Showering Chloe Grace!

This past Saturday, JP’s mom, sister and aunt hosted a shower for little Miss Chloe Grace! It was so wonderful to spend a little more time celebrating this little girl and visiting with family and friends.

Everything about the shower was perfect. Auntie Annie’s super swanky Montrose town home was an intimate setting for the close group of people that attended. The cake was made my Acadian Bakery in Houston (The fresh strawberry cake, oh my yum! So light and fluffy!) and the flower arrangements were done by my seester-in-law Kate! She used her stellar high school floral design skill to create amazing arrangements. But seriously y’all. Do you see how pretty those flowers are?!

While I was opening presents, Kate was capturing the moments from the other couch. Let’s just say that there were lots to choose from and it’s safe to say that I am a woman of many facial expressions. Well I’m passionate and everyone just knew what to get for Chloe because I clearly loved it all!

We have more adorable clothes, shoes and accessories (this girl will never go without a bow) for every occasion. The Disney, Aggie and football ones take the cake. We also got her bouncer, a Baby Bullet, my diaper bad, toys, books (dinosaur books to be more specific), a Baby Bjorn carrier and important bits and pieces to get us through day to day life with a baby!

And most importantly, we got our stroller and car seat travel system! Along with a ton of other goodies from JP’s parents, grandparents and sister!

As you can see, I loved the card as well…

“It has cat elbows!” – Kate

After presents and cake, of course we had to have a photo shoot!

Me and JP’s grandmother, Pepi

My seester-in-love Kate
Mom (Donna) – Kate – Amy – Mom (Jody)

I actually got Auntie Annie to take a picture with me!

I love these girls! Maggie – Kate – Amy – Ashely – Alison
My best girls…A^3

Our signature “We love Chloe” pose.

Maggie – Amy – SaraLee

Me and my Miss Robin!

My Aunt Dianne – Me – My Momma

Me and Aunt Bonnie!

Thank you to everyone who has shown Chloe, JP and I so much love and support. We couldn’t get through this crazy milestone in our lives without each and every one of you. Whether it is in forms of words of advice and encouragement, offers to help when she arrives or showering her with love, we cannot thank you enough. Only one more month until she is due to join us and we’re getting more and more excited each and every day. I know that our lives are about to change forever in the best way possible. Now it’s time to enjoy the last few weeks as a family of 4 (we couldn’t forget our fur babies, Maggie and Moose!) before we meet our baby girl!

post signature

35 Week Bumpdate

I’m not sure how it happened, but 35 weeks have come and gone, and we’re rapidly approaching Chloe’s due date! I feel like 35 weeks is some sort of milestone to celebrate! Only two more weeks until she is full term and hopefully about five weeks until I get to see her sweet face!

I received my maternity pictures from my wonderful photographer, Marci from Three Peas Photography. All the pictures in this post (besides the weekly bump pics) were taken by her!

How Far Along? 35 weeks 
Size of Baby: Canary Melon (what?) or a Coconut! At this point, she’s probably close to or has reached the full length she’ll be at birth (on average 19-21 inches). She could weight between 4.2 and 5.5 lbs. My doctor told me that it’s likely that I’ll have a small baby. Not unhealthy small, just petite! I think I’m okay with that as long as she’s healthy and mine πŸ™‚ Of course she still has several weeks to get bigger!

Weight Gain: I was up 26 lbs from my pre-pregnancy weight at my appointment on Monday, so somewhere around 26-27 lbs gained.
Maternity Clothes: Same, Target and PinkBlush!

Stretch marks: My belly is still stretch mark free. Continuing to lather up with cocoa and shea butter!
Symptoms: Mid-low back pain (especially in the evenings), HUNGER (but then not being able to eat much because I have no room in my stomach), exhaustion, clumsiness (tripping on everything, running into walls/corners, not remembering how big my belly is)
Cravings: Ice, peanut/almond butter, toast, grapes, smoothies, no new changes. Peanut/almond butter is still a food group. And it’s my favorite one.
Gender: A Little Princess

Mood: Ready for baby girl to arrive πŸ™‚
Nursery: Post coming next week! It’s pretty, pink and princess-y!

