Tuesday, May 31, 2011


Yesterday Max had his first boating day of the season.  I was the typical overprotected mom {sunscreen, life-jacket, hat, water...} but even with that Max had a great time.  I brought my new camera but had forgotten to charge the batteries so unfortunately I had to use my iPhone for pics.

We docked at 3 foot bay for a while to hang out with some friends and listen to music and so Max had some time to sit and play with his toys.  He had plenty of sunscreen on but to make sure he didn't overheat or burn we made him a little towel shade and he had a blast!
I swear he's trying to smile in this pic :)
Hat fell down over his eyes.

Smiling with his eyes closed

Playing under his towel shade.  Calling chicks with his baby cell phone

Such a fun day he passed out in the car!

Sunday, May 29, 2011

Nikon P500... New Camera!

I wanted a new camera for my birthday.  I mostly have been using my iPhone to document Max's first year of life and realized after starting my blog that I really needed something that took better quality photos.  After looking around and asking friends for advice I was a little stumped.  Some suggested I go the DSLR route and some suggested I do a bridge super-zoom camera.  I'm not that great at taking pictures and although I am pretty good at electronics I'm not one to figure out a lot of different settings prior to using something.  What I really wanted was something I could pull out quickly in order to grab a shot but also work on my technique a little bit more than what I could do with a simple point and shoot.

In the end I decided the Nikon P500 was the camera for me.  Luke purchased it for my birthday and I'm in love.  The auto setting lets me take quick shots of Max being silly and I'm also hoping to learn more of the manual settings for the future.

Here are some of my first pictures taken with my camera.  I also doctored them up on picnik {super fun, you must try}.

Even though Max has an ear infection he was a pretty happy subject.

Friday, May 27, 2011

Reminiscing New Beginnings

The other morning I was discussing high school graduation parties with one of my coworkers as her daughter is graduating in a week.  It got me thinking back to my high school graduation party 10 years ago.  

My coworkers daughter posted her grad party invite on facebook and 400+ people RSVPd!  Are ya kidding me?  Wow have times changed.  I can remember sending out my plain grad party invites with one of my wallet size graduation photos stuck in it.  I mailed them or handed them out at school and can't even remember how many people attended.

What I visualize from my party is that it was a nice Saturday in June, I hated what I chose to wear but didn't have enough time to change, there was a kiddie pool filled with soda in the driveway along with folding chairs for guests, my cousin Katy made the trip up to Duluth to attend, my boyfriend at the time sat in the garage giving people dirty looks and my friends that attended where scared off by him… all in all, not the most memorable event.

What I do feel when I think of my graduation party is the excitement that was palpable that day.  Summer was coming and I was about to embark on a new chapter in my life… COLLEGE.  Oh and what fun college was!  If only I could go back to that day in the garage when the sun was shining and I knew my future was bright… {well other than needing to ditch my boyfriend, that was a little bit of a downer, but other than that}

Ok so I didn't have a pic of my own graduation so here is one of my brothers college graduation a few years ago.  This was in St. Paul, MN and it was the hottest day EVER!  Bad decision to wear black leggings to an outdoor ceremony!

Thursday, May 26, 2011

The Hockey Wife Life

It seems that there are a lot of blogs out there written by hockey wives in order to help support other hockey wives. I started to wonder if living the hockey life is truly that difficult or if maybe that's just who I'm surrounded by and so happen to come across their blogs.

Currently I would consider myself a less than part-time hockey wife.  I've been lucky enough to have the best of both worlds.  Even when my husband was playing full time I was able to keep my job and therefore have my roots grounded somewhere.  The past two years my husband has only been going off to play the end of the season and playoffs so 1-2 months out of the year he's gone and I just stay at home and continue working.

My husband will probably chastise me for writing this but here are some of the things that I consider could be difficult being a full-time hockey wife.

