Sleep Training

Happy Friday! Hope everyone’s week was amazing. So last week I posted about Liam’s sleep and how hard it was for me. Well a friend of mine read my post and shared with me her experience.

She explained that what she did was move her sons crib next to her bed. When he would start to cry she would put her arm in there to let him know she was near. He would cry but she would not pick him up. She would just leave her arm until he fell back asleep. She stated this made her feel like she wasn’t abandoning him and helped him learn he wasn’t going to be picked up. She eventually moved his crib back to his room and he began sleeping through the night without interventions from her.

I had tried the cry it out method and it was traumatic for me and Liam and I will not do that ever again. It didn’t work and it was horrible for me. So I thought I would give her method a try. I didn’t have the option to move his crib next to mine so I would just have to sit next to his crib.

We started last Friday night. He started crying around 3am. I went into his room let him know I was there and gave him my hand. I sat next to his crib while he cried for maybe five minutes. I could sense he was still awake but left my hand for a total of 15 minutes probably. I slowly snuck my hand out. He was still awake but stayed quiet until about 3:30am. I went back in and gave him my hand. I stayed a little longer and then snuck out. He finally fell asleep around 4:15 and didn’t get back up until after 6am.

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The next night he was up around 3:30am (improvement from the night before) and I stayed for about 15 minutes and then left. He fell asleep and I didn’t need to go back in. He again slept until after 6am.

Sunday night he slept until 4:00am. Another improvement! This time I only had to stay in there about 5 minutes and slept until after 6am. Monday night he slept until 4:30am and I was in and out. He again slept until after 6am.

That was it! Tuesday night, Wednesday night and last night he slept through the night! That is 3 nights of this mama not getting out of bed until my alarm goes off. My hope is that he continues to sleep through the night but I am so happy with the results so far.

Have a great weekend!!

Weekend #7

Happy Monday! I hope everyone enjoyed their weekend!

FRIDAY

Joe and his siblings all have birthdays within weeks of each other so to celebrate their parents do a birthday dinner with prime rib and lobster.

It was a wonderful meal. Joe’s mom is such a great hostess. The place settings and flowers were so pretty and perfect!

The cousins had fun seeing each other. And sitting on their new bunk bed for sleepovers at grandma and grandpa’s house.

We put Liam to bed in the pack and play there. We were a little nervous because last time didn’t go very well. This time he did great. He slept through the transition to car seat and transition to crib. It was perfect.

SATURDAY

Saturday mornings are always family mornings. It’s fun waking up and spending time as a family. Liam always makes me and Joe smile and laugh. He has such a personality now and is so silly.

I decided to go for my third run of the year. I wanted to burn off that meal from Friday and Saturdays seem to be good run mornings for me. I went my farthest and fastest so far. It feels good to get out there and run, even though I had to continue encouraging myself with each step.

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After my run, Liam took a great nap and Joe was working on a deer stand with his dad and brother in law Joel. So I decided to finish the first season of Fuller House on Netflix. I loved it! It’s super cheesy but so funny. I think my favorite personalities so far are DJ and Max. Can’t wait for season 2!

Liam and I made a quick visit to our neighbors house. Their son is almost 4 months and we plan on him and Liam being the best of friends. Should be interesting watching them grow together. He is such a cutie!

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Joe and I decided to make a Costco run to get some groceries and specifically chicken. We love the chicken from there. We dropped Liam off at my parents so he didn’t have to come with.

The Blackhawks played so after Liam went down I joined Joe watching that. I must have been really tired though because I fell asleep watching. Off to bed I went. Blackhawks did win though!

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SUNDAY

It was super rainy all day. Liam and I stayed home all day. We just spent time playing with all his different toys. It’s hard when it’s rainy and we can’t get outside for even a few minutes but we made it work. Liam rolls all over the place now and gets up on his hands and knees. He will be crawling before we know it. Joe ran a few errands but was home most of the day with us.

Liam did get some short visits from his grandpa in the morning and this his grandma later in the morning too.

Liam was a little fussy in the evening so we decided to let him play in the bath tub. He loves it so much. This may become part of our regular routine. Look at that hair (insert crying laughing emoji)!

