Friday, June 1, 2012

Elastic Help

This is kinda random but when I come up with something that I feel is successful, I gotta post to possibly help another mom out.
Being a girl and having a girl, we have elastics EVERYWHERE!! Drives me crazy. I put them in plastic baggy's, thrown in the drawer, in a container, etc... I've tried it all. Most of the time it's too messy or inconvenient when you are in a hurry.
So two different options that work for me...

1. Harness clip. I feel this clip is useful in so many ways. I also use one of these to attach my keys to my purse anytime  I am running errands and I need to put my keys in a spot where it won't make me get down and basically rummage through my big ol purse to try to find my keys while I am in a hurry and I've got screaming kids. Done it 1 million times too many!! Anyway back on the subject of elastics.. this is another use for the clip. It's like a quick dispenser. It also holds a TON of elastics, and all sizes. I push it open and an grab an elastic to use. So easy right? And it looks nice in my usual messy top drawer in my bathroom.

2. Paper towel roll. I use these under my daughters sink in a hair tote. It's so easy for her to go and get an elastic and just roll it off the paper towel roll tube. Doesn't take up too much room and is a great way to organize your elastics!

All in all, I think these are two different efficient ways to organize and store all the many elastics we too often lose or make a mess with in our bathrooms.

Now onto different ways to organize all the other items in my bathroom drawers... 

Tuesday, March 27, 2012

Birthday Girl

Happy 4th Birthday to London Grace. 
There is so many things that she does in our family to complete it. She is the most stubborn person in the family for sure. Isaiah always says, "London gets everything she wants if she whines." Hate to admit that. She loves to act like a gremlin. If she plays house or dress up, she always shuts her door so no one can watch her, she is shy like that. She has to dip everything she eats, even her chew able vitamin. I think her favorite food really is ranch or ketchup. She is sensitive yet a tough cookie and will physically fight her brother. She wins every fight with her screaming every battle. She loves to shop with her mama. Loves to lay down with daddy because she says she feels safe. She loves to watch me do makeup. Every person that babysits her says she is the best and easiest child to babysit. If she has to throw up, she tries really hard to just keep it in her mouth until she makes it to the toilet (she started this by age 2). She loves her sleep and gets irritated when waken up. On everyone's birthday, I make them breakfast in bed and walk in with a candle in it and wake them up by singing happy birthday with the rest of the family (family tradition passed on from my mom). As we did it this year with London, she was so upset that we woke her up that she screamed at us and told us to get out. She went back to sleep! So Isaiah ate her waffle with the candle in it. LOL. FAIL. Yesterday she said, "Mom I'm not shy with guys anymore, just girls." uh oh. FAIL. She barely talks to any stranger and yet on her birthday, everywhere we went she told everyone it was her birthday. Thought it was so cute!
We love our London. Can't believe she is the big 4! 

20 questions* : answered by London

1. What is your favorite color? Pink, I mean black.
2. What is your favorite toy? Ariel
3. What is your favorite fruit? bananas
4. What is your favorite tv show? Yo Gabba Gabba. It's funny, those guys and girls there mouth doesn't move.
5. What is your favorite thing to eat for lunch? Chocolate milk and corn dogs and cereal (lol).
6. What is your favorite outfit? Any dress.
7. What is your favorite game? Princess game on Leapster.
8. What is your favorite snack? fruit snacks
9. What is your favorite animal? A giraffe. Because their necks are so long.
10. What is your favorite song? Twinkle, twinkle little star.
11. What is your favorite book? Barbie book that has opposites and colors to open.
12. Who is your best friend? Isaiah (oh how sweet).
13. What is your favorite cereal? Lucky Charms.
14. What is your favorite thing to do outside? jump on the trampoline.
15. What is your favorite drink? chocolate milk and root beer.
16. What is your favorite holiday? Christmas.
17. What do you like to take to bed with you at night? my new teddy bear from my birthday.
18. What is your favorite thing to eat for breakfast? cereal.
19. What do you want for dinner on your birthday? chicken and rice.
20. What do you want to be when you grow up? a mermaid. :) 

