13 September 2014

Our Epic Trip to Utah

August was a exciting month. Lorin, Miranda, and I took a trip to Utah to visit his family. Here are some fun pictures from our trip.

Lorin's sister Erika got married. She had a costume ball for the reception. So much fun!

After the wedding, we went to Lake Powell for a week. We had lots of fun and lots of sunburns.

With everyone at home together, we couldn't pass up taking some family pictures.

Thanks, Mom and Dad Baird for such a wonderful trip!

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30 August 2014

What I've Learned from Cutting Out Facebook

Last November, I wrote a blog post about how I told Lorin to change my Facebook password. Well, I just wanted to give you an update on how things are going with that.

First off, I am still going strong with this and overall,  I have found it to be an really positive change. Here are some of the observations I have made from cutting down on Facebook (the good and the bad).
  • I only feel a need to go on Facebook about once a week and sometimes once every other week-Before, I would waste so much time on Facebook throughout the day. I feel like I have more free time to do the things I really want to do. 
  • Whenever I do go on Facebook, I find that the world has not passed me by-Before making the goal to cut down on Facebook, I was worried I was going to miss out on important events in my friends' lives. I have found that I can still keep up with people by going on Facebook less and trying more to give personal phone calls or visits to see how they are doing. 
  • I sometimes fill my time going to other social media or time wasting Websites. This is something I have to watch out for.
  • I have strengthened relationships by hanging out in person more rather than interacting over Facebook-Since I'm not interacting with friends over Facebook on a regular basis, I find myself wanting to hang out with people in person more often. I now make a better effort to schedule girls nights or play dates so I can hang out with my friends. 
  • I've lost some friends because I don't interact with them on Facebook all the time-Well, I don't want to say lost, as in they are gone forever, but we just don't talk anymore. 
  • I don't compare myself to others as much as I did before-Although I still have issues with comparing myself to other women, it isn't as bad as it was before. There were so many times where I would go on Facebook and come away feeling bad because I wasn't as cool, funny, creative, spiritual, talented ect. as some of my other friends on Facebook. Through personal interaction, I find I have more in common with and can relate to the women I hang out with in person rather than trying to compete with the best sides of people that show up on Facebook. 
Like I said, this has been a really positive choice for me, and I am really happy with how things are going. Just thought I'd give you a little update. 
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06 June 2014

How We Manage to Sleep in Every Other Day

Lorin and I have been sleeping in every other day for the past month. I don't know why in the world we didn't do this before. I guess you just learn as you go along.

Miranda wakes up for the day anywhere from 6 am-7:30 am. I was usually the one to get up and hang out with her until Lorin woke up to get ready for work.

Well, about a month ago, Lorin just started getting up with Miranda in the morning every other day so I could sleep in. I didn't tell him to do this. It was just pure Lorin awesomeness.

Let me tell you, sleeping has been AMAZING! Before this, I couldn't even remember the last time that I just got up on my own rather than waking up to a squawking child. Lorin and I are both really enjoying this setup. We always have something to look forward to every other day.

I know this arrangement isn't something everyone can do because of schedules, but I highly recommend it! If you can't switch off every other day, maybe talk to your spouse about getting up with the child(ren) on the weekends.

Sleep is a wonderful, wonderful thing!

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31 May 2014

Junior High and Becoming a Parent aren't that Different

"I don't even know who I am anymore." I said this phrase SO many times within the first year of Miranda's life.

Before Miranda was born, I felt like I had myself figured out pretty well. I defined myself by my personality, education, faith, music, hobbies, family, ect. All these things worked together to make up Sarah Baird. Then I popped out a baby.

Things changed, and they changed a lot.

Life changed so much that I wasn't sure if I even knew who I was anymore. This wasn't so much of a terrible thing as it was confusing and at times frustrating. I felt like that awkward, braced-faced, thick eyebrowed junior higher again, trying to feel pretty, make friends, and have fun.

I just wasn't sure how my old self fit in with this new, mom self.

Well, Miranda is now two years old, and I finally feel like I'm getting somewhere with this rediscovering myself thing. I'm finding that I can still be who I was before and discover even more cool things about myself because I'm a mom.

Some of these things you might be able to relate to and others are specific to me, but here are some things that helped me get my groove back:

