Freckles in April: May 2015

Friday, May 29, 2015

Telling the Kids



Aaron and I have talked a lot about when, how, and what to tell the kids about religion in general and my religious views in particular. Originally I told him we should just...not. They're still young (5 and 7) and I worried they would find it confusing and feel like they needed to choose a side. I figured it would sort of come up organically in bits and pieces and maybe that could work?

Then, a couple months ago, Aaron said he really wanted to have a sit down chat with them about it. I was on the fence until Baby 2 very innocently said something to me about how it wasn't good that I was wearing my sleeveless workout clothes into Stinky's school one morning when we were dropping him off late. It broke my heart a little bit to hear him parrot those things he had heard at church and I told Aaron it was definitely time.

We talked quite a bit between ourselves before having the conversation with our kids. We settled on four main points we wanted to emphasize:

1. It's ok to say "I don't know."

Mormons often bear testimony using the words, "I know..." It's common to hear things like, "I know the church is true." and "I know Joseph Smith was a prophet of God." over the pulpit and during lessons. Even if you don't "know" you still sort of feel like you need to use those words. However, it's ok to not know and I want my children to feel comfortable saying that, especially in a church setting. They are, of course, welcome to use that phrasing if they feel they do know in their heart that something is true.


2. It's ok to ask questions.

We will always treat their questions with respect. In our house it's ok to question and to doubt and to discuss. If they ask mommy a question they might get a different answer than if they ask daddy and that's ok too. We like differences and variety!



3. It's ok to discard anything that doesn't feel right to your spirit.

They will hear things at church, the playground, and elsewhere that may not feel right to them. It's ok to let those things go. We will support their faith and belief no matter what it ends up looking like. We want them to trust the voice inside.


4. Be respectful of ALL beliefs, both in and out of the church we attend.

There's such a broad spectrum of beliefs even just within the LDS church. We respect all beliefs. Faith is a very personal thing and we want our friends and family to feel safe with us no matter where they go to church or what they believe.




Aaron also made a good point that we needed to remember to use positive language when discussing my beliefs. When we were discussing things it sounded kind of yucky to say, "Mommy doesn't believe..." so we switched our mindset to focus on the things I DO believe instead. It felt and sounded better.

We couched all of this in a family home evening lesson about world religions. I made a Power Point presentation that included vocabulary words (which we love at our house) and a quick breakdown of major world religions.



With all this careful preparation you'd probably think that we had a nice conversation and ended with a family hug or something. In reality, it was pretty anticlimactic.

Baby Two spent the lesson doing his best impression of a Mexican jumping bean while Stinky kept making these super weird noises. We know they were sort of paying attention because every time we quizzed them on the vocabulary words we learned on the first slide they nailed it but it's entirely possible that they missed the point of the lesson.

At the end we DID drill in respect for different beliefs though, which I think is the most important part. I'M still learning and struggling but maybe if we work at it with them starting young it won't be so hard for them as they get older.

A couple weeks later Baby 2 brought up something he'd learned at church that I don't agree with. I gently reminded him about our FHE lesson and how sometimes mommy's beliefs are a little different. He said, "Oh yeah!" I told him that daddy believes in that particular thing and mommy believes [short, age-appropriate explanation]. He nodded and moved on with life. So far it seems to be a non-issue, which is exactly what we are going for.


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Wednesday, May 27, 2015

Lizard Thicket (+a Giveaway!)


One of the super fun perks of being a blogger is getting to hear about and experience new shops and brands when they come to the Phoenix area. Lizard Thicket just opened in Dana Park in Mesa (at Val Vista and Southern). The vibe is a bit boho and I loved everything I tried on!



I came home with one of their LT Basics tops and I LOVE it. It's the perfect undershirt for some of my more sheer blouses.


I also got this gorgeous candle. It smells heavenly and the cut glass jar was just too pretty to pass up. I spent the morning moving it around my bathroom trying to find the perfect spot for it. My bathroom is too ugly for this candle, people.




