31.8.16

TODDLER DAYS

There is nothing sweeter than watching your child climb onto a chair all by himself, point to a picture and say "Daddy" as he recognizes Alex's face. I seriously love this stage right now. He is constantly learning, and everyday is a new adventure for him. He's just so stinking entertaining. I spend 95% of my day wearing a stupid fabric fish bowl as a hat because Calvin is adament that I wear it. When I think he's distracted by something else across the room, I quietly take it off. Within seconds, Calvin has noticed and makes a bee line for me and yet again places the bowl on my head. It's quite the back and forth routine we have going on, but we both find it comical. 

I still can't believe that in one month, one short month, he will be going to nursery at our church. How on earth is he almost 18 months?! It's crazy to think that is now a toddler. This whole growing up thing is happening way too quickly for my liking. 

BOOK REVIEW: OPPORTUNITY KNOCKS

SynopsisAlex Cleary has careened from one dead-end position to another. But suddenly the ingenious makeup artist finds her distinct talents are valued by none other than lifestyle-empire mogul Hillary P.--renowned for her golden touch in broadcast and print media, as well as for her hair-trigger temper. It's a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to join the daytime television scene that Alex is determined not to screw up. Then a frank word in the wrong ear puts Alex's job on the line. Alex anticipates Hillary's rage, but she can't believe that this multimillionaire is holding her newest staffer to a nondisclosure agreement that demands reparation of 5 million dollars. Alex has only 48 hours to repair the damage. And with a vengeful Hillary P. watching the clock, the devil will have her due...

Review: I feel like I have mentioned this quite a few times on past book reviews, but one of my biggest pet peeves is when a novel feels to rushed. This book had so much potential, but it really should have been another 70-100 pages. I thought the book was so supposed to span over a 48 hour period, but it doesn't. The first half of the book takes place for around 3-4 months, while the second half is 48 hours. Because of this, the second half of the book felt way too rushed which made it seem completely unrealistic. With that being said, there were things that I did like about the novel, it wasn't a complete write off in my opinion. Just another one of those quick reads that demand little attention or thinking for that matter. It was a fun read and was certainly a page turner. Luckily because it is such a quick it didn't feel like a waste of time once I was done. 

Rating: 3/5

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18.8.16

DISTRACTED

I'm trying to be less distracted. Less screen time, more Calvin time. For the first couple months of Calvin's life I pretty much lived on my couch, nursed him while he fell asleep on me and watched Netflix the entire time. I watched the entire series of Gilmore Girls, Full House, The Mindy Project, The West Wing, and a butt load of movies. It was such a chill time and I loved staring him in complete wonder. As the months went by, I hate to admit it, but I got so used to watching something that it quickly became a habit. I don't want to look back on Calvin's first years and remember the shows I watched. I want to remember watching him and playing with him. I'm not saying I've been ignoring him, I have been getting on the floor and playing with him, just for some reason or another the TV is always on in the background. So for the last few weeks I have been making an added effort to put away the phone, leave the laptop closed, and keeping the remote in the kitchen.

This is age is so much fun and he is constantly learning, showing me things and trying to make me laugh. The past week was a little rough just because we were trapped in our little apartment due to weather, (Let's just say I am getting more and more excited to get my G2 in a month!) but I still enjoyed focusing all my energy on him. Now I'm not saying that I am now the perfect mom, and that turning on the TV makes you a bad mom. To be honest, there are still times when we need a little distraction, so on goes the TV and we watch a couple episodes of 72 cutest animals. Not going to lie, it's pretty entertaining to see Calvin pointing, looking back at me and yelling "puppy", every time an animal is on screen.

I still can't believe he is almost 18 months. There are little moments when I look at him and still see my little newborn, then he starts running around babbling away and I realize how fast he is growing. Everyone says that the time goes fast, but you truly have no idea until you have a baby. It seems to just slip away. Time is a thief I would rob.

