happy six months ellie!

happy six months ellie!

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height: 25.5″

weight: 15 lbs 2 oz

what?! what?! you’re six months?! whaaaaaaaaaaaaa!!! i can’t believe it. it’s painfully happy. i love this stage, you are amazing and i am utterly sad that it is flying by, my last sweet baby.

yes, ellie is our last kid and i am soaking in every little detail, every little moment, and cherishing every second with this sweet, sweet babe.

she has rolled over! yaayyyyyy! i have to admit, i am not as aggressive with giving her tummy time, etc. obviously as per second child – i am a bit more laid back with having her ‘meet’ standards and milestones. so, i put her on her tummy time the other day and baby girl rolled right over! i am so proud of her!

she babbles like a drunken babe. she talks nonsense, drones on forever, and doesn’t care who listens. it’s too cute! i want to know what she is really saying but i really don’t care because it’s so adorable!

she still feeds at night. ohhhhhhhhhh how i am tired. she gets up 4-5 hours after she goes down for the night. so, that is usually around 3-4 in the morning and most likely she will wake at 6am for another feeding and tries falling back asleep until 8 if i don’t have to be somewhere. she still eats every 2 hours except for her naps and speaking of naps, she is not very consistent. she’s very sporadic in her sleep patterns and, again, i blame it on me not being so regimented. olive always napped at 10am and then again around 3pm. ellie typically falls asleep around 10-11am for an hour and then will take a long nap in the afternoon around 1 or 2 pm. sometimes she will skip her morning nap and take a long afternoon one. she’s become more constant with naps but not consistent with the timeframes.

she hasn’t fully sat up by herself. we’re waiting! she can sit for a minute or so and then she gets very tired. it’s so stinkin’ cute watching her sit. she will be sitting and then she starts to get tired and then she starts to lean forward and her head will almost plop down on her feet. it’s the cutest and funniest thing to see!  she is also ready for food! we are on the cusp of feeding her, so next month, you will get to read about her first time eating solid foods! yay! i am so excited for this!

olive loves ellie and ellie loves olive. watching these two sisters together is like being in heaven. they are so kind, doting, and happy when they are right next to each other. i am going to relish in these sweet moments because i know in a few years, they will be fighting and pulling each other’s hair! hahaha! well, not really but…

ellie is so fun, sweet, smiley, and loving! she wakes up with a smiley face and is so darn happy it’s almost unbelievable. she chills with me all day and doesn’t complain. she gives the sweetest smiles and hugs and loves to be held. i love her sooooooo much i feel insane.

happy six months sweet baby girl. we are so excited to see what next month holds for you!

xoxo

my big birthday weekend

i was so excited for my birthday weekend!

hc had planned a fun agenda and i couldn’t wait to relax and celebrate. i still can’t believe i have hit the big 4-0. whaaaaaaaa? seriously, wtf? what happened? i still feel eternally 28 but those wrinkles and gray hairs are finally catching up with me. eek!!!!!

i really can’t tell you what i imagined what it would be like turning 40. i never really fretted about it or thought i would have a big hurrah for it. one, we ended up having a baby and two, i am one of those ‘moms’ that really loves to spend time with her family. don’t get me wrong…i love having date nights with hc and spending quality time with him but i have become a moooooooooommy. it doesn’t feel right when the kids are away, especially if we are out locally. i miss them dearly. now, give me a warm, tropical get away with hc…i can be convinced to leave the kids behind. hahaha!

anyhoo, we started out our morning quite chill – coffee, chaos, and cuddling. we packed everything but the kitchen sink to take downtown with us. oh my goodness. we seriously pack everything when we head out the door with the kids. first on our agenda was to meet the fam at macy’s on state for a fun holiday outing! we love looking at all the decor, hearing the christmas music, listening to the jingle of all the bells around us, and just enjoying the crazy chaos of the store. we met up on the 7th floor for lunch, bought toys, headed down to the walnut room to view the tree, and then we were off to the ornament area to pick out our ornaments of the season!

after spending a few hours at macy’s, we headed on over to block 37 to do some more shopping. after eating, shopping, a trip to starbucks, more eating and shopping, we finally retired to our hotel room. hc had booked a lovely room at the james hotel. it was so cute and cool! i loved the decor inside! our room was super cozy and i really enjoyed the warmth and friendliness of the staff.

