Project Life: Finishing 2015


I really enjoyed doing my Project Life album for 2015. I think it will be a fun keepsake and was a good photo book project for me last year, but I didn't think I would be able to keep up with it as well in 2016, so I'm not doing another one this year. (If you are confused about what Project Life is, click here.)

I did well keeping up until around October, and then I fell off the scrapbooking wagon. My album sat unfinished until about a month ago, when I got inspired one Saturday during R's nap and decided to finally knock some pages out.

If you were following my blog last year, you may remember that I shared some updates of my pages as the year went on (see links at the end of this post for those pages!). I left off at the very beginning of August, so below are a sampling of my favorite pages from R's birthday to the end of the year!

In case you're interested: 

The Last Three


I just got back from a run, which is something I haven't done in at least a week. 

I just haven't felt like it for some reason, and so instead of beating myself up about it, I said to myself, "Self, you're an adult and you don't have to go running if you don't want to." Instead, I have been doing some at-home workout videos on YouTube that have kicked my butt. I did Jillian Michaels "Shred It with Weights" level 1 and my legs were sore for two days after. Yesterday I did a twenty-minute core strength yoga video, and today my abs hurt every time I coughed, which was a lot because I have a cold thing going on right now that I can't seem to shake.

None of the above is related to this post, by the way. I just thought you might be interested in my recent attempts at being physically active, which is an attempt to combat the half batch of chocolate chip cookies I consumed over the weekend. That is absolutely not an exaggeration.

I didn't have a post planned for the rest of the week, but instead of leaving you hanging I thought I would share the last three pictures I've taken with my iphone. Call it a quasi coffee date/what's new post. Sorry not sorry that these all include my baby.

I am still using my lunch hour every single day to drive to the daycare and visit R. It absolutely makes my entire day when I see her sweet face, and I often try to take a picture to send to Jordan. This was from yesterday.


(Also taken yesterday.) We have a CRAWLER. It started about a week ago, and she is on the move, people! We moved everything from the bottom of the coffee table, and her most recent trick is to crawl under it and back out again. This was taken on the exit. Don't mind the yellow bath duckie in the background. We definitely do not put her in it and drag her around the house. Nope, we sure don't. I swear.

This picture cracks me up because her head looks giant and her legs look insanely long. I don't know. This was taken on Saturday. We took a trip to Target and found some discounted swimsuits, which were even cheaper after 20% off swimwear on cartwheel plus 5% off with my Red Card. I bought Miss R two suits for this summer, and I can't wait to take her to the pool!

p.s. You may have noticed that my blog got a makeover! I have had the same layout forever and thought it would be fun to mix it up a bit. It's simple, but I kind of love it. I am working on organizing more of my posts and pages, but feel free to search by topic in the menu above or by label on the sidebar. There is also a search bar if you want to find something specific.

We are over the hump, friends! It's all downhill to Memorial Day. We can do this!

What's one of the most recent pictures you've taken with your phone?

Where We Get Dressed Up and Embarrass Ourselves


Two weekends ago, Jordan and I celebrated our 5th anniversary. Our trip to Virginia this past March was our official anniversary trip, but we still wanted to do something to celebrate on our actual anniversary. 
We started the day of our anniversary (May 14) as we have every year for the past four years: with breakfast at iHop. I remember last year I was pregnant, and we were imagining a highchair at our table, and this year she's here! Such a blessing.

My parents drove up from Texas that afternoon to watch R while Jordan and I went to dinner, and then we did something crazy and stayed overnight in a hotel room while my parents stayed at our house with R. It was the longest I'd ever been away from her, and both of us survived just fine. Actually, we were just coming out of a bad couple of weeks in the sleeping department, so when my mom said, "So how are you feeling about being away from R overnight?" I said, "I'm kind of looking forward to it!" I blame the daily daycare drop-offs for my apparent heart of stone, but at least neither of us are in a codependent relationship. Right? Right?
Anyway. I can't go anywhere these days without having some kind of story to share on the blog, and our date night did not disappoint. A month ago, I made reservations at one of the nicest restaurants in the city, which is on the 49th floor of the tallest building in OKC. It's one of those places with an actual dress code, and let's just say, Jordan and I are not exactly the type of people who frequent restaurants of this caliber. Jordan in particular was basically breaking out in a cold sweat on our way downtown. 

