You aren’t old but…

The other day a friend told me her younger brother was about to turn 25. I was shocked. How on earth could he be 25 already? Then I realized my younger brother was the same age as hers. I had been telling people he was 22 or 23 for the past three years. So, how did he get to be 25 when I am 25?

Turns out I am not 25 anymore. And although I am not old by any means (young 27), I sometimes forget that I am aging. I have always considering myself somewhat of a late bloomer. Not in a super delayed sort of way or an immature sort of way, I have just always progressed at my own pace. While most of my peers were wearing Dr. Martens and shopping at Abercrombie & Fitch, I was just discovering Old Navy and creating imaginary friends and adding Pooh Bear stickers to my trapper keeper. While my friends were out kissing boys, I was busy making my older brother’s friends sandwiches and hoping they would at least say hello to me in the hallway at school. The summer before senior year of high school one of my best friends was taking me to drivers ed every day- she had her license almost two years before me. And of course, my most recent delayed accomplishment was earning my bachelor’s degree about five years later than most.
I am not upset about any of these “delayed” starts. They have shaped me in to who I am today, and I believe that taking my sweet time on some things has allowed me to get to know myself better. I have been very please with what I have accomplished so far in my life and look forward to every thing that lies ahead- and it doesn’t matter if I am “behind” or not.
And that brings me to the point of this blog post. Once a girl gets married and graduates from college there is a pressure brought on by society and a never ending question of…”When are you going to have a baby?” And lets be honest, it is a pretty good question. I still haven’t figured out the answer to it.
It doesn’t really upset me when I get asked because I get it. Justin and I are going to make amazingly adorable babies. We shouldn’t keep the world waiting. And it doesn’t bother me because frankly, I am asking myself the same question. And when I think about having a child I think I actually have to birth the sucker and that is terrifying! So, I decided to develop a, “Before Baby Bucket List.” Makes sense right? What do I need to accomplish to make myself feel like I am ready and even old enough to be a Mom.
Before Baby Bucket List
  • Begin my career. I don’t anticipate wanting to be a stay at home Mom, so I want to get my feet wet before needing to take off for maternity leave.
  • Justin’s job needs to settle down. He has been really busy and really stressed. Needless to say, adding a baby wouldn’t make those feelings go away- no matter how cute.
  • Get in better shape. I want to make my body as healthy as possible so my baby has the best possible environment to grow in. That means cleaner eating.
  • Put a budget together. I know, babies are expensive and you can never really afford them, but we may as well get some things in order first.
  • Pay off our “mini mortgage.” I don’t fully understand it, but we have two. Justin tried to explain it and he loses me every time.
  • Find a church. We’d really like to find a church to call “ours” before having a child. We hope to start visiting local churches soon!
  • Paint the upstairs bathroom. Bright blue with a dreadful quote may give the baby bad taste in home decor.
  • Paint the downstairs bathroom. Sponge paint might confuse the baby on whether or not it was born in the 2010s or the 1990s.
  • Paint the upstairs family room. I heard ghastly greens are bad for their development.
  • Start a garden. I’d like to be able to make my own baby food with some home grown produce!
  • Take a BIG vacation. Back to Europe anyone? Or perhaps a visit to the New Zealand relatives?
Some people have said having a Before Baby Bucket list is a good idea while others have told us we are crazy. So let us know what you think…or don’t. Either way, people typically ask pretty private questions so why not pipe up now that I am sharing it here. Plus, we are willing to take suggestions if you think we should add to it!
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Reflections of the Summer

It is hard to believe I haven’t posted since my return from Europe. The summer quickly flew by after I returned. Many Minnesotans were complaining of the hot and humid weather, and I of course couldn’t get enough of it this year. Since England and Ireland turned out to be cold and rainy I feel like I haven’t gotten my required three months of warmth yet.

This is also the palest I have been during the summer months. I haven’t been on the river relaxing and allowing my skin to be sun kissed- with the proper protection of course. I am about to enter my 8th full weekend home. If you think about it, that is a pretty short summer and it is hard to get all your favorite activities in.

When I returned from Europe I felt like someone had shocked me. I had a renewed zest for life, and I wanted to take full advantage of everything life has to offer. Although some of that zest quickly faded away, reality and the need for an income can have that effect on zest, I have been holding on to whatever the experience gave me with a tight grip.

Some of the fun things I have done this summer: walked Selby, Bradshaw/Borntrager sleepover, Color Run 5k, 2nd Annual Couple’s Retreat at Camp Ripley, Dirty Girl Mud Run 5k, started reading for fun again, put a vote NO sign in our yard, date night at the Guthrie, celebrated the London Olympics with Shepard’s Pie, played with Lainey, spent time with family- including a lunch with God Mother, Mother and MOH, bought Nutella, ate Nutella, attended a good friend’s wedding, touched a cow at the Pierce County Fair, went to Cup N’ Cone…a lot, played volleyball with friends, tested out some new recipes including beet risotto, ate my first peach, caught up with some Army friends, celebrated Selby’s and Justin’s birthday, enjoyed happy hours, slept in, took naps…

Color Run 5k

Some of my favorite ladies! 

Dirty Girl Mud Run 5k

Rachel & Mike’s Wedding in Red Wing, MN.

My pooch.

Lainey. 

Well, if you put it that way, I have done a lot in the past eight weeks! There are still some things I wanted to do this summer and haven’t been able to, but when I look back at my four weeks in London and eight weeks at home I really have nothing to complain about. I will keep the memory of the unbelievable summer of 2012 close to my heart. And when life gets busy, and I forget to stop and really live each day, I will channel that energy, call a friend, and do something crazy.