Tuesday, May 31, 2016

Chloe Grace: 10 Months Old


I'm not sure why, but 10 months seems like a big milestone. Maybe it's because we've hit double digit months? Maybe it's because we're only 60 days away from her first birthday. We had a rough time getting her "official" 10 month pictures this month. She wasn't having it and I tried on 3 separate occasions. We are definitely in a "I need my mommy" stage, and she just wasn't having pictures this weekend!


This month's theme is definitely on the go. Last month I mentioned that she could almost crawl. Just a few days later, she took off. I thought we may skip the crawling stage all together. Even though she is very capable of crawling, she doesn't do it often and she certainly doesn't like doing it. In fact, she cries the entire time she's crawling! It's kind of hilarious to me because it's not a hurting or scared cry. It's not even a sad cry, it's a "I don't want to do this, please pick me up or let me walk" kind of cry. The second you grab her she's smiling. Little brat.


She's been able to pull up and cruise on furniture for about two months now, but since she learned how to crawl, she's even faster when cruising along furniture. She's also much more daring. When we returned home from San Francisco, she was pulling up on her than just her toy box and she was cruising between pieces of furniture. From the table to the couch to my leg to the other couch, so on and so forth. She can also walk only holding one of our hands! I think she'll be taking off before we know it! If only she could figure out that it's easier to walk when you bend your knees. We'll get there my little peg leg.


Chloe's absolute favorite thing in the world: Water. Last month I said it was one of her favorite things. This month I can confirm that it is her absolute favorite. It is the one thing that can make her happy when she's sad. It stops her fussing on even the fussiest of days. Her face lights up like a kid on Christmas morning. She smiles the whole time she's playing with water. It doesn't matter if she's playing with a puddle, putting her feet in, playing in a baby pool or getting in the big pool in her float. She's always happy! I can't wait to start swim lessons in June with this little water baby.


Another theme from this last month is teething! We went from having 2 teeth to 6 teeth in a matter of weeks. All four top teeth came in over the course of two weeks. We saw her gums swell and the little pearl buds at right around 9 months. On May 1st her top left incisor came in and just a few days later her top right front tooth came through. The little gap was adorable, but it didn't last long because just under a week later the top left front tooth broke through. The other incisor came in on her daddy's birthday, so over 16 days we got 4 new teeth. I'm glad they're all in because those were a rough two weeks that's for sure.


Attitude. So much attitude. This girl has a lot of spunk. She's very determined and knows exactly what she wants. She also knows how to get it. She's very strong willed and has a pretty solid set of lungs on her. It's safe to say she has all of us very wrapped around her finger! She thinks blowing raspberries and spitting is hilarious. In fact, when I tell her I love her, I usually get a raspberry in the face. I'm not sure if it's nice or mean yet, but I'll pretend for now that it means I love you too.


This month's firsts:
  • First time in the big pool at Nonna and Grandpa's 
  • First couples wedding shower for Auntie Em and Uncle Matt 
  • First Mother's Day! 
  • First girls trip to Coushatta for her Nonna's birthday 
  • First actual crawl 
  • First time to celebrate Daddy's birthday 
  • First time away from both Mommy and Daddy for several days 
  • First sleep over with Jojo 
  • First time to meet her baby BFF, Renee Crowson 
  • First 4 top teeth

My Darling Chloe Grace,

Man you're a little spit fire these days! You definitely have a mind of your own and you're not afraid to tell us what you want and how we should do it. You can be pretty exhausting sometimes, but it's a challenge I'm willing to take on for you baby girl. 

This month you've been all over the place. Crawling is probably one of your least favorite things to do, but you're still doing it. I know that you're ready to be able to walk around on your own though. I'm not sure if I'm ready for you to walk around or not. On one hand you can be more independent, on the other hand, you're going to get into everything. I can see it already. Luckily, I can't think of another human alive I'd be willing to chase after and clean up after all the time. You're pretty fabulous!

I'm looking forward to these summer days coming up! You're love for the water is amazing. We're going to start swim lessons soon and I hope that they'll help me teach you more since we'll be swimming a lot! We're lucky to have Nonna and Grandpa's swimming pool so close to us on these hot Houston days. I'm also dying to take you to the beach. Maybe one day soon we'll have a free day that we can just escape with your daddy and have some fun. I'm interested to see how you do in the salty ocean water!

