theworstbandever » Tony and Stevie

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“If the ocean can calm itself, so can you. We are both salt water mixed with air” – Nayyirah WaheedIMG_3588

We recently took a short trip to my grandparents house in Ocean City. Their house is pretty much my favorite place to visit. We get long heartfelt hugs, simple meals full of wholesome food, slow afternoons and time to recharge. It’s just so peaceful. And even though they live so close to the beach we hardly ever make it out there outside of a quick walk. Despite the fact that I have felt a pull to the ocean for the last 3 years. Truthfully I haven’t been very good at trusting my gut lately. Usually because it seems silly, or trivial, I don’t want to put other people out, or I just plain ole can’t make a decision.

But this trip we made time for the ocean. And as silly as it may sound it was everything I didn’t know I needed. I can’t describe how good it felt to be by the ocean.   The waves, the sand, the sun, the smell, the crashing sounds.

These photos are from our 3rd trip to the beach in one day.

045048051055I love love love this next one056058062Rosie’s wild beach hair was amazing.065068070073077078079083086091092094

I didn’t bring my camera to the beach during the day but Rosie LOVED the sand.  She could play for hours with a bucket and shovel and was covered head to toe as soon as she was able to wiggle out of our arms.  It was heaven.

I’m already aching to be back to the ocean.  Luckily I only have to wait 15 more days.  🙂

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Happy Father’s Day to the my sweet husband.  It has been a crazy 16 months adjusting to the whirlwind of being a father and you continuously blow me away with your patience and gentleness.  Watching you parent our daughter makes me fall in love with you more and more every day.  And seeing Rosie’s face light up when you come into a room makes my heart explode.  Rosie and I are so lucky to have you.   And we love you more than you could ever know. Oliver Family0059Oliver Family0058Oliver Family0065Photos by Jeremy Parsons of www.wearetheparsons.com   These 3 photos were my favorite photos of the whole bunch and I want to blow them up HUGE on the wall!

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Oliver Family0010 copyI’ve never had a real vision for this blog .. It’s just a little online journal that Tony and I started when we first got together.   Just a little photo chronicle of our lives together.  It’s never really been for anyone although it was shared and viewed by a handful of our family and friends.  We would share the link on FB and get all excited when someone ‘liked’ or commented on it.   But over time it started to stress me out.  I kept feeling the need to post stuff for some unknown audience and feel anxious over the pile of stuff that I haven’t yet shared.   It was always in the back of my mind.

Then yesterday I sat down and shared a little post and once I hit ‘publish’ I realized no one was probably going to see it.  I had stopped sharing things on FB and instagram and the app that used to automatically share it on FB has recently become defunct so there my post sat .. alone and unviewed in the sea of the internet.  And I’m embarrassed to admit that it really bugged me.   Like what was the point of posting something if no one was going to see it and validate me for it.  Blech!  What an embarrassingly stupid thought.

So I’m going to get over myself and not get caught up in who sees it or who ‘likes’ it.   This will be a place where I can share my own thoughts on motherhood, marriage, life etc.  A place where I can share photos and adventures of our itty bitty family.  An online journal so we can scroll back and remember all these fleeting moments that are happening.

So here are a few things that are happening in our current lives so that I can remember them…

Rosie started walking at 15 months and it’s a whole new world of toddlerhood now.  She is the most fun ever at this age!  More and more personality every day!

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She is such a little lover and is really into her babies and stuffed bunny and will kiss everything with a face on it.  With a loud ‘mmwwaaa!’   She gives out so many kisses and she will NOT accept it when someone turns their face to offer her a cheek.  She demands kisses on the lips.  And she gives legitimate hugs now.  The kind that wraps around your neck and have her hands clasped together in the back.  I can’t even describe how magical it feels.  You could end a war with Rosie’s hugs I’m sure of it.

She says ‘What’s that?’ 589 times by lunch time.

Teaching her sign language was the best decision we have made and it has helped tremendously in communicating with her.  She can sign for milk, more, eat, all done, water, again, help and chicken.   It saves her (and us) from a lot of frustration and she doesn’t have to cry or grunt to try to express what she wants.  If she wants water she asks for water.  Which is great because I am always forgetting to offer her water.  🙂Oliver Family0055 copyI’m having the first ‘good hair day’ that I have had in months.  🙂

We are taking a social media break.  I’ll write more on that separately someday.  But with all the extra time that we used to waste scrolling through FB and instagram we are reading, talking, dreaming, gardening, focusing and overall being way more productive!  Not to mention we are WAY happier now that we aren’t constantly comparing our lives and work with others.

We are working hard to find some work / life balance .. which is not actually a thing.  It’s never actually balanced.  But we are working hard to figure some things out.  Figure out our time wasters and energy wasters and working so hard to eliminate them.  We are fighting like hell to give Rosie and our marriage the attention they deserve.  I’ll share more things once we figure some out but for right now I have 2 words .. Grocery Delivery.  🙂

Rosie is sleeping through the night.  I repeat Rosie is sleeping through the night.  Praise the Lord-hallelujah-shout it from the roof tops our 16 month old baby is FINALLY sleeping through the night!!!!    I silently let it happen for 2 weeks before actually mentioning it out loud lest it all be taken away from us.  But it’s actually happening.  Everyone kept saying she will do it when she’s ready and I guess she’s finally ready.  I think the credit should go to Joe Vitale since I was listening to his audio book ‘The Attractor Factor” for a few weeks while driving miss Rosie around.  And I know she was listening because on day he said said the word ‘monkey’ and Rosie started making monkey noises in the backseat.   I think she just needed to ‘get cleared of her blocks’ about sleeping through the night and allow it to come to her.  snort.  We are a more than a little bit into all the self-help, better yourself, motivational audio books these days.