Movement: Still my tiny ninja dancer! I have a feeling this little girl will come out movin’ and groovin’! I’m carrying her very high so a lot of her movements are up near my rib cage, especially in the evening. As the day goes on, her movements get more uncomfortable. Despite the aches she gives me when she’s trying to escape her tiny home, every movement makes me love her more and more. If only she would stop stretching out so much when I’m trying to wind down and go to sleep!
Sleep: I sleep well every other night. I think I’m so exhausted after sleeping terribly the night before that I zonk out. Still just waking up with cramps and for potty breaks. I just have trouble falling back asleep once I wake up!

Workouts: Starting to slow down. Most of my workouts involve walking these days. I try to walk for 30 minutes every day, sometimes broken up into two 15 minute sessions. I love having an indoor track to walk around at work! I’m also trying to workout with my classes 1-2 times doing 50-75% of what I tell them to do!

What I Miss: Feeling comfortable and without back pain!

Belly Button in or out? It’s an outtie!

Wedding rings on or off? On. I don’t wear them to work anymore because they get a little snug when I workout or if I’m hot.
Labor Signs: No, let’s keep it this way for a few more weeks! Any time after 38 weeks is fine with me Chloe!

Anything making you queasy or sick: Still meat. I do eat some, but never by itself.
Best Moments The Past 2 Weeks: Road tripping to the mountains for Caitlin & John’s wedding in NC/GA! The car trip was long, but the time spent in the mountains was so perfect.
Looking forward to: Chloe’s second baby shower tomorrow!!! We’re having a family shower at Auntie Annie’s house and I can’t wait πŸ™‚

Time for our every 10 week comparison! My tiny dancer is growing big and strong. It’s funny because it’s sometimes hard for me to remember what my body was like before I had this bump! I was so tiny, but of course then I didn’t think I was!

In case you’re interested, check out some of my other bump posts:
We’re Pregnant!
15 Week Bumpdate
16 Week Bumpdate
18 Week Bumpdate
Gender Reveal Party
20 Week Bumpdate
22 Week Bumpdate
24 Week Bumpdate
Bump Around the World
29 Week Bumpdate
31 Week Bumpdate
33 Week Bumpdate
Couples Baby Shower

post signature

GNO: Pampered Perfection

Earlier this month, I had the opportunity to meet up with a bunch of other Houston area bloggers for a fun week day Girls Night Out! Seeing as though I’m pretty pregnant and work is exhausting, a fun, relaxing night is just what I needed. Not to mention I hadn’t seen my Houston blogger friends in months! They hadn’t seen my giant belly that’s for sure.

**Before I tell you all about how awesome my GNO was, I wanted to note that all photographs were taken by Nicki Evans. Check out her amazing work and follow along on social media: Facebook | Instagram | Twitter**

Our girls night out was in Katy at The Wellness Center and Well Polished Salon. We were given a card with information about the night including what tasty treats were available and where different treatments were held. We also received a “relaxation passport” to write down the times of all of our mini sessions throughout the evening. At the end of the night, we were able to put our card into a drawing for prizes!

Printing done by Agave Brothers
So here’s how it all worked out…when we arrived, we were able to sign up for 15 minute time slots for various different treatments (I’ll tell you all about those later!). As the night went on we went to our treatment sessions as planned and in between we were able to meet new people, catch up with old friends, snack on delicious goodies and just relax!
The food provided was delicious and so well presented! 

They had mini strawberry salad cups, shrimp ceviche, fruit, cheese, crackers, Nothing Bunt Cake mini cakes, fruit infused water and wine! I definitely wish I could have partaken in the wine, but my time will come. I’m pretty sure the Nothing Bundt Cakes surpassed wine on my current craving list. This pregnant lady was excited about cake! Mmmmm sweets…

The Wellness Centre and Well Polished had tons of options available for out mini sessions. Here are the ones that I took advantage of:

  • Neck and shoulder treatment
  • Hot stone foot treatment
  • Chair massage
  • Hand treatment
  • Acupuncture demonstration
You also had the opportunity to try out:
  • Eye or Lip Treatment
  • Skin consultation
  • Chiropractic adjustment

I would say that anything that involved rubbing my back, feet, neck and shoulders were my favorite by far! The massage therapists at The Wellness Centre were amazing. They all worked with me to make sure that the right pressure was being applied, prenatal rules were being followed and modified anything necessary to make sure I was comfortable. We definitely had to adjust the chair to account for my protruding belly! And it was oh so worth it!

