Monday, January 16, 2017

Mommy Style Monday: Winter Activities

Happy Monday! After A long weekend, I am sure glad we have today off. I even kept forgetting I didn't have to go into work today so It was a nice surprise come last night when I remembered! I just want to say a quick thank you to all of you who messaged, commented, and sent prayers for my family and in particular my brother in law. It does not go unnoticed and I am grateful for your kindness.

On another note, I am excited to show you one of our winter activities that we love for #mommystylemonday! We decided to decorate Mav's Valentines Day box. To make it less messy and stressful, I bought some stickers! He has started loving stickers and placing them on himself and other things. Target always has a great selection in the dollar section. (I am obsessed in the dollar selection!! Anyone else?!)

Here is what we needed:

A Box: They already had one pre made from target! It was plain white and already had a slit in the top. The perfect canvas for any decorations you wanted to add.
Stickers: You could get any! I kept trying to find some more boyish valentines stickers but Zack reminded me that Valentines wasn't a very manly holiday -haha- So I settled with the cute hearts!
Valentines: I picked up the valentines also in the Target dollar section for about $3. They are so cute! I love how different they are than the regular ones you pick up!
Candy: How can you do a valentines craft without candy? We ate the whole thing by the time we were done and Mav figured out how to open it himself so fast! He is a  boy after his mamas heart. I am obsessed with candy.

All of this can be found at Target!

You could decorate anything you would like with stickers to pass some time! If your toddler is anything like mine, it will keep him entertained for a little while. You can also have them use markers, paint, glitter, anything. Make it fun for them and their age! I can't wait to continue making valentines day boxes as he gets older for as long as he wants to make them with me!!

Follow along with these lovely ladies for more winter activity ideas!

Kiana at Glitter & Donuts

Madeline at CaseyLand
Shani at Sunshine & Munchkins
Britt at My Little Sunshine
Rachel at Tutus and Heels
Noelia at You Can Call Me Noe
Jessica at Mason Jars and Lemon Bars
Jen at Jam Tart Boutique
Michelle at The Mumsy Blog
Kahana at A Beautiful Life

Monica at It's All About

Have a wonderful Monday!

Wednesday, January 11, 2017

Thoughts on Motherhood

Lately, I have been really thinking about my role as a mother. Ever since I was little, I knew I wanted to be a mom. This dream today isn't always the popular choice in the world. Growing up in Utah LDS culture however, this wasn't ever weird. I was raised with the belief that being a mother is the greatest role that you will ever have. This is something that I honestly believe for myself. In our society today, many value their life style or their career over children. That is everyones right and choice. Some never had a choice and struggle with infertility. I have many friends and family members who I love very much who have struggled with this. Its heartbreaking and can be a huge trial of faith! 

"Being a mother is learning about the strengths you didn't know had, and dealing with fears you didn't know existed." Nishan Panwar

Motherhood in itself is not for the faint of heart. It can be frustrating, challenging, and tiring. To tell you a little about my story, I am a working mom. I teach 8th grade health at a title one Jr. High. At work, I feel like I am often playing a mom role to those students who don't really have that support. That can be heart wrenching as I hear about the backgrounds and struggles that my students go through. At home, my son is almost 21 months old. He is learning how to talk and can get frustrated when he doesn't know how to communicate. He hates being in his carseat during our 45 minute commute to his babysitter and my school and tends to cry a lot of the time.. He doesn't quite know when things are dangerous and is starting to tell me NO. All of these things can test my patience and frustrate me. There are times that I feel like a terrible mom. During those times I feel like I don't have enough patience or that I should have dinner done every night. I get frustrated when I more often than not have a sink full of dishes and piles of laundry to do. It all adds up and can be hard.  I have also gotten the feeling with talking to people in the past that because I work out of the home that I don't care about my son. It kills me when I hear anything like that. My son is by biggest priority. It kills me to have to leave him every day but at this point in our lives we are not able to have me stay home. And that is okay! My son is in a safe environment and is well taken care of and loved. 

I don't want you to think that being a mom is all bad or that I think that! I LOVE my son more than I could have ever imagined. He is the best part of my day! I love his sweet smile. He has such a sweet, kind spirit. He loves when I play with him without any other distractions. I would do anything for him. Though I might get frustrated, he quickly makes that frustration go away. I love that he is starting to talk and communicate with me. He always takes my hand to lead me where he wants to go. My heart still melts when he says mama. I could never imagine my life without him!

