February 14, 2019

When I snap moments like these, I feel like the luckiest girl in the whole world.

Happy Valentines Day!

vision board 2019

January 17, 2019

Okay bear with me because I know this looks like a pinboard you would have found hanging in my dorm room as a freshman in college. One hundred percent. I get it. 

I kind of already talked about the book Girl, Wash Your Face in a previous post, but reading one of the chapters, I Am Going to Marry Matt Damon was like having a miniature epiphany. Not only because I was that 18 year old girl convinced I was going to marry Zac Efron or a Romney (Matt Damon was a little bit before my time), but also because the vision board she talked about completely made sense. It kind of reminds me of that Oprah quote, "You get out of life what you have the courage to ask for" - or in this case, you get out of life what you to choose to focus on. It's like a daily visual reminder of where you want to go, and what you want to do.

So here is my vision board. As you can see, I redacted my personal resolutions list, but I promise I am trying not to swear this year. Also, no Zac Efron either unfortunately. But each thing I did choose to pin represents something I want out of life, or will help me focus on what I need to do to get it. 

Alright. That's it. The end. Auf Wiedersehen. (yes, that's right. I'm going to live in Germany one day).

holidays 2018

December 26, 2018

We've officially entered the years where only the upper half
of our tree is decorated thanks to Charlie ;)

I don't know if there was any child more mesmerized by the zoo lights than Charlie. If it hadn't been 21 degrees the night we went, we would have tried to stay longer but I lost eight years off my life that night freezing to death.

These are the only pictures I have from Thanksgiving in Arizona
where it was 70 degrees (!!!) I'll take it every year please.

Charlie asleep on Christmas Eve. Is there anything sweeter?

The holidays this year were welcome with especially wide open arms as Max finished up his night shifts right before the break, and we finally got two weeks worth of time to spend together as a family of three. We spent our Thanksgiving down in Arizona with family, and our Christmas together at home. I couldn't have asked for anything more this season, besides maybe snow, a car that didn't break down Christmas Eve, and a little bit more sleep ;) But even then, this season was full of loved ones and memories and service and trying our best to remember why we celebrate it in the first place. 

I don't talk a lot about my testimony online, but as Oprah would say, one of the things I know for sure is that we have a Savior who lives. A Savior who was born in a manger, for you and for me, and for everyone who has ever lived. Through the highs and lows of life, most especially the lows, I have felt His love for me, which is greater than any possible gift I could ask for.

what i've been reading lately...

December 4, 2018

 “Know this one great truth: you are in control of your own life. You get one and only one chance to live, and life is passing you by. Stop beating yourself up, and dang it, stop letting others do it too. Stop accepting less than you deserve...You, and only you, are ultimately responsible for who you become and how happy you are.”

“Your life is supposed to be a journey from one unique place to another; it’s not supposed to be a merry-go-round that brings you back to the same spot over and over again.” 

“You are more than you have become.” 

-Girl Wash Your Face, Rachel Hollis (these quotes might sound repetitive in nature, but gosh dang it this book spoke to me)

I don't have a quote to share, but I just wanted to add my two cents. Crazy Rich Asians was entertaining enough that I read the second book in the series, China Rich Girlfriend. Unfortunately, I kind of lost interest after that (the only story line worth reading imo was Astrid and Charlie). I also have to say this is one of the RARE cases I liked the movie SO MUCH MORE than the book. That wedding scene though... I was crying.

-Crazy Rich Asians, Kevin Kwan

“Bella can't bring herself to talk about these things, though. Her grief is larger than words."

“Months later, in a different world, Nechuma will look back on this evening, the last Passover when they were nearly all together, and wish with every cell in her body that she could relive it. She will remember the familiar smell of the gefilte, the chink of silver on porcelain, the taste of parsley, briny and bitter on her tongue. She will long for the touch of Felicia's baby-soft skin, the weight of Jakob's hand on hers beneath the table, the wine-induced warmth in the pit of her belly that begged her to believe that everything might actually turn out all right in the end. She will remember how happy Halina had looked at the piano after their meal, how they had danced together, how they all spoke of missing Addy, assuring each other that he'd be home soon. She will replay it all, over and over again, every beautiful moment of it."

-We Were the Lucky Ones, Georgia Hunter

two years old.

November 24, 2018

Over the past few weeks leading up to Charlie's second birthday, I've thought a lot about what I saw someone post online a few years ago. To be honest, I can't remember who it was who wrote it, or where it had been posted or when. But what I do remember is that it was a mom, posting pictures of her children, captioned with the C.S. Lewis quote, "There are far, far better things ahead than any we leave behind." 

Her post went into further detail, saying something to the effect that she didn't know how the future could top the first few years of her children's life. When I had read that, though at the time I didn't have any children of my own, it just kind of stuck out to me. To have a period of time in your life be so special, you wonder how anything will ever be that good again? And though I guess I could slightly relate in other ways, or with other chapters of life I had been in, it was hard to fully understand what this mom was trying to say ... until I had a child of my own.

And here we are. The little love of my life turning two. And that's all I can think about. I can't imagine how anything could ever be better than what the first two years with Charlie have been, (though deep down I still have a feeling C.S. Lewis is right). Even then, I'd relive a thousand April 2008s, October 2010s, and January 2013s (HA for real these were some of the worst months of my life), JUST to have these two years with Charlie all over again. They've been everything to me.

