Friday, July 29, 2016

Happy Third Birthday, Skylor!

Three years ago I waddled into the labor and delivery room at 8pm, praying I was over 5cm dilated. I had been walking around at 4cm for two weeks and taking care of a toddler like that is exhausting! Sure enough I was at a 6 and admitted. About 4 hours later with a push, a laugh and a smile you were here! Born at 37 weeks you were a whopping 8lbs 6 ounces! I was in awe at how easy it all was this time around!

From the beginning Sky has always been an easy, go with the flow baby. He was easy to feed, easy to soothe, and easy to put down for bed.  I wore him everywhere we went, he rarely got upset and took Tracen's 2 year old rough housing like a champ. He will play in his crib for hours, reading books, and playing with his stuffed animals. When he's ready he will yell for you to come get him, giddy with excitement he always says I SO HAPPY TO SEE YOU!

His personality shines through his smile but he's very mellow kid (this may sound like an oxymoron but it's not!) He hates the sun, is very much a homebody, quite the opposite of a true Leo baby! His emotions are big when he is enjoying something, he will squeal with excitement about it being soooooo good or sooooo fun! When you're not expecting it, he will say I need a hug and hug you so hard and smile afterwards. He loves Ducati and Jerek the most, would lay around on the couch with them for days if he could. 

Sky is sweet and light hearted, a lover of food and smiles! Everyone always says Tracen looks like Jerek but it's uncanny how much Skylor and him look alike at this age! The days go by so fast and I remember this very moment as if it was yesterday! I can't believe you are already three baby Sky Sky!














Sometimes I wonder why I do this to myself! Rummaging through all the old photos and videos makes me so incredibly emotional! But also SO happy that I've been documenting it all and not just via photos but through videos too. Videos show stories and emotions that can sometimes be lost in photos years later. We are having his party on Sunday and surprising him with a new helmut and scooter! Like most things with second kids, he gets a lot of hand me downs. I figured hopefully something shiny and new will up his excitement and maybe get him to walk again. He got his cast off last week and has yet to walk, so fingers crossed!

Happy birthday Skylor Vance, to the littlest of my house of boys!

Wednesday, July 27, 2016

A Weekend in Nashville

best_nashville_guide
At the beginning of June I planned a belated 30th birthday trip for Jerek and I to go on. His birthday was the day before we left for Mexico and since we were busy getting ready I felt like we didn't properly celebrate. Having a destination wedding and already having kids we didn't have a 'normal honeymoon' like a lot of people do. We had an amazing wedding and trip as a family but I knew we would want some alone time for a couple days so I planned a little get away!

I looked into a ton of different cities but kept coming back to Nashville. I had been watching Alex's vlogs while she lived in Nashville and had been chatting with Helene about places to go and decided Nashville was it! I wanted a place we could drive to in a weekend but really was hoping to score some cheap flights. For some reason flights out of Michigan were hella expensive so we drove. Jerek didn't know where we were going until the day before we left. It was SUPER hard keeping it a secret too!
I_believe_in_nashville_sign
We dropped the kids off at his parents Thursday night and we drove half way and stayed in Columbus for the night. We got up bright and early and finished the drive and arrived in Nashville just in time for lunch. First stop was The Flipside. Helene had raved about the Bloody Mary's here but we were starving so we ordered lunch and a beer and enjoyed the open windows and sunshine.
flipside_nashville
I had most things for the weekend planned out like a pure nutcase. I legit had all the places I wanted to eat and drink at for every meal, snack and cocktail! I knew that I didn't want to play our standard 'where do you want to go? I don't know, where do you want to go?' game because we ALWAYS play it and no one wants to do that on a vacation with a limited timeframe!
famous_nashville_bridge
We went down the road to have a cocktail at Urban Grub which was cute, trendy and hipster all at once, that's a thing right? After a delicious grapefruit craft beer we headed to our cute little Airbnb to check in and drop our stuff off.

We swam and relaxed by the pool for a bit and then got ready to go back out to the bars to listen to some live music and grab a bite to eat. I didn't have any specific plans for dinner (shocking!) so we wondered in and out of restaurants listing to music having a drink and then moving on to the next bar. Basically we bar hopped and I don't really do that anymore but it felt great! It was nice not to have to shovel food down your throat because someone is about to loose their shit!

There was a downpour for a bit so we posted up in a bar and waited the rain out; chatting, cheers-ing beers and indulging in apps. I got a little drunk and thought it was absolutely insane that you could walk diagnal (IE: Jay walk) and had to vlog us doing so but kept calling it "digitalling." You can watch the vlog here to laugh at me further! We called for an uber (get a free ride when you click the link and sign up) and were back in the Airbnb by midnight; party animals I tell ya!

