Update / Salt Lake

October 25, 2015

Oh holy crap. I am so bad at blogging. I still think I hate it and spend too much time making fun of it to actually do it. Obviously it’s been a really long time since I posted something. The last few months have been cray cray. I am kind of a mess. Too much of a mess to really take time and invest in the internets.

But- writing a quickie update on our little Phamily might make me feel better. Sometimes you just have to put your shit out there.

So in my last post, I was talking about how much anxiety I was having. Mostly because we were in the throws of making the decision to move back to Salt Lake City. Hardest choice we’ve ever made. Long story short, we did.

Brandon was offered a new job, and we made our way back to our old stomping grounds. It’s a good job and a good move. Good to be back with family and friends- but so hard to leave Washington. Too hard to talk about right now. We’ve been living (temporarily) in an apartment while selling our home in Washington and hunting for a new one in Utah. I can’t bring myself to unpack any more than what is absolutely necessary to survive.

I have not cooked a single thing (unless the microwave counts?) since we moved. We have paper plates, cups, and forks. Sorry, environment. (We had spoons, they ran out. Remembering to buy more is hard, so we eat yogurt and cereal with forks. Soup really doesn’t work with a fork, so we drink that out of the mug we use to heat it up in.)  I can’t keep up on laundry, or keep the apartment clean.  I’m totally not myself. I’ve been completely overwhelmed by the move and baby Walter, who has gone from sleeping through the night every night- to not sleeping at all ever. I have weird delayed postpartum issues. Maybe more about that later… but just know that I am not on my A game in the least. I’m dropping balls right and left.

>>please note it’s really hard for me not to make jokes about adolescent boys after that statement<<

This is not meant to be a negative post. Just honest. I am not perfectly handling myself and my children with ease and style. I am barely keeping it together. Sometimes we all get caught up in looking good or even perfect online and social media. Or- the really hard to achieve “perfectly imperfect” which is when we post things about our flaws and shortcomings….but really just make us look amazing. You know what I’m talking about. Well, this is not that. This is seriously one of the most trying times in my life. But- at the end of the day, I am just so thankful for these 3 boys I share my life with. They are the best.

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I remind myself every day that this just one of those phases in life that feels like it’s killing me- but actually it’s teaching me. Teaching me some lesson, making me stronger for something, and brighter days are ahead.

Looking forward to those days!!

Oh, and here’s a photo of what our apartment actually really looks like right this minute. And this is a “good” day. (insert emoji with big eyes showing teeth here)

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XO

Brittany

and then there were 2

July 17, 2015

so i’ve been super anxious lately. i don’t exactly know why, i just know that there’s been more sleepless nights, and not because of walter, but because of my racing thoughts. it’s midnight right now, and i’m on my laptop, eating watermelon (because i can’t find any chocolate) looking through photos and memories and thinking about what’s to come and what life will bring for my little family of 4.

i’m so i madly in love with my 2 boys i could just explode. they are just the most magnificent things i’ve ever seen. i can’t believe they’re mine. sometimes i actually think to myself “these are mine?? i get to keep them?? what did i do to deserve such wonderful boys??” i feel unworthy sometimes. i’ve been blessed beyond words.

that being said… sometimes it’s not all story time and picnics in meadows. sometimes it’s screaming tantrums, talking back, crying for no reason, and bodily fluids everywhere. -and then there are the kids…

so cheeky.

sometimes i am really bad at having 2 kids. i’m not nearly as good at it as i thought i would be. there’s not much grace in my steps these days. i’m quite certain i look like a traveling circus (what i really want to say is shit show) and it’s just not coming to me as easily as i thought it would. motherhood does not always come naturally for me. i have to really try.

instagram is a lie.

this is not one of those posts where i claim to be a bad mom and hope that 200 people leave comments telling me otherwise. (and by 200 i mean the 2 people who read this blog) truthfully, it’s not that i think i’m a “bad mom” – it’s that i’m bad at being a mom, and a decent human being at the same time. usually the “being a mom” comes before the “decent human being” part. i always put my kids first, but man…do i suck at keeping on top of everything else in life. bahahaha.

walter is just the perfect little addition to our family. having him in our home and in our arms for the last 3.5 months has been magic. i love newborns. (ok, i only love my own newborns. other newborns freak me out. so small. too small!!) but i love having such a fresh soul in my home. there’s a sweetness a new baby brings to a home unlike anything else. i feel so lucky to have him.

so even though i can’t seem to keep the laundry pile under mt. everest status, there’s never a clean bottle when i need one, my car is full of empty starbucks cups, i cook the same 3 meals every week on rotation (and by cook i mean reach for the food through my car widow) and flip flops and yoga pants have become my new uniform #capsulewardrobe i’m just so grateful to have these 2 boys. i’m not always great at being their mom, but i sure will keep trying. IMG_0867IMG_0836IMG_1019IMG_1062IMG_0919IMG_0946IMG_1039IMG_0866IMG_0971

 

summer jams // part one

July 13, 2015

i’m always interested in what people are listening to. i love music. love love love. i always have the radio on, or a cd (yes…i still buy compact discs and it’s still hard to open them) i’m not one of those hip people who knows about all the latest “underground” bands. chances are, i didn’t like it before it was cool. i probably don’t have the tee shirt, and i probably didn’t know about it before you. so rest assure, my hipster friends, you are sill far cooler and superior than i.

