0

To you, Savs…at 3 1/2

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

Savi Bear,

You have grown so much these past six months. In many ways you are a “big kid” now but I still get regular glimpses of my baby, especially when you snuggle up with us at bedtime.

You are the world’s greatest big sister! I mean, seriously. I knew you’d end up loving the baby but never imagined it would go this well right from the start. You are a little mommy and even refer to her as “my child” sometimes. You enjoy teaching her new things and get as excited when she hits a new milestone as we do. You monitor her behavior and if she’s getting herself into trouble – i.e. climbing the stairs! – you sound the alarm so we all come running.

That’s not to say you don’t have your moments where you might wish you were an only child again. You absolutely hate it when she touches the iPad during one of your shows or grabs at your food while you’re eating. You get upset if she steals your toys or pulls your hair. And forget about it if she breaks one of your many “rules.” You have Big Sister written all over you and I can already sense how you might start to get drunk with the power.

Meanwhile, your Belly Baby absolutely adores everything about you. She’d follow you to the ends of the earth and no one brings a smile to her face quite like you. I love watching you greet each other in the morning – you’re both so sweet and gentle with one another. And I long for the day when you can snuggle up in the same bed at night. I even daydream about the two of you sharing a room someday.

You’re also really growing into your own at school. You’ve transitioned into preschool 2 which has a more structured curriculum and you seem to be enjoying it. Your alphabet recognition is improving by the day and you love pointing out letters and telling us what words start with them. You take advantage of any opportunity to count or point out the primary colors. This age is so exciting because I can literally see your little brain growing by the day. You are soaking it all up and it’s been awesome.

You’ve been taking Spanish class for a while now as well and seem to really enjoy it. Especially because we have a trip to Costa Rica coming up. The idea of going to a country where everyone speaks Spanish all the time excites you and I hope you’ll be confident enough to practice what you’ve learned with the locals.

Socially, you are a little butterfly. You have found your place in the pecking order and remain best friends with your oldest classmates – Jacob and Kenna primarily. You’ve gone in and out of phases of playing with “girls only” but no matter what Jacob remains a constant in your life. In fact, you frequently refer to him as your “brother” and you two love to send each other video text messages when you’re apart.

I worry sometimes that you’ll get cliquey and we talk a lot about the importance of including ALL of your friends in your activities. Same goes with making your own decisions. I know you’re a leader and a strong-willed girl but sometimes you say things that make me wonder if you go along with the group too much. We try to stress values like kindness, compassion, and empathy and for the most part I think you get it. You made me really proud when some new kids joined your class last month and you decided to be their “special friend” until they adjusted. You have a very kind heart, always have, and I absolutely love to see it in action.

One of your favorite traditions is “talking about our day” every night. We go around and you ask us about our days and if we’re vague or rush through it because we’re tired, you always make us go back and fill in the gaps. You know the names of our bosses and our “friends” at work. We try to be honest with you and share our lows as well as our highs to give you some perspective. The other day, you cracked me up when you told me that you tried to hold a “meeting” at school but none of your friends wanted to come. Ah, baby girl, better get used to it because that’s corporate American in a nutshell.

You are also very transparent about how you spend your days. You love to tell us what you learned and who you played with and we know more about the playground politics at your school than we ever imagined possible. This dialogue is actually the best part of my day as well and I pray that you always enjoy talking and sharing with us the way you do right now.

You love to sleep and funny enough, in your own bed. Everyone worried you’d regress after Scarlett was born and we’d find you back in our bed but it didn’t happen even for a night. Of course, you love the occasional slumber party but you really do adore your own bed. You still nap – Thank God! – and I was told you had to be moved into a private space at school because some of the other kids wake you up and upset you. You are your mother’s girl!

You still love to read and play house. You bring a baby, purse or backpack everywhere you go and I’m fairly certain you’re going to grow up to be a hoarder. You take very good care of your babies and I think Belly Baby’s arrival came at the perfect time for this stage of your development.