1. Most are away from their friends and families for the entire season.
2. You are FORCED to become friends with the other wives and girlfriends even if they aren't your "cup of tea"
3. For some reason I have noticed a level of competition between wives.  Certain teams are worse than others.
4. The fans can be a little overwhelming even though they mean well.
5. The life usually consists of late night games and partying.
6. Some road trips can last up to 2 weeks and so you are left alone in a strange city with friends you "sort of" like without your true friends and family.
7. Groupies... enough said
8. You dread the day that your husband/boyfriend comes home from practice and tells you that he has just been traded and you need to pack up your entire home by the end of the day and drive cross country so that he can practice with his new team the next day.  Therefore, having to rush around to all the friends that you DO like crying and saying goodbye only to show up to a team the next day as the "new wife/girlfriend" that everyone ignores.
9. Unless you are lucky enough to play with the same team for a few years in a row you struggle to find a "real" job that will hire you for only 7 months and so end up waitressing, bartending, working in a coffee shop or a retail store.... if you even work at all.
10. When your husband/boyfriend has a bad game... you have a bad game.

I LOVE hockey and grew up loving it and was lucky enough that the year I went with Luke to play I had the most amazing wives and girlfriends on the team.  Some of them are still great friends of mine and I love them dearly.  Others are not so lucky and I totally feel for them.  I do have to add that there are some wonderful things to being a hockey wife/girlfriend.

1. I've been able to travel to some amazing cities such as Manchester, England and Paris, France.
2. I've met some awesome women whom I love to pieces and still keep in touch with. {Looking forward to seeing Ashley, Chad and baby Cayne this weekend!}
3. I've been able to watch lots of hockey... which can be good and bad depending on the day.
4. I've been treated as a VIP at games and never had to pay to park or attend
5. Some teams have great connections with local businesses and so offer wives discounted services.
6. There is a weird connection between hockey wives and girlfriends... you are probably going to run into someone on your new team that played with someone from your old team and therefore you all three now know each other.  Currently, I can think of many of these that I have!

In the end, like anything, there are good and bad things about the hockey wife world.  I'm just happy to be a part of it. {some days} :)
1st Year, Charlotte, North Caroline Wives/Girlfriends 
2nd Year, Quad Cities of Iowa and Illinois Wives/Girlfriends
Luke and I in front of the Louvre in Paris
Eiffel Tower
View from the Eiffel Tower
Notre Dame
Champs Elysees, Paris on New Years Eve
3rd Year, The street Luke lived on in Manchester, England
4th Year, Ugly sweater party in Muskegon, Michigan
Muskegon Wives/Girlfriends

Year 5, The car after we hit a deer on our way to Tulsa, Oklahoma {sorry it's a little morbid, it's the only picture I have}

Year 6, Odessa, Texas {no photos}

Wednesday, May 25, 2011

Scenic Meeting and Birthday aftermath

I started off this morning with a meeting at the Best Western Inn on The Park in downtown Madison.  Even though it is a gloomy day, the view from the meeting room we were in was so breathtaking I had to sneak a few snapshots with my iPhone.
Lake Monona
Madison Capitol Building
Capitol Square
On another note, my birthday dinner last night was fabulous.  Luke and Max took me out to P.F Changs in Middleton for some delicious Chinese food.  As you can see from my 13th birthday, I love me some Chinese food!  We had two servers because one was training and they were both so nice!  They said we were there favorite table and that made my night!  One reason they said this was because Max was so well behaved and such a cutie.  Little do they know that we stuffed him with treats every time he tried to cry and at the end he was sitting on my lap playing hibachi while sticking himself in the eye with chopsticks!  Wow how things change once you have a kid.

Luke tried to take some photos to document the evening but Max was being a typical baby and had no interest in looking at the camera.  We tried shaking the snacks as if he was a dog and would come running but that failed.

Yum treats!

Tuesday, May 24, 2011


Some of you that know me know that I LOVE birthdays, especially mine :)  I have been known to throw most of my own parties and typically have had great birthdays for most of my life.

Here are some of my most memorable parties:
* Rainbow Bright came to my house in Eden Prairie, MN when I was little and when she "flew away on her horse" {drove out of our driveway in her sedan} my mom made sure to point towards the forest so we could all watch her leave!  So super cool

* I had a figure skating party when I was 8.  We rented the skating rink for all of my 10 or so friends and then had pizza in the warming room.