This past month we dealt with your first real sickness and our first (few) trips to the doctor that weren't for your regular check ups. It was hard on my momma heart to see you hurting! At first we thought a lot of it was teething because your nose was so runny and eyes so red. Then the ear tugging came and I knew we needed to get it checked out. Of course it was a double ear infection and bronchiolitis! My poor girl. You handled your cross with grace as always. No matter how bad you were feeling there was always a smile here and there. You're such a strong little girl!

I'm so proud of you my princess. I am constantly in awe of how amazing you are. Watching you grow up these last 10 months has been a treasure. I'm so lucky to be your mommy. God is good and he loves you more than you know. Only two more months until your birthday little girl. Momma has some planning to do. Until then, you just keep doing you girl. I'm ready to handle whatever it is you throw at me!

I love you forever,
Momma

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Friday, May 27, 2016

Friday Five Favorite Moments

Happy FriYay! I've got some fun stuff coming up today, so I'm going to keep it short. I'm behind on my pre-posting schedule because of my trip! So worth it. Speaking of my trip, here's another sneak peek because that's my first few favorite moments this week!


one. Sunday we walked all over the place in San Francisco! This was just before we were about to board a boat to take us over to visit Alcatraz Island. I took so many pictures at Alcatraz on my DSLR that I can't wait to share with y'all. First I need to find some time in my life to go through all of them! Time...what's time?


two. Monday we went for a run along The Embarcadero. I talked about how I try to go for a run in most new cities that I visit on Wednesday. San Francisco was no exception! I love that JP is such a great sport when it comes to running with me. 6 years ago, he wouldn't have been as thrilled about the experience. I'm so proud of him for finding a love for running simply because his bride enjoys it. It's a special adventure that we can participate in together and I love it! It's usually one of the highlights of my trip because I'm a nerd like that.


three. Monday morning after our run, we had our last meal in San Francisco and this was too delicious not to write about! We looked up good breakfast joints near our hotel and Pat's Cafe was rated very highly on Trip Advisor. Not just as a breakfast place, but it was #36 out of over 5,000 restaurants in the area! Oh my goodness, I'm so glad we went! The coffee was good and the food was amazing. JP had the Chilaquiles and I had Chocolate Peanut Butter Pancakes with fruit on top. Obviously I made the better choice. They had several different pancake flavors and I was tempted to have the pecan pumpkin spice, but couldn't resist my favorite flavor combination. If you're headed to SF, Pat's Cafe is a must stop for a good hearty breakfast or brunch!


four. Seeing this girl on Tuesday morning for the first time since Thursday night was by far the BEST part of my week hands down. The way her face lit up when she woke up and saw that it was her momma coming to get her. Of course shortly after she proceeded to cry at me. I know she was just telling me that she missed me and that she was upset that I left her. After she got that out of her system and we had a nice, long nursing session, she was a happy girl for her momma. A very needy girl who wouldn't let her mom out of her sight, but happy nonetheless. Spending my days with my Chloe girl are my favorite. I have the coolest best friend in the world.


five. I couldn't choose just one picture for my fifth favorite moment this week, so y'all get three. Yesterday I went out and about running errands with my sassy princess. We had to go to my favorite nail salon to get a gift card for Ashley's birthday. Well Chloe was asleep and being so good that I decided to just go for it and get a pedicure while I was there! She woke up literally 2 minutes after we walked in the door. I got her out of her carseat and she sat and snuggled and played the whole time. She got fussy at one point and I just nursed her. The other ladies around we were moms and so supportive. They kept complimenting how good and beautiful she was which made this momma's heart soar. Afterwards, we headed to Ashley's to visit with our best girls! Ali came over with brand new baby Renee! She's absolutely gorgeous, and I'm so excited she's here. She makes Chloe look like a giant baby, and it's hard to remember her that small. We spent over 4 hours just lounging and talking which was the perfect way to spend a rainy afternoon. I have the best friends.

So there you have it. My best moments are pretty much San Francisco and hanging with my girl! My life is so good and my heart is so full. Now for a long, relaxing weekend with my favorite people and pups. This one is for chilling out and taking it easy. We'll see if I can actually stick to that! Have a wonderful and safe Memorial Day weekend y'all!




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Thursday, May 26, 2016

Life Lately...

