Pepper Express: November 2014

Sunday, November 30, 2014

10 Year High School Reunion!

There was a point when I decided I didn't want to go. Why is it soo nerve wracking to make that decision. I knew some of my long time friends would be there. And I knew I would feel comfortable being in my home town. But I feel as if I am suffering from some sort of postpartum in which I am beyond conscious about my body. I don't fit into my maternity clothes anymore and I was able to jump into my pre pregnancy jeans just last month. But I still feel a little shy. When I made my decision to wear a LBD to the reunion, I didn't realize that it was going to rain that night. So before I left I threw on some tights and ankle boots just in case there was a chill... you can never go wrong with a LBD. On the drive to my hometown of Lodi, CA (where I was born and raised) I was anxious but my husband reassured me that everything was going to go great. 
Once we made our donations for our next reunion I started seeing people I knew and felt at home. One of my best friends Sandi is an official extrovert and I decided to hang out with her all night. She is a true friend and one of the most out going people that I know. I on the other hand am an introvert all the way. My husband and I started the night at the bar and then mingled around until I found my fellow band members.
Yes I was considered a band geek. But technically I was only in the Color Guard. I played piano throughout high school but it was through an independent teacher. (Check out that wrong date on that developed picture ^^^hehe)
I am sad that a few of my long time friends didn't make it. But there will always be 2024?

Friday, November 28, 2014

Dear Santa,

Every year I ask my little ones to write a christmas list. That list is usually comprised of Laptops and iPads. So here is my Christmas Wishlist; even though a few items are out of budget... I'm just keeping my fingers crossed!
Dear Santa

Thursday, November 27, 2014

Happy Thanksgiving

 I wanted a really good photo to post today because I wanted to tell my family how thankful I am for them. And while I am sifting through our iphoto library I realized that I have not posted any of our photos from our US Road Trip in June! There was a point after going through over 5,000 photos that I know I specifically put them on the back burner. Over a six week period we had taken over 5k photos… that sounds insane but its true. I didn’t get through half of them I just decided on a few good ones and left it at that.

I am grateful for this year that has been given to me. As we welcomed Solin into this world we also have Carlie and Dean growing into full blown teenagers. Attitude and all. I am thankful that each of them have their own character. And each of our babies are going through their own obstacles.
Dean has made us proud by joining the basketball team. All of his hardwork and dedication is paying off. He still comes home after practice with full enthusiasm to make his baby sister giggle and scream with laughter. He has a generous heart who has found success in playing the guitar. We love to make requests and we love to sing along. He is a blessing in my life and our oldest. Whatever you do and whatever you accomplish you know how to do it in your own style. I am thankful to have Dean in my life to teach me the trials and tribulations of being a parent to a teenager.
Carlie is a goal achiever who knows the line to success and she has decided to follow in the steps of her grandmother and barrel race on the weekends. While she received a new german shepherd puppy in which she has decided to train. She is the only dog trainer in the youth division but she has a wonderful coach who knows what she is doing. There are times in my day when I am grateful for Carlie. Because being a new mom, half the time I feel I could go insane. But Carlie is there by my side willing to help in every way.
Solin is fully mobile now. And her enthusiasm to get places is incredible. I will place her in the living room and within two minutes she is trying to escape out the front door. Her favorite escapade is to crawl after the cat. I don’t understand why she loves that furry feline but she will chase after Misty until she is tired. I am thankful that she keeps me on my toes!

Everyone is at a new stage in their life and our life has changed tremendously this year. I am just thankful that our family is open to adjustment and a growing family. The year is ending and the holidays only make me feel more love from our surrounding family members. I am thankful for each and everyone of you.
Hopefully you dont mind that I just spilled a bunch of random photos on you

Tuesday, November 25, 2014

Stupid Proverb

Today I cried. I spend about an hour of my day pumping. Expressing milk for my seven month old. I am at the point where I am trying to exclusively pump because my baby girl has four gruesome mean teeth. My milk supply is flourishing and I am very proud of my breastfeeding success. At first breast feeding was one of the hardest things I could possibly think of. I felt the most excruciating pain the first six weeks. Once I visited a lactation consultant and she informed me that my baby was not latching correctly, everything was fantastic after that. Breast feeding has become second nature to me and my baby. During the day she drinks the expressed milk and my breast milk inventory is usually stocked up. She is growing rapidly and eating more than I can supply at this time. When I take a break at work to pump, I usually am able to express 5-6 oz at a time. I then keep the milk in my insulated carrier and put the milk in the refrigerator. When I get home I transport the precious cargo from the lunch pail to my home refrigerator and in that moment is when the 12 oz of breastmilk splat on the ground. In that instant it was a lose-lose situation. While I am cleaning up the useless milk; tears are coming down my face and I remember that stupid proverb “it’s no use in crying over spilt milk.” Well guess what I am going to cry about it. Because sometimes you need a good cry. And this is just unfair!

*** I feel much better now that I was able to vent.

Monday, November 24, 2014

Brunch with our Cousins

A couple years ago I was invited to a holiday brunch with my husband’s cousins. I felt as if I was an official family member and every year since we have set a family tradition of going out to brunch before the holidays begin. My sister in laws join us and we had all three of his cousins there too! This year we decided to invite Carlie along as her coming of age party, because that little lady will be thirteen on Saturday! And Solin joined because it was a unanimous vote to bring her. This year we chose to have brunch at The Dancing Fox in Lodi.
I recommended The Dancing Fox because my best friend had her bridal shower there last May. And I had read that every Sunday The Dancing Fox hosts a delicious BRUNCH
Every detail is set in such a unique way. There is an atmosphere that comes along with The Dancing Fox. I felt as if I had walked back in time into and old storybook. Where the candles were lit and the tapestries were placed along the rugged brick walls.
 There was an omelette station and delicious mimosa to go along with the savory linguica.
Everyone was in good spirits and the place was packed!
Another tradition is to take a group photo before any of us leave!
(The bread pudding was my favorite)
After brunch was over we decided to take a stroll along School St. in Downtown Lodi. 
 If you ever get a chance to visit Downtown Lodi; The School Street Bistro is delicious for dinner!
Strolling in downtown isn't complete with out some window shopping!
(This ornament was my fav)
My little Solin is always such a happy baby!
And my little Carlie Rae is a wonderful photographer. I am thankful for her everyday!
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