* When I was 9 my birthday party was at a horse stable.  We ate in the back room with the tack and then took a hay ride through the fields.

* For my 13th birthday we rented a limo and my friends and I got all dressed up and drove around town... then we headed home for some Chinese food because of course you would eat Chinese food after riding in a limo?

* For my 21st birthday I threw myself a "Sex and the City" cocktail party.  My mom was our hostess and helped prepare all of the food and drinks.  We drank cosmopolitans and sat around my dining room table enjoying the food, cake and juicy gossip.

* For my 24th "Golden" birthday party I went all out.  I rented {for free} the prefunction area of our hotel and served hors d'oeuvres and champagne {because it's gold... and delicious!}.  The cocktail tables were decorated with small bowls of "gold-fish" with gold cards that had trivia questions all with answers that contained the word "gold" in them.  There were gold balloons surrounding the space and every guest was required to wear an item of gold.  The party was amazing until I downed a few too much "gold goodness"... proving there can be too much of a "gold" thing!
     ** My Golden Birthday was a two-part event.  Not only did I throw a super fun party but on the actual day of my birthday I happened to be in Florida with Luke and his family.  That morning Luke woke me up and told me to pack up all of my things and be ready in 1 hour.  An hour later we hit the road to an undisclosed location.  Once arriving in St. Petersburg beach we proceeded to look around.  I pointed out this amazing pink hotel located right on the beach and thought how wonderful it would be to be rich enough to stay there.  That's when Luke announced that we were checking-in at 3pm and so we had better get something to eat beforehand.  I was stunned!  We checked into our gorgeous room and was greeted a few minutes later by the butler dropping off chocolate covered strawberries and champagne.  {This birthday is amazing I thought}.  The afternoon was completed with a pedicure for me and a walk on the beach together.  We then proceeded back to our room to prepare for a nice dinner in their exquisite restaurant.  I didn't have anything to wear as I mostly packed beach stuff for our Florida trip.  With that, Luke pulled out a gorgeous dress from Arden B that he had picked out. {notice the photos below}  We dinned surrounded by exotic fish swimming around us in tanks and ate delicious 5 star food and drank expensive wine.  That's when Luke placed a diamond ring on the table and said "Here is your final birthday gift, I will let it speak for itself."  I was speechless.  It was one of the best moments of my life.  The whole day had set a great scene.  The server congratulated us on the engagement and admitted that he knew all along and was waiting in anticipation.

So you can see why birthdays are an exciting day for me.  Luke doesn't understand as he thinks birthdays are just another day.  I hope to raise my kids to love birthdays because why not have something in life to look forward to every year.  It also builds lovely memories that I cherish.  I have to thank my mom for helping with all of my wonderful birthdays over the year.  Without her I wouldn't have these great memories.

This year I'm thinking a nice dinner with my husband is all I need.  I'm 28 today!  28 isn't a real exciting number for me so I think low key is good.  Watch out for 30 though... I have 2 years to plan and I'm going to need it.  I'm thinking that will be a big one!
Morgana and me at my Golden Birthday Party
Me and my brother, Matt, at my Golden Birthday Party {notice his "gold chain" hahaha}
The "pink" hotel where we got engaged {Don CeSar}
Engagement Photo after dinner

Monday, May 23, 2011

Max's Pool Day

Yesterday it was 80 degrees in Madison.  We decided it would be a good day for Max to test out the pool for the first time.  He was a little scared at first since the water was a little cold and he couldn't see the bottom but after getting used to the temperature he had a little bit more fun!

Saturday, May 21, 2011

Death By Chocolate

Last night was the Madison Church of Christ's "Death By Chocolate" event at the Goodman Community Center in Madison.  A night for women to get together, relax and enjoy each others company.  My sister-in-law, Alicia, went with me and we had a wonderful time meeting new people, enjoying decadent chocolate and tasting great wines.

Amy Stevens, the Madison Church of Christ's Women's Ministry Leader, gave a great talk about how beautiful we are in God's eyes and that most of us struggle to see our own selves with the same accord as God does.