Hi there friends! Today I thought I'd just share a little about the life of Amy as of lately because I'm nosy and want to know what others are doing, so maybe someone is interested in this crazy life of mine!

Lately I've been...

reading The Martian and Stiff. Yes, two books at one time. I have my travel/poolside book and my bathtub book. Both are absolutely fabulous. The Martian has been turned into a movie recently which I have yet to see. Probably because I wanted to read the book first! My dad recommended it and let me borrow it. So far, so good and I'm almost done! Stiff is actually a book I'm borrowing from my sister about cadavers. That's right, you read it, cadavers. As in human cadavers. It's funny, witty and a great read. I can't wait to review both of them for y'all! Anything I should read next?

listening to Kelsea Ballerini Peter Pan, Justin Bieber Love Yourself, Florida Georgia Line Confession & HOLY, Taylor Swift Out of the Woods, and Mickey Mouse Club House The Hot Dog Song. I wish I was joking about the last one, but she loves it. It makes Chloe laugh, dance and it entertains her. In case you were wondering, there is a video on YouTube that plays it over and over again for an hour. We listened to it for 15 minutes yesterday. 15 minutes of Hot Dog, hot dog, hot diggity dog. The things you do for your babies!
source

watching Dancing with the Stars (at least I was), Game of Thrones, The Bachelorette, Once Upon a Time, Dance Moms, anything on HGTV...swoon. Oh yeah, and Mickey Mouse Club House...duh.

thinking about all the changes and excitement that life is bringing over the next several months. My youngest brother Matt is graduating in May and off to college at Lamar University in August. My sister is getting married in just over 3 weeks! My older of my younger brothers Ben is moving across the WORLD to Taipei, Taiwan in August. My baby girl turns one in July! I mean there is just so much going on!


looking forward to Charlotte coming to Houston in just 6 days! She'll be her for 3 weeks to celebrate Emily's wedding festivities and she's staying with me! I mean, my house is practically home to her since she lived with us for 6 months in 2013. She'll be back in her old room, it's just a little bit pinker and babier these days. This is the longest time we've spent apart from each other since before I got married. I can't wait for her to get here for all of our seester shenanigans to begin!



working out about 5 times a week! Score!
Last week's workouts:

Wednesday (5/18): 100 Pyramid workout (see below)
Thursday (5/19): Rest
Friday (5/20): Bike 15+ miles around San Francisco! + 160 squats
Saturday (5/21): Rest +180 Squats
Sunday (5/22): Walk 7+ miles around San Francisco! +185 squats
Monday (5/23): Run 3.5 miles along The Embarcadero Drive
Tuesday (5/24): Teach Kickboxing {I did 20 minutes} + 190 Squats
Wednesday (5/25): Teach Kickboxing {I did 45 minutes} + 220 squats


wishing time would slow down. It's flying by with so much to do. Luckily it's because I have much to look forward to these next few months, but my baby girl is growing up before my eyes! She's crawling, pulling up, cruising around all of our furniture, babbling and becoming more independent. Where did my tiny, squishy newborn baby go? She'll be 10 months old this weekend, so I've got to get ready for her next update!


ready for Emily's bachelorette party in two weeks from today! Get ready ladies, New Braunfels doesn't know what's coming. It's going to be a blast!

happy that I have a week off of work! The good thing about working only on Mondays and Wednesdays is that when you have a Monday holiday, you get a week off. A week to spend snuggling my favorites at home!

What have y'all been up to lately?
Any books, songs, shows I should check out?

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Wednesday, May 25, 2016

Fun Workouts on Vacation

I'm back and slowly getting into action. We got home late Monday night and yesterday was filled with catching up on house work, smothering my girl with love, subbing a kickboxing class and errands! I haven't been in my computer to upload pictures let alone play around in this little space! So here I am typing to y'all from my phone at work during our down time! I obviously want to wait to share the awesome pictures and details from our trip, but that will take a little bit of time. Instead I wanted to share with y'all how I stay fit and active on vacation.

Don't get me wrong, I know that sometimes you just need to rest and relax. Especially on vacation, right? But there are always some awesome ways to explore a city or beach or countryside wherever you are while getting in a good workout!


Biking
There are so many bike friendly cities out there! Check and see if there is a bike tour or a shop that rents out bikes for self tours. Some cities are easier to navigate on your own. Do some research and see if a self guided ride is for you and you can save some money there! Plus you won't be paying for any other transportation that day!