>>insert random memory here<< i once had a co worker yell at me because i owned the beatles sgt. peppers album. he said there’s no way i actually like the beatles, and he liked the beatles since he was 8. i hated to break it to him…but he wasn’t the first person to like the beatles. lots of people knew about it before him. i did and still do own that album. i also used to drive a beetle. what now, friend? mic drop.

anyway… lately i’ve been listening to these 8 albums on rotation and repeat. none of them are new. all of them are well known bands and artists, but guess what? they’re totally worth listening to, even if you weren’t the first person to know about them. july music 1music2

 

1-amy winehouse // back to black – obvi i have amy on my mind because of the new documentary, but i also love listening to this in the summer because i bought this album in june of 2007 and listened to it nonstop that summer. i’m weird about that. i have seasonal music. this will always be a summer cd for me.

2-wings // greatest hits – mostly for this song and watch the video because it’s so bloody charming and brilliant. i love linda mccartney. she was so hip. and this song makes me think of my dad and my grandpa walt.

3- mandy moore // wild hope – not kidding. i love this one. especially the last 2 songs.

4- dixie chicks // taking the long way – this is probably one of my top 5 favorite albums of all time, and they are probably my favorite girl band. no- not probably. they are. i love this album and all it’s angry political glory. i think natalie maines is a genius and one day i’d like to sit down and have coffee and laugh with her.

5- the beach boys // pet sounds – because “wouldn’t it be nice” and “god only knows” are just the 2 greatest songs ever. and it’s summer, and if summer has a sound track, it’s this.

6.-foo fighters // sonic highways – i just recently watched a few episodes from the docu-series on hbo about recording this album. it’s freaking fascinating and educational. i love music history and learning about the stories behind songs. and dave grohl rocks my world.

7- a fine frenzy // bomb in a bird cage – this is my background noise album.

8- the mamas and the papas // greatest hits – this one’s all for the nostalgia. every road trip we ever took as a family when i was young, we listened to this one in the car at least 3 times from beginning to end.

xoxo brittany

do it anyway

July 7, 2015

ok. so let’s talk. really talk. like, not pretty instagram/pinterest/blog talk.

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for a long long time i really hated blogs. ok, kind of still do. it’s always just seemed like a platform to either brag or complain.

check out my boat! look at my $500 shoes and my $1200 bag! my kids are far more beautiful than yours. look at all this stuff i got for free!! it’s organic. i can cook. i can make a wreath out of dirt. i live in a mid-century modern loft and it’s basically perfect. i’m so hip and i’m not even trying. disneyland. disneyland again. and again. and again. i eat donuts every day. i only eat avocados. why yes, i am a size 00 and yes i did just have a baby 3 days ago. at home. all nat-u-rawwwl.  my walls are like, so white. i woke up like this. soft pretzel!!! oh look, my children are all together reading classic books lying in a field because we love nature and also my toddler wears a bonnet. did i mention all the stuff i got for free? free stuff. freeeee stufffff.

#amirite

anyway… i steered clear of this scene for a long time. then, i started an online business. guess what? you really can’t run an online business without delving in deep to the world of social media and blogs. so, i started a blog, several, actually. this is the latest…welcome. i have a “pretty” IG account (or at least i try) and i’ve done my share of whoring myself out for likes, tags, shout outs, re-grams etc. i’ve given away free merchandise, kissed pretty little size 00 bums of bloggers, who sometimes aren’t very nice and don’t always come through on the IG love they promise to give if you send them $200 of freeeee stufffff.  there’s some greedy B’s out there in the world of blogging. there’s also some true gems, absolute gems who i’m so thankful to have gotten to know over the last few years. but then there are the B’s…

anyway…i’ve sure tried to be a lot cooler than i actually am online. it just makes me feel weird and uncomfortable and self conscious.

eff that.

