These Days

These days smell like scrambled eggs and toast. Like sweaty toddler feet and and peanut butter spoons. Like sunshine on pavement and bubbles. Like chick-fil-a french fries and old target popcorn going stale in the back of the altima. Like calming lavender baby soap in the evenings and a freshly cracked blue moon after the kids are asleep.

These days sound like sleep grunts and sighs from a 4 week old. Like a rambunctious toddler riding his bike around the kitchen island for the 300th time today shouting "chase me!"Like a gentle shush and sway while floors creak under foot. Or a hard shush after one toddler meltdown too many. They sound like "yay!" from the back seat when the car finally starts after another dead battery. Like the click of the baby swing during the mid day nap. Like "yee-haw!" while a little red head slides down the twisty slide for the 10th time and like the whirr of box fans, sound machines and street sweepers passing by at 3 am.

These days taste like coffee. And more coffee. And yes, a 3rd cup please. Like the mid afternoon special treat scoop of ice cream. Like burgers on the grill one day and hot soup the next - if only the weather would make up it's mind. Like toddler fingers shoving another grape and your mouth and laughing hysterically when you pretend bite his fingers. Like PB&J crust for lunch because there is no time to make a meal for yourself and like 1,000 baby kisses on pouty toddler lips and squishy baby cheeks and toes.

These days look like hair in a messy bun for the 3rd day in a row and PJs on till noon. Like hot wheel cars filling the living room and laundry in baskets waiting to be put away. Like fire red hair bouncing through a field shrieking excitedly chasing birds. Like cozy pink footed sleepers hugging chubby baby legs and arms. Like tiny hands reaching through the slats of the crib begging to be held one more time before bedtime. Like big boxes turned into sail boats and forts. Like stickers covering yoga pants and like lovers snuggled on the couch at 9 PM for one hour of alone time before our heads need to hit pillows, too.

These days feel like heaven entering this atmosphere in the form of toddler hugs around knees and heavy-sleepy baby heads nestled in the nape of my neck. Like exhaustion and repeating the same routine for days on end. Like wet hands from dishes while wearing a newborn. Like a melting momma heart to hear a son comfort a crying new little sister. Like joyous excitement from toddlers and moms alike when daddy's car pulls into the car port. Like a marathon and like a sprint. Like grace and gentleness. Like peace and chaos rolled into one. These days feel like a million mental snap-shots to cherish every moment because I can tell these days...these wild and sweet days are slipping by too quickly.



I don't remember enjoying the early days this much with Felix.

He was such a bad sleeper and I was so overwhelmed with new mommyhood that I don't think I truly savored his sweet newborn stage. I hectically made it through each day counting down the hrs till Josh got home from work so I could pass the baby off for food, shower, and a hands free bathroom visit.  I over researched everything and under trusted my instincts. I tracked every poopy and wet diaper, timed every feeding and jumped at every little noise he made in the middle of the night sweeping him out of his bassinet waking us both way more than necessary. Not to mention just randomly waking out of the paralyzing fear that he stopped breathing in his sleep.

This time around is a far cry from that picture.  Jubilee is a big-time sleep grunter and we both sleep through it. I watch for her to lick her lips, gnaw her fists or do the open-mouthed side-lunge to know when she is hungry and ready to eat. And keeping track of diapers is not necessary...we are filling a trashbag full every couple of days - and that's proof enough to this momma to know things are working well.

The sleep sighs she breathes heavily into my ear when napping on my shoulder melt my heart and her sweet little coos when trying to latch on during breastfeeding nearly make me cry with love. Her wide open eyes with furrowed inquisitive brow when quiet-alert is so precious. And the newborn swim of jerky arms and legs moving around like a little orchestra conductor is endlessly entertaining to watch.

Jubilee already loves the sling (which is great for this mom of two) and her clenched fists love to explore daddy's beard every time he holds her.

My mom says she "naps with abandon" and I tend to agree. I don't swaddle during the day and her arms flip up above her head in a pose of victory or as if she is the starting letter for the village people.

I still have my moments of feeling overwlemed by two and feeling emotional over Felix trying to adjust to this massive life change, but overall I'm relishing these slow days of mostly sitting and nursing. Reading books and watching TV together while cuddling my sweet baby girl and boy.

