h-a-l-l-o-w-e-e-n....throwback thursday, vol. 8

i've never been much on halloween. even as a kid, i'd dress up and sure it was fun...but i guess i never got too excited about it like most kids.  my holidays have always been thanksgiving and christmas.

my coworkers laughed when i told them we'd probably stay home, turn the lights off, order take out, and watch a scary movie.  they are convinced my outlook will change once we have a little one... but i don't think it will. sure if she wants to go trick-or-treeting, we'll take her...but i hope she doesn't put a tremendous focus on halloween either. dressing up is fun...but holidays are meant to be about family and togetherness and represent something.  i hope i can pass that on to her ♥

but, i will say... i do like carving pumpkins and candy, HA!

here is a glimpse of some halloweens past...

2008, our first pumpkin we carved together ♥

Princess Lea-Lilly ♥ 2008

2008, carving our pumpkin

2007, me & my Mel ♥

2011 ♥



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dressing the bump...

from a first time mom, who started showing pretty early on... because as my husband says, where else did the baby have to go but out?!...i've enjoyed the fun of the different pregnancy styles and experimenting with incorporating my maternity and non-maternity clothes!

i really have loved that i started showing a bit early! i started showing a little bump around 16weeks, and then really popped around 20weeks.  to me it means i've gotten to enjoy all aspects of pregnancy for longer and the whole looking fat not pregnant phase was pretty short for me.  it also means our sweet baby girl is growing healthy and strong and really, who can't adore that?! sure, i miss my flat tummy days, and have a freak out moment every once in awhile when i have a hard time buttoning my non-maternity pants, but my husband likes teasing me, asking me what size those non maternity pants are & quickly reminds me that i'm pretty darn lucky to be 6 1/2 months pregnant and still wearing my size 0 pants... even if some days they are hard to button and require a belly band!  i get a lot of comments on HOW i still dress "normal" even though i'm pregnant...

so some things i've learned about dressing the bump so far:

use your resources!! graciously accept hand-me-downs! i've been so blessed by a cousin who just had a baby a few months ago and a friend who gave me BOXES of maternity clothes. i've picked up like one pair of pants and a couple of t-shirts, but really that's all the money i've spent on maternity clothes!
mix and match! i promise there are things in your everyday closet that will work for maternity as well! this will also expand your wardrobe choices.
maternity clothes are typically more flattering! i wear a combo of maternity/non-maternity clothes often, but there are some of the non-maternity clothes i've learned to stay away from.  empire waste shirts/dresses are a killer to the figure! they are basically a throwback to the days pregnant women wore tents! sure, at first you might think they help camouflage the bump, but if you have a short torso like me... well, you will just feel wide and dumpy!
hair tie vs. belly band... i have a few belly bands i've put to use and i love them! i do prefer the cotton ones vs the spandex material ones.  i have both and the spandex material ones seem to crawl (but don't get me wrong... i use them still, ha!). hair tie... i haven't used that method much. i honestly find the bands so much more comfortable and easy to use! plus they help make shirts longer too!
leggings! never under estimate the power of leggings, ha! they help turn your cute short summer dresses into a cute outfit with a cardigan! i've also picked up a few pairs of the patterned/textured tights which i also love. & another bonus... they don't have to be maternity!!... just fold those puppies down under the belly!

really, i've had a lot of fun pair and mix and matching!! hopefully it will stay this fun as i get larger ;)

non-maternity sweater dress, paired with textured tights, boot socks, a fun braided belt, and boots!

non-maternity flowy shirt, with non maternity corduroy pants

maternity t-shirt, paired with non-maternity jacket & jeans, boots and a fun scarf

maternity work pants paired with non-maternity shirt and cardigan with a
fun belt and scarf!

maternity t-shirt with a non-maternity plaid long sleeve button up
*i'm a fan of pairing maternity t's with non-maternity stuff!

all non maternity! ... except the black belly band you see peeking out

maternity top with a non maternity cardigan and belt!