Thursday, March 15, 2012

to my kids

My two little sweethearts,

Mama had an overwhelming emotion tonight that came over me and all I wanted to do was go in your room's and wake both of you up and give you lots of loves and tell you how much you make my life a happy place to be in. I am so lucky that somehow someway your dad and I received you into this family. Each one of your silly personalities fit in so perfectly and continue to surprise me.
Isaiah bud, tonight I watched you and what a funny old soul you are and I'm so proud to call you mine. You definitely will live your life with lots of laughs. Laughing is an important part of happiness. Don't ever stop laughing and finding a way to pick all the humor in all things. One thing that brought me close to your daddy was how much we laughed together.  One time we took a trip before we were married and I think we might have laughed the entire time we were gone. I remember it being one of the best times of my life! You inspire me so much and you are only 7 years old. I can't imagine all the many things you will be capable of when you are 20. Thank you for always being a gentleman and always treat girls as if they were all princesses. Thank you for loving your sister and always holding her hand to make sure she is taken care of. You have taken on the role as "big brother" so well and I look forward to watching your relationship with your sister grow as you two become adults. You have so many strength's but one of your biggest strength's is finding a friend everywhere you go, doesn't matter their age or gender, you will find something in common somehow and make friends. Don't ever stop that. As you get older you will learn how important it is to be kind and gentle to everyone, you never know what day they had or what they have been through. There isn't anything you could not do. I'm thankful to have you as my son and my best pal.
Londies, my quiet shy child that I love to kiss. What would I do without my best girlfriend? At 3 years old I can enjoy a day shopping, getting our nails done, going to lunch with you! I'm so lucky. I love to hear your opinions already at such a young age. There isn't a day go by that I don't look at how beautiful you are. Your eyes and eyelashes kill me every time you blink! You will never have a problem in the looks department, that's for sure but one huge thing that I want you to always remember is that being beautiful isn't the most important thing as you grow up and live your life. I want you to love who you are without looking in the mirror. I want your happiness to come from who you are, not what you are or how you look. Life is too short. This will be hard to do because the world's standards go against what I am saying but just trust your mama. I've wasted a lot of years trying to figure this out and don't want you to do the same thing. Your validation should never come from another person, only yourself and the man upstairs. You are such a great baby sister. You always make sure your brother gets a treat if you get one. And there isn't a day that goes by that you don't make sure he gets a kiss and an "I love you Isaiah" before he rushes off to school in the morning. Nothing makes a mommy prouder than to hear that. One thing I love about you is your silliness. You find the "silly" in everything and I laugh every time you point it out. Please don't ever stop that, being silly is fun and carefree and that's the way to live your life especially when you go through trials that come your way. Find that passion in something that makes you happy and go for it. You have so many talented and creative people on both sides of the family, there isn't anything you couldn't do! Just remember that when mommy watches you twirl at 3 years old, I'm loving every second of it. You have made my dreams come true and I have found my meaning in life through you and your brother.
Please continue to be patient with me. I still have a lot to learn being your mommy but you have definitely made it easy for me to stick with it and never give up. You are two of the most important people in my life (along with daddy) and when you are sad, I'm sad. When I see you happy, that makes me happy. I look forward to watching all the many things you both will do throughout your young innocent lives. Thanks for letting me your biggest fan in all that you do. When I mess up, please don't give up on me. I'll never stop trying to do better.

Love you forever & always-

Friday, February 10, 2012

play. play. more play

I love this film strip of them together. Always silly... 

London wrote a letter to Princess Ariel:

She also likes to have tea parties with her stuffed animals.. too die for!!! 

Wednesday, January 25, 2012

Utah's Most Eligible Bachelor

I am about to introduce to you one of Utah's most eligible Bachelor, Aaron Fluhman. If you don't know him, you are missing out. He is an amazing friend of ours and we are spotlighting him because he deserves a beautiful, smart, witty, lovable woman in his life. He has too many great qualities to pass up on. He is what we call my "2nd" husband because he helps me in ways Jake can't (keep it clean people). He takes out my trash when I need him to and he is an amazing uncle to my kiddos. I grabbed some photos I had of him throughout a few years and thought I would throw this out there cause I want nothing more than to show off our friend that is dear to our hearts and find him his future girlfriend or wife. I know many of you that see this must know of a single girl or single mom in your lives that think this would be a good match or even just friends. It's all about who you know! :) If you are interested in getting his information or have a question, message me or leave a comment!

Until then, let's find this man a woman!

Even Superhero's Get Tired..

Monday, January 16, 2012

Hello 2012- nice to finally meet you.

My hopes, determination, and goals for 2012:

  • "Excuse the mess, we are making memories here!"  I want to finally put a sincere effort into remembering what is the most important job and priority of being a mother is. I so easily get frustrated with my children just because they are being kids and my house isn't the way I feel it should be. I am grateful for people in my life that remind me of this principle.. I have one friend that just had a baby and I was over at her house and her kids were running wild and she just smiled and said, "I just try to remember that it won't always be this way and this is why we are here is to be mom's and I just want to have happy children." Really inspired me. Just to help remind me, I got a pendent made with a little child's hand in the middle and the saying, "making memories."
  • Boundaries. Reapplying the boundaries I have made in the past that have made my relationships stronger and not so easily forgetting how black and white they should be. My emotional health is just as important to me or more than anything else! If I am not in a good place emotionally, it's hard to function in life. 
  • 10k. This past year I have fulfilled things in my life I never saw myself doing. It wasn't planned nor thought about it as I rang in 2011 however by the end of this year, I was able to add things to the list I made. I never have considered myself a runner but I pushed hard and did my best to find the positive side of running and pushing through. I ran my 1st 5k on Thanksgiving Day and I felt like I did great. So for this year I am preparing mentally and physically for my 1st 10k. Not sure when it will happen but it will happen before the years end.
  • Read. Prioritize my life so that reading can happen and it can help balance my life a little bit! I'm always happier when I have a book to dive into.
  • Eat to live. My dad has always told me to only eat to live, not live to eat. Not sure why he felt that was important until now. I think it is important way of thinking. Our bodies need fuel to have the energy we need to get through our very busy hectic crazy lives and in order to do that, we must feed ourselves with the right kind of food. So I hope to not only do this for myself, but secretly implement this into my children's lives as well. We are what we eat and I have learned that the very hard way.
  • Gratitude. 2011 I caught myself being more gracious than previous years but I want to continue on with this and watch how it changes my life and the people around me.
  • Learn to love me for me. Cheesy and cliche as that sounds, it's true. I've lived too many years in darkness because I never was happy looking in the mirror for all sorts of reasons. It's not worth living that way just because I never will live up to my own expectations. It will never be enough and that isn't okay anymore. I need to look at the many advantages I do have and the beautiful qualities that make me, me. 
  • Surround myself with people that bring out the positive in myself. I've wasted many years trying to make everyone like me just to learn that they weren't even true friends and I didn't even enjoy being around them. So this year is to true friends, as few as they may be I know they are true.
  • Laugh. Laugh through trials, heartaches, and pain. Laughing has cured my soul and I don't want to lose my sense of humor! It's one of the only drugs left I CAN take. 
  • Learn something new about my kids every single day and notate the cute, smart, funny things they say so I can always look back and remember the details of their lives.
  • Any item in my house must have a home. This basically equals to not stop the battle in organization. An organized house makes a happy mama. ** As long as it doesn't come in the way of resolution #1**
  • Everyone is fighting battle. Continue to not forget that we all have our own trials in life and I have no room for judgement. Treat everyone I meet nicely and think of their feelings more than my own selfishness.
  • Service. I have an amazing support group in many areas of my life. After all the time they have spent with me by either laughing, crying, advising, helping, listening, funding, or merely just loving me, I want to give back. I am a true believer in karma and it is important to me that I can learn to help others in ways special people have helped me.