Being a mother to two is grand.


Welcome Jubilee Rain

Three weeks ago today we welcomed our sweet daughter, Jubilee Rain, earth side. 9 pounds 7 ounces and 21.5 inches of adorable little girl.

The labor and delivery went smoothly and mommy is feeling great. (Maybe more on this later.)

She has completely captured our hearts with her sweet dimple chin, fuzzy light brown hair and sleepy grunts and coos. She fits wonderfully in our family and is such an easy baby so far. Nursing like a champ from the get go, sleeping good stretches (4-5 hrs at a time at night) and loving mama, daddy and brother snuggles.

Now to figure out what it means to gently love, nurture and raise TWO little ones... :)



The other night during our family walk I confessed to Josh that I want to do nothing. Nothing at all, except get his baby out. If an activity does not directly support the goal of helping me spontaneously go into labor, then I have 0% interest in it. Laundry. Nope. Making dinner. Nah. Blogging. Definitely not.

Give me a yoga ball, a long walk, some spicy food and some red raspberry leaf tea and I'm happy as a clam. 

Josh has argued that I find peace in blogging and processing my thoughts and a heart and body at peace is more likely to go into labor. 

I silently cursed him under my breath because I knew he was right.

These final days of pregnancy drag by. I try and keep Felix and I busy in the mornings by running errands, taking walks, doing crafts, but by the time lunch hits and nap time rolls around all I want to do is bounce on my yoga ball and then let him watch Octonauts while I read birth stories till Josh gets home. He pretty much get's what ever he wants because I have no energy to deal. More crackers? sure. Juice? ok. Another episode? Come snuggle your momma and grab the remote on your way. 

It's terrible. I keep rationalizing that "this is my last chance to be super lazy for a while" but  i know it's just a bad habit that is starting before harder times ahead with two in tow. Even though we are being lazy and indulgent, I am treasuring these days as a mom of one. 

I read an article last night on Huffington Post titled "11 Things Empty Nesters Want Parents of Little Kids to Know". I cried by the time I got to the end of it. Thinking about Felix growing up and leaving the house and how these days, as mundane and boring as they are, will become a blur. 

These beautiful days that currently make up my life. filled with peanut butter and jelly, hot wheels covering the kitchen floor and wild sticky curly red bed head hair in a pouf on the back of his head. 

How he says "come on willow" in a sweet high pitched voice every time he moves from one room to the next. How he grabs my face with both hands and squishes my cheeks pulling me in for a kiss. How he loves to help in the kitchen and even in the inconvenience of it all, it's my favorite thing to have him dump the measured water, flour, or salt into the bowl. And how it's gross, but cracks me up that he sneak licks of sugar out of the canister in the midsts of cookie baking. 

How he yells "Daddy home!" when we hear Josh's car pull into the car port then subsequently melts down in tears because he hates when willow barks and most of the time the first words josh hears upon entering the house are "willow loud!"

Even how he says "jay bird" for "scary part" when something makes him nervous (like the hippo at the zoo play ground) and he comes and buries his face in my thigh and grabs my hand for reassurance.

How he yells "Get me!" and we chase each other 50 times around the kitchen island. Him lapping me doing my largely pregnant waddle till he runs to a corner and is trapped and we dissolve in to tickles upon tickles upon tickles.

How we brave the cold to kick the soccer ball back and forth outside and he will throw his head back and wildly laugh for no apparent reason and that makes me laugh and then josh laughs and then we are all laughing and laughing till our bellies hurt like mad people.

Deep down I know much of it will inevitably be a blur. But for now, these are the things I want to remember. 

So I write. I pass the time till we add another little bundle to our messy, wild, overly-indulgent (for now) lives. And I write.



Oh hi! Let's pretend the last 6 month silence didn't happen. Ok? ok.

2015 is right around the corner. My little boy will be two and we will very soon be welcoming our second little one into our home. 

Yup. I'm pregnant. 34 weeks, to be exact. 