It’s actually ironic that I mention her sleeping today of all days since last night she woke up once in the middle of the night.  But she has a tooth breaking through as we speak so it’s throwing her off a bit.  Doesn’t count.

We are 13 months in to our big Debt Payoff Journey.   And we are absolutely kicking ass at it!!  I’m proud to say that we have paid off $52,000 since May 1st 2014.  We still have a ways to go but in less than a year we will be free of absolutely all of our debt .. student loans included!!!  Then we will owe nothing .. to anybody!!

And to come back to Rosie’s sleep again .. when you are a parent apparently sleeping IS all you can talk about .. she is napping like a dream lately too.  2 long glorious naps during the day.  I know there are a million parents out there, including very close friends of mine, who are in the thick of kids that fight sleep so I never mention it.  But I’ve paid my dues.  I’m not one of those ‘oh my child slept in their crib since they were 6 weeks old’ kind of moms.  I’m one of those ‘I’ve cried, begged and pleaded and screamed into a pillow desperate for 20 minutes of consecutive sleep for well over a year’ kind of moms.    I know it can all change in an instant but right now we are in a sweet spot with sleep and I am very very consciously grateful for each day that it continues.

We have an awesome babysitter named Amelia who watches Rosie 2-3 days a week now so I can have uninterrupted work time.  She’s amazing and Rosie adores her!  We are grateful for every day that we have her.  I LOVE being able to hear Rosie squealing and laughing downstairs with Amelia while I’m upstairs working in my office.  It makes it so much easier to focus on work when I know how happy Rosie is with Amelia.

I’m working on my anxiety level every day.  I’ve had major anxiety, bouts with depression and some overall anger issues for a little while now (my whole life actually, but maybe they have just been more bothersome since I’ve become a mother)  I had an unhealthy reaction one day when I noticed that Tony had opened a pack of shredded cheese that I had reserved for something else.  It wasn’t pretty and Rosie was it’s only witness.  I found myself googling ‘nervous breakdown’ almost immediately.  I have up and downs several times a week but I’m working hard to figure myself out.  But who isn’t?

I’m tired and should probably be napping since I am not working today and Rosie is sleeping but instead I’m drinking old coffee and dumping my brain on here.  It’s actually kind of therapeutic.

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All photos in this post are by Jeremy Parsons of www.wearetheparsons.com   He, and his wife Ashley photographed our wedding and grateful doesn’t even come close to what we feel for these images.  We have hundreds more from this session and I plan to share more as well as wallpaper our house in them.

  • Michele Mathe - I read your post! I follow you on bloglovin..

    Rosie is so big! The hair! Can she come teach Ava the sign for chicken:-)

    Congrats on paying off 52k in debt!! Huge accomplishment!!

    We should get the girls together soon!!ReplyCancel

    • Stevie - Hey!!! Thanks for your comment 🙂 yes, let’s get the girls together!! We would love to see you guys. How about next week?ReplyCancel

  • Miranda - i read it!!! Happy for all your changes. Keep up the good work!ReplyCancel

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So in my last post I said I was taking a break from social media .. but also that I would be posting more regularly here.  Well, I only did one of those things.  And while I know no one is losing sleep over the lack of Rosie photos (except our family of course) I’ve also gotten a few great messages and emails checking in and letting me know that they were thinking of us, missed us or just wanted to catch up.

I keep wanting to post on here but then I get overwhelmed by all the things I want to write .. the mountain of photos I want to share.  Plus it’s wedding season and we have a crazy toddler running around and and and …

So I’m just going to jump right in with a few photos from yesterday morning…

Rosie and I planted a garden .. and by Rosie and I, I mean I planted a garden while she took a nap.   And Rosie and I water it .. and by Rosie and I, I mean I water it while she runs around picking off all the green tomatoes that her little hands can grab.   Yesterday we had our first ripe strawberry … well 3rd… damn birds!!  But it was OUR first strawberry.   So of course I documented our harvest.
IMG_6146 copyIMG_6148 copyIMG_6149 copyIMG_6151 copyIMG_6150 copyWhere did our little baby go???

Oh and before you say ‘Hey, isn’t it currently a balmy 90 degrees in Baltimore this time of year?’ Yes, yes it is but Rosie has inherited her momma’s ability to attract all mosquitos to her in 10 seconds so our morning gardening is spent in full protective clothing.

I’ll post more soon .. or at least I will try.  🙂

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Tony and I have been taking a little step away from Instagram and Facebook lately so we haven’t shared any personal photos over there in a few weeks.  (It’s ok if you haven’t noticed)   We are just trying to spend less time on our phones and social media and more time focusing on our little family.  Tony is actually doing a LOT better job of it than I am.  More on all that later.

One of the goals for  me was to spend more time taking photos with my ‘real’ camera and less taking photos with my phone and slapping an instagram filter over them.  So far so good .. I have about 1000 photos of recent and now I just need to actually find the time to process and share some .

Rosie and I are currently spending the week at my grandparents house in Ocean City.  An unintentional escape from the craziness that is happening in Baltimore just a few miles from our home.   Here are a few random images from our peaceful days here.

001 002 003 004 005 006 007 008 009 010Rosie is finally starting to look more like me!  Thank you strong hair genes.
011 012 013 014 The bond between Rosie and her great-grandpa Willie is so strong.  I love to see them together.  015 016 I hope to be sharing a lot more photos and life over on this little corner of the internet.  So if you want to see any of our personal photos and are inclined to follow along please bookmark our site and come back to see us.  🙂

love,

The Olivers

 

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