Our Miracle

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If you follow me over on social media, then you know what this post is about.  JD has always wanted to be a father; always. He couldn't wait for us to be married so we could officially begin trying to start our family. I think his excitement to have a family came from his small family. JD and I have struggled with conceiving for over five years, including the heartbreak of two miscarriages. I will save our long fertility story for another post. Last year, we decided to host an exchange student that completely changed our view on what we wanted our future to look like. Hosting Nicky - gave us an incredible view and perspective on our own lives and lifestyle and what parenting a teen is like and even teens who are independent require lots of time commitments. Which made us realize having a baby may not be for us; we both work a lot, are dedicated to the gym and covet our hobbies and friendships and love to travel long-distance-for long periods of time.  After Nicky completed his time here with us, we decided our family of just us and our little #ladyfox was enough. We embraced our season of life and the challenges that come along with basically being human. Finally, after all these years of heartbreak and doctors and making difficult decisions on what steps were next - we were finally happy with life together just being us. While I won't go into detail here; we had a hard Summer, and come Fall; we began seeing a marriage counselor and really started seeing each other and our marriage through fresh eyes and with lots of grace. This past wedding season was the busiest I’ve ever been. I closed out the year a week before Thanksgiving and was just exhausted- more exhausted than I have ever been. I retired to my hotel room; took a hot bath - fell asleep in the bath tub - only to wake up hours later dragging myself out of freezing water and straight to bed - still soaking wet. I can’t ever remember feeling as exhausted as I was. I know now; the level of exhaustion I was feeling was because I was nearly 6 weeks pregnant.

We’re pregnant. Just saying that and typing it h e r e , has tears running down my cheeks. There is an incredible little heartbeat that is growing inside me and making me wonder everyday whether he or she will have my green eyes or the blue eyes that stole my heart nearly 14 years ago.

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I think it’s incredible that after so much heartbreak; here we are in this place - with a little miracle we never expected - but always hoped for- for so very long - growing in my belly. I’m currently about 16 weeks now. It’s a little later than most people announce their pregnancy; however with our history of heartbreaks - we wanted to be sure before we made the announcement official.

There are so many of my dear friends who are awaiting their miracles and battling heartbreak of not being parents yet. To all of you in that season - I am praying for you and I want you to know your time will come too.

Much love to you all.

Cass

Hello Friends! {Sweeping a little dust off the space}

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Guys - I feel like every time I come over to this little white space - I need to dust it off a bit. I so easily lose track of time and let too much time pass between posts. As an aside my friend & brand designer Becky, over at Salty Anchor Design and I have been behind the scenes pouring so much heart & soul into a little goodness to brighten up and refresh this little space of mine. I have been working like crazy behind the scenes to breathe new life into this space, including the entire website and this small but mighty brand I've built. I'm beginning to be recognized around my area by my branding and Instagram (so weird!) and strangers know me by my blog. It's just so very different and after it happened the first couple times I became a hermit. Afraid to post & let people see my life for what it really is. I'm so transparent over here on the blog; chatting about my life and business and all the struggles openly and honestly. Taking some time away from social media always allows me to rethink and evaluate goals and things in life that are truly important.  After taking some time away and time off - especially after having our exchange student - I really just needed some time.  

I have so much goodness to share with you all for this upcoming Fall Wedding Season. Lots of shoots planned and goodies tucked in.  We plan on launching the new face of Cassandra Dattoli in February and I can't wait for you to see.  Along with the new face and brand refresh I'll be adding floral services as a stand alone service and opening up my workshop and studio to educating new and upcoming wedding planners and florists and selling arrangements via a new shop.  Here's to us big dreamers; may we never stop dreaming and working for the things that light up our life. 

 

xo xo - C

IF I KNOW WHAT LOVE IS {Life Lately}

 

I stumbled across this quote a little while ago from the lovely Bridal Musings. Instantly it hit a chord with my heart. You guys know how dear to my heart I hold quotes but this one is a little more than just what meets the eye. I haven't shared this with you guys yet, but a little over two months ago, JD & I spent about a week apart. I let busy take over my life, my marriage and my home. I let flower scraps lay on the floor for far too long and checklists take over my life.  I let radio guest appearances, magazine features and blog collabs be more important to me than my marriage. I let seeing the end-goal become the only vision I saw. I didn't see that I was putting myself, my health and my husband last. This little boutique of mine has grown rapidly.. like times 100 in the last six months. My follower count, subscriber count and blog views became far too important to me. I didn't see how it was hurting him to see me sleepless, tired and not spending quality time with him. I needed a refresh - I needed to focus and find my heart again. I spent a handful of nights sleeping at my parent's house, and what I didn't do: was open up social media. I didn't care what anyone said or thought about the mess I created. All I cared about was finding my heart and Joe and us finding our way back to each other.

Six weeks. I took six weeks off of social media. I didn't open the apps, I turned off all notifications.    Those six weeks were amazing - I found I had time for things that fed my soul and heart and quit worrying about those perfect lighting moments and angles. The pictures I did take ? Were of our special moments together, big belly laughs and stolen kisses. I sleep now. No really, I sleep every night - like "wake up with a let's conquer the day spirit" My devotions are first thing in the morning followed by my workout and Foxylilpom walk. I set boundaries. My days off - are now truly days off. JD and I are closer and stronger than ever. Trust me we are so far from any version of perfect there is, but what came out of this little refresh was a renewed spirit and appreciation for my husband. There is nothing more important to me than my Faith and my husband and our marriage.  

I lost some followers. I say that and I have no shame in that. I don't worry about how many comments I get on my photos or how many new followers I get every day. I still take special care in curating my social media photos to align them with my brand, but I don't worry about sharing every single moment - or spreading news like wildfire. Don't get me wrong, social media has it's perks - I'm a big proponent of Instagram and building community - but I see & hear so many people using it to judge their quality of life and self-esteem. I actually stumbled across a funny post somewhere that said "calm down, Instagram is like monopoly money, it's not real". How sad and true it is. We can all take a pic, and spend hours editing it and only put online what we WANT the world to see, not what our lives are really like. Taking a photo after everything has been cleaned, vacuumed and perfectly arranged. I see that far, far too often. I want to take pictures of our home being lived in, loved on and real. A couch that has zillions of throw pillows all over the place because we'd rather sit close together with our legs intertwined and holding hands, rather than worry about keeping the $30 pillows perfectly fluffed. I want to take a picture of us out belly laughing over an inside joke from eight years ago, than sitting around a dining room table that has pictures perfectly hung around it. Life happens in the imperfect moments and to hell with perfection and posting a perfect life - I want to live, I want to laugh and hell I want to love with passion and fierceness.

I now know what love is. Love is not JUST loving someone with their flaws; love is loving someone enough to tell them truths - loving them enough to want the best from them and for them. I know love because my husband loves me enough to tell me truths so we can be closer to each other. He is truly my hero in every way. I share this with you so hopefully you don't make that same mistake - seeing the end-goal and keeping "your eye on the prize' is a must - but not if you bulldoze over all the things that are dear to you. Because you want to share that prize, whatever it is for you, with them. Happy Tuesday loves, from my imperfect heart to yours.

xoxo - C

Beautiful design above by the gals behind Bridal Musings.