as soon as we were inside, olive was out. she passed out in the car and actually stayed sleeping while i carried her into the hotel and up the elevator and into the room! olive slept, ellie laid around, and hc and i got ready for dinner! olive woke up a bit later and relaxed in front of the t.v. with ellie. it was too adorable to see them chillin’ together!

we got all jazzed up and went to david burke’s restaurant for dinner. it was sooooo awesome. we loved our server, we loved the food, and we loved how kind everyone was! everything was delicious and we had such a great time with my brother dan, who joined us for dinner. what made the night even prettier was that it had started snowing and it looked so serene and lovely.

after dinner, we retired to our hotel room. olive and ellie got cozy on the bed again and hc had ordered dessert and wine to be sent up for this birthday mama! it was a perfect end to a perfect day! i had such a wonderful time!

 the next morning, we headed to southport grocery for brunch! while we waited, we picked out gift baskets for our neighbors {something we do every year}. i love shopping there and gathering fun goodies for the christmas baskets. they have the most yummy, delectable treats to make any recipient happy! we enjoyed a fabulous brunch and spent the next hour shopping along the street. oh how i love chicago during the holidays.

it was a fabulous birthday weekend and i have to thank hc for conjuring up a fun filled agenda! i wouldn’t have celebrated it any other way. i was sooooooo happy to have my hubby and children by my side to bring in the big 4-0! as olive would say, “this is sooo ahhhhhmazing!”. i couldn’t agree more baby girl! cheers to a new decade!

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[crazy cousins]

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[loving her necklace]

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[macy’s on state]

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[chestnut room tree]

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[we put her down on the couch and her hair became electric!]

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[poor thing…i made her stand in front of every christmas tree. hahaha!]

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[i love christmastime]

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[she was like NO MORE PICTURES! eep]

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[so festive and fun]

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[so gangsta]

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[hotel living]

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[chillin’ and relaxin’ in our hotel room]

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[fancy kids meal]

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[back to the hotel room and ready for bed!]

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[dessert and wine delivered to the hotel room]

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[she was being so silly…she wanted me to take a picture of her with every.single.one. of her figurines]

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xoxo

happy five months ellie!

happy five months!

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[photos taken on 12.14]

oh baby girl…you are the best. i just looked at her one month pics and there is such a difference in her appearance. she was so scrawny at one month…and now she’s chunked out quite nicely. gosh, how i love her rolls!

she gave me more serious faces this time around. she was perfecting her model stare. she was so curious/intrigued on what i was doing with this big black contraption i was constantly shoving in her face. she kept studying me and i kept trying to make her laugh and the more silly i became, the more somber she appeared {she was probably thinking, what the heck is this lady doing?!}. hahaha!

this past month, we’ve hit a few millstones. last month i stated that she discovered her toes. well, she’s totally loving her toes now! she grabs them all the time and it’s just the cutest thing to see! she is also starting to roll to her side. she hash’t fully rolled over but she is getting there. she will roll to her side and then will lay there for a few minutes before she rolls to her back again. she loves to babble! i love listening to her ‘talk’. i always wonder what she is saying or thinking because she so darn animated with her sounds! i love that she now laughs; she did before – just a little bit then but now it’s full blown giggles! i am so in love with that sound. baby laughs are contagious!

she’s still eating at the same rate and schedule. when she’s with me, she typically feeds every two to three hours and she doesn’t really throw up anymore. only once in a blue moon will she puke but it’s so tame compared to when she was born up to the three/four month mark. that was brutal the first few months…she really tapered off closer to four months and that was pretty awesome when that happened. i felt like i was washing everything the first several months {that was sooooo taxing!} and it really sucked. it was like puke factory in our house {no thank you!} but now she just eats and burps. good girl!

she’s been taking a short nap in the morning around 10am and then a longer stretch in the afternoon. it’s starting to regulate just a bit but nothing solid yet. she is still going strong at night. she goes down between 9-10pm and she will usually wake up around 4/5am for a feeding, whereas she used to wake up at 3am for a feeding. she still drifts off to sleep after she feeds in the middle of the night and will sleep until 7-8am, if i am lucky!

she’s so happy and calm. oh we are so fortunate to have such a good little lady! she giggles, smiles, and just chills all the time. she cries out if she’s tired and that’s pretty much it. i love hanging out with her! i honestly miss her when i am not with her. she is so fun!

