Friday, June 29, 2012


One year ago today, one of my deepest desires became a reality; we found out we were having a daughter

I can still remember the giddy anticipation as we headed to our ultrasound appointment like it was yesterday. And then having to keep it a secret until dinner when we revealed the news to our parents! What an absolute blessing Claire has been to all of us, from the very moment Chris and I found out we were expecting! I pray she never doubts just how much she is loved, wanted, adored and cherished by us!

Monday, June 25, 2012

{Weekend Adventures}

I can always tell it's summer by the way we spend our weekends. It's my favorite season because there is so much going on and outdoor activities are wonderfully abundant!

Saturday we packed up a picnic lunch and did some wine tasting at a few of our favorite wineries. Sunshine and relaxation were just the ticket to celebrate four great years of marriage!

Sunday afternoon we took a family hike along a local trail and we've officially decided to make this a weekly family activity! So fun, rejuvenating and Claire had a ball packed on her daddy's back!

We introduced our big girl to yogurt for the first time this weekend and she is a BIG fan! They seriously don't come cuter that this girl!!

And finally, Claire decided it was time to ramp up her mobility and started backward crawling! The little cutie can now scoot herself halfway around the house, which means that we have some baby proofing to do!

How about you-do anything fun, exciting, outdoors? I hope your weekend was wonderful!

Thursday, June 21, 2012

{Four} Lovely Years

Four years ago, I wed the love of my life! I am beyond blessed with a husband and partner who is my very best friend, who will move mountains to put a smile on my face, wipes my tears when I've had a bad day, holds my hand through the good and the tough times, rejoices with me over victories, loves me deeply and pursues me every single day! I adore you, Christopher Hansen and am so honored to be your wife! Happy anniversary!

Wednesday, June 20, 2012

{Island Fever...}

Unfortunately, this is not a post telling you that we're flitting off last minute to a tropical paradise. But the next best thing, we made a little house update that's been on our list for a few months. Introducing, our newest addition to the breakfast nook!

But first, what it looked like before:

And now!:

Chris and I were very fond of and quite proud of our black pedestal kitchen table. It was a true labor of love from my husband to me two years ago when he sanded it down from many layers of paint to give me my dream table. I thought we would have that table forever. But after living in our home for about a year, we noticed that it is actually our dining room that gets the most use.

Sometime last Fall, Chris brought up the possibility of putting an island in the breakfast nook instead, something that, ironically, I had been thinking, too! Right away we found the Stenstorp kitchen island from Ikea. We fell immediately in love. We were first drawn to its sturdy, solid construction and additionally, the two stainless shelves that would tie in our stainless appliances, serve as extra storage and add a bit of the modern touch that my husband loves so much. We also appreciated that it provides some seating on the back side if we still want to have coffee or breakfast in that sunny little nook. What's not to love?

Like many ideas/projects at the moment, this one got put on our 'something to save for' list. And then last week I had a wild hair to have an impromptu garage sale in an attempt to purge some closets and maybe earn a little extra cash for those little projects we've been itching to finish.  At the prompting of my genius husband we brought out our kitchen table hoping maybe it would sell and the money could go toward our island. Within the first hour it was gone - score! 

And then as luck would have it, I decided to do a little browing on craigslist Monday morning and there it was, our island, in mint condition selling for $100 less then the original price! You should know that Chris has a search set up for this very piece on the craigslist app on his phone and we've never seen it listed, but this particular seller had spelled it incorrectly so it never showed up on his search. So basically, me finding it was pure luck! I wasted no time calling the seller and picking it up. I am certain I looked like a five-year old on Christmas morning:)

And now, this is what I get to look at every day while I'm in the kitchen! I am so happy with how clean and crisp it looks, especially next to our white cabinets!

Ahh...I LOVE it and seriously can't help smiling every time I see it!

Monday, June 18, 2012

{Fathers Day} In An Instagram

In addition to celebrating my husband's first Father's Day, yesterday also marked 9 years together. So needless to say, I wanted to make it a special one! 

I started the day off with one of the best ways I know how to show my husband love - with a delicious meal! I whipped up one of his faves, blueberry pancakes {heavy on the blueberries}. A perfectly yummy way to start the day!

{And Claire even left a sweet surprise for her daddy-much like the one she got me for Mother's Day}

After our tummies were satisfied we took his present out for a spin! Claire and I got Chris a bike for Father's Day, though if you follow me on Instagram you know that he's been enjoying it as an early gift for the last two weeks since it was too good of a deal to pass up;) We've all been enjoying it to the fullest with frequent family bike rides.