You’re getting more independent and curious and the little girl who never strayed more than three feet from our side now likes to make new friends and explore further distances. This has forced us to step up our game in public and we no longer take for granted that you’re right next to us all the time. Although it means we have to keep a closer eye on you, I’ve enjoyed watching you venture out of your comfort zone a bit and you don’t claim to be so “shy” when faced with new situations as much anymore.

You are funny. I mean, really, really, funny and frequently leave all of us in stitches with your one liners. You mispronounce words all the time and make these incredibly observant statements. You also accidently curse or repeat inappropriate things we say and while I know we should immediately correct you, most of the time we just giggle under our breaths and ignore it. You love to act like a goofball and dance, sing and shake your booty all the time.

You remain a snuggle bug and always ask for “two more minutes” at bedtime. You love to curl up with any one of us, especially your sister, and rest your head on our chests while we read or chat.

One of the coolest things about the past six months is how you’ve embraced your faith. We’ve started going to church regularly and you look forward to “church school” all week. You love learning about Jesus, praying at night, and sharing the bible stories you learn. You often remind us that “Jesus is in our hearts” or that “God made a beautiful day today” and I just melt. I pray you continue your journey and that your spirituality only grows with age.

All in all, this age is awesome. We have our challenges and you can definitely act like a “threenager” but I also really enjoy how you’ve turned into my best buddy. We have great conversations and I enjoy your company as much as anyone’s. You are thoughtful and kind and just really fun to be around most of the time.

Savannah, you are loved beyond words. I stare at you while you sleep sometimes because I just can’t get enough of you. I’ve always had faith but when I watch you, I know with 100% certainty that God exists. There’s just no way someone as perfect as you was created by accident.

You are going to do amazing things, sweet girl. You already are. I wonder how you’re going to change this world and leave it a far better place than you found it and look forward to watching your story unfold. I see us in you – the lessons we’ve imparted and the genes you’ve inherited. You’ve managed to capture the very best of the two of us and so far, very few of our flaws. You have your idiosyncracies of course but they’re what make you unique and I, personally, adore them.

So go get, em, baby! You’ve got this and we’ll be right here behind you encouraging you on your way.

Loving you always and always,

Your mama

3 1/2 at a Glance

Cool Things You’re Doing: You love shake your booty and sing, “Boom Shaka Laka Boom” (I find this awesome. Your father, not so much). You are learning Spanish and also the letters of the alphabet.

Likes: You love your sissy first and foremost. You also really like animals and learning about exotic animals and where they live. You love our bedtime routine and make sure we never skip a step. You are obsessed with your “shows” on the iPad and I’ve embraced this habit while also trying to keep it under control. You love Mickey Mouse Clubhouse and eating berries equally. Your favorite colors are currently purple, pink and blue but mainly purple. You love school and your friends and tell us daily how much you “LOVE YOUR FAMILY!”

Dislikes: When I tell you to stop biting your nails (gross!), when we cut you off from the iPad, waking up in the morning. And I’d be lying if I said there weren’t times you just lost your mind for no good reason at all!

Favorite Books: The Day the Crayons Quit, your bible stories, Chicka Chicka Boom Boom, The Poky Little Puppy, Dr. Seuss books, and you love visiting the school library and checking books out!

Favorite Songs: Five Little Ducks, Skinamarink, Wagon Wheel, Coldplay, Home by Phillip Phillips, and of course the Hot Dog Song.

Our Favorite Things About This Age: There’s a lot. Watching you grow into your own person has been a joy. Seeing your kindness in action whether it’s with your sister, the spider on the windowsill, or your friends. Our conversations, your sense of humor, and your ability to sleep through anything!

Nicknames: Savs, Nana, Savi Bear, Monk, Monkey Brains, Savarina, Banana Face, Bug

Outtakes:

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

Advertisements
0

Dear Scarlett…at 9 months!

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

Scarletto Barbaretto,

You are nine months old. You’ve officially been on this earth for the same amount of time that you were inside of my belly. How the heck did that happen? Time is flying by at the speed of light and it’s breaking my heart a little with each passing day.