she is starting to love bath time. she’s grasping objects with force. her grip has gotten so strong! she’s been doing a great job holding her toys and playing with them. she loves to be held but she is soooooooo good at just laying around. sometimes you almost forget she’s in the room because she’s so quiet and calm for such a long time! of course, because she’s so good at laying around, the poor babe still has her bald spot in the back of her head…it’s baaaaad. like a huge patch of no hair. i can’t wait until she starts to sit so she hair can grow back!

overall, it’s been amazing. ellie is so sweet and such a wonderful blessing. i remembered, when i was pregnant with her, i constantly wondered what she would be like. i was a bit nervous that she might come out with a personality like the crazy, tough pregnancy that she was! oh, was i wrong. she is so calm, loving, giggly, and so darn sweet!

we love you so much baby girl! we are so darn lucky to have you in our lives!

xoxo

happy four months ellie!

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[pics taken on 11.15.16]

height: 24.25″

weight: 13 lbs 10 oz

this babe is the best. the best! she is just sooooo darn sweet, happy, chunky and fun! i love hanging out with her and seeing her beautiful face look at me with always a big smile!

it seems like the amount of milk she consumes has decreased, sadly. she still nurses every 2-3 hours when she’s with me. she has become so distracted and more interested in the environment around her than nursing. i now find that i have to feed her in a quiet room with minimal noise and no t.v. on. if olive is around, forget it! she wants to watch olive rather than feed and try not having your toddler in your face and not excitedly jumping, screaming around you! that’s the impossible! if i go into another room, this little gremlin will come find me! well, it is what it is…ellie is still chunking up quite nicely, so no complaints on those chubby thighs of hers or fatty cheeks!

she’s super solid with her night sleeping but not so much with her naps. i really think ellie sleeps less than everyone in this house! she typically goes down around 9-10pm and will wake up once {maybe twice during a growth spurt} for a feeding. sometimes she will wake at 3am or 5am…it depends on how’s she feeling and then again around 6am or 7am. i am hoping she breaks that one nightly feeding she is so strongly clinging on to. she nurses for maybe 5-7 minutes in the middle of the night and falls back asleep…so, i am like, “girl, why do you bother to eat…you can barely keep your eyes open?!!! haha!} so, she’ll sleep for 8-9 hours at nigt and maybe, maybe nap for 2-3 hours during the day. sometimes she doesn’t nap much at all. olive did and definitely sleeps more than this babe! it’s amazing how much ellie doesn’t sleep for a little baby but i am most thankful that she is quite the solid sleeper at night. no complaints here! as long as she keeps up those long nightly stretches, we are super happy in this house!

she is completely aware of her surroundings. she will lock eyes with me from across the room. she will perk up and coo when she hears my voice. she just started to giggle in the last few weeks and it’s the most darling sound i currently hear. she recently discovered her toes! she loves to grab at them! she loves to lay around and observe, she especially loves to look at olive. she can watch her for hours. plus, the sweet smiles that ellie gives is priceless! she loves to smile, smile, smile. she’s such a happy baby! seeing her beautiful grins completely brightens my mornings, days, and nights. i love this smiley babe so much!!

she’s been pretty true to size but oh is she chunky! i love her fat little cheeks and chubby, chubby thighs. those rolls get me every time. she’s balding in the back of her head and i blame it on the fact that i have a toddler and don’t hold ellie as much, so she is always laying on her back. olive didn’t get a bald spot because we held her allllllll the time! so poor ellie…she’s has a big circle patch of hairlessness going on back there.

she is such a happy, calm baby. i am soaking in every moment, every second of this baby stage. i can’t get enough. she’s so sweet, loving, precious, and oh so squeezable! i love holding her, nursing her, playing with her, and spending all my days with this darling babe. i love you to pieces oh baby ellie…you are such a light in my life.

xoxo

happy three months ellie!

happy three months!