I also really enjoyed the acupuncture demonstration. I was really intrigued to learn about acupuncture and the science/theory behind it. Some of the ladies opted to try out some needles, but I decided to stick with some of the small pressure beads. They are tiny hard beads attached to a bandaid like material that are inserted in specific places in your ear. The different locations effect different systems, muscles and joints in your body. I had one placed for lower/mid back pain and my digestive system. The theory is that you press the bead when feeling pain in that area and it helps to relieve it. They also stay on for up to three days! I’m not certain how well it worked since it was my first time, but I’m really interested in learning more!

Girls Night Out at the spa was pretty wonderful and oh so needed! It was great to catch up with some ladies that I’ve met over the past few years and meet several new faces! Some of which I had read their blogs or seen on our Facebook group! It’s always fun finally putting a face with a name…or a blog in our case!

If you’re in the Houston or more specifically Katy area, you should definitely check out The Wellness Centre (Facebook | Instagram) and Well Polished Salon (Facebook)!

I will definitely be going back that’s for sure! In fact, I was chosen as one of the winners and I’m getting a free Spa Facial! I’m super excited and might just get a mani/pedi while I’m out there!

A big special THANK YOU to Breanna at The Thing About Joy for putting all of this together for us! We all appreciate the hard work that went into this lovely GNO! You’re the best πŸ™‚

post signature

Mountain Wedding Weekend

Yesterday, I spent 15 hours in the car traveling back from the mountains in Eastern Georgia/Western North Carolina! That’s right, ROAD TRIP! And at 34 weeks pregnant. Pretty impressive, I know. More importantly, those traveling with me were troopers and they never complained about the stops! We traveled through the night on the way there and needed 6 stops, and needed another 6 to get us home. Not too shabby if I do say so myself.

Now the reason we traveled half way across the country and back for a long weekend was for Caitlin and John’s wedding! Lauren and I were Caitlin’s Matrons of Honor, so we arrived around lunchtime on Thursday to help out with the festivities!

Thursday we went up to The Highlands, NC as soon as we got into town. We wandered around Main Street for a bit sipping milk shakes and shopping! Naturally, I ended up buying something from the store that John’s sister is the fashion buyer for! She helped me find some cute pregnancy dresses that will also be adorable when I’m not so large, and I had to narrow it down to my fave. Then we went down the mountain into Sky Valley, GA to hang out with Caitlin’s family at the cabin they rented! We relaxed until about 7pm and then we were worn out after traveling through the night. We were all in bed and passed out by 8pm…no complaints here.

Friday started the best way possible…mani-pedis in The Highlands followed by an outdoor lunch at the Wine Garden!

Later that evening we had the wedding rehearsal at St. Helena Catholic Church and the rehearsal dinner at the Dillard House, which happened to be where Lauren, Matt, JP and I were staying! The rehearsal went well though it was so hot in the church! They didn’t turn the A/C on until we got there to save energy, but they promised it would be a lot cooler the next day! The rehearsal dinner was amazing! The food was absolutely delicious and we all stuffed our faces. Oh and there were about 15 dessert options. Heaven for this pregnant lady! I had to choose just two since I didn’t have room for more. The peach cobbler and carrot cake were to die for!

The second best thing about the rehearsal dinner (besides dessert of course) was the petting zoo! We had been itching to go since we got to the Dillard House, so we went over to see the animals after dinner to walk around and digest πŸ™‚ The miniature horse was pregnant too, so I had to get a picture with her!

Saturday morning we were up bright and early to start getting ready! We got prepped for the big day at the reception site, The Vineyard at High Holly. They had a barn for the guys to get ready in and an adorable cottage for the ladies! We all got our hair and makeup done and finished up last minute preparations.

By 12:30, we were off to the church to get John and Caitlin officially married! It started raining on our way to the church, but it stopped during the ceremony at some point and the sun was out and shining! They do that that rain is good luck on your wedding day!

The ceremony was definitely different than the rehearsal which made all of us laugh, but it was beautiful! And much cooler…thank you A/C! I did the first reading and crushed it. πŸ™‚ It’s safe to say that public speaking has never been an issue for me. After pictures, we headed back to the Vineyard for more pictures before getting the party started!

The reception’s view was gorgeous. This was probably the most beautiful wedding location I’ve even been to. We were sure to wander around the vineyard and snap lots of pictures. We also danced a ton with the live band that Caitlin found. They had a great vibe and played some awesome songs. JP requested Shout which is his favorite wedding song to dance to and it was a big hit. I think the dance floor was the most crowded for that one!

