Natalie is sisters with one of my best friends growing up. She LOVES to have fun, laugh, and is incredibly fit. I went to a spinning class (my first one) she was teaching a few weeks ago and she had me begging for mercy. Those spin classes are no joke.
One thing I love about Natalie is her need for laughter and fun. She’s certainly had her struggles in parenting (like all of us) but she makes a conscious effort to continue laughing and enjoying life.
Natalie is also a really talented graphic designer. My go to girl for a lot of my digital design needs. you can check out her stuff on Etsy: https://www.etsy.com/shop/nattysuedesigns1
1. Give me a quick peek at your story.
I was born in Idaho Falls (yup, I’m a Spud) but spent most of growing up years in Sandy, Utah. I have 4 sisters and 2 brothers, and how I love every single one of them…not to mention that I am my parents favorite! I was your typical teenager, loved friends, boys and school (well the social part, I could have skipped the classrooms and homework)! Spent ALL of my two college years at Snow and had a blast. Backpacked Europe in 1998. Was re-aquainted with a pretty cute guy in December of 1998. Fell in love and we were married in September of 99! Almost 15 years later, I am the mother to 3, absolutely amazing kids. That’s it, life in a nutshell.
2. Tell me about an “every day moment” you are grateful for
It would have to be 5:00 to 7:00 am when I have the time to focus on me, at the gym, doing something that I love. I finish, I come home, I’m ready to conquer the day! That there helps me be a better mom and wife. I am grateful that my hubby gives me that time and he knows that is something I need ot do in my life.
3. What is one ambition you have in your life right now.
To get all my photos organized. Man, it is gonna be tough!
4. If you could speak on anything to a large group of women, what would you talk about?
FIND you. LOVE you. I think as women especially mothers, we are constantly comparing ourselves to others. I think it is so important to figure out who you are, what you want out of life, what makes you happy. Once you find that, love it and better yourself.
5. What does the phrase “create a good life story” mean to you?
I always think to myself, “what kind of movie would my life make?” Comedy, drama, love, horror, etc…I think life should involve ups, downs, good times, bad times, mistakes, laughter and love. Don’t push the bad times and the mistakes away, embrace them and learn from them. Let them define your story. Enjoy the laughter, humor and love, those are the things that will help push you through the bad.
6. Tell me something someone taught you that made an impact on your life
My parents definitely taught me to be independent. They taught me to be a hard worker, things weren’t just given to me, I had to work for them. That I am grateful for.
7. Name one event in your life that has made a significant impact on the course of your life story
I would have to say giving birth to our second son. When he was born we found out he had Down Syndrome. I had so many emotions, shock, fear, sadness. I also felt so much love, determination and felt pretty special. The scariest part at first was not knowing how to raise a child with special needs. I still don’t know how to raise a child with special needs and he is 9! You learn each day. We have raised this little guy as a family, his older brothers is his best friend and our biggest help. Little sister loves to help him and play with him (when he allows it).
I always imagined doing every day life things as a family, with him we can’t do that and I think that has definitely changed the course of my life. It has been hard on our family, we miss out on a lot of things, sporting events, vacations, activities with family and friends. We don’t do the things that other families get to enjoy as a family together. But when it all comes down to it, other families don’t get to be constantly surrounded by his giggles, hugs, silly humor, and all the many things that make him the kid he is. And that, I wouldn’t trade for anything. We are pretty lucky to have him.
8. What is something you want to accomplish you haven’t yet?
Swim with dolphins. Yep, I’m a geek.
9. What photographs are you most grateful for from your childhood or teen years?
Probably the ones that tell a significant event in my life. I also love all of the goofy ones, it shows the fun times in life.
10. What are you most proud of?
My family. Love them.
11. What is the best parenting advice/tip someone gave you?
Family first, the housework can wait. This is hard for me and will always be hard for me, I like to have a clean house. But don’t want my kids to remember the mom that was always cleaning, or a mom that was mad because the house was a mess. I want them to remember the mom that wanted to spend time with them. Don’t take me wrong, there is a time and place for housework and I believe our kids can be our number one tool in getting it done quicker. Ha!
12. Tell me something you are sure of
Candy is delicious and I can NOT deprive myself from it.
13. What is your favorite quote or your life motto?
Don’t judge. Don’t come to your own conclusions about someone. Love and be kind to everyone, no matter what. On a lighter note….”I want to spend the rest of my life laughing!” Life without laughter is boring.
14. What is your favorite part about yourself (not a physical trait)?
I like to have fun. I like to smile. Life can REALLY suck at times, but suck it up with a smile. 🙂
15. What type of photographs do you wish you had more of?
My grandparents and I. I don’t have a lot, and I want to always remember the memories with them, they are all amazing people.
16. What is something you do to help drive away fear or anxiety?
Turn the music on and dance. I love music. I love to dance. It may be only for a brief 10 minutes, but that anxiety or fear gets pushed aside for a short time. If it was possible, I would just go to Disneyland, fear and anxiety do not exist there.
17. What is your favorite part about being a mom? You least favorite part (just keeping it real on this question–I know you love your kids)?
I love that I am their go-to-girl and hope that I will always be. If they need something, they come to me.
Homework and bedtime are hands down my least favorite part. My kids area like me, they want to play, have fun, homework is not fun. I wish bedtime wasn’t my least favorite. I hear mothers that love bedtime, it is their time to lay with their kids, talk and snuggle. My kids hate going to bed, and I hate fighting them to go to bed. By the end of the day, I’m kinda done and just want bedtime to be quick and easy. Enough said.
18. Tell me something about yourself that may surprise people
Hmmmm. I don’t know. I was really shy as a child, like really shy. Grew out of that!
19. What’s one things you wish you would have known when you were younger?
The years after high school are short, accomplish things, make fun memories. You become an adult way too quick and have the rest of your life to be an adult.
And for fun:
Favorite book: I don’t like to read so the closest thing would be US weekly
Favorite family tradition: I don’t really have a favorite, I love them all. But I do love Memorial Day when the whole family visits my sisters grave and then spends the rest of the day playing yard games in my grandparents huge backyard.
Something you enjoy doing with your spouse: Dinner and a movie
Talent you wish you had: I really wish I could sing. I love to sing and that doesn’t stop me from singing, but I wish I could carry a tune.
Favorite meal: Love Mexican food!
If you never had to do one specific thing again, what would it be: LAUNDRY!
Favorite show on TV: Just a few that my DVR records weekly would be…Parenthood, Grey’s, Nashville and Scandal. Yup, a bunch of scum!
Favorite thing about your husband: His positivity and the amazing father he is.
Something you can’t life without: Tootsie rolls and cinnamon bears
What’s something you think about often: If I am teaching my children enough
(Look at those arms! Yowzers)
THANK YOU so much for doing this Natalie!! Looking forward to the next spinning class. 🙂
To read more “Real Life Stories–Women of Inspiration” interviews, click HERE