Thursday, August 28, 2014

Obligatory Season Opener Post

IT'S GAME DAY! 
That's right, tonight at 6:00pm Central Standard Time my Gophers will be kicking off for the first time in this 2014 season! RAH! It shouldn't be new information that I bleed Maroon & Gold and Gopher Football is one of my most favorite things in life. In honor of opening day and our 11th season with season tickets, here are my 11 favorite Gopher Football memories. 

11. Our Wedding. The day we were married the Gophers played at Michigan State and lost, we were all listening to the game at the church before the ceremony. So while it wasn't the best day for my Gophs, it is still one of my favorite memories because immediately following the "I Dos" we grabbed our wedding party, hopped in a party bus and headed for the stadium. This also happens to be my favorite part of our wedding day. 


10. Kenley's 1st Game. Bringing Kenley to her very first Gopher game last season was so fun and so special! This little girl really has no choice to be a super fan and I am so excited for the family memories to come!


9. Pregnant Rickshaw. Being preggo for nearly an entire season isn't the most fun, but getting VIP treatment is! One of the games while I was pregnant, my dad flagged down a rickshaw to give us a ride to the stadium so my big ol preggo self didn't have to walk. Gotta love him! It was so random and so fun and an ode to our favorite NYC mode of transportation.


8. Homecoming 2008. This particular game is one of those epic yet hazy memories, one that started at 7am and ended at probably 4am the next day. There were several bars, a game suite, a brutal Gopher loss and me waking up to Jason and Jeff in my bed while I slept on the couch. Enough said. 


7. First ever game at TCF Bank Stadium. In 2009 we got ourselves a new stadium and after 28 years of playing off campus we were all pretty damn excited to break in a brand spankin' new stadium! I still goosebumps walking in to that gorgeous building.


6. Gophers vs Iowa 2013. Our honeymoon friends are from Iowa and therefore cheer for the Hawkeyes, one of the Gophers biggest rivals. So to have Bill & Jackie come to Minnesota to for a game was SUPER FUN! Although, the stupid Hawks killed the Gophers we had a blast. Not pictured: horizontal rain and massive gusts of wind nearly blowing over our tent.


5. Music City Bowl. I am pretty embarrassed that these are the only 4 pictures I have from this epic trip to Nashville. It's a pretty long and hilarious story of how this trip came to be but that really should a blog post all on it's own. Let's just say it was an awesome trip!


4. Beating Iowa. The Gophers are fairly notorious for choking during big games and when we play our rivals, Iowa, it's always a big game. So to beat Iowa and exactly one week before our wedding was SO.FRICKIN.AWESOME. We rushed the field, celebrated all night and even met our quarterback at the time who just-so-happens to be my favorite player.


3. at Northwestern. This is not only one of my favorite Gopher memories, but one of my all time favorite trips. Me, Jason, my brother and sister-in-law drove to Chicago for the Gopher/Wildcat game...we were the first people in the lot, made some crazy new friends and about halfway through our tailgate, out of nowhere MY DAD SHOWED UP! He surprised us all by flying in to Chicago that morning. To say we were excited and surprised would be a huge understatement. 


2. at Michigan. When I was a junior in college my dad surprised my brother and I with a whirlwind trip to Michigan to watch the Gophers take on the Wolverines. We left super early Saturday morning on a flight made up entirely of Gopher fans {no joke, we sang the rouser at take off}. We made it to Ann Arbor with enough time for a Gopher fan breakfast, a super fun walk around campus, and a little tailgating before the game. The Big House was an incredible stadium and THE GOPHERS WON on a last second 30 yard field goal kicked by our terrible kicker - my dad was so nervous he covered his eyes and when the stadium erupted he was sure our kicker missed it, until he opened his eyes and realized that it wasn't the stadium going nuts, it was the rowdy Gopher fans! We celebrated at a cute little bar downtown Ann Arbor then flew back to Minneapolis that same night. It is a 24 hours I will never forget!


1. Getting Engaged! This is a Gopher memory that will be REALLY hard to beat. Getting engaged on the 50 yard line was seriously a dream come true and the most perfect way to get engaged, not to mention I had NO CLUE it was coming! You can read the whole story HERE if you'd like. 

