Friday, June 28, 2013

10 Things I Learned in June

Today I'm linking up with Emily Freeman at Chatting at the Sky. For several months she's been doing a post at the end of each month entitled, Things I Learned in {Insert Month.} This month she's invited the rest of us to join in. 

Look out. This may just be the most life-changing post I've ever written. 


1. You know how you sometimes see celebrity men wearing their hair in a bun? It's usually sort of a half-up / half-down sort of do and the "up" part is in a tiny bun. It's weird, is what it is. Well, the "do" has a name. It's called...The "Mun." Don't believe me? Just look in People magazine. {Why yes, I did sit on the beach and devour quality reading material on vacation.}

2. And that brings me to my next "thing." I can go to the same place for vacation every year for 18 years and it doesn't get old. Eighteen summers ago, two newlyweds went to Hilton Head Island for their honeymoon. They fell in love with the place and told the wife's parents that they needed to go there as a family for vacation. The parents listened to their newlywed daughter and her husband and as it turned out, they also fell in love with the place. They loved it so much, they bought some time at a condo there. There were 7 of us then. Each summer we venture back and it feels like home. Only now? There are 15 more of us than there were way back then. And three condos instead of one. 

3. Forty feels happy. I've been 40 for a month now and even though it felt like a slightly unwelcome milestone when I was still 39, I've found I'm actually cool with forty. Except for when I say, "I'm 40." That's still super weird. {You can read about my 40th birthday and all its goodness here.}

4. Brennan Manning and I share the same Enneagram type. I read his memoir, All is Grace, while I was at the beach. The Enneagram is a personality test that I went through several years ago and it was huge for me. I go back to it time and time again. From the first Manning book I ever read, I loved him. I felt understood, a bit less like a misfit. His words resonated with me in a way that no author's ever had. Well, now I know why. We're both 4's. 

5. Good product really does make a difference when you have curly hair. Yes, my hair is naturally curly. These days I wear it straight at least half the time but when I don't, I'm loving Deva Curl. {My husband cracks up every time I say "Deva Curl."} Yes, the name sounds a little ridiculous but I don't care what it's called; the stuff is fabulous. You have to follow their directions for washing and styling your hair. My curls are looking a lot more like they did before babies {and the hair-altering hormones that accompany babies.} I bought the "Get Started Kit" of all the products from amazon or you can probably buy it at your local salon.

6. Kelle Hampton wrote a book. It's called Bloom: Finding Beauty in the Unexpected. Okay, so a lot of people already know this because apparently it's a NY Time best seller. But I just found out. I don't follow her blog regularly but I'll never forget reading her story for the first time on Donald Miller's blog. I may have gone through an entire box of Kleenex. Her raw and beautiful account of giving birth to a baby with Down Syndrome was one of my most moving stories I'd ever read. 

Little did I know, our own family would welcome two beautiful baby girls with Down Syndrome into our midst only months later. And though these sweet girls are my nieces and not my daughters, I feel like reading Kelle's story helped prepare my heart a bit. On my husband's side of the family, we welcomed Bree. 

On my side of the family, we welcomed Naomi, just 3 weeks after Bree came into the world. It was all pretty unbelievable. 

Like the Hamptons, my brother and his wife had no clue their baby had Down Syndrome until she was born. That was almost 2 years ago and I can't imagine our families without these beautiful girls. I read some excerpts from Bloom on-line and I'm thinking I'd love to read the whole thing. {Have any of you read it?}

7. Sandra Bullock is crazy fluent in German. {And yes, I'm aware that "crazy fluent" is not even remotely a technical or proper term.} I saw her on Kelly and Michael yesterday morning and she was speaking German like nobody's business. It was impressive. 

I don't see it as much as other people do but I am sometimes told by complete strangers that I look like Sandra Bullock. {Do you see it?}

{Today her hair was in a messy bun, not to be confused with "The Mun," and I thought, Yep, messy bun. That's me all right.} Also? I like German because my sister lived in Munich and speaks German and I had the most memorable time visiting her there nearly ten years ago. So basically, Sandra Bullock is an amalgamated doppelganger of my sister and me. {That sentence may have just tapped out my vocabulary for the day.}



8. A friend of mine from high school just won Mrs. Utah America. She was always effortlessly beautiful and incredibly sweet in high school. She still is. Congratulations Stefanie!

9. Chaco sandals are way comfy. I used all of my birthday money to buy a pair of black {aka "boring," according to my daughter} ZX2's. I love them, mostly because my back and knees don't hurt by supper-time. {About #3. Forty is not always happy; sometimes 40 is achey.}

10. Naming {or renaming} your blog may be harder than naming your child. Yes, I'm hoping to roll out some long-overdue changes in the coming months. And one of those changes may involve changing the name of my blog. I'll dish more about all of this later but let me just say, I have labored over a name. Labored. {I seriously didn't spend this long on any of my kids' names.} It's kept me up at night and invited a whole host of hilarious fake blog name ideas from friends. I welcome any and all suggestions, including the funny ones. Especially the funny ones.


So that's what I've learned in June. Told you it would be life-changing. What have you learned? You can tell me in the comments or if you have a blog and want to scrawl out one of these posts too, link up over at Emily's!


  1. I am laughing so hard right this minute!!!! Yes you do look like Sandra Bulluck- my word, you lucky lady, you.
    And the MUN, really? too much.
    And finally- Brennan Manning- he's one of my faves.
    thank you for making my day. =)

  2. Loved this, you are so funny but strangely educational at the same time!

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  4. Love your list. Your blog header makes me hungry! ;)
    I am so glad that Emily hosted us today so that I could stop by. Hope you have a great weekend!

  5. Hey there. I hopped over from Emily's link up and as I saw your picture I thought, "she looks familiar". Then I saw the picture of you and your husband and thought it even more. I then scrolled down to see a picture of you and your sister, and it clicked. I graduated from SWU and don't often forget a familiar face. Anyhow, I was just reminded of what a small world it is. I definitely need to check out the diva curl. My curly hair hasn't been the same since kids either.

  6. You totally look like Sandra Bullock! The mun is hilarious.

  7. Delightful.

    The "Mun" - is bothering me greatly.

    Love your Hilton Head family tradition, just beautiful.

    And those adorable girls...what gifts!


  8. I went to SWU with all your siblings! I bought Bloom when it came out but I'm the type that doesn't read books twice. I would be happy to give it to you to if you want to send me your mailing address.


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