The reception went down without a hitch and I’m pretty sure the bride and groom had the time of their lives! As they should πŸ™‚ Later that night, there was an after party up in The Highlands, but we opted to go back to our hotel and hang out for the evening. I didn’t want to drive up and down the winding mountain roads in the dark and we had to get up early to go get back on the road. I heard the after party was a blast though! Since that came from the mouth of the bride, that’s all that matters. As we left the reception, we stopped at the Piggly Wiggly to grab some beer and snacks to take back to the hotel where we sat outside in rocking chairs, played horse shoes and visited the petting zoo one last time!

Side story: This llama was not a nice llama. He thought that he was too good for us. I tried to get him to take a picture with me several times and he was not having it. JP was able to snap this picture really quickly and as you can see by my surprised/big cheese smile, I was pumped. Take that Mr. Llama, you’re not too fancy for me! I’m pretty fabulous myself!

Overall, it was a wonderful trip! We spent a lot of time in the car, but it was so worth it. We took too many pictures, ran around like crazy, danced like fools and spent time with some of the most awesome friends ever!

To John and Caitlin: I am so, so happy for y’all. It was an honor to stand by your side as you committed yourselves to each other before God, family and friends. I can’t wait to see what God has in store for your marriage. I know he will work amazing miracles through y’all. Here’s to many years of happiness and hopefully a friend for Chloe! πŸ˜‰ I love you both!

post signature

Sugar and Spice and Everything Nice!

This past weekend, six of the most amazing friends a girl could ask for got together and threw Chloe, JP and me the most adorable BabyQ! I loved having the laid back couples shower. I think even the guys had fun with all the games we had. No silly baby shower games, we had competitions y’all.

Bottle chugging competition, baby food tasting, blind folded diaper changing, sippy flippy cup and my personal favorite, Babies Against Motherhood (yes, it was a spin off of Cards Against Humainty). In the end Team Blamber ended up taking home the championship because they participated in every event and did a pretty solid job!

Not only did we get to spend time with so many close friends, but they showered Chloe with the most adorable gifts! JP’s face for half of the items were priceless! We were blessed to receive so many things that Chloe is going to need…and lots of tiny clothes!

The girls all got together and bought a jogging stroller for Chloe and me! I can’t wait until I can cleared to run again so I can test that sucker out. The best part is that our carseat clicks right into the jogger, so we don’t have to wait for her to get bigger to use it.

I also have to brag about my amazing dresser/changing table really quick. Caitlin and her husband built, from scratch a dresser for Chloe’s room. It turned out even better than I could have imagined. I’m pretty sure they need to open up their own furniture shop. I posted a picture of it in Chloe’s room below!

Overall, the shower was a huge success. The turnout was perfect; the food was delicious; the games were a blast. I couldn’t have asked for a more perfect day!

To everyone that came and celebrated Chloe, thank you so much for supporting us and being such a special part of our lives! To those of you that couldn’t make it, we love you to! I feel so blessed and know that this little girl will grow up with so much love in her life. Only a few more weeks until we get to meet her and see her sweet face! My body is pretty ready at this point. I’ll miss her kicks from within and our special little bond, but I’m ready to share her with the world!

The wonderful women I spend most of my week days with!

My gorgeous Mommas!

I’m pretty sure we’re going to make beautiful babies. I’m kind of biased, but I think we’ll find out if that’s the truth soon enough πŸ™‚

post signature

33 Week Bumpdate

I’m at the point where I can say that I may have a baby next month! Of course, it could always be the following, but you never know! Only 7 more weeks until we meet our baby girl. Everyone asks me if I’m ready and excited; I’m definitely excited, but I don’t think I’ll be fully ready until she is actually here πŸ™‚

How Far Along? 33 weeks 
Size of Baby: A Honeydew Melon! She’s about 18-19 inches and weighs over around 4lbs! Baby girl is slowly turning into a chunk! She’s almost reached her birth length, but will continue to pack on the pounds, about 1/2 a pound each week.

Weight Gain: 25 lbs from my pre-pregnancy weight
Maternity Clothes: Yes! Still rocking’ my Target and Pink Blush Maternity go tos. Here’s a sneak peek of my PinkBlush dress from maternity pics:

I also bought another PinkBlush dress on clearance for my baby shower this weekend!

