Saturday, May 31, 2014

House Tour: Charlotte's Bedroom and Bathroom

I will continue to do the house pictures slowly.  This weekend we had visitors, which always means it's time to clean...seriously!  Of course, Charlotte's room is always filled with toys everywhere.  I figured I would pick up all the toys in time for our guests to come (and take pictures).  Not even five minutes after her room was SPOTLESS, she destroyed it!  Luckily, I got the pictures as she was coming in and playing.  If you could only see the room doesn't even look like the same room ;)
There are still some things I need to finish (and luckily my mom is coming next week).  But you get the main idea.  I really love the idea of a little girls room being PINK, but (before I knew I wasn't having more children) I thought we should do a color that could be for both a boy and girl.  The turquoise won and I LOVE how it turned out.  I wanted her bedroom and bathroom to match; that's why they are the same paint color, accented stripe wall, and matching wall art (above her kitchen and in her bathroom).  It's big enough 

Kitchen, Shopping car, and doll bunk beds were all Craigslist finds!

Rocking chair was my grandmother's and she also made the quilt when Charlotte was born.


Friday, May 30, 2014

Nap time

Nap time has dwindled down to once a day in our home, which is never a favorite transition for most mothers I've talked too.  Luckily, Charlotte takes a pretty long nap where I can get a lot done.  Some days, like today, she doesn't show any signs of being tired.  Although, I know if I don't put her down for a nap, I'm going to regret it later on in the day when it's too late.  I put her down and she just cried hysterically for like twenty minutes.  I finally went in to see if giving her a binkie would calm her down.  Nope!  So I took her out of the crib and laid down in my bed.  She loves Mommy and Daddy's bed...doesn't every child?  I laid down next to her, facing her, and she held onto my nose (?).  I rubbed her back and she just looked at me.  Oh, those are the moments I cherish!  She started to fall asleep so I tried to slip away.  She grabbed tighter to my nose.  I tried everything in my power not to laugh.  She is such a stink.  She then moved her hand around my face, with her eyes closed, making sure I was still there.  Of course I ran to get my camera.  I love documenting her life and the little moments like these.  Now to get my workout in and clean the house before the weekend!

There is nothing more than the feeling of being needed and wanted.  Motherhood really brings that to a whole new level.  I love that I'm the one that can comfort her, bring her peace and protect her.  There are lots of great aspects about being a mom, but I think those are my favorite.      

Monday, May 26, 2014

Fun Events in Between Weddings

I started the week with Nicole's wedding festivities and ended with Courtney's, but in between I have had other fun moments (yes, besides Disneyland).  
On Tuesday, my cousin Kasey had a baby shower.  It was fun because it was the first of several times I'll see the Neilson's this week.  She looked so great and I was glad to hear, feeling great!  We went to Chili's, had a great lunch and visited with family.

Wednesday, I had lunch with my friend Christine.  We have been friends since high school.  When we lived in Rancho Santa Margarita, we had just started hanging out more, going to Disneyland, meeting for lunch and walking the lake...then we moved :(  It was fun seeing her and the boys and catching up.  Friends like Christine make me want to come back to California.  

Friday and Saturday morning, we went out to breakfast at Paul's Kitchen in Mission Viejo. All I have to say is why have I never been here before?! It was really good and cheap!
Sunday I made a quick stop to Sprinkles for some "Thank You" cupcakes for my grandparents and Robyn for watching Charlotte over the weekend, and a couple for me to enjoy! 

Last night, my cousin, Haylee, opened her mission call going to Norway Oslo.  Haylee, you will be a great "Sister Neilson!" 

The two girl cousins to go on a far!

Brady and Charlotte did NOT want to pose for a picture.

During this game of back and forth, Charlotte actually caught the ball for the first time!
It has been a busy, fun, productive week! Although, I need to go back and see my hubby. We have all missed each other so much. I never thought I would be this anxious to run back to North Carolina, but it's time to be together as a family. 

Sunday, May 25, 2014

Courtney and Josh's Wedding Festivities

I loved starting my trip with wedding festivities and ending the trip doing the same.  Both weddings were so gorgeous!  Both such different venues, different environment, different people, but were so special in their own way.

