Tag Archives: niece

Wordless Wednesday (almost)…the holidays, in pictures.

This is the first year that my family has staggered the holidays in such a perfect way that we’ve not only had a chance to see each other in various family settings (baking cookies with my sisters, niece and mom, celebrating Christmas at my dad’s with my sisters and niece, celebrating with M’s family, and finally, hosting Christmas at our house for the first time ever, with my sister Jess and Scott and my mom – sans grandparents who weren’t feeling well, though we did get a ‘virtual’ visit via Skype!), it’s felt busy-ish but not rushed, savored, not blurry, and with the right level of balance I am striving for right now. In a word, this holiday so far has been: perfect.

So I give you an almost wordless Wednesday, the holidays, in pictures. Cheers!

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Showering my niece in the girliest of girly clothes, and she *had* to model them for us. She is *such* a girl! <3
Showering my niece in the girliest of girly clothes, and she *had* to model them for us. She is *such* a girl! ❤
Celebrating Christmas bestie-style. A long time coming!
Celebrating Christmas bestie-style. A long time coming!
Moments of Isabel sprinkled throughout the weekend. And when she reaches for a hug and a kiss, it's evident that she has a heart just like her namesake, my Nonna. SO loving (just like my sister Jen, too!) <3
Moments of Isabel sprinkled throughout the weekend. And when she reaches for a hug and a kiss, it’s evident that she has a heart just like her namesake, my Nonna. SO loving (just like my sister Jen, too!) ❤
Capturing some family shots. I LOVE the picture I captured of my dad gathering Isabel up into a giant 'dad hug' and kiss.
Capturing some family shots. I LOVE the picture I captured of my dad gathering Isabel up into a giant ‘dad hug’ and kiss.
The holidays wouldn't even be complete without some fitdates with besties and my 'kindred' Meaghan, and lots and lots of barre n9ne action!
The holidays wouldn’t even be complete without some fitdates with besties and my ‘kindred’ Meaghan, and lots and lots of barre n9ne action!
Brunch is most definitely going to become a new tradition for Christmas! It was delish! Menu: mini bagels, cream cheese and lox, crackers and cheese, stuffed mushrooms, craisin/walnut/apple/spinach salad, potato leek soup, and for 'dessert' - greek yogurt with pear/apple/pomegranate seeds, walnuts, granola and flax (a yogurt 'bar'!), and the best cinnamon rolls I have EVER had (thank you sis!!), topped off with prosecco/mimosas!
Brunch is most definitely going to become a new tradition for Christmas! It was delish! Menu: mini bagels, cream cheese and lox, crackers and cheese, stuffed mushrooms, craisin/walnut/apple/spinach salad, potato leek soup, and for ‘dessert’ – greek yogurt with pear/apple/pomegranate seeds, walnuts, granola and flax (a yogurt ‘bar’!), and the best cinnamon rolls I have EVER had (thank you sis!!), topped off with prosecco/mimosas!
A few candids/bloopers always make it fun ;-)
A few candids/bloopers always make it fun 😉
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FEF: volume II

Awhile back, I waxed poetic blogged about it being ‘finally effing Friday’ (hello longer than LONG week and chock to the brim with activity!) and today? It feels warranted to celebrate FEF yet again.

Because it’s been another doozy. Mostly in a good way. Just one of those weeks where I felt like M and I were ships passing in the night (we had one meal together this week, and tonight won’t even have that!). And not even so much because I fell back on my motto to simplify either, just a week where M had lots of meetings after work and I had several evening plans as well. But in the choas of this week comes a few very fabulous things I am loving. So, celebrate, shall we?

I am loving sister dinners.

As part of my quest to make more room in my life for what matters most, sister dinners was a top priority. These nights are so special and NEEDED for the three of us, to really connect as sisters, without our men, or families, or anyone, around, just us. Being silly. Sharing in a glass of wine (something my sister Jen rarely gets a chance to do!). Laughing. Venting. Catching up.

And sometimes a special guest joins us to make it that much more perfect. This Wednesday was sister dinner WITH that special guest…my niece Isabel. She is at SUCH a fun age, and she melted me into a million pieces with her running full speed in for a hug, her kiss on the lips and how she says ‘hi auntie’ in the cutest little voice I have ever heard. She’s also a fan of the selfie and we took many of those to capture the night. My most favorite collage of all time below 🙂

Sister dinners…worth the busy week to cram in and do right.

I am loving my expanding role in barre n9ne.

Another reason my week was so busy – but in a valued, good way (just so happened that everything got planned for the same week, M’s busy week and mine, the perfect storm for ships passing in the night!), was a long-awaited meeting of the b9 minds (LOL. That would be me, Jess and Tanya) to discuss even more ways to make barre n9ne better, bigger, and stronger. My sister and I are officially taking on more of a marketing/PR/social media role at the studio to help make this happen and I couldn’t be more excited.

