A Sweet September

I wanted to wait to write an update until I had something deeper to say than “here’s a bunch of cute and funny photos of my kids, plus a comment or two that I think is witty” but at the rate my brain is going (or NOT going,) that means you won’t hear from me until Christmas.  So, indulge me in another “life lately”-style post!

I recapped the highlight of our Disney trip in my last post.  Not covered in that post was the next day when, thanks to wrong directions from resort concierges and staff, I spent several hours roaming around three Disney resorts with the girls looking for what I had been told was an “amazing playground.”  We never found this mystical place, but we DID get to ride three buses, two boats, walk approximately 3 miles, and experience the excitement of being stranded in a remote area of a wilderness campground for an hour—all in 90 degree weather.  At each stop of our incredible journey, I had to break down the stroller (and infant car seat!) and take the two girls, our diaper bag, and the Ergo safely on and off of the mode of transportation by myself because apparently the staff can’t help (“lawsuits,” they explained, as if this single word could make me understand why they stood there watching as I struggled with 75 lbs of people and things.)  Ahh, the happiest place on earth!

This campground selfie sums up the trip nicely:

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“Just a fun day with the gir–AAKKKK!”
Guess I don’t have to worry about when to expose Riley to peanut butter anymore…

On the plus side, I realized that if I could live through this experience, I could probably handle taking both girls shopping, so we’re a bit more functional these days.

Let’s see…other updates…

Riley has woken up to the world, and man, is she pretty!!

IMG_3329Don’t mind the Harry Potter-style scrape on her head…I’m calling her “The Baby Who Lived (No Thanks to Zoe)”

She has started batting at toys, tracking really well with her eyes, smiling in response to our faces, cooing, and kicking her playmat piano like it’s her job.

IMG_3199It’s apparently Zoe’s job too.  Every day she’s hustlin…

IMG_3335Riley’s all, “seriously, Mom?? I thought that thing was supposed to be for ME.”

Riley remains peaceful and happy—basically, a dream baby.  She’s been out of newborn clothes for three weeks, which is so funny to me since Zoe was so shrimpy.  We have her 2 month appointment this week and I’m very curious to see how much she weighs!

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On a related note, Zoe is 25 lbs now.  I’m pretty sure 3 lbs of it are hair.  Check out this recent post-nap hair:

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My dad, mom, and teenage siblings vacationed at a nearby beach over Labor Day weekend. We didn’t want to subject the family to our nighttime wake ups, so we commuted back and forth every day for a few days.  It was so much fun! My parents made sure that I got a little “vacation” myself—I got to go paddle boarding twice, didn’t have to cook for a few days, and my dad watched Zoe during her nap times so that I could take Riley to the resort Starbucks and cuddle with her (one-on-one time with her is so precious to me.  As are iced soy lattes.)

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Like a true Florida baby, Riley was in the ocean at 6 weeks old.  She totally kicked back and relaxed.

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1.5 week later, Aunt Kelsey came for a visit to meet Riley.  All parties enjoyed her visit and craved her attention, as evidenced by this darling photo collage (click to enlarge.)

Aunt Kelsey collage

She was a HUGE help in practicing my routine with the two girls, cooked us a few freezer meals, babysat Riley so I could get some one-on-one time with Zoe, and even encouraged David and I to sneak out for two date nights while she was here.  Since she left, Zoe has continued to thank God for “Ke-sey” before bed every night.  It is so sweet to watch my girls fall in love with my family.

IMG_3410Some personal updates: I am LOVING work right now.  I don’t talk a ton about work here, but right now I’m teaching an undergraduate public health writing class and am really enjoying watching my students engage with each other and our course content.  Public health writing is equal parts formula and craft, so there actually is a lot to teach and finesse even at the undergraduate level.  It’s fun to give thoughtful feedback to my students and watch them apply it, and to encourage and coach them in their career aspirations.  I’m also writing two grants a month for a local nonprofit through a grant writing business that I’m a part of, and just wrapped up the last part of my last summer consulting project, which involved training the staff of a local nonprofit on a 3-5 year evaluation plan that I created for them after working with them to help them define their desired impact.  I work on Mondays from 9-1, during nap times (the girls are coordinating their naps most days right now which is fantastic,) and as needed on weekends and early mornings.  It’s not too much, I love it, and I get to spend the majority of my week with the girls.

IMG_3381I’m feeling a lot more comfortable with both girls now and feel God’s goodness every day as He somehow equips me to do and enjoy my day.  I definitely don’t shower or cook from scratch as much as I used to, but I’m in a good groove otherwise.  There’s always clean laundry in our drawers (or at least in a hamper somewhere,) I can take the girls most places without having to over think it, we’re sleeping better as Riley is down to one nighttime wakeup most nights, and I’ve gotten back into exercising again  (I wasn’t starting from scratch, but it felt like it—my kudos to anyone who has recently started an exercise routine.  I had to legitimately pray and coach myself through some of those initial workouts!)

My goals for the next month is to keep that routine going, to eat real lunches (that hasn’t been happening lately, but I know that continuing to get back into an exercise routine will help my appetite get more regulated again,) to have two date nights with David, and to deep clean my house 1x.  (I know, aim big!!) I also want to keep having regular “quiet times”—whatever that needs to look like in my day 🙂

Photo on 7-28-14 at 6.45 AM #2I am also back volunteering with our youth group girls, thanks to some youth group moms who are making themselves available to watch the girls each week.  The support our church family gives us is unreal and we’re so thankful.  I am excited for the year ahead with my high school girls.

I will close with some gratuitous adorable pics, because I live for excess!

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2 thoughts on “A Sweet September

  1. First off, your girls are BEAUTIFUL!!!

    Second of all, you are ROCKING it. Seriously. Camille is 8 months and I hardly cook. Much less cook from scratch! Ha!

    Third, I am super impressed that you are able to juggle work. I just (as of a few weeks ago) decided that I cannot do it all. I resigned from work and my last day is 10-17. This was a hard decision for me, as I truly love what I do and my coworkers, but it was just causing too much emotional stress and craziness trying to actually get the work done at home. Sigh. I have felt God nudging me for a while to give it up, and stubbornly JUST now decided to listen to Him. 🙂 I feel like God has a unique role for me in this special needs world (Clara’s advocate. . . this takes up WAY more time than most people realize) so I am excited to see where He leads!!

    • Brittnie,
      God has given you the gift of Clara, and you are responding with an open heart. You inspire me! It sounds like you have chosen the wiser thing…and you will be blessed for your obedience.

      (Also, when I say I used to “cook from scratch,” let’s be honest…I wasn’t making my own pasta or anything…I was just cooking from recipes instead of using a boxed mix salad or free styling it with like 3 ingredients and calling it “dinner” like I’m doing now. Haha. Although last week’s potato and egg dinner was pretty good! )

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