  1. Getting a jobI really enjoy working. For some people, this isn't their thing, but for me, I like interacting, helping, and working with other people. Work is something that challenges me and gives me good goals to work toward. 
  2. Questioning and reevaluating my beliefs (not just my faith, but political beliefs as well as other beliefs)Raising Miranda has made me really question the things I believe in because I want to teach her things that are right and don't want to lead her in a wrong direction. I also want to create a strong foundation for her to build upon as she grows and chooses what she believes. I want her to grow up to be a good person. I am definitely still on a journey with this one, so I don't feel like it is the right time to go into detail on the blog about this, but I feel like good things have come out of my discoveries.
  3. Making an effort to make and hang out with friendsI think this one was one of the biggest game changers for me. Lorin and I have one car, and he uses it to go to work every day. We both decided that I would not have the car during the day to save money. I would still get out once in a while to hang out with my girlfriends, but I would mostly be at home with Miranda. Well, after a year of doing this, staying at home got lonely and sometimes depressing. Lorin noticed that I was having a hard time, so we decided that something needed to change. Well, now I get the car a couple days a week and drop Lorin off at school. Miranda and I go on lots of play dates with other moms and their kids. Friends are so, so, so important as a mom. I'm not talking about interacting with friends over social media, but face-to-face interaction. It's great for Miranda too. She loves hanging out with her baby friends. I've found that spending a little extra money for some sanity is definitely worth the cost. 
  4. Cultivating new (and old) hobbiesWhen you have a baby, you will find that some of your hobbies do not mix so well with a baby around. For example, I love dancing. Before I had Miranda, I did ballet and Latin dance. I thought dance was a lost cause after having a baby, but two years later, I've come to find that I can still dance. I just modified things a bit. I like to turn on YouTube and do some ballet with Miranda in our living room for exercise. On family nights, Lorin, Miranda and I will turn on music and Latin dance it up. Yeah, dancing is not the same, but I've come to be OK with how things are right now. Maybe in the future I'll have the opportunity to take classes again, but for now, I'm content with the progress I've made. I have also found that if I change my approach to cultivating my hobbies, I can still play guitar, do yoga, garden, and sew. The biggest thing I've learned about hobbies is that I have to be willing to modify how I do things so Miranda is entertained. Things are not always ideal (like Miranda screaming and pounding on my guitar when I want to practice), but at least I can still do the things I love and have fun with Miranda at the same time. 
I feel like I'm figuring things out more and more as Miranda gets older. For you new moms out there who feel like you are in junior high again and trying to figure life out, know that getting the hang of things just takes time and a lot of patience. I think the best way to start getting your groove back is to reach out to others and make friends. Call someone up and plan to go out and do something together (with or without babies). If you feel like you don't have friends, take your baby to the park and meet people. Sometimes making that first step to get out of the house is hard, but when you do, you will be so glad you did. 

Question: Did you have to get your groove back after becoming a mom? How did you do it?

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16 February 2014

Mormon Missionaries Aren't Humans

I will never forget the first time I made a phone call as a missionary for the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. It involved a man screaming at me at the top of his lungs and telling me I was wasting my time out on a Mormon mission among other offensive things. Yeah...I cried after I hung up the phone. 

Afterward, I wondered why he felt it was OK to treat me like that. I could understand why he might disagree with what we were teaching as missionaries, but why did he feel like it was OK to treat me like trash? 

As you can imagine, experiences like this came often on my mission. Some people made fun of us, others opened their doors to list off the reasons why my mission companion and I were terrible people. I even had someone pull a knife on me once when I tried giving him a card with our church Website on it (which is a great story to tell now, but I about wet my pants when it happened). 

Some of these experiences made me laugh, others made me roll my eyes, some just made me cry.

Some days, I didn't feel like a real human being anymore. People talked to me like they could say whatever mean thing they wanted just because they disagreed with me or didn't understand what I believed.   

I don't want you to get the wrong idea about me sharing these negative aspects to a LDS mission. I loved serving as a missionary for that year and a half. I was able to meet and help so many amazing people. The wonderful people and memories from my mission  far outweigh the hard parts, and I have never regretted serving. However, although many people were kind, I was amazed at how many people treated us terribly over a difference in opinion.  

I think that sometimes we can get so caught up on the things we disagree with that we forget to show love, tolerance, and compassion for others no matter what our personal beliefs are.

There have been so many times in my life where I have been guilty of saying hurtful things to someone's face or behind their back just because I disagreed with them. Many times, I didn't even care to see things from their point of view. 

Serving an LDS mission has helped me be more willing to hear others out and try to see things from their point of view (However, I do avoid listening to telemarketer spiels). Although there are lots of topics where I disagree with others, I try and take an interest in what others believe because I would hope that they would give my beliefs and points of view a listening ear as well. 

09 January 2014

I'm Still Here!

My poor, neglected blog. I am always in the mood to write a great post, but life has been so fun and busy. We just got back from a three-week visit with Lorin's family in Utah for Christmas and had a great time. Now, it is back to real life. I thought I would share some pictures of the fun times we had over the holidays.

As you can tell, sledding was a big hit with Miranda:

We played lots of fun games:

Grandma gave Miranda her first haircut: 

Aunt Erika showed Miranda her horse:

Miranda got some sweet gold pants for Christmas from her aunt:

Mom and Dad Baird are playing air hockey here, but what you can't see is the awesome laser tag arena where we spent many an hour.

We celebrated the new year in giant bounce houses!

 Miranda had her nails painted for the first time:

Well, those are some holiday highlights for you. I hope all of you had a great Christmas too!

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15 November 2013

When God Leads You Down the Wrong Road

After about a year of teaching as adjunct faculty at BYU-Idaho, I started entertaining the thought of going to grad school. Since Lorin was already planning on furthering his degree, I knew my decision to join him would be a financial strain and would also affect the childhood of the bean growing inside my stomach at the time. Despite the different obstacles, I still wanted to go. I felt like grad school was something that I needed and wanted to do.

Everyone has their own way of making big life decisions. For me, I take things to God and ask him to guide me in the right direction.

After a lot of thought and prayer, I felt great about going to grad school. Not only did I want to go, but I felt God was leading me in this direction for a reason.

Well, one child, one miserable semester and $8,000 later, I found that grad school was most definitely NOT the right thing for me to do.

God had lead me down the wrong road.

I didn't understand. Why the heck would a loving God do that?

Maybe this can explain:

From going down the wrong road that semester, I was able to know for sure that I am on the right road now. I stay at home with Miranda and am able to work from home as well. This road works so much better for my family and I.

The thing is, if I would have skipped school and gone straight down the road I am on now, I would have always been wondering what life would have been like had I chosen differently. I wouldn't have appreciated what I have now as much.

So, I'm not mad a God for leading me down the wrong road. In fact, I'm glad He did.

Have you ever felt really good about a decision, but found out it was actually the wrong one? What is your experience? Did you find something else that worked better for you?
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