There is a lot of construction right now, but since I work downtown I knew where to go. Even so, we had a bit of an issue trying to get to the right place (the original gate was closed and the credit card machine didn't work at the second gate, to name a few), and by the time we finally parked Jordan and I were both sweating and feeling stressed.

We rallied and made it inside, where we were escorted through the building to the elevator. (The restaurant is inside an office building, so there are extra measures taken to ensure people don't just go wandering around after office hours.)

Our ears literally popped on the way up, which was interesting.
We were seated at our table, and our server came over to ask if we wanted some wine. I don't normally get wine, but occasionally I will drink a glass if it's something really sweet, so I asked if she had anything to recommend that was sweet. She immediately launched into something about a wine that tasted like a hint of roses from such and such city in France, and she might as well have been speaking French for all I knew, but I said it sounded good and sure I'd take a glass.

Then she asked for my ID, and I realized that when I switched into my fancy red clutch, I had left my license at home in my wallet in the diaper bag.

"Oh, I'm sorry," she said and promptly whisked away both our wine glasses.

And I promptly started crying.

It wasn't that I had wanted a glass of wine so badly that I was crying because I couldn't get one but because we were already stressed out about the parking situation, and we were both all dressed up in this fancy restaurant, and now I felt shamed because my wine glasses were taken away. And then I was shamed because I was crying, which made me cry more, and I was just a hot mess.
Jordan, meanwhile, is staring at me incredulously because he just cannot understand what on earth is wrong with his crazy wife. "Um... do you, like, need to call your mom?" he says.

Bless his heart.

By the time the waitress came back to take our order, I had composed myself enough to order a salad, and then she asked, "What do you want for your entree?" and I realized like a moron that I had not even looked, so she had to come back to actually take our order.
Somewhere between our appetizer and entree, Jordan got up to go to the bathroom and banged his head against the light that was hanging between our table and one next to us (see photo below). Our waitress shouted, "OH MY ARE YOU OKAY?" And an entire table of people in suits and cocktail dresses turned to stare.
Clearly I can't just go to dinner and not have something ridiculous happen. Thankfully, it ended much better, and the free anniversary dessert certainly didn't hurt. Although I will tell you that at one point during the meal I ran out of conversation topics and ended up saying, "So, I have three shirts I need to iron." And Jordan said, "Okay?"

Apparently five years of marriage is when you start running out of things to talk about.

The second we walked out of the elevator, Jordan was like a completely different person. He visibly relaxed, and we realized we did, in fact, have more to talk about than wrinkled shirts. So that was a relief on multiple levels. We really just aren't cut out to be fancy.
I checked in with my mom (R was doing great!), and we drove to our hotel, where I slept like a baby until sunrise because uninterrupted sleep, you guys. Back home, the real baby woke my mom up at 2:30 and stayed awake for over an hour. Seriously, who came up with the phrase "slept like a baby"? It's just mean, is what it is.

The next morning we grabbed some bagels on our way home, and my mom and R were waiting for us on the front porch. She was very excited to see us! All in all, it was a great anniversary date, and we certainly celebrated in style. The food was excellent, the view was great, and bonus! We got a good story or two to laugh at later (once I, ahem, stopped crying).

Here's to year six!

links + loves vol. 2


Sharing some links and loves with you today!

Why Daycare Was My First Option, Not a Last Resort. Can I just hug this entire article?

Charlotte makes these really fun "What I Eat in a Day" videos. They are so well done, although they make me wish I ate as well as she does. I linked to her YouTube channel above, which has some really great videos from her travels in Europe (where she's from). She's one of my inspirations for making travel videos of my own.