I'm off to press my Maroon & Gold and head to campus!
RAH! 




Wednesday, August 27, 2014

A Whale of a Baby Shower

When one of my best friends, Christina, found out she was having a baby girl, I instantly knew I wanted to do some sort of nautical themed baby shower consisting of Navy and Pink as our friendship has basically been built on laying by the pool and boating. 
When I saw a bunch of adorable whale related baby outfits at Target, it was a done deal. You all know by now that planning parties is pretty much my favorite thing in the world {see my BBQ Couples Baby Shower, Fox Themed Baby Shower and Kenley's Pink Balloon 1st Birthday Party} but this one might have been my favorite! With help from my mom, we were able to put together a girly and summery baby shower for Christina and her peanut. 

As any good party knows, it starts with the stationery. My incredible friend Erin designed the invitations and all the printed materials for me and I'm obsessed with how they turned out. Erin totally got my vision and I really can't believe how quickly and easily these came together. Check out Designs by Erin to see more of her amazing work!
From there we worked on the decor,  food and games. Everything was hot pink. light pink and navy and if it had a whale on it....I bought it. Christina's Granny Frannie even said "What's with all the whales?" HA! I also DIY'd some poms, a diaper life preserver and a garland. Looking back I wish I had done more with the food table, but live and learn, right? There's always another party!

In the SHOWER bags were one baby item starting with the letter written on the bag {S-shampoo, H-hanger, O-onesies...you get the drift} and the guests had to guess the items inside. It's my new favorite shower game. Probably my favorite detail from the shower was our little "Message in a Bottle" station. Each guest was asked to write a message filled with advice or well wishes to Christina and roll it up and put it in a bottle. Then, Christina can open them as she feels she needs some encouragement.

For the menu,  we did a light summery menu consisting of Chicken Salad on Croissants, a Balsamic Strawberry & Walnut Salad, Watermelon Feta Basil bites, Deviled Eggs, and these yummy Cucumber Dill Bacon Bites. Drinks consisted of Raspberry Lemonade and Bottled Whale Water - simple, easy and preggo appropriate! The cake and the whale cookie favors were made by a friend of mine and were just as delicious as they were adorable!

It was such a fun and special day celebrating one of my most favorite people! I could not have pulled this off without the help of my mom and I love that we can do things like this together. My mom totally gets how type-A I am and that I have a vision in my head which doesn't always come together in the most glamorous way - but usually ends up OK.

Enough of me blabbing...here's the Whale Shower:

Baby Clothes, SHoes & Sunglasses : Target
Whale Towel : Pottery Barn Kids
Invitations & Printed materials : Designs by Erin
Message Bottles : Invitation in a Bottle
Cake & Cookies : Personal Friend {let me know if you want her contact info!}
Food & Decor : Me & My Mama




Tuesday, August 26, 2014

Monthly Motivation: Meet My Health Coach!

I am so excited to be linking up with my Beeb and friends Pinky & Lynn for their Monthly Motivation linkup!
Life Love and Puppy Prints
The purpose of the link up is to share health and fitness goals, inspiration and stories in hopes of encouraging and motivating each other to be as healthy as we can be. For the very first Monthly Motivation I wanted to introduce all of you to someone who has been my weekly motivation for the past several months. I met my health coach, Danielle, through our mutual friend Kari and was in love with her pretty much instantly. Danielle is so knowledgeable, so sweet and so fun. In such a short time she has taught me so much and has truly inspired change within me. As she always says “it takes baby steps” but the things she is teaching me and the ways she is inspiring me are going to result in permanent healthy changes for me and my family. However, if you are anything like me, you might be asking “What in the heck is a health coach?” And so I’ve asked Danielle to introduce herself and also ask some basic health coaching questions!

. . . .