Stretch marks: None on my belly, just under my left breast! Still lathering up with cocoa and shea butter hoping it stays this way! 
Symptoms: HUNGER! Yup hungry all the time, but I don’t always feel like I have room to eat. Mid to low back pain, but only when I’m trying to relax. Shortness of breath, gas and clumsiness! 
Story time – Y’all, I fell up the stairs on Sunday. It hurt so bad. My bad ankle rolled and my foot slipped down. Luckily I was able to bend my knees and thrust them forward so I didn’t hit my belly. I have some pretty sweet rug burns and bruises to prove it. The saddest part of the story is that I was excitedly bounding up the stairs to eat some cheesecake. #pregnantladyproblems. Instead of eating cheesecake, I ended up bawling my eyes out (mostly because I was scared and startled) and going to bed. Whomp whomp.
Cravings: Still pretty consistent with peanut and almond butter, smoothies, cold fruit (give me all the watermelon!), almond milk, bread of all kinds (I don’t discriminate), my Aunt Dianne’s potato salad, ice cream, all forms of peanut butter and jelly

Gender: A Little Princess
Mood: I feel like I’ve been less crabby lately and overall happy and excited!
Nursery: Did you see my updates from the last post? Since then we’ve gotten our glider set up and I’ll have the last wall finished after my baby showers πŸ™‚ Here are a few new snaps I’ve taken on my phone:

Movement: I have a tiny dancer on my hands. I never have to worry about decreased fetal movement because Chloe always makes herself well known. At this point, her movements are much more defined and sharp. Some of them HURT! It’s fun to watch my belly do the wave when I’m just relaxing on the couch. She’s getting pretty cramped in there!
Sleep: Great. I know most people can’t say this, but I’ve been wearing myself out thus sleep is coming easy. I’m up early for work (between 4:15-5:30), so instead of taking a nap when I get home I stay awake, get a thing or two done around the house and relax. Then I’m ready for bed by 8:30-9:00pm, and I’m out like a light!
Workouts: Killing it! I try to workout with my strength classes twice a week, my spin class once a week and lots of walking. We have an indoor track at the gym which is nice for these hot summer days. I’m still able to take the pups out and about, but I can only go a short distance with both of them. I need JP for longer walking with my crazy babies.
Quick brag moment – I taught a step class yesterday! That’s right, 33 weeks pregnant and on the step. I was exhausted afterwards, but it felt great!

What I Miss: Laying around comfortably on the couch and sushi…I’ve been wanting to go to Crave Sushi lately! I think an avocado roll is in my future!

Belly Button in or out? It’s an outtie!

Wedding rings on or off? On. I don’t wear them to work anymore because they get a little snug when I workout or if I’m hot.
Labor Signs: No, let’s keep it this way for 7 more weeks!
Anything making you queasy or sick: Still meat. I do eat some, but never by itself.
Best Moments The Past 2 Weeks: Celebrating Caitlin’s bachelorette weekend, maternity pictures and my high school reunion!
Looking forward to: Chloe’s first baby shower tomorrow!!! And traveling to Georgia/North Carolina for Caitlin and John’s wedding weekend next week! 

post signature

A Milestone Weekend!

Once again, I’ve missed a Monday and nearly missed a Tuesday on this little blog of mine. I actually have too much to share from this weekend to forget about it! This weekend was full of milestones for me. On Friday, I attended my high school reunion. Saturday morning we hit the 32 week mark and had our maternity photo shoot with Marci from Three Peas Photography. The rest of the weekend was literally spent outside, by the pool, at my parents’ house. The last one doesn’t sound like a milestone, but considering the fact that it not only rained every day in May, Houston flooded two weeks ago. So yeah, a completely sunny weekend was a milestone indeed. Now let’s take a look at the awesomeness in collage form because everyone really reads blogs for the pictures πŸ˜‰

High School Reunion!

We had such a great time and it’s hard to believe that I graduated from high school 10 years ago! The first 30 minutes or so were kind of awkward as everyone was getting acquainted and enjoying an adult beverage or two…none for this momma though! We stayed until 10:00pm which is when things were really ramping up and people were opening up and becoming more chatty! I had to get to bed though because I had an 8:00am hair appointment and a photo shoot to get ready for!
32 Weeks Pregnant!

Bumpdate coming on Friday! For our pictures, I got my hair done at Blow Dry Bar in Uptown Park! I loved my curls and they fell to a perfectly natural look during the pictures.

Maternity Pictures!

