Saying Farewell to 2016

Saturday, December 31, 2016

Right now, we are currently spending the weekend with my family in a cabin in our local mountains to ring in 2017, and I can't think of anywhere more fun and cozy! :) This year was a bit more eventful than we would have liked; with Brian getting injured at work, finding out that we need to do IVF if we want to expand our family, and a bunch of other random setbacks, but I know 2017 is going to bring great things. I can totally feel it!

I've been thinking a lot about resolutions for 2017, but really the one thing that keeps resonating with me is to stop worrying so much about tomorrow. The planner in me always wants to know what's going to happen next so that I can sort out my life accordingly. If there's anything I have learned this year, though, it's that you truly never know what can happen,  and God's plans are so much greater than ours. Lately, I feel myself missing out on the present when I worry so much about the future, and I want to put an end to that this year. We only have one life to live after all!

So, cheers to all of you, my friends! May 2017 bring you health, happiness, and many blessings! As for me? Well, all I'm going to think about right now is building a snowman with the most precious girl ever. :) 

Happy New Year!!!

Until next time! XoXoXo

Christmas 2016!

Monday, December 26, 2016

I woke up this morning in total disbelief that Christmas is already over! These past couple of weeks went by so fast, but they were oh, so fun and so busy (notice the lack of blog posts). This was by far the best Christmas yet with Baylee. She had the time of her life opening presents and visiting our families, and I loved every minute.

We started on Friday night with our annual Christmas Pajama Party. I had every intention of doing a blog post about it, but the day before my phone was killed by a bottle of Jameson (I can't make this stuff up!) and I failed at taking very many pictures with my camera. We had so much fun, though, playing White Elephant and other fun games and just hanging out with family and friends. We even ended the night with a "Holly Jolly Christmas" performance from Baylee on her fireplace stage. :)

We spent the evening of Christmas Eve at my Nanny and Papa's house enjoying a prime rib dinner with gingerbread cake and brownies for dessert. After we ate, we put on our PJs and opened all our presents from them. Baylee was excited about each gift, but I have to say that her lab coat and pink stethoscope took the cake. She wanted them on right away and immediately started giving everyone check-ups. It was a nice relaxing night, and we headed home on the early side to prep for Santa's arrival!

We got home and put out cookies and milk for Santa and tucked Baylee in to bed. My sisters stayed over and helped us prepare everything for her. I was so excited for her to wake up the next morning to see everything that Santa brought her!

Christmas morning was absolutely magical! Baylee went right for her stocking first, and then dove in to all her presents. Her reactions to everything were priceless! She kept saying "Look what I found!" once she got all the wrapping paper off, and wanted to play with every toy and read every book right then and there. For the last gift of the morning, we took Baylee outside to show her that Santa had set up her very own swing set! I have never seen the girl so excited! She would have played out there in the 32 degree weather all morning if we had let her. Christmas morning with a kid really is the best thing ever! 

 We let Baylee take a nap in the afternoon and then headed to my Dad's house for Christmas dinner. He got her an awesome easel, and she spent the entire time before dinner drawing us chalk pictures. We ate my Dad's famous lasagna, and then made one last stop over to my aunt's house. A bunch of family was there, and we all played Bingo and other games for prizes. It was one of the most fun Christmas nights that I have ever had!

We had our last Christmas event this morning with Brian's family. Baylee loved seeing them and getting to play and open presents with her cousin Adalyn. I can't believe how much the two of them have grown just since last Christmas, and I know they have many more fun Christmases together in their future! 

We spent the rest of our day today relaxing & watching Baylee play with her new toys. I'm so sad that it's over, but I will admit that it will be nice to slow down a little again. That doesn't mean I won't have my tree lights on for a couple more weeks, though. ;)

I hope everyone had a very Merry Christmas!

