Entries Tagged as 'life happens'

full term!

Posted on: Monday, July 14, 2014

Full Term! | Ann-Marie Loves

Being full-term means:

My wedding ring no longer fits my finger (which is good for my skin since I’ve recently developed an allergy to it! GAH.)

Trying to finish up last minute projects as fast as possible.

I’m never too far from my bottle of Tums. Heartburn continues to be the one constant throughout my whole pregnancy. (Maybe it’s because she has a full head of hair?)

Getting up in the middle of the night for the umpteenth bathroom trip and realizing “OMG, I’m going to be awake at this hour every night!

Savoring these last few weeks of being pregnant. Despite minor discomforts along the way, I have LOVED this experience.

Riding waves of being super tired and waves of being super energized. I never know what each day (or rather, each hour!) will bring.

I am much smaller and more able-bodied than I thought I would be at this point (which is not to say that I’m by ANY MEANS small or super able-bodied in comparison to others; just different than I imagined).

Visiting the doctor on a weekly basis.

My belly button is officially inside out.

Being on high alert for any signs of impending labor (“Is that a contraction? Is THAT a contraction?”). So far, no real signs.

Writing the shortest birth plan of all time:

  1. Walk into hospital pregnant.
  2. Walk out of hospital with a healthy baby. All the rest will be figured out when I get there!

The shape of my bump sadly does not allow me to use it as a table for food and drinks. The drop-off is far too steep.

Drinking lots and lots of water, from the time I get up to the time I go to bed.

Trying not to dwell on the logistics of actually popping this kid out. Oh lordy.

Wondering when (if?) the waddling stage will begin.

My hands fall asleep ALL. THE. TIME. I get that weird prickling sensation not just when I’m sleeping (although that’s the most common time), but also when I’m in the middle of a hand-intensive task. Um, hi, I was still using you?

Getting more and more excited everyday! All these months of planning, dreaming, shopping, decorating, worrying, and reveling are about to pay off in a BIG way.

Hoping for a happy, healthy baby above all else.

I have no idea what I’m doing. But I’m doing it.

that nesting instinct, though.

Posted on: Thursday, July 10, 2014

Nesting | Ann-Marie Loves

These last few weeks definitely feel like crunch time as I try to wrap up work projects, make sure we have everything for the baby’s arrival, and most excitingly, deep clean this whole house into oblivion. The nesting instinct is NO JOKE, you guys. I wish I could bottle it up and save it for a rainy day…it’s the stuff of dreams.

Yesterday I dedicated most of the day to reorganizing the linen closet (finally found a place to store extra diapers!), the bathroom cupboards, and a few drawers in the office. I like my days to feel busy and productive, because like I mentioned before, our bedroom gets insanely hot at night and when it’s insanely hot, I turn into a bit of an insomniac. Ay papi. But don’t worry…I’m really not working THAT hard. I stop every so often to chug a glass of water, rest my super-puffy feet, and revel in baby hiccups (because my goodness if that isn’t the cutest experience of my life).

As I check off more and more items from our giant to-do list each day, the realization that a tiny little gal will be coming to live with us in a matter of weeks is blowing my mind.

P.S. Tomorrow is the last day to take advantage of my 37% off sale on e-courses and printables using the discount code: THIRTYSEVEN :)

what i’m reading | baby edition.

Posted on: Tuesday, July 8, 2014

What I'm Reading | Baby Edition | Ann-Marie Loves

Since finding out I was pregnant, I’ve amassed quite the collection of baby-related books. I will be completely honest and tell you that I jump around from book to book, never really completing any of them (where did this ADD come from??), but all of them have been super useful and inspiring in one way or another. Here’s the stack that I keep on my nightstand:

Great with Child. After seeing a few recommendations for this book around the interwebs, I figured I would check it out for myself. Good move on my part. It is SUCH a great book, written in the style of letters from a seasoned mom to a new mom.

Mom, Inc. I actually bought this book about a year ago, long before I knew that I would be having a baby anytime soon. I love anything pertaining to small business and working from home, so I figured it would be a useful read. It was then and it is now!

On Becoming Baby Wise. This book was recommended to me by a few different people and despite it’s controversial nature, I like having these tips and tools in my back pocket should I decide that sleep-training is something I want to pursue.

What to Expect When You’re Expecting. I mean, what pregnant woman hasn’t paged through this book? To be honest, I only refer to it on occasion when I remember that I own it (the internet is just so much faster), but it’s definitely a great resource to have on hand.

The Honest Life. Okay, so maybe this book isn’t 100% baby-specific, but Jessica Alba touches on several different child-rearing topics that are so fascinating, plus the photos are beautiful. I love books that I can pick up and jump in anywhere.

A Child Is Born. My mom bought this book for me and it’s chock-full of amazing photos of fetuses at various stages of development. Some of the birth photos are a tad bit graphic (okay, a LOT graphic), but the good news is, you can always turn to the next page!

