Six Months With You

July 12, 2018

Happy half birthday to my little love.

I dreamt of you long before I was able to meet you… I wondered what you would look like, what your personality would be like.. I wondered which ways you would be like daddy and which ways you would be like me.

I had some clues about you before you were born. I knew you would be strong and active, you told me by the way you seemed to never rest for very long in my tummy and the way my belly contorted into the weirdest shapes when you were stretching and moving around. I learned that you like to snuggle, since you decided to stay nestled in tight in my tummy until 2 weeks past your due date. I knew you would be happy… Daddy and I were so curious about you, we had a 3D ultrasound and saw you smile when I was 25 weeks pregnant… I didn’t even know babies that little could smile in their mommy’s tummy, but you did.

I have loved discovering more about you every day since you arrived six months ago. You are beautiful and bright, you are curious and captivating. You are spunky and spirited, you are silly, you are sweet, you are strong. You are more than we could have ever asked for and we can’t believe you are ours.

I am trying to cherish your littleness every day. I want to remember the way it feels when you snuggle into me, the way you smile when I sing “What a Wonderful World”, the way you look at me when I’m pushing you in your stroller, and the way you smile at me proudly when you learn something new. There have been some tears from mama in the last week. I cried when you were showing me how you could sit up for so long without help (I know, this seems silly to cry about, but the way you looked at me, I could tell you wanted me to be proud of you… I am..), I cried when we put you to sleep last night in your crib in your own room instead of the bassinet in mommy and daddy’s room, and I cried because I knew you were ready and I wasn’t. And I have tears writing this now because I am just so darn happy that you are here…

I remember going past my due date with you. Two weeks to be exact. There are so many things in life we have no control over and this was one of them. I tried to stay positive and but I was scared… Just over a year before your due date, I found out about our miscarriage. We wanted a baby so bad but at the time, it wasn’t meant to be. Because of this, I spent most of my pregnancy irrationally worrying that I wouldn’t get to meet you. It wouldn’t feel real until you were there in my arms. So 6 months ago, 40 hours after being induced, and after 2 long hours of pushing, you arrived. You were here in my arms, alert and observant, with 10 perfect fingers and toes, with daddy right by my side, and I bawled tears of relief and happiness and it was the BEST moment of my entire life.

To say I love you, Mila, is the greatest understatement.

Here is a 6 minute video to celebrate the last 6 months with you. ♥️

#rainbowbaby

#momentswithmilarose

#6monthsold

Advertisements

On Living Abroad 


It’s been 2 years and 3 months since I’ve lived in Vancouver now. It is an amazing place to live and I am so lucky to live here, but it’s probably taken me about this long to really feel like I could call this place my home. Ever since I was about 16 years old, I knew I wanted to move away for college and part of me didn’t think I would ever move back home after.

I originally wanted to move to NYC for undergrad, but chickened out when application time came. I ended up starting my adult life in San Diego, and when I was 22 I moved off to NYC for graduate school, following my dream. Shortly before moving to NYC, I found my soulmate, and he would end up taking me on a path I had never foreseen, a wonderful and exciting one. And after 4 years in NYC, I ended up here in beautiful BC, the place he was lucky enough to have called home his whole life. Some of my patients ask me why a girl from Southern California is living up here, as if it seems crazy… and I have to convince them how beautiful it is here and how great of a place it is to live. Sometimes I wonder if I’m trying to convince them or myself.

But I truly do love it here. Up here, the air is clean, nature is lush, the skies are bluer, and I am constantly in awe of the natural beauty surrounding me. The city is vibrant, people are active and healthy, and there are dogs everywhere (I LOVE that part)!

What’s made it so hard for me to call this place home isn’t the lack of beauty or endless amount of things to do… What truly makes a place home, is that feeling of comfort that you get when you’re with those who make you feel safe, understood, welcome, and for lack of a better word, loved. To me, what I just described is the true meaning of family. And for me, family can extend beyond blood relatives.

I have met some pretty incredible people here and am lucky to have been taken in and accepted so quickly by Matt’s family. It is only now, 2 years and 3 months later, that I can look back and realize it’s been a while since I’ve cried thinking of how much I miss my family or friends that I left in Chino Hills, San Diego, or New York and how hard it is to “make a family” out here.

But today, I cried again. My mom and dad are visiting Vancouver and I got to see videos my mom had taken of my 10 week old nephew (who lives in San Francisco) who I’ve been lucky enough to have seen TWICE before he was 7 weeks old. I watched at least a dozen short videos of him cooing, smiling, or even just laying there observing his surroundings. Matt reminded me we had to get going so I could prepare for my next day at work but all I wanted to do was sit there and watch those videos… because I realized those videos would be the closest I would get to holding, touching, smelling, or kissing my baby nephew and I don’t want him to grow up and miss it all. I told Matt after we left my parent’s hotel how that felt and I just started crying. This time I let myself cry, and didn’t feel ashamed or try to stop myself from thinking that I should be over it by now.

I realized it makes me human to feel this way, and although living abroad seems amazing and adventurous, sometimes it hurts. So my message to myself after all of this is to cherish each moment with those you love because when we leave this earth, all people will have of us is the memories we made with them.

xo,

Juliana

Rendezvous in Vegas

Vegas holds a special place in our hearts… which is kind of a weird thing to say. Vegas is the place where he first told me he loved me. Vegas is the place where his dreams came true when he won his first World Series of Poker bracelet. But most of all, Vegas will always be special to me because it’s the place where we first met. We’ve come back to Vegas more times than a normal human being should ever be in Vegas without actually living there… but this is the first time we’ve stayed at Bellagio since that night almost 5 years ago when our paths crossed inside The Bank nightclub inside Bellagio. What was supposed to be just another spring break trip turned out to change my life forever. It still amazes me to think of all the things that had to happen in order for us to meet that night. If any number of things had gone even slightly different, I never would have met my husband. I am so thankful for everything that had to happen for the universe to bring that fun-loving, always smiling, sporty, goofy, and chivalrous Canadian to me that day.