At our tables I learned some fun things about other people, for example, Carol who grew up in Augsburg, Germany for the first 5 years of her life.

The chocolate fountain and other deserts were to "die for" and my favorite wine of the night was the Cupcake, Red Velvet from California.
Chocolate Fountain

Wine Tasting
I finished the night with a chair massage by Ashley DiCarlo.  She did an amazing job and is starting her own massage business in Fitchberg so in case you want to check her out here is her email address ashleydcrl822@gmail.com She only charges $45 for an hour massage!  It was very relaxing and I could feel her working hard to try and get the knots out of my shoulders.  I credit that to carrying my laptop, purse, Max's diaper bag, my lunch and Max in his car seat down to the parking garage and back every day!

As Amy said it was a much needed time to refresh.  I always enjoy attending their events and Sunday morning services because they do an amazing job of making me feel welcomed and loved.  Thanks MCC for a wonderful evening.

Thursday, May 19, 2011

Super Women vs. Super Exhausted

There are days like this past Sunday when I feel like I can take on the world.  Full-time job (no problem), 9 month old son (easy), husband, dishes, laundry, blogging, reading, cooking, grocery shopping, spending time with friends and family, working out... give me more!  I can handle it.  These are the days I feel like Super Women.  There is nothing I can't accomplish.  I feel empowered and ready to take on the world.

Then there are days like yesterday.  I woke at 5:30am and crawled out of bed at 5:42 to squeeze in a quick leg workout before work.  When I got back from the fitness room Max was awake and needed me to go get him.  I then attempted to give him some toys to play with in his crib so I could quickly run and take a shower.  During the shower I heard him start to scream for me so I quickly finished and headed back into his room.  I brought him into the living room to play with some toys on the floor and moved my makeup into their so I could attempt to put my "mask" on while sitting on the living room floor trying to keep him entertained.  He lasted for a little while and I finally gave in and made him his morning bottle.  We sat on the couch and watched the Today show together as we always do and once he was done I raced into the bathroom to finish my hair.  Dressed and ready to go to work I got Max put together and out the door we went.

I arrived at work at 8:00am and the busy day started from there.  A pop-up meeting for Thursday, trying to get my computer backup to work... etc.  At 5:00pm I hurried out of work to pick-up Max from daycare.  After picking him up we headed to Target to get some much needed supplies for home.  We were attempting to get Luke some juice when Max had a total screaming meltdown in the juice isle and I knew it was time to leave.  We arrived home at around 6:30pm and I set him up in his high chair to have some dinner.  I had just changed out of my work clothes when Luke called to inform me that he had locked his keys in the car and needed me to drive to the golf course 15 minutes away to bring them to him.  I fed Max some food, scarfed down something for myself and drove over to the golf course.

Once back home at 7:30pm Max and I spent some time with Luke before he went off to play softball.  A few minutes after Luke left he called to ask if he had left his wallet at home (he's not having a good day either I think) I searched all around and finally found it in some pants of his.  By this time Max was crying in the living room wanting his night time bottle.  By 8:30pm he was all fed, happy and ready for bed.  I put him down in his crib and only had to go in 1 time to flip him over from his tummy to his back.  (He's been doing that lately when trying to go to sleep and still can't figure out how to get back on to his back)

By 8:45pm I was exhausted and needed a glass of wine.  These are the days that I don't want to add anymore to my plate.  I think I'm doing just fine with what I have!

Upset that he couldn't get his food in his mouth, it kept dropping into his lap.

All better, cuddling with his bunny.

Playing with mom.

Wednesday, May 18, 2011

Max The Destroyer

My parents bought Max's crib for us as a gift.  While shopping for the right crib to buy I focused on the aesthetics of it and whether it was my style, my mom on the other hand focused on the durability.  She kept talking about how she thinks our child is going to be rowdy and may take apart his crib at some point.  I just laughed at her.

Now after this weekend I'm starting to wonder if she was correct in thinking that.
I looked over from where I was writing on the couch to see this little stinker ripping apart his play mat!

He has torn the #5 out and was eating the edging.


Here he is that night after his bath sporting his new mohawk with dad... trouble.