a photo journal – wahl family reunion

our second wahl family reunion took place this month; we’re trying to keep the tradition of organizing one for every 5 years. this years took place at a koa campground near st. louis, missouri.

the location was perfect; you could rent a site to tent or park your camper at or they also offered little cabins available to rent. we decided on a camping cabin that had the cutest front porch. the best part was mazi girl was also allowed to stay there as well.

the actual reunion took place friday through sunday, but we made a little vacation out of it and drove up a few days early to spend the extra time with family.

one day we made a trip to the st. louis zoo. it was perfect because it had free admission and wasn’t too far of a drive from camp.

i love being able to watch my girls grow up with my cousin’s kids. it reminds me so much of the summer vacations we would go on to see the wahls growing up.

we spent a lot of time visiting with everyone, playing bags and basketball, and just sitting around the fire roasting marshmallows and chatting.

we couldn’t let the weekend go by without grabbing a few photos of our giant family in our matching shirts.

our shirts turned out so great this year…thank you ben for organizing it all!

“we put the WAHL in grizWAHLds”

the campground we stayed at was awesome and offered so many amenities for the kids…wagon rides, a jumping pillow, and a swimming pool were some of our favorites. and we definitely had to take advantage of the snow cone truck on our last day there.

see you all again in 2024, wahls!

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finding ME time in motherhood.

if you’re a mom, you know EXACTLY what i’m referring to. there is no denying that motherhood is the best job in the world, but it can be TOUGH. there is absolutely nothing like it; you will never feel so much love, guilt, stress, or anxiety from any job aside from that of a being a mother.

with all the hustle and bustle, and losing your mind a few times here and there, let’s talk about what this post is all about…you time! it’s absolutely a must, and as guilty as you may feel taking that time for yourself, it’s so important to do so. moms…you’ve got to take care of yourself in order to be able to take care of anybody else.

so here, i thought i’d share a few ways that i enjoy sneaking off for some me time:

relax in a bubble bath

this is my go to. even if i have to wait until my girls are in bed, i look forward to it so much. a bath bomb, a good-smelling candle, and some music. give me twenty minutes and i get out feeling so calm and refueled.

journal

i really enjoy writing. it lets me get all my thoughts out of my head and on to paper. simply just a way for me to decompress and de-stress.

drive time

i have a pretty decent commute to and from work every day so i’ve learned to quite enjoy that time alone, especially when i can have the windows down and blast some of my favorite music.

errands

yes. i said it…errands. “going out” for me now is running errands. alone.

and i’m thirty!

holy hell. it’s here. i’m officially thirty.

and i think i’m excited. not what i ever thought i would say about turning thirty, the big 3 – 0, a new decade, but it’s here and i’m ready.

this year, as I move into this next decade of life, i’m taking a little bit of a different approach to things. i want to love more; not only my family and friends, but myself too. i want to hold close the little moments that fall into the every day life routine. i want to travel more, have adventure, and see the world, but i also want to come home and celebrate the life that i’ve built there. i want to live fully in every. single. moment without rushing to the next.

but most of all, i want to appreciate thirty and the time that i have lived. it’s so humbling to look back at the life i’ve lived and see all that’s already been written and see how blessed i am. to see how much i’ve grown and learned. to see how i’ve become so strong and ready for the world.

there are some people out there who don’t get the opportunity for one more birthday with a loved one, so instead of hiding and dragging my feet into thirty, i’ve got my arms open and i’m ready.

join along on my 30th chapter because in this chapter, i’m exactly where i’m supposed to be.

the summer of 2019: my bucket list.

fall is and will always be my favorite season, but after some long cold months, summer comes in as a close second. i love what summer brings…sunshine, cookouts, adventure.

this summer is going to be different. it’s going to be better because i’m spending it with people who make me feel alive, and that’s the way life should be. it may include a whole lot of netflixing and just being at home, but that’s what i look forward to the most. a care-free summer with my favorite people.

so cheers, cheers to the best summer yet!

a few of these things are planned, and some are just some realistic, manageable ideas that i’ve put down on my summer bucket list that i’d like to do:

  • be creative – i haven’t spent a lot of time this year doing what i love most: creating. i hope to get some time in this summer to paint.
  • visit a zoo – always one of my girl’s favorites.
  • go camping – tenting, campfires, and stargazing. that’s been on my list for years! i want to make it happen this summer.
  • have a picnic – pack a lunch and go enjoy the sun. i’ve never experienced this. i want to.
  • messy twister – paint and some summer cocktails. why not?
  • the obvious: go to a cubs game – and lots of them.
  • go to a drive-in movie – something that has always been on my bucket list and still have yet to cross off.
  • hit up the madison farmer’s market one saturday morning – always a favorite of mine!

what about you? what do you have planned this summer?

if we were having coffee. round four.

life has been a little busy, but you know what? that’s okay. i’ve enjoyed the adventure and creating all these new memories lately.

want to know whats been happening in my life? perfect. pull up a chair and grab whatever you’re drinking; i’ve got some things to share with you.

if we were having coffee, i’d tell you that i haven’t had a lot of coffee in my cup lately. more so tequila. or vodka. i promise you i’m not an alcoholic; i’ve just been enjoying my recent trips away.

i enjoy my job, and lately it has given me a lot of opportunity to travel. it’s been nice to get away from small-town living for while and carry less stresses.

if we were having coffee, i’d tell you that i moved. i had mentioned previously, but the beginning of the year was chaotic with life changes, and even though its been quite the ride, they’re what was needed. including a new place to hang my keys at night. #parkitonmarket

i’ve now got this tiny little house and as much as i worried that it would be too small; it’s perfect. it’s homey and we’re all close. plus, mazi girl seems to agree.

if we were having coffee, i’d tell you about how my girls finished up their soccer season. let’s face it…they hate running. so maybe it wasn’t the best idea to follow in their mother’s footsteps and play. oops.

will they play again next year? probably not. when i asked my youngest if she’d like to sign up for it again next year…her response? “if i can sit on the bench and watch the whole time.” welp, atleast you’re honest mahkena.

if we were having coffee, i would share with you how my littles got to experience “bring your child to work day” at my work. kaylei and mahkena sure enjoyed themselves meeting my coworkers, a guided tour of the building, and learning what I do.

we spent the morning working hard, ate lunch in the park, and made sure to make a pit stop on the way home for some froyo. we get home and kaylei makes the comment, “mom, I want to work where you do when I grow up, but maybe not dress as “fancy”. so not dresses. got it, kid.