16.8.16

BOOK REVIEW: AFTER YOU

Disclaimer: If you have not read Me Before You, or seen the film, do not read this book review. It is chuck full of spoilers!
Synopsis: Louisa Clark is no longer just an ordinary girl living an ordinary life. After the transformative six months spent with Will Traynor, she is struggling without him. When an extraordinary accident forces Lou to return home to her family, she can’t help but feel she’s right back where she started.
Her body heals, but Lou herself knows that she needs to be kick-started back to life. Which is how she ends up in a church basement with the members of the Moving On support group, who share insights, laughter, frustrations, and terrible cookies. They will also lead her to the strong, capable Sam Fielding—the paramedic, whose business is life and death, and the one man who might be able to understand her. Then a figure from Will’s past appears and hijacks all her plans, propelling her into a very different future...
For Lou Clark, life after Will Traynor means learning to fall in love again, with all the risks that brings. But here Jojo Moyes gives us two families, as real as our own, whose joys and sorrows will touch you deeply, and where both changes and surprises await.


Review: I'm still not quite sure how I feel about this books. There were things that I absolutely loved about it, while other things that I didn't love so much. The weird thing is that the first novel was written in 2007-ish and the sequel in 2015. Which means that Jojo Moyes intended for Me Before You to be a stand alone novel, and to be honest I would have been completely happy with having no sequel. I found the ending of Me Before You satisfying, and I liked having this "unknown" factor of what happened to Louisa. The first novel felt natural and realistic, while After You there was a lot of elements the felt forced and super over top. There was too much drama, instead of focusing on one specific thing, almost everything was a dramatic situation. I seriously hated the storyline around her parents. I feel that how the dad reacted was so unbelievably stupid (and this is coming from a girl who does not consider herself a feminist). His reactions were totally out of character in my opinion. I did however love the ambulance driver, Sam. Again, there were pieces of his story that were a little unrealistic, but as a character, I thoroughly enjoyed him. There was one thing, at the beginning of the novel, that completely took me by surprise and I loved the character that was introduced along with her relationship with Louisa. This review is a little all over the place, but I kind of felt that the novel was sort of all over the place. If you've Me Before You, then I would recommend it. It's not a "go run to your nearest bookstore and buy", kind of a book. A better way to sum up how I feel is I will definitely be reading Me Before You again and again and again, while I don't plan on rereading this book. Ever. I just don't feel the need to.

Rating: 3/5

9.8.16

LET ME RE-INTRODUCE MYSELF

It is currently 4:15 am. I can't sleep, so here I am writing a blog post as my kitten is cuddled up against me, making it rather difficult for me to type if I must add. I'm not quite sure where this blog post is going to go, but I just had the urge to write. To be honest I've kind of been uninspired lately. For almost 6 months I was really enjoying the content I was creating on this space. Then it just got kind of old. I felt like I was stuck on this schedule where I felt I had to get a post up/make a video, and things felt sort of hollow. I realized this after I made all my posts on our Chicago trip. It reminded me how much I missed blogging my adventures, and time with family.

I used to bring my camera everywhere to document moments for me, but over the past few months I've been saying to Alex "Can you take this picture for my blog?", and it's really started to bug me. I was no longer taking pictures for memories, but was taking them for my blog. I'm still glad I have those pictures because they do hold dear memories for me, but I want to take more pictures of the moments, and less of the posed variety. Now with that being said, you'll probably still see style and collaboration posts now and again, but I only want to create content that makes me happy.

I was reading Kaylie's new blog last night, and her post touched me so deeply. I hate when I get so caught up in the "aesthetic" of blogging. I want to go back to when I didn't feel as much pressure, and where everything was much more relaxed. I know it sounds pretty pathetic, especially since I don't have that much of a following here, but I never started this blog for that reason. I started it for me. I wanted a place where I could feel comfortable writing about whatever I wanted, and I could create connections with people I had never met before.