Last year was tough for a lot of reasons. I actually got pregnant early last year and lost the baby in March. It was a devastating time for our family. Then we got pregnant again in May and our next sweet bébé will be arriving around February 11th. We aren't finding out the gender this time again, however, I waffled on this decision. Part of me really wanted a girl. Check off having both a boy and girl off the proverbial list of things to accomplish in my life. I thought I would be disappointed if it came out another boy (making that moment of birth anti-climatic). I wanted time to adjust to the idea. but the more I thought about it, giving Felix a little brother and having two little boys playing together for life made my heart swell. Now, honestly, finding out when the baby makes their appearance to the world is going to be thrilling - boy or girl.

This pregnancy is feeling very similar to my last pregnancy, but also very different. Similar because it's been easy. No major health surprises in the beginning. No massive morning sickness. Easy peasy. (I know, I know...I'm lucky.) But different in the following ways. I started out at a healthier weight and have been very conscience of my health throughout. Walking 3+ miles 5 times a week. Watching sugar intake to avoid gestational diabetes (Which I have - Praise God!) And it has made everything easier. No carpel tunnel - so I don't have to worry about guitar playing problems on sunday morning. Lovely low blood pressure. And over all just feeling good. Baby doesn't seem to move as much as Felix did, but when baby does move, it feels wild. More intense and close to the surface than I ever remember felix's kicks to be. Sometimes it will shock me into a gasp or yelp of pain. Alarm. Whoever is in there is a strong little one. 

We have been preparing Felix as much as we possibly can. His world is about to be rocked. He likes to point to my stomach and say "baby" and we play momma and baby with his big stuffed panda and his little stuffed panda. The big panda actually has a pouch on it's belly and we stuff the smaller one in there and I try and explain how that's like the baby in mommy. One day it will come out and be a part of our family. "Come out baby" Felix will reply - yelling at my bulging middle.

Yesterday he lined up all of his new hot wheels on my bare belly and then used it as a ramp for about 20 minutes. And he kept saying "gentle" and softly patting my stretch-marked skin. I was melting. I think he will be a stellar big brother.

Some adorable things Felix does lately. 

  • When ever josh leaves for work (at his new job, BTW) I say "Don't forget your coffee and your lunch." Felix picked up on this and has started yelling "Foffee! Lunch!" every time Josh (or anyone) leaves the house.
  • The christmas tree was a big hit this year. Lots of interest in taking the ornaments off the tree - typical toddler stuff. We let  him pick out his own 2014 ornament at Hobby Lobby and he chose a small red robot - a bop-boop as he likes to call it. (Every time I see one I say "beep bop boop")
  • Him and willow have a love hate relationship. He growls at her when she gets too close to his food, but also loves to chase her and feed her snacks all day long. He actually is quite good at giving commands - sit, down, off, back up. smart boy.
  • His language is budding. He is a total parrot of two word phrases. Yesterday as clear as day he said "mickey mouse" after seeing a picture of the beloved character.
  • He currently has a runny nose and has become an expert at saying "tissue" and blowing his nose. I'm not sure why, but this is adorable to me.
  • Over christmas in bloomington with the whole extended family we discovered Felix may be an introvert. Small groups of 1 or 2 playmates and he is engaged and playing. Anything more and he clings to me like a koala bear. 
  • At G-ma and D-pas house before everyone arrived, felix kept putting on a spiderman costume and an american flag hat and saying "argh. Pirate" So precious.
  • The last 24 hours felix has insisted on nudity. When he takes off his clothes he says "Freeee!" and runs around the house playing as usual. Soccer. Painting. Cars. Snack time. All in the buff. Hilarious. An added bonus to this is he seems to do a pretty good job of telling me when he needs to go potty on the toilet when he is diaperless. I wasn't planning to tackle potty training till after #2 is sleeping through the night (maybe in summer of 2015) but it seems like Felix is quite interested in the concept. Aaaaaand as I type that he pees on the couch. whoops.
  • Felix gets a daily vitamin. To keep him interested, we call it his vitamin treat. Works every time. When he gets it he also loves to feed willow her daily dental bone. It's a lovely healthy ritual. 
  • He turns everything into a phone. Holds it up to his ear and says "Hello. Mama. Papa. Daddy. Nana. Boy. Play?" So sweet.

That's all for now. A little update on our growing family. Cheers to new beginnings and many blessings in 2015 for you and yours.