So Happy Birthday Charlie Max Bingham! You’ve brought me more happiness than I deserve. I love you forever.

sunday thoughts.

November 18, 2018

My sister shared this with me, and I liked it so much I thought I'd repost it here:

all things fall

November 1, 2018

It's hard to believe how fast life goes by these days. Earlier this afternoon I was reading from a journal I kept in college, and I had agonized at 19 how my life was just flying by. Well, if it was true then, it most certainly is true now. I guess maybe that's why I always get sad about getting older. Not because I'm aging (well, partly) but mostly because I really want to soak in all the chapters of life; that's hard to do when in the blink of an eye you're already onto the next one.
Clearly, I'm nostalgic and sentimental to a fault.

Anyway, here are some pictures from the last two months. I've said it before, October is in my top three favorite months of the year. There is ALWAYS something to do, something to make festive, and best of all: it's the prologue to Thanksgiving and Christmas.

First off - Halloween. I was dying. Kids in costumes (mainly Charlie dressing up as Mickey Mouse) might be the death of me. As I'm sure you've heard any new-ish parent declare, holidays with children are a million times better. By the end of the night Charlie had three suckers in his mouth at a time. I'd say Halloween was a hit in his book.

Harry Potter Escape Room. This was so much more fun than I had anticipated. I always say if I could erase my memory of one thing, it would either be the HP books or the Friday Night Lights series, just so I could experience it all over again as if it were the first time.

We had a weekend in Park City with family this year, and I lovvvved going on afternoon walks with Charlie and my dad around town. Another highlight: one night, as everyone watched The Sixth Sense, Ken and I spent two hours watching all those fail videos you can find on Instagram until we literally almost passed out because we were laughing so hard. Once you go down that rabbit hole, it is hard to get out.
My mom is the queen of making everything cute. 
Here she is helping me get ready for a friends dinner.

Witches night out, trips to the pumpkin patch, etc etc etc. Needless to say, we tried to fit in as much as we could while the weather was still decent and the leaves still colorful. I hope all the falls in my life are as happy as this one has been.

the love song of all love songs.

October 29, 2018

I have always loved this song. 
Ever since I heard Celine Dion and Clive Griffin's version years ago,
I promised myself it would be my wedding song.

Welllll now Michael Buble has just released his cover and I'm dead.
Dead in this case might actually be an understatement.

And even though the music video below isn't a love song necessarily,
(unrequited love? love gone by? does that count?)
His other new song has been on repeat:

drives up the canyon

October 26, 2018

Fall in Utah is unreal. I remember as a freshman while I attended BYU Hawaii, my roommate and I would buy fall candles and treats during October to make it feel and even smell a little bit more like home. The next few years while living in Provo, we'd ride our bikes down the canyon trail or take fall picnics up near Aspen Grove. As a mom, I have tried to take Charlie on drives (at least as long as he's willing to chill in his car seat) up through Sundance, Snowbird, Millcreek, etc. Even just driving through the Avenues after church a few Sundays ago was beautiful with all the fall-colored leaves blowing through the sidewalks and streets.

Anyway, needless to say, Fall is a favorite in my book, which is why I have some pictures to post.

Let's not forget the mandatory Diet Coke from McDonalds that must accompany me on our drives.

I may have also perfected my Autumn vibes playlist this year, in case anyone is interested:

Superhero // Lauv (um, this music video made me CRY)
Yellow // Coldplay (that's always a given)
Fire & Rain // James Taylor
American Pie // Don McLean
So Long, So Long // Dashboard Confessional 
The Wind // Cat Stevens
Spirit in the Sky // Norman Greenbaum (not kidding, this song has to be played at my funeral. When we signed up for life insurance I told Max I had a funeral game plan and this was it)
Witchcraft // Frank Sinatra
Kiss Me // Ed Sheeran
Stormy Weather // Etta James
American Girl // Luke Sital-Singh

fried chicken friends for life

September 9, 2018

(You can read this story my mom shared in the Deseret News here
I love that they gave my dad photo cred haha)

A few weeks ago I logged onto an old email account and found this email my mom sent to me years ago when she still lived in New Zealand. I had sent her an online news story about a girl who only ate chicken nuggets for like, 17 years straight or something, and this is what she had to say:

Oh Kelsie Lou, that is frightening and it's a lesson for you to learn: it's time to eat like a grown-up. I will be VERY proud of you if you will eat something new each week. I don't want to be a grandmother to malnourished children with scurvy. They will be on the news as the orphans of the arrested woman who only fed her children turkey and cheese. You could get life for that...and if you're in prison you will automatically be excommunicated, your husband will most likely divorce you and you will be homeless when you get out as a ninety year old woman. You will also be penniless. You will end up living in Liberty Park and most likely you will be stabbed to death. So PLEASE, to save yourself these miseries, eat like a grown-up.

In a nutshell that email explains my mom perfectly. She is funny and fun. She isn't afraid to be goofy or silly and always likes to laugh. She is beautiful (inside and out) and nearly all the boys I ever dated mentioned that one or two, or seventeen thousand times. She's literally the world's best cook (I'm not kidding, anything she cooks turns to gold), and she cares about taking care of others. For her birthday she asks us to serve, instead of giving her any gifts. Oh, and she's the best grandma. My dad will have to retire ten years later because everything goes to Charlie these days.

Anyway, this is all just a really long way to say I love my Mother Dearest more than we both love Tim Riggins, fried chicken and white bread combined. She's the best. HAPPY BIRTHDAY!!

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