These are just a few sneak peek shots that my mom was able to capture on her iPhone! I loved working with Marci. She was fast, efficient, knew what she was doing, and to top it off, she told me I was a natural. Want to know how to win your way into my heart? Tell me I’m a natural in front of the camera πŸ™‚ 

Lazy, Hazy Pool Days!

As you can see, it was terrible. And by terrible I mean amazing and relaxing. Relaxing isn’t a word that I’ve used lately! I needed it. Maggie and Moose had a blast running around. Moose never gets tired of swimming and I don’t get tired of playing with him in the water!

So there you have it…a weekend of milestones! Maybe not the biggest milestones compared to what’s to come, but milestones nonetheless. Next weekend we’ll hit another exciting one with my first baby shower! Ah I. CAN’T. WAIT!

post signature

For the Love of Running

Hello and happy National Running Day! If you’re in Houston and like to run, maybe you should take a minute to register for the Chevron Houston Marathon or Aramco Houston Half Marathon! Registration is open today! I plan to be back in running action by then, so I’m signed up for the half this year. Who’s going to join me? And if you need a running coach or a training program, I’d love to help out!

The past few months, running has been pretty sparse for me. Since I injured my ankle on Valentine’s Day (read all about it here), running has taken a back burner. My ankle is doing much better these days. I wear a sports ankle brace when I’m at work, working out or on my feet for long periods of time. Pretty much I take it off when I’m relaxing at home on my couch or just hanging out. I’ve tried running just a bit. Not a lot. I don’t think I’m capable of a lot. Luckily we have an indoor track at the gym I work at, so I’ve been able to jog a lap or two and then walk. It’s certainly harder now that I’m in my 3rd trimester. I’m looking forward to being cleared to workout after I give birth. I know I’ll be back in my true running form again. It’ll take time, but it’s so worth it.

Running has become a very important part of my life over the past 6 years. After I ran my first half marathon in San Antonio November of 2009, I was hooked. In 2011, my running became an integral part of my life. It kept me sane. It kept me in shape. It helped release anger, tension, frustrations. It helped me feel joy, peace, power. To this day, running still does this for me.

A runner not being able to run is out of place and out of his/her element. As much as it pains me to have to skip out on races and Saturday morning runs with Chandra, I know I”m doing what’s right for my body. Right now rest and relaxation are key. The inability has made me truly appreciate my sport. In the past, I’ve sulked over bad runs and wanted to quit during marathon training. I’m sure one day I’ll have those feelings again, but for now I’ll bask in the happy running memories…

  • Marathon training with Runner’s High Club
  • Crossing the finish line of my first marathon
  • Crossing the finish line for every single race for that matter
  • Loops around Memorial Park
  • Crazy hot 5Ks during Houston summers
  • Dressing like a 3 year old in a tutu and running through Cinderella’s castle
  • Running on the Montour Trail in Pittsburgh
  • Exploring different cities and countries via morning runs (Rome, several cities in Norway, Golden, Boston, Philadelphia, etc.)
  • Adventure runs like the Gladiator Rock ‘n Run and Tough Mudder
  • Meeting one of my best friends through running (I love you Chandra!!!)
  • Most importantly, running my first race with Miss Chloe Grace growing inside my belly

I can think of so many more! Happy memories make me remember why I love the sport so much. I’m lucky to have found a love for running and can’t wait until I’m back in action!

So once again, happy national running day! I managed to get a mile in…did you?

post signature

Travel Tuesday: Oui, oui, Paris.

You can’t escape the past in Paris, and yet what’s so wonderful about it is that the past and present intermingle so intangibly that it doesn’t seem to burden. -Allen Ginsberg

Be prepared for pictures galore. I didn’t want to put any into collages because then they’re tiny and not as special! Get ready to experience our 4 days in Paris, France!

In case you missed it:
Bump Around the World
Traveling while Pregnant
Eating in Europe
London, England

Day 1
We took the train from London to Paris and had a very easy time traveling from London all the way to our hotel in Paris! Once we were checked in and situated, it was about 3:30pm and we were ready to squeeze in as much as we could before bedtime. The Champs de Elysees was within walking distance from our hotel, so that’s where our Parisian adventure began!