While I hate to see my infant disappear before my eyes, this stage – from nine months to 1 year – is actually my favorite. You are so full of life! And you are on the move! Every experience is a new adventure and your desire to “literally” dive right into the unknown has us dazzled. You are a courageous little bird, willing to try new things and open to all sorts of possibilities.

While your sister developed her verbal skills far before her physical ones, you are very mobile. You were crawling by eight months and now you’re standing steadily and starting to think about cruising. You have lovely form and can literally cross a room in less than 5 seconds. I think you spend so much time trying to keep up with your big sis and the older babies at school that you’ve become quite a speed demon.

You stood for the first time last week unassisted and we were both so excited and a little startled. As soon as you realized I let go, you dropped to your butt but then laughed hysterically as if you were saying, “Whoa…what the hell just happened there?”

Speaking of laughing, you do it all the time and it is like music to my ears. Just the sight of your sister sends you into hysterics. One of your favorite pastimes is taking a bath together. She helps wash you but mostly screams in your face and splashes water on you while you just crack up. The harder you laugh, the louder she gets. It’s pretty adorable to watch but also sends mommy running for a glass of wine and a bottle of Advil after a long day.

You babble a fair amount and have been doing a good job pairing your consonants and vowels. Still no identifiable words yet and I’m beginning to wonder what your first word is going to be. My money is on “Nana” after your sis but you may still pull out an old classic like Mama or Dada. You rarely cry but when you do, it’s because you are pissed. You get especially upset if we get distracted during meal time and there’s any delay in getting your food from the table to your mouth.

Food may be your favorite pastime right now. You absolutely love to eat and lately you seem to eat more per sitting than Savs. You dive right into all finger foods and are beginning to reject your bottles at school. I worried that you were starting to wean early but you’re more than content to nurse directly from the source. You just have no patience for the bottle. I’d say your favorite foods so far seem to be watermelon, chicken, beets and crackers.

You love to play with all toys but balls have to be your favorite. You enjoy hide and seek and have become quite a master at uncovering the hidden toy. You also do a great job passing toys back and forth with us and your friends at school. The ball pit remains your favorite spot in the classroom although I learned that you’re spending more time on the play structure lately. You love to climb up the stairs and crawl down the ramp.

All things considered, your sleep is pretty good. In fact, you go down like a dream. I nurse and rock you and then put you into your crib awake. Lately, you don’t even cry but just lay right down and pass out. You still wake up around midnight and we bring you into bed with us where you sleep and nurse on and off all night long. Lately though, you’ve been really restless in our bed and I’ve found myself putting you back into your crib after a few hours where you sleep peacefully for the rest of the night. This whole crib action is totally new to us since Savs never slept an hour in her room alone let alone most of the night. It’s a nice compromise though and I definitely find that we’re both getting a fair amount of sleep on most nights.

You’re cutting your upper teeth and you’ve also been battling a nasty double ear infection so your mood has been a little off this month. We’re actually consulting with an ENT in a couple of weeks to see about putting tubes in your ears since this is your third ear infection since January. No fun. Despite being in a ton of pain, you’ve been a trooper and spared us too many sleepless nights along the way.

All in all, you are as awesome as can be, Miss Scarlett. You love your little family and light up when you see us. Your brain is exploding with new knowledge and your personality is starting to shine through. I love seeing the ways that you are different from your sister and look forward to this opportunity that you’re giving us to grow as parents.

9 Months at a Glance

Weight: 19 lbs 6 ozs – 72nd percentile

Length: 27.5 inches – 45th percentile

Cool things You’re Doing: You crawl, stand, dance, and you are going to start scooting any day now. You fall asleep unassisted which is pretty cool as far as I’m concerned! You eat everything and love finger foods. You play hide and seek, and are an excellent problem solver.

Likes: You love your family, especially your big sister. You love to eat everything and would probably devour an entire steak if we let you. You like taking baths with Savs, snuggling with us, playing peek a boo, and playing with toys – especially balls!

Dislikes: You don’t like seeing us leave the room and you don’t like waking up and discovering you’re alone in your crib. You’re a wiggle worm and hate sitting still long enough for a diaper change and forget about having to wait at mealtime.

