My Idol

Today has me thinking about someone very special to me.

My Aunt Amy

How can I ever begin to describe her? To begin with, she exudes confidence and everything a strong, beautiful woman is. She gives me confidence when I’m not sure of myself, like when things took a turn for the worse for me.

She was there for me then, and still continues to be.

When she looks you in the eye and tells you everything will be okay, you believe her. There’s no other way around it, because she truly means what she says. She says things powerfully and full of love.

A year and a half ago, when I moved, she was there helping me move. It was hands-down the worst day of my entire life.

Her hugs got me through.

Her confidence in me got me through.

Her love got me through.

She took a leadership role that day, and saw that my things got placed exactly where they belonged. It was like she knew everything, without me having to say a word. It was not a day where I wanted to take charge and make decisions, and she knew. 

I wanted my son’s room to look just as it did in his old room, and she made it happen. She went out of her way, and even dusted all of his furniture. It smelled citrus fresh when I walked upstairs, teary-eyed, to see it. She made our house a home for us. It was entirely set up for all our routines by the end of the night. My whole life had changed, but she kept this part organized. She even stocked my kitchen with cleaning supplies and groceries. I started to begin to think we would be okay.

Three years ago, I gave birth to my son. I was in the hospital, and beyond happy holding my little guy. Things were going wonderfully, until I found I was struggling with breast feeding. I thought it would just automatically work. It was a given in my mind that I would be able to do it. My mom had done it with six children.

I struggled.

I started to feel awful and guilty. I was being told by one nurse that I needed to supplement with formula until it came through. The lactation nurse was against this idea, and I was torn. My heart was a mess. I was crying and so confused.

Then, something wonderful happened. She contacted me. She told me that when she had her two boys, she gave them formula too. She talked about how some people make you feel guilty, but that you shouldn’t. She told me it was going to be just fine if he had formula. She reminded me of how her two wonderful, bright little boys turned out perfectly, without breast milk.

A weight had been taken off of me. The guilt faded. I felt relieved. Even more tears came from my eyes. This was exactly what I needed to hear. A classy, incredible mother, whom I respect so much let me know that I was making the right decision.

She’s the kind of person you can trust. When you tell her something, you can know she wants to hear it, not for gossip’s sake, but for the right reasons. She wants to know how things are going, because she genuinely cares.

When she gives gifts, they are always really thought out. They come in the best packaging, every single time.

She’s the kind of woman who makes other women feel beautiful and confident. She will only lift others, not put him down. She stands up for what’s right. That is quite possibly my favorite thing about her. In life, you don’t often find someone who’s not afraid to voice a wrong that someone is doing. I’ve seen her do it. I’ve seen her stick up for others, including myself. She does it in such a fashion, that the other person automatically respects her for it.

She is part of a charitable foundation. She creates dream bedrooms for children who are going through impossible things, such as cancer.

She’s beautiful inside and out. I could go on and on about all of the ways she has touched my life, and many other’s lives. She’s one of those people who does things for others, and expects nothing in return. I am so lucky to call her family.

I have always wanted to thank her in a better fashion, but sometimes it is hard to find the right words for someone who has done so much. She should know she is so appreciated. I hope to be at least half of who she is. How do you repay someone like this?

Advertisements

Indecisive

First and foremost, I blame by non-daily blog posts on my super busy life lately. It’s not an excuse though, and I really enjoy reading other people’s posts even when I don’t have time to comment.

My little guy has been sick the last couple of days. It is such a bummer hearing him telling me, “It hurts Mommy.”

Two nights ago I lay in bed so indecisive. He had been up all night calling my name. I knew he had to stay home from school, but what about me? Could I call A, B or C to stay home with him? The problem is he really, really wants me when he isn’t feeling well. He just wants to lay on me. I’m the one who knows the things that make him feel better.

I just kept laying there all night, in between my frequent visits to his room. What to do?