See that brown envelope in the bottom corner? It's got a $25 Lizard Thicket gift card for one of YOU!

Not local? No worries- Lizard Thicket has a website with all the same good stuff as the store!

With Barb, the awesome owner. She's super interesting- she used to work in Silicon Valley (she threw the word "superconductors" into her presentation. As you do) and then decided she was ready for a change. She has spent the past 2 years trying to bring Lizard Thicket to Mesa and it finally happened!



Enter away below!


a Rafflecopter giveaway


Special thanks to Lizard Thicket for providing the gift card and sponsoring this post! As always, all thoughts and opinions are my own and I love the chance to support a local small business owner like Barb.

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Tuesday, May 26, 2015

Getting Older is Awesome

A self-indulgent walk down memory lane in honor of my 30th birthday with a daily picture from each year of my life and a lesson I've learned somewhere along the way.





I just really like getting older. Each year brings greater self confidence as I get more and more comfortable in my own skin. I don't mind my starter wrinkles or my random gray eyebrow hairs (none up top! ...yet). I know who I am and I like where my life is going. I can't complain.

Bring it on, 30s!

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Monday, May 25, 2015

God Gave You Wrinkles

A self-indulgent walk down memory lane in honor of my 30th birthday with a daily picture from each year of my life and a lesson I've learned somewhere along the way.


2014


God gave you wrinkles- leave them there!


(thank you Jen and Chrissy)

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Sunday, May 24, 2015

Save or Splurge

I'm leaving to the Bahamas in LESS THAN A WEEK (imagine me dancing around my kitchen right now) so I've been spending quite a lot of time swimsuit shopping both in store and online. Check out these beauties-



Love the vintage cut and floral print on each of them. I ESPECIALLY love the flattering ruching and supportive bust. There's a massive price difference between these two suits though- $144, to be exact.

Seafolly is an amazing brand and you basically can't go wrong there. But before you turn up your nose at the Wal Mart (yes, WAL MART) option, I feel like you should know that this particular swimsuit has gotten rave reviews for the past few years. I know several people personally who own and love this suit. It shows up on mom blogs as a big time winner for post-partum bodies. So IF you're in the market for a floral print vintage inspired swimsuit, just know that these are both totally valid options.


Amazon | $172
Wal Mart | $28

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There is No Shame in Selfies

A self-indulgent walk down memory lane in honor of my 30th birthday with a daily picture from each year of my life and a lesson I've learned somewhere along the way.


2013

Unless you take 28 a day, including in every bathroom mirror you find. Then there's a little shame.

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Saturday, May 23, 2015

A Brownie Can be Breakfast

A self-indulgent walk down memory lane in honor of my 30th birthday with a daily picture from each year of my life and a lesson I've learned somewhere along the way.


2012

A brownie can be breakfast. It's one of the major perks of adulthood.

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Friday, May 22, 2015

Play with Your Hair

A self-indulgent walk down memory lane in honor of my 30th birthday with a daily picture from each year of my life and a lesson I've learned somewhere along the way.


2011

It's like a constantly renewing canvas. Chop it, dye it, have fun with it. It grows back!

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Thursday, May 21, 2015

Invite People

A self-indulgent walk down memory lane in honor of my 30th birthday with a daily picture from each year of my life and a lesson I've learned somewhere along the way.

2010

 Some people are cool enough to just get invited to all the stuff. I am not one of those people. If I want to maintain or build friendships, I have to reach out and invite. We have super casual get-togethers at our house fairly regularly. I send out a general text invitation whenever I take my kids out to do something fun. Whenever I stop inviting people to do stuff our life tends to get a little quiet and lonely.

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Wednesday, May 20, 2015

Learn from Others

A self-indulgent walk down memory lane in honor of my 30th birthday with a daily picture from each year of my life and a lesson I've learned somewhere along the way. 

