Thursday, March 28, 2013

Liam's Monster's Inc Mini Baby Shower

     When I was planning our Disney Chic wedding, I wanted to find out more information about Disneyland weddings and what they had to offer. I stumbled across this online community of Disney brides and connected with a group of past, present, and future Disneyland brides. We all formed a close bond and helped each other plan bachelorette parties, weddings, and so forth. They even attended our wedding and we had the honor of attending some of theirs. I am so glad I met these wonderful ladies and every time we visit Disneyland, we always have to say "hello". They are seriously the sweetest ladies you'll ever meet!

      The moment I announced to my Disney bride friends that Calvin and I were expecting, my friend Wendy and her mother wanted to throw us a baby shower! How sweet of them! Since most of the ladies live in Southern California, we thought it would be better to have a small shower there. I loved the idea. I get to see my favorite ladies, a baby shower for Liam, and be close to Disney? Done deal! 

     First we needed to decide on a theme. It obviously had to be a Disney theme! I decided I'd love to have a Monster's Inc themed baby shower. It's my favorite Disney/Pixar movie and I have been obsessed with Boo ever since the movie came out. I may have one too many Boo plushies ;). I also fell in love with the color scheme of Sulley blue and purple. Plus, Liam is going to be our little monster I'm sure. An adorable little monster to be exact!

     Once I let Wendy know the theme I had chosen, she worked so hard with the process! Liam's Scream Team started with Wendy and her mother, then grew to include her hubby Jeff and my fellow DCA bride friend, Jenn. Words cannot describe how beautiful and amazing this shower was. As usual, pictures are worth a thousand words and do the best story telling. 

* All images were taken by D. Park Photography. Our wonderful photographers who shot our Disney Chic Engagement Shoot and Disney Chic Wedding*

Baby Shower Location: Naples Ristorante in Downtown Disney  

Guest signed a Monster's Inc Big Golden Book for Liam
Guest could take pictures in the photo booth
Jenn had made each and every one of these adorable photo booth props

The backdrop for the photo booth
How awesome is this Mike Wazowski closet door

Boo's closet door! Wendy and her mother made each one! How creative

Sulley's closet door and Jeff made the little "It's a Boy" sign. They even cut Boo's pigtails off so she would look more like a boy :)

Delicious cupcakes!
Boo Cupcakes

Sulley Cupcakes
Jenn made Sulley and Mike Wazowski DIY monsters for the guest. LOVE the purple heart for Liam
Cotton candy favors with the tags made by Jeff!

Guests were asked to make little Disney quilt squares that Wendy's mother will put together to make a quilt for Liam
Our guests working on their quilt squares. I can't wait to see the finished product!
Margie, Jeff, Wendy, with the Parents-to-be

Peter and Jenn with the Parents-to-be
Wonderfully, gorgeous Disney ladies <3
Our amazing guests who came and showered us with lots of love

The excited and anxious Parents-to-be

We can't wait to meet you, Liam!
     As you can see, Calvin and I are extrememly blessed to have such wonderful friends and family who were willing to do all of this for us. It really put things into perspective. Even though life doesn't always go the way you want it and sometimes people will hurt you, it doesn't mean its the end of the world. Don't dwell on the negativity and focus on all the positivity in your life. Thank you all for showing us that good things can happen to good people! 

    I also want to give a few special "thank you's":

Wendy, Jeff, and Margie: Wendy, thank you so much for taking on the responsibility of planning an amazing baby shower for us. I know party planning can be stressful and time consuming. Please know that every thing that you had done and every single detail did not go unnoticed. We were amazed at everything! Thank you Jeff and Margie for all your help in creating every magical detail. We loved every bit of it. Family and friends from home who have seen the pictures of the shower cannot stop raving about how wonderfully the shower was done. I know I've said it a million times, but it doesn't hurt to say it once more. THANK YOU and WE LOVE YOU!