Until next time! XoXoXo 


Friday Favorites: Christmas Cookies

Friday, December 16, 2016

Last year, I wrote this post with all my favorite traditional Christmas cookie recipes that my family makes every year. We are still having our annual cookie baking sleepover, but for the blog this year, I decided to try out a few new recipes that I could share with you! They turned out great, but Brian and I have each gained a couple pounds eating them because they are so good! :)

Italian Christmas Cookies

Cookie Ingredients:

4 eggs
1 cup of sugar
1/2 cup of butter
2 tsp of vanilla
3 1/2 cup of flour
4 tsp baking powder

Icing Ingredients:

2 cups of powdered sugar
2 tsp vanilla
6-8 tsp water

Cookie Instructions:

1. In a large bowl mix together flour and baking soda. Set aside.
2. Using a standing or hand mixer on low, cream together butter and sugar.
3. Add eggs one at a time, mixing well. Then add vanilla.
4. Add flour mixture 1/4 cup at a time.
5. Put dough in a sealed container or bag and refrigerate for at least 1 hour.
6. Roll the dough on a floured surface in to roughly 6 inch "snakes" about an inch thick.
7. Twist into a spiral and place on a parchment paper covered cookie sheet.
8. Bake at 375 degrees for 8-10 minutes. (The bottom should be lightly browned but the tops should remain light.)
9. Remove cookies to cool on a wire rack. Cookies should cool completely before glazing.

Glaze Instructions:

1. Combine all icing ingredients in a bowl until smooth. You want it to be thick but runny, so add in the water a little at a time until you achieve desired consistency.
2. Dip the tops of the cookies in to the glaze, then return them to the wire rack to allow them to drip. 
3. Top with sprinkles while the glaze is still wet.

Christmas Funfetti Cookies


1 box of Christmas Funfetti cake mix 
1/3 cup vegetable oil
2 eggs
1 cup of Mini M&Ms


1. Add cake mix to a large bowl, then add oil, and eggs.
2. Stir with a spoon until it is thoroughly moist.
3. Shape dough in to 1 inch balls. Place them about 2 inches apart on a parchment paper covered cookie sheet.
4. With the bottom of a glass dipped in flour, flatten cookies to about 1/4 inch thick.
5. Gently press M&Ms on to each cookie.
6. Bake at 350 degrees for 7 minutes. Do not overcook, they will harden as they cool.

*Note* If you can not find the funfetti cake mix, you can use white cake mix and just add in 2 tablespoons of sprinkles! 

Oreo Peppermint Cookies


1 box of white cake mix
1 stick of butter, melted
1 egg
1/2 teaspoon of peppermint extract
1/2 teaspoon of vanilla extract
4 ounces of cream cheese, softened
1 cup of crushed Oreo cookies
1 cup of chopped Hershey Candy Cane Kisses
1/2 cup of dark chocolate chips 


1. Combine cake mix, melted butter, egg, and extracts. Beat with a hand or stand mixer on low until a soft dough forms. 
2. Add cream cheese and beat until combined.
3. Using a spoon, gently add in the kisses, chocolate chips, and then oreos.
4. In a sealed container or bag, refrigerate dough for at least a half hour.
5. Roll the dough in to 2 inch balls.
6. Bake at 350 degrees on a parchment paper covered cookie sheet for 9 minutes. Do not over bake.
7. Let cookies sit on the cookie sheet for 2 more minutes, then gently tap the top of each cookie with a spatula to even out the tops.
8. Place cookie on a wire rack to finish cooling.      


If you get a chance to bake any of these, let me know how they turn out! I think the oreo peppermints are my favorite...they're amazing with a glass of milk! 

Until next time! XoXoXo 



Secondary Infertility & the IVF Debate

Tuesday, December 13, 2016

Last week, I had an appointment with our Reproductive Endocrinologist. It was my final appointment before we have to decide whether or not we want to commit to trying IVF. At our next appointment in a couple weeks, all the money is due and the process will officially begin, and after looking at the calendar that the nurse typed up for me, it's going to go fast.

My brain has been spinning ever since that appointment. I want another baby more than I can explain, but there is an internal debate going on inside me that I can't shake. I struggle between "Let's do this! We could be easily be having another baby in 2017!" and "I can't do this...the money and bodily sacrifice are just too much."