2009


I have this bad mental habit of thinking that I know everything (my mom can tell you I have always been this way). I know how to cook, I know how to clean, I know how to put on makeup, I know about that one restaurant, I know blah blah blah. But, the truth is that there is almost always someone out there who has a smarter, better, faster, etc. way of doing or approaching things and when I can get my know-it-all brain to shut up for 3 seconds I usually learn something valuable and useful

Acknowledging that you don't know ALL the things leads to some good learning in practical, spiritual, social and other areas of life.


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Tuesday, May 19, 2015

Learn to Cook

A self-indulgent walk down memory lane in honor of my 30th birthday with a daily picture from each year of my life and a lesson I've learned somewhere along the way.

2008

I'm not a world-class chef or anything like that but learning to cook at a basic level has been one of the best things I've done for myself as an adult. It saves us money but also I'm willing to be a lot more adventurous with my eating when I oversee what goes into my meals. I learned to like vegetables in my own kitchen.


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Monday, May 18, 2015

Buy Only Things You REALLY Love

A self-indulgent walk down memory lane in honor of my 30th birthday with a daily picture from each year of my life and a lesson I've learned somewhere along the way.

2007


A few years ago before heading out on a shopping expedition I told myself, "You are only allowed to buy something if you REALLY FREAKING LOVE IT." I had a closet full of things I felt so-so about and it was super frustrating. I made it home from that shopping trip with a single top but that top has seen a LOT of wear since then and I still love it.

It can be really easy to talk yourself into buying something because it's trendy or a color you don't own much of or because it will go really well with that one skirt you don't wear very often because you don't have a top to go with it. BUT if you don't love it...don't buy it.

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Sunday, May 17, 2015

Stop Worrying About Your Thighs

A self-indulgent walk down memory lane in honor of my 30th birthday with a daily picture from each year of my life and a lesson I've learned somewhere along the way.


2006

Stop worrying about your thighs. No one is scrutinizing them (or the rest of your body, really) the way you are.


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Saturday, May 16, 2015

Print Your Pictures

A self-indulgent walk down memory lane in honor of my 30th birthday with a daily picture from each year of my life and a lesson I've learned somewhere along the way.


2005

I have a million digital pictures on my computer but I don't look at them nearly as often as the ones I've printed and slipped into cheap albums. I like the ones with a few blank lines next to the photo sleeve so I can write a bit about the picture.

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Friday, May 15, 2015

Good Stuff



Find Out What Your Name Would be if You Were Born Today | Kayla was the 107th most popular name in 1985 when I was born. This site takes that info and extrapolates it across the decades. If I were born in 2014 I'd be named Sydney. In the 1890s I'd be Lou! Super fun!

 To the Women Who Wear Bikinis in Front of My Daughters | I was reeeal hesitant to click this one because I worried it was going to be a judgey spiel but I was pleasantly surprised. Then, the more I thought about it afterward, the more I was like, "Hey....YES."

Earth Endangered by New Strain of Fact-Resistant Humans | Hehehehe

Swearing Off the Modern Man | I LOVED this and I couldn't put my finger on exactly why until I realized that I married a man who is 6 years older and has basically zero social media presence. I married a Byron.


A Day in the Life of Pinterest“Gratitude and humility,” she reminds her terrariums. The succulents look back at her knowingly. They get it. She peruses her Motivation Wall and picks out the day’s themes: power, strength, ombré accents. I snort laughed through this one (thanks Stephanie!)

10 Words Every Girl Should Learn | The statistics cited in this article were super fascinating to me (and I've totally had to use the, "I just said that" line).


Our Mother's Day table. Those flowers are still going strong around the house and are making me vow to buy fresh flowers more often!



Have a lovely weekend!



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Eat Well but Don't be Crazy About it

A self-indulgent walk down memory lane in honor of my 30th birthday with a daily picture from each year of my life and a lesson I've learned somewhere along the way.


2004

I feel my best when I'm eating healthy- unprocessed, lots of fruits and veggies, whole grains, etc. However, in my opinion, a life without cookies is a life not worth living.