Other than that we had a relaxing Sunday!

FAVORITES

Have a great week!

As I’m rocking my baby

As I’m rocking my baby to sleep at 2am a rush of emotions brings tears to my eyes.

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Liam started out as a really good sleeper. Although he rarely (maybe a total of 3 times) slept through the night it was super easy to get him back to sleep. Around 4 months his sleep patterns began to change. Around 6 months they took a turn for the worse. He wakes up screaming crying and cannot soothe himself back to sleep. He demands to be rocked and I can’t stand letting him cry. I will let him fuss and cry a little and he can at times get himself back to sleep but when he is screaming there is no option (in my opinion) but to intervene and soothe my sweet boy.

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In the past month Liam has woke up screaming several times throughout the night. This isn’t every night but maybe 5 out of 7 nights a week. It usually starts around 11pm and then 2am and then 4am and maybe even 5am. Almost instantly once he is picked up he calms down and falls back asleep as I rock him. I usually rock him for several minutes once he is asleep. Then as I lay him down so carefully in his crib, he wakes up and begins screaming again. I try again. Sometimes it works and other times I am just too exhausted to continue with this cycle of crying, rocking, and then crying again. He will end up in bed with me and my husband so that I can actually get some sleep. He sleeps well at that point but that is a last resort option for me. I prefer not to have him in bed with us.

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A big part of me is exhausted and wishing I could be sleeping. I can’t wait for Liam to start sleeping through the night. The thought of 6 solid hours of sleep is a dream in the far off distance lately.

The other part of me really cherishes the quiet moments as he is sleeping in my arms with his little (but so big) body wrapped around mine. He is snuggled into me and looks so peaceful and comfortable. I know these days are limited and I try to remind myself to appreciate this time. It already seems like he is growing way to fast.

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I often try to remind myself that this is not forever. That it is a phase and he will eventually grow out of it. This is encouraging and heart breaking at the same time. I want my baby to always want cuddles from his mom. Those moments of bonding in the middle of the night are so special to me. It’s encouraging to know that one day I will be able to sleep a little bit more and maybe actually feel rested again.

The most important thing to remind myself is to be grateful that sleep is our biggest problem. I thank the Lord every day for a happy and healthy baby.

Any suggestions or advice are appreciated! Happy Friday and enjoy the weekend!

Getting pregnant

I didn’t get a chance to continue with my throwback Thursday posts last week since we were on vacation but I’m back at it.

Joe and I knew we wanted to try having a baby as soon as we were married. We both love kids and really love our nieces and nephews. We were ready to add to our family and did not see the need to wait.

I have an app on my phone called my days that I would use to track my menstrual cycle including ovulation. This was perfect for trying to have a baby. Or so I thought.

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The first month went by and I couldn’t wait to take a test. It was negative. A rush of disappointment surfaced. I couldn’t believe it. I thought it would be so easy. I hadn’t been on any birth control for years and thought it would happen so quickly. I didn’t let it get to me too much though. It was only one month and we will just have to try again.

I was super excited to take a test again. I felt like it had worked his time. It had to have worked I thought. The test was negative again. I know it takes people months and sometimes years to get pregnant but with all the unplanned pregnancies and how they preach protection in school I thought it would be easy. In my mind I was thinking “no condom=pregnant!” This was not the case.

I had heard of people using ovulation tests to get pregnant so I thought I would give that a try. What I came to learn was that my app was wrong. It had me ovulating about 3 days before I was actually ovulating. Our timing was all off. So this time we were hopeful we were pregnant because we actually had sex when I was ovulating rather than before.

It worked! I was pregnant! I am so thankful that it was a matter of timing rather than something else. I am also thankful that it only took a few months of trying to conceive. It is always important to remember to be patient and everything happens for a reason.

Washington and weekend #6

Be prepared for a super long post with lots of pictures! We had a very busy, fun, and exciting end of the week and weekend.

We had the best time visiting our friends in Seattle. They were such wonderful hosts and we appreciated all the time we were able to spend with them and all the things we were able to do.