I loved Beka's post about speaking hard truths into other people's lives. It's easy to share about God's goodness, but it's important to realize why we need Jesus and what he is saving us from.

Luna Stroller Organizer is so awesome! I bought it after seeing a friend's and I love it so much.

Have you seen this YouTube video? I don't care if this is real or fake; it's hilarious.

Cassie wrote a post that I loved sharing a letter to her atheist self. As someone who grew up in church and has been a Christian my entire life, it is so interesting to hear from someone who had such a different experience. God really can work miracles in people's lives and I think that's so cool.

31 People Who Are Nailing This Whole Marriage ThingSome of these had me cracking up! #12 IS MY LIFE. *Please excuse some of the swear words and inappropriate lines.

I've mentioned before that my dad does a podcast. I'm not just saying this because he's my dad, but I really do think he does a good job with it. Just like any podcast there are episodes you like more than others, and two of my recent favorites have been this one talking about creativity and this one talking to a guy who is walking around the world. Check it out if you have a chance!

Happy weekend, friends!

p.s. Links + Loves vol. 1

On Joy (Again)


If you know me in real life or have followed my blog over the past six months, you know that the transition to being a full-time working mom outside the home has not been easy for me. I know for some people it’s easier than for others, and I'm happy for them. For me, it’s been a struggle, and that’s putting it lightly.

I think part of the reason this has been so difficult for me is because I didn’t expect it to be difficult. I never imagined myself as a stay-at-home mom. I wasn’t one of those girls who dreamed of having tons of babies, quitting my job, and staying at home. So when it came time to go back to work after having R, I was surprised to discover that I didn’t want to work. I just wanted to stay at home with her.

The fact of the matter is, I have a really hard time spending so much time away from my daughter, and I’ve been wearing that fact as a rather large chip on my shoulder for the past six months. (Maybe that’s why my right shoulder is always so tight!) Blogging, which has always been good to me, has been a lonely place for me lately. So many bloggers are stay-at-home moms, and not only can I not relate to that, but reading about it makes me jealous and bitter.

I see posts about moms wanting nothing else but to go to the store alone and be able to walk around all by themselves. A vacation, they jokingly call it. And while that mind-set is completely understandable and valid in that situation, as a working mom I spend entirely too much time away from my baby, and all I want is to spend any and all free time I have with her.

I look back on the things I’ve written about finding joy and letting go of my lot in life, and while those sound really great, the fact is I don’t feel like I’m much better off in these areas than I was when I wrote them. This is discouraging because it makes me feel like I’m not making much progress when it comes to being content.

I was out for a run recently, and I started thinking about my joy and where it comes from. (What? You don’t have existential thoughts while exercising?)

As a Christian, I know that I need to find true joy in Jesus. In the Bible, Jesus talks about taking up our cross to follow him. He goes even further when he says this in Luke 14:26, “If any man comes to me and does not hate his father and mother and wife and children, such a person cannot be my disciple.”

This sounds a bit shocking if you really think about it. Why would God ask this of us? Does God really want us to hate our family?

The point here is not that God doesn’t want us to love our family. The point is that he wants us to love him first, and if something or someone is in the way of that, we need to reprioritize. He uses such vivid language to show us how serious this is, because our relationship with God affects everything else in our lives.

It was then that I had a startling revelation: my daughter has become an idol in my life and the place where I am finding joy. I am so full of happiness when I’m around her and so sad when I’m not, and it’s affecting me in so many other areas of my life, most importantly in my relationship with God but also in my relationships with my husband and my friends.

My daughter is a precious gift and a very important part of my life, but she is not the most important, nor should she be.