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just when you think you know...

one thing i've learned in life: just when you think you understand love or know what it is... it comes right up and surprises you.  for me, it's always been in a good way (well, at least the past 5 years or so). 

when i think back on what i knew of love or thought i knew of love before Rob... it's almost laughable! i believe our culture does a really bad job for young girls/women and their expectations of love.  its either storybook fairy tales or nothing.  well, i'm here to tell you, you can have that fairy tale! sure, you may not be wearing a princess ball gown everyday. you probably aren't going to have little mice talking to you and making dresses for you. and some days you might not even like one another... BUT you can always be one another's biggest fans and ALWAYS be in love.  it's truly about perspective!

as i walked into our cozy home last night, as i got home from work, to our fireplace, candles, a clean/organized home (my amazing hubby is also nesting!!! & i love it!), & a prime rib dinner waiting on me... i couldn't help but think, yep. this is it. my life. & it's pretty stinking amazing! granted, not all of our evenings look like this... some are made up of frozen pizza, football/baseball on tv... but i love those evenings too!! & if that wasn't enough, i love how i can clearly see Rob's love for our baby girl growing on a daily basis! it truly melts my heart! ♥

i've had my share of heartbreak/heartache over the years looking for my mr. right. but once i found him that didn't matter! it's as if all of that was another lifetime ago... so far in my past that i really have to dig through the cobwebs to find those memories of hurt. i'm so thankful for the road God took us both down to get us to where we are, and to show me what true love is! so very thankful for this beautiful love i've been so undeservingly blessed with!

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showered with love ♥

we kicked off 25weeks with a wonderful babyshower, hosted by our sweet sister-in-law Leah and Rob's fabulous mom Kathy!

we were so fortunate to be surrounded by many family members and tons of our friends. it was a bit overwhelming for us to see ALL our friends that we've made in the year and a half we've been here. our hearts were definitely full!

we got so many neat and amazing gifts for our baby girl! we, along with her, are SO spoiled :)

here are some pictures from our day yesterday:

our little gal will be dressing like a diva ♥

party favors

party favors

friends and family, praying over us and our girl

the boys played horse shoes, the girls took pictures ♥

my mom and daddy!

my moms ♥

it was a wonderful, special time! again... we are too blessed for words! ♥

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friday letters, vol.3

dear precious girl,
how treasured you are! 
your daddy and i are planning for you
and are SO excited for you to be here!
time seems to be flying & we cannot wait to meet
 you and hold you in our arms.  you continue to show your
spunk and feistiness with how active you are! 
mommy sure appreciates you letting her sleep though; what 
a good girl you are already!!
we are SO close to finalizing our name choice for you. 
i really think it will fit you well! 
keep up the little love kicks, sweetie!
mommy loves them... almost as 
much as she loves YOU! 


a special throwback; throwback thursday, vol.7

as promised a week or so ago... a special throwback. as our chapter in California has officially come to a close, I've been meaning to blog about it a bit. So this throwback isn't going to have pictures... just my thoughts.

California represents to me a time of personal growth and a time that God took me from where I was and put me where I (& He) wanted to be.

I was a little sad as Jack and Kathy sold their home and are using their other home there as a rental...both of which hold meaning to me; i actually lived in them both! Their Fullerton home was the first home that the boys lived in... Rob was just a tiny baby when they moved into their home in Anaheim, so really that is the only home he remembers living in growing up.

The Anaheim home is where I met Rob for the first time. It's where his childhood memories took place. It's where we spent a lot of time with our friends, as friends. It's where I was officially invited over as his "girlfriend" for dinner with his parents. It's where we spent many a date night, hanging out watching movies together. It's where we celebrated our wedding vows, in the back yard. And It's where Jack and Kathy graciously let us live with them for a few months, saving all of our income to move to CO. If the walls of that house could talk... it would speak of love and laughter, family and treasured moments, family prayer; lots of pinochle, lots of games, wild turkey shots, tears and growth.

The Fullerton house... that's where Rob and his Grandpa Len taught me to play pinochle at a family function, before we were us.  It's where I sat on the couch as the sweet family I held so dear went through the unimaginable, the loss of a family member. It's where we celebrated Kolb family Christmases.  And it's where Grandma Nina and I became roommates... I cherished every moment of that year I lived with her! It's where we spent many a days in the pool or many an evening sitting with our feet in the water, talking, drinking a glass of wine and laughing about men - comparing Grandpa Len and Rob ;) ... cherished memories!!!

Now that the chapter is closed on California, I can only reflect on what that chapter brought me: strength, a closer relationship with God, my college degree, love, family, the accomplishment of my goal of dog rescue, many true-treasured friends, and mostly... Rob! ♥  Sure there were nights of craziness, my wild side and my going out days...but honestly, those aren't what I treasure or remember.  It's the evenings by the outdoor fireplace with Rob, or carving pumpkins with him in the fall, nights with our friends playing games, or romantic sunsets on the beach with my man.