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THURSDAY

Our flight left at 7am and landed at 8:40am. We gained 2 hours. Needless to say, we knew Liam’s schedule would be thrown off. However he really did great! And his first flight was a breeze. He slept for a little over an hour and played the rest of the time. We were lucky that our flight wasn’t full and asked for an empty seat so we had some extra space for Liam to play. Liam got his first pair of wings for his first flight. The flight attendants LOVED him!

When we arrived in Seattle we first picked up our rental car and then met Chelby and DJ. Tyler was working so we didn’t get to see him until the evening. Once we met up with Chelby and DJ we dropped off their car and headed to Pike’s Place Market.

We walked around the market and had a few treats. Joe had some Salmon chowder that he said was really good. He and Chelby shared a crab roll. I’m not a huge seafood fan but Joe really liked it.

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We also watched the fish market workers toss a big fish! It was so great to see. Then we headed to the gum wall. I even added my own gum to the wall (kind of gross but so cool).

After the market we decided to go to Snoqualmie Falls. It was so beautiful. It wasn’t a long walk at all so the kids were content and the waterfall was so pretty.

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Then we decided to hang out and cook dinner at Tyler and Chelby’s house. It was a long day for us with travel and site seeing so it was good to relax in the evening. Joe grilled up some burgers that were done just in time for Tyler to get home. We watched the Minnesota Wild hockey game and relaxed. It was a great way to end our first day.

FRIDAY

It’s Joe’s birthday! He didn’t really want to do anything specific other than eat some seafood.

We started the morning off with some breakfast sandwiches made by Chelby and and ice cream coffee (the coffee is sweetened with ice cream — brilliant!).

Our first trip of the day was to the Navy base. We drove around to see different spots on the base where Tyler and Chelby spent their time. It was cool to see that part of their lives. Then we tried to get close to some ships but were stopped before we got too close. It was still so cool to see how massive the carriers are.

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After that we went to Poulsbo. It is a cute little German town. We took some pictures by the water and the cute gazebo they had there. The boys played in the grass a little. Also Liam used a “big boy” stroller for the first time and it was so cute! He had his little legs swinging.  We ate at a restaurant by the water and we all had fish and chips (Chelby and I subbed in salads for the chips). Ty and Joe had mussels as an appetizer. It was a really good meal and Joe got the seafood he wanted.

We decided to do a steak dinner at the house for Joe’s birthday. The Chicago Blackhawks played too so he wanted to watch the game. We spent another relaxing evening at the house and had a really delicious meal.

SATURDAY

We started the morning off with some scrambled eggs cooked by Ty and some packing. We wanted to have all our things packed because we weren’t going back to their house and had a busy day planned.

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First we took the ferry and got a good view of Mount Rainier. It was a little cloudy but still beautiful. It is incredible how big it is! Such a beautiful site.

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For lunch we went to Bob’s burgers and had some greasy food. It was super yummy of course.

Then we headed to the tulip festival. There were so many tulips. It was such a beautiful site to see. They have the tulip fields and then also the tulip gardens where they have all different kinds and colors of tulips.

I ended up packing a shirt for Liam that DJ also had so they were matching and it was completely adorable. We were able to get so many cute pictures.

After the tulip fields we had a long drive and then it was time to say goodbye. We found ourselves wishing for just another day to hang out and explore. We had such a good time. DJ even reached for Joe as we were leaving which melted both of our hearts.

We then headed to our hotel by the airport. We stayed at a hotel because again we had a really early flight. It was interesting putting Liam to bed in a hotel. They gave us a pack and play and he actually ended up sleeping pretty good. It just took him a while to actually fall asleep.

SUNDAY

Our flight was scheduled to leave at 6:50am. We thought we gave ourselves plenty of time to get ready and get to the airport but we ended up getting there just in time for us to board. This flight was booked so we weren’t able to get an extra seat. It ended up being okay though because Liam slept for 2 hours of the flight. Again, he was so great on the plane. Once we landed people commented that they didn’t even know we had a baby on the plane and that he was such a good traveler. I am so thankful for how good he was on both his flights.