I think it’s good that I’ve realized this because now I can begin to take steps to change my attitude. That first involves prayer, and it involves consciously redirecting my thoughts when they start to take a negative turn. It involves truly rejoicing with friends who get to quit their jobs to stay at home; it means supporting those friends who work and are away from their babies; it means being thankful; it means finding joy in Jesus first and everything else a far second.

Maybe I will always be a working mom. Maybe I’ll quit my job in a year or three. I don’t know what will happen, but I need to accept where I am in this stage. I’m not saying I should settle, but I’m saying that for now this is what I am doing and what my life looks like, and I need to not only be okay with that but to find joy in it.

Just because I can’t be with my daughter all day doesn’t mean I can’t be joyful and fulfilled in my work. It doesn't mean I love my baby any less than any other mom just because I work outside the home. (I know that's obvious, but sometimes I still hear the voices telling me this!) She is doing great at daycare, and we have found a pretty good (albeit tiring) routine. And anyway, I shouldn’t be naïve enough to think that being with her all day would solve my problems; if anything, that would likely exacerbate the issue.

Surely there is someone reading this who can relate, perhaps not specifically to my exact situation, but because you have placed something or someone as an idol in your life that is affecting your joy and your relationship with God and others. My encouragement to you (and to myself!) is to not try to find joy in circumstances or your job or your children or your family but to search for joy in Jesus first.

It’s such a Christian cliché to end with a CS Lewis quote, but he really did say it best:

Look for yourself and you will find in the long run only hatred, loneliness, despair, rage, ruin, and decay. But look for Christ and you will find Him, and with Him everything else thrown in.

-CS Lewis, Mere Christianity

Around the House: One-Year Update


We have been living in our house for a year already! What? I don't know how that's possible, but anyway. I thought it would be fun to take you on an updated house tour to show you some of the things I've done over the past year. We still have a list of home projects to do that I need SOMEONE (ahem, Jordan's) help with, but since I am the woman, I handle all decorating. Because here in the Bumgarner household we feel very strongly in maintaining gender stereotypes. Hashtag feminism.

I've linked to the original post where appropriate so you can go back and see the comparison. Here I linked to a photo of our living room originally, and below is how it looks today!
We bought a new couch (see photo below), so we moved our white love seat into the front room, rearranged the other two pieces, and added a rug! My mom helped me put together the layout of the stuff on the wall, and I love it! She's the best.
I have not had a full-sized couch since moving to Oklahoma eight years ago! Our white love seat was big enough for two people, and having a couch that you can actually stretch out on is the most magical thing ever.
Right behind the wall where the couch is, is an office/dining room-type area that right now houses my desk. Below is a before/after shot of how this space looks. I still need to clean up this area and get shelving, but for now I'm happy that I'm at least moving in the right direction. Below is before. Note the chandelier and the blank wall.
Jordan put up a new light for the room, and I added a gallery wall. Sorry the lighting is terrible. As you can see, it's a little uneven, which was the intent because I can add other frames if I find them, and if not I think it looks good as is!
On to our bedroom. I bought this awesome two-sided laundry hamper from Wayfair, which we love. Jordan's work clothes get all dirty, and I have my running stuff, so we wanted a hamper where we could separate that stuff from our nicer clothes. Anything with "special instructions" (hang dry, whites, delicates, etc.) goes in the right. We just take out the entire bag, dump it in the washer, and done! No sorting necessary.
Remember my ongoing saga of the shelf above the toilet in the master bathroom? Well thanks to your suggestions, I think I'm finally done. See this post for the original empty wall and comparison with the new shelf. And now see below! I found the horizontal sign at "At Home" (formerly Garden Ridge), and I bought the clock at Target.
Finally, I bought a bench and pillows for our front porch. I sit out here as much as possible because outside = love. R loves sitting out here with me! My mom suggested I get an outdoor rug, so that's on my list to buy at some point.
So that's what we've done so far! Of course there are a lot of other projects on our list, including a new oven, new dishwasher, back patio furniture and putting up a new canopy, window curtains for the front room and kitchen, a screen door for the back. That's just for starters. I'm so thankful for our house and love the improvements we've been able to make this year!

