Friday, July 29, 2016

Three Years with E

I know I say it with every one of these posts, but time needs to slow down just a little bit. Today E turns 3. Most days it feels like it has been the blink of an eye.

Watching E go from a tiny baby to a full fledged little person is pretty spectacular. It is crazy how much she has changed in such a short time. It seems like just yesterday she was learning to walk and now she is telling me about everything. It is fun to listen to her as she come home from daycare talking about what she learned that day.

It has been fun to watch her grow and her personality develop. E is outgoing, kind, a little stubborn and very friendly. (There are moments when she has a little too much personality, but she is a three-year old.) Watching her make friends has been a fun thing this year. She is super close with a couple of the girls at daycare.

So much personality.

She has so many words and has started telling stories. I don't know how she does it at 3, but there is very little that gets past this kid. E is constantly observing the world and curious about everything. I think this is the root of most of our sleep/nap issues. She is afraid of missing out.

Always examining the world
This summer E has turned into a little fish. Anything with water and she is happy. She has become such a great swimmer this summer. She loves the water so much that she asked for a mermaid tail for her birthday. (I am super excited that I found one to give her.)

My little fish

Outside is still her favorite place to be and it doesn't really matter what she is doing. The park, the playground, riding bikes, playing bubbles...all of it. E is also a complete daredevil. Her fearlessness amazes me and I hope she keeps some of it as she gets older. 

So fierce

Enjoying the waves.

 She enjoys reading books and coloring. Her love for Minnie Mouse is strong. She is also a fan of most of the Disney princesses. Cinderella and Sophia are high on her list. 

The past three years have been amazing. It seems like each year keeps getting more and more fun. I am so blessed to have a happy, healthy, and overall, pretty amazing child.

I am so lucky to share the ride of life with these two!

Wednesday, July 20, 2016

It Doesn't Have to Be Pink

As we approach another birthday, I worry about how much pink E has accumulated. It doesn't help my mama guilt that she has asked for a "pink scooter" for her birthday. Pink is fine, but I want E to know that just because she is a girl, everything doesn't have to be pink.

We have lots of pink clothes.
(This is one of my favorites)

Some of it is my fault. When I found out E was a girl I was super excited. Little girl clothes are super cute and I love big bows. That said, I also tried to be cognizant of how early kids begin to internalize what being a "girl" or "boy" means. I work to make sure E has a variety of toys, but there is still a lot of pink in our house. 

She loves her pink suitcase.
I know I only have so much control. She is influenced by family, teachers, friends and others. We are also very blessed and she receives a lot of gifts and hand-me-downs. It isn't just the clothes that are pink, but the shoes and the blankets and the toys. I try to avoid buying too many "girl" items, but sometimes it happens. (Try shopping with a toddler and not occasionally getting what they want at least occasionally.)

She picked out a pink bracelet.
Pink Ice Cream
(Always a good option, but what about chocolate or vanilla?)

It isn't that pink things are bad. I have to admit that I like pink things (and sparkly things) as well. I want E to know that she can love the pink things, but she can also love getting dirty and play hard. I knew that raising a girl would be hard, but I really didn't know how hard it would be.

Thursday, July 14, 2016

Checking In - 2016 Looking for Balance

We are half-way through 2016, so it is a good time to check in and see how I am doing with my goal for the year. As I discussed in January, instead of setting goals for the year I decided to focus on balance. Half-way through the year, I have to say that I am making progress.

This year has been about saying no more than yes. I can say that it still isn't easy and occasionally, I regret saying no, but as a whole it has lead to less stress. I am working on carefully evaluating the opportunities I am presented with.

Finding balance by letting some things go has been a bit more difficult. My perfectionist nature makes it difficult to buy dessert at the store or to not worry about other things. We have a number of unfinished projects around the house and some days I just want to finish them all...NOW. I know that none of them are make or break and I am working on letting them go.

I still have a pretty strong fear of missing out on something, but I also appreciate the balance I have gained over the past few months. My plan for the rest of the year is to continue to work to have balance and determine what my priorities are going to be going forward.

Wednesday, July 6, 2016

Tea Time at the TeaCupcake Experience

A few weeks ago I had the opportunity to have tea at the TeaCupcake Experience with some ladies from Central Florida Lady Bloggers. This cute little shop is located downtown just a few blocks from Lake Eola.

When I first walked in, I was amazed by the cuteness of this little shop. The shop is located in a newish building and not what I was expecting. They have done a great job making it cozy and I love the gold and white color scheme.

The owners of this shop are very sweet and greeted us and shared their story. I love that they combine their heritage with the traditional tea experience. It gives it a unique twist on the traditional tea.

We had the afternoon tea experience. This included tea sandwiches (the tomato basil ones were amazing), various pastries, Devonshire Cream & preserves, loose leaf tea and a cupcake. I was a big fan of the scones and the guava filled pastries (my favorite). Everything was yummy and it would be a great afternoon treat.

The TeaCupcake was a lot of fun. I can't wait to take E to tea. You should go if you are in the area.  

(Disclosure: I received a free afternoon tea as part of the Central Florida Lady Blogger event, but all opinions are my own.)