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What his online profile SHOULD have said.

25. September 2014

It is no secret that Tim and I met online, but I haven't talked about it in a while, so I thought I'd go ahead and bring it up again, since it's now been over four years ago.

FOUR YEARS?! Wow. Let me just take a second to digest that.

How life has changed since those September days in 2010 when we were messaging back and forth... Truthfully, I love reading through our old messages. Sometimes Tim will send me a blurb of a conversation we had via Google Chat in the early days and it just cracks me up. Honestly, I wish I would have saved more of them, but I have a habit of deleting 'evidence', which I guess included all of our old e-mails, too. Whoops! But Tim was able to find our first message exchange from the online dating site we 'met' on (OKCupid) and it's pretty darn funny and I can't believe we ended up together at all. Also, evidently I didn't believe in capitalization in 2010. Whoops.

What we always tell people about how we met is that 

1) I messaged Tim first.

and

2) Our relationship is built on lies because I decided to message him under false pretenses (more on this in a bit).

Everyone attempts to look their best in online profiles, right?! Luckily, mine is long gone, but we found Tim's profile and (with his permission) I thought I'd just re-write it to what it should have said, if we're being honest. (My edits are in bold)

"I am a positive and semi-active person who was raised to enjoy the experiences in life. I have played hockey since age four and love staying active and attempting different sports, but actually I mainly prefer to sit on the couch and watch movies. I moved downtown in October and so far have played in Dodgeball, Kickball, Ping Pong, and Volleyball leagues, and all that will end this year, as I plan on spending my time working a ton and socializing a bit less.

I will go to any live event – sporting, concerts, comedy, etc if someone else plans it. I'm really not a great planner, if we're being honest. I can drink wine, whiskey, or beer (but when I do, I get pretty hungover the next day, so it's best if we don't make plans afterwards) and if I am going out I prefer a sports/dive bar over the club scene.

I am looking for someone with similar qualities - a positive, energetic, and social person who likes to get out and try new things. Someone active and fit who would enjoy a run or bike ride down the lake shore path. Someone educated who can have a conversation and knows the difference between your and you’re. Someone diverse enough to stay in, go to a wine tasting, beer garden, street party, casino, pretty much someone who can go with the flow."

See the sentence I underlined?! That sentence was why I emailed Tim and also why I now consider him to be a liar. I took the sentence: "Someone active and fit who would enjoy a run or bike ride down the lake shore path" to mean that Tim is active and fit and runs and rides his bike often on the lakefront path. In my first message to him I told him that I spend almost all of my time running on that path, which was very true, because I was marathon training! 

However, what Tim meant by this statement was: "I would love to date someone with a great body who will spend her morning outdoors running around so I can sleep in peace." 

Of course, if he would have stated that, I would never have messaged him, we wouldn't have met, drank martinis, gotten married, had a baby... you get the picture.

A year after we met, still going strong in 2011!

So do I think lying on online dating sites is a good idea? I mean, I guess!

But after reading through Tim's profile, I can't help but notice everything he left out. He didn't say that he enjoys ridiculous dancing, especially at weddings. He didn't mention that he's incredibly smart and obsessed with all things technological.  He didn't write that he's hilarious and kind and loyal. He didn't specify that he loves fiercely and couldn't wait to start a family. He didn't brag that he would do anything for a friend or family member or even a stranger, even though that's very true.

It's a good thing he had a good profile picture and mentioned working out, because I messaged him without even knowing his best characteristics, and here we are today, four years later.

It's funny how life works out.

And it all started with lies on his part and a super-lame online message (on my part).

So I guess I'd urge those online-daters out there to give people a chance, and don't be afraid to message that cute guy/gal first, you never know what can happen if you just say 'hello!'

I must confess, a chocolate company led me down this path of thinking about all the great things that can come from a simple 'hello'.

Lindt HELLO Chocolate

Thank you to Lindt for sponsoring today’s post and inspiring me to try Lindt HELLO!