I find myself thankful for those times, but also anticipating even more better times here in Colorado! We have loved every second of our time here over the past year and a half! Now that more family has moved here and our family is growing... well, I just can't fathom the memories that are to be made! ♥

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24 weeks ❤️

Here we are! Sailing into week 25! I woke up on Saturday, my 24w mark, energized and feeling more like my old self! It was quite amazing!!! We then spent most of the weekend with family from out of state and socializing, which I love, but left me absolutely exhausted!!! whew! Yesterday this statement came out of my mouth, "I Don't think I've ever been so tired in my life!!" And I meant it. Not even the first trimester. I'm tired.

But all in all, this past week has been a good one! I keep checking for linea nigra or stretch marks... nothing yet! My belly button hasn't flattened out yet either, which is pretty amazing considering the bump I have these days! Baby girl stays active! She falls asleep around the time I do and wakes up and starts wiggling between 8-9am. Man, if I could only keep her on this schedule ;) I woke up in the middle of the night the other night and as soon as I spoke, I must of startled her. It was almost like she jumped inside me!... then with a kick of, "hello... it's the middle of the night, we are suppose to be sleeping!".

She has her first baby shower this weekend! We are so excited to spend time with family and all of our friends! We are going co-ed so that Rob and his friends along with my dad, Jack, and Grandpa T can all join in on the fun too :)

We are getting closer and closer to deciding on a name! I can't wait to share it!!! I think I'll do a fun name art to reveal/share her name.  We've gotten it basically narrowed down to two names... but no sharing until we figure out for sure which one! ♥ I'd say its about 80-20, if not 90-10! So close! But THEN we have to pick out a middle name... oh goodness! HA!

Here are a few pictures from the weekend....


nesting begins...

when we found out we were expecting, i began looking for nursery ideas on pinterest! i immediately fell in love with this nursery:

when we found out little sweetT was a baby girl... well, i decided to move in a different direction, but just couldn't let go of that stinkin' adorable giraffe print!!! so, as i'm sure every other mom does... you go to the link and boom! etsy... $150!! plus, the color scheme just wasn't what i wanted. you see, i'm not much of a pinky/girlie person and alot of the nursery bedding looks like pink craziness to me! when rob found our baby's brown bedding WITH flowers i was over the moon! girly bedding that doesn't have to be pink?! is that possible? haha.  we decided to add purple as the accent color... and we found the cutest little blankets that were purple WITH giraffes! so, as you can see this slowly but surely started coming together in my mind... i COULD have a giraffe baby nursery and it still be girly! then came the day that i found out that the same person on etsy that makes the giraffe canvas that i was coveting, also supplies templates for people to make their own! so i took it and adapted it... and made one for myself (or for baby girl)! the original was done with painting, but i wanted to incorporate a few different textures/patterns that i didn't think i could pull of with painting...so fabric it was!

on saturday i headed out to our local craft stores for supplies and fabric...

• canvas, mod podge, and supplies from Michaels... $7! 
• fabric from hancock fabrics ( i just got 1/4 yard of each color)... $9!
• template from ThePaperNut ... $6!
• 3 hours of time, cutting, pinning, and gluing!

 other supplies i found useful: sharp fabric scissors, straight pins, and sponge applicators

& that's it!

i camped out on our basement table for a few hours and went to work! i chose a large canvas (24x30), so i had to blow the template giraffes up to my desired size! & then went to cutting!

here are a few pictures of the process:

picking out fabric at the fabric store... so many choices!

turned our guest bedroom/soon to be nursery into craft storage... and baby storage! ...
laying out the colors trying to decide the order

after i cut out the template giraffes... i pinned them to the back of the fabric

i chose to pin and cut... much like you would a clothes pattern

again... laying out the arangement, i chose to go portrait instead of landscape shown in this
picture... the fun part of choosing a huge canvas!

painting on the moge-podge

right after i was finished... the purples dried a bit lighter

& the finished product....