Friday, January 13, 2012

Goodbye * Thank You * Chow

Dearest 2011,

You came at me with a shot gun to the head. It was not a good start of a year, that's for sure. Luckily it was all up hill from there. I learned some hard lessons and because of great friends, family, and support system, I was able to heal with almost every negative feeling that came to visit. I had many moments where I looked outside of my normal perspective and saw what a beautiful life I have and I embraced every single moment. After so many years of so many low lows, I fought the norm and to choose to start looking at the brighter part of my life. Thank you 2011! Now on the other hand you really hit me with a curve ball when my very well respected and loving grandpa left this earth. He was the complete back bone of our family. It really shook up my family and it's been hard to watch my mom in pain, but I know it was his time and I'm glad he isn't in his day to day physical pain any longer. We love and miss so many things about you Gramps...:)
Because life comes so quick and we don't slow it down and appreciate the small things in our lives, I want to share some of my very own accomplishments that happened in the year of 2011.
Came out of my shell and pushed myself to meet new people in the area and really show them the real vulnerable Mandy. Talk about an accomplishment!
Watched my beautiful baby girl turn 3 years old and go off to preschool for the first time, along with going and leaving me in the nursery class to be a big Sunbeam.
Watched my first born become an actual little man. He has gone from white belt to a proud purple belt (not an easy task). He didn't just start up school, but he started going school FULL time. Talk about mixed emotions. Letting your baby leave you for most of the day and just hope they are okay. Lots of tears and holding onto my leg for the first few months but eventually started going with his head held high. Now he is in the "older" Primary classes and even teaching me parts of the gospel I had not learned yet! I've been able to watch him learn a new language this year which was awesome and completely unexpected. And right before 2011 came to an end, he turned the big 7!
My two babies asked me if they could bare their testimonies in Sacrament Meeting. Shocked because neither Jake or I have done this (not proud) in front of them. But I watched my shy little 3 year old baby get up and talk to the whole congregation on what she knows to be true. Then to listen to my son get up and say so many beautiful things coming from his heart on what he felt about what he learns in primary. That was a proud moment!
Received a calling at my church as a nursery leader. I wasn't sure about this at first but as time went on I felt like I was right where I needed to be to spend most of time in church. It feels so good to watch these children that don't know you at all and slowly over time they love you and want you to either hold them, protect them, teach them, read to them, etc.. I take my lessons seriously and feel proud of myself for accepting the calling.
Not only became a first time pet owner, but a pretty good darn one. We started out with a learning experience by getting my very 1st pet named Cupcake. If you follow my blog or my life in anyway you probably knew about Cupcake. She was a new kitty we bought merely in fear of the mice taking over our home. So let's just say that didn't' work out and I completely realized I am not a cat person. Truthfully I have never been a "animal" person in general! So when I told Jake I wanted a dog he laughed. Eventually we bought Nacho as a tiny baby puppy. I was so in love with him. It's been a hard year with teaching him the basics with what is okay and what is not okay and the potty training, chewing on very expensive things but eventually I became a great dog owner and trainer. He now rings the bell anytime he wants to go outside to play or go potty, SCORE! And not only does he shake, he also sits, lays, plays dead, roll over, and dances. Jake calls me the "dog whisperer."
Went on lots of alone date nights with the hubs oh and lots of group dates..and found everyone of them to be a hard earned and well worth it. Yeah for stronger marriages.
Forrest Gump. Okay Okay I didn't run across the whole country but I sure started running a little here and there and started to actually kinda like it. I never gave myself a chance to even try to run. I always hated it. Told everyone including myself I wasn't made for running and never thought it would change. Somehow someway I got myself to accomplish a darn small 5k Turkey Trot but hey it was a organized run I actually trained for! Ending 2010, I would have put money down that I would never run ANY k in my life. SO BOOM! Huge achievement! (and didn't stop running the whole way on race day.. go me).
I did it, actually did it.. doing makeup. It's always been a fantasy of mine to actually do makeup for people and actually make money off of it. It's not always easy to push your own newly shown work and hope people like it. Granted it's not what celebrity makeup artists are making but dang it, I am doing it and cashing in. And the best part is I actually like my work when I see it in photos! So take that all previous years of not believing in myself to do it! I was lucky enough to work with the best photographers around along with beautiful ladies of all ages including Miss Utah contestants to teenage performing arts group auditioning for Nickelodeon. I was also asked to teach my makeup knowledge with all contestants in a local pageant. I can't wait to see what the future holds in this area of my life.
Did more service than I did the years previous. I searched out a foundation I found very personal to me and contacted the woman who created it. I was able to spend time working with beautiful young ladies in finding the special girl they were and what unique qualities they had. I left and felt honored to be able to sacrifice my time from my own daily duties and get out of my comfort zone and teach what I only wish I knew at their ages!
Brought back an old dusty but mastered skill and started choreographing dance pieces for different production numbers such as Miss Davis County pageant. Also performed a dance routine with an old group of overall queen's for an event. Let me tel you, that was not easy. I was the oldest there and was one of the only mom's that participated. Talk about a challenge!
Graduating from a support group I had for over 3 years. Hard work but worth every minute and dime I spent being there for the best 3.5 years of my life. I met amazing people and learned unforgettable tools to live a healthy and a happy life. And the best part was that I was the one doing it for me.. to be a better Mandy, mommy, wife, daughter, and sister.
Celebrated my 8th year of marriage with my hard working babies daddy :) wink wink. Another year I can say we made it!! It hasn't always been a walk in the park but grateful we are still going strong after so many bumps on the sidewalk.
And luckily we were able to take a few different vacations this year down to good ol Sin City, Las Vegas. We lived it up down there for two different occasions.
2011 has been good to me, what can I say? I'm proud of myself and the extra work I did to be able to check many things off my bucket-list and to honestly say with certainty that I spent the past 365 days living and learning!

Thank you for all the positive things that have come to pass this year. I will hold them in my memories along within my beloved blog. I have learned a lot from you. Now onto new 2012 where the possibilities are endless and hope to love more, laugh harder, and possibly work on a new addition to the Martin family at some point in the year... eeek! HANG ON, it's going to get bumpy:)

Tuesday, January 10, 2012

Running Barefoot is Highly Overrated.

You know what is so sad? I couldn't wear these IF I wanted to! I always knew one day somehow someway my disability would be shown in one way or another! Darn "Running Barefoot" shoes. Thanks a bunch! ;) Wait, maybe just maybe if Dr Phil or Dr Oz get a hold of this post they will find a way to personalize a pair designed specifically only for my very "special"  webbed toes. 

Side note: Can you imagine how silly they would look?? hehehe. You have my permission to laugh just this once about me.. only once.

p.s. My poor poor children-. Who knows what 2020 will bring when it comes to new inventions that have to show off their beautiful (handed down from their mommy) webbed toes. Good luck Buz & Londs. Remember Mommy always told you that "different is special." lol.