Let's start with San Fransisco. I made plans to ride bikes on our first day there! I don't like sitting for long periods of time and that's pretty much required on a plane, so getting out and about to explore is always on my to do list for day 1 on vacation! SF is incredibly bike friendly. We chose to do the self guided tour, so we were given a map, a route and recommended stops along the way! We rode through the Presidio, Chrissy Field, stopped along the beach, visited the Fort Point for the most gorgeous view of the bridge, rode over the Golden Gate Bridge, to Salsalito! Then we explored on foot for a while, did some shopping and eating before taking the ferry back to San Fransisco. 


Next time you book a trip see if biking is an option! You'll be glad you did it. It was probably the best part of my trip!

Running
I know not everyone is a runner, but you can walk/jog around to see a new area! I try to go on a run during every trip I take. I find that I see more, take more in and the run goes by so fast because I'm distracted by everything around me. 


It's also interesting to see how your body handles working out in different climates! Above was a run I went on in Golden, CO. Hello altitude! The weather felt great, but my lungs were killing me! I loved running around Colorado School of Mines campus and exploring their little city on foot. 

I know beaches are usually for relaxing, but a run or power walk on the beach can get your heart rate up and work some leg muscles that you didn't even know existed! 

Some of my favorite places to run were in Lillehammer and Rome! Here's a shot from Norway because I loved the trails so much!


Hiking
Visiting a city with hilly or mountainous terrain? Go for a hike! You're bound to see some amazing scenery and things you wouldn't see from a vehicle. Since I'm from a city whose hills are mostly on and off ramps from a freeway, I love getting the chance to hike and explore this way. Best hiking experience to date was in Bergen, Norway. Good company also makes the hike even better!


Walking
Try to get a hotel that is closer so some of the things you want to see. This way you can walk instead of catching a cab or public transportation. The more you're moving the more you can counteract all the delicious food you're eating on your trip. We love to walk as much as possibles on vacation. I feel so accomplished 


In London we used the hop on and off bus tours to get us around town for a couple of days. Instead of the just staying on the bus, we took advantage of the hop on and off bit! We would hop off and explore a large area. Walk around, skip some stops and hop back on when our next destination was far away or we needed a break. It was a great option for us and we were able to see more than we would just driving by! 

There are also TONS of walking tours in most cities! If you like tours for sight seeing, then go for it! We did a walking tour to see the monuments in Washington D.C. and I learned so much!

Gym Time
I personally try to find ways to be active that don't involve the gym on vacation. Of course, I work in a gym, so it makes sense. But if you need to squeeze in a workout because it's going to be a pretty sedentary day, then this is a great option! 

Getting into a workout routine can be so hard. It's even harder to workout on vacation, but there are so many ways to make it fun! It's all about getting out and moving!

What are some ways that you workout while on vacation? 
What's your favorite vacation "workout" to date?

Friday, May 20, 2016

Hello San Francisco!


Look where I am! We're here and ready to have some F.U.N! If you want to follow along on my journey, make sure you follow me on Instagram: @acgougler

I'm pretty sure the sights won't disappoint. Plus you'll get to see these bright smiling faces!


I'll be back on the blog Tuesday! Have a fabulous weekend y'all. I know I will!

Xoxo,
Amy

Thursday, May 19, 2016

Watch out West...

...because here we come! That's right, the Gougler's are headed West to San Fransisco. We're getting up earlier than I would get up for work (3:30am) and will be taking off before most of Houston is even awake. I'm beyond excited to explore the city and the adventures that it has to offer!

This is going to be our first trip without our little Chloe along with us. I've only been away from her for roughly 48 hours back in February when I went on my Kyani work conference. This time will be double that! We are dropping her off with my parents tonight since we leave so early tomorrow morning. I know it will be hard, but more importantly, it is exactly what JP and I need! It's so important to remember to focus on each other and our marriage. After all, it's because we love each other so much that we brought her into this world!

Okay, enough sap, I don't want to think about leaving my baby, but as a nursing mom, I have no choice but to think of her constantly! If you are or have ever breastfed a baby, you know where I'm coming from. Several years ago, I shared my travel essentials for a transatlantic flight. Today, I thought I'd let you in on what's packed in my carry on these days! Needless to say, there are some things that are VERY different.


