Saturday, August 27, 2011

Happy 2nd Birthday Kanoa Sunshine!

Dannika and I spent the night at Kim's house last night.
Kim's hubby, Sunny left for Afghanistan earlier in the morning, and I didn't want her to be alone the first night.
I know that the first few nights are always the loneliest and saddest after your husband deploys.
Kim's one of the strongest women I know, so I know she'll be fine, but sometimes...even the strongest just need a friend around.
We didn't do much, just hang out, watch tv, and facebook on our ipads (cause we're cool like that...don't hate!)
Dannika wanted to give her buddy Kanoa some moral support.
 Kim's also an amazing cook, so I used "moral support" as an excuse to go to her house so she would cook for me...haha.
Tonight she made us BBQ chicken pizza....yummy!

Yeah, I've been slacking on the photo all I have are my crappy Blackberry photos.
Nick's 2 uncles are flying in tonight all the way from ENGLAND!!!!!!!!
I am so excited I can hardly sleep!
It will be my first time meeting them, and ever since Nick and I have been married, all he has talked about is how much fun they are!!!!
Nick will be in the field till Tuesday, but it'll give me a good two days to become acquainted with the British!!!!!!!!
And not to brag or anything...
But this is how awesome my husband is...
All the way from the middle of nowhere on Camp Pendleton....
He never ceases to amaze me :-)
Ups and downs, lefts and rights...
After all we've been through...
I couldn't imagine life without him :-)

Tuesday, August 23, 2011

Silly Faces

Nick's in the field this week.
Pre deployment has OFFICIALLY begun.
It's "single mommy" time for me.
In the words of my good friend Becca..."Just brought out my single parent shoes!"
Nick's Uncles from ENGLAND are coming this weekend.

Work depresses me.
Work stresses me out.

FIGURATIVELY speaking...

I had a full loaded combat pack 3 years ago.
After I became a mom...that combat pack turned into a day pack...
and since I've checked into my new command...
that day pack has turned into a camelback...

And now..

I am dragging that camel back by it's hose.....

I am ready to "not" be a Marine anymore.

I just want to be a mom...

Wouldn't you if you got to see this face everyday?!?

When I tell her to make a "silly face"...this is the face I get.

Silly Faces

Nick's in the field this week.
Pre deployment has OFFICIALLY begun.
It's "single mommy" time for me.
In the words of my good friend Becca..."Just brought out my single parent shoes!"
Nick's Uncles from ENGLAND are coming this weekend.

Work depresses me.
Work stresses me out.

I had a full loaded combat pack 3 years ago.
After I became a mom...that combat pack turned into a day pack...
and since I've checked into my new command...
that day pack has turned into a camelback...

And now..

I am dragging that camel back by it's hose.....

I am ready to "not" be a Marine anymore.

I just want to be a mom...

Wouldn't you if you got to see this face everyday?!?

When I tell her to make a "silly face"...this is the face I get.

Saturday, August 20, 2011

The Potty

Nick and I have not officially started potty training yet.
You can read about our views on potty training here (just click under "Dr. Shannon's Recommendations - Potty Watching).
I have very strong opinions about potty training, but I feel every parent has their own way of doing things.
This is straight from our pediatrician whom we absolutely LOVE LOVE LOVE!
I wish he was my doctor.

The most we've done is take her to the bathroom with us everytime Nick or I go and just sit her on her potty with her diaper on and let her watch and learn.

Well today...

She went #2 in her potty!

all by herself.

She just told Nick, "poo poo"
So Nick took her diaper off...she sat on her potty and did her business.
No struggles.
No rewards.
She just simply went where she was supposed to.
Closed the lid...and used her potty as a stool to brush her teeth....

Did I mention, we did no formal potty training?
Oh and she just turned 2.

Wednesday, August 17, 2011

Bad Fashion and Cheap Wine

I always knew that the man who could put up with my craziness would be the one to marry.
So when I met Nick, I knew in an instant that this guy was the one for me.
Here's why (in no particular order):

1. When I suggested on a Wednesday (or maybe it was that Monday??) that we fly to Vegas THAT Friday night to get married and fly back Saturday so he could make it to work on time....he agreed.

