Here we go with another round of Q&A…you can see the recap of Part 1 here. P.S. I am hoping this one goes a lot smoother than the last, so please be kind with your comments friends 🙂
What is your favorite room in your house and why?Oh, fun question my dear! In all honesty, I love our master bedroom. It’s not the most glamorous, but it’s calming, and it’s the place where I love to relax after a long day. I get asked all the time what color the paint is in there and it’s called Porpoise by Behr…it’s a PERFECT shade of gray! I love the white linens, the hint of color in the coral and yellow accents, and I love all the natural light that comes through the windows. It’s a happy room.
1) Which area of Nashville do you live in, do you like it and why? I am dying to move there.
We live in Sylvan Park, a historic neighborhood right outside of downtown Nashville. It’s perfect for families, singles, and everyone in between and I love how I can be anywhere within the city in about 15-20 minutes. There are parks nearby, a few local restaurants we hit up often, and I think it has a lot of charm with renovations going on all around us! It’s been a great place for us to live-I can’t believe we have already been in our house more than 3 years now.
2) What are some good brunch places in Nashville-especially with mimosas?
Tin Angel, Germantown Cafe, Margot, Mere Bulles, Mack and Kates, Tavern, and Jackson’s. Oh a mimosa sounds divine…”mocktails” just aren’t the same as the real thing, now are they?? 😉
3) When you were my age (26) did you think you would have what you do right now?: cute husband, baby & one on the way, great house. etc.
When I was 26 (I’m 29 now for those that are curious), Jeff and I had recently gotten engaged and I was starting the crazy process of wedding planning. To be honest, I didn’t know what was in our future specifically… we had talked about starting a family pretty soon after we got married, but I had NO IDEA what would transpire just 2.5 years down the road. Honestly, we thought we would travel a lot, possibly move into a loft downtown, and see what happened with other aspects of our lives…obviously things turned out differently. God has really blessed us and not one day goes by where I don’t realize that. I know we are going to face hardships and I just have to rely on Him to get us through those times. I think life is what you make of it and I’ve never been one to sit back and just wait for things to happen-I think you have to go out there and find your happiness and life the best life you can. I know everything happens for a reason!
Chrissy said… (and she has a lot of questions!)
1. Caroline’s first birthday! Please tell us all the details, plans, her wishlist for others to get her and what you plan on getting her.
I’ll be recapping this ASAP. Working on that post with everything all wrapped into one…so many things to show and share with everyone! It’s going to take a bit, but stay tuned, it’s coming I promise!
2. Do you think you will ever go back to work when your children are older? How do you really feel about being a stay at home mom? Do you feel others judge you in any way?
I mentioned this in Part 1, that yes, I will be going back part-time this fall, once we get out of the newborn stage with Carson.
As for being a SAHM, honestly, my emotions change all the time. I’ve said it once, and I’ll say it again..it’s the hardest job I’ve ever had and even though it’s not paid, it’s the highest rewarding job out there. I do admit that I went through stages where I was jealous of Jeff and his career-traveling, client events and fancy dinners…I missed all of that and I felt like he was out on the town when I was stuck at home in yoga pants eating Oreos. As cheesy at that may seem to some, I felt like I lost a bit of my identity when I walked away from my career.
And then there is the whole judgment thing: did I feel judged? Yes. I felt judged by a lot of people- friends, acquaintances, family members, and others too. I don’t think any of these people necessarily meant to evoke that feeling, but they did and it stung quite a bit. The way I look at it is this-as a mother, you’re judged no matter what…but you have to do what makes you happy and the rest shouldn’t matter because those people aren’t living YOUR life.
I mentioned this in Part 1 as well, but I can fill you in a little bit more on the specifics of the house. Both Jeff and I want something that is very southern…a big front porch, lots of outside room for entertaining, an open layout where I can see what my girls are doing when I am in the kitchen, and we want it to be comfortable to suit our lifestyle. I’ve got all kinds on inspiration up on Pinterest (see my Design and Decor board) so there you can see some of the things we are looking at. Our biggest priority is taking our time so that we really think this decision through…from the floor plan to the little odds and ends-we don’t want to rush into making a hasty decision we might regret later. We have a LONG way to go and it’s not going to be complete for at least another 1.5 years so this will be a big ongoing project for us.
4. What are your hopes and dreams for little Caroline and Carson?
As any mother would say, I think the things that stand out most to me in what I want for my girls is to know that they are loved. Growing up, I was told “I love you” on a daily basis, was given tons of hugs and kisses, and knew that no matter what, my family was there for me. I think that is so important in raising children. I hope they have a relationship with the Lord, particularly a lot sooner than I did, and I know that is something Jeff and I will strive to help them with. I want them to be involved in our church, to treat others kindly, and I hope they are generous, and I want them to be happy.
5. Can you tell us your current makeup looks?
I have this on my FAQ page, but have updated it recently with some new beauty finds…check it out here. I don’t change out my look too often from season to season, though I will use darker shadows during the winter and I’ll opt for brighter blush and lip looks during the spring and summer!