  • We walked over to the Champs de Elysees for some window shopping. And maybe a little actual shopping. Luckily for JP, my growing belly doesn’t make it easy to fit into most clothes, so he saved quite a bit of money. I did however, get a small bag from the Longchamp Paris store!
  • The Arc de Triumph is at the other end of the Champs de Elysees, so we window shopped all the way to this amazing landmark. It’s usually a roughly 600 step climb to the top, but since I’m pregnant, we got to hop on the elevator! They wouldn’t let me take the stairs even if I wanted to. I’ll let you what, I didn’t want to. The top of the Arc showed stunning views of the city and was prefect for our first day!
  • By the time we made it down, it was time for an Italian dinner {Chloe was craving pasta!} followed by macaroons from Laduree!

Day 2
  • We started the morning visiting the Notre Dame Cathedral. Gorgeous gothic architecture, history dating back to the 1100’s, and a stunning site to visit.
  • We walked from Notre Dame along the famous lock bridge, through the street shops and eventually made it to the Luxembourg Gardens. Since it was a perfect sunny day with not a cloud in the sky, there were tons of people out and about sun bathing, playing with their kids, reading by the fountains and more. 
  • After a brief walk in the gardens, we hopped on the subway to go see the Sacre Coeur Basilica. The church itself is a beautiful sight, but the view of the city is also one to behold! It sits atop one of the highest points of the city and it is surrounded by little shops, tents and restaurants. If you’re there on a nice day, I recommend making the climb to the top by foot and getting a baguette, ice cream cone or another snack of choice, sit on the steps and just enjoy the view and atmosphere.
  • We went back to our hotel for a few hours to rest and recharge before going to see the Eiffel tower by day and night! We had dinner in between so we could see it with the sun, sunset and a night sky!

Day 3
  • We were up early to hop on a train to Versailles. You can use public transportation to easily get from the city out to Versailles. All you have to do is purchase your tickets in the subway and find your way to the station where the trains out of town go! I promise it was very easy and a nice 20 minute ride!
  • Tips for Versailles:
    • Be sure to plan your trip so you have a majority of the day at the Palace of Versailles! 
    • Wear comfortable shoes. Y’all this place is huge and I wasn’t prepared for just how much walking was involved.
    • Be prepared to walk. A lot. It was a very warm day and this pregnant lady needed quite a few rest breaks. I may have even had a mini meltdown.
    • If you’re planning to visit Marie Antoinette’s palace, know that it is roughly 2 miles away from the main palace. We walked it, but I wish I would have taken advantage of the train that takes you over there!
    • Take lots of pictures but really take in each room as you go.
    • If you’re interested in learning more, get the audio tour guide. We didn’t have one and I wish that we would have!
  • Dinner at Les Foules de Lille back over by Notre Dame
  • We decided to hop off the subway an exit earlier than our hotel to get a view of the Louvre by night! I’m so glad that we stopped to take pictures because it is so much cooler at night than by day!

Main Palace

The Gardens

Marie Antoinette’s Palace

Day 4
  • We spent a full day exploring masterpieces and learning about history at the Louvre Museum!
  • Tips for exploring the Louvre:
    • This museum is huge. Plan a full day or at least a solid chunk of your day for exploring the exhibits.
    • Get an audio guide! They have Nintendo 3DS systems that not only guide you along your way, but they are GPS enabled, so they help you get to where you want to go. Including the bathrooms πŸ™‚
    • Do the masterpieces tour. It takes 45 minutes and you get to hit some of the most cherished and prized possessions of the Louvre. 
    • Explore the other preset tour options. We did another one that was just over an hour before we started exploring on our own.
    • When exploring on your own, you can use the feature that explains more about the art you are looking at. Sometimes, it’s hard to fully understand what you’re seeing and I loved having the guide explaining some of the art.
    • You can leave and come back without paying again. This includes your audio guides! All you have to do is return it and say you’ll be back later. They let you pick it up and continue using it all day.
  • We decided to wrap up the trip where it began on the Champs de Elysees.

Whew. Did you actually make it through that entire post? If so, I’m super impressed! It took me forever to get all the pictures edited and to sort through which ones I actually wanted to share!

Let me know if you have any questions about traveling in Paris! 

Next up, Salzburg, Austria!

post signature

Weddings, Floods, Bachelorettes and Babies

Happy Monday! Look at me being all on top of things and actually blogging! (Which is super impressive for me today because I am completely wiped!) It’s been forever since I did a weekend recap, and in the last few weeks, lots has happened! So instead of a weekend recap, I’ll do a life lately recap!