Peter and Jennifer, also known to many as the famous Disney couple PB&J: Thank you so much Jenn and Peter for helping Wendy with all the party planning and the creative crafts you had made. We loved the photo booth props and the adorable DIY monsters. Oh my goodness, those monsters! They're so freaking cute! Thank you for also setting up the decor and helping to clean up afterwards. Thank you so much and we love you guys!

Hope and Mike: First off, you're outfits were to die for! I love the Disneybounding! We wanted to thank you for coming out early to help set up and staying later to help clean up! We really appreciated all the help. :) Miss you guys! Sending big hugs and love!

Sue and Jacquelyn: Oh Sue, our Fairy Godmother! Thank you and your adorable daughter for coming early to help set up and staying later to help clean up. The cart you brought was super helpful in transporting all the goodies! We miss you guys already! Big hugs and love!

D. Park Photography: Thank you guys so much for coming out to our baby shower and for taking such beautiful shots! We love every single image and the memories it brings looking through them. Amazing job as usual!! Love you guys!

And to all our guests: Thank you all for coming and sharing in such a joyous occasion with us. We love each and every one of you. We also are very appreciative for all the goodies Liam will get to enjoy! Liam can't wait to meet each of you and I can't wait to show him how much he was loved even before he was born.

Wednesday, March 27, 2013

How does it feel

I am currently 24 weeks and 3 days. Pregnancy is NOT easy and no one ever said it was. Even though it has been somewhat of a difficult journey, I wouldn't trade it for anything else in the world.

First Trimester

        I found out I was pregnant around 5 weeks. At that point, besides the initial early pregnancy
symptoms, I was feeling fine. Then 6 weeks came around and BAM! Why hello there morning sickness. I've heard all about you. Not only did I start having morning sickness, but I had a sinus infection. I seriously was not feeling well at all. I was sick and coughing, could barely keep any food down, and on top of that, I was so nervous this was all affecting my baby. When I went to the doctor's for my sinus infection, she noticed that I had tachycardia, which is when your heart rate is elevated. We discovered it was just because I'm a huge worry wart and was fearing for my unborn child. My doctor did her best to try and comfort me and even suggested I go watch a comedy movie!

      Morning sickness is NOT only in the morning. We hear it all the time from pregnant woman that whoever came up with the term "morning" sickness, had no idea what he or she was talking about. I had "6 p.m. on the dot" sickness. Whenever I got the initial feeling of nausea, I would look at the clock and sure enough it was 5:30 p.m. That's when I knew it was coming. When 6 p.m. rolled around, I was down for the count. I could not do anything but lay down.

Second Trimester

     The second trimester is seriously so much fun.Once I hit the second trimester, around 14 weeks, the morning sickness literally disappeared. I was extremely happy. I finally am able to fully enjoy my pregnancy. The constant worry of miscarrying is done and over with. Calvin and I were able to tell more family and friends of our little miracle. My energy was back and I was practically feeling back to normal. Life is good!

      Now at 24 weeks, my belly has officially popped! It was weird because in pictures, starting around 19 weeks, my baby bump was slightly visible. 

19 weeks and 6 days
But when I would see my friends and family in person, they wondered where my bump had disappeared too. I guess the camera really does add 10 lbs! I am now getting feedback that I am finally looking pregnant. At work yesterday, my coworkers were all shocked and saying how my bump had seriously come out of nowhere!
23 weeks and 5 days
    How does looking and feeling more pregnant affect my self esteem you ask? It's a constant struggle. Pregnancy already makes me overly emotional. With the new changes happening to my body, I am extremely happy to be growing my little Liam in my tummy. On the other hand, lets all be honest ladies, its a huge adjustment. My doctor has already warned me to slow down my weight gain at my last appointment. She wanted me to aim to gain .5/lb a week. Since my last appointment when I was 21 weeks, Ive gained a total of 10 lbs. After spending this past weekend in Disneyland and not eating my best, I feel and look like I have gained 5 lbs! 
I have noticed the roundness in my face getting worse each day and the thicker arms!