2. After talking about and anticipating the Sex and the City movie for WEEKS, he agreed to take me...even though he fell asleep snoring during the middle of it (I blame the fact that he was up with recruits all evening and not cause the movie was boring)

3. In an effort to impress me on our first date, he bought 2 bottles of "good wine". As he presented me with the bottle, his exact words were "I know you're a wino, so I got us some wine"....guess what kind it was?? Lambrusco....might as well be Boone's Farm....but the thoughtfulness was so adorable...I drank it all :-)

4. He was always bringing home some spectacular art project that his recruits were forced volunteered to do for him. Like range flags and cover blocks that were elaborately painted with "Oorah Marine Corps" stuff all over it. I told him I was jealous, and the following week, he had forced asked his recruits to paint me a footlocker. It was the "recruiters' footlocker" complete with red blood stripe, Iwo Jima Scene, and my MOS's ordnance wings painted on it.

5. The year I won Rookie Recruiter of the year, I was going to be called up in front of my whole command to receive an award. He wanted me to look my best...and while I chose to take a 2 hour nap before the ball, he spent the ENTIRE 2 hours IP'ing my uniform for me and ironing it.

6. When I went into labor at my house and was screaming in agony on my bathroom floor...I asked him to please call an ambulance cause I couldn't get up. He told me to "quit being so dramatic" and forced me to get up and walk the painful 50 feet to my car. He taught me that I have a much higher pain tolerance than I thought with this experience....

7. His impeccable fashion sense. Like the Doc Martens that he had for like 8 years before I made him he got rid of them. Or the time he took my daughter to daycare in a hot pink dress with white polka dots on it and black leggings with silver horizontal stripes on it....with light pink mary janes....yeah.......

8. He is quite the handy man. When he was putting our daughter's nursery furniture together, he put the changing table together completely backwards and had the disassemble the entire thing and reassemble it. It only took 4 hours. (lol) No but in reality, he REALLY is handy. He did our entire kitchen backsplash himself, he tiled our backyard, he fixes cars, he hooks up electronics...he's a man alright....and he's allllll mine.

So the list could go on and on, but I thought I'd spare you the long reading. 
I guess the point of this is...
I love the guy I married...through our ups and downs, lefts and rights, good times and in bad times, sickness and in health...

Today is his special day, but I figured I'd just let y'all know exactly why he's so special :-)

Happy Birthday to the "hippest' dad on the block and to the sexiest 28 year old in this house (until I turn 28...of course) ;-)

Sunday, August 14, 2011

Just Another Sunday.

My favorite sound this weekend was Dannika calling "Daddyyyy! Daddyyy!" like EVERY 10 minutes. 
She is such a daddy's girl...and I KNOW most mothers say this about their daughters, but Miss Dannika takes it to a whole new extreme.
*ok so that was my totally random thought for today*
We spent ALL day Saturday at our friend, Kim's parent's house in Santa Ana for Sunny and Kanoa's Hawaiian themed joint Birthday bash!
It was so much fun, and I can't wait till Kim posts the pictures from it!
Spending all day out in the sun and in the water wore Dannika out! She was out by 7 (and we left at 6:45 in the evening), and didn't wake up till 9am this morning!!!!!!!!!

Sundays are normally our errands, groceries, and family day, and we did just that!
Nick washed my car for me today...what a sweetheart :-)

Dannika even helped! Actually, she just spent the day playing with the waterhose while daddy worked really hard.

While I was cooking dinner, Nick took Dannika outside to go for a spin in her canary yellow Chevy Camaro :-)
Check out those chrome rims....

She felt super cool...she has navigation in that thing :-)

Thursday, August 11, 2011

10 Day YOU Challenge-THE LAST DAY!

DAY 10!

One picture of myself.

I don't really like pictures of me in the last few years. I choose to be behind the camera taking pictures of my little girl...
but here we go...

Ok, so I know Miss Dannika Jane made this picture, but it's honestly my favorite picture of myself for many reasons.
1. Erin from Erin Dietrich Photography takes amazing pictures and always seems to make me look my best in photos every time she takes pictures of me.