       "There is no one perfect way to be a good mother. Each situation is unique. Each mother has        different challenges, different skills and abilities, and certainly different children." M Russle Ballard

This quote is so true. We can't compare ourselves to other mothers, especially to what we see on social media. Everyone is different and there is no one way that we are ever going to be a perfect mother. Judging mother's for their decisions and parenting styles is in no way our responsibility. Mom shaming is completely uncalled for. There are so many times that I look through social media and land on a post that has so many judgmental comments. I think about how I would feel if those comments were on my posts. We should be supporting and lifting each other up! WE don't know what someone might be going through. Why make their day worse because in your opinion they aren't using the correct diapers, feeding their kids organic food, or they aren't disciplining correctly! We all have struggles and put downs just make everything worse! 

"I think we moms should pledge to never judge one another. We are all trying to desperately do this mothering thing right. " Lysa Terkeurst 

Shout out to all you moms out there working hard to take care of your kids and everything else that you do! You are doing so much better than you know! For all of you struggling with infertility, I won't pretend to know what you are going through but I love you and pray for you! For all of those that choose not to be mothers, I have nothing against you! That is your choice and I respect that choice! 

If you have made it this far, thanks so much for sticking around :) 
I'll end sharing my absolute favorite quote that always brings me peace and hope.

Have a wonderful Wednesday!

P.S. I have to shout out to my hubs who always is so supportive and willing to lighten my load. He reminds me that i'm always doing so much better than I think I am! 


Monday, January 9, 2017

The Dainty Pear

Necklaces: The Dainty Pear

Since having my son, it has been harder to wear jewelry! He loves to pull on it and thinks that it is a toy. Have any of you mamas out there have had the same experience?! However, some of my favorite pieces of jewelry now are more minimalistic and simple. These necklaces I found from The Dainty Pear are exactly what I am obsessed with now.

How cute are these necklaces?? The bar necklace has my sons initials on it. I love being able to wear it every day when I am at work and know that I am always holding him close to me. The owner, Sarah is the absolute sweetest! When I was talking with her and telling her the initials I wanted on my necklace, I had asked about another necklace that I had seen on her feed! I had told her that I wanted to purchase this other necklace from her if she had any more left. A few days later I received my package from Sarah. Instead of just the bar necklace with the initials, I also received the second necklace I had asked about with the state of Utah on it! I was so impressed by her and her kindness.

She is a mother of 4 and expecting number 5! I adore her and love following along with her journey. I love finding other moms that I can connect with and that uplift me. I have mentioned this before, but having a support system is so important with being a mother. You need those that understand, support, and give much needed advice when needed! There is such a wonderful community of moms in Utah who love and are constantly giving to others.

Sarah is also giving away a necklace of your choice from her shop to one of my readers on my Instagram HERE! I will post it tonight! Head on over to enter :) Good luck!!


Friday, January 6, 2017

Staying warm with Bear Paw!

This is totally not sponsored, however I have to share our favorite warm winter boots especially with all these crazy snow storms here in Utah! I have to tell you a little story behind this first. I have a 3 year old lab/ Chesapeake retriever mix. She is so hyper! She also loves to chew on everything or take it into the back yard if you're  not looking. I had a pair of Ugg boots sitting on the floor by my kitchen table right by the back door. I had had them since high school! I loved them!! I let Koda out in the back yard and didn't think twice. Later that day, (after it had snowed of course) I went to find the other shoe because one was missing from the kitchen. I couldn't find it anywhere! Then I saw Koda outside with non other than my other boot sopping wet and covered in snow!!! I was so sad! I didn't have the money to spend to buy another pair of Uggs but I didn't have another pair of slippers or any warm fuzzy shoes! Everyone needs a pair! I started doing some research into some other pairs. I remembered I had bought Mav some Bear Paw boots that I had found for $20! I searched around and found some on Amazon for only $50 bucks! Half the price of the Uggs I was looking at. I was so excited and ordered them right away on Amazon prime (free shipping... no brainer!) I love the shorter bootie. Now Mav and I get to match! And the fact that it is 0 degrees today makes me even more happy that I bought them!

On another note, I am so excited that it is Friday! Zack and I are finally going to go out for our anniversary! Is there any food places in Salt Lake or Utah County that you would recommend for dinner? I have no idea where to go!!!

