Wednesday, July 20, 2016

life lately

Hi all! I thought it was a good time to pop in and throw a few pictures up on the blog from life in the past few weeks. And stick around (or skip everything and just scroll down, I'll never know ;) ) for the end of the post because I have a little announcement!

We have been crazy busy lately and my energy is draining daily! A day (or even a few hours) out and about usually means that I end up spending the next couple of days recovering. Along with the glucose test that I'm about to take, my OB has ordered lots of other bloodwork to see if anything is going on! More than likely it's just what comes with being the mom of 5 and one on the way, but if there's some vitamin deficiency, it would be nice to know! In the meantime, I'm feeling lots of "mom guilt" for not having the energy to do much with the kids or manage a household. 
Every once in a while, I get bursts of "energy" and we try to do fun stuff in that time. During one of the many summer rain storms we've had, we finally made it outside to play in the rain. Most of the storms have been filled with lightning so it's been hard to get the chance to get out and play during them. 

followed by the sweetest little gloomy day naptime

If we're anywhere near a swing set, you better believe that this cute little girl will be on the swing and asking you to push her...for the next several hours haha.

I actually hate melons of all kinds (I wish I didn't because they look so delicious!) but my kids sure do love watermelon. It's a favorite summer treat around here!

I need to make an effort to pull out the DSLR more often. Desmond went from taking his first steps a few weeks ago to pretty much full time walking now. Seeing babies learn to walk is one of my favorite milestones. He looks so proud of himself all the time and stops to clap multiple times during his strolls around the house.  

Kai never does normal smiles for pictures these days. My favorite trick is to ask him to tell me a joke while I snap a ton of pictures. A natural smile usually makes an appearance.

Forest Park + middle of the afternoon on a HOT, humid day = crabby kids, crabby parents. It was definitely a park fail! But we made up for it later that night by going to another park at sunset. 

How's that for a random post? This type of post isn't the most glamorous or exciting type of post to write/read. But it's our life. And our life is definitely not always glamorous or exciting. As much as I struggle with hard days, it's nice to look back and see the good moments that popped up in between. It reminds me to always look for the little things. It also reminds me to pull out the DSLR more often!

If you've stuck around this long, I have a little announcement! I purchased a website domain! This simple little blog is getting a much needed update, after my husband's persistent encouragement. He knows how much this space means to me so he's helping me build a new site. But let's be honest--he's doing most of the work because I know nothing about that stuff. Stay tuned for the new site with a much better look than what I have going on right now! 

Have a good rest of the week!

Friday, July 15, 2016

28 week bumpdate (with a video!)

It's so crazy that I'm already 28 weeks, which also means that I'm in the 3rd trimester--the final stretch! If you want to know how the pregnancy has been going, make sure you go all the way to the end of this post where I have included my first bumpdate video! 

This has been one stressful week for us. This time last week, I was going back and forth, trying to decide if I needed to go to the ER. I had a pain in my jaw/tooth/whole left side of my face. It was so severe that I was curled up in a ball, hardcore crying. And though I'm a wimp with pain, I usually never cry from it. I decided to wait it out until the next day. I have had pain off and on this past week but it's almost all the way gone at this point--so weird! I did find out that I need one, if not two, root canals on Monday (and to be honest, I'm completely dreading it!!)

These pictures were taken on Wednesday night, right after a fast, but powerful storm blew through our area--taking out our electricity for 24.5 miserable hours! It was sad to have to throw out all the food that went bad in that time but I'm thankful that we are safe and that no real damage was caused!

Those pictures with Evangeline are some of my favorites ever!! Don did a great job capturing this stage of life of me with all my little loves. It's stressful to get everyone in the shot sometimes (especially since my boys are entering the stage where all their smiles look fake and forced haha) but I truly treasure each and every picture. And the promise of cupcakes made the kids extra well behaved and motivated to get into a few shots with me :)

Can we just pause and talk about this maternity dress that I'm wearing?! It's from Mamma Belle and I am in love! I don't own anything else in this color and I think I need to change that because it is too good! The maternity clothing industry has come a long way since my first pregnancy (and so has my style--or lack thereof!) I love the ruching on the sides and the black and white floral pattern. But I think my favorite part is that it's lightweight and so comfortable. Comfort is pretty much my number one requirement for clothes these days--and dresses and leggings are my comfort clothes! Mamma Belle also offers other beautiful maternity and nursing friendly dresses, so be sure to pop over and check out the site!
**this dress was kindly sent to me but I was not asked to give a review. These are my real, honest opinions!!


Now, before you watch this video, a few disclaimers!!!
1) I usually end up editing myself out of every video we make! It is extremely awkward to talk to a camera--but I've heard it gets easier with practice? We'll see! But editing this video was tough and I was cringing the whole time. How do my friends deal with me? 
The fact that I'm posting this video is actually kind of a miracle because after I made it, I wanted to just delete the whole thing!

2) The clip that appears while I mention my exhaustion cracks us up--so I hope you get a kick out of it too ;)

3) I recorded the talking videos right as the crazy storm was blowing through. So there are some weird lighting shifts. Also, you may hear kids being loud in the background because...well, #reallife.

