Entries from January 31st, 2013

guns & ammo: my thoughts on women’s self defense


This post was originally blogged  on the Douglas County Mom’s page for the Roseburg News Review – check it out here!

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I am tired of  staying home alone and feeling afraid for my safety. I am a stay-at-home-mom, after all, so it seems silly to live my daily life jumping at every thump and bump that occurs throughout the day.

I’ve decided to purchase a handgun.

This is no rash decision. I took a women’s handgun class at the Roseburg Rod and Gun Club a few years back, which piqued my interest, but my husband was the one who planted the first seed in my head. John, who is an avid gun owner and believer in the Second Amendment, has been lovingly nagging me for years to have my own gun and to learn how to use it safely and properly for my protection. I used to laugh at him and say, “It’s your job to protect me. You’re the man, I’m the woman.”

Then I became a mom, and that seed my husband had planted finally came to fruition.

If I’m not protected, Liam is not protected, and that’s a really scary thought for me. I am this little boy’s line of defense against danger, especially during the day when it’s just the two of us. We live out in the country (30 minutes from Roseburg) and dialing 911 wouldn’t do much good in a home invasion.

What’s even scarier is that there have been several break-ins on our road in the last few months, and they’ve occurred during the day.

I’ve also realized that I need to be smarter about keeping my doors locked and not opening them whenever there’s a knock. The other evening I realized just how easy it I made it for a stranger to get into my home.

My husband, John, called me on his way home from work and told me he’d be home in twenty minutes. Great, I said, and hung up. About twenty minutes later I saw lights in the driveway and assumed they were his (it was completely dark at this point). Most of the time John uses the opener and goes through the garage door, but sometimes when his hands are full he comes to the front door and knocks. I thought it was one of those times.

There was a knock (our front door is made of etched glass, which is impossible to see out of). With Liam in one hand, I unlocked the door and flung it open expecting to see John. Instead there was a strange man staring back at me. Luckily he was just lost and looking for an address up the road. I shudder when I think of what could have happened, and I get mad at myself for putting my life and my son’s life in danger.

Enough is enough, I say. I’m not going to be the damsel in distress anymore – I can’t afford to be because the consequences are too great. So if you need me, I’ll be taking control of my life and making sure that I’m prepared to protect my family.

Pinkeye – not the latest fad


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I have been sick plenty of times in my life, however this is my first time being sick as a mom. It’s a littttttttttle different. Because now I can’t just gulp down some cold medicine and crawl under the covers and wake up when I feel better. Liam still needs to eat, be changed, be entertained, and be loved multiple times a day – which is awesome and I love doing it, but I just don’t feel like I can get a step up on this cold.

Plus, Liam is sick, too. So I’m constantly worried about him, even though I think he’s taking this sickness thing slightly better than I am.

Oh yeah, and did I mention we both got Pinkeye, too?

No, really. I have Pinkeye.

The kind where you wake up in the middle of the night and think you’re blind because you can’t open your eyes. I literally looked like I’d been in a fist fight Sunday morning. And of course it had to be the day I was showcasing my photography at a bridal show. I wore my fake glasses in hopes the reflection would hide my big, swollen, bright RED eye. Seriously, the usage of the word “pink” in the title is misleading. I should write a strongly worded letter to the Center for Disease Control and Prevention.

Liam’s eye was infinitely better than mine, though, which was good because no one should have to go through this, especially a little baby.

It’s like, I hear you universe, but I don’t really know what you’re telling me.

You want me to stay home from the gym for a week and lose what I’ve been working so hard to get back? Cool. Oh, and you want me to feel even less motivated than usual to fold the laundry, do the dishes and cook dinner? Super. But I’m not bitter.

Good news is Liam is wearing his camo today and that always puts a smile on my face. #tacticalbaby. AND I finally brought out my good camera for a photo session. It actually made me feel better.

It’s the little things at this point, I guess :)

If you need me, I’ll be sipping hot tea and eyeballing (with my big red eye) that pile of laundry in the corner.

Don’t mind us…



We’ll just be snuggled in bed all day trying to kick this cold.

As much as I hate seeing Liam sniffly {and hate being sick myself}, the baby snuggles and extra long naps the last few days have been nice and much needed.