There were just too many symptoms, and I knew I had to take him to the Doctor. I just really dislike taking off work. That’s where the struggle and indecisiveness battle in my mind throughout the night.

He’s my everything, and I knew the right thing to do was stay home to take care of him. I was able to get him to the Doctor, and fingers crossed he will feel better very soon.

Last night was tough again, but I was able to make it to work knowing that he is okay. It is just hard for him to sleep with his congestion.

That middle of the night indecisiveness though! What a struggle.

On One Knee

With the wedding rapidly approaching, I am taken back to December (cue Taylor Swift)…

The day I will never forget…

Back in early December, I was whisked away to a swanky hotel in downtown Chicago by my loving boyfriend. We were supposed to be going for an annual Christmas dinner that he has with his family. I was blown away when I found out we were staying in a penthouse suite for the weekend. There were views of the magnificent mile on every wall of the suite. There was a towel warmer, jacuzzi tub, multiple bathrooms and surprises by the hour from my incredible guy. I felt so Pretty Woman.

We went to Ditka’s steakhouse the first night, with all his siblings, their significant others and parents. We were standing on the top floor of the restaurant, as Mike himself strolled past us. It was the start of an unforgettable weekend.

After a fulfilling dinner at Ditka’s, his family left and we had the rest of the weekend to ourselves. I was told this was my Christmas gift from him. That night he shocked me with these mouth-watering chocolates shipped in from Chocolate Garden. It was a meaningful and personal gift because it was from a Michigan trip we went on that in the Fall. We found this little dirt road with hidden treasures down it, including that little quaint chocolate shop.

He’s so thoughtful.

 The next morning I woke up to more surprises. We began our day by hopping in a taxi and grabbing the all-important coffee. As my body started to gain its energy, we rounded the corner right into Bloomingdale’s. He led me inside to the Mario Tricoci day spa. The feeling of being pampered was relaxing, and so needed. I can’t even explain how amazing it is to be with someone who is so thoughtful and giving. A guy who is man enough to get a pedicure, manicure and massage with me. A guy who put so much thought into a weekend for the two of us. All I had to do for the weekend was enjoy every moment. I didn’t have to think. I was just Aimee.

Feeling rejuvenated, we decided to grab lunch on the way to the hotel. During our beautiful city walk, we passed the most breathtakingly gorgeous church I had ever seen. We decided to go inside and take in the views. My heart felt so light as I looked at the beautiful stained glass and vaulted ceilings. I love this part of him. I love how he’s up for anything. He’s not afraid to stop and smell the flowers. He’s easygoing and always up for things I am interested in doing.

During lunch, I noticed he wasn’t eating much. That wasn’t like him.

We went back to the hotel to get ready for dinner. I was told that I might want to wear a dress. I’m glad that he prepared me. I got a beautiful black high-low lace dress. It had a sweetheart neckline, which is my favorite.

After feeling the warm water run down my back, it was time to throw on my dress and my strappy black heels. I felt so relaxed, and so “me”. I perfected my makeup and found my guy struggling with his tie. I let him finish getting ready while I waited in the other room. It was then he brought me a box. The contents made my heart drop. There was a round diamond necklace with matching earrings. Around the inner diamond were cushion shaped diamonds wrapped around. I have never in my life received a real diamond necklace or earrings. I was in a fairytale.

As the gentleman he is, he put the necklace on my neck for me. I would have been too shaky to put it on myself.

He then surprised me with my favorite bottle of wine from Cooper’s Hawk. So romantic.

 I settled down and waited until he got ready. He looked as handsome as ever in his suit, but especially with his warm smile. He called me into the room he was in and said he had one more surprise.

I was supposed to look at it and read it before I turned around.

It was an ornament. My eyes could barely see the words, because I was overcome with so much emotion from the day– from this man.

Later I learned it said, Aimee and Scott, the magnificent mile, together forever, 12/13/14, engagement  ring and many more personal words from our weekend.