2. I was having a really good hair day :-)

3. My smile in this picture says it all. It is as genuine as it gets, and it's not a forced "hey, say cheese so I can take your picture" smile! This was hands down THE most HAPPIEST day of my life. It was the day Nick came home from Afghanistan. I was left for 7 months to raise a 6 month old alone for the first time. I had no clue what I was doing nor had I ever done it alone. There were so many ups and downs, highs and lows, lefts and rights...and we made it! Dannika had just turned 1 when he got home.

Wednesday, August 10, 2011

10 Day YOU Challenge-Day 9

One more Day!
Oh wow...I can only pick TWO?!

{2TWO2} Hit Me Baby One More Time - Britney Spears. Why did I pick this song to make my two songs list??? Because I love all things Britney, and my love for her started with this song. Admit it, you're singing it in your head right now.

{1ONE1} Three Days - Pat Green. This song always reminds me of Texas. For one moment, I can close my eyes when this song is playing and forget that I live in California. I can see Texas bluebonnets, feel the Texas humidity and heat on my face, and taste delicious sweet tea and fried okra. That's the kind of effect this song has on me.

Tuesday, August 9, 2011

Rest In Peace, Grandpa...

Death has become a normal part of my life since I've been a Marine.
For 9 years, I've seen more Marines being buried before they even got a chance to live their lives because of war.

I found out this weekend that my grandfather passed away...
My mom's father.

I was relieved when I found out...
and here's why...
My grandfather was one of the most amazing men you'll ever meet.
He fought in the Korean War.
He spoke more languages fluently than I can even think of right now.
He was resilient.
He could do anything.
He loved his family more than anything.
He was one of the most kind and gentle human beings I have ever known. 
He was soft spoken, but you knew when he meant business.
He loved his wife, his children, and his grandkids with so much passion.

I have such fond memories of him from when I was a kid and would go visit him in South Korea.
He would go hiking (at the age of 70!) every morning to the top of a local mountain to pick fruit.
It would be ready for me to eat when I woke up.
He took care of his body better than most men half his age.
He loved life.
He walked with this extraordinary sense confidence and briskness...if a blind man were to ever walk with my grandfather, he would have easily been mistaken for a 20 year old...when in reality he was in his 70's.

Towards the end of his life, he found God.

This is why I was relieved when I found out he had passed away.
He found God.
I don't have to worry about him anymore.
My grandmother (his wife) passed away at the beginning of this year.
He died of a broken heart.
He died to go to heaven to be with the woman he spent his entire life with.
So that is why I am happy.

Death is never easy to deal with.
It's just become normal for me.
I don't rejoice when a 19 year old kid gives his life in war, because in my mind, he never got to really live life to the fullest.

But for my grandfather...
He lived through war, love, hard times, easy times...
He got to do it all...
Most importantly he found God.

So, I'm not grieving his death.
I'm rejoicing because I know him and my grandma are in heaven dancing the night away and looking down on us.

Rest in Peace Grandpa...

10 Day YOU Challenge-Day 8

3 Films.

::three::  The Titanic. yeah, yeah...everyone thinks it's cheesy now and they hate the movie, but at one point in my life, it ruled my life. It's a part of my childhood, and that's what makes a movie worth being on my 3 Films list.

::two:: The Notebook. What girl does not love The Notebook, and what girl can watch the entire movie without crying. My favorite love story chick flick :-) You best believe my hubby has watched it with me! It was a prerequisite to get married!

::one:: A Time to Kill with Matthew McConaughey, Sandra Bullock, Samuel L. Jackson (lots of big name stars. I can never get tired of this movie.

Monday, August 8, 2011

A Letter From the Chaplain

My Chaplain recently started sending out a weekly email with some inspiration and motivation.
At first when I saw his name pop up in my "inbox" for my government email, my first thought was..."ugh...more junk mail. more emails that have nothing to do with me taking up more space in my inbox."
Was I ever wrong! Last week, he sent this email, and I really liked it.
Blessings MAG 39,

Last week I forgot to mention what DUI stands for.  It means DAILY UNDER THE INFLUENCE.   

Over the last several months there has been an increase in the amount of Domestic Violence (DV) incidents.  And many questions have risen asking why is this happening and how can we stop them from happening. 

