Who are you writing for?

My sister's birthday was on Saturday and Dennis, Duke, and I went to Punch Bowl Social in Denver to help her celebrate.  I had a really great conversation with my brother-in-law while we were there and it really made me stop and think about who I'm writing for on this blog.  I have ALWAYS loved writing...from as early as 5th grade, I remember loving to write poetry and logging daily happenings in my journals.  I was generally seeking asylum from the anxiety demons that took up way too much of my head space.  And it always seemed to help. 
A lot has changed since my early days of battling Tourette syndrome, OCD, and a blossoming anxiety disorder, but I'm still writing for the same person.  Me.  At the end of the day, this is my favorite creative outlet.  Don't get me wrong, I LOVE when other people read my stuff...I love it even more when something I write really resonates with someone, helps them out, or makes them laugh.  I also love looking back on old posts and remembering what our day to day lives were like years ago.  This is even more important to me now that I can share about Duke, because I know I will love looking back and reading about the early days.

I stumbled upon this post the other day that I wrote a few years ago.  I used to write myself self-affirmations on a white board on my fridge, or on sticky notes left around my apartment when I lived alone and was going through a tough time.  I still have a white board on my fridge {highly recommended} but now Dennis and I use it to write notes back and forth to each other.  We might leave the note up for a few days or weeks, even, before the other person erases it and writes one in response.  It never fails to make me smile when I see little tokens of my husband's love scrawled across the fridge whenever I walk into the kitchen.


Do you have a creative outlet?  Who are you writing/drawing/singing/teaching for?  I love this space and I love that I've been able to devote more time to it since I've been home with Duke.  If you're reading this, thank you a million times over for supporting this space of mine.

-T-

Upstairs Circus a.k.a. Drinking and Using Hammers!

I mentioned in this post that I was going to a place called Upstairs Circus in downtown Denver for a friends birthday.  I also told you I'd let you know how the place was the following week.  Sometimes I lie.  So today I am here to tell you all about our experience at Upstairs Circus...and in case you don't care about the cement coasters that I made, I'll tell you right now this place is a lot of fun and I highly recommend you visit!

My friend Erica reserved tables for us for her birthday.  I believe there were about 20 of us there.  Basically you walk in, hand over your ID/Credit Card/First Born and they hand you back your ID, a plastic toy and a craft menu.  Wait...didn't I give them all my money a card that will likely get denied if they try to spend more than $73?  Don't worry, they are just making your segue to the bar more convenient.  Once you look over all of your craft choices: leather wallet, leather flask holder w/flask, cement coasters, magnetic bottle opener, string art...to name just a few, you hand over your plastic toy {unless you're Dennis and want to steal yours} and get your craft making kit!  I literally got to MIX CEMENT.  This place is legit.


They have a full bar and I definitely recommend pacing yourself if you do a craft that involves hammering 23415098 nails into a wooden board so you can make some nifty string art.  It could get dangerous, is all I'm saying.
We drank, we crafted, we laughed, we wished we had used the stencils they provided, and we all in all had a fantastic time.  We were there for about 4 hours and the staff was crazy friendly and helpful.  They never made us feel rushed and they didn't act annoyed when we tried to get them to finish our projects for us.  {In case you're worried about where Duke was during all of this chaos...don't be. He was at home spending quality time with auntie Jen :)}


I'm not terribly artistic so I really should've paid more attention to the stencils provided, but I still like my homemade coasters!  Even if they look like my 5 year old niece painted them.  That part gets covered up annnyway.  Dennis and his friend Tim killed it with the magnetic bottle openers!  If you're looking for something fun and different to do in Denver, go get drinking crafting!

Happy Wednesday!

-T-

*Menu photos from Upstairs Circus website.

Easter 2016 Rewind

As much as Duke really wanted to dye Easter eggs this year, I told him I really think it'd be better if he waited until next year when he can pick up the cup of dye and pour it all over himself on purpose vs. just accidentally flailing his arms to and fro.  He made a screeching sound at me in response, so I think he agrees!  Seriously some days the sounds he practices are adorable coos and ahhhs and other days, he sounds like a baby dinosaur that might attack at any moment. 
Duke's Easter basket from his South Dakota Grandma and Grandpa {My parents}
Book
Anyway!  We got all dressed up in our Sunday best for church service Easter morning.  {We are THE WORST at going to church on a regular basis and I tell myself time and time again that we will get better, and then we're all snuggled up in bed at 8:30 Sunday morning playing and giggling and another 9 a.m. mass opportunity slips on by.}  Yesterday, however, we were bright eyed, adequately caffeinated and so excited to celebrate the big man upstairs.  The service was nice, but very long and kids and adults alike were getting very antsy towards the end.  Duke was thankfully a champ, he slept through most of the service and was happy when he woke up.

These two matching cuties make my heart oh so happy.
I was really happy we got to see my sister, brother in law, and nephew at church since we wouldn't be spending the rest of the day with them.  We snapped this lovely photo in the super bright sun after mass.  Squinty eyes will have to do.