My mom and nephew Judah picked us up from the airport. We stopped at Jersey Mike’s for lunch and then headed to my parents’ house. It was a beautiful day so we stayed there for a little bit so Liam could try the swing for the first time. He loved it.

Then we headed home and just relaxed for the rest of the evening. We didn’t even unpack (I’m dreading it).

We couldn’t have asked for a better first family vacation. We can’t wait to visit Tyler, Chelby and DJ at their new home in Portland!

 

Packing for our first family vacation

We are going to Seattle tomorrow morning to visit our friends. We are very excited to be going, but packing is always a struggle.

Thankfully our friends have a lot of the “extra things” we would like to bring but now don’t need to. For example, hair straightener, blow dryer, etc. So that is nice. They also have a 1 year old so they have baby items as well. We don’t need to bring Liam’s pack and play, baby food, spoons, etc.

For me and Joe we just need to pack our necessities/toiletries and clothes. We will probably pack for all types of weather so that doesn’t make it easy.

Packing for a baby is tough work! I am packing about 1 extra of everything in the event we have a blowout or some kind of mess. We will be gone from Thursday-Sunday morning so this is what I am packing:

  • diapers (I decided 35 regular and 4 sleep diapers-probably too much)
  • Wipes
  • 4 long sleeve onesies
  • 4 t-shirt onesies
  • 5 pants
  • 2 nice outfits
  • 4 pairs of socks
  • robeez shoes
  • 4 pairs of pajamas
  • jean jacket
  • warmer jacket with hood
  • 5 bibs (food and drool)
  • swaddle blankets -one little and one big
  • soft blanket for the plane and stroller
  • infant car seat
  • stroller
  • ergo baby carrier

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We are packing our backpack diaper bag rather than my purse diaper bag. We think this will be easier for the plane and travelling in general. In my diaper bag you will find:

  • diapers
  • wipes
  • a spare outfit in a ziploc bag (in case of blowout on the plane or in public)
  • baby toys
  • swaddle blanket (small and big)
  • soft blanket for plane and stroller
  • pacifier (wubbanub)
  • baby food/spoon/bib for Liam’s breakfast
  • changing pad
  • face and hand wipes
  • toy and table wipes

I always worry about having everything and always overpack. But I would rather be safe than sorry.

I will have an update on our vacation and traveling with a baby when we return!

I hope everyone has a good rest of the week and a great weekend!

The weekend #5

I hope everyone had a great weekend! Ours was busy like it always is!

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FRIDAY

Again, Joe and I both worked on Friday. When we got home we decided to have a relaxing evening. Joe grilled burgers while I played with Liam. Then after Liam was down we watched How I Met Your Mother before calling it a night. We are almost done with the series!

SATURDAY

Liam decided to get up pretty early Saturday morning so I brought him into bed with me thinking we would just hang and then eventually get up. Well he ended up falling back asleep! So me and him snuck in an extra hour of sleep.

Then we went to my aunt’s to pick up the blankets she sewed for Liam. Liam loves his Aden and Anais swaddle blankets and sucks on them to fall asleep. They are quite large and now that Liam rolls all over I am not as comfortable putting him to bed with that big blanket. She cut the blanket into 4 and now they are the perfect size for Liam to sleep with.

In the afternoon we celebrated Joe’s birthday. We will be in Seattle for his birthday so we celebrated early. My grandma made banana cream pie (Joe’s favorite) and Joe’s sister Erin made an apple pie. My mom also made cupcakes for the kids. All of it was so yummy! And if you read my sweet tooth post you know it was a cheat day for me and I went hard! I ate so much pie my tummy hurt. Back to no sweets again and not sad about it.

It was fun to spend time with both of our families. It’s always fun to get both sides together and usually comes with lots of laughter.

Joe had a “boys night” so I decided to binge watch Fuller House.

SUNDAY

Liam was up and ready to play by 6am so me and him spent some time together while Joe slept in (boys night was tough on him). When Joe got up him and Liam hung out on the couch together and watch some hockey highlights. They are adorable!

