Hey everyone! It's been a while since I sat down and talked about life with ya, and well, surprise! Meet the newest addition to our family, Arlo. Miss Arlo is the cutest, wrinkliest, most lovable Shar Pei pup ever -- and I'm not just being biased. It took a decent amount of begging, a pretty penny, and an eight hour road trip to bring her home. I knew the second I was sent her picture that she was what we were missing. Call me crazy, but somehow adding a puppy to our currently chaotic life, was exactly what we needed. She brings so much joy and lots of puppy kisses and who doesn't love puppy kisses? Lyla has been asking or rather, demanding that we provide her with sibling and while we are not quite ready to head down that route, we figured it would be a great time to introduce a furry friend. 

Luna was Arlo's original name given to her by the breeders, but that didn't work out for us since it happens to be my the name of my in-laws doggy. We had a few names picked out for the pup: Bleu, Peaches, Pumpkin, Hunny, Sauci, Arlo, and Mya. After talking it over a few days we just could not choose and the more we talked the more we thought about why we couldn't name her with any of the names we liked. Bleu, was too posh. Every Shar Pei is called Peaches. Absolutely could not name her Mya when it's our friends' daughter's name. Sauci sounded too much like Stassi, which was the name of Alan's motorcycle (Weird, I know ). Hunny would get confused if I were to call my hunnies, hunny. Do you see what I mean? So, to solve our problem, we let Lyla choose and she chose...Arlo, "like the dinosaur" -from The Good Dinosaur. Arlo was our first and most liked choice, our only issue with it was that it could cause confusion, being that Arlo is primarily a male name and our pup is a female. But hey, it's 2017 and who's going to tell a little girl what she can and can't name her doggy? So everyone, this is Arlo. 
She is the biggest sweetheart, more so than what we could have ever wished for. 
She's currently 10 weeks in these photos. Isn't she the most snuggly little thing you've ever laid eyes on? 

Restoring Balance

Our lives have been a bit out of the norm lately. Following Alan's accident we have been as far away from our daily routine as we could ever be. Who am I kidding? There is no way to sugarcoat our life, it's been chaotic. I've been feeling emotionally exhausted lately, with all we've been having to deal with in the military, one second they know what they're doing the next they don't and it's all at the expense of my husband's health.  Don't let anyone fool you, free things aren't always quality things --If you're a military family you'll understand what I mean. It's been a fight, but I think our assertive efforts have finally payed off. All of the stress has lead to late nights (usually spent reading handbooks, and discussing our next step) followed by early mornings appointment(s). It goes without saying our household has had quite the cranks living under its' roof. We aren't the perfect family, there are times we are at each other's throats, but we always find our way back to eating popcorn on the couch laughing at things like, Tom Sandoval crying on Vanderpump Rules-- is that insensitive? 

We are a family that functions on a routine, so once our routine went out the window, everything pretty much collapsed. My dish-less sink now has dishes stacked in it, Lyla is now waking up throughout the night (she never had a problem sleeping through the night before), Alan hasn't been able to take a shower since January, I haven't attended to my eyebrows in over two months--need I go on? Naturally, I have been trying to find a way to get us back to some sort of routine during this circus show. I started to make a mental list of things I knew we weren't getting: adequate sleep, consistent meals (home cooked, like we're used to), personal time, quality time, work-time, physical exercise. It wasn't until I checked my mailbox that something clicked. The most important thing my family has been missing is balance. A great start to restoring balance is to set goals, assess your personal needs, and make time. We sat down and discussed what each persons' personal needs were, and made family goals that will help us get back to a routine, for instance, putting Lyla down between 7-8 and getting ourselves in bed by 10.

Something I need is to set aside personal time for myself, even if it is 15 mins alone to shower, the door is shut and locked, so not even the cutest of munchkins can get in. During my 15-20 minutes of alone time, I'm focusing on myself. Lately, I have been failing to remove all of my makeup before bed, and my skin is reaping the consequences. For the most part I have normal skin, it doesn't need much attention other than cleansing, but for some reason when I am stressed or when I am about to start my period, my skin tends to change from normal to combination. 

A brand I love and trust, is Ole Henriksen, they happen to be the makers of one of my favorite Eye Gels --which I need after a long day. Lately though, I have been loving products from their collection, Balance. When being massaged into the skin the cleanser will provide a minty-cool sensation-- I love that feeling, I get the same satisfaction from Paul Mitchell's Tea Tree Shampoo and conditioner.  The light eucalyptus scent that all of the products from this collection have, help me to feel refreshed and relaxed after a long day. The Balance Force Toner  happens to be my favorite product from their collection for a simple reason, most toners I have tried have a strong rubbing alcohol scent to them and this one does not. The lightweight Counter Balance Hydrator is going to be the product that lasts the longest, a little goes a ways with this, I use one pump, once a day. Another of my favorite go-to products when I'm absolutely exhausted is the 93,000 Miles by the obvious, Lush Cosmetics. There's just something about a quiet, hot, peppermint/eucalyptus scented shower at the end of the day that helps me balance.

 What helps you restore balance in your life?

This is a complimentary post provided by Ole Henriksen and Influenster.