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[pic taken on 10.15]

height: n/a

weight: n/a

oh ellie. she’s the sweetest little baby. we are seriously so blessed with this happy little babe. i will say it over and over again…i can’t believe it’s been three months already. they aren’t kidding when others tell you time with the second baby flies by!

she’s such a fabulous sleeper. now she is such a light sleeper…who does she gets it from? hmmmmm, my dad? hc’s mom? ’cause the both of us are NOT light sleepers. ok, well before the babies, i wasn’t but now i wake up at a sigh coming out of theses kid’s mouths! ellie will wake up at a creak in our floors and that is no bueno because our floors are so darn creaky! she’s solid at night though. she still wakes up at 5am for a quick feeding…and i mean quick. she might eat for 5 minutes and fall back asleep and sleep for another 2-3 hours. she sleeps for about 8-9 hours a night but her naps are sporadic. she might hit a four hour nap during the day or not nap much at all. it just depends on her mood, growth, and day.

she’s an eater still. she’s getting quite chunky for a skinny baby. she will still feed every two to three hours. i still try to pump every two hours to store away milk but she’s doing very well every few hours and she’s has gotten better with her regurgitation. she always lets out a juicy burp and then i expect her to puke right after. every time. her trend of late is to throw up about a half hour before she has to eat again. it’s like clockwork but now she doesn’t spew vomit like she did the first few months…she is a little more routine and regimented so i know when she’s about to puke. hahaha!

she is so active! she is a wiggle worm and can hold her head up like a champ. she can see further now and notices her mama, dada, olive, grandparents, etc. she is so sweet and smiley! when she wakes up in the morning or after her nap, she gives me the biggest smiles. it totally makes my day! she loves to coo, squeal, and shriek! it’s too cute to see her want to communicate and ‘talk’ back to me. i am waiting for her to roll and giggle but that hasn’t happen yet. i love watching her grow!

her hair is falling out a bit but her chunkiness is getting better. i love her leg rolls and chubby, chubby cheeks but her belly takes the cake. her double chin is the best and i love her cute, little pointy nose. she has the biggest belly! it’s ginormous! it’s like she has her head,legs, and arms attached to a watermelon tummy. hahaha!

she loves to watch olive and olive is so darn sweet to her. she is such a great big sister and is so gentle and thoughtful towards her. she always has to see her in the morning and say good morning. she will always let me know baby ellie is crying…even though i can hear her. ha! olive loves to show her her toys, she loves to help me change her diaper, and when olive is in the mood, she will totally entertain ellie by dancing, singing, or just being goofy to her.

i am still so amazed by her. i can’t believe we made such a sweet little baby girl. it blows my mind i have two darling little ladies. they are so sweet, cute, amazing, and precious! ellie is such a blessing…i can’t get over how much she is like hc. she looks like him, acts like him, and is chill like him. we lucked out to get such a calm loving little lady!

ellie, we love watching you grow and you are an amazing little baby. we love you sooooo much and can’t wait to see what milestones you will hit next month!

xoxo

renegade craft fair

for our 5th anniversary, i wanted to go to new york city. that was our plan. then we got pregnant and had a baby so nyc was out of the question, for now.

we planned a very simple evening out. hc’s parents so kindly offered to watch the kids for our anniversary night. we got ready and headed out the door…so excited for our alone time! i really wanted to hit up the renegade craft fair in wicker park. it was in our old hood and i love how it has sooooo many amazing vendors. plus, i told krissy, from earth cadets, that i would pay her a visit! {check out her shop, it’s local and full of awesomeness}

it was an absolute perfect day, just like our wedding day {our special day had temps in the mid seventies and it was a clear, sunny day}. we found a sweet parking spot, walked our way into the fair, nabbed a drink or three, and started to walk the fair. it was fabulous. we had such a great time drinking and perusing all the handmade goodies.

i know i say it all the time but i loooooooooove chicago. i love the city. i love the culture. i popped into krissy’s shop, found cute matching shirts for the girls and said hello to her! it was great seeing her and chitchatting for a bit before we finished up the fair.

we headed out to the restaurant {coast…where we had our third date} and scored another fab parking spot! we were seated right away {hc had made reservations}, ordered apps, and clinked our wine glasses in celebration of our marriage! as usual the food was amaze. i love coast because it’s exactly how sushi should be done! yummmmm.

we took our time, relaxed, and reveled in our time together with no kids! the funny but awful part of our evening out was that we were spent. oh my goodness. olive and ellie were sick and olive had a horrible night of sleeping, as in she hardly slept and either did we {ironic that it wasn’t our newborn who kept us up but our two year old!}! so when we finished our dinner…we were soooo ready to come home. hahaha! we were going to fall asleep!

nevertheless, it was quite an amazing day. hc made it so special and i am very thankful for his romantic notions. we completely enjoyed the craft fair, our dinner out, and had the most wonderful anniversary date night!

