Thursday, October 19, 2017

Big Girl Dates

Last weekend we took Reaghan to see her first play! A couple years ago I probably would've said it would be a little ridiculous to take a 3 year old to a play. Even as I type that I think it sounds crazy, a 3 years old at a Broadway "type" play?! But I'm so glad we went. Reaghan and her cousin Brooklyn are really into Lion King right now, it is one of their favorite movies, So when we saw through our zoo membership that the Hurrah Players {a family theater group based in Hampton Roads}were putting on this play and we could get a discount on tickets with our zoo passes, we thought it would be fun to take them!

We've been trying to have special "big girl dates" with Reaghan every now and then since Lilly was born. Usually it is a daddy daughter date somewhere... sometimes its spending special one on one time with mommy to do nails or crafts... more recently I took her to the movies just the two of us and we had a fun little girls night! Anyways, this was an extra special big girl date because it was with mommy AND daddy while Lilly stayed home with Uncle Noah. :)

Friday, October 13, 2017

Apple Orchard {2017}


We took our annual fall trip to the mountains to pick apples this past week! It is definitely a trip I look forward to every year and this year was our first time with Lilly. Every time I go on vacation I remember how un-vacation like it is with little kids, BUT at the same time, how much fun it is. I mean, what did I do on this trip before I had babies to take care of??? Yes it would be more relaxing if it were just Mark and I, but it would seem a little meaningless...

We both took more time off of work this year. Usually we only go up for a long weekend, but we stayed for 5 days this time. There is always so much to do, we are busy every day!

Saturday: Our week this year fell earlier in October than usual so we were up there for our favorite craft festival - Dayton Days. I bought homemade bibs, a cute dance bag for Reag for Christmas, and bows! We ate fried apple pies and funnel cakes! Kind of bummed that it was 80 degrees out and we didn't have crisp, chilly air.





Wednesday, October 4, 2017

See Lilly Grow {8 months}


I love my little 8 month old. She is fun and feisty and fearless. She's our go with the flow girl. I'm a little in denial that its been 8 months since she was born, but I'm super excited for this new season. We had a fun first summer with her and now we're heading into fall and the holidays! 

Thursday, September 28, 2017

Moana Birthday Party

As I mentioned in my last post about all that Reaghan loves at 3 years of age, she L O V E S Moana.

Have you seen it? Reaghan was hooked after the first time she watched it and I actually enjoy it too. Which if you know me isn't that surprising because I love me some Disney movies. We listen to the songs on repeat pretty regularly and are actually headed to our local Zoo tomorrow evening because they are showing Moana on their outside screen! SO of course Reaghan's birthday had to have a Moana theme.

Do you do themed birthdays? We've kept Reaghan's parties family only up to this point, and probably will until she's 5 or so, but we still enjoy having a little theme to go along with it. Someone was selling some pretty intense Moana decorations on our facebook yard sale site (complete with a boat made out of pallets that had a sail!) that were super adorable but I realized that would be going overboard a bit. We did buy some Moana balloons, plates and napkins and then just used some dollar tree table cloths and streamers and a bouquet of carnations from the grocery store. A friend made some killer cupcakes and I had fun creating a super easy Moana cake. (That looked better than it tasted... thank goodness for the baker friends cupcakes!) I think its fun to see Reaghan excited about the decorations that we put up for her birthday. I love that it makes her day special and memorable. She is still enjoying her Moana balloons almost 2 weeks later so it was worth the money spent. : )


Our 3 year old excited for her party! 

Saturday, September 23, 2017

See Reaghan Grow! {3 years}



How is this girl 3 years old?!

Our Reaghan Eileen had her birthday last weekend! We had a fun, family "Moana" party {that I'll share in a different post} on her birthday and she loved it. We had been marking off the days on her calendar that led up to her birthday and it was cute to see the anticipation building in her little mind.

Nothing makes me more sentimental than thinking about my first born growing up. Gahhh, it gets me every time. Google photos made a video today that put together all the videos we've taken of Reaghan since her second birthday until now and I couldn't believe how much she's grown. I was proud of myself for watching the whole video without crying, I could feel the tears coming on but I held them at bay!

Here are some stats on our big girl in her 3rd year, some of the milestones she reached this past year, some of her favorite things and some things that make her unique:

Wednesday, September 6, 2017

See Lilly Grow! {7 Months}

The 3rd of the month has come and gone and with it another month of Lilly growing and learning and loving life. We spent her 7 month birthday shopping together at the new Premium Outlets together as a family. She does a lot of things that we will definitely hold over her head when she's older ;) but she brings so much joy to our family. We love watching her personality develop and seeing a baby reach milestones and discover new things never gets old!


Size
No official stats this month but I don't think she's grown a ton sine last month. She's still fitting in most of the same clothes. 6 months and 6-9 months. A few 9 month things seem to be a little long for her. She's definitely got some rolls on her though!