Duke got a few new toys in his Easter basket this year and I thiiiink from the photographic proof below, the Easter bunny nailed it.  His Nonni and Opa {Dennis' mom and step-dad} got him a teddy bear that sings a nighttime prayer, and an egg carton toy that teaches numbers and colors in 3 languages!
Monkey // Elephant
Giggling Lion- From Target but not available online // Night Night Bear (similar)
Egg Carton
Duke isn't the only one who got special treats from the Easter bunny at our house...my AMAZING husband had secretly played Easter bunny for both of us {mainly me} and I was so surprised to see my own Easter basket sitting on the table Easter morning.  He had made up an excuse to run errands with Duke on Saturday and I didn't think anything of it because he mentioned it was for my birthday coming up in a few weeks.  Instead, he was stocking up on gifts for our Easter morning...he got me this planner to use for my new business venture, a new tote/makeup bag, my FAVORITE chocolate treats and two pairs of comfy pants.  He's the best ever.

He had to stock up his own basket with a little candy. :)

Breakfast after mass and dinner were spent at Dennis' aunt and uncles house.  We snuck home in between so all of my boys could take naps and we could change out of our church clothes.  It was such an awesome day filled with quality family time, deeelicious food {sausage pie, ravioli, cheesecake, and way too many cookies}, and games.  Holidays are so much sweeter with Duke in the mix!

And for fun, Easter 2015 vs. Easter 2016!  I was obviously pregnant for Easter 2015 but we hadn't officially announced it yet so it was still our little secret.  I hope you all had a wonderful Easter weekend!

Happy Monday!

-T-

Fri-YAY!

D has the day off today and I am SO EXCITED for a 3-day weekend with my amazing little family.  The highlight will most definitely be Easter on Sunday!  Duke's first Easter basket is all ready to-go and stocked with every essential a 5-month old could possible need.  Just kidding, I don't fit in the basket.


Here are 5 things I am LOVING on this oh so Good Friday.

{1}  Easter Baskets! Speaking of Duke's Easter basket, here it is.  So. Stinking. Cute!  I bought it at Pottery Barn online but I'm not seeing it on their website anymore.
{2}  Husband of the Year.  I shared this on my Instagram {follow me @trishfelecos} earlier this week and I have to give my husband props again.  I seriously can't brag on this man enough.  Duke was struggling all day on Monday with some teething pain and couldn't nap for long without waking up screaming.  I felt awful for him and by the time D called me to tell me he was coming home from work, I couldn't hide my exhaustion on the phone.  I asked him to stop and pick up some infant Tylenol and he came home with some extra treats for me.  I opened the card and gift and was immediately shuffled into the bathroom to take a nice long bath, read a book, and listen to music while he took care of Duke and cooked dinner.
{3} Snow Day!  We had a crazy blizzard on Wednesday after a beautiful 75 degree day full of outside adventures on Tuesday.  Thus is life in Colorado!  Anyway, Dennis' company closed early so he got to come home a little after noon and we got to spend the whole afternoon/evening together as a family.  I made a delicious pot roast for dinner + chocolate chip cookie bars and got to spend some time working on my new business while D played with mini-D.

Staying cozy warm during the blizzard!

{4} Batman vs. Superman...Oh yes, we saw the movie last night at 9:30 with a group of friends!  I don't pay much attention to reviews, although I had heard the ones for this are not so great.  I'm not a comic book connoisseur so I was a little confused about parts but it was decent and I got to have a beer at least while watching.  Either way, I prefer Tony Stark and some Avengers to this duo...

{5} These. You can thank me later.
Lastly, THANK YOU all so much for the love and support on this post and this post.  I love to write from the heart and honesty is a top priority for me on this blog, so it makes it even more special when I can have a positive impact on others throughout the process.  And just for cuteness...

-T-

Link-ups!

Duke Anthony Felecos- 5 months old!

To:  Duke, Bubbas, my little love, my handsome boy, little nugget,

I typed 4 months old 3 times in the title before I finally got it right with the 5...how, my sweet boy, are you 5 months old!?  Something about it seems so much different than 4 months old.  Maybe it's because next month you'll officially be 6 months old- 1/2 through your first year of life!  You can just find me in a pile of blubbery tears over here, holding on to all of the 3-6 month clothes you've already outgrown.  AH, I digress.  Let's talk about all of the WONDERFUL things about you my little nugget.


I have a feeling I will never stop being amazed at all of the things you do.  Watching you learn new tricks and reach milestones makes my heart burst- I am so proud of you and I love seeing you proud of yourself.  You love to grab your toes and move yourself all over your play mat, but you haven't quite mastered the back to front roll yet {you are so so close!}.  You LOVE to stand up with assistance, obviously, and you grab anything and everything within reach and stick it in your mouth.  Your two teeth are getting bigger and they are SHARP. You could probably bite the tip of my finger OFF completely if I didn't yank it out of your mouth.


You are starting to get more comfortable again with other people holding you, much to the delight of our family and friends.  You also love to show your sweet smile to strangers when we are out and about and everyone comments on how big your eyes are and how adorable you are!


Your changing table is still one of your favorite places to be in the house.  You get so excited, dance and twist around and squeal with delight, whether you're getting a diaper or outfit change or getting ready for naps/bedtime.