I decided after all the pie I ate that I needed to exercise in the morning. I thought I would try running. I haven’t ran since before I was pregnant so I knew it would be tough but good. I didn’t run far or fast but I ran and it felt good!

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I had a return to make and Joe and I wanted new sunglasses so we went shopping. First we went to Olive Garden for lunch and then Victoria secret for my return and then sunglass hut for our new shades.

Joe’s parents invited us over for dinner. It was super yummy! It is always nice to spend quality time with them and Liam gets lots of love and attention too. His Grandpa is pretty funny but Liam isn’t always so sure.

Again, we had a wonderful weekend and are looking forward to our next weekend in Seattle!

Favorites:

  • Grandma’s banana cream pie
  • Time with family
  • New sunglasses
  • Somewhere on a beach-Dierks Bentley
  • Chicken gnocchi soup from Olive Garden
  • Pineapple
  • Liam’s curiosity
  • Happier podcast by Gretchen Rubin

Liam is 7 months old

My sweet little Liam turned 7 months old today. It is hard to believe how quickly he is growing!

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Liam started eating baby food in the past month. He loves it! He eats everything and he eats so good. I feel so blessed to have a good eater. We started with eating just one time a day which quickly progressed to two times a day and now he is eating three times a day. He lets you know when he is ready to eat and he is super interested in foods Joe and I eat. He may have been ready for food before I was ready to give it to him.

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Liam has mastered rolling. He rolls all over the place. He is able to turn and roll and squirm in the direction he wants to go. He is working on getting up onto his knees. He occasionally does this but doesn’t hold it very long. I may have a crawler before long!

Liam is also good at grasping toys. He can grab the toy he wants and can pass it from hand to hand. He is also getting quite grabby with his feet!

Liam has learned that “bang bang bang” or “patty patty patty” (as in patty-cake) means to bang his hand on the surface in front of him. He enjoys doing this very much.

Sleep is still a work in progress. He has kept his bedtime of 7pm. He is ready for bed at this time and he lets you know it. Some nights he sleeps great and others terrible. He will sometimes sleep until 3 or 4 and then he wants to eat and then will sleep until about 6-6:30. Other nights he is up at 11 and 12 and 2 and 4 and 5. It’s exhausting. We have tried dream feeding before I go to bed to see if he will sleep until 6 ish without eating but didn’t have success. So we decided not to dream feed and continue with a 3 or 4am feeding until he is ready to cut that feeding out. He is also teething and this likely plays a roll in his restlessness some nights. We have two wubbanubs and he likes them but he really likes sucking on his blanket. Regardless of how he sleeps at night, he sure does wake up happy!

Liam is teething but no teeth yet. Just lots and lots of drool. He is usually wearing a drool bib otherwise his shirt gets soaked.

Liam is able to sit on his own for a long stretch of time. He still tips over every now and then but not all that often anymore.

Liam is super observant. He is easily distracted and does not miss a thing. He is the most curious baby and needs to know everything that is going on around him. Because of this, nursing can be a challenge. We now have to nurse in a low stimulation environment so that he eats a good meal.

Favorites:

  • Being naked/diaper only
  • Aden and anais swaddle blankets
  • Sophie the giraffe
  • A pair of maracas my parents got him from Puerto Rico
  • Almost any fruit ( he tolerates vegetables)
  • Jumping
  • Sitting up on his own
  • Being slightly scared/startled-turning around quickly and saying boo
  • Bath time
  • Marley

Dislikes:

  •  When he can’t see you
  • Getting his face/nose wiped
  • Avocado
  • Waiting for his food to be prepared
  • Too much of the same activity

The Honeymoon

Continuing with my throwback Thursday series: my honeymoon. We went to Cozumel and it was amazing!

Our bank accounts were running a little dry after the expense of the wedding so planning a vacation had our minds spinning. We knew we wanted to honeymoon right after the wedding but we weren’t sure how. Well it turns out I can teach Zumba at certain resorts and get an extremely discounted 7 day stay. So that is what we did (so worth it and highly recommended if you are Zumba certified).