... next on my agenda are tissue puffs for above our rocker and maybe some other fun giraffe art...i do have a lot of scrap fabric left over! there has to be something fun i could make with it ;)
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let's get real mondays... vol. 1

lately i've been gently reminded by my ever loving heavenly father, to not let statistics define me or my marriage.  i can always tell when it's the loving nudge of my master's hand when i'm reminded of his quiet whisper in a few different places... in other words... He's hitting me up side the head with it, in his own loving way.

something i haven't talked about on this blog, because well, it's my past. my past that i've been forgiven for. it's my baggage. my baggage that my loving amazing husband chose to pick up and carry along with me... my first marriage. yep. that's right. the "d" word... divorce.  i was young. i was immature. choices were made that i wouldn't make today...but that being said, it led me to where i am now, and to a marriage that absolutely glorifies christ and is just down right amazing!

i'm sure you've all seen the statistics surround second marriages... let's just say they aren't that great. these are statistics, that ever since rob and i exchanged vows have haunted me a little. granted, we are breaking them. we are extremely happily and wonderfully married & i love proving people wrong! but i've learned in my 30 years of my Christian walk that when God is hitting me in the head with something, I need to stop and pay attention. often times he's guiding me away from something or sometimes it's merely preparation. either way, i'm taking notice. i've stopped. i'm still. & i'm holding on that he is the great I Am. 

one the last quiet little whispers, my light bulb moment that God was trying to get my attention, was the message at church yesterday... 

a few points I took away: 

•If you do marriage gods way, you have the success rate of 100%

•God made marriage and he doesn't  make things to fail. 

•Marriage exists because we cannot reach our potential on our own, God said it is not good for man to be alone.

The message was centered around Ephesians 5. If you've read any of my other entries in marriage, you know I'm one of the few people that has never had issues with this scripture. I saw it laid out in front of me all through my childhood. It is how God intended marriage. 

A point I found necessary and absolutely filled with truth regarding the roles that have been laid out for is in this scripture:

•These roles disable our sinful natures & keep them from destroying our marriages.
Women: prideful independence 
Men: detachment 

I strive to live out the roles given to me by God in Ephesians 5, as I know Rob does as well. It's tough. Being a godly spouse is a full time job, but it's the most rewarding one there is!! I pray that God continues to help us fight the odds and live out a strong sacrificial marriage for him! Because through him and because of him we have 100% chance of a successful marriage!!! ❤️

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friday letters, vol. 2 & week 23+ update

sheesh, i've been slacking. i'm almost 24 weeks and posting week 23, HA & no bump pictures were even taken this week! life has been blissfully busy this week!

grandma & grandpa T are in town for a few weeks.  they drove out from CA and will stay until my baby shower the end of the month.  it is so fun to have them here! so, we spent most of the weekend hanging out with them :)  saturday morning, i had the opportunity to play model. over a month ago i had a lady walk up to me in target and tell me she wanted to use me in her portfolio. after a few phone calls, i decided to give it a go. it was a fun morning of getting pampered! sunday we hung out with the family some more and then i headed to, yet, another baby shower.  so fun to have friends expecting the same time as i am! the rest of our week has been fun filled with having people over to dinner and going over to friends house for dinner.  we were able to spend some good quality time with our dear Cartons last night... the boys let Autumn and I whoop up on them in euchre.

the belly continues to grow and has recently in the last couple of days become a food catcher.... i've never been one to drop food or drip it on myself when i eat, but apparently that's a new thing?! haha. we got nothing but praises and good reports from our doctor on monday. baby girl is growing healthy and strong! i experienced a first "hm, i can't do that anymore..." a couple days ago.  i was putting laundry away and threw my pants up on the top shelf of the closet... well, attempted to throw them up there (my arms stretching above my head AND i have to jump to usually get them up there...). it did not work. it did however result in me running and crawling on the bed screaming in pain! apparently my muscles are stretching so much that any extra stretch was NOT ok... it was still sore yesterday... and guess where baby girl insisted on kicking me all day... yep. you guessed it ;)

dear sweet girl,
with each day that passes i get more and more excited to meet you!
but yet at the same time, i know i'm going to miss your little love kicks 
to me all day long. and speaking of!...
your kicks get stronger and cuter each and every day!
last night at dinner you were kicking me
so hard it was unreal! you are so strong, little one! mommy's
doctor was laughing at you this week, as she
was trying to listen to your heartbeat... you were
so active, all she could hear for awhile were your squirms in 
mommy's tummy.  she warned us that you are super feisty.
we wouldn't expect anything less... already your mommy's girl!
we love you beyond words, sweet girl!
♥, your mommy

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