On a more fun note, we tried feeding Liam his first taste of rice cereal last night. He was interested….for about 30 seconds.

“It’s just not the same, Mom.” (That’s what he told me)



P.S. Sorry for all the iPhone pictures this week. I have just had zero motivation to get the dSLR out. That and the weather has been dark and stormy – not good for mini indoor sessions with the babe, but very good for naps.

Happy Friday! Hope everyone is staying healthy.



keep it simple.


Taken with my iPhone

Sunday evening we took a walk together around John’s parent’s pond. It’s something we’ve done a hundred times together, especially in the last few weeks of my pregnancy – you know, to try to get things jumpstarted in that big belly of mine (It never worked, by the way. Still had to be induced). Anyway, there was something really beautiful about this particular walk. Maybe it was the partially iced over water and the almost-purple frost. Or it could have just been the familiarity of it all after a long, busy week.

Whatever it was, I keep going back to this moment in my head and remembering what it feels like. It feels like family, and it feels like love – in it’s most simple and peaceful form. Liam felt it, too (or so I like to think he did.) He nodded off halfway in, rocked to sleep by the comfort of our voices and John’s heavy footsteps.

If that isn’t perfection, I don’t know what is.

what’s in my diaper bag



1. Cake by Petunia Pickle Bottom diaper bag — I love this bag, and I get so many compliments on it. Plus you can use it as an overnight bag for yourself after the bebe is grown. Tons of other cute styles and colors.

2. Mortimer the Moose — AKA “Mr. Moose!” in our house. Liam loves this toy – their bond is pretty ridiculously cute (see photo below).

3. e.l.f. lip gloss — I like my lip gloss to be poppin’, and this one is for sure. Lasts forever, costs $1. How can you beat that? #targetdoesitagain

4. Things I Wish My Mother Had Told Me — A book that I’m actually reading (don’t fall over from shock). Plus it looks cute on my nightstand.  Covers everything from fashion, to manners, to cosmetic surgery. love it. live it. buy it.

5. Hannah Andersson — By far my favorite pajamas in Liam’s closet. High quality, soft and modern. #babysnuggles

6. Smart water — I don’t need to link this one for obvious reasons. But as part of my 2013 goals to drink more water, I’ve been carrying this around everywhere I go. It’s not so much that Smart Water tastes better, but let’s be honest, the branding is neat.

7. Aden + Anais Swaddle blankets — Perfect for everything – spit up, nap time, changing blanket. Also it’s my “go-to” for baby gifts. AND so so soft. Make sure to get the bamboo!

8. Aveda hand relief — I got this as a free gift from my salon over the holidays. Great for keeping my hands soft in this cold, dry weather we’re having.

you are beautiful


I got to work on a beauty project over the weekend with Grace Hurtienne of Hurtienne Photography and it was pretty inspiring. Not just photographically inspiring, but personally, as well. As women, we are our own worst critics –  too big, too small, not toned enough, not pretty enough…the list could go on. I’m sure the girls we photographed this weekend have all felt that nagging insecurity at some point. I know I have multiple times, especially since having a baby. But as I looked at each of them – got to know them, saw them smile and laugh – all I saw was absolute beauty. And it hit me. I need to stop being so hard on myself. And so do you.

So say it with me now, ladies.

I am beautiful. 

Now go out there and believe it — because it’s the truth.

And book a beauty session in celebration!

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snow in celebration


Yes, mother nature did in fact throw Liam a four-month birthday party today. And so we celebrated by going out in it for approximately three minutes before I decided it was too cold to be outside (Liam didn’t really seem to mind, but I prefer the fireplace).

Four-months-old seems so big. Too big. It’s going way too fast for my liking. As we spent time in bed this morning – talking, tickling, yawning – I made sure to really take it all in. I want to remember how tiny his fingers and toes are right now, how many rolls he has on his stalky little legs, how many giggles he can get out before he gets the hiccups (poor kid is never going to want to laugh). I can’t even imagine where he’ll be in another four months – crawling, eating, shenanigans.

If only there was a pause button…

xoxo little man.