6. Current diet/exercise plan.
Right now, I eat about 1800-2000 calories a day (since I am pregnant and had to up my intake about 300 calories). This is usually broken down into 3 small meals and 2 snacks.
Here are some normal menu options:
Breakfast: cereal OR oatmeal OR turkey sausage/egg white/cheese english muffin and coffee
Snack: some type of fruit (banana, mango, apple) or a granola bar
Lunch: salad OR lean cuisine OR PB sandwich and chips with a piece of chocolate 😉
Snack: apple or celery with PB
Dinner: soup and salad/casserole/pot roast/some type of chicken entree/thin crust pizza/etc-depends on if I am cooking or what we feel like
In regards to exercise, I am trying to do some type of workout 2 times a week…usually that entails doing 1.5 miles on the arc trainer coupled with either arm or leg workouts. I stretch daily, and also try to drink at least 64 oz of water everyday!!
7. Could you do a current what your loving every now and then. Like current items you recently bought that you love?
I am always on the hunt for new post ideas and I think this could be fun…maybe monthly?
8. You have mentioned you like organization. Can you show us how you organize and your tips.
Stay tuned for this! I’ll see what I can come up with.
9. How are you keeping memories of Caroline. Do you have a baby book? Do you make photo books? Which website do you use to do this? Do you scrapbook?
I have a baby book I bought for Caroline…I updated it regularly to mark milestones throughout the first year (with pictures, too) and am hoping to finish it before Carson arrives. I wish I had the time/creativity to master scrapbooking, but it just overwhelms me. I have also started doing a family yearbook for each year (that I need to finish for 2012) that will document every month in it with all the things we did…I think this should help eliminate printing off all those unnecessary pictures.
10. How do you guys budget with being on a single income now and doing things like a building a house. Do you follow a system to keep on track? Has it been harder or easier than you thought when you took the leap and started staying at home.
Budgeting is something I leave up to Jeff, mostly because he studied accounting and finance in college and he loves it…no really, he does. His Excel spreadsheets are so elaborate I get confused sometimes. I mentioned in Part 1 that we have a sit down “meeting” once a week to talk through our finances and what all we have coming up that week (i.e. dinners with friends/date night/gift purchases for bdays, home repairs, etc) and we plan it out. It’s been harder to budget than I thought it would be, but it’s something that takes time and both parties have to be on board…there are SO many resources out there for budgeting your money/paying off debt and it’s never to early to start saving! I know a few others have asked me to share some tips and tricks on this so I’ll be sharing some of our methods.
What kind of relationship do you have with your in-laws?
Jeff’s mother lives in another city so we don’t get to see her that often. She comes down to visit us for holidays and such, and we see her when we travel to Knoxville, but as most people with kids know, it’s hard to travel for weekend trips with babies…you have to pack like you’re moving away for summer camp. Jeff’s sister is just about to have her baby girl any day now and we will be travelling to Knoxville to meet the newest member of the family! We venture out to see Jeff’s dad’s side of the family a good bit in California, but his grandmother Esther recently passed away, which has been difficult for their family–she was one incredible lady.
1. We are planning a trip to Nashville next month…any must do’s that we can do with our 8 month old?I mentioned this in Part 1 so definitely check out Cheekwood, Centennial Park, The Zoo at Grassmere, and the Adventure Science Museum! As for places to eat that are kid friendly, there is the Pfunky Griddle, The Pharmacy, Edley’s BBQ, Mafiaoza’s Pizza, Taco Mamacita, and Boscos’ just to name a few. Hope you have a great time in our fun little city!
2. Are y’all planning on more kids or stopping at two? Funny you ask this because Jeff and I have different opinions on this topic…we always knew we wanted to have at least 2 children, MAYBE 3, but now I think 2 is going to be PLENTY to keep us busy, especially since they will be so close in age. He says he thinks I will get “baby fever” again once our 2 gals are out of diapers and are a little more self-sufficient, but we will see. I am not ruling out the possibility of expanding our family in the future, but trust me, you won’t be seeing anymore “big news/guess what” posts from me for a LONG, LONG time. I had someone ask if we would try for a boy and I think it’s funny because I am almost 100% certain if I could look into a crystal ball and we were to have a 3rd child, it would be another girl. My poor husband 😉
Can I see a day in the life post?
Oh this is going to be entertaining…your wish is my command! I’ll get one up ASAP. Our daily routine has certainly changed since the last time I did one of these.
Runner up baby names..?
This is a fun one, and I see a few others out there were curious about this, too. We had a few different options we had written down and ultimately just followed our initial instinct and chose names that we both loved. In the end, it came down to writing down the names to see how they looked, sounding them out together (as some didn’t sound so great coupled with our last name), and then eliminating choices until we reached the final decision.
Girls: Annabelle, Sloane, Anna Claire, Vivienne, and Peyton
Boys: Bennett, Brice, Graham
There you have it for installment 2…stay tuned for the final recap coming soon! I know lots of you still have unanswered questions!!