Life in a few Snapshots

Life has been amazing lately. Here are some pictures and stories on what’s been going on in the Cross household these past few days.

many hats of a mom blog

I volunteered at Kelsey’s school this morning. Her kindergarten class was having a “fall football party” and it was the perfect excuse for me to actually shower, curl my hair and put on a dress. When you’re on maternity leave, you don’t do much of that. At least I don’t.

many hats of a mom blog

The St. Regis Aspen Resort sent Nolan his very own tooth fairy box! It was the sweetest gesture. I had one just like it when I was young – only mine wasn’t nearly as fancy. It was a small wooden box and it wasn’t personalized. This one takes the cake.

pie

Speaking cake (bad transition?), I baked! It was so easy to make, even Kelsey & Colton were able to help me. I saw the recipe on the Food Network (I watch a lot of TV lately). I highly recommend it – the pie, not a lot of TV.  Here is the recipe from The Pioneer Woman. She gives a great tip on her show: Once you’ve transferred the batter to your pie crust, take the extra leftovers and put it in the refrigerator – it makes a great pudding on its own!

many hats of a mom blog

I became a soccer mom! This beautiful (and oh-so serious) girl of mine had her first soccer game over the weekend. No, I don’t own a minivan. No, I’m not getting a minivan. Yes, I am officially a soccer mom and proud of it.

many hats of a mom blog

many hats of a mom blog

Colton, Kelsey and I play cards every morning before school. It’s becoming “our thing”. The other day, Colton was tatted with all of these super hero stickers. I bought him stickers to give to each of his friends at school and I think he went a little overboard on his fair share of the goods.

nolan 20 days

Nolan and I are enjoying every waking moment together. Here’s an iPhone pic I snapped of him this morning. I seriously can’t get enough of those cheeks. Next week, we have our one month doctor’s appointment. I can’t wait to see how much he has grown.

Ryan and I aren’t too experienced but so far this three-kid-thing is more than we ever hoped for. We are so incredibly happy. I hope your week is off to a great start.

Not-so-Newborn Photos

Newborn Photos - Mom Blogger Many Hats of a Mom

Funny story: I tried taking “newborn photos” of my little, Nolan Ryan Cross. The thing is, he’s 17 days old and he is already over 11lbs and 23 inches. Which means, all of the cute baskets and “newborn poses” that I put him in just looked ridiculous. Let’s face it: he doesn’t look like a newborn. So … I scrapped the traditional newborn photos and just took pics of him doing his thing.

Newborn Photos - Mom Blogger Many Hats of a Mom

He also wouldn’t sleep. Aren’t you supposed to get photos of them sleeping? I kind of like the photos of him more aware though. I like seeing into those baby blues. His expressions make me giggle.

Newborn Photos - Mom Blogger Many Hats of a Mom

My best friend, Angie’s mother gave us this dog from Anthropologie at my daughter’s baby shower (five years ago!). I love how this little pup has made his way into the arms of each of my three children.

Nolan Ryan Newborn Photos - Many Hats of a Mom Blog

Mom blog - Arizona

We call his feet “puppy paws” – big feet for such a young baby. He will soon grow into these puppy paws of his.

Newborn Photos - Mom Blogger Many Hats of a Mom

How cute are these anchor diapers from The Honest Company? The girls at my work gifted us these and I love them. Sadly, this will be my only pack. If you know my husband, you’ll know that he would never pay double for diapers just to get a cute, printed booty. So, I’ll just enjoy these while they last.

Nolan Ryan Newborn Photos - Mom Blogger

Newborn Photos - Mom Blogger Many Hats of a Mom
Nolan Ryan Newborn Photos - Mom Blogger

We just love this little man so much. Our family is complete. xo

Taking Heidi’s Family Holiday Photos

family holiday photos | Phoenix photographer

family holiday photos | Phoenix photographer

family holiday photos | Phoenix photographer

family holiday photos | Phoenix photographer
family holiday photos | Phoenix photographer
family holiday photos | Phoenix photographer

family holiday photos | Phoenix photographer

family holiday photos | Phoenix photographer

family holiday photos | Phoenix photographer

For some crazy reason, Heidi trusted me to take her family holiday photos. I was honored and so incredibly nervous. This was the first time I was taking photos of someone outside of my own family and I was so worried I would mess it up. I found this desert area outside of the Sheraton Wild Horse Pass Resort where we were able to grab some gorgeous sunlight and desert views. I am so happy with how everything turned out.

Her kids were amazing! I wore a funny reindeer hat with jingle bells (so they would look at the camera) and brought them two cupcakes as a reward once we were finished. That pretty much sweetened the deal and we were able to get some great smiles. As we were leaving the first location, we got in our cars to drive to this cool wooden bridge that I had spotted. Maya (Heidi’s daughter) asked if she could ride with me. So, I strapped her into Kelsey’s car seat, blasted a little Taylor Swift “Shake it off” and we continued the photo shoot at the bridge.

Seriously, that Maya has a personality larger than life. She kept posing herself in the middle of the family (front and center) and I would have to say, “Maya, honey … can you back up just a bit?” It was the cutest. And her love for her brother, Matthew, is just heaven to watch. She was so great with him and you can see how much he just adores his big sister.

When Heidi and Mitch would pose for pictures, the kids would just laugh and laugh. They loved seeing their parents in front of the camera. “Let’s have them kiss,” Maya would say. And then immediately, I would get the parents to smooch and I would hear the sweet little giggles of their kids in the distance.