       Of course I have a wonderful husband who tells me I'm beautiful every day and that he doesn't notice me getting bigger besides my bump. I also have wonderful friends who assure me I still look gorgeous. Oh how I love them! But when looking at pictures, I can't help but feel like a bloated whale. 

     Other than the little struggle with my self esteem right now, life could not be better. I feel Liam kicking and moving more and more each day. Although it keeps me from sleeping, I love the feeling knowing that he is doing well and is active. This past weekend, Calvin and I were thrown a baby shower by our sweet friends in Downtown Disney! We felt so much love!

Stay tuned for the next post where you can read all about our Monster's Inc Themed Baby Shower!

Tuesday, March 12, 2013

It's a...

      We waited 20 long weeks to find out whether we were going to have a baby Mickey or a baby Minnie. It seemed liked the day took forever to come. We always knew we wanted to find out the sex because we wanted time to prepare not only physically, but mentally as well.

What did Calvin want? 

      He wanted a little girl. Weird right? Most men are anxious to have a little mini me that they can teach sports too and not have to worry about when he becomes a teenager. Not my hubby! He wanted a baby girl and when I asked him why, his response was "I want her to be daddy's little princess". Alright, all together now " awe".

What did I want?

     I've had my plan set up from the beginning. I've always wanted a boy first, so that if anything were to happen to Calvin or I, he would be the protector. Now once I finally got pregnant and really started looking at the baby merchandise, I was wanting a little girl. There is just way too many cute outfits to dress a little girl up in and a lot of cute toys. My mother's instinct and the vibe that I got while being pregnant, was it would be a little boy. I just had this gut  feeling that our little baby baluga was going to be a Mickey!

What did family and friends think?

    All of my family members predicted a girl, especially my mother. She seemed very sure of herself! One of my brothers had said that he wanted a girl so that we could have " a little princess". He is a huge Disney fan like me and works at the Disney Store so he is always seeing the latest and greatest toys for little girls. Calvin's mom and sister were sure it was going to be a baby boy.

Old Wives Tale Predictions

    Of course we had to try the old wives tales to keep us occupied as we waited for our 20 week scan. Here is what we got from them:

  • Craving sweets instead of salty
    • I have never really been a fan of sweets and would rather have another helping to dinner than dessert. Now that I'm pregnant, forget dinner. Bring on the dessert!
    • I hated chocolate pre-pregancy. Now I'll take a chocolate cake, chocolate ice cream, hot fudge, etc.
  • Baby girl is stealing my beauty!
    • I've always had a little bit of acne hear and there. Once I got pregnant, zits started popping out everywhere.
    • During the first trimester, my hair on my head was falling out pretty bad. But it was growing in places I've never had it grow before.
  • Wedding Ring test 
    • This is when you take your wedding rings and put it on a string or necklace. Then you hold the string over your baby bump. If the rings start moving in a circular motion, it's a girl. If the rings start moving back and forth, it's a boy. 
    • We tried it directly on my bump and it swayed back and forth, meaning it was a boy. I wasn't convinced and read online that I should try and put it over my hand first then move it over to the bump. The results shocked me. I put it over my hand and it moved in a circular motion since I'm a girl. I then moved it to my bump and it swayed back and forth! I still wasn't convinced. I asked Calvin to come in the room and this time I went from his hand, which swayed back and forth because he's a boy, to my hand, which went in a circular motion, to the baby bump, which swayed back and forth. Crazy isn't it?!
  • Chinese gender predictor calendar
    • Predicted Boy!
     I know at this point you're all probably asking "well what are you going to have?"

     We are going to be proud parents to our baby.......


     Calvin and I are having a little Mickey that we have named, Liam Bradford Tan. We are both very excited! Ultimately we just want a healthy, happy child. So far, he is developing well and everything looks good! We are very blessed and are seriously living on cloud nine!

Monday, March 11, 2013

Our Family Is Growing By Two Feet

Yes, you heard it! Our family of five is becoming a family of six! 