Bloom. My friend lent me this book quite some time ago, but I didn’t actually begin reading it until I knew I was pregnant. The story is incredibly sweet and touching. I highly recommend it. (And no, it didn’t make me worry any more than I already would have about Down’s Syndrome.)

The Glow. Because decorating a nursery is THE MOST FUN EVER and because I frequent the blog version of this book on a regular basis, it was a no-brainer that it would eventually end up in my cart. I love going through the pages when I need a burst of decorating inspiration. Plus, the pink spine looks pretty killer on a shelf. Just saying ;)

as of late | july edition.

Posted on: Monday, July 7, 2014

As of Late | July Edition | Ann-Marie Loves

Essentials for this past weekend.

Getting: overly excited about the holiday season! I’m already dreaming of all the crafts I want to make, all the photos I want to take, and all the new traditions I want to start with my little family! I feel a holiday e-course coming on…

Realizing: that my “As of Late” post for August will probably be VERY different.

Spending: way too much time on the phone with my health insurance company. A word of advice: understand your out-of-pocket costs BEFORE you get pregnant. #holystickershock

Selling: a pair of unworn clogs that are sadly too small for my jumbo preggo feet over here.

Reading: The Honest Life by Jessica Alba. My friend Jaymee gave it to me as a baby shower gift and I am loving every minute of it! (P.S. I totally need to write a post about unexpected baby shower gifts that turned out to be my faves.)

Reorganizing: every closet, every cabinet, every drawer in this house. So dang inspired by Joy’s and Emily’s recent closet makeovers!

Despising: how dirty my feet get after a day of wearing sandals. I don’t know why it bothers me so much, but ugh. CAN’T HANDLE.

Loving: Ritz crackers with banana slices + a (generous) handful of chocolate chips, microwaved for 22 seconds (I always choose random numbers when miking). Maybe I love it a little too much.

Jumping: for joy over the crazy discount I just got on an Ergo baby carrier! After my sister-in-law told me about the deal, I had that thing in my cart and en route to my house in no time at all! (And dare I say, we’re now officially ready for the baby to arrive…?)

Staying: very busy with work and preparing for baby and keeping this house as clean + organized as possible. I love how good it feels to climb into bed after having a productive day!

Using: not one, not two, but THREE fans in our bedroom when we go to sleep at night. It’s like white noise / wind tunnel heaven in there.

Taking: more hot weather-induced naps than usual, in the aforementioned white noise / wind tunnel heaven ;)

Deciding: that being 37 weeks pregnant (full-term!) calls for a discount code celebration! Save 37% off all printables and e-courses in my shop from now until Friday 7/11 using the code THIRTYSEVEN.

workspace wednesday | free project list printable.

Posted on: Wednesday, July 2, 2014

Free Project List Printable | Designed by Ann-Marie Loves

At any given point in time, I have an ongoing list of a million and one projects that I want to accomplish, like, yesterday. While some of them can be achieved in a single step, others take several steps to finish. So instead of writing “decorate the nursery” on my to-do list day after day, knowing full-well that it will never to be crossed off, I’ve created a free printable that turns big projects into bite-size tasks.

 Free Project List Printable | Designed by Ann-Marie Loves

CLICK HERE TO DOWNLOAD

Free Project List Printable | Designed by Ann-Marie Loves

P.S. I talk at greater length about the idea of breaking down projects into manageable chunks and include a more comprehensive list printable in my e-course “Make It Happen!”

settling in + staying put.

Posted on: Monday, June 30, 2014

Ann-Marie + John Espinoza | Photo by Sorella Muse

Photo by Sorella Muse

After a crazy month of being gone every single weekend, John and I have created a self-imposed rule that we are going to stay as local as possible until this baby of ours decides to make an appearance. We have grand plans of:

- Sleeping!

- Learning how to install the car seat properly.

- Marathoning Veep.

- Cleaning out the garage. And the closets. And the cabinets. And everywhere else in our house.

- Picking up the remaining items on our list (namely the Ergo!).

- Marveling at how ridiculously dark my hair is and how unbelievably swollen my feet have become! (What is happening?!)

- Feeling the baby kick (I know I’m going to miss this so much!).

- Rereading all of our notes from the baby classes we recently took.

- Sleeping some more.

- Trying to convince ourselves that we are ready to take care of a tiny human.

- Decorating + redecorating the nursery AT LEAST five more times.

- Packing our hospital bag (any essentials I need to bring, moms?).

- Taking the last few weekly bump shots.

- Writing more letters to our daughter.

- Enjoying every minute of time as a twosome. After ten years together, we are so ready to bring another person into the mix!

- Did I mention we will be sleeping?

desert bunny baby shower | part one.

Posted on: Monday, June 23, 2014

Desert Bunny Baby Shower | Ann-Marie Loves

Invitation designed by JayAdores

Despite the fact that my heartburn has reached a whole new level of crazy and my feet + ankles (okay, kankles) have grown about four sizes overnight, I feel completely overwhelmed with love and gratitude for all of my closest friends and family members. This past weekend marked my second baby shower and much like the last, it’s hard for me to articulate just how special it is to be surrounded by loved ones who already have such a vested interest in Baby Espinoza without ever having met her…! I received some incredible gifts, but truly (and as cliche as it sounds), the best gift of all was the presence of so many of my favorite people packed into my parents’ backyard on a warm Sunday afternoon. Having a baby really is the best. Heartburn, fat feet, and all.