Nicknames: Scarletto Barbaretto, Letti, Letti Spaghetti, Happy, Monkey, Monk, Monkey Brains, Sissy, and of course, Belly Baby

Keep on trying new things. Soaring to high heights. And starting each day with a smile, baby girl. You are the best!

Love,

Your mama

Outtakes:

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

1

Dear Scarlett, at 4 months

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

Dear Scarlett,

This month has been all about transition and it’s throwing your mommy for an emotional loop!

You started daycare two weeks ago and while we had a few logistical snafus on day one – like I forgot all of your bottles! – you’ve handled your new normal like a champ. You love the other babies in your class and settle right into your caregivers’ laps. You’ve taken to the bottle really well and aside from some normal, post-feeding gassy episodes we didn’t have nearly the issues we had with your sister initially.

I didn’t return to work until last week and having that extra week to adjust to not being with you all day made the transition a lot easier. Of course, I miss and think of you and Savs constantly when I’m away from you but I also really enjoy taking off my “mommy hat” for a while each day. It feels good to stretch my brain again and I’m realizing how out of shape it got these last few months. I mean hours upon hours of Walking Dead and Californication reruns are not exactly intellectually stimulating!

You are growing huge, baby girl. You look like you’re closer to six months old and developmentally, you seem far older than four months. You are very strong with excellent head control and you’re already pulling yourself into a sitting position. You don’t love tummy time but we’re forcing you to work those back muscles as much as possible.

You are a happy girl and it’s very easy to make you laugh. Whenever your sister talks to you, your face lights up and a smile stretches from ear to ear. When I cover your mouth and cheeks with kisses or tickle your neck and legs, you crack up uncontrollably. Your laughter is contagious and before I know it we’re all giggling with delight because of you.

You and Lola are starting to bond. She loves licking the top of your head which is kind of gross but you seem to enjoy it so we let it go. Maybe it’s sort of like a scalp massage? We find her lying near you a lot and she seems to be as protective of you as she is of your big sis.

Unfortunately, you’ve battled your share of colds and then some in your short life. I guess it’s par for the course having an older sister and all but I don’t think being born right before flu season helped at all. I’m just thankful that we haven’t encountered anything too serious and we’re much calmer, less alarmist parents this time around which is good for all of us.

All in all, I think you’re going to be a pretty easy-going kid. Of course, I could be wrong but from what I see of your personality so far and the daily abuse you’re subjected to with an older sibling, you won’t have a choice but to learn how to let things roll of your shoulders easily. In fact, I opened the car door the other night only to find you sucking on Savannah’s dirty toes. She had stretched her foot from her car seat over to yours and like everything that comes into your line of sight, it went straight into your mouth. I scolded her immediately but she promptly justified her action by explaining that “you liked it.”

Ah…let’s just say, we’re learning to pick our battles.

Adjusting to life with two kids has gone better than I expected but I’m not going to lie, logistically it’s bananas sometimes. It seems your daddy and I never have enough arms to tend to all of your needs and somehow you know to start crying right when we’re putting Savannah into the bath or reading her bedtime stories. We definitely have to experiment until we find a good routine now that I’m back at work but like everything else, I have no doubt we’ll figure it out.

You still eat like a champ and I feel thankful every day that I don’t have to stress about your weight gain. You’re not sleeping in 7 hour stretches like you were a couple of months ago but I’m partially to blame for that. I find myself falling into the same trap I was in with Savannah where I nurse you laying down in the middle of the night. Inevitably, we both fall asleep while you’re still eating which doesn’t bother me in the least but you are growing quite content sleeping in the crook of my arm. Fast forward a couple of months and you’ll be sleeping the whole night in our bed. I’m not sure if I mind so much because those were some of my favorite memories with Savs but I also know that sleep training you is inevitable and it’s just a matter of deciding when we want to go through the torture.