     Our little bundle of joy was the main reason why I decided to start this blog. I figured it would be a nice place for me to record our journey in life together as family. 

     Growing up, there was one thing I knew for sure in life. I wanted to be a mother. You know how people will ask you, "What do you want to me when you grow up"? Well, I would always say a teacher. Teaching was the next best thing on my list. I love children and what better career choice than helping children learn and grow? I was always afraid to say I wanted to be a mom because that wasn't what people wanted to hear. They wanted to hear a career path. Even when I would tell relatives that I wanted to be a teacher, it still wasn't good enough. The most common thing said, " teaching doesn't make much money". I understand that, but that's not why I wanted to get into teaching. I wanted to do it for the enjoyment of teaching children. But that's a whole different story. 

     Anyways, I couldn't wait to have children of my own. When Calvin and I were dating, he was aware of my love for children. The longer we dated, the more we talked about it. Because we frequently visit Disneyland, towards our 5th and 6th year of dating, we started talking about how awesome it would be when we can bring our kids and to see Disneyland through their eyes.We did agree that we wanted to graduate from college, get good jobs, get married, and then have children. Over our 6 years of dating, we had accomplished step 1, 2, and 3. Next on our list was to have the children we always wanted. 

     Once we got married, children was on the top of my list of things to talk about. Calvin wanted to wait until at least a year of marriage and then we would start trying. Can you guess what I wanted? Yup! I wanted one NOW. So we compromised and we started the "Not trying, not preventing" method.

     During the first week of November 2012, Calvin and I traveled to Miami, Florida for his business trip. It was our first time there and was supposed to be a fun filled trip. Yeah, that didn't happen. I was having MAJOR mood swings on our last night. There was a mix up at our hotel and it just set me off. I was feeling so stressed out and just wanted to be alone. Now when I think back on it, I feel bad because I was taking it out on my husband and we were suppose to have gone out to a nice dinner for our last night there. I was just not having it. I locked myself in the bedroom crying, while Calvin was in the living room. I also noticed my sense of smell was stronger. We did not book the room, Calvin's work did, so I had no idea it was a "smoking" room. While crying my eyes out in the bedroom, I could have sworn I smelled cigarette smoke. When I asked Calvin about the smell, he said he couldn't smell anything. Sure enough, we were in a "smoking" room, which irritated me even more thanks to my crazy emotions.  I finally calmed down and we ended up ordering delivery and eating in our room. That night and the next morning was horrible. I woke up in the middle of the night sweating my butt off! I rarely sweat and usually am always cold. Plus, the A/C was on full blast. I thought that was so odd, but went back to sleep. Then early morning around 4 am, I had the worst stomach ache. I was suppose to fly out at 8 am, Cal had a later flight because his work booked his flight, but I was nervous that I wouldn't make it due to being in so much pain. So we changed my flight to the only available around 12 pm. My stomach ache finally subsided, but I kept dry heaving. That's when I said to Calvin, I think I'm pregnant! I didn't want to get my hopes high because there has been many times where I thought I was pregnant, but it was false alarms. 

     This time felt different. I was two days late, my sense of smell was stronger, I had intensely dramatic mood swings I couldn't control, the sweating, and now the dry heaving. When Calvin informed his work that he needed to be with me to make sure I was okay before i left and explained my symptoms, she even asked if I was pregnant! Because we were on different flights back home, we agreed that once Calvin lands, he needs to pick up a pregnancy test before coming home. 

     So around 2 A.M. on Saturday, November 10, 2012, I took the pregnancy test. I was super nervous and covered the results with the test box as we waited. I wanted to record our reaction and to stop myself from looking too early. Well, my dear husband doesn't always listen to me. I told him NOT to look at it because I wanted to record our reactions together. The first thing he does is go into the bathroom and flicks off the test box revealing the results. Of course my eyes dart over before I'm able to set up my iPhone to recording mode and see what I've always been wanting to see. The blue PLUS SIGN. I quickly picked it up before Calvin saw it and had the BIGGEST smile on my face, but I was still upset at Calvin for removing the box so I was yelling at him. What a way to start off huh? Oh the joys of being a married couple. Anyways, Calvin couldn't tell if it was positive or not because I was smiling, but also yelling at him. 