Joe and I left for our honeymoon the morning after our wedding. We left very early and only had a couple hours (at most) of sleep. It didn’t matter. We were so excited about being married and being on vacation that sleep wasn’t an issue. (Picture below shows our tired but excited faces —insert crying laughing emoji)

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Our first day was basically a full day of travel. We flew into Cancun so we had to travel to the ferry and then ride the ferry to Cozumel and take a taxi to our resort –Secrets Aura Cozumel. We were able to make it for the pretty sunset though and then just crashed for the night after an exhausting few days of rehearsal dinner, wedding, and travel.

The resort was beautiful! I had never been to an all inclusive resort before and it was amazing. It was really nice because the resort wasn’t super busy either due to the time of the year we were traveling.

The first day we were there I had to meet with the activities director for teaching Zumba. He was so nice and so flexible. I had to teach one 30 minute class in the morning during the week. So since I met with him on Monday, I only had to teach Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday, and Friday morning and then he told me I could have Saturday off. I was so glad they were so easy to work with and understanding and just all around awesome!

Our days usually started the same each morning. Wake up, have some coffee, and get ready to teach Zumba. I would teach and Joe would watch/lounge and read a book. Then we would go have breakfast and do whatever we wanted the rest of the day. We really made it an effort to have no plans and no expectations on our vacation and it worked really well for us. Every day was amazing regardless of what we did.

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There was a french restaurant at the resort that we loved and went to on the evenings it was open. There was a water slide at our resort. It was surprisingly really fun even though it was small. We had some fun taking the pool mats (against the rules—we are rebels haha) and going down the slide.

We did register for some things at our resort for our wedding showers and both of our parents bought us some really nice items. What happens is it gives a money credit to your account so you can end up using it however you would like. We ended up using our credits for a couple’s massage and a sunset dinner on the pier (which we liked so much we did twice). The dinner was so romantic and we came back to a room filled with flower petals and candles.

We also used some of our credit to do a surf and turf pirate cruise. We went downtown Cozumel, walked around a little bit, and then went on the cruise. It was a lot of fun and great entertainment. The resort also had nightly entertainment. There was always something we could do (for free) at the resort which was nice. We liked having options.

We were even able to watch the Packer/Viking football game on the beach! In Mexico! How awesome is that?? (Photo below of the big screen they put up to play the game –it was really dark out when the game was on)

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We did free snorkeling at the resort and then decided to go out snorkeling. We were told that Cozumel has great reefs for snorkeling so we knew that was something we had to do. Well I made the mistake of looking out the glass on the bottom of our boat most of the ride to our destination making me feel a little ill. While snorkeling it was really wavy and I don’t like listening to my own breathing (makes me feel claustrophobic). I began to feel even more ill. I snorkeled at all of our destinations but I cut the last one short. I felt super ill and ended up having to rest the whole ride back to our resort. Eventually I felt better though and it was really cool to see all the sea life.

Overall we mostly enjoyed each other’s company. We spent a lot of time by the pool and in the pool. We met a few other couples that were a lot of fun. The staff was incredible and the resort was great. It was really the most amazing vacation and we cannot wait to go back!

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Did you go on a honeymoon? If so did you go right after your wedding or wait? Where did you go?

 

 

 

 

 

Sweet tooth update

Sorry I didn’t post yesterday, I’ve been sick and was unable to get anything written.

I wanted to update you all on my no sweets adventure. It has been one week today and let me tell you it was a tough one. The first 3 days were actually the hardest but since then it hasn’t been so bad.

Joe and I don’t keep sweets in the house so that helps a lot. When I did find myself craving something sweet (usually after dinner) I was advised by Molly to try eating some fruit. We happened to have some kiwi in the fridge and that was the ticket! Kiwi is so sweet and juicy. It quenched my craving.

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I was tempted by cupcakes and cheesecake over the weekend but I was able to say no because I knew I would have to tell Molly and my friend Jenna and they are both holding me accountable to the goal.

I have a cheat day coming up Saturday for Joe’s birthday and then next weekend for our vacation to Seattle. I’m feeling committed to this goal which makes it easier to follow through.

I will update again once April is over to let you know how it went and if I commit to another month.