It turns out, I'm not the only one who thinks saying 'hello' can lead to all sorts of greatness, the new Lindt HELLO chocolate collection is all about inspiring social connections and conversations, which I love. I really feel like the sponsoring gods have smiled upon me lately... I mean, first I got to try mac & cheese and now I get to try chocolate?! HECK YES. I tried the caramel brownie chocolate bar, and while it didn't really remind me of brownies, per se, it did taste like milk chocolate, caramel, gooey, hazelnut deliciousness, and I shall be going out to buy several more bars. I can't wait to try the cookies & cream bar.

Definitely check out the"It Started With Hello" web-series, co-produced by Ashley Tisdale, to see how a simple 'hello' can make a difference.

And if you're into free stuff/experiences (OBVIOUSLY), go check out the sweepstakes page, where you could win a shopping spree, a staycation, or even a spa day! 

I'm actually taking this whole 'say hello' advice into other areas of my life (other than dating/marriage, that is)... lately I've struggled with meeting moms, especially stay at home moms, and am trying to put myself out there more. I kind of wish I could just create an online friendship profile... but alas, I have to make more of an effort in person, I guess! My goal is to approach more people, say 'hello' and see where it goes. But then I also need to be 'brave' enough to set-up get togethers and that sort of thing, and it really just isn't in my comfort zone.

Wish me luck. 

 

Are you good at starting new friendships at your current stage in life?

 

Cheers!

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Visiting brand-new parents - it's more complicated than it sounds!

24. September 2014

I will be the first to admit that I was clueless about everything baby related before actually producing a child from my loins (or something like that... I think that's how it's said but you get the general idea).

I mean, like most things, I'm sure I heard a lot of advice on things baby-related, but I chose not to pay attention to it since it didn't directly pertain to me. This (of course) was a mistake because I'm sure I could have been a way better friend to those new-parents in my life. 

That being said, I think that everyone can use a little advice on how to act around new parents, or even how to act around others as a new parent, so here it goes.

How to visit a newborn

(And please keep in mind, rules are meant to be broken, so if you're a new parent, feel free to break these rules. However, if you're visiting a new parent, I advise you to stick to these unless you're told otherwise!)

1) Wait a few weeks. If you are not an immediate family member or a super-close friend, wait a few weeks before asking when you can drop by to see the new addition. However, I don't recommend waiting for the new parents to invite you over. I loved it when people were enthusiastic about meeting Clara, but our schedule was PACKED in the first month and we sometimes hosted multiple guests per day, which is just really, really tiring. My advice is mentioning that you can't wait to meet the little one, then wait a few weeks and ask if there's a date when the family is free to have you over.

2) Text. As soon as Clara was born, I turned my phone on silent and it's stayed that way. I only want to deal with phone-stuff when I decide I'm available, which is actually pretty often because breastfeeding is quite the process! Who knew that babies take so long to eat?! Anyway, phone calls are hard for me to answer still, but were especially difficult that first month when I was either holding Clara or attempting to put Clara down for a nap or playing with Clara or feeding Clara... I mean, I just didn't have a ton of time to sit and chat! However, I could quickly text back! So, when arranging plans, just text, even if you normally prefer phone calls. Don't be offended if you have to text more than once before you get a response... those first few weeks went by in a haze and I'm fairly certain I still owe some people a text back - whoops! Also, text when you arrive for your visit! The baby may be sleeping so the door bell is not generally a good idea.

3)  Visit during the day. We got a ton of sleep when Clara was a newborn, because all she did was sleep for the first month or so... actually it's still what she does a majority of the time, let's be honest. Anyway, even though I wasn't sleep deprived, we still slept at kind of odd hours. I really cherished our night times together as a small family when we could just watch a movie and gaze at our little one by ourselves. Occasionally I really enjoyed hosting dinner guests and after-dinner guests, but I would have been exhausted if it was an every night or even every other night type thing.

4) Bring something. Anything. I recommend bringing a little toy or outfit for the little one, but then also something for the mom and dad. We had a ton of people bring us food, which I loved. However, I think it would also be nice to ask if the new mom/dad needs anything from a store you're already running an errand at. If you're going to the grocery store or Target the day before visiting, send a text and ask them if you can pick something up for them. Sometimes it was a struggle to leave the house, and the new family may need a gallon of milk more than they need lasagna. Or you could bring them both! Exception: If you're coming over for lunch or dinner, BRING THE FOOD to share.

