|Here's a photo of me, in case you wanted to know what I look like when I wear a plaid shirt. Now that that's out of the way, we can get to the good stuff.|
I decided to do a Q&A for this week's blog post. It's a chance for you to get to know me a little better! Thanks to those of you who sent in questions! I genuinely appreciate it! I also included links to your blogs and businesses, because I have great friends with great stuff on the interwebs and without you this post wouldn't have been possible! Aww.
Also something to note: I am saving a few questions for future posts, but most of the things that were asked are below! If you don't want to read the whole post, the questions are bolded (is that even a real word? There's a red squiggly line under it) and the answer is underneath, right where it should be. This makes for easy skimming. Enjoy!
Madeline from Caseyland asked:
Where did you guys move?
We are in Houston, Texas! It's the fourth largest city in the United States with a whopping 2.1 million people. And my family makes up 4 out of those 2.1 million. So if there are any stalkers reading this, good luck finding us. And by good luck, I really mean please don't.
Here's a fun fact: Currently, there are over 11,000 restaurants in Houston. If you ate out 3 times a day every day, it would take you 10 years to try them all. Anyone willing to take the challenge?
What is your husband doing in grad school?
My husband is going to school for prosthetics and orthotics! If you ever lose a limb, he's your guy.
How long does he have left?
Spouse Unit started school at the end of June, so 2.5 months ago. The O&P program usually takes 4 years, but this school does it in 2.5! Pretty crazy, but he's handling it like a champ.
What is your most favorite treat to make?
I would probably have to say peanut butter chocolate chip cookies. We also make mango smoothies and homemade kettle corn often, so those are a close second and third.
Anndee from Anndee Between The Lines asked:
What's your favorite trait about YOUR marriage?
I have a few. We are super goofy together and grateful for each other. We're also good forgivers.
How many kids do you want? Has the number changed since you've had kids?
When Spouse Unit and I got married, we decided we wanted as many as we can handle. Now, I feel like I can't always handle the ones I already have! I love them both, though. I want as many as God wants us to have. I think.
What are the plus sides to living away from your friends and family for so long?
Relying on each other is building our relationship, we are developing our own family traditions and making new friends, I am getting to share my beliefs with others who are unfamiliar with them, and I am seeing the beauty of the earth. I also feel like our relationships with our parents and siblings have improved because we contact them more often.
What do you do when you're really frustrated?
Cry. I'm a huge crier. If you know me at all, you should already know this. If this is your first intro to me, though: Hi. I'm Melissa. I have the gift of weeping.
There is a point when I'm too frustrated to cry, though. I've only reached that point a few times. The other day, for example, I reached that point. I was beyond angry and I went and jump roped out my rage in the garage. It helped a lot. I would recommend it.
What's the most rewarding thing about being a mom?
Snuggles from my favorite people. I love it!
It's also great to see them catch on to things you teach them (that are positive and on purpose). For example, I taught Tina how to "Whip and Nae-Nae" this week. It's so awesome. Especially when she yells, "whip!"
How do you maintain your sanity in 3 hours of church with 2 little kids?
Snacks, toys, and books. We really only have to be sane for one hour because Spouse Unit and I are nursery workers in Tina's class, so Lil Spits gets to come, too! Hurray for loopholes! Good luck to the rest of ya.
After having your one baby with an epidural and one baby natural, what is your plan for the next one? Would you do natural again or no way?
I loved my epidural, so I would probably get one. If I had to go natural again, though, I could do it. I would feel more confident in myself, and that's always a good attitude to have when you're about to do something really, really hard.
Let's say someone offered you a free llama, but you had to hide it in your house for a full year and you could only take it out in the dark of night... Would you still take it? (Just trying to judge the level of the psychosis here.)
This one made me laugh a lot. Based on my biggest fear and the size of my apartment, I would have to turn it down. I don't want to get in trouble for having a llama, and I don't want to share a one bedroom apartment with my family and him.
If someone offered me a free llama and said, "He comes with his own house, he's nocturnal, and he likes to go for walks at night," then you bet your bottom dollar that I'd take him.
Cara (who sells the most beautiful paintings on Cara Rose Design) asked:
If you weren't a stay at home mom right now, what would you like to do as a career? Do you want to pursue said career once your babes are independent? I get this question a lot, and it's hard to answer! Basically, what's your 10 year plan?
Besides Spouse Unit working in prosthetics, we have talked about owning a business together someday. He wants to own a roller rink, and I want to have a bakery or a catering business. We have talked about combining them and doing specials, like "get a free cookie with your skate rentals." It would be the ultimate party place. Kinda silly, like us, but we think it would be super awesome.
We also want to be debt free and in a house in 10 years, but we want to be debt free before we own a house.
Who is your idol? Real life person that you know... If you could be just like someone, who would it be?
I have always looked up to my Aunt Vickie a lot. She's a breast cancer survivor and the most positive person you've ever met. She makes you feel important when she talks to you. She's selfless. Once (probably more times than once), she flew to Disneyland for the day by herself because she had a plane ticket she needed to use. I want to be like that.
If you could invite any four people to dinner, who would you want to have for company? Alive or dead.
Well, that's kinda morbid. I would prefer live people, thank you very much. I pick Tina, Lil Spits, Spouse Unit, and Ellen DeGeneres.