Melding my passion with what I’m good at (PR/social media)? Perfection.

And, helping even more with the 60 day challenge, refining it further, helping clients be successful? A dream.

Bringing in new events, features, and classes and teaching even more? Words cannot describe.

And, I am loving looking back at the past four (!) years since I began my journey anew. 

You see, Tara at Relative Evolutions asked me to write a guest post for her on my evolution, from then, until now (she’s had quite the journey herself, and I am so proud of her, and happy to see where she is now!!). And it’s taken me weeks and weeks of ruminating on just how I wanted to capture it, and the inspiration to put it all together. Here is the finished piece, and I am so proud of it, and my journey. I don’t write on the topic nearly as much, but it just makes my heart happy, proud, and filled with gratitude about my life now.

So, while I am celebrating FEF fervently today, I am feeling grateful (albeit relieved the week is nearing an end). And I am feeling so fortunate to be surrounded by those I care about. Because this weekend? It’s Friendsgiving, folks. Third annual, and it’s going to be the best one yet 😉 Hope you have a fabulous weekend, shaking off a long week, and enjoying a much deserved weekend! Cheers!

A story of sisterhood.

Growing up as a triplet is a unique experience in so many ways. It’s truly so hard to explain to those that are only children or have older or younger siblings, especially because being a triplet is all I have ever known (especially since we don’t have any other siblings).

I think the biggest thing about being a triplet is the role it plays in our lives, from childhood to adulthood in terms of stepping back and ‘who’s on first’ (for lack of a better term).

This may sound pretty obvious, but as triplets, there is an inherent urge to ‘compete’ and ‘be on first’ since there is naturally much less of an ability for that, growing up exactly the same age, doing exactly the same things at exactly the same time.

But there are just times when you need to step back. Take the backseat and let one (or both) of your sisters shine. Be ‘on first.’  And ultimately, to be the proud sister supporting, quietly, strong. There.

~~

There are two distinct examples of this in recent years. The first one is when my sister Jen had my niece Isabel two years ago. As the first to bring a child into this world, naturally, the focus was on her, and my niece. But as there were some major complications with my niece’s birth and several months of health issues to follow for my sister, life became all hands on deck, supporting her, helping get her back to health and help take care of our beautiful niece. It was honestly a very scary time, my fear that my sister was…well, very ill, was one of the scariest feelings. And I just wanted to take it all away for her and carry some of that physical burden. And then…she recovered. She grew stronger. We banded together and supported.

And from that point forward, seeing my sister flourish as a mother, getting through an extremely difficult and traumatic health experience and stepping into the role of mother has been one of the proudest times for me as a sister. As she experienced something neither Jess or I ever have, and had, for the first time, experienced something completely different than either Jess or I had. She is a shining example of what I hope to ever achieve as a mother one day, the devotion, love, and strength she carries for my niece is incredible.

And while this experience, to this day, signaled the first time we were going through a life experience differently, separately…not the same (as our lives had paralleled in so many ways all the way through life)…the one common factor in all of this?

Support.

Stepping back.

Allowing her to ‘be on first’ and supporting her throughout as much as we possibly could. And from that experience onward? I don’t think our bond as sisters could be much stronger than it is now. Even though we are now living our lives differently, in so many ways. We still share the common bond, the sisterhood, the support, and the love that is indescribable.

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The second example of this is this weekend. My sister Jess’s first marathon. While I won’t detail anything about the race itself, since she will do that herself and do it plenty more justice than I ever could, watching it all unfold was simply one of the proudest moments for me as a sister. The outpouring of support. Twitter, Facebook, emails, texts, phone calls. Support, support, support. 

Preparing to run sherpa their race, I knew this weekend was going to be incredible. A blur. And, honestly? Work. I knew it would take a lot of support, planning and running around to help make this happen for her. To help keep her calm (even with a near-Healthy Bites disaster!!). To make sure she felt ready. To carry her big ass bag of post-race needs as M and I hoofed it miles and miles and more miles to the start, mile 8, mile 15 and mile 26.2 to run sherpa our asses off (and freeze them off too!!). And to allow her to ‘be on first.’ 

Not once did I feel like I wish I was out there running with her (okay, maybe once, when I realized I could have planned to hop in for a few miles to run alongside her! Hindsight.). Not once did I feel sad that we weren’t sharing this together. (because we were, truthfully!) I just felt pride, joy and happiness. Tweeting out updates left and right. Fielding texts and emails for updates and requests for pictures all morning long….gave me joy. I loved seeing her ‘on first’ and getting all of the support and love that she deserves.

And when she crossed that finish line, I think I may have rivaled how proud they both felt. As tears rolled down my cheeks and I shakily tweeted “Ahhhh there they go! Hand in hand!!!! #teamsutera #finish #runsherpa”, I was happy. Simply happy beyond words. And I still am.