Hello! My name is Danielle Zacheretti and I am obsessed with health and wellness!
Don’t get me wrong, I love a fresh baked cookie as much as the next girl, I just like mine packed with good nutrition! My quest for health and wellness started with a sudden desire to workout which turned into a slight obsession which turned into a career in personal training. Around this same time my daughter, now 8, was diagnosed with a disease where tumors would grow on her vocal chords. She needed surgery every few weeks to have them removed so they wouldn’t block her airway. This lead to a deep desire to want to help my daughter heal. I immersed myself in health and nutrition. Over the years her condition got better and better and she is now a healthy 8 year old!
My obsession for health and wellness has run over into every area of my life. It has helped my family, my friends, and it lead to an extremely healthy baby boy who is now 7.5 months old. I started health coaching 2 years ago with an emphasis on helping women get healthy PRE pregnancy which in turn leads to a healthy pregnancy and healthy baby!
I am happily married to a man who gracefully puts up with all of my quirks about food and natural living! In fact, I think he secretly loves how healthy he has become over the years.

What is a health coach?
“Someone who can help you change your behaviors in regards to nutrition and lifestyle by challenging your inner wisdom, identifying your values, and transforming your goals into actions.”

Why did you become a health coach?
"I became a health coach because I have experienced firsthand that given the chance, your body can heal itself through good nutrition. We have become so brain washed as a society that pizza is a vegetable and that pharmaceuticals are the way to fix every problem. I want to help as many people as I can learn how to create a lifestyle and learn the reason WHY Doritos aren’t good for you, not just learn to not eat them!"

What is your favorite thing about being a health coach?
"My favorite thing about being a health coach is when a client will text me with a victory moment! Something as simple as “I cleaned out my cupboards and stocked my fridge with real whole food” or “I forgave myself for for ‘x’ and now I understand why Idid that.” The breakthroughs are amazing to be a part of!"

What is the most challenging thing about being a health coach?
"It’s at times frustrating when you coach someone and realize that you want good health for them more than they do."

What is the biggest misconception on health coaching?
"There are a lot of different types of wellness coaches out there today with companies like Isogenix and BeachBody, this is not the same as a certified health coach. A certified Health Coach is a wellness authority and supportive mentor who motivates individuals to cultivate positive health choices and through education and support helps clients to achieve their health goals through lifestyle and behavior adjustments."

What is one piece of advice you would like to share with the world?
"There are so many! Probably that no matter what you suffer from; be it depression, obesity, diabetes, infertility, migraines, etc. your body knows how to heal itself when given the right tools (nutrient dense foods). That and maybe that fat doesn’t make you fat, sugar does. OH! And everything you put in your mouth will either help prevent disease or create it!"


I am so excited to share with all of your what I have been learning and the changes I've been making! 

Monday, August 25, 2014

Naked Weekend.

We have now tried two different potty training methods:
1. The "buy a potty and hope your kid just figures it out" method
2. The "naked all weekend" method

Both failed. 

Over the past several months Kenley has showed pretty much every sign of potty training readiness and so we got her a potty and every now and then we'd put her on it, a couple times she went and we went nuts. We knew full well it was total luck and timing but we praised, rewarded, hooted and hollered anyways. And then, I got sick of diapers. Like really sick of them. I knew that putting Kenley on the potty only here and there wasn't going to get the job done and the alternative seemed super daunting. So we decided to do what I swore I would never do and attempt a naked weekend. It had worked for a couple of friends around Kenley's age so we figured "let's go balls to the walls."
We didn't leave the house. Our kid was naked. We set an alarm and put her on the potty every 10-20 minutes. We sang songs, read books and made potty time fun. We were encouraging and patient. We explained that we pee in the potty not on the floor. Kenley helped clean up her mess. We did everything we were supposed to.

We had ZERO potties in the potty and about fifteen potties all over the floor. 

The only things we accomplished this weekend were teaching Kenley to remove her own diaper which she had done in the morning some time before peeing all over her bed AND completely ruining the excitement of the potty. She now hears the word "potty" and instantly freaks out. 

But when life gives you lemons....or pee all over your carpet....you make lemonade. And our silver lining is that we learned despite all the "readiness" Kenley is not ready. She was just as surprised as we were each and every time she had an accident. So we will buy more diapers and work on repairing the potty damage we have done in hopes that when she is ready she isn't terrified. 