Have a wonderful Friday!

Wednesday, January 4, 2017

The Posh Plum + Giveaway!

Mavs Hat: The Posh Plum  Mavs Shoes: Freshly Picked
Photos: LC Photo

Don't you love little baby and toddler accessories? My favorite personally is hats and shoes! Im showing you some of my favorite local shops that we will always turn to!

First off, Freshly picked has been our go to shoe for Mavryk since he was little. He loves them and is always pulling them off his shelf to wear! They have been perfect for when he learned how to walk. I also love that they are so light and not bulky. He is able to walk and run no problem without me worrying about tripping on his shoes. Out of all the ones I have bought him, they are our favorites! Our favorite colors for little boys are the Utah Collection. The leather they use is easily cleaned and wears really well! They even look better once they are worn for awhile. I also love that I can save them for my next littles! That is well worth the money in my opinion.

Second, how cute is this little hat?! Living in Utah with littles, you need good warm hats in the winter! I about died when I found The Posh Plum on Etsy. Not only is their owner Bridgett the sweetest, she is also a Utah local! I love supporting my local businesses! Mav wears this hat every time we go out side. Its so soft and warm! I also love that it covers his little ears. Its a life saver during these bitter cold months and makes dressing warm more fun! Trust me when I say that you need one. Right now some of her hats are even discounted to $20! You need to run on over. To make it more fun, i'm excited to tell you that I am hosting a giveaway for a $20 shop credit to The Posh Plum on my Instagram!! My handle is @kahanaora!

Here are some of our favorites:

Good Luck! 

Monday, January 2, 2017

Four years..

Photos: Jordan P Photography (she is amazing!!)

Four years.. time goes by so fast! I am sitting here in disbelief that it has already been that long. Just yesterday, we had celebrated the new year of 2013. January 2nd quickly came and I remember driving that morning to the Salt Lake Temple. I don't think that morning it had really hit me that we were getting married! Walking into the temple, it was probably the coldest day of the year. It was FREEZING! I don't think it was over 20 degrees that whole day. After getting ready for the sealing, Zack and I were able to spend about 30 minutes together in the celestial room of the temple waiting for all of our guests to be seated. That was such a peaceful time were we were able to talk about literally everything. As we were walking into the sealing room, it was overflowing with loved ones and friends. I was overwhelmed with the love that I felt from not only everyone in the room, but my heavenly father. I had never felt so much at peace than I felt that day.

Our sealer did an amazing job. He said many things that to this day I will never forget. Zack's biological mom had passed away when he was 13 years old. He had said that she was there and so happy about our decision. He also had told us that all of our children were there and celebrating. I remember bursting into tears! (It was a good thing I had eye lash extensions!!) That day was one that I will never forget. We had photos outside of the temple with all of our friends and family that had come to congratulate us. Did I mention it was freezing?! I still will hold every image so dear to my heart for the rest of my life. Especially those of our families. We lost Zack's step mom Lisa to cancer about two years ago. I will always have these photos to tell my children about the amazing nana's that they have in heaven watching over them.

Our reception was everything that I had ever dreamed. We had it at Wheeler Farm! I wanted lights every where and both our families made it happen! They even figured out a way to drape the fabric over the whole reception. It was gorgeous! We had so many different kinds of soups which was perfect for such a cold day. We even had our favorite bread sticks from Little Ceasars! For desert we had all different types of cakes people could eat. We had so many people we love come and support us! I love being able to remember this day through all of our amazing photos Jordan took.

Thanks for stopping by and walking down memory lane with me!! 
Happy New Year and have a fabulous week!

Friday, December 23, 2016

Christmas PJ's!

Mavs PJ's: Gap My Pj's: Top (Gap-Sold out), Bottoms
We are so late on this post, however we are so excited to share with you our favorite tradition, Christmas PJ's! Does anyone else do this? I remember every year at my grandmas opening up our PJ's Christmas eve, watching a movie, and eating pizza. So many fond memories!! We got ours at Gap this year! They had so many cute options! I got Mav a few different pairs and my husband Zack some that are wrapped up under the tree for Christmas eve! 

Mav has been so much fun this year. He is beginning to understand and is able to communicate! I can't wait to keep creating traditions for my little family as we go through the holidays. I love seeing the light in his little eyes as he experiences everything to do with the holidays! 

Have a Merry Christmas!! 


© A Beautiful Life
Maira Gall