So much love and laughter at this photo shoot. It makes me think this is why photographers do their job. It’s the moments like this that are captured behind the camera that make for the best memories. Thank you, Heidi, for this great experience!

Heidi and Stephanie

Every day should be like this

lifestyle blog many-hats-of-a-mom-blog
Saturday night was all about family. Ryan and I took the kids out for dinner and walked around one of our Phoenix resorts enjoying the sunset and snapping some photos. We let the kids run around the grass, climb the trees and chase after ducks in the lake. It was truly the best day. Doing life with these three individuals makes for some of the most memorable moments I have ever experienced.

mom blog

I can’t help but laugh at this photo. I mean, who holds a child like that?

mom blog

This was the sweetest moment. We were standing by the lake, when I snapped this photo of Colton. His arms were crossed and he was staring into the distance, as if to contemplate the meaning of life or something. It was really deep. Then, I realized he was just pouting because Ryan told him he couldn’t jump into the lake with the ducks.

mom blog

mom blog

mom blog

His expression is priceless! Yes, Colton. Your mom and sister are crazy.

mom blog

The best part? I can hit repeat on this day any time that I want because wherever we are, life feels this wonderful.

some of my favorite St. Regis photos

St. Regis Bahia Beach

There’s been a lot going on personally over here. A trip to the ER and stitches for my daughter (more on that later), a lot of corporate deadlines, and late nights working trying to catch up with my inbox.

On top of it all, I’ve gotten into this weird groove at work. I find myself distracted most of the time. I will be working on something, and then an email – a thought – an instant message – takes me to another place.

This just happened again tonight. I’m up late working (boo!) and I was searching in our internal asset library for a St. Regis piece of collateral when I found some of the most beautiful photos. I just had to stop what I was doing (also see: got distracted yet again) and share these remarkable St. Regis hotel photos with you.

I’m so lucky to work for a company whose work and design inspires me every day. Check them out and you’ll see what I mean – I’ll put money on it that you’re instantly inspired to travel. Pictured up top is The St. Regis Bahia Beach, Puerto Rico.

Photos by Starwood Preferred Guest

The St. Regis Mauritius Resort

The St. Regis Mauritius Resort

The St. Regis Deer Valley Resort, Utah
The St. Regis Deer Valley Resort, Utah


The St. Regis Deer Valley, Utah

St. Regis Punta Mita
The St. Regis Punta Mita

The St. Regis Bejing
The St. Regis Beijing

St. Regis New York
The St. Regis New York

The St. Regis Abu Dhabi
The St. Regis Abu Dhabi

St. Regis Hotels & Resorts
The St. Regis Princeville Resort

St. Regis Hotels & Resorts
The St. Regis Aspen Resort, Colorado
The St. Regis Osaka
The St. Regis Osaka

Suite photos I just had to have

Because my job is amazing (sorry, but it is) I get to work with some of the best hotels in the industry. Some I directly work with and others I stare at from a distance in awe. Like the St. Regis New York – the first St. Regis to open its doors back in 1904. Oh, how lovely it is. The heritage behind the brand … well, that’s something worth looking up. It’s a pretty cool story about the Astor family.

Anyway, part of my job is to source good imagery for marketing email campaigns. Images that make you want to book a stay at our hotels. While I was doing this, I came across some amazing photos of the suite entrances, hotel corridors and interior rooms of this hotel. Something about these photos caught my eye.

It’s the architecture, the welcoming entrance, the colors of the doors. They are all so intriguing. I ended up printing some of these photos for my own office. I just have to find some frames that do them justice and then I’ll be able to stare at these pretty images all day.

Makes you want to visit, doesn’t it?

St. Regis New York -Hotel Corridor St. Regis New York -Dior Suite Living Room St. Regis New York-Dior Suite Living Room St. Regis New York-Tiffany Suite - Dining Room with Central Park view St. Regis New York-Bentley Suite Living Room

St. Regis New York-Tiffany Suite EntranceSt. Regis New York-Royal Suite Entrance St. Regis New York-Grand Suite Entrance St-regis-new-york-imperial-suite-entrancePhotos property of The St. Regis New York hotel.

The Family Hat: Weekends

Sprinkled donuts. Button noses. Squishy baby butts. Handsome husband. And one obsessive chocolate lab.  That’s my weekend and I wouldn’t trade it for the world.

bosa donuts family family

familyfamily

The Travel Hat: His and Her Hikes

Ryan and Rob hiked one morning. I mean, really hiked. Like, a we-spotted-deer-within-yards-from-us-because-we-were-so-far-up-the-mountain kind of hike. I spotted them on their decline, just as I was looking outside my room window (note: lazy and tired) and snapped a pic.

The next day, the girls decided to give it a whirl. We took Kelsey and made it to the … well, not really even close to the top, but we got a good work out in regardless. Or, I did rather. I ended up carrying Kelsey half way up the hill.

She loved it though. We would pass really tall grass and colorful thistles and she would say, “these are like the flowers in Pixie Hollow”. So cute. And sad to admit that the only reason I knew they are called thistles is from Tinker Bell movies too.

HIS HIKE PHOTOS

hiking 12

hike in deer valley

deer valley hike hike in deer valley hike in deer valley hike in deer valley hike in deer valley

hike in deer valley(See the boys? Look closely.)

hike in deer valley

(Ryan picked Kelsey a bouquet of wildflowers on his hike)

wildflower boquet

HER HIKE PHOTOS 

hike in deer valley

hike in deer valleyhike in deer valley

hike in deer valley, utah

 hike in deer valley        hike in deer valley

 deer valley hike