I turned around and he was on one knee. He had a ring. A ring I couldn’t see, through my blurry wet eyes. I had

 no

 idea

this was coming. I loved this man. He said some words that I am sure were the most heartfelt and thoughtful words he could muster, but again, I couldn’t hear. I knew what he was saying though. He has always been the one with the most beautiful words. He’s the most well-spoken person I have ever come across. The way he expresses himself, blows me away. I can’t compete. I wouldn’t even try.

I jumped into his arms, weak in the knees. He held me up as I said yes. Yes, a million times.

After an unforgettable moment, he led me downstairs where he had a limo waiting.

A limo

We rode around the city, calling our families and laughing. My cheeks hurt from smiling.

I was marrying this man.

We took pictures with the city as our background. I felt on top of the world.

Dinner was at the Signature Room on the 95th floor of the Hancock building.  We had a window seat, with what felt like a view of the entire world. There were rose petals scattered across the table. There was champagne and custom menus that read:

Aimee,

To a night we will never forget.

Love,

Scott

I never will forget this day. I never could.

Dinner ended with chocolate covered strawberries. It ended with more laughs and smiles. It ended with more pictures for our memories. It ended with the beginning of a life together.

PS- Mayyyybe I also made him crash a wedding with me later that night. I had the perfect dress.

engageengagedengagement

The Wrench

He’s leaving in less than one month.

I just got the call today.

Everything is still amazing, and this is his dream opportunity. He’s being sent to the police academy for special training for 12 weeks. He passed his power test, which was such an impossibly hard test. I’m insanely proud of him, and wouldn’t let him pass this up for the world.

It’s just…he’s leaving.

It is a residential program, far away. He will be able to come home on the weekends. We will be able to talk every night.

We’ve got this.

Absence makes the heart grow fonder. Right?

It’s Open!

Every single day Josh and I pass by Chuck E. Cheese on our ride home.

Every single day he squeals with delight about his favorite place.

Every single day he says, “Oh Mommy, sorry it’s closed!”

Today it will be open! Today, we are having a little birthday party at his favorite place.

Today he will eat a cake with Mickey and all of his favorite characters on it.

Today I will get to see his face light up as he gallops (huge galloper) from game to game.

Saturday my baby will be three!

Saturday I will wonder how he came to be so big.

Saturday I will sing “Happy Birthday” to him for the 100th time this week. I love that boy!

50 Days

50 days until I close on my house.

65 days until our wedding.

We are busy people.

The thing is, I am not complaining one bit. It feels as if everything is flowing so easily. Things are just coming together. The wedding planning is definitely stress free. Scott makes it fun.

Flowers…done

Dress…done

Reception…done

Invitations…being sent out next week

Photographer, DJ…done

It feels like everything keeps falling into place. Am I missing something here? It feels like it should be more complicated.

Today is our home inspection and flower appointment. Tonight we are also looking for our new home. We have our fingers crossed that we will find a place we feel at home in. It seems like a lot to do, but he makes it easy. When you are doing things as a team, everything is manageable.

7 Days

Sold.

I was told I’d it would be a dream if it sold. The market is just not “there” right now.

I thought I’d try my luck and put my house on the market anyways. I really need a bigger place. It just doesn’t suit us anymore, with me getting married in a couple of months.

I thought, if I don’t get any nibbles in the next few months, I’ll try again next year. It’s not vital that I need to move. It would just help.

Day one, I had a showing. She put an offer on the house.

That was unexpected!

We couldn’t come to an agreement, but it was exciting nonetheless.

Days two through six I had multiple showings per day. It was a little exhausting cleaning and keeping out of the house with little Josh so they could get a good view of the home. We got through it though.

Day six I received my second offer. Day seven I told my home.

Just. Like. That.

It shouldn’t have sold. The comps in the area were against it. The market is not there.

It sold, so fast.