Nursing Mom Travel Essentials




  • Longchamp Le Pilage Tote: Y'all this this is amazing. I received it as a gift almost 3 years ago and it is holding up in great condition. It holds so much, is easy to clean, looks cute with almost every outfit and can withstand the wear and tear of travel.
  • iPhone & iPad: Pretty self explanatory. Needed for mindless games, reading and so much more once you get to your destination!
  • Nikon DSLR: I have the Nikon D5100. It was my Christmas gift several Christmases ago and one of the best things I've ever received! I'm not the best and could stand to take a class to learn how to use it better, but it takes great pictures. I've taken it with me on our last two Europe trips and on several other vacations in the States. I can't wait to show y'all what I capture this time.
  • Magazines: Magazines are good to have in case your phone battery is low or if you have a headache from looking at a screen. That happens to me occasionally, so I try to keep a Self and People or US Weekly in my bag.
  • Snacks: One of the number one things in my bag as far as rank of importance goes. I've always been a hungry person. I'm very active and have a high metabolism. Now that I'm breastfeeding, I'm ravenous. I want to eat everything and need snacks between meals to keep from feelings like I'm withering away. You may think I'm being a bit dramatic, but it's just the truth.
  • Neck pillow: Must have in order to get any sleep on a 6:00AM flight!
  • Infinity scarf: This my friends is what you use to breastfeed or pump in public! It's way cuter and more functional than the large nursing covers. Plus you can match it with your outfit and feel far more stylish.
  • Breastmilk bags & Nursing pads: Since I'll be pumping on this trip, I need to pack bags with me wherever I go! The nursing pads are great for leakage which I don't have much of anymore, but I still wear them for comfort purposes.
  • Breast pump & Cooler: My electric pump will actually be packed in my suitcase, but I will have my hand pump and cooler in my carry on bag. The hand pump is great when you're on the go to help relieve pressure when you get too full. If you know it will be a while before you have time to sit down and pump, this allows you to continue on with your day. I've used it on an airplane, on the Disney Magical Express, in the car, you name it. All you need is your trusty infinity scarf to keep yourself covered. Usually no one around you even knows what's going on!
There you have it! My nursing mom travel essentials!

What do you HAVE to have in your bag when traveling?


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Tuesday, May 17, 2016

Baby Daddy


Yesterday was definitely Monday. It seemed like a regular old Monday. I woke up wayyyy to early (4:30am). I made all of my clients work harder then they probably wanted to. I taught spin then Tabata. I went home to see my baby girl who was elated that I was home. She then proceeded to fuss for a few hours. I think she has a lot to tell me about her day and she fusses at me for being gone. She eventually napped and I waited for her daddy to come home. Like I said, definitely Monday. It was also definitely my husband's 30th birthday! 

30 is a pretty big deal. You would think that when I got home from work I baked him something delicious for dessert and had everything ready for us to have for dinner. But no. When he got home from work, I was sprawled out, exhausted on the couch from waking up early, working out and coming home to a crazy baby girl. I didn't have any dinner ready to cook. I didn't make him a special dessert. I didn't even have a present.


We spent the evening snuggling on the couch catching up on Dancing with the Stars. He cooked salmon burgers and I made roasted brussels sprouts. We FINALLY got our fussy girl to fall asleep and we ate Crave cupcakes that JP had picked up Sunday afternoon. It was simple; it was perfect; it was a reflection of our new, wonderful life.

Now you may think that I wasn't really the greatest wife. Not a single thing on his birthday besides a cupcake? Don't worry, I'm actually pretty fabulous because we're headed to San Fransisco on Friday! A 4 day weekend for just the two of us. Our first weekend away without our baby girl. It'll be hard, but oh so needed and I can't wait. We'll celebrate with lots of food, desserts every day, bike tours, Sonoma and so much more. I can't wait!

Maybe you don't think I'm so bad now? Since he's so wonderful, here are some of my favorite shots of my baby and baby daddy!







And for fun, here's little Chlo on the left and her daddy on the right! Yup, he's clearly my baby daddy!


One last thing before I go. I may not have given JP a present on his actual birthday, but someone else did! She may not have been all that happy about it, but our baby who has no desire to crawl is actually crawling. She prefers to furniture cruise, run in her walker and walk around holding our hands, but she really can crawl!




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