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I share this story because it has been a time of reflection for me lately. Thinking about my tendencies as a sister and the shift I have really worked hard at in terms of the comparison trap, the competing for ‘being on first’ that has inherently been a part of our lives our entire lives. I no longer get the urge to want to do what my sisters do simply because they are doing them and I want to do it together. I just find ways to share in their separate joys with them, my way.

For Jen, it was stepping into backup mom role with midnight feedings when she was ill, and taking her to doctor’s appointments (as tough as those appointments could be sometimes, I, to this day, look at them fondly as sister days, where Jen and I grew closer than ever. I am pretty sure she is thinking of the very same appointment I am, as she reads this!). And it is working on being the best aunt I can be, spending time with my niece, learning from her, teaching her. <–I am still really working on this, and finding more time to spend together. It is my vow, sis!

For Jess, it has been finding my role in supporting her training for a marathon. When she first decided she wanted to do a marathon, my first thought was ‘I wish I wanted to run a marathon’ and as much as I tried to want it…I just didn’t. And that was okay. It was a turning point for me in realizing I don’t have to do what either of my sisters does. And writing this down and admitting that I used to feel that way, while hard, feels triumphant.

Because now? I am the proudest sister on the planet, of both of my sisters and their different paths, while I create my own path and life in this world that is truly me and mine.  

I love you sisters, and I am truly thankful for you each and every day. ❤

Best. Friday Morning. Ever.

Alarm clock goes off at 5:08 am (because 5:05 feels *much* earlier).

*groan. yawn. give M a kiss* (and surprised he gets up with me instead of sleeping in another hour!)

On the road by 5:20 to get to 6 am barre n9ne method class (the best way to start a Friday, I am convinced…not to mention the longest.week.ever. Felt like 49 days long or something).

*trying to psych myself up for a 3 miler post-barre with Steph, even though it’s chilly and I’m tireeddddd*

*fabulous* class 6-7 am.

Debate outdoor 3 mile loop with Steph. Know I’m tight on time, and she is too. And feeling slightly wussy in 35 degree temps when we’ve had temps in 50-70 degree range the last week. Quick change of plans: quick run at my sister Jess’s house (5 mins away, you’ll see why I’m going there anyway in a sec…).

7:21 am. Bang out 2.5 miles…wanted 3, but didn’t have time. And a shame, too, because it was actually one of those ‘can run all day’ feelings, surprisingly (even though I thought to myself, how much I didn’t *really* feel like running and if it started to feel like ‘junk miles’ I’d stop. Go figure! No junk! Whee!).

7:45 am. *Fly* through a quick shower at my sister’s with 5 minutes to spare, because I had a very important coffee date and I didn’t want to be late! So what did my lovely sister do? She packed up our obsessed favorite oatmeal into a tupperware so I could eat it as I drove (seriously, that was genius, and it was SO GOOD, even as I carefully drove and ate!).

8:09 am. I went on my merry way, grabbed two coffees on the way and made it to my other sister Jen’s by 8:32 (so I was late by 2 mins…).

Why all the rush-rush this morning? Why, to spend a cherished hour with my sister Jen and my beautiful niece Isabel, of course! (this worked out perfectly as I had a dentist appointment at 9:30 down the street, because yes, I still go to the same dentist since I was 4 years old. I do not care that it is now more than 30 miles away!).

And it was worth every minute of coordination and rush-rush to get there because Isabel was in an absolutely fabulous mood and we had the MOST fun at our auntie/sister coffee/playdate!!

A photo recap says it all:

I think she can see herself at this point, in the camera and starts waving to herself. *cuteness*
And finally, we're both in the picture, and semi-smiling. Success!

Besides that highlight of the morning, Isabel is learning to say my name!!! She says ‘hi jo!’ if Jen says it first, and oh my Gosh, that is the cutest thing EVER to hear out of your niece’s mouth. Best. Ever!

After hugs, kisses (‘blowing kisses’ and kisses on the lips too!), and far too much fun crammed into about 50 minutes, I left my sister Jen’s house with a huge grin on my face, and waved as they waved goodbye at me from the window. My heart felt explosive with joy and love…this was by far one of my favorite memories with my niece and sister in awhile, and sometimes, it’s those unexpected moments that mean so much. It truly has been the best. Friday morning. Ever. (even with the dentist, I love getting my teeth cleaned!)

**This weekend has felt like a long time coming…lots on tap, including a sushi lunch date with some fabulous women (Jess, Meaghan and Samantha!!), a visit to my grandparents (corned beef and cabbage? YES PLEASE! No, seriously, I LOVE corned beef and cabbage and I’m not even Irish!) and much-needed catch-up time with M. Cheers friends, make it a goodie!**

NOTE: if you cannot comment on my post, I understand from WordPress that you must create a WordPress login in order to comment. It’s ass-backward if you ask me, commenting should be OPEN, but I digress. If it’s not working for you and you want to comment, that’s the only thing I’ve heard that works. Sorry, friends! :/