5) Wash your hands. It's fine if you aren't afraid of germs, but understand that new parents have a reason to be, it turns out that new babies are delicate! Just do everyone a favor and wash your hands as soon as you get into the new parents' house, or find the hand sanitizer and use that. It's awkward to need to ask guests to wash their hands, so it saves everyone the trouble if guests take the initiative! I've found that most guests know this etiquette, but if visitors came over and didn't immediately wash their hands and reached for Clara I just said something like, 'Oh of course you can hold Clara! Oh wait, would you mind using the hand sanitizer first?!' They wont' be offended, I promise.

6) Have an end time in mind. Go over with a game plan of when you should leave, and leave earlier if the parents are looking super tired or if the baby is fussy. This goes for the new parents, as well! Clearly communicate (as politely and directly as possible) when you need guests gone by. This can be super easy! Just say 'Oh, we've found that Little Baby goes to bed the easiest around 8pm and we like to give her a bath before then, so we'll probably have to end our game night around that time, just warning you!' If your guests are over-staying their welcome, it's kind of up to you to get them out of your house, but if you are the guests, try to be understanding and make an exit before the parents have to ask you to leave.

Even though there are definitely more things to keep in mind when visiting a new family as opposed to visiting the pre-baby couple, the most important 'rule' is to make an effort to visit the new family at some point. They will appreciate the love you have for their little one, I promise!

 

What am I missing from this list!?

 

Cheers!

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Thoughts and such.

22. September 2014

My goal is (for at least this week) to go back to blogging every single day, Monday-Friday. I haven't done this in a while, so we'll see how it goes! I'm already cutting it close to the 'deadline' tonight, so I thought I'd do an old-fashioned 'things that are on my mind' post.

 

Right now I'm thinking...

 

//  I'm watching Monday Night Football and the Bears are doing rather well (in the first half) - which of course fills me with fear because they have a way of screwing this sort of thing up.**

//  Speaking of football - Ohhhhh the NFL. I'm glad that players are finally being held accountable for their actions by the league as well as law enforcement, and I hope this trickles down and college players are also held more accountable for their actions. Athletes aren't above the law or the standards society has for all of its people - end of story.

//  Once upon a time I was able to wear my clothes more than once before washing them, but this is no longer the case since everything I put on is immediately covered in baby puke.

//  I'm pretty sure the doughnut I had this afternoon was both my breakfast and lunch, and this means that I probably need to ramp up my eating-nutritional game in a big way.

//  I ran 1.5 miles this morning, and my lack of exercise continues to be a sore point for me. I really wish I could do more, but I'm sore and horribly out of shape and I still have incision pain. It's really not very fun. Plus, I'm still not 'clear' to do ab exercises, but I will be in 2.5 more weeks.

//  I upgraded to iOS 8 and so far I've only noticed a few changes, and none of them were that awesome. Also, I had to upgrade all of my apps to be compatible, which is never fun.

//  Yesterday Tim and I went to a farmers market (in the Logan Square neighborhood) and the Taco Fest in the Lakeview neighborhood of Chicago. It was such a nice little family day for us! At the farmers market we bought fresh Honey Crisp apples, peaches, soup mixes, kale, tofu... and of course I had shrimp tacos at the taco fest and they were delicious. It was the perfect end-of-summer-beginning-of-fall Sunday.

//  I'm very, very glad that Tim is back with us this week. There's something oh-so comfortable about having my little family all in the same room. 

//  I wish all workout places (gyms, yoga studios, pilates studios, barre studios, swimming pools, etc) could be free so that I could belong to all of them and really have a great variety of workouts each week - well, once I'm back into the working out mode.

//  I bought my first few bottles of essential oils last week and I'm very intimidated by them. Do any of you use them / have any advice or tips?!

//  Looking at Clara's skin makes me never want to go into the sun again. As much as I love the slightly tan look, I think pure baby skin is gorgeous.

//  The Newsroom. We only have two episodes left in the second season and I don't want it to end, especially since I know the third season is going to be the last one! UGH.  

** The momentum of this game has already changed and the Bears are only leading by 4 at the beginning of the second half. SEE. I told you.

 

What's on YOUR mind right now?

 

Cheers!

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