Health
This sweet baby has been in good health for most of her sweet life so far. I am so grateful.

Feeding
This girl L.O.V.E.'s to eat. She eats anything I am willing to give her. She's eating a variety of baby foods. Mashed avocado, mashed banana's and apple sauce are a couple of her favorites. She's tasted peanut butter a few times with out reactions. She loves to "chew" on baby teething wafers and graham crackers. She can't quite figure out how to pick up the little puff snacks and get it in to her mouth but she's working on it. She's also working on her technique for using a sippy cup. She's figured out how to suck out of a baby food pouch and a straw. If she see's anyone eating anything, she wants to try it! She doesn't even make sour faces when tasting pickles or lemons. I admit I'm a little more relaxed about letting her taste things like cake and ice cream than I was with Reaghan. Not that I'm letting her eat it every day, but a taste here and there isn't going to hurt her.

Sleeping
She's had an awful sleep regression this last month. She waked up every night sometime around 3-4am and cries and cries until I feed her. Currently the plan is let her fuss for 10 minutes, go in pat her back and give her her paci and walk out. Unfortunately this cycle can go on for over an hour and I usually end up feeding her because once she's fed she goes right back to sleep and even sleeps in past 8. Soooo I'm conflicted on whether to teach her that she can make it through the night without eating or give in and feed her for the sake of sleep but thereby perpetuating her wanting to eat at night. *sigh* Sometimes she doesn't nap in the morning... which is a little bit challenging because I can't put her down before 1:30 so she sleeps for Mark while I'm at work. If she doesn't nap by a certain time in the a.m. I can't put her down at all until 1:30 and she can get pretty fussy when that happens. Her afternoon naps are always long though, 2 hours minimum.

Likes
She likes to play with all of big sissy's toys. She likes to be tickled and loves peek-a-boo. She likes to watch "baby bum" on youtube. She loves bath time. She loves people and loves to smile. She has the most adorable expressions. She loves to touch people's faces. Loves to grab for anything and everything thats within her reach. Likes to watch Piper run around.

Dislikes
She doesn't like to sit still. She doesn't like to fall asleep if there is a lot going on because she's a little socialite. She doesn't like to be told no, like when she keeps trying to climb out of her tub seat and I make her sit still! 

Milestones
She's been working on crawling for the last several weeks and finally put it together on Labor Day! She'll also roll herself around to get where she wants to go. She can go from her belly to sitting all on her own. She responds to her name. She is finally riding quietly in the car now that I put her car seat in the middle close to Reaghan, she actually falls asleep now! She isn't babbling any real words or sounds yet. She basically just likes to shriek and squeal.



Sibling Love
Reaghan is not a fan when Lilly tries to get her puzzles or put her toys in her mouth. She likes to decide what toys Lilly can play with. She is a big help to me when I ask her to "keep Lilly company" while I do a quick chore. One day this month we were out back playing and I had put Lilly in the swing,.. I walked away to get something and a few moments later heard laughing, I turned around to see Reaghan pushing Lilly in the swing and they were giggling to each other. It was precious.

Special Events/Outings
She napped through a solar eclipse! Came to see sissy at VBS a couple nights and also stayed home and bonded with daddy on other nights, She no longer screams for him while I'm in the shower or at work. haha We went to Grammies first MACU volleyball game and Aunt Sara's first volleyball game of her senior year. Lilly loved both and was very vocal for both. She visited the Zoo for the first time and was a content little baby in the stroller.




Friday, September 1, 2017

Dance Class

We are entering uncharted territory this fall with Reaghan...

We've signed her up for dance class! We are entering into the world of organized activities with our kids. The world where you have to get them to a certain place every week, buy them certain items to participate in said activity and cheer them on as they grow and learn. All summer we were talking about signing her up for something this fall and we were trying to decide between soccer and dance. She loves to run and kick the ball (a girl after her mama's own heart!) but soccer meant games every Saturday... usually early games... SO we totally made a selfish decision and chose dance instead! haha We figure we have YEARS ahead of us of getting up early on Saturday mornings for sporting events so why not postpone it at least another year? Lucky for us, Reaghan is also really into wearing tutu's, twirling around, and doing anything that makes her feel like a princess. (This part of her is definitely not after her mama, but I'm completely on board with loving and promoting all princess activities in this house.)

Choosing dance worked out for us in the end because my sister in law also wanted to sign her little girl up for dance so now Reaghan will be taking taking ballet and tap with her cousin Brooklyn every Thursday night.

Their studio had an open house last week so we took the girls to meet their teacher and get fitted for their ballet and tap shoes.


A couple days before I had found adorable leotards and dance shirts on sale at Old Navy so of course I had to get them for her. (Also those sandals were on sale for $5! I wish I had a pair.)