Are you scared of anything? This could be big (anxieties that keep you up at night) or small (spiders).
Getting in trouble, cockroaches (which I didn't realize until we moved here and they started appearing in our apartment!!), snakes, being in the dark by myself, scary movies, and babies in peril.
The last one manifested itself after having Tina. Now, anytime I watch a movie where there's a baby in danger or hear a news story along similar lines, I start ugly-crying hard.
And because it's that time of year, what's your favorite Peach Days memory?
Peach Days!? Now I'm having BC peach withdrawals. Somebody needs to go have a peach tart at Idle Isle for me if they still have them!
When Spouse Unit came home from his mission, our second-first date was at Peach Days. We went to the car show, looked at the booths, and went to Peach City for dinner. We had the Walt Mann Special for dessert, which is a butt ton of ice cream. It made Spouse Unit super hyper, and it was hilarious.
After that, we went to Heritage Theater and saw Charlie and the Chocolate Factory, in which Charlie got a concussion during intermission. Spouse Unit held my hand for the first time again. We ended the night by going stargazing and sharing our second-first kiss. After that, we never dated anyone else.
Morgan from Rediscovering Morgan asked:
What is your favorite candle, lotion, just product in general from Bath & Body Works? This could also be just your favorite smell.
I really like "Forever Sunshine" by Bath & Body Works. That's my favorite scent to wear. My favorite candles are "Farmstand Apple" and "Winter."
As far as other smells, I love the smell of burning leaves (like after they've been raked up and turned into a bonfire), fall, baked goods, citrus, and my post-bath babies.
How do you unwind after a long stressful day?
We like to watch movies on VidAngel, make a treat, and go to sleep. Sleep's my favorite part.
What is your favorite hot chocolate flavor?
I once had a cup of Nutella hot chocolate, and I don't know if I have had a cup since that could beat it. I will drink pretty much any flavor as long as it's topped with whipped cream.
What was the hardest part about moving so far away (temporal here, I know, missing family and friends is real, but I mean, driving alone with the girls...hitting a turtle...I'm sure there was a struggle)?
The girls actually did great on the drive! The hardest part was probably just how long it took. It took us 36 hours, so staying awake was tough at night. An extra hour of driving is a lot when you're exhausted, but luckily we had my awesome seester on the other end of the phone handling all of our hotel cancellations and reservations. Thanks Pugmum (that's your new name now)!
What's your favorite thing about Houston?
There are four.
1. Lots of fun things to do here
2. Some beautiful plants and flowers!
3. People are really, really nice
4. The skin problems I used to have have gone away because of the humidity.
What's your least favorite thing about Houston (other than not having family and friends there)?
There are three.
2. Humidity, my hair is always frizzy (you win some, you lose some).
3. Driving is crazy here. If you want to go somewhere that's 5 miles away, it always takes 20 minutes.
Fruity or chocolate candy?
"Chocolate? CHOCOLATE? CHOCOLATE!!!!" Name that show.
What is, in your opinion, the best find you ever made at a thrift shop?
Best find or best deal?
Find: I once found a turquoise, dotted Swiss sundress from the 1950's at a Seattle thrift shop that smelled like cats. I paid $25 for it, which is a little pricey but it was pretty much one-of-a-kind. I wish I still had it because it was super cute, but I think the zipper broke and it stopped fitting me since I like to eat and I had two babies.
Deal: I bought a dress that retails for about $100 for $6. Spouse Unit also wanted me to point out that we bought a brand new WhirleyPop at the DI for $3 (they're $20 at the store). It has been the source of much kettle corn joy in our home.
What is going on in your brain when you want to buy something that you want but don't need?
"I don't need this, but..." then I make a rationalization. I made an emotional purchase the other day at Target and I felt super guilty, but I convinced myself I deserved it, that I'd wear it, and that it was okay because it was on clearance.
How do your girls go down for the night? Bedtime routine, etc.
Our bedtime routine works pretty well for us. We don't do a bath every night, but at 8 pm we will get in jammies, check diapers, read 1-2 books, read a scripture story, say prayers, sing a hymn or children's song. We'll do hugs and kisses, say goodnight, and put the girls in their cribs. If Lil Spits isn't already asleep, she'll cry sometimes. We will let her cry it out unless it's longer than a few minutes. Then I break down and go nurse her or rock her to sleep. After that, Spouse Unit and I will do dishes together, listen to scriptures or a General Conference talk, pick up the apartment, and hang out and talk about our day. And play on our devices.
What's your favorite food to eat that you shouldn't?
Sweetened condensed milk by the spoonful... I'm pathetic and gross, but it's so good.
There were three questions posed that I'm going to use for my next two Mama Llama blog posts:
Melinda from Sincerely, Mel Fonda (whose got a new blog post going on today!) wanted to know how I knew I was ready to have my first baby and my second baby.
Carrisa and Carrie want to know how financially I'm able to stay-at-home with my girls while my husband is in school.
Heather (who is starting a business soon called "Miss May Crochet," she makes the cutest stuff!) wants to know how to meal plan and grocery shop on a budget.
I'm going to blog about those, and sneak in an extra post with the recipe for my favorite peanut butter chocolate chip cookies too, and you can all thank Madeline for that.
Long story short: the next few weeks will be exciting! I hope you'll join me!
Thanks so much for reading!
Hasta la pasta, ya'll!