As I discussed last week we are always influenced by something.  Some of those influences are positive and some are negative.  But what influences someone to physically, emotionally, or sexually abuse their spouse?  Some of those influences might include selfishness, arrogance, anger, and resentment.  If these are negative influences in our lives that provoke people to DV, than how do we combat those negative influences so that we don't have more incidents?  The answer is in having positive influences.  We must choose to be positively influenced.

I just performed a wedding and I told the bride and groom that LOVE must influence their marriage.  And then I gave them examples of what LOVE is and what LOVE is not.  To some this may sound familiar.  It is taken from 1 Corinthians 13: the Bible's LOVE chapter.  Love is patient, love is kind and is not jealous; love does not brag and is not arrogant, does not act unbecomingly; it does not seek its own, is not provoked, does not take into account a wrong suffered, does not rejoice in unrighteousness, but rejoices with the truth;  bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things.  Love never fails.

Here's the KEY:  When we LOVE our spouses there are certain ways we are TO ACT and certain ways we are NOT TO ACT.  We are not to lord over our spouses.  We are not to hit or speak evil of them.  We do not wish evil to come upon them.  We are to be patient and kind to our spouses.  We are to bear with are spouses (even when they irritate us).  We are to believe and hope in our spouses (even when they say mean things to us).  We are to endure our spouses (even when they hurt us).  And most important we are to forgive them...every day.

Live by the positive influence of LOVE and teach these to our Marines, and I believe we will see our DV rates decrease.  That and come check out the MAG 39 Chaplain's Office Marriage Enrichment Seminar given the 1st Thursday of every month.  SEE ATTACHMENT.

~ An email from the Marines:


    " I would like to share with all that I'm under the influence of the word of GOD! Please know that my BAC (BELIEVING the ALMIGHTY CHRIST) is extremely high!!! Let the angels of the Lord arrest me for being drunk on the word of GOD."


So today, tonight, and tomorrow think about who's influence you are going to be under.  The choice is yours.  What are you going to be Under the Influence of?

And as always, if you have a thought for the "Chaplain's DUI Report" please don't hesitate to send me an email.

Thanks and Blessings!

Very Respectfully,
Chaplain Dennis Wheeler

10 Day YOU Challenge-Day 7

Here we go...Almost done!
FoUr BooKs

4. Escape by Carolyn Jessop. Story about the woman who escaped from the polygamist cult that was ran by Warren Jeffs. I couldn't put the book down!

3. A Stolen Life by Jaycee Lee Dugard. 18 years in captivity and kidnapped by sexual predators. Sad, heart wrenching book about triumph and resilience. I cried, got angry, was happy...all in one book

2. Chicka Chicka Boom Boom by Bill Martin and John Archambault. MY FAVORITE childhood book. I pick it up sometimes and read it aloud to myself....when Dannika's not even with me. It's so catchy!

1. The Bible. I don't read this enough, and I need to read it more. Actually, I may go pick it up right now and read it. It has all the answers you need about love, marriage, children, parenting, friendships, hatred, jealousy...just to name a few. Man, why haven't I been reading it as much as I should!? I just convinced myself.

Sunday, August 7, 2011

Catch Up on LIFE!

Hope y'all are enjoying reading my 10 day YOU Challenges!
It's been a lot of fun for me to do and it makes me think...
And for those of you who want to know a little more about "yours truly", it's a fun little challenge!
This weekend has been busy busy for the Romers. 
Dannika has been feeling a little under the weather this last week cause she's teething.
Did you know...
For some poor moms (and daddies) out there, it takes up to 5 MONTHS for two year molars to come in?!?

Someone just stab me in the eye with a fork now, please!

Her molars haven't even broken gum yet!
This has been my poor sick baby all week.

Saturday, she was feeling a LOT better so Nick and I decided to make a trip to the petting zoo.
There's a neat little petting zoo called Zoomars right by our house.
She had a blast :-)

 This is a billy goat that befriended Nick. Dannika was less than thrilled :-(

and lastly...

Nick and I went to a wedding 4th of July weekend for our friends V and G :-)
They finally got their professional photos in, so I wanted to share some of my faves!
I'll do some explaining under each pic
Meet Mrs. beautiful photog friend and mom to the most handsome little boy ever. I believe she had just a "few" glasses of champagne in this pic and I may or may not have had just a "couple" Dirty Shirleys.

