Friday, August 29, 2014

End of Summer Walks

This has been my first real summer in three years! Alaskan summers are just not "summer" when you've lived in Guam and California for so long (oh yeah, Las Vegas too...ugh, that was awful) I've really enjoyed the heat and even the humidity. What I'm really excited for is autumn. I haven't had a real autumn since I moved away from New York eleven years ago. If you don't know what an upstate New York autumn looks like you are missing out, I had our wedding in autumn because it's so beautiful.
I've spent a lot of time on my resume and looking around at universities. I'm going to apply in October and hopefully I can start the spring semester this January. I can't believe my time in the army is almost over! It the home stretch now. Thank goodness... You guys, seriously, it's NOT been a fun ride. My unit is really great, I appreciate the paycheck, and I definitely appreciate the work experience, but I really won't be missing it.

Tomorrow is my 29th birthday, by the way! Maybe a 30 before 30 list is in the future? 

Saturday, August 23, 2014

Friends in Need

It's so boring to keep coming back saying, "Wow, I haven't blogged in a while!"
It's true though. I guess I've been having too much fun hanging out with the family. I get home from work and one minute the dog is in my face, then the cat is jumping on my lap and the baby is hungry or cranky. Even with Joe doing all the housework I still don't have spare time!

The past two weeks have been pretty weird. You know that old cliche about how some people stay the exact same as they were in high school? I've been feeling that lately, except it's not high school friends or even college friends. There was this time in between college and moving to Guam when I was dating someone who ran with a "bad crowd" as they say. Not bad... but not really the most responsible. Not to say we all weren't irresponsible! I was having a good time and enjoying being young, that's for sure, but apparently nothing has really improved for many of them.

One of these friends has been in contact with me lately. She has been in a lot of trouble and I had to tell her she couldn't stay with me even though she has nowhere else to go and will probably end up on the street.
Isn't it weird how you look back and realize how much life has changed in only 10 years? Back then I would have let her stay with me, no problem. I would never let a friend sleep on the street. Of course at that point in my life things never seemed to go very smoothly. It makes me feel like I'm stuck up to say that I just can't deal with that lifestyle anymore. There is a certain vibe that I can't have in my house. Not with a baby around... and saying that makes me feel even more stuck up.

I know she is fighting monsters I know nothing about. I guess I'm trying to find a way to feel okay about not taking in my friend. I feel like I'm leaving her out on the street when I'm in a position to help her. It reminds me of when I was living in the city and my room mate was throwing a party. There was this guy who lived in our allyway and usually passed out against a fire hydrant with only the clothes on his back and a bottle of Jack Daniels. One of the people at the party found it absolutely horrible that we weren't helping him out. She ran down and brought him a blanket. I believe he yelled obscenities at her and then the next day the blanket was gone and he was still there with his Jack. This is what I feel like will happen. I will go out on a limb and help my friend, but she will almost inevitably end up right back where she started because she is not able or willing to address the problem. If it were only a blanket I were giving away it wouldn't be a big deal. I know that my family would probably end up feeling taken advantage of. My ultimate fear is that I would end up driving her to a psychiatric ward and leaving her there.

The problem with blogging is that it's generally for people who have finished thoughts. You know, conclusions. I don't have finished thoughts as much as I have perpetual questions. So I guess I'll leave it at that...

Thursday, August 14, 2014

Happy Birthday!

Today is Joe's 26th birthday!

My brothers wedding - the first time together again since we had met!

The day we got engaged, Valentines Day 2012.

Married at the courthouse a week later...

Did it again, the fancy way, later that September.

You came to Alaska for the bears.

We got our Miss Kitty.

Took a giant road trip from Alaska down the coast. Christmas on the beach!

Got our Murray dog. Silly dog.

Had our little Ellie-bear!

Best Papa ever!

So many memories!

Tuesday, August 12, 2014

Ellie Nova Ottati - 4 Months!

Growing? Two teeth! She got them shortly after she turned three months. She has only bitten me a couple times, thankfully. It doesn't hurt as much as it did when she bit me with her gums like she used to!

New and Exciting? She squeals and giggles sometimes when we play with her and continues to smile all the time. She gets super excited and kicks and waves her arms around. She has also discovered her feet and sticks them up in the air a lot. After her teething started she became an absolute DROOL MACHINE. I swear she drools so much it's hard to tell if it's spit up or not. She gets better and better every day at coordinating her hands and holding toys.

Loves? She loves the dog and squeals in delight when he comes over to sniff her. She will stare it him all day. She loves getting her diaper changed, taking a bath, and likes to spend a lot of time on her play mat making "Eh" noises.

Hates? She gets very upset when Joe takes the dog out and starts to cry until they come back. For some reason she gets very upset whenever her nighttime bottles go empty and screams VERY loudly until she gets burped. It doesn't help me sleep, that's for sure!

Looking Forward to? I can't wait until says "Dada!"

Friday, August 1, 2014

Working Mom Survival Kit

Man Crates sent me a message asking me to post a list of my must-have items. I've never gotten a post request before, so I was pretty excited! I checked out their products and I have to say I'm impressed. A Man Crate is a gift basket for men that comes in a wooden recycled crate with a crowbar to open it. You can even pay extra to have it wrapped in a "diabolical duct tape cocoon."
Yes. That's a winner.

They have more than just crates, they also have ammo cans, which are really cool to have. As an army girl you might think I could just swipe a used ammo can from work and take it home, but they keep those things locked up.

One of my favorites was this New Dad Tactical Bag:

Cute, huh?? Er, I mean, MANLY! That's a man's-man baby shower gift! This one inspired my list of must-haves.

So what is in MY survival kit?

1. Minnetonka Thunderbirds - I wear combat boots to work, which means when I get home and change to go out grocery shopping I do NOT want to mess with anymore laces or strappy things. I want comfortable and cute! Not to mention these are perfect for slipping on when you are rushing out the door to get to the pediatrician on time - they match almost anything so you don't have to think about it.

2. Wet N' Wild Color Icon Eyeshadows - At first the Wet N' Wild brand reminded me of the cheap makeup I would wear as a tween, so I never gave it a second look. But then my makeup artist friend gave me an eyeshadow trio and I fell in love. The colors go on beautifully and last all day. When you work hard for your money it's difficult to justify spending it on expensive makeup (at least for me) so when I'm out and wanting to treat myself to a little something I don't feel bad picking up one of these super inexpensive eyeshadows. I own almost the whole collection!

3. Neuro Bliss - I was surprised that this stuff actually works. The stress reducing Bliss formula is magic and it's a lot more acceptable to drink at the office then, you know, wine.

4. The Golden Girls - That's right. If being a busy working mom starts to make you feel old then The Golden Girls will make you feel young again. Stuck on the couch pumping or nursing? Golden Girls. Getting ready for work in the morning? Golden Girls. It's my obsession! May they rest in peace and LONG LIVE Betty White!

5. Chobani Greek Yogurt - These individual cups are a lifesaver when you don't have time to eat. My favorites are pineapple, key lime and black cherry.

Don't forget to check out Man Crates, guys!


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