Unfortunately at the open house I learned that they can only wear black leotards and pink tights to class, but they can wear any kind of tutu or skirt over it. *face palm* so I returned all of the leotards back to Old Navy. First lesson of putting your children in organized activities - don't buy anything until you know for sure what the need! haha

Reaghan has a very timid personality so I'm eager to see how she does and I think this will be a good opportunity for her to grow. She'll be in the class by herself while I sit in the waiting area and she doesn't have much experience with that since she stays home with me. I think having Brooklyn there with her will help her be less nervous.


On the way home from the open house we stopped and got ourselves a little end of summer treat.
Reaghan experienced m&m blizzards for the first time this year and she loves them!

Classes officially start on September 14th so I'll let you know how it goes!



Saturday, August 12, 2017

See Lilly Grow! {6 Months}

Lilly Pop is 6 months old!! How has 1/2 a year gone by since she joined our family? Some days life with 2 littles is tiring, frustrating and overwhelming. I don't think I've gone to bed before midnight since Lilly was born. Some days we run like a well oiled machine and everyone naps and sleeps through the night and eats nutritious meals at appropriate times. 

 Lilly has definitely given us a run for our money in lots of areas. She's needy and fussy. She spits up every hour of her life all over us and the house. She can make your ears ring with her screams when she gets mad and I don't even remember what a quiet car ride is like. BUT her smile is the sweetest, her laugh is contagious and her cuddles are so soothing. I believe that she's going to grow up to feel things deeply. Her emotions will run deep and I'm willing to bet that so will her will. (I mean, she has persisted in screaming in the car for the last 6 months, she won't quit!)



Size
She had her 6 months check up and weighed 16 pounds 13 oz. She was 60th percentile for weight but only 37th for height! Short and stocky : ) She wears size 3 diapers and is in 6 month and 6-9 month clothes.  

Health
She took her first trip to Urgent Care one Friday night for.... wait for it... absolutely nothing. Whomp whomp whomp... I thought maybe she had an ear infection because she had had a cold and after her little cold disappeared she got unusually fussy and didn't sleep for 5 days straight! Tylenol wasn't making much of a difference so I was afraid something else was going on...  I sat with her at an Urgent Care for 2 hours where she screamed her head off while they flushed her ears to see the ear drum better only to tell us they looked fine. *face palm* Apparently she was just on a sleeping strike. **I looked back at Reaghan's 6 month update and apparently she had the same sleeping strike around this time too! Next time I'll remember that not sleeping/fussiness around this time is just a growth spurt and I won't go to the Doctors. haha**

Feeding
She is eating solid foods! She was totally unimpressed with rice cereal. She was really excited to taste it but you could tell she was underwhelmed once she ate it haha. She was way more into sweet potatoes a week later. So far she has had sweet potatoes, squash, carrots, green beans and peas. Loves the potatoes and carrots, tolerates green beans and squash but actually gags on the peas and refuses to eat them. It's hilarious! I'm going to keep making her eat them because I don't want another eater like Reaghan! She's getting solid foods every night for dinner and I'm trying to work in lunches for her too, but sometimes I just forget! Breastfeeding is more spread out now, usually every 4 hours now.

Sleeping
Other than that one week of waking every hour for no apparent reason. (She must've been going through a growth spurt or something) she is sleeping through the night! Yay for more sleep! Bed time is usually between 8:30-9 and she wakes up between 6-7. Most morning she eats and then falls right back to sleep for another hour or 2!

Likes
Her teething toys, especially the little rubber banana and corn toothbrush. Likes toys that make sound. Laughs at her big sissy when she jumps around. Still loves to be held and entertained, likes it when you talk to her! She will be content as long as someone is holding her. She does like her exersaucer now and that buys me about 10 minutes to get things done. Enjoys bath time with big sissy. Likes to give big open mouth kisses all over peoples face. Blows raspberries on my shoulders. Easily smiles at anyone that talks to her.  

Dislikes
The car saga continues.... I think its slowly improving. Like instead of screaming 99.9% of the time we get in the car its only 89.5% of the time and sometimes only 2/3's of the ride. She doesn't like to be alone! She throws a fit when I walk through a room and don't pick her up. I try to be sneaky sometimes so she can't see me. She doesn't like being in the ergo carrier anymore because she can't see and she's too little to face out yet. (SO I'm back to online grocery shopping.) 

Milestones
She is growing so fast! This past month she started pushing herself up into a little baby plank position on her arms and toes and now she can get herself into a quadruped position and rock back and forth. She hasn't figured out how to move her arms yet so she either flops forward or scoots herself backwards. She finally figured out the sitting up thing just days before turning 6 months, but I still have to be within arms reach of her because she's not great at it. Eating solid foods like I said before. I haven't tried sitting her up by herself in a cart or restaurant high chair yet but at home she sits in her high chair for dinner now and had her first time sitting in her big girl stroller seat. Starting to babble ma-ma-ma sometimes!