Brian has been the biggest support. He is 100% for trying the IVF out, and continually assures me that I can do this, and that we will figure out the money, because it can't even compare to the joy that expanding our family will bring us. I love my "glass half full" husband, sometimes I wish I could adopt his laid-back way, but I can't help but think of all the "What if's...". 

What if we spend all that money and it doesn't work? What if my body has a horrible reaction to the meds and I can't care for Baylee the way I normally do? What if it does work and now we've added new bills plus another mouth to feed? There is just so much to think about that no one prepares you for. And, as ridiculous as it might sound, my struggle over "the unfairness of it all" isn't helping my situation. It's really hard to accept going through all of this when I know that we have done it naturally on our own once even with all of the odds against us. Oh, baby #2, why must you be so complicated, my love?

But that last sentence right there is why I am 96% sure I will go through with it. Just the thought of "baby #2" having an actual name and face makes it all worth sacrificing.

That being said, I have decided to not blog about the IVF experience until after we know for sure that we are pregnant. I know there are a lot of you in the same boat who were looking forward to reading about the process as we go along, but I thought long and hard about it, and I decided that I don't want to take away from the experience of the could-be pregnancy it's self. I want to be able to surprise my family, friends, and all my lovely readers with a classic pregnancy announcement when we are ready just like we would have with a natural conception. :)

Until then, please continue to pray for us! Your prayers mean so much, and help us more than you could ever know!

Also, if you would like to donate, every little bit helps and we appreciate all of you who have helped us so far! 
The link is here:

Until next time! XoXoXo


Friday Favorites: Christmas Jammies

Friday, December 9, 2016

It's been a while since I did some Friday Favorites over here, so I did some online window shopping and found all my favorite pairs of toddler Christmas pajamas for both boys and girls this year! Baylee has a few of these, and we have been rotating through them daily. There's nothing cuter than a toddler in a pair of cozy Christmas jammies drinking some hot chocolate on a chilly morning. It's been a sight in our house almost daily. :)

As you can see, I am still a sucker for footie pajamas. I think this will be the last winter that Baylee will willingly wear them, so I am getting as many pairs on her as I can. A lot of the choices are very gender neutral (Baylee has the buffalo plaid PJs and the moose footies even though they are sold in the boys section.) which I love because we never know what our "one day" baby #2 will be! Also, almost every pair featured here is on sale so make sure you get them while you can!

Clockwise from left to right. 

Where are your favorite places to shop for Christmas pajamas? Anyone doing matching jammies for the whole fam this year? 

Until next time! XoXoXo 


Today With Bay!

Wednesday, December 7, 2016

7:20 Morning Coffee!


 7:30 Bagel for Breakfast!
When your little sister's best friend works at the best bagel place in So. Cal, you get hooked up!

7:45 Morning Baylee...
Just when I started reading, I hear the girl on her monitor.

7:50 Love her! 

 8:00 Breakfast of champions!

8:15 Crap...
I realize, while feeding Baylee her breakfast, that I forgot to move the damn elf!

8:30 Crisis averted! 
I sent Baylee to play in her room and gave Snowbelle a new spot for today!

9:00 Playing in the toy box!

9:30 Target bound!

9:45 Second happiest place on Earth!

10:00 Seriously contemplate buying this for myself.
Decide not to because guess who would try to eat those berries?

10:45 Home from Target...snack time!

11:00 Stella opens her birthday present.
Today is Miss Stella Lou's 8th birthday, so Baylee and I picked out a gift box for her that had a stuffed gingerbread, a chef hat, and doggie cookie mix!

 11:30 Tacos for lunch!

12:00 Paying it forward.

12:05 We left cookies for our mail man today!

1:00 Nap time!
Let's try this again...


3:00 She's awake!

3:15 Time to play!

4:30 Dinner date!
Brian let me know that he was going to be home late, so I decided to take Baylee on an early dinner date to In-N-Out! 

5:15 Home to bake cookies for the birthday pup!

 6:00 Party time!

 6:30 Brian's home with flowers!
He's seriously the best hubbs!

 7:00 Bath time!

 7:30 Milk and "Mickey's Christmas Carol"

7:45 Cuddles with Daddy until it's time for bed!

Until next time! XoXoXo