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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!...

LDR 101 | Keeping The Spark Alive

LDR 101: Keeping The Spark Alive | Keating & Co.

One of my biggest worries when Zack left was our ability to stay close and keep the spark alive.  Of course I knew we loved each other and would do everything we could to make it work out, but I legitimately worried that the distance would somehow ruin our entire marriage.  I’ve seen it happen plenty of times to know that it’s possible.

Although he’s on the other side of the world, I’ve felt closer than ever to Zack these past couple months.  I never expected to get butterflies every time he texts me or to smile when I wake up to a good morning text. There are so many simple things that we do on a daily basis that has really helped us stay and feel connected to one another.  So here are my top ways of keeping the spark alive!

Schedule Skype dates.

Sometimes just seeing each other’s faces and hearing their voice can be so helpful to a long distance relationship.  I always feel a bit better when I can hear Zack’s voice.  It’s so calming to actually hear him reassure me that everything is okay and that he loves me and can’t wait to see me.  Unfortunately, we have yet to make Skype or FaceTime work out for us, but we hope to try it again this weekend.

Send good morning/good night texts.

Since we’re in very different time zones, good morning and good night texts are crucial for us.  I love waking up to good morning texts even though it’s nighttime where he is and I like when he takes the time to say goodnight to me even though it’s the middle of the day there.  I’m not sure why, but this makes me feel so much closer to him.

Communicate daily.

No joke, I just got advice from someone the other day who insisted it wasn’t important to talk to your significant other every day…I almost died.  Texting is currently my only form of communication with Zack.  If we just randomly stopped talking for no reason, then what?  Communication is key to any successful relationship.  It is important to communicate daily.  If your schedules don’t allow a phone call or Skype date, then send your partner check-ins throughout the day to let them know you’re thinking of them and to see how they’re day is going.  I always smile when I receive an unexpected text from Zack.  It really brightens my day!

Plan for the future.

I can’t even begin to tell you how much we have planned for the next few years.  Buying a home, starting our family, graduate school, starting my career, Zack getting out of the military.  It’s all so exciting to think about.  It’s really helped to talk about those things.  It makes it easier for me to picture an end to the distance and focus on all the positive things we have planned for our life when he returns.

Remember the little things.

On our anniversary this year, Zack remembered to text me right at midnight to wish me a happy anniversary.  I honestly thought he had forgotten about it.  It had been October 5th there for a good 13 hours and he still hadn’t said anything to me.  I even hadn’t heard from him in hours because it was the middle of the day for him and he was at work.  But right at midnight, I got my anniversary text.  Even in the middle of his work day, he still managed to keep an eye on the time and text me right when it hit midnight on the east coast.  This meant so much to me and really helped to put me in a not so crabby mood for the rest of the day.

Send snail mail.

I’ll admit, snail mail to Japan is a bit pricey.  So I probably wont be sending it too often.  But sometimes sending gifts or handwritten letters can really brighten your partner’s day.  It shows that they took the time to create something you’d love and send it your way.  It’s so different from sending a “love text”.  To me, a love letter is way more personal.

Do things together.

I know you two are apart, but there are actually tons of things you two could do together.  If you’re able to, get on Skype or FaceTime and watch the same movie together.  Pick a show on Netflix to binge watch together and then talk about it at the end of every season.  Zack’s currently catching up on Supernatural and I’m supposed to be doing the same so we can start season 12 (?) together when he comes home next year.  We are also both on the path to working out more and eating better which is great because I feel like I’m not alone in it.  We’re doing it together even though we’re thousands of miles apart.  Get creative!  There are tons of things you can do together!

What do you do to keep the spark when your significant other is away?

XOXO
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