This was our table at the reception...AKA...the Party table. And the beautiful bridesmaid in the yellow would be Dannika's Godmother :-)

Nick met G (the groom in the middle) at work. He was Nick's XO before he moved on to work at MCRD where Nick used to work! Him and his wife have become really good friends of ours since Nick checked into Tango Battery.

They don't make them any more handsome than this...especially the guy on the right...but I'm slightly biased since that's my man and all.

How often does the Battery Gunny get to "IT" his XO?! Classic pic.

Nick was telling a dirty joke and was taken by surprise when the photographer caught him...tsk tsk, honey!

The sword detail. Sleep well America...we got your back.

And lastly...I love this pic of Nick dancing with the bride. I swear the dance was rehearsed prior to the wedding. They just kinda went with it and was doing all kinds of crazy dance moves to include: the Sprinkler, the Lawnmower, the cabbage patch kid...just to name a few. Definitely a highlight of the night.

So I hope y'all enjoyed that picture overload. 
Hope everyone had a fab weekend.
Come back to visit me here!!

10 Day YOU Challenge-Day 6


^5^ Dr. Rick's Salad from the Sundried Tomato. O-M-G, it is a salad to die for. It's spinach leaves tossed in some sort of vinaigrette topped with walnuts, sauteed mushrooms, and prosciutto stuffed with goat cheese. My friend Kim introduced me to this salad when Nick was in Afghanistan...and fell in LOVE.

^4^ Freebird's World Burrito in College Station. Everyone in California talks about how much they love Chipotle, but there is absolutely NO comparison. When people tell me how good Chipotle is, I secretly think in my head "You've never been to Texas to have a real burrito".

^3^ the "Oh No! Roll" from Taka-O Sushi. It is their signature roll. I can't even tell you what it consists of, but the secret sauce it comes in is AMAZING. Nick and I go there JUST for that roll.
^2^ Zenko's Sushi's lobster roll. This is kind of a hole in the wall sushi joint in Mission Viejo. They have this lobster roll, and it's basically a California roll topped with lobster and some sort of cheese sauce (actually, I'm not sure if it's a cheese sauce, but it's freaking DELISH!).
^1^ My mom's Korean BBQ. Hands down, the best I've ever had. I'm not just saying this cause she's my mom either! I've had Korean BBQ in all kinds of places, people's houses, and even in South Korea, but my mom's is hands down the absolute beeeeeest!

Saturday, August 6, 2011

10 Day YOU Challenge-Day 5

Whoop Whoop...Halfway done!

sIx pLacEs
Seis) Cancun, Mexico. This was easily, hands down, my most favorite vacation I went on with my family as a child. I was extremely lucky to grow up in a family that got to do a TON of travelling, but I must say, Cancun is just one of those places that sticks out in my head.
Cinco) South Korea...I used to go almost every Summer growing up to visit my mom's side of the family. While I might have not appreciated it when I was younger, I definitely have fond memories of going there. I can't wait to take Dannika and Nick there one day!
Cuatro) Orange County, California....Although I've lived in San Diego and Oceanside longer than I have had here in my current location, I LOVE the OC. This place will always have a special place in my heart since it is where Nick and I purchased our first home. There's so much to do here and so many awesome restaurants to try too!
Tres) Punta Cana, Dominican Republic...Nick and I went on a "Post deploymentmoon" there. It was BEAUTFUL, EXCITING, AND FUN. It was our first official tropical vacation, and can't wait to go on many more in our future!
Dos) Las Vegas, Nevada....where my husband and I eloped. We told no one we were getting married, and it was just the two of us. I wouldn't have it any other way ;-) There was no drama, wedding planning, or stress.
Uno) College Station, Texas! Home of the Texas Aggies and the place that my heart <3 calls HOME. I love the small town feel of good ole' CSTX, but without the small town boredom.

Friday, August 5, 2011

10 Day YOU Challenge-Day 4


7* To be home with my daughter all day everyday and never miss a single moment of her childhood. I hate that I spend more time at work than I do with my sweet pea
6* Get out of the Marine Corps. It was fun until I became a mother. Now, I'm so over it, and it's just not fun anymore.
5* Move back to College Station, Texas and buy my dream house with a HUGE backyard. I love California, but it's not my idea of where I wanted to raise my family. I love the simplicity of Texas and people that are from there. It's home to me.
4* Finish college.
3* Nick to not deploy anymore. It's a want...doesn't mean it'll happen. It's a nice thought though.
2* To be able to run again like I used to. I don't think my knees are getting any better though.
1* To live happily ever after with no more war, deployments, sadness, separations, or bills. Perfect place? Non existent on earth, but it's nice to think about. I know heaven will be perfect.

