. So I make sure to rub lotion on my belly whenever I get out of the shower and it really helps! I hear it helps with stretch marks also. I'll let you know in 20 weeks if that is true. 

10. Snack Boxes: And you've already heard my lecture on this. Especially during your 2nd and 3rd trimester. I've already started feeling myself get dizzy if I'm not keeping up with small snacks in between the main meals. So I'll say it again, always have snacks on you! You're growing a baby, no more diet eating!

If you're pregnant or have been pregnant what was a must have for you??


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#thankfultuesday - Be Kind and Be Grateful

So be kind and be grateful that God is kind. It is a happy way to live!

#truth - if we all were just more kind and more grateful the world would be a happier place. That is all. 

1. Buy One Get One Free holiday drinks at Starbucks
2. Baby ultrasounds and our baby BOY!!! (More coming soon)
3. Talking to family
4. A sister who puts up with my millions of blogging questions
5. Going to bed at 8:30 pm
6. My journal
7. Pie
8. Blessings from my Heavenly Father
9. Warm blankets
10. Happy people. 

What are you grateful for this week?

#thankfultuesday - Give Thanks

Let us give thanks for what we are - Dallin H. Oaks

I know the #thankfultuesday posts come and go but it is extremely hard to not get it up and going in such a wonderful month full of gratitude. 

It is so easy to get caught up in the rough patches and trials of life and not so easy to take a moment, and just be grateful for our life and the wonderful journey God has given us. 

1. This little baby growing inside of me. 
2. The two days of snow we got (I know I'm nuts, blame it on the baby). 
3. My giant warm coats. 
4. The world's most supportive husband. 
5. My new side gig I got going on (check it out here: https://sierrar.ashleylemieux.com/)
6. The holiday season. 
7. That FINALLY, my nausea is slowing down a bit. 
8. To have the greatest OB doctor. 
9. That the darkness and cold aren't making me depressed like most years. 
10. Each of you, or even if just one, who take the time to come on here and read my random thoughts. 

What are you grateful for?


How I Survived Morning Sickness

Pregnant women with letters saying "how I survived morning sickness"


I won't go into the details but "morning sickness" was/is crazy rough for me. 18 weeks and I'm still experiencing it. And I'd like to shake my fist at whoever named it morning sickness, clearly, they didn't experience the "all day sickness" that most women have. Anyway, that's not the point of this post. The point is to share some of the different things that made it somewhat bearable and helped me keep enough food down to keep me out of the hospital. 

Now remember this, every pregnancy is different. I had so many women giving me advice (which I appreciated btw) but many of their tips didn't even touch nausea or sickness. What worked for me may not work for you, but it might. Welcome to the world of pregnancy. Where your body is experiencing things it never has before and it is all a guessing game on what will help you feel good. 

I would also like to throw out there that I'm a pretty healthy eater normally and as you'll learn from my below list, they aren't even close to the healthiest of foods. My mom thought the same thing and did some research for me. I'm not a sciency person but basically, the way the hormones are reacting in the first trimester get us craving carbs and unfortunately, those carbs keep nausea at bay. So if you're a healthy person like me, don't stress, the baby will still get the nutrients it needs. Just don't plan on eating this way for all nine months! If you're one of the lucky ducks who can get veggies to stay down, I applaud you and am jealous of you. Keep it up!

Without further ado. 

How I survived/am still surviving morning sickness:

1. Lemon Drops: I didn't believe it when I read the idea myself but I had some lying around so I tried it. MIRACLE! For a few weeks, this was my go to. If I wasn't hungry but was crazy nauseous I just popped in a lemon drop, and just like that, I'd get some relief. I'm sure my teeth didn't love it, but this mama sure did.
2. Pringles (or any type of chip probably): It was a quick snack that again, immediately killed that nausea for me. Unfortunately, it didn't last as long as something more substantial but good for when I was out and about or at work.
3. Ginger Ale: This is probably the only thing that I never stopped using. I could take the smallest of swigs and it would settle my stomach (unless of course, I'd passed the point of no return). I could only do strong flavored ginger products the first week and so ginger ale was my savior!
4. Fries (or any potato): A great food item to add to any meal to help it stay down. I've always loved fries but I've never loved them the way I did for the first few weeks. They settled that nausea like you wouldn't believe. 
5. Small Meals/Snacks ALL DAY: And I mean all day. I probably had a snack every hour if not more. Going longer than an hour meant the worst of the worst in the field of nausea. It was crazy tedious at first but I grew to appreciate having some relief. Don't go anywhere without snacks of some type, I promise you won't regret it. In the second trimester and still experiencing morning sickness I still always have snacks. But I have been able to pull back to about every two hours. 