P.S. More photos to come!

my pre-mom style.

Posted on: Tuesday, June 17, 2014

Mom Style | Ann-Marie Loves

As I get closer and closer to becoming a real live mom, I’ve noticed my style morphing ever so slightly. While I’m certainly not at the point of mom jeans just yet, I have been favoring comfort and practicality over anything too fussy or time-consuming these days. But at the same time, I’m not quite ready to forgo my pre-baby style entirely! Last week I had bangs chopped for the first time in a few years and it makes me feel like a brand new person. The rest of my hair is still long enough to throw in a top knot because really, who wants to spend extra time blow-drying their hair? Not this gal.

Mom Style | Ann-Marie Loves

I’ve also been giving into maternity clothes more and more, because frankly, I am running out of wardrobe options and I do need to leave the house and interact with society every once in awhile. Plus, maternity clothes are the comfiest things EVER. We’re talking stretch, stretch, and more stretch…what’s not to love about that? I’ve been wearing this pink + white super soft nightgown to bed and thanks to it’s nursing-friendly straps, it will continue to get plenty of mileage long after the baby arrives. I’m also loving my black + white striped dress that I plan to wear to my second shower. But! I still like to spice things up with regular clothes too! For example, this white denim vest from Target is in heavy rotation since it doesn’t require any buttoning or zipping and hides…umm…”pregnancy softness?” (read: BACK FAT), like a champ.

Mom Style | Ann-Marie Loves

And as for footwear, I am ALL about the Birks these days. They are quite possibly the ugliest shoes I have ever owned and definitely the biggest size I have ever worn (thanks to my perma-swollen feet), but my goodness, they are so comfortable and require no bending down to put them on. Now that’s a win if ever I’ve heard of one!

baby showers are the best.

Posted on: Monday, June 16, 2014

Baby Shower No. One | Ann-Marie Espinoza

How gorgeous is the Espinoza gene pool?? Holy moly, I chose well! ;)

Bridal showers are fantastic. They are the perfect excuse to wear a tight white dress, indulge in cocktails with your best friends, and squeal over latte bowls, lingerie, and linens that help to get married life off on the right foot.

But then there are baby showers.

I never realized just how truly special these kinds of get-togethers are until I had my first one this past Saturday. Since my sister-in-law and I are both expecting girls this year, our amazing family threw us a beautiful backyard double shower to celebrate the forthcoming members to the Espinoza clan. I love that baby showers are not just about the moms-to-be, but more importantly, they’re about the new lives that will be here before we know it.

As John and I unpacked our car full of baby gifts last night, we couldn’t help but revel in just how lucky our daughter is to have such an incredible group of people who already love her so much. I often look back on our engagement and our wedding and think about how I thought things couldn’t possibly get anymore fulfilling than they were in that moment. Ha! I was so naive. I am here to report that having a baby takes the concept of fulfillment to a whole new level.

So what if my body’s nowhere near as fit as it once was or I can’t enjoy a glass (or three) of wine just yet? Everyday of pregnancy is a welcome reminder that there are much more important things in life to celebrate :)

letters to baby.

Posted on: Thursday, June 5, 2014

Letters to Baby | Ann-Marie Loves

I’ve been given a lot of advice from seasoned moms over the past several months in regards to caring for a newborn and I genuinely appreciate it (even if I know I will do the exact opposite).

I’ve received advice on how to get through labor and delivery. I’ve heard success stories about sleep training and getting babies on a reliable schedule. I’ve listened to moms wax poetic about savoring each and every moment because it all goes by so fast. But the one piece of advice that seems to ring true across the board is that I should not expect to do anything other than focus all my time and attention on my tiny little human for the first several weeks. And you know what? I’m okay with that.

Letters to Baby | Ann-Marie Loves

So in an effort to make documenting my daughter’s life as seamless and easy as possible, I decided to forgo the traditional baby book and invest in a blank journal instead. To avoid worrying about ruining a beautiful baby book with sloppy handwriting or forgetting to fill in all the pages, I have designated this book as an informal landing spot for all of John’s and my thoughts, feelings, and memories as we enter parenthood and get to know our daughter.

Letters to Baby | Ann-Marie Loves

We made our first entries on Monday after my 32 week ultrasound + appointment and it makes me so happy to see the pages slowly filling. When I read John’s first entry, I couldn’t decide if I wanted to crack up or cry tears of joy (this is not an unusual predicament these days). His writing style is equal parts humor and heart, and I am thrilled that he wants to contribute his thoughts to this book just as much as I do.

We’ve tossed around the idea of keeping this journal going up until she is 18 and then giving it to her as a high school graduation gift, but I’m not sure I can hold out that long! (I mean, I could barely wait a few weeks to spill these beans.) Only time will tell…

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