Thursday, August 4, 2011

Let the Asian Parenting Commence!

It's finally HERE!
Dannika's birthday gift from my parents.

I love the sophistication it brings into our home. 

10 Day YOU Challenge-Day 3

Day 3...

(8) The's not as bad as it used to be, but I'm really scared of the dark (especially when I'm alone).
(7) Heights...deathly afraid of heights.
(6) Losing 1/2 an income when I get out of the Marine Corps. Life has been really good financially. Not sure how we're gonna make it work!
(5) Something happening to Dannika while she is in daycare, and I can't be there. I think would hate myself forever.
(4) Gaining weight. I've always had an obsession with my weight. There are times in my life when it was an unhealthy obsession. I'm ok now, but I still fear the scale.
(3) Something happening to Nick while deployed.
(2) Not going to heaven when I die. Yes this is an actual fear. I'm constantly asking myself if what I'm doing is enough (it never is) to make it through those pearly gates.
(1) God. I've always been a God-fearing Christian. As loving as He is, He controls my destiny, and that is frightening at times.

Wednesday, August 3, 2011

10 Day YOU Challenge - Day 2

Here we go with Day 2!

9 Loves:

[nine] Texas and just the south in general because everyone is nicer and prettier :-)
[eight] Decorating my house to make it a home. Every little touch and detail.
[seven] My awesome bunch of Marine Wives for always making me smile.
[six] Taking perfect photographs without even trying to with my amateur DSLR.
[five] Our military because without them we wouldn't be free!
[four] Weekends because it's time I get to spend with my little family.
[three] My little sweet pea, Dannika Jane because she gives my life meaning.
[two] My wonderful husband, Nick because he loves me unconditionally.
[one] Jesus is always my numero uno. He does all of the above AND THEN SOME!

Tuesday, August 2, 2011


Our poor Master Bedroom has been neglected (decor-wise)
I spend so much time decorating the living room, kitchen, dining room, and the baby's room.
I just feel like I don't ever invite people into our room so I choose to put it on the backburner.
We did, however (comma...pause for effect) paint our bedroom a few months ago with a beautiful shade of light gray with a dark gray accent wall.
We put up silverish curtains up on our GORGEOUS windows.
That's all we ever did.
Our room has this GORGEOUS (overuse of this word, but I like it) built in vanity in the master bedroom.
Since it's MINE, I chose to decorate that.
(See below)

It's always a mess

I got these adorable boxes from Michael's. I use them to store my straightening irons and make up.

Other than that, we don't have too much going on in the Master bedroom.
I finally figured out what to do with this wall decoration thing that I bought at an antique store a few months ago...
I painted the plates with chalkboard paint and hung it up in our room. I'll take pictures of the rest of the room once it's done.

Faith, Hope...and the greatest is Love...

Does anyone know where that came from???

If you said Alan Jackson's song "Where Were You When the World Stopped Turning"'re WRONG!

It is actually a bible verse.
1 Corinthians 13:13

"And now these three remain: faith, hope and love. But the greatest of these is love."

And here's my other project with chalkboard paint for our hallway....
I bought this hideous painting from the Salvation army for 12.50 because I LOVED the old rustic antiquey frame.
I painted straight over the glass with chalkboard paint.

I LOVE owning my dream townhouse in South Orange County.
Especially what we paid for it :-)
We bought it for half of what it sold for in 2005....HALF 
California housing prices are RIDICULOUS, and what we paid here for our small cozy townhouse, we could have purchased a 6 bedroom home in Texas on 2 acres of land....just to give you perspective.

It's in a GREAT location...running distance to the the OC....walking distance from historic San Juan and some AWESOME restaurants that any foodie would dream about.
Nick and I plan to keep it even after retirement from the Marine Corps so that we will always have a vacation home to come to in Sunny California even after we move back to God's Country...Texas :-)