{Taken in the early Anne & John days – when most of our pictures look like this}

So I’ve been pretty busy lately working on some projects for my photography. It seems like my camera is being put to good use – just not for this blog. I have some big things coming up this weekend for Anne Blodgett Photography. Stay tuned! I’m pretty excited about it — like, the stay up until 2am, can’t hold your eyes open anymore, wake up in a good mood, kind of excited.

Speaking of THAT kind of excited, when was the last time you felt that way? There have been a handful of times in my life that I can think of – high school graduation, the night before our wedding, and the night before Liam’s induction (though let’s be real, I wasn’t really sleeping that well anyway).

There was, however, one really long summer back in 2009 when I had those butterflies every night. Call it mine and John’s courtship, if you will (hey, chivalry is not dead). I could write a short story on the romance of Anne & John, but I’ll spare you. So short story, shorter…we had to spend three months apart in the very beginning of our relationship, and I’m not kidding you – we stayed up until the wee hours of the morning video chatting nearly every day. And for those of you who know me, I like and need my sleep. That’s how I knew it was love.

Ahhhh the honeymoon stage.

If you haven’t felt that excited feeling in a while, get out there and find something (or someone) to give it to you.  Find love, find a new hobby, or maybe just find the perfect new pair of shoes (like these!). Life’s too short to be stuck in a rut.


{Liam checking out our super secret photo shoot location for this weekend}

Of life and death


Timing is a strange and funny thing. Yesterday marked the one-year anniversary of my grandfather’s death.  It’s also the day we found out we were going to have Liam.  Some people would chalk that up to simple coincidence, but I like to think there’s a written order to things – they happen for a reason.

I wouldn’t call myself a religious person, but I do believe in a higher power who is out there right now sending us messages via life’s timing. For me, the anniversary of January 6th will always be a reminder that with death comes new life. It’s a circle of which we are all incapable of escaping.

Someday I will be that 90-year-old in bed, surrounded by family, and letting go of this world. And my children’s children will likely be replacing me with little ones of their own.

I know that’s sort of a morbid thought for a Monday. But in my head, dying is going to be a lot like the last scene in Titanic. Rose is reunited with her soul mate, Jack, in front of the clock as a happier, younger version of herself (wearing a fabulous dress). And they’re surrounded by their loved ones who went before them.  That photo up there of my grandpa loving life and the forest, as he did for the majority of his life – I imagine that’s what his “other side” looks like.

Love and family are too powerful of a thing to simply end when our bodies do.

Until then, though, I will be dishing out tons of love to my friends and family in this world. Especially the little one in my lap blowing bubbles and talking to me as I sip my morning coffee.

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Oh yeah, that resolution thingy…


I had to start Liam’s love for cards now so I have a rummy/cribbage/blackjack partner later in life {since my husband isn’t much for sitting down and playing for hours on end like me and my mom}

It seems like people either love or hate New Year’s resolutions, and I guess I don’t have a feeling one way or the other. I’ve half-heartedly made them in the past – run more, eat less, no ice cream – I never follow through. I have, however, successfully completed ONE resolution in my time. Last year on New Years Eve, John asked me what my goal was for 2012, and I answered {half} jokingly “To grow a baby.” Boom! Done.  I don’t think I will ever top that one – unless I said I wanted to grow two babies… { just kidding, John }

So instead of making some lofty goal that I will never keep, such as giving up ice cream {which lasted a sum total of 24 hours back in 2010}, I just have some little things that I want to do or be better at this year.

1. Plan meals for the week and get groceries accordingly.

2. Eating a better breakfast/lunch because what and how I eat effects Liam, too. Typically I would skip one or  both of these meals and replace them with unhealthy snack foods. So this morning I got up and made a two egg omelet, ate a bowl of Honey Bunches of Oats, and drank a glass of V8 mango smoothie. Ok, and I had coffee, but I never said I was giving that up :)

3. Continue to go to CrossFit three times a week and eventually make it four.

4. Be able to do pull-ups again (unassisted).

5. Finish Tough Mudder in June.

6. Drink more water.

7. Take more photos that aren’t work related – and this blog definitely helps with that already.

8. Continue to learn and grow as a photographer.

9. Frequent coffee stands less.

10. “The VW Diaries.”  Find a camper van {preferably a 1968 VW bus}, pack up the family, road trip to Utah, and blog about it.

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