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Thursday, May 14, 2015

Do Not Wear Flip Flops in the Rain

A self-indulgent walk down memory lane in honor of my 30th birthday with a daily picture from each year of my life and a lesson I've learned somewhere along the way.


2003


Do not wear flip flops in the rain. Those suckers have NO traction. I'm lucky I don't have a broken arm.



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Wednesday, May 13, 2015

Travel

A self-indulgent walk down memory lane in honor of my 30th birthday with a daily picture from each year of my life and a lesson I've learned somewhere along the way.


2002

I am terrified of flying. I am most at peace when I do not have any flights booked for the forseeable future. However, my travel experiences have been well worth all the internal turmoil, research on plane crash statistics, and arm rest clutching.

I LOVE seeing the world (I just hate getting there).

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Tuesday, May 12, 2015

Don't Tell Other People's Stories

A self-indulgent walk down memory lane in honor of my 30th birthday with a daily picture from each year of my life and a lesson I've learned somewhere along the way.


2001


When we found out I was pregnant with twins I told a very small group of close friends. I would have waited but I needed help packing and moving and I wasn't allowed to pick up anything heavy. My news spread like wildfire and it broke my heart that I didn't get the chance to tell people my exciting news. How often do you get the chance to tell people that you're pregnant, much less with twins?? Then, when Baby A didn't make it, I had to make a very painful and awkward general announcement about it because so many people knew.

Then, with all my church stuff...I'm sure you can imagine the gossip.

Other people's stories are theirs to tell. Don't tell their bad stories OR their good stories without permission. Focus on your own stories.

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Monday, May 11, 2015

Stand Up for Stuff

A self-indulgent walk down memory lane in honor of my 30th birthday with a daily picture from each year of my life and a lesson I've learned somewhere along the way.


2000

Standing up for things I believe in has come back to bite me several times but I have never regretted doing it.
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Sunday, May 10, 2015

Try New Foods

A self-indulgent walk down memory lane in honor of my 30th birthday with a daily picture from each year of my life and a lesson I've learned somewhere along the way.


1999

I was a ridiculously picky child. It was embarrassing and limiting and I hated it. As I've gotten older I've forced myself to try new stuff and I've been shocked by how much of it I end up really liking.

Bananas are still nasty though.

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Saturday, May 9, 2015

The Great Swimsuit Hunt of 2015

This has been by far the most annoying swimsuit shopping season I've ever had. I probably just need to accept that baby #3 might have permanently altered my body and make my peace!

Here were my final contestants:



Shop Bop | The floral! That ribbing! If I ever catch this one on sale....
Target | I tried it on in the store and was really happy with the way it hid my extra belly mush and gave me some semblance of a shape. Plus I'm always a big fan of B&W prints! I still might go back and get it, actually. We'll see if I can squeeze back into ANY of my old suits before we go on our trip...
Amazon | I loved the sporty cut and was intrigued by the idea of a neoprene swimsuit. I had a gift card so I ordered it and it's a winner! The neoprene is thicker than traditional swimsuit material and really forgiving of my lumps and bumps (I also really liked the print on this one but suspected the neckline wouldn't be flattering on me). We'll see how the suit performs in the water but I can totally get behind neoprene swimsuits!

Bring it, summer.


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It's Ok to Let People Go

A self-indulgent walk down memory lane in honor of my 30th birthday with a daily picture from each year of my life and a lesson I've learned somewhere along the way.


1998


I've had friendships that were perfectly fine and functional but just got hard due to distance or mutual busy-ness or whatever. We've stopped calling each other regularly. It's ok. People grow apart. It happens to everyone.

You should let toxic people go. Let them be someone else's problem.


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Friday, May 8, 2015

Just Go to the Damn Doctor/Dermatologist/Professional Already.

A self-indulgent walk down memory lane in honor of my 30th birthday with a daily picture from each year of my life and a lesson I've learned somewhere along the way.