More house posts: 
R's nursery
Original house tour
Mounted basket storage in the guest bathroom

Month Nine


Our little love has been out as long as she was in! This month's highlights include two top teeth, rolling, and table food. Let's talk about it.


The entire concept of feeding a child has been stressful. First they are newborns, and you don't know when or how much or really anything about feeding them. Then you get that down and you have to start real food. Purees, rice cereal, baby-led weaning. Ugh. Too many choices.

We went the homemade puree route, which worked really well for us from about five and a half months until around eight and a half months. She started off slowly, but soon she was sucking down puree cubes like they were going out of style, and we decided to move her on up to baby-led weaning. 

What is baby-led weaning, you ask? It's a fancy name for giving your baby small chunks of table food. I don't know why everyone is acting all hip about this baby-led weaning concept. This is what people have been doing for centuries. Don't get me started.
Anyway. We still give her purees when we are on the go (food pouches are great for travel!), but when we are at home she eats basically what we eat. She is pretty good at eating and gets a fair amount into her mouth and not on the floor yet! She hasn't seemed picky, although she definitely seemed to especially enjoy some BBQ chicken one night.

I am still breastfeeding 3x a day (morning, night, and at noon for lunch), and she takes a bottle 2x a day. About halfway through the month I started mixing formula in with her breastmilk bottles for daycare because I was not able to pump enough at work. I plan on writing a post more about that later, but long story short, it's going well!


The beginning of the month was great, the middle of the month was a complete disaster of a train wreck, and now at the end of the month she's doing much better. She cut two top teeth this month, and for a week she basically woke up every other hour all night long crying and wanted to be rocked back to sleep. 

Once the teeth popped through, she was still waking up throughout the night to be held even though nothing was wrong with her. She would stop crying immediately when we picked her up. So one night we decided to just let her cry it out and learn to sooth herself back to sleep. It was a long night for all three of us, but she has slept through the night every night since then! (Which has been about a week at the writing of this post, so we'll see if this trend continues.)
She takes awful naps at daycare (two naps each about half an hour), which to be honest bothers me but I don't know what to do about it. Advice, anyone? On the weekends, however, she she started taking naps that are 2-3 hours long! Yay! I put her in her sleep sack, lay her in the crib, and she passes out. Poor thing probably needs to catch up on all the naps she missed out on during the week.


No crawling yet, but she can somehow get where she wants to go with a combination of a roll/spin move that is pretty impressive to watch (see video at the end of this post!). They tell me that at daycare she just rolls all over, all day long, and is such a good girl! She can go from sitting to lying down and does great on her stomach for long periods of time. But when she wants to sit up again, she just hollers until we come help.

She absolutely loves being outside, and I try to take her on a walk or a run after work every other day or so, if not every day.
She babbles dada all the time and sometimes baba. I keep working on mama, but so far nothing yet. We are trying to teach her some basic baby sign language for more, all done, eat, and milk. She just stares at us right now, but I think if we keep at it, she will catch on. Overall, she is just such a joy and we love her so much!

Her basic schedule looks like this: 
5:30 wake up/nurse
7:15 drop off at daycare
9:00 4 oz puree at daycare
9:30 bottle (6 oz)
Nap (although sometimes she straight up skips this one)
12:30 nurse (visit on my lunch hour)
Nap (half hour to an hour long)
3:00 2-4 oz puree at daycare
3:30 bottle (5-6 oz)
4:30 pick up at daycare
(Sometimes she crashes and takes a short nap)
6:00 dinner (table food)
7:00 nurse
7:30 bed
Lately I have gotten into making videos using iMovie on my Mac. It's so fun! I put together this one of R's first nine months. I'm sure not all of you are interested in sitting through nearly five minutes of videos of my baby, but if you do, you will be rewarded at the end by a funny parenting fail. Just a teaser! Enjoy!