Tuesday, August 5, 2014

The ABCs of Kenley

I've seen this fun little ABC getting-to-know-you game going around in the blog world and thought it might be a fun way to catch you up on what is going on with our crazy little almost 21 month old {also known as MY BABY IS ALMOST TWO! *tear*}.

Plus, Kenley has been working on her ABCs every night before bed so it's quite fitting. 


A. "Allgin" - which is how she says both Oliver {her little puppy baby} and Ally {her Auntie}

B. Busy, Busy, Busy - this kid does not sit still for even one second of the day. 

C. Crazy - my child is nuts. She does and says the weirdest things, has so much energy and is sassy to the limits.

D. Dancer - girlfriend has some moves. Her go-to is legit a booty drop {takes after her mama}. Kenley also took dance classes this summer!

E."Eeeeeee" - what Kenley calls slides because she yells "Eeeeeee" when she goes down them.

F. Full of it - if you ask Kenley a question and she doesn't know the answer she will make one up {just like her father}. For example if you ask "Kenley what does the wall say?" without hesitating she will reply with something like "daga-doo".

G. Gorgeous. I know I am biased, but sometimes I look at her gorgeous little face and cannot believe she is mine.

H. "Hop hop" - this would be what she calls bunnies and also what says when she makes her stuffed animals "walk"

I. Independent - I am grateful that Kenley has learned to play independently {at least part of the time}. She also loves tasks like "go throw this in the garbage" or "put the clothes in the hamper" we are still working on "put your toys away"

J. Jump - Kenley LOVES to jump! Her feet don't actually leave the ground but if you ask her to jump she will try and then point to everyone in the room demanding that they too "bop" {Kenley for jump}

K.Kind - Kenley is a little share-bear and also gets upset when anyone else is upset.

L.Laugh - her real laugh is my favorite sound in the world but currently when she gets really excited she does this very Bevis & Butthead sounding laugh which is both hilarious and incredibly annoying.

M. "MomMom" - Kenley's name for me and my favorite word she says. I love hearing that little voice yelling "mommom" from her crib, or when I get home, or when she wants me to sit by her.

N. "Nen" - how Kenley says "Kenley". She calls herself Nen and it's about the cutest thing in the entire world. Everything in the house is either MomMom, DadDad or Nen depending on who it belongs to.

O. Outside - Just like her mama, if Kenley could be outside all day every day she would be as happy as can be. She will sit out on her deck by herself for an hour just because she LOVES to be outside.

P. Pickle - Kenley's favorite food, currently.

Q. Quick - you can't turn your back for a second with this one. She's speedy, sneaky, and very curious. I swear I spend half my day just trying to figure out where she put something I didn't even know she took.

R. Runner - Walking is not longer an option, running is now the primary mode of transportation

S. Sharpie - apparently in Kenley's mind sharpies are lipstick. Orange was her first attempt then she tried a lovely silver shade. Shame on mom for turning her back for two seconds.
T.Tantrum - we've officially entered the Toddler Tantrum stage of life. Kenley doesn't quite understand why she can't do whatever she wants and get whatever she wants despite being able to communicate that with us. It's fun.

U.Undies - we are still very lackadaisically trying to potty train but I'm nearing the point of tossing the diapers and buying some undies because I am OVER the diaper changes. 

V. Vegetarian? This child could eat fruits & veggies {and pickles} all day long and could care less about meat.

W. "Wallykazaam" her favorite TV show. We hear "Walla-walla-walla" {Kenley talk for Wally}about 400 times a day

X."X Marks the Spot" - OK, I know this is a stretch but it's X for crying out loud. Kenley's new trick is closing one eye and saying "argh" like a pirate. Just watch the very end of the ABC video for proof.

Y. "yeaaaaah" - if you ask Kenley a question 95% of the time she will answer with a very drawn out "yeaaaah" not "yes" but "yeaaaaah"

Z."zzzzzz" - this little buddy girl is still a great sleeper. I am so grateful we haven't had to deal with any sleep regressions and that I can be sure my babe is always rested and ready for action.