how_to_rent_city_bikes
Saturday morning we woke up and got ready to head out, I had the entire day planned. First stop was a coffee shop that people always rave about called The Frothy Monkey. We got there just in time because the line was out the door once we got our coffee! After we were caffeinated we headed downtown to a place called Another Broken Egg where I got THE best black bean bendict!
frothy_monkey_nashville
best_nashville_bridges
Downtown Nashville was amazing in the morning. The streets were insanely clean and live music was being played everywhere, even at 10am, it was awesome! We walked around and popped in an out of shops. We jumped back in our car and headed to Cumberland Pedestrian Bridge where we long boarded under tunnels and over bridges. This was also where I jumped off my longboard going way too fast, slipped on the dewy grass and gashed my knee up really bad. I taped a women's pad around my knee and we kept going #bosslady.
where_to_go_in_nashville
nashville_guide
We headed to John Seigenthaler bridge for a standard Nashville tourist picture and within seconds of taking the photo it started to down pour so we ran back to our car and headed to Centennial Park to see the Parthenon replica. We walked around for a bit and stumbled upon a cute college bar called Jeds, where there were games of bags being played and cute dogs lounging on the patio. We had a couple cocktails and again, soaked in the sun and the fact that we weren't rushed to be anywhere at any time.
parthanon_replica
nashville_weekend
nashville_weekend
We headed back to the 12 South area for a late lunch at Bar Taco. A place I kept hearing about and the tacos were as good as I expected. They reminded me of Imperial in Ferndale (if you live in Southeast Michigan and frequent that fine fine establishment you'll understand!) We attempted to ride off all the food we ate by renting city bikes and headed to Las Paleta’s for a home made Popsicle, those also didn't disappoint!
bar_taco_best_tacos
Back to the Airbnb we went to take a nap, shower and get ready for dinner. If you're wondering if we did anything besides eat the answer is yes, we also drank. As I've gotten older my absolute favorite thing to do is to enjoy good food and good company and I'm pretty partial to Jerek so the two went hand in hand. We weren't really feeling the downtown Nashville bar scene (IE: grandma status) again so we went to a beer garden and burger joint called The Pharmacy. The outdoor seating area was what everyone dreams about. Bistro lights hung in all directions, large picnic tables and greenery everywhere, it was glorious. We hailed an uber back and face planted in bed since we had to be up early for the long drive back home.

Sunday morning wasn't glamorous, we packed up and started the 8 hour drive back home to the boys. Thankfully we didn't hit any construction or traffic, which I'm still not sure HOW we pulled that one off but we did!

Over all the trip was exactly what I hoped it would be! It was fun and relaxing, romantic and semi spontaneous and exactly what we needed, a weekend just devoted to Jerek and I. If you haven't seen the travel vlog of the weekend you can check it out here or below to see everything I talk about but with your own two eyes!

I hope you enjoyed our weekend recap, although its been almost two months, sorry about that! If you are contemplating spending a weekend in Nashville I highly suggest finding an Airbnb, they are MUCH cheaper than any hotel you will find downtown. Take Uber's, so you don't have to pay for parking or fight the masses to find spots downtown. It costs us about $5 to and from our rental; much cheaper than a DUI or parking tickets! Go with plans but also be open to wandering around the beautiful city and taking in the charm Nashville has!

We'll be back Nashville and with a whole new list of places to eat at!

Monday, July 18, 2016

Weekend Wrapup



Every Sunday without fail, we will utter, but I don't want the weekend to end! This weekend was no exception. I started Friday off by not putting clothes on for work and working at home since Skylor isn't going to daycare till his cast is off (5 more days!) I only had one lash appointment to do Friday so I was done by the time Jerek and Tracen got home. We savagely ate some pizza on our patio and then headed to downtown Birmingham for some froyo and park time before bed. Shain park was filled with kids, first dates and some major Pokemon Go freaks, just head deep in their phones running into fountains and shit. I posted our wedding video with photos on Friday if you haven't seen that you can check that out here. I will have the last Mexico travel video up sometime this week before I get knee deep in wedding's I'm shooting these next few months, so stay tuned!

Saturday we headed Home Depot to grab some random stuff for the garden and flooring that Jerek is working on. I know I can be pretty damn bias'd but Trey and Sky are literally the cutest! Sky kept saying he was cold and the next thing I know I turn around and Tracen had his blanket wrapped around him. I had to stop pushing the cart real quick and snap the photo because I mean, why wouldn't you! I spent the rest of the day hanging out with girlfriend and her son, cleaning the house, doing all the laundry and keeping the kids busy while Jerek worked on the flooring. I think I mentioned this before but we are re-doing the back family room. He's been working on the flooring and has one more small section to finish up but it's looking AMAZING!!! I can not wait to show you before and after photos!

I scooped up some amazing Nordstrom anniversary deals online that I'm excited about! Unlike most store sales, it's not the summer stuff on sale, its the stuff for the fall as a hey here's a preview of the fall stuff, buy me now before it's full price type thing. So I snagged this, this and this! Basic I know, but I have been rocking the capsule wardrobe for 6 months now and if I've learned anything it's to accessorize with hats, shoes and jewelry to change up outfits.


Sunday we got up and headed out to a (free!) splash pad/park with Jerek's sisters and kids to let them all play in the amazing weather we've been having. Since Sky broke his leg I try to not say we can't do things because of it. I found this waterproof cast bag at Walgreen's so I got one and we've been putting it on any time he plays with the water table, goes to the pool, takes a bath or in this case, goes to the splash pad!

We brought our smaller stroller and wheeled him all through the water. He kept saying I having so much fun in da water mommy! He was so genuinely happy it in turn made me really happy. We try and take him to the park and put him on the slide and catch him, walk up the play structure, get him involved and play as much as he can. It's been a very humbling experience and I've realize how lucky we are that this is only a temporary thing, that he isn't permanently unable to walk. We headed to Mbrew for a cocktail on the patio because hashtag summer, and if we're going to be frank here the food was blah and I can buy any Michigan beer they serve at a local store. I don't think we'll be back, with or without kids, sorry Mbrew. We finished off the night with Sunday family dinner at Jerek's parents and I was in bed by 945pm fast asleep!

Hope you had a great weekend, enjoyed the weather and had a patio cocktail or two! I have 3 weddings to film the next 3 weeks so I'm going to be a tad busy but I love it! Don't forget to subscribe to my YouTube channel to be notified when the last Mexico video goes up this week!

xx Chel