I don't know what my plan is here. I don't know what this post was supposed to accomplish. Sometimes it just feels good to write and not no where things will end up. I used to be the type of person that would just write. Most of the time things wouldn't make sense, or mesh well together. But to me, I felt like I had created something beautiful.

I guess what I'm trying to say is that I miss being "wordy". Sitting down and just writing. From here on out I want to make more of an effort to write for me. Not worrying about how many pins, views or comments a post gets, but more of what I get personally out of the process of writing. I don't want to share everything on here, but I do want to feel comfortable again to be me. Unapologetically.

So hi. My name is Rebekah Baronins. I always count the number of pages before I read a chapter. I am horrible at being grammatically correct. I mix up words and mispronounce things on a daily basis. Sarcasm scares me sometimes.    

It is currently now 6:37 am. And I am tired.

5.8.16

BOOK REVIEW: TELL ME THREE THINGS

Synopsis: Everything about Jessie is wrong. At least, that’s what it feels like during her first week of junior year at her new ultra-intimidating prep school in Los Angeles. Just when she’s thinking about hightailing it back to Chicago, she gets an email from a person calling themselves Somebody/Nobody (SN for short), offering to help her navigate the wilds of Wood Valley High School. Is it an elaborate hoax? Or can she rely on SN for some much-needed help? It’s been barely two years since her mother’s death, and because her father eloped with a woman he met online, Jessie has been forced to move across the country to live with her stepmonster and her pretentious teenage son. In a leap of faith—or an act of complete desperation—Jessie begins to rely on SN, and SN quickly becomes her lifeline and closest ally. Jessie can’t help wanting to meet SN in person. But are some mysteries better left unsolved?

Review: As soon as I heard Meg talk about this book, I immediately put it on hold at the library. And boy howdy am I glad I did! This book was so so so SO good people!!! It had me constantly second guessing who I thought SN was, and I loved that! I really felt connected to Jessie. Although I have never lost a parent, I understood how she felt in certain situations. I feel like I would have reacted similarly to her. I think I would rank this book right below Me Before You, in terms of books I have read so far this year.

Rating: 5/5

1.8.16

MOMMY STYLE MONDAY: GIRLS DAY OUT

When I first read Kiana's email telling what this week's inspiration was, my initial thought was "ah crap!". To be honest, most of my girl friends have moved over the years, and although I still have a small number of girls that have stayed in Ottawa, we don't see each other that often. Our lives are pretty busy so scheduling girl time can be a little tricky. And on top of all that, Calvin was kind of having an "off" week. I barely left the house, wore little to no makeup and wore leggings and a t-shirt all week. I was fully intending on planning a girls day and taking some pictures, but Calvin is my priority and he was definitely not feeling it. But that is the reality of motherhood. Plans change, and that's ok :)
Now with all that being said, a couple weeks ago I was able to go the movies with one of best friends and have a little DQ date afterwards. I have known this girl for years, and although we've changed, our friendship has continued to grow and I cherish it dearly. I was having a little bit of a rough week and so I texted her to see if we could go out without our spouses or Calvin to catch up just the two of us. I love being a wife and mother, but I am hands down a firm believer on having some time "sans" kids with friends. I was so grateful to have someone other than my family to talk to about my troubles and feel their support and comfort.

Having that one night really helped me recharge and just forget about everyday responsibilities. I feel that women need other women. There is something powerful about being able to connect with other women, sharing our lives and allowing a friendship to grow.
I know this week's post was a bit of a cop-out, but be sure to check out the other beautiful mommies participating in the collaboration this week. If you're interested in joining us next time, be sure to visit Kiana's, or Madeline's blog to sign up!!!

Kiana at Glitter & Donuts
Madeline at CaseyLand
Monica at It's All About
Amy at Harris Inc. 
Melissa at The Frolics of Mama Llama
Rose at Babies & Bluejeans 
Beverly at What a Day 
Juli at Journey of J^3
Susan at Sue's News
Anndee at Anndee Between the Lines

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