We are moving. I think everything happens for a reason. We are going to find our new home to make new memories in. A new home with sounds of joy squealing from my little Josh. A new home with bubble baths, reading and family dinner. A new home to tuck him in every night.

Future Plans

Dear Joshua,

 Today has me thinking about Spring and the beautiful weather we are about to embark on. I am really looking forward to all of the fun things to do with you this year. I was thinking about all of the fun we had last year, and all of the new and different fun we will have this year, because you are so much bigger now!

 Today I am going to take you on a walk in your favorite wagon to our park by our new house. We haven’t been able to do that since last September. I keep thinking about how much you have changed since last Summer/Fall. You can do so much more now, and you understand so much more. Everything seems to have changed since then.

 We have so much to look forward to this year. I decided to type up a list of a few things we definitely have to look forward to in Spring/Summer 2014.

  • First big vacation to Spooner
  • Tons of trips to the zoo
  • Fishing
  • Lots of wagon and stroller walks
  • Many park visits
  • Visiting family and friends
  • Visits to Lake Katherine
  • Tons and tons of picnics with your aunts
  • The library- hopefully join a club
  • Museums
  • The Children’s Museum
  • Swimming
  • Some downtown adventures
  • Gymboree
  • Great America- (you LOVED this last summer!!)
  • Water Parks- overnight!
  • Sleepovers with your aunts at our house
  • Niagara Falls trip
  • Choo choo restaurant
  • Some kind of train ride!

 This list just got started, but we are definitely doing all of the above. I think this is going to be our best year yet! I love you so much…SO much!! Thanks for being my best bud!

 Love,

 Mommy

Juggling

As things are changing in my life, I was think about all of the different family and friends that I have. I am so thankful to have them all in my life.

Today I went out to breakfast with my boyfriend’s incredible grandma. She lost her husband earlier this week, and my heart broke for their whole family. I can’t even imagine what that’s like. I loved hearing the stories of her past today when we were together. It reminded me of how much I adore my own grandparents. Family is everything.

After breakfast I started feeling a little anxious. I am extremely close with my family, and I love to spend quality time with each and every one of them. I started thinking about how I need to call and make more time for everyone.

The thing is, my parents are divorced. I have a step family, my moms side, my dad’s side, my ex’s family and my boyfriend’s family.

Holidays are big adventures for Josh and I. Christmas Day alone last year I took Josh to five homes, other than my own. I am realizing now how hard it will be for Josh to juggle all of this as he begins to get older. It was tough for me to make it to every single party as I grew up, but for him it will be tougher. He has even more family. I will just make a conscious effort to always make him feel comfortable with whatever makes him happy and whatever he wants to do. I remember always feeling guilty for missing certain parties when I had to attend others. I vow to never make him feel guilty. I’ve been there.

Josh and I are extremely lucky to have all of these family and friends in our lives. We will learn to juggle. I am going to make a few calls this week for some well needed visits. I think I’ll start with my Dad.

Thanksgiving Hikes

Growing up, my Dad taught me the things he knew. He didn’t know many girl things, and I am pretty “girly”. He taught me to ride dirt bikes, go karts, ride horses, go boating, hiking and fishing.

I am grateful for these times. I especially looked forward to our Thanksgiving hike every year. About 20 of us would hike out to the middle of the forest on Thanksgiving morning every year and we would make bon fires, cook and eat. I would explore with my cousins.

Depending in the weather, we would sled or skate. These memories always stick with me. I loved gathering sticks and helping my Dad cook. We had everything from tacos to soup to s’mores. Every one brought something different.

We would go on adventures and pretend to build homes out if anything in nature we could find. As we got older, we began to remember the path way out to our secret spot in the middle of the forest.

So many memories are there and are still made every year. I haven’t gone in a few years, but maybe this is the year I might head back. Maybe soon I can share with Josh my childhood tradition. He can begin some adventures of his own.