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[yesssssss, chicago cubs wine! hc bought this for our byob anniversary dinner]

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[our super, duper casual night out]

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[our old hood]

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[soooooo many awesome vendors]

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[two beers for hc and vodka lemonade for moi!]

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xoxo

anniversary morning

we had a very low key start to our anniversary day. it was calm, relaxing, and sweet. my hc is the best. he got up early to grab groceries for breakfast, let us sleep in, made me endless amounts of yummy coffee, and surprised me with beautiful flowers. i love him.

i can’t believe it’s been five years! what a milestone. i can’t believe it’s been five years since we had the best day everrrrrr! it feels like it just happened last week. wow, five years later, we now have two kids, a house, and so much more love around us. i feel so fortunate to be blessed with so much goodness, i feel like i need to pinch myself.

we’ve had our ups and downs like any relationship. we have had some awful fights. we have had high moments and tough ones. we have dealt with sick parents, the birth of our children, and so many obstacles and celebrations that have happened within the five years since we have said our i do’s. i couldn’t imagine another person to live this life with. to ride this wonderful journey of marriage with anyone other than hc. he is my rock. i might be stubborn, hot headed, and sometimes an ass but he is always there for me and i am truly thankful.

he teaches me to be patient, kind, loving, and appreciate the simple moments in life. i am very grateful for that because i sure need that in my life! he definitely balances me out. happy five years my love and cheers to many, many more wonderful happy years to come!

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[hc surprised me with flowers…as usual]

via tandeminlove.com[awesome lighting…a serene, quiet morning]

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[i love this babe]

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[olive chillin’ watching cartoons]

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[coffee…yummmm]

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[hc always cooking up something good]

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[loving her croissant]

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[croissant breakfast sandwiches]

xoxo

happy two months ellie

happy two months!

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[photos taken on 9.15]

height: 22.75″

weight: 10lbs 14oz

oh girl! you’re two months already?! where is the time going? you are growing up so fast! i can’t believe how different you are, already. be still my heart.

you’re sleep digressed a bit after one month but picked back up to a regular routine in the last two weeks. thank the Lord because we are so spoiled and i don’t think i could handle all those sleepless nights like other parents {olive was terrible the first four weeks and got into her routine after that!}. gah! you are solid throughout the night. you will pull in a good 6-8 hours straight! woo hoo! we try to keep you awake from 6 pm and on. we try really, really hard to get you to sleep by 10-11pm and you will be sound for the rest of the night. sometimes you will wake around 4, feed, and sleep until 7-8 o’clock. let’s pray that you continue to be so consistent every night until you’re an adult!

one thing i forgot to mention last month was the fact that you don’t like to be swaddled. probably from the second week here and on. you slept just fine & have ever since you were home, not being wrapped up all tight! i think we swaddled olive every night up to 4 months, hoping she’d stay fast asleep but you’re a rock star sleeper with not being wrapped up like a cocoon .

you pretty much eat every 2-3 hours still. i think i said this before but nursing the second time around is so different. you know so much more, you are more comfortable, you understand your body better, and i am so much more relaxed. i wish i could say that you stopped upchucking your milk but alas, that is still your thing. oh em gee. after you eat, it’s like…wait, wait, wait for it…puuuuuuuuke. there are days i hope i can catch it with the burp cloth and there are days where you are so stinkin’ sneaky and it throw it at me when i am not looking. i have never done so much laundry in my life. i change my clothes constantly, i change you constantly, and i always think i never have enough burp cloths. they are always drenched in milk and other fabulous body fluids. yuck.

you are starting to ‘talk’ back. it’s the cuuuuuutest thing! you recognize people, you perk up when you hear familiar voices, you smile at your mama alllllllll the time! i am so in love. i can’t even take it when you coo back and respond to me! it’s the best feeling in the world, it makes me so happy to see you growing! your smiles and facial expressions are so fun to watch and i can just stare at you for hours…well, actually i do. hahaha!