I'll be honest though, sometimes nothing worked. I just had to lay through and hope to get through it. Just remind yourself, you wanted this baby and it is going to be the greatest blessing in your life. 

Other mama's or future mama's out there - what was your go-to during morning sickness?

Stay awesome, 


tips on I surviving the worst morning sickness ever!

Halloween in Portland

We spent last weekend in Portland! 
My sister was blessing her baby on Sunday so we thought we'd make a weekend of it. We spent Saturday helping them taking their family pictures and then that evening her church was doing there annual Trunk or Treat so we joined in. Blake didn't have much studying to do so it was nice to just have fun and relax. Oh and you bet I cuddled her little boy as much as I could. 5 months and counting!
If you've followed us for a while you know Blake likes to take pictures of me holding him. Well now that is a little more difficult.....and if we're being honest here, Blake had a hard time holding me for too long in these pictures. I guess the baby weight is starting to kick in :).


Is she not the cutest Princess Poppy you've ever seen?! The best part is she actually calls herself Poppy on a regular basis and everything that is pink is Poppy's. 

Bob Ross Halloween Costume
And of course - Bob Ross and his fine work. "There are no mistakes. Only happy accidents."



Happy halloween!

1st Trimester and Lessons Learned

If you haven't already heard I guess the title gave it away and would explain why I haven't written in months. 

We're having a baby!!! Due April 6th and despite how hard it has been we are thrilled! Need some laughs? Enjoy the video we made to announce it. 



We are now at 15 weeks and already learning so much. I'd be lying to you if I said it has been all unicorns and rainbows, in fact it was the exact opposite. It has been so different than anything I've ever experienced in my life. BUT, it has taken me a long time to get here, I wouldn't trade it for anything. And because I don't want to forget it I'm going to share my experience here. Read, don't read, but here it is anyway. 

1. Sacrifice: Beginning of June I started a new job. My position was Marketing Director for this magazine company that was on the beginning of some exciting growth. The team was the best I've ever worked with and it was a place I could lead and be creative. 

We found out I was pregnant end of July and within days the nausea and throwing up kicked in. Without going into to many details I could barely do my job. Over a months time I had gone to the ER twice. First time for a hemorrhage, the second time was because of stress and dehydration after a too busy day at work. After first going part time at work, a ton of prayers, and that second hospital scare, Blake and I decided I should quit and find something a little less stressful. This little baby was not loving the stress of my job and I was only working part-time. 

I thought quitting would be easy. But then I found my way into a temp office to just get some work to hold me over so I wouldn't get bored or restless, and I left feeling like an emotional wreck. I had worked so hard over the past few years in my jobs to find myself sitting in a temp agency. It was a little bit of a blow for my pride. But then after some serious tears and hugs from Blake I had a humbling moment. For the past 6 years more than anything I wanted to be a mom, I wasn't giving up my career for nothing, I was giving up my career for the best career in the world. 

2. Gratitude: I'd be lying if there weren't days in the first few weeks where I wondered if I could get through this, if it would even bet worth it, all sorts of thoughts I'm not proud of. I knew this was what I wanted but I was having a really hard time remembering that. But then I started writing in my gratitude journal again. Just forced myself to find three things that day that I was grateful for. I started being grateful that my body could grow this little baby, even if it meant being so sick all the time. It changed me! I still had bad days, I wasn't getting any better, but the negative thoughts were becoming less and less. 

3. God's Plan: Don't get me wrong, this is a lesson I already knew, but I was really reminded of it. Quitting my job was not an easy thing for me, as I'm sure you've already caught onto. But I knew I was supposed to. I had no doubt in my mind that saying goodbye to my current career was the right step. It was what Heavenly Father wanted me to do, to put my family first. We've seen so many blessings come by following that plan. And knowing we had that confirmation has made it a lot easier each and every day. 

So those are just two of the many, many lessons I learned. And I know I'm going to learn so much more. But guys, I'M HAVING A BABY!!!!! Blake and I have never been more excited. We found out about a week after our 1st anniversary and we are so excited to grow our little family. 

Stay awesome, 


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