It's been a little tougher getting you to fall asleep on your own this month.  You still do it but there are more tears than I would like...you used to just coo and talk yourself to sleep and now you cry out and look towards the door to see if it was enough to get me to come back in the room.  Sneaky, sneaky boy.  Last night though, you had your best night's sleep EVER and slept for 11 hours straight!!  You still wake up without making a sound, though, in the mornings except for a quick cough.  It's so funny.  You just lay in there and play and then look so happily surprised when I come in the room to get you.  Your smile alone makes me a morning person.



You are so cute and your smile is unbelievable.  I never knew how it would feel to have my baby looking up at me and smiling like I hung the moon, but holy crap it's amazing.  Being your mama is the hardest and most rewarding thing I have ever done.  You are such a joy and I know I am beyond lucky and blessed to be with you each and every day.  I love you the most, my sweet baby Duke, always and forever.  Thank you for another amazing month!  Slow down this next one for me, k?


-Mama T-

Why would anyone want to sell Rodan and Fields?

I want Duke to know that if you work hard and go after your dreams, you can do amazing things. I had to decide to stop being afraid of what others would think.  Social media marketing for small and personal businesses is blowing up right now. And for the most part, I see women empowering other women and I love it.  What kind of example would I be setting for Duke if I didn't go after a dream because I was afraid of what others would think?
Whether you're selling books, t-shirts, jewelry, makeup or skin care, you're selling something you believe in.  You're telling your friends and family about products you love...don't we do that with everything?  Restaurants, hair dressers, clothing stores, etc.  You're making a name for yourself. You're working hard for your family. 
Maybe you want to get out of debt, buy a house, save for your kid's college, or have more discretionary income to donate to your favorite charity...whatever your motivation, don't be afraid to go after it!
This is my motivation... I was laid off shortly after Duke turned 3 months old and only 2 weeks after going back to work, which gave me the opportunity to stay home with my sweet boy.  But it was so scary...would we be able to make ends meet?  Would we just end up in a pile of debt {bigger than the one we're already in?}  We plan to have more babies and I would love it if I could choose to stay home with them while still providing for my family.  I will always work hard to provide for my people and I am over the moon excited to start this new journey!

Rodan + Fields is a wonderful skin care company.  Have you heard of Proactiv?  The same two amazing women who developed Proactiv, have developed Rodan + Fields.  Acne, eczema, wrinkles, dark spots...do you have skin!?  There is literally a product for everyone.  Curious? Message me or get your custom product recommendation HERE.  Not interested but want to support me?  Like/Comment on my posts and follow my journey!

Don't forget to check back tomorrow for Duke's 5 month update! I'd say I can't believe my little firecracker baby is 5 months old, but the way this boy is learning and growing, I'm surprised he's not starting Kindergarten. ;)  See you tomorrow!

-T- 

New Mama Life

The other day I half-convinced myself I could be a successful comedian because Duke was laughing so hard at me waving a pillow back and forth.  Let's assume I hadn't had any coffee yet or was otherwise delusional.  But the truth is, motherhood is literally wiping liquid excrement off another person's back one minute, and filling out your application for Last Comic Standing the next.  Kids have this amazing, uncanny ability to make life absolutely amazing and utterly terrifying, all in the time it took you to microwave your cup of coffee for the 14th time.


Motherhood is nitty gritty sometimes and it's not all Pinterest crafts and Instagram moments, but that's what makes it the greatest joy in my life.  Even in those moments when I'm staring into the gaping hole that is my baby's mouth as he screams until his little head is so red it might be purple, every fiber of my being is working to figure out how I can make it all better.  And when I do, and he's smiling up at me with his gummy grin again, I feel like a superhero.  It's my job to make this itty bitty human into a fully-functional, thriving adult someday.  But more importantly, I exist to love the crap out of this kid.  Some days might be long, but there can never be too many snuggles, giggles, and kisses for my boy.



There are days I have such high hopes and a long mental-list of things I'm going to accomplish.  Half of them are admittedly unrealistic to start BUT that doesn't mean I don't wake up like today really is going to be the day I dust the ceiling fans, bake apricot scones, take a shower AND put make-up on and then go grocery shopping and meal plan for the week in between reading Duke 27 books and teaching him baby sign language.  Ironically, those are usually the days that Duke's to-do list says "don't let mom set me down for more than 3.5 minutes at a time."  Thus is the season of life we're in right now.  And I love this season.




One thing I have learned that makes me not only a better mama, but a better wife and friend, is making sure that I take time for myself.  Whether that's a dinner out with friends {like Taco Tuesday tonight!} or aimlessly wandering the aisles of Target by myself, it helps to reset and refresh myself so I can come back home and love on my family.  I feel like I am constantly "on" all day with Duke, smiling/singing/dancing/narrating our lives, etc., so mentally I have to take a break every once in awhile so that Dennis doesn't always come home to a zombie-wife.


To all you mamas out there, new or seasoned, you are doing a great job!  Don't forget to give yourself grace, don't feel guilty if you need some time alone, and most importantly, don't forget to love yourself in the midst of giving so much love to your family.

Happy Tuesday everyone!

-T-
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