They put you down awake for naps at school so I know you’re learning to self-soothe. You go to bed drowsy but awake in the cosleeper at home as well. With the transition to daycare, your doctor thinks we should just wait and see how the nighttime feedings are going over the next few weeks and she suspects you’ll be sleeping in longer stretches again soon. With you, I’m really trying to stress less and go with the flow more hence my laissez-faire attitude about the whole thing.

Your four month check up went great. You’re continuing to grow at record levels – remaining in the 50-60th percentile in weight and hovering around 95th in length. Like your sister, you’re going to be a tall girl I suspect! You’re a drool monster lately too so I’m guessing you’re teething. Hopefully, it won’t be too painful a process for you (or us!).

You remain a complete joy to be around and we fall more in-love with you each passing day. Thank you for continuing to take it easy on this mommy and for charming us with sweet smile on even the longest of days.

4 Months At A Glance

Weight: 14 lbs. 11 ozs. – 56th percentile

Length: 26 inches – 95th percentile

Cool Things You’re Doing: You rolled over! Also, your back is getting stronger by the minute and you are pulling yourself into a seated position. You are laughing, squealing, playing with toys, seeing further distances, and still charming the pants off everyone who meets you.

Likes: You’re still a hand/pacifier sucker. You also love stretching your legs out when we unwrap you from the swaddle after a long night’s rest. You enjoy watching your sister and the other kids at school and you are completely enamored by the mirror and television, you crazy girl! You also love the toys on your car seat and the new plush, tactile games that mommy’s work friends bought you.

Dislikes: Being interrupted before you’re done eating or left alone where you can’t see any of us.

Our Favorite Things About this Age: I will always love snuggling with you more than anything. You are also so damn cute when you offer that gummy smile which is pretty much all the time. I love that you sleep and eat well and that you are really starting to engage with us!

Nicknames: Belly Baby, Scarletto Barbaretto, HAPPY!, Letti, Letti Lou, Letti Spaghetti, Scarlett Johansson, Baby Girl

Love, love loving you!

Your mama

Outtakes:

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

0

To you…at 35-38 Weeks

35 Weeks Final

Photo credit: Leigh Castelli Photography

Dear my sweet Belly Baby:

You have become so very, very real in our lives as of late. In the last month you have gone from a presence we were looking forward to meeting in the near future to one that may enter our lives at any moment.

It’s so hard to capture all of the emotions I’m feeling as we countdown to your birthing day but I’m going to do my very best because I know when it’s all over I’ll be hard pressed to remember exactly how I feel right now. At least, that’s the way it’s been with Savannah.

To be honest, I fluctuate between feelings of quiet anticipation and a total desperation for “just a few more days” before our big meeting. I’d be lying if I said I wasn’t scared to see how your addition into our lives is going to change everything. My rational side knows it will all change for the better but there’s still a part of me that fears how our relationship with Savannah will be affected in the process. She’s been an only child for 2 years and 8 months now and we’ve poured every bit of ourselves into her during that time. All of my friends reassure me that my heart will grow the second I meet you and I know they’re right because I watched them overcome the same fears. Still, I just can’t imagine how that’s humanly possible since she currently consumes every part of me.

The funny thing is, I know Savannah is going to process this transition just fine. She’s thrilled to be a big sister and even more thrilled to meet and love on you. It’s me I’m worried about. I know that the minute you are born I will be lost in a haze of newborn ether. You will become my world and I will walk around telling everyone the same thing I did with Savs in those first months – we share a heart, there’s just no two ways about it. I fear that during that period I will lose all sense of myself and forget that I am actually a mommy to two precious gifts now; two beautiful souls that need all of me in a way that I can’t imagine. Again, I know I’m being crazy but if I’m honest with myself then I’ll admit this is exactly how I’m feeling right now.

I’ve been sleeping with Savannah a lot this week. I tell your Daddy it’s because I can’t sleep and don’t want to wake him up. But in reality, I just want to soak her up for as long as I can. She wraps her arms and legs around me in her sleep and snuggles her head under the crook of my arm. I just lay there in the middle of the night breathing her in and praying for an endless supply of these moments in the days/years to come.