Let’s rewind to Memorial Day weekend! We attended CJ and Paula’s wedding! CJ and I work together and have become friends over the past few years. One day we decided that we should double date and needless to say I clicked with Paula and JP and CJ bonded over sports (and the fact that they both go by letters…) The wedding was in Houston at the Rice Hotel Crystal Ballroom. I danced the night away with mostly Caitlin and occasionally JP when I was able to drag him out on the dance floor!

Top to Bottom :: Left to Right
1. My wonderful husband, baby Chloe at 30 weeks and me!
2. Towards the end of the evening with the bride! I made sure she had a few swigs for me!
3. Bride and Groom
4. First dance
5. Our name cards. These are special because CJ is from Hershey, PA, so Hershey kisses were perfect!
6. Health Club at Travis Place rockstars: Lauren, CJ, Amy, Caitlin
We’ve been dealing with off and on rain for pretty much the last month. Literally it rained a majority of May. The bayous and rivers were up but not too high. The evening of Memorial Day, a huge storm blew in. It didn’t just rain, it REALLY rained! Y’all it was insane. I was up for a majority of the night because the thunder was so loud and lightening was so bright. By about 3:00am, JP decided to get the pups out of their kennels to let them snuggle him on the couch. I continued to try to sleep with little luck before my alarm went off at 4:30am. Once my alarm went off, it got crazy…
My colleague Lauren (see picture above!) called me to let me know that she was stuck on I-45. It was a parking lot. And the gym receptionist was stuck in her apartment complex because of the rain. Instead of worrying about getting to the gym, I worried about getting Lauren off of I-45. Turns out, it was a parking lot because a portion of it was flooding and the water was rising since the rain was still coming down. I got JP on the phone with Lauren and 45 minutes later, she was finally at the gym. I met her up there and we pretty much had 5 people all morning. We ended up closing the gym at 11:00am because there weren’t enough people downtown for us to be needed. 
Once I got home, the sun was shining and it was a beautiful day. What are the odds? Seriously, it was crazy how bipolar the weather was being. JP and I took the pups down to the bayou to see the aftermath.

These were both taken on my iPhone. Can you believe the Buffalo Bayou rose 35 feet? Of course, since our dog park in on the bayou, it was completely flooded. Can you believe it? You can see just the tops of the trees and light poles!

Here’s a picture that JP took at 7:00am when the rain had just stopped. The bayou rose up above the street level. What you see is down Montrose Blvd at Allen Parkway. Luckily, things have pretty much returned to normal and it looks like this week will FINALLY be sunny.

Fast forward beyond the crazy week of rain to this past weekend. Saturday we celebrated Caitlin’s bachelorette party! Two of her other bridesmaids drove in from Dallas and San Antonio to celebrate with me, Lauren and of course, Caitlin! We started the day at Pinot Palette in Montrose which is a mile away from my house! They enjoyed lots of wine and champagne while I drank Fresca out of a wine glass so I could feel fancy like them! Our paintings actually ended up pretty good and we had lots of fun making them!

As we were leaving Pinot’s, it started to drizzle and storm clouds rolled in. Within seconds, the flood gates open and the sky was dropping down water in sheets! We managed to drive just a few miles to Hotel Zaza where thank goodness they have valet parking. We checked in and got up to our room to continue our party and wait out the storm. We sang, danced and got ready for dinner and a night on the town. We ate dinner at El Real, then stopped by my house for an hour before I dropped the girls off at Howl at the Moon in Midtown. At that point, I gracefully bowed out and let the girls continue their shenanigans without a tired, crabby 7 months pregnant lady πŸ™‚ Turns out, they had a complete and total blast. I mean how could they not when there was a bachelorette that looked this good?

Last but not least, my cousin Dan and his wife Ashley had their baby boy this past Friday! Camden Joseph was born May 29th at 1:33pm! Dad and I really wanted to drive down to Corpus Christi to visit them since we’re the only family within driving range! Dan and Ashley moved down from Illinois (where my dad’s family is from) to Corpus in January. Since Camden made his appearance two weeks early, their families weren’t planning on coming down for a few more weeks. I’m so glad we were able to spend some time with them and hopefully help out at least a little bit! I mean just look at how handsome this little guy is!

Like I said, these past few weeks were pretty jam packed and life isn’t slowing down. Next up we have my high school reunion and maternity pictures! So much fun in so little time. June is going to be crazy before July slows down just a bit before little Miss Chloe Grace arrives!

We are loving life right now and can’t wait to see what every day has in store for us!

Does the start of summer months mean crazy business for y’all?

post signature