i gave the online shop a go…but truth be told, it’s just not my thing. i loved having a brick and mortar shop more than anything. that’s where the dream comes true for me. not online, not on my phone all day, pushing giveaways and being so fake about everything all the time. i want to be in the store, doing displays and getting to know customers. i want to see they’re faces when i show them new arrivals. i want bring them 18 different outfits to try on in the dressing room till we find “the one.”  i want to stay late cleaning up the piles of dresses the high school girls left on the floor…but had so much fun doing it. i want help the newly single mom find the perfect top for her first date in 25 years. i want to help the charming (and clueless) gentlemen find the perfect gift for his wife…and i will because she came in the day before and told me what she really wanted, and it’s on hold in the back room. these are things that used to happen all the time, and that’s what gets me going. makes me tick. i loved building a relationship with clients, and really helping them. so, one day, when my babies are a bit older and life is a bit more settled, i look forward to opening a shop again. but…for now…online business is on hold.

however, i do have this blog. i do have the IG account, and i have made some great friends through it all. so, i want to continue it, but in a whole new way. i don’t want to keep trying to be cooler than i actually am. i don’t want to show everyone how much free crap i got. but sometimes i feel like i have a lot to say, but no one to say it to. (because i have 3 friends in the whole state of washington) so what if i said it here? not that there’s a shortage of blogs, by any means- and i probably don’t have anything to offer that can’t be found on 700 million other blogs. but what if i do it anyway? with my bad grammar and punctuation, my love of all lower case letters and naughty words. my poor spelling, my off beat humor and murderous sarcasm. my endless imperfections, oddities, and all…

what if i just do it anyway?

i don’t want want to blog about DIYs and outfits. please. i don’t make anything that can’t be made out of felt and a hot glue gun. i love shopping and clothes and style, but are you kidding? i could never be a style blogger because i can’t make serious blog face. you know the face. i can’t pose for photos like a model without cracking up and feeling like a total jack ass. i love getting dressed- but i don’t love playing model. no no no. i don’t cook. so there probably won’t be too many recipes happening either.

i realize i’m not selling this blog very well. but what if i just do it anyway? what if i finally try just being myself in the online world? not selling anything. not pushing any agenda. not out to get likes and follows. what if i just open up, and be myself- even when it’s messy and not IG or pinterest worthy in any way? what if my walls aren’t white? what if my kitchen doesn’t have subway tile? what if i told you i freaking hate birkenstocks? would you stick around? sill follow and still like?

i guess we’ll find out. cause i’m gonna do it anyway.

XOXO

 

For the Love of Embroidery

June 29, 2015

OK…so maybe you know, maybe you don’t…but most of my internet existence has been with my online shoppe (I spell it with an extra P and E because it’s fancy)

www.gypsythreads.com

2 years ago I started the shoppe. I officially took a break this spring just before Walter was born.  It was just too much to try and be buying, photographing, listing, and shipping inventory and orders along side 2 kids, 2 dogs, 1 husband and 1 household all by myself. So “shoppe” is closed for now…hoping to re-open eventually…but I dunno. I am enjoying the break. ha.

Anyway…as of late, I have been getting tons of inquiries about some embroidered styles I had in the shoppe last summer. They are petty darn cute and comfortable for these dog days. I basically live in them right now.

So- after popular demand, I will be doing a pre-sale for some embroidered pieces this week on Instagram. (which I am having some serious feelings about IG lately…but more on that later)

You will find all available styles, colors, prices on my “closet sale” IG account

@gypsyclosetsale

To purchase one, leave your email in the comments below each style you would like. A PayPal invoice will be sent, and then you have 24 hours to pay the invoice to ensure your purchase. Expecting to ship mid-july $6 domestic, $15 international.

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Baby Walter Duke

May 11, 2015

baby3Well, it’s been 5 weeks since our baby Walter joined the world, and a lot longer since I blogged. Turns out, I’m really bad at blogging. Ha.

On April 7th 2015 at 10:44 in the morning, Walter Duke was born!

6 lbs 5 oz // 18 inches

Healthy. Happy. Well.

On Monday April 6th, while out for my nightly walk with Bauer, our black lab, I was having some pretty intense back pain. Not thinking it was labor pains, I kept walking. Then my water broke. So I walked faster. Made it home and made some quick arrangements for a babysitter to come be with Miles, grabbed the bag (that had been packed for 2 months…just in case) and 14 relatively quiet hours later, Walter arrived.

I feel spoiled and almost unworthy to have the blessing of experiencing 2 smooth deliveries of 2 healthy baby boys in my life. I have no words to express the relief and gratitude I feel. Other than some intense labor pain and nausea on the way to the hospital, everything went swimmingly. (I may or may not have barfed outside the window of our moving car a couple times)

Sorry, Seattle drivers.

I know a lot of women who have the strength and all mighty super power to have babies all naturally, at home, with out medicine or doctors. Good for them…

YOU GO GIRLS.

I however, am NOT one of those. And I don’t feel bad about it.

I am so grateful to live in a time with such amazing technology and experienced doctors, whom I fully put my trust in to help bring this little squirt into the world. The nurses and doctors at Swedish Medical Center in Seattle were truly fantastic, and they deserve lots of praise, treats and presents.