I then showed him this beautiful test!!
Two to make sure! Look at those solid blue lines :)

     I can't speak for Calvin, but I had a million emotions running through my head. I was extremely happy to finally be pregnant and getting to be a mother like I always wanted. But then the fears start rolling in like finances, parenting, labor and delivery, etc! But after calming down and telling myself to take everything one step at a time, I was able to enjoy the moment. 

The excited Parents-to-be
Please excuse how tired we look. We both had long flights to deal with before taking the test!

     The first person I told was my bestest friend in the whole entire world, AJ. She was the first person I told when I got engaged, a bridesmaid at our wedding, and so it's only fitting she was the first person I would tell I was pregnant. I had already texted her earlier that day as I was waiting for my flight that I was feeling all these symptoms. She knew how badly I wanted children and she too wanted us to have children soon. So we both agreed once I get home to take the test, a phone call means "pregnant" and no phone call means "not pregnant". Once Calvin and I hugged and celebrated, I picked up my phone and called AJ. She picked up and said "helloo.....?" and I said " IM PREGNANT" and that's when the tears started rolling.

     Needless to say, it was difficult for us to go to bed after that. We were just too excited. 

     The next day we went over to my moms house and told her we were pregnant. She just woke up from a nap and I think was still out of it. So when I told her, it wasn't this big, dramatic reaction. Of course she was very happy for us and super excited. That evening we were supposed to have dinner for Calvin's mom's birthday. So we stopped and got a birthday card and concluded our birthday wishes with " Happy Birthday Grandma!". When we first gave her the card, she read through it and smiled giving me a hug. I don't think she quite got it, because she did a quick double take after she hugged me and looked me at with an even bigger smile and gave an even bigger hug. His dad was confused and asked what happened, so she handed him the card and he was so happy for us! It's their first grandchild which I'm sure makes them extra excited!

On December 11, 2012, we got to see our bundle of joy for the first time at 9 weeks :)
     As of today I'm 22 weeks and 1 day, which means we know the sex of the baby. What do you think we're having? Is it going to be a little Mickey or a little Minnie? Stay tuned!

Thursday, March 7, 2013

The Start to Our Happily Ever After

     On January 19, 2012, I married my best friend at our happiest place on earth. We loved our wedding and wish we could relive it every year! What's the best way to showcase your wedding? Pictures of course! 

 Ceremony Location: Parkview Terrace at Disney's Grand Californian Hotel
 Reception Venue: The Art of Animation Building in Disney's California Adventure 
 Hair and Makeup: Flawless Faces Inc. 
 Photography: D. Park Photography 

Our wedding bands and my engagement ring

             Right after we were pronounced husband and wife, we were showered with confetti by our guests!

After the ceremony, we were whisked away to DCA to take some romantic shots in the park.

 We had many guests who traveled to Anaheim to be there for our wedding so we thought we would give them a little treat and surprised them all with a ride on The Little Mermaid, Ariel's Undersea Adventure.

Our AMAZING reception venue!

Our Mickey and Minnie themed wedding cake. We custom made the bride and groom vinylmations.  The three Disney characters at the bottome tier represent our 3 furbabies. Our cats were named after Meeko and Nemo and our dog was named after Gus Gus. 

                       What Disney wedding wouldn't be complete without these two special guests!

                     Our wonderful family and friends who helped us celebrate such a joyous day! 

Calvin and Courtney's Disney Chic Wedding Trailer 
*Here's a link to our wedding trailer if you'd like to take a look!

That's our little sneak peek at our Disney Fairytale wedding! Our happily ever after just continues to get better. We have some big news coming up very soon!