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[ad] Today I am dreaming of Christmas parties. Anyone else? We’re only halfway through the month and we’ve already had more family gatherings than I can count with so many more to go. And Christmas parties in the Bartlett household means photos…lots of photos. But I just didn't feel very photo-ready thanks to my grays (and yes, I had A LOT of grays). So I picked up @zotosprofessional hair color at @sallybeauty and these days I'm feeling gorgeous, confident, and ready to take on the holiday photos. Today on the blog, I'm sharing how I get myself photo-ready as well as what I plan to wear to this year's Christmas party! #MyAgeBeautiful #sponsored #linkinbio
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[ad] Today I am dreaming...

I've been a bit MIA lately. Why you may ask? Well, because I've been half on the struggle bus and half working on a rather large project that I've had in draft mode for far too long. And I am SO excited about it. I literally woke up the other day and decided THAT was the day I'd get started on it and I've been hooked on it ever since. If you're a mom in Southern Maine, you won't want to miss this! So be sure to sign up for our email list via the link in my bio so you can be one of the first to know what's going on.
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I've been a bit MIA...

Well, it's officially the day Zack and I have been looking forward to for a couple of years now. While we've already unofficially been "moved on" from military life for a couple of months now, today it's official that Zack is no longer an Active Duty Marine and I am no longer a military spouse. The first big chapter of his adult life and our life together has officially ended. It's scary almost when you've been living with all the stability of a lifestyle for so long. A stable job, stable income, health benefits, a home. It's been a challenging couple of months as we get more settled here in Maine and figure out the next step for our little family. But I know we have so much to look forward to in the next year and it's refreshing to know we have the opportunity to start over. I am so proud of this guy and I can't wait to see what the next chapter of our life has in store for us. •
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Well, it's officially the day...

This mama is on the struggle bus today. This morning I spent over an hour searching for Allie's sippy cup of milk only to find it in the shower...where I looked 5+ times considering that's where she was playing while I got ready for the day. I then got the incorrect order from Dunkin and to make that even worse, it was pumpkin flavored...and if you know me, you know I cannot stand anything pumpkin flavored so I couldn't even suck it up and drink it (shoutout to @mwhited8195 for bringing me the correct drink order!). Nap time wasn't any better. A solid 40 minutes of crying before Allie finally went down...then she woke up 30 minutes later 🙄 And now I'm scrambling to get everything on my to-do list done so we can officially launch Blogmas tomorrow 😬 It's been a morning and I'm about ready for my own nap at this point. But at least it's Friday? 🤷🏻‍♀️😂
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This mama is on the...

It's yet another snow day here in Maine. The last winter I spent here was in 2015 and we maybe had three snow storms all winter. This year, we've had 3-5 just in the last couple of weeks 🙄 I'm already homesick for beautiful and warm North Carolina summers 😔 anyone else here who hates winter? If you need us, Allie and I will be curled up inside with some movies and a never-ending to-do list. #bloggerlife •
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It's yet another snow day...

Blogmas starts in T-5 days! I've been working so hard on producing awesome Blogmas content these past couple of months so I'm super excited to finally start sharing it with you all this weekend. Today on the blog I'm sharing a quick breakdown of Blogmas 2018, what you can look forward to on Mainely Keating, and 25 blog post ideas for those of you who want to participate in Blogmas as well! You can find the link to the full blog post in my bio! •
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Blogmas starts in T-5 days!...

How To Divide Your Time Between Families During the Holidays

How To Divide Your Time Between Families During the Holidays

The holidays are a wonderful time of year, but it’s also a time when newlyweds are faced with a new challenge: who to spend the holidays with.  We’re very fortunate that 95% of our family lives within 30-45 minutes of one another.  This makes it easier to divide up our time during the holidays and other trips we take to our home state to visit.  Others, however, aren’t as lucky.  I have friends whose families live in opposite coasts which makes it impossible for them to see both sides of the family for every holiday.

Ideally, the end goal is to be able to celebrate the holidays with as much of your family as possible, but keep in mind that you cannot please everyone.  Chances are, someone is going to be hurt by your choice in how to spend the holiday, but ultimately, it’s up to the two of you to create a plan that works for both of you.  Your family and friends need to be understanding and willing to compromise with you as well.  I think all of these options are a win/win!

Take turns each year

If your families live in separate states (or not within reasonable driving distance of one another) then alternate each year.  Spend Thanksgiving with one side and then Christmas with the other.  Then reverse it the following year.  That way you have a full holiday with each side of the family and everyone is taking turns.  This is typically how I balanced both sides when my dad lived in Vermont.  It was a four(?) hour drive to Maine from where my dad lived so it wasn’t as doable to spend both holidays with both sides.  Everyone understood.

Split Christmas Eve and Christmas Day

If your families live close to one another than celebrate Christmas Eve with one side and Christmas Day with the other!  You could even split up Christmas Day.  This will be the option we choose this year.  We will be spending Christmas Eve with Zack’s family (and possibly visiting mine later in the night) and then Christmas morning will be spent with my side while Christmas afternoon will be spent with his.  It’s pretty balanced and this way we’ll be seeing everyone on both sides of our family,  Everyone wins.

Spend the holidays as one

The one thing I love about our family is that both sides love each other.  It’s not too difficult to get everyone together in the same room so spending the holidays as one complete family as opposed to two separate ones is very doable for us.  For Thanksgiving this year, I celebrated with Zack’s family and my dad and Jenna stopped by to visit for a bit before heading off to her parents’ house.  It was so nice to have everyone together and be able to see everyone.

Celebrate in your own home

If it’s too much to divide up the holidays (or if you simply just can’t make the trip to see them), then host the holidays in your own home.  This is a great time to create your own holiday traditions.  Extend the invite to your family and if they come, then great!  You can’t always be the one to travel to see them anyways!  They need to make an effort as well.

How do you and your significant other plan to split the holidays this year?

XOXO
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