I’m pretty sure I’m going crazy and I’m just going to chalk it all up to pregnancy hormones flowing through an overly emotional woman to begin with. I mean I bawled while watching Dirty Dancing for the 1000th time the other day. Come on!

Meanwhile, you are growing so strong. You twist and turn inside of me and doing summersaults in the middle of the night is definitely your favorite pastime. You’ve been head down and in position for some time now and I’m officially getting kicks to the ribs which I remember so fondly from those last days with your sister.

You have put more of a strain on my back than my first pregnancy and I’m battling a mean case of sciatica down my left side. The only relief is a warm bath, heating pad and laying down and fortunately, I’m on maternity leave now so I can’t make any excuses not to do exactly that. I’ve been going stir crazy all week because sitting still just isn’t in my DNA but there really isn’t much left to do to prepare for your arrival. Our bags are packed and ready to go, your room is set up perfectly, cloth diapers washed and ready, and the car seats are installed.

The general consensus is still that you’re a boy although something inside of me insists that a little girl is growing in there. Either way, we are patiently anticipating that moment that Dr. James announces, “It’s a …!” Boy or girl, you are going to complete our little family in a way we never could’ve imagined.

This may or may not be the last letter I write before meeting you. Just know that you are so loved already and that there is a big, beautiful world waiting to greet you. Your Daddy and I promise to protect you as go, give you space to grow, encourage you to venture out, and provide a safe space to land when you fall.

We share a heart.

Loving you always,

Your Mama

35 Weeks – Pregnancy #1

IMG_1948-1

And more from my maternity photo shoot:

IMG_5948 LCP_0226 LCP_0252 LCP_0254 LCP_0230

 

1

To you…at 32-34 weeks.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

Dear Belly Baby,

You are so close to meeting your family! Can you believe it? We are getting more and more excited with each day and week that passes and just know that you’re going to be here before we know it.

My body has been undergoing tremendous changes these past few weeks. Not only has my belly multiplied in size many times over but I’m starting to feel the weight gain in my back, hips, and pelvis. Everyone says I’m carrying you much more out front than I did Savannah which could explain the pressure I’m feeling in my lower back. Plus, this is about the time that my hips and pelvic bones are supposed to start spreading in preparation for your birth and I can certainly feel that activity taking place.

This pregnancy has been so similar and yet so different from my first. Sometimes I’m unsure if I just don’t remember all of the nuances or if I’m really experiencing them differently. I do know that by now, I was going to the bathroom at least five times a night with Savannah. With you, I only seem to get up about three times which is good because getting out of bed has become incredibly painful. I’m suspecting I have symphysis pubic dysfunction this time around although I haven’t checked with the doctor to confirm. It’s nothing serious and just means my ligaments in my nether regions are becoming a little too relaxed and stretchy which makes them hurt like hell. I vaguely remember the feeling of being kicked in the groin with Savs but this is much more severe. Once I’m up and moving it seems to go away for the most part so I can’t complain too much but it has made sleep uncomfortable.

Sleep…ah, such a long forgotten pleasure. Between the SPD pain, the tossing and turning, constant need to pee and the crazy dreams I haven’t slept well in months. In fact, I don’t actually remember the last time I went to bed and didn’t wake up until my alarm went off at 6 am. Crazy! After going down this road before, I know this is all preparing me for life with a newborn but I must say, it’s almost harder during pregnancy because I don’t have the cute little baby to snuggle in the middle of the night. I am definitely looking forward to sleeping on my back and stomach again and to dreamless nights.

Now that I’m done complaining, I can let you know all of the exciting things taking place in preparation for your arrival. There have been lots of baby sprinkles this month. Your Nona threw one for me with the family, your God and Auntie Kim threw one with my closest girlfriends and even my awesome colleagues at work surprised me with a little shower. You are already spoiled rotten which isn’t easy to do when it’s baby #2 and we don’t know the gender! Still, you’ve gotten some pretty adorable clothes, lots of accessories and gift cards galore. Most importantly, you have a whole network of people dying to meet you and love on you.