The year I was born, 1985, I was lucky enough to have two other GIRL cousins join me.  Nicole was born in February, me in May, and Courtney in August.  As we grew up, we did a lot together...sleepovers, mall glamour shots (oh yeah!), hung out at every Neilson event together, birthday parties, Academy for Girls...the list really goes on and on because we lived so close.  I always loved being so close to my family (one of the hardest parts about living in NC).  Right before high school, Nicole moved to Temecula :( and I moved back down to Orange County from Brentwood.  Courtney and I started doing a ton of things together, again.  We had our fun moments and not so fun moments (let's not even talk about our senior Mammoth trip).  We had early morning seminary our freshman year together, went to parties, worked at Wild Rivers Waterpark, stake dances, girls camp, EFY, sleepovers, were Nicole's bridesmaids, and again, the list could go on and on.  We hung out all the time!!  Then once we went to college, we visited each other (Courtney came to Rexburg and I visited Provo).  We have always stayed in touch no matter the distance. 

I believe it was her birthday a couple years back that I found out about Josh (her Josh).  I called to wish her a happy birthday and she told me there was someone in her life.  From that moment, I could tell there was something special about him.  Josh was bringing out this giddy school girl.  Not in the annoying way, but in the "in love" way.  Like what was said at the wedding, he brings out so many smiles in Courtney.  In fact, I don't think I have seen her NOT smile since she's been with him.  While we were living in Utah, we had the chance to meet Josh a couple times.  And we liked him instantly.  Courtney is one of the smartest people and I knew she would pick a great person to spend her life with.  I know she made a great choice with Josh (maybe it's the name ;)) and I can't wait to see how their future unfolds. 

Thursday night kicked off the wedding celebration for the happy couple with Courtney's bridal shower, while all the men went to Dave and Busters with Josh.  It was seriously, one of the largest bridal showers I had seen.  Josh had a good number of family members come out from Wisconsin, which was so nice of them.  Courtney went around the room to introduce all of us and it took a good amount of time.  I'm sure she loved having so many friends and family there.  Nicole and Heidi put the shower together and did a great job with the game, decorations and food.  Everything was great!

When I received my invitation, there was a seperate card inviting out of town guests to a dinner the night before and brunch the day after.  I thought that was so nice of them.  It really made the trip that much more special.  Since I don't get to see Courtney that often these days, I really appreciated her thinking of me (and everyone else) traveling a good distance to be there.  That was something her and Josh didn't have to do.  It just shows their character.  Friday night was the dinner at Lucille's.  It was so fun!  A lot of Arlene's (Courtney's mom) family was there, as well as all of Josh's family who traveled.  The food was great as well!  My grandparents and aunt Robyn met us there to take Charlotte for the weekend.  A big THANK YOU to them!!  I know they loved the time they got to spend with her.  It was such an enjoyable weekend. 

Saturday was finally the day we had all been waiting for!!  I was so excited to see the dress, the venue, bridesmaids, the groom...EVERYTHING!  It was all so beautiful.  When we first arrived, we took some pictures and walked around the venue.  It reminded me of "Father of the Bride" because of the tent that we all ate under.  It was the perfect size for the amount of people they invited.  I loved it!

 We finally took our seats and the wedding started.  The grandparents walked down first, then the parents and siblings.  The wedding party followed and they all looked great! 

When it was time for Courtney and my uncle Rick to walk, we all stood up.  Of course I started crying!  Courtney was BEAMING and looked fantastic!! 

The stake president (of the stake I just moved from) is very good friends with Courtney's family and she asked him to officiate the wedding.  It was the perfect length with a lot of beautiful things said.  They showed off their rings, kissed for the first time as husband and wife, and were pronounced HUSBAND AND WIFE!

I loved what came next.  Both, Josh and Courtney, gave a little toast and thanked everyone for being there.  Then they cut the cake.  Nobody ever sees the cake being cut and I loved that they did it right there while we were all surrounding them.

The rest of the night was filled with great food, family, good company and lots of dancing!!  It was so fun and I am so glad I could be apart of it!!

To wrap up the weekend, they threw us out-of-towners a brunch at Cheesecake Factory!

After brunch, we went down to Balboa Island and watched Courtney open gifts! I was so glad I could be apart of so many events for Courtney and Josh! We are really excited for another member of the family and to get to know Josh better!!