20140130-DSC_0286

 

20140130-DSC_0232

20140130-DSC_0275

20140130-DSC_0304

20140130-DSC_0296

20140130-DSC_0297

20140130-DSC_0311

20140130-DSC_0314

20140130-DSC_0329-2

20140130-DSC_0281

20140130-DSC_0292

20140130-DSC_0278

20140130-DSC_0326

20140130-DSC_0273

20140130-DSC_0338

xo,

Juliana

p.s. Happy Superbowl Sunday!!

Our Day After Session

Weddings are so beautiful… even after all the planning was over, and now even when the wedding is over, I still find myself watching the occasional Say Yes to the Dress and all of the fun TLC shows that cater to hopeless romantics like me. Our wedding on September 28, 2013 was the BEST day of my entire life. Walking down the aisle to the love of my life and hearing his beautiful vows, followed by an outpouring of love by our dearest friends and family and dancing the night away until we literally were shut down are things I will never ever forget.

And as beautiful as weddings are, they are incredibly complex in ways I never even imagined. No wonder girls dream about their wedding since they are little girls…no wonder why, because there are SO many elements to consider, one of which is to decide whether or not you’ll have a “first look”. What exactly does that entail? Well, this is a somewhat new concept where the bride and groom have a big reveal before the ceremony begins. What are some of the pros, you may ask?

1. More photos/time: A first look allows for more bride and groom portraits. Most weddings have a ceremony, followed by cocktail hour, which then leads right into the reception. That leaves exactly one hour for family portraits on both sides, wedding party photos, and bride and groom portraits. And notice, I only mentioned photos. In that time, sometimes brides change their hairstyle or dress, or just need a moment to sit down, have a bite to eat and take it all in with their new hubby! Having a first look allows extra time for these photos that don’t have to be crammed into cocktail hour. In addition to this, you can figure out a creative way to reveal yourself to your groom, and this creates more excitement and can make for some awesome photos.

2. Less anxiety: Seeing your future hubby/future wifey before the ceremony can relieve a lot of anxiety on a potentially stressful day that you have been planning for many many months. You can get out those tears of happiness before you walk down the aisle (if you don’t want those tears to come in front of your guests), and this lets you have a little make-up retouch if those tears start a-flowin’. It can also give both of you peace of mind that you don’t have a runaway bride/groom. 😉

Okay, so there are definitely cons, as well.

1. It breaks a very old tradition: If you’re a traditional bride, you may be flabbergasted by the thought of a first look. I definitely was and I don’t even consider myself a traditional bride. In my mind and my husband’s, the biggest and most important tradition of a wedding is that the groom is NOT to see the bride before she walks down the aisle. They separate after rehearsal dinner and all family members and bridal party members immediately become body guards to ensure the groom does not lay eyes on the bride until that moment when “Here Comes the Bride” plays.

2. That moment you walk down the aisle is not quite the same: Now this is my personal opinion. It was something both my husband and I feared would happen if he saw me before ceremony. One of my favorite moments when I attend weddings or watch wedding shows, or even any movie with a wedding ceremony in it is that very moment when the groom gets to see his beautiful bride walking down the aisle. I love the expressions, the smiles, the tears, the gasps of that very special man in that woman’s life who is filled with so much emotion at seeing his glowing bride walk towards him to vow to spend the rest of her life with him.

So after weighing the pros and cons, Matt and I decided, a first look was not for us. We think some of the first look photos and reveals are filled with emotion and absolutely gorgeous, but it was a tradition we wanted to keep on our wedding day. We instead decided to opt for a modified first look, a pseudo-first-look, if you will. Matt was blindfolded, but instead of removing the blindfold when I finally tapped on his shoulder and he turned around, the blindfold remained covering his eyes. We were able to steal that special, quiet moment together where we could cry our tears, then pull ourself together, and we could just calm each other’s nerves. It made for a cool photo-op as well. Now, don’t get me wrong. It took me a very long time to come to this decision, and even after I did, there was some flip-flopping but in the end, we stuck with our guts, which is something I would definitely recommend. Our pseudo-first-look ended up being perfect for us.

The other thing that helped our decision to nix a First Look was the concept of a Day After Session. It is also sometimes known as a Trash the Dress session. It’s a great opportunity to put on seemingly the most important dress of your entire life just one more time to get some beautiful portraits of you and your hubs that you may not have had time for on the big day. BINGO. Nailed it on the head for us. Micah of Micah & Megan Photography trekked up to Mount Baldy, California with us while we were back in town for Thanksgiving for these shots. We absolutely love how it was all captured.  I will let the photos tell the rest of the story.

Check out more of Micah & Megan’s amazing amazing work here!

xo,

Juliana

Inspire Me, Mon Ami

It has been quite a while since I have taken the time to blog. I absolutely love browsing and reading all types of blogs, from food blogs, to fashion and beauty blogs, to tech blogs, or photography blogs, I love it all. I think there is something so valuable about sharing your thoughts in a place where you can easily look back and revisit that very moment when you took the time to open up your mind to share something with your friends, your family, the cyber world, or the universe in general. I want this blog to be about anything and everything that inspires me. I’m sure it will be random at times, but that’s me. So hey world, inspire me, mon ami. 🙂