it means so much to her to have us around. if we leave her in her swing or dock a tot and walk away, it makes her very upset. she loves it when we are sitting right next to her, she loves it even more when she is by her sister. she loves looking and listening to olive. it makes you happy. ditto for olive…she is so in love, overprotective, and oh so sweet towards you. you love to be held, you love to be touched, and you love having your sweet little family right by your side. it’s so apparent in your reactions…i hope that is how you will always feel.

you have kept your hair, your double chin is out of this world, your cheeks have grown exponentially but it’s all not as big as your belly. your belly is so beyond ginormous! it’s sooooo stinkin’ cute! i love your little thigh rolls, your pointy little nose, and your sweet. sweet eyes. i try my best to soak in all your features, reactions, & sweetness because i don’t want to forget, take for granted, and miss out on all your baby goodness.

those moments are so so precious and that is truly what life is about right now. my family, the moments together, my girls, my husband, and life in the moment because you can’t take back that time and should savor every moment God has given to us. life is too beautiful to waste it.

happy two months my baby girl. it’s been the most fabulous two months since your debut and we are so blessed to have you here.

xoxo

happy 5th anniversary!

wow! i can’t believe it’s been five years since we’ve had our BEST day EVER! i say it every year and will always sing the same tune ~ our wedding day was seriously the best day. it’s the day where it all started. we professed our love, our unity, and commitment in front of God and kicked off our journey as husband and wife with a fabulous party!

i loved our wedding weekend. period. from the fun rehearsal dinner, to the most beautiful day ever, to a lovely morning brunch with everyone, and a farewell dinner at my parents before we ran off on our honeymoon.

i remember being so nervous that it was going to rain {darn weather forecast said rain all day for a freakin’ week before the wedding}. i prayed that it wouldn’t because we had planned so much for the outdoor space! i woke up bright and early on saturday and the weather app said bright, sunny, and a high of 73 degrees…holy cow! that started my wedding day out just right!

what ensued after that was nothing but goodness. our day was perfect. we were surrounded by so much love, happiness, friends, family, and fabulous electricity. i am so thankful we were able to celebrate our love the way we did. the wedding was so ‘us’ and the elation that you feel on this day is indescribable.

i am thankful for my husband…he is the love of my life and the most wonderful, patient, forgiving, and loving man. he is a wonderful father and the best partner and friend anyone could ask for. happy anniversary my love! cheers to 50 more years!

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[husband and wife!]

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[i love christian]

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[wedding program]

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[the best girls in my life]

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[first dance]

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and of course…our short, impactful, beautiful, fun wedding clip!!

{photos and 8mm film by kate headley}

xoxo

city folks

we were so excited to have aaron and olivia come out to visit! i always love my time with these two beautiful people. it’s always fun and entertaining.

they came over early afternoon for a late lunch. hc and i just came home from shopping and we bought a few good eats from our local grocery store and decided to make it a casual lunch.

as soon as they arrived, of course hc had to show off the new car to aaron and olivia went straight inside to say hello. i was running around, doing my typical br stuff, when she walked in. she greeted olive first and then i came running around the corner to let her know i was just putting stuff away and i would be right out.

we hung out in the kitchen and immediately started chatting up a storm. that’s a big connection between me and olivia…we talk like it’s going out of style. we can gab like there is not tomorrow. i love that about us, our friendship. of course we didn’t even notice how long the boys were gone or when they even came in, we were too engrossed in our conversations.

we offered them some tasty libations from our stash & olivia brought over champagne as a baby gift. that cracks me up. it’s sooooo olivia to give me champagne as a baby gift. i love her. i love how quirky she is in the most awesome way. her gift giving is always so unique and thoughtful. of course we had to pop it open and imbibe it! it was absolutely dry and delicious!

we served lunch, we sat around, we talked, laughed, and enjoyed our silly subjects that were grotesquely funny and very non pc…mainly coming from mr. aaron himself. his creative mind cracks me up!

anyhoo, their main purpose was to see baby ellie…well, that little nugget slept up until they left! the little baby woke up right when they were about to leave and we were able to squeeze in a quick crying pic before they walked out the door!

well, nevertheless, it was an amazing visit as usual. i love hanging out with these two! it was a lovely afternoon indeed!

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[my cheerleader pose]

via tandeminlove.com

[love these two]

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via tandeminlove.com

[nuts in a cup…]

via tandeminlove.com

via tandeminlove.com

[baby ellie was not a happy camper…she was HUNGRY, but we had to squeeze in a pic before they left!]

xoxo