{My happy loves getting loaded up for our morning ride}

Once we were good and sweaty, we spent a few hours enjoying the pool together!

{Our little beach babe feeding herself mangoes}

And since my hubby has recently become a purist and gone back to a good ole' charcoal grill, dinner with our family consisted of a tri-tip cook-off...all were De-lish!! The perfect way to wrap up a wonderful day!

"A good father is one of the most unsung, unpraised, unnoticed, and yet one of the most valuable assets in our society." -- Billy Graham

To my husband - From the bottom of my heart, thank you for being such a loving, nurturing, Christ-like example for our daughter! I couldn't have dreamed up a better man to father my children. Thank you for loving us so well! ~ Your girls

Friday, June 15, 2012

Spa Day {Indian Springs}

My aunt is still in town so another fun girls outing was in order! Yesterday was a spa day at Indian Springs in Calistoga! We indulged in mud baths and soaked in the mineral springs pool. It was completely amazing and by far my favorite spa experience to date! (Seriously, read more about the volcanic ash mud bath treatment here!)

Last year's birthday plans actually involved this trip, but days before our appointments I found out I had a little Claire in my belly so I had to take a rain check. It was not only worth the wait, but so special because my little spa baby got to join us in the mineral pool!

 We started the day with a little wine tasting at Black Stallion Winery

Followed by a picnic lunch and lounging in the mineral pool at Indian Springs (read more about it here!) before and after our treatments.

Claire was a big fan of the spa scene;)

 And for dinner we headed over to St. Helena for dinner at farmstead, an awesome restaurant whose ingredients are entirely farm-to-table!

Everything we ordered was lovely and the decor is all so farm rustic - I love!!

By the end of the day we had worn out this little pumpkin!

All-in-all a wonderful day with even more wonderful ladies!

Thursday, June 14, 2012

Claire Elizabeth {7 Months}

Happy seven months of life, Beautiful Girl! What a sweet, independent child you are becoming. To see the world through your eyes gives fresh perspective to everything and is such a blessing. Being your Mama is the best job in the world!!

I am happy to report that the whole carrot fiasco was not indicative of you disliking vegetables-phew! To date you have also tried: sweet potatoes, avocados, butternut squash, peas, apricots, mango, plums & bananas and have thoroughly loved them all! Though you only tolerate apples, pears and cereal. Much to your mama's delight, you may already be a foodie as you seems to prefer your veggies roasted instead of steamed (not that I blame you!). In light of this, I plan on giving carrots another go, only next time I will roast them!

You are a great eater and you are showing a lot of interest in feeding yourself. You are loving the new textures and flavors and I love knowing your little body is getting whole, fresh foods! This past month has brought particular excitement over introduced you to your very own cup! Most days you either get water or 100% fruit juice (diluted) and are completely ecstatic every time you see it!

Your mobility this past month has grown in leaps and bounds! You are never in the same spot for long, making my job much more active. I can't take my eyes off you for a second or you're in to something you shouldn't be...ahem, like gnawing on my phone:) Activity time with you has never been more fun, especially when you have your sweet giggle fits rolling every which way! You are still very fond of your Exersaucer, which makes quick tasks like cleaning the floor and doing dishes much more manageable when you're awake. And maybe my favorite right now is how much you love to touch faces. It's the sweetest thing ever!

Play dates with friends are so fun because you LOVE other babies!  I just love seeing how intrigued you are with other little ones! And besides the pool, your favorite thing is probably bath time. You are now taking baths in mommy and daddy's big bathtub and you can't get enough-especially when your rubber duckies are involved.

Now that it's almost summer, we've been spending lot of family time outdoors, taking plenty of walks, bike rides in your new trailer and swimming nearly every weekend! We hope to nurture in you as much love for the outdoors as we have. So far, you are up for any adventure we present to you. Let's hope you are as agreeable for our family camping trip this summer!

You are still a constant chatter bug, making all kids of coos, squeels, "dadas" and most recently, "hi"! We love when you start talking up a storm-your voice is so girly and we can't wait to hear what you start saying next!

Claire, you are the apple of our eye and we can't imagine life without you! You have grown our hearts beyond what we imagined possible. We love you little girl, more than you will ever know!

All my love,

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