1997

I always drag my feet on going to see whatever professional I KNOW I need to see because maybe that thing will get better on its own?

It won't. Just call and make the freaking appointment.

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Thursday, May 7, 2015

Exercise is Worth Your Time

A self-indulgent walk down memory lane in honor of my 30th birthday with a daily picture from each year of my life and a lesson I've learned somewhere along the way.


1996

Exercise is worth your time. I hate it in the moment but it's basically 30 minutes of pain that allows me to feel amazing the rest of the day AND it has long term health benefits. As far as investments go, it's a pretty solid one.


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Wednesday, May 6, 2015

Knee Length Shorts!

I'm dipping into the waters of shorter-than-knee-length shorts (woot!) but I know like 95% of my readership is always on the lookout for longer shorts. Here are a few I've found lately while shopping around!




1. Nordstrom | Comes in 5 different colors!
2. Nordstrom | A nice darker wash and I love the thick hem.
3. Macy's | On sale! Only a few sizes left though- be speedy!

4. Land's End | LOVE the color options. Pink! Turquoise! Navy!
5. JCPenney | Can't go wrong with a little distressed detail in the summertime.
6. Gap | TONS of great options from Gap. Love this casual, light wash option but it comes in several other washes.
7. Gap | Love the slouchiness. How great would these be with a slim fit tee or a tank at the beach?
8. Macy's | Not sure if these even qualify as shorts? They're like...pedal pushers? If those are still a thing. But lots of fun color options.

9. Macy's | LEMON PRINT. Also, sale.

Where are your favorite places for knee-length shorts?

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Remember that You Don't Have All the Info

A self-indulgent walk down memory lane in honor of my 30th birthday with a daily picture from each year of my life and a lesson I've learned somewhere along the way.


1995

Whenever I get pissed at someone for doing something stupid or jerky I try to think of a legitimate and forgivable reason for why they are doing that thing. Speeding like a lunatic? Wife's in labor. Cut in front of me in line somewhere? Upset tummy and they're reeeeally worried they're not going to make it to the bathroom in time. Stole something? Fell on hard times and they just really needed it.

I get over stuff way faster that way.


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Tuesday, May 5, 2015

Swear It Out

A self-indulgent walk down memory lane in honor of my 30th birthday with a daily picture from each year of my life and a lesson I've learned somewhere along the way.


1994

I'm really not much of a swearer but occasionally the best vent for my anger is one really good curse word.

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Monday, May 4, 2015

Respect People's Time

A self-indulgent walk down memory lane in honor of my 30th birthday with a daily picture from each year of my life and a lesson I've learned somewhere along the way.

1993


I work really hard at being on time. It drives me bonkers when other people are chronically late. Be respectful of other people's time. They're busy too.

Also, don't overstay your welcome.


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Sunday, May 3, 2015

Be Careful with Your Online Presence

A self-indulgent walk down memory lane in honor of my 30th birthday with a daily picture from each year of my life and a lesson I've learned somewhere along the way.

1992


The internet is (probably) forever. When you Google my name there is nothing there that I am ashamed of.
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Saturday, May 2, 2015

Good Deodorant is Hard to Find

A self-indulgent walk down memory lane in honor of my 30th birthday with a daily picture from each year of my life and a lesson I've learned somewhere along the way.

1991


During the cooler (aka less sweaty) months I use a natural-ish stick. During the summer I use men's Degree. It has taken me a very long time to land on this particular arrangement.


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Friday, May 1, 2015

Read Books

A self-indulgent walk down memory lane in honor of my 30th birthday with a daily picture from each year of my life and a lesson I've learned somewhere along the way.

1990

Reading is good for you. It's good for your soul. It's good for your brain. It's good for your vocabulary. It keeps you sharp, you know? Read ebooks, listen to audiobooks, and please pick up an actual honest-to-goodness physical paper book sometimes too.

Also, I feel like if everyone read a book every once in a while I'd be spared the idiots on Facebook who think "firstable" and "pressidure" are words.


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