In addition to the parties, we’ve made some good progress on your nest. I’ve been shopping and crafting so your wall hangings are coming along. Your poppy spent two days painting – in the middle of a crazy heat wave, I might add – and the color scheme in your room is awesome. And your Nona’s been helping us arrange your furniture so it’s both feng shui and functional. Of course, Savannah’s helped by breaking in your new rocker and reading all of your books. I hope to put most of the finishing touches on it this weekend and then it’s just a matter of time until it’s all yours.

Most of all, we’ve been preparing both mentally and emotionally for your arrival. Your dad and I talk a lot about how life is going to change when you get here – don’t worry, we did the same thing before Savannah was born. It’s hard to believe we’ll find the time in the day to be the dedicated parents we hope to be to two love bugs and a furbaby but just like everything in life, I know it’ll work out. We’ve also been talking to your sister about her new role as a big sister. We got a great book called Waiting for Baby which she loves reading and imagining herself as the main character. She is very affectionate with my belly and is adamant that we refer to her as a Big Girl rather than a baby now. As I’ve said all along, there are going to be growing pains but I can’t imagine a kid better suited to be an older sibling than our Savs. You are so lucky to have her pave the way for you, munchkin.

Your dad and I snuck off to La Jolla for a little babymoon last weekend. We talked a lot about your name – still no final verdict but the list is shrinking, tried to imagine what your birth day will be like and how it’ll be similar and different from Savannah’s, and shared our hopes and dreams for our kids and our family. As always, it was so nice to spend that time with him and reflect on how far we’ve come as a couple and discuss all of our plans for the future.

You are still an active little bean and we love watching you roll around in my belly at night. You are in position now which is always reassuring at this point in pregnancy. My fibroid is still manageable and the doctors don’t expect it’ll present any complications during birth. All in all, we’re as prepared as we can be. I have my pre-baby checklist that I’m slowly working my way through but I’m not nervous about getting everything done before you arrive. It’ll all work itself out!

I have 2.5 more weeks of work and then maternity leave kicks in and I’m very ready for the break. I’ll be home for 4.5 months – exactly what I did with Savs. It’s the perfect about of time to bond with you without feeling robbed of the beauty and chaos of the “early days.” With Savs, I felt ready to return to work by the end and knew she was at a good point to start daycare. I’m hoping the same is true this time around.

You are such a gift already and now that we’re exactly one month out from your due date I can barely contain my anticipation. Keep growing healthy and strong, know you are loved already, and prepare for a life that is as beautiful as we can make it.

Loving you always,

Your mama

34 weeks – pregnancy #1

34-2

1

Weekend in review – part 3 – along came Sunday.

Oh, what a lucky girl I am!

I had the pleasure of spending a whole entire evening with my BFF’s – the girls from 524 Rosecrans – and their husbands. We floated the afternoon away on the lake, clinked champagne glasses in celebration, shotgunned a beer for old times sake (whose idea was that anyway?), feasted on delicious BBQ, danced to songs that haven’t been played since iPods were created (Sexy Noises anyone?), and ended the night watching people make fools out of themselves singing karaoke at the best dive bar in town.

At one point, Steph leaned over and said, “I love my friends” and believe it or not, I was just looking around the room thinking the very same thing! There’s something that comes with friendship that has lasted decades. I don’t know if it’s familiarity, history, or a confidence that no matter what you do or say, you won’t be judged – maybe it’s all of the above. We love each other for our strengths and weaknesses. We accept each other for being human and we share an honest regard for each other’s happiness that I haven’t experienced before.

Every time we all get around the same table I leave feeling a little sad that it doesn’t happen nearly enough but hopeful that the day will come when we’re all living in the same region and can be a more consistent part of each other’s daily lives – you know, where we don’t have to rely on weekly phone calls and emails! I love that our husbands our friends and that they so perfectly understand each of our roles in the group and never ever try to change that dynamic. I love that those of us who are single, unemployed, or waiting patiently for life to take them on a new adventure, trust that they have four others who are in their corner, rooting for their success and happiness, no matter what lies ahead.

I love everything about us. Sweet, beautiful us.