4) If I don't go into hiding after posting this, I may do a couple more videos before baby girl is here. But I'm not making any promises!

5) Fun fact: Evangeline fell into the pond while we were videoing at the park. I thought for sure we would have to leave right then and there but she toughed it out. I still keep laughing about it though.

Anyway, enjoy! And thanks for reading/watching!

Tuesday, July 12, 2016

my baby is one!

We officially have a one year old! We celebrated Desmond's first birthday today. This year zipped by so fast. Especially after the wait for him felt like so long. When I was pregnant with him, I was sick and in pain almost the entire second half of my pregnancy. I was also preparing to be a bridesmaid in my best friend's wedding as well as in the process of purchasing our first home. It was such a busy season of our lives and I had such a hard time feeling any sort of bond with him before he was born like I had with the others.

I had many worries that maybe I wouldn't love him as much as I loved the other kids. I had heard other mothers voice this concern before and never understood how they could feel that way. I always knew I would have no problem bonding with my child. But this time just felt different. And while I knew I loved Desmond, I felt like our bond just wouldn't be the same.

But when he was born, all of those feelings quickly vanished. I then found myself feeling so much in love with him as a newborn that I was wanting another baby pretty much as soon as he came out haha. Ever since then, I still feel a special bond with this little guy, our baby #5. This past year with him has been such a joy. 

(It takes a special kind of love to post my swollen pregnancy face on my blog!!)

(photos by Liam and/or Kai)

So as what happens with the 5th child (at least in this home--with all of the busyness) we had a simple little birthday celebration with just our family...getting our free Chick-fil-a for Cow Appreciation Day and eating cupcakes made with a box mix.

Desmond didn't mind as he dove in, face first, for his first bite.

And now for all the "fun facts" that probably only a mom would love!
Desmond started walking in the past few weeks, perfecting his walk every day. He's determined to get it down so he can keep up with everyone else.

He loves mimicking sounds and waving and clapping his hands. He can say "hi" "mama" "dada" "uh oh" and "whoa!" (I think that's it!!) But he'll only say them when he wants to. He's pretty stubborn about talking.

He likes to stare at everybody outside of our family with a blank stare and makes them work very hard for a smile. But once he warms up to a person and his surroundings, he's very carefree and super happy. His personality is hilarious and I spend a ton of time cracking up about everything he's doing.  

He still sleeps in our room (in a playpen) because he wakes up early and I don't want to have to walk up the stairs to get him in the mornings haha. Part of me looks forward to him moving in with his brothers (and they beg for it all the time!) but the other part loves walking into our room every nap time or at night and seeing the adorable way he's sleeping. Don and I text pictures to each other almost daily when we catch him in a sweet little pose.

I love this kid to the moon and back. It's always so crazy to think that one day soon I'll be saying "I can't even remember Desmond as a baby!" 

But like with all the others, I love that I get to experience the joy of watching him grow. Love you and happy birthday, Desmond Reese!

Wednesday, July 6, 2016

Fourth of July!

Our July 4th this year was pretty good! This was the first time in at least 5-6 years that Don was able to celebrate with us without having to leave early! His days off fall on Sunday and Monday nights, so it happened to fall on his weekend this year. We were so excited until we saw that rain was in the forecast for the whole weekend :( Major bummer! But thankfully the rain cleared and we were able to enjoy the evening together! I just wanted to share a few pictures from our weekend.

Saturday was rainy so we had a red, white, and blue indoor picnic. Strawberries, blueberries, and yogurt bowls. I was able to snap a few pictures--and then faster than I was even able to prepare everything, it was gone.

a few iphone pictures with our popsicles and picnic foods

On Sunday night, we let the older boys stay up to watch fireworks from the deck with us. It was so sweet to make that memory with them. We happen to have an amazing view of tons of fireworks displays from our house. We also planned to take some fun sparkler pictures together but didn't get too far into it until our lighter ran out of fluid. So this was the best we got. I think they'll remember that night with us for a while though. They were so giddy to stay up with us.

I'll be honest--the morning of the 4th just started out bad. I was really feeling the pregnancy hormones. It didn't help that it was super gloomy and I thought that our evening may be ruined. I was grumpy and I'm not proud. But the day finally turned around and we had a fun evening!

Thanks to my sweet friend, Mayci, for snapping a few family shots for us! Wouldn't you know it? Never all looking good at the same time ;)

The boys were off with their friends most of the evening, shooting off fireworks. But I had to snap one shot of Don and Liam in their matching outfits.

I thought FOR SURE that she was going to be terrified of holding the sparkler. Then she did 6 in a row and was still begging to do more!

My BFF and her husband celebrated their one year anniversary on the 4th so we had a little re-creation of their first dance--plus a new baby that will be making her appearance very soon here! I thought it was adorable to see my kids watching.

I also thought this little guy would be terrified of fireworks. Turns out he loves them! So no scared little ones this year!!

 I hope everyone else had a great holiday weekend and an easy recovery. I'm still recovering after a couple days--that's #momlife for you. We still have some sparklers and a few other little fireworks left over so we'll be getting some use out of those!

And thanks to everyone who voted on the blog title! It's still yet to be determined but now we're one step closer to figuring it out! Enjoy the rest of your week!

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