Adjusting to life with 2 kids has been a blur. We are tired, there’s always a pile of laundry in the corner, dishes in the sink, and always something wet on my shirt, the origin of which is anyone’s guess. Big brother Miles had a really hard time the first week. There was a lot of acting out, and he called us “Bwittany” and “Bwandon” in an angry tone instead of “Mom and Dad” for a while, but, he’s calmed down now and we’ve gained our parental titles back. We’ve all survived the first 5 weeks and things are moving right along. I have majorly slacked on taking photos. (Something I’m sure to regret in a few months when I am sad that he is big and I wish I had 500 pictures on my iPhone to cry over.) But here are a few blurry, dark ones from the hospital and from our first week at home…

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baby6babyy1baby11baby13babyy2baby14We are so happy to be a party of 4!

SAUTÉED VEGGIE & EGG SALAD

March 12, 2015

I’ve been trying really hard to eat more healthy lately. The first 6 months of this pregnancy was fueled by a lot of really bad greasy, salty, cheap fast food. For some reason the only thing that I ever had an appetite for were accompanied by fries and smothered in cheese. And then there were the donuts…

While weight gain is not a huge concern for me while pregnant (after all…that is what you are supposed to do) health, especially of the baby, is a concern, and I decided it was time to start eating healthy near the beginning of my third trimester. Better late than never?

Last summer I gave the old WHOLE 30 plan a try. I actually did it 2 times completely with no cheating. I fell in love with the changes it made in my body and mind. I found I had a surplus of energy, focus, and motivation. My skin cleared and my hair looked shinier and healthier than it had in years. I did not lose tons of pounds. This is not a “crash diet” or “cleanse” that’s going to make you drop a bunch of weight. The WHOLE 30 lifestyle is not about losing weight, but it’s about gaining health. For me, it gave me a sense of control which I don’t always have over my appetite.

So, at the beginning of my third trimester I started cutting out the crap and filling in the goods. Using the “WHOLE 30 PLAN” as a guideline, but not doing it 100% right now. I do take in some grains a few times a week. My meals mainly consist of veggies (mainly greens), proteins, and fruits. Of course I do have an occasional treat/splurge…after-all it is Cadbury Egg season…but my cravings for sweets and carbs have lessened noticeably. I eat plenty of calories and fats, but most of them are coming from clean sources. I don’t even want know how many avocados I consume in a week…

I can’t believe what a difference the last several weeks has made. I feel SO MUCH BETTER than when I was having a daily serving of Taco Bell. My energy is bursting through the roof (which for  a naturally lazy person who is 35 weeks pregnant, is amazing!) I sleep better and more solid at night, I hardly ever crave sugar. I find that I crave strawberries, oranges, and bananas above all else. It’s like a switch was flipped in my body and instead of processed sugars, it just wants natural sugars. It really is amazing. I make sure to eat a lot of fruits and vegetables, eggs, avocados, nuts, and almond butter. I eat snacks throughout the day to make sure I’m getting enough food for the baby. I drink tons of water and no soda.

Here is an example of a common lunch I eat. It’s so easy, and full of healthy things. It’s fresh and light, but leaves me feeling full and satisfied.

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Start with a pile of fresh spring mix greens on a plate.

Toss some broccoli, onion, asparagus (or carrots, peppers etc…whatever you have on hand will do!) in a pan with some olive oil or coconut oil. Add salt, pepper, and fresh garlic. Stir fry them around to your liking. Then, add a fresh chopped tomato into the hot pain. (this will add a natural sweetness) Just toss all the veggies around for about 40 seconds with the tomatoes, then dump the hot veggies onto the spring mix lettuce on your plate.

While the pan is still hot and lightly coated with the oil, crack an egg in and cook it to over-easy (I prefer over-medium) Then slide the egg off the pan onto the warm veggies.

Drizzle olive oil over the top, add salt & pepper to taste, and garnish with 1/2 an avocado.

The olive oil, hot veggies and egg yolk come together and wilt the greens a little. It Makes a yummy, easy, healthy, and “WHOLE 30 compliant” meal. It’s loaded with good fats and proteins good for baby growing, or just for you!

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ENJOY!

CLOSET SALE!

March 2, 2015

Nesting is in full bloom around here. The 6 week count down till baby has begun, and suddenly all I want to do is clean every closet, drawer, cupboard, and corner of the house. I am purging. I cleaned my closet and am having in Instagram closet sale on Monday March 2nd. @gypsyclosetsale

Here’s a mini glance at a few things that will be available. Everything is in excellent or brand new condition. First person to leave email in comments will receive a PayPal invoice within 24 hours. Invoice must be paid with 24 hours or item will go to 2nd person to leave email.

$3 shipping applied to every order + $1 per additional item.

(USA ONLY)

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XOXO