Sibling Love
My favorite thing is to listen to Reaghan talk to Lilly. When she's fussing she'll say "Oh whats the matter my sweet love?" If Lilly is being silly and grabbing her hair Reaghan will say "No no sweet girwl." If she spits up she says "Ugh! You are da spit up queen!"  hahaha it reminds me that she is listening to everything I say ;) Reaghan is so proud that Lilly laughs at her when she jumps around. She says "My sister likes it when I go cwazy." She loves to wear matching clothes with Lilly. She never gets mad at her, even if Lilly accidentally hurts her by grabbing her hair or pinching her.

Is it just me, or is Lilly's head the same size as Reaghans?! haha

Special Outings/Events
We visited the farm for cousin Brooklyn's birthday. Had a beach day with family where a crab crawled up on her head while she was sleeping on a towel under the umbrella! (thankfully she had a hat on!) Visited the water park for the first time with big sissy and friends. Enjoyed pool days at Grammie and Pop Pops in her float.




Tuesday, August 1, 2017

Saturday, July 8, 2017

See Lilly Grow {5 Months}


Her official 5 month birthday was on July 3rd, but close enough right?

I'm still taken aback every once in a while when I look down and I've got two healthy, beautiful girls hanging out with me. That I have the sweet blessing of calling these girls my daughters. Lilly Jean continues to grow in personality and complexity. Her likes and dislikes seem to ebb and flow, all except for her need for her mommy, and she really, really, really wants to be a big girl like her sister! We love her big, bald, beautiful head and her squishy little thighs. We love her quick smile and blue eyes. We don't love her ability to leave your ears ringing when she is upset or her constant spit up.
Find out more about Lilly Jean's 5th month below!


Size
I stepped on the scale with her a couple of days ago and she is just over 16 pounds. She seems a lot heftier than she actually is! Her 2 month old cousin is catching up to her quick weighing in at 13 pounds. But she does love to eat and fits pretty easily into 6 month clothes.

Health
So thankful that we haven't had any sicknesses so far (other than her first month)! I have given her Tylenol on 2 or 3 occasions due to some unexplained fussiness, so she has possibly had some teething or just growing discomforts. But that doesn't even count. 

Feeding
She usually goes 2 1/2-3 hours between feedings, leaning more towards the 3 hour mark. She watches me intently when I am eating. I think she's figured out there's more to this eating thing than just milk! I wanted to wait until she was at least 5 months before I introduced anything to her to give her belly some more time to mature. Now that she is 5 months I almost feel bad not feeding her food because she so obviously wants to check it out. I bought her some Rice Cereal today so I'll probably introduce it to her this week.

Sleeping
Last month I wrote about a recent crib aversion phase that she was having and thankfully that was short lived. She is officially sleeping in her room in her crib. She is going to bed around 8:30 but still waking up once during the night. I try to get her to fall back asleep without eating. Sometimes she's good with just getting the paci, other times she's not going to be satisfied until she gets some more in her belly. She is taking a 1-2 hour morning nap and a 2-3 hour afternoon nap! Can I get an amen?! She's getting so smart too... usually if she wakes up I try to sneak in without her seeing me and stealthily stick her paci back in her mouth, but she knows where the door is now so as soon as she wakes up she pops her little head up and looks over her shoulder to the door! (She sleeps on her belly now that she can roll over.) Sometimes with her little face smooshed against the rails looking through the slats! It makes me laugh every time, which is good when I'm feeling less than happy about getting up at 3am. She flashes her precious smile as soon as she sees me or Reaghan in the morning.

Likes
Her mommy. A lot. I tell her all the time how flattered I am by it but that her daddy loves her just as much as I do! haha She likes to be part of the action. Wherever we are she wants to be there too, and she doesn't just want to see us she wants to be involved. She wants to be talked to or held! She's recently taken a liking to her swing and she's started hanging out a little bit in her exersaucer. Loves to grunt and squeal and kick her legs when she is excited. She likes to grab everything that's in her reach including faces and hair. She likes to put everything in her mouth. She likes to suck and chew on her fingers and sometimes gets her thumb in there. She likes her pool float and the outside baby swing. Daddy recently introduced the Baby Bum YouTube show to her out of desperation and she loves it!

Dislikes
Still with the car. Ugh. A friend suggested that it might be car sickness because she usually doesn't fuss about being in her seat until it is clicked into the car and we pull out of the driveway. I looked it up and unfortunately there's not much that can be done about it if it is carsickness. She doesn't get sick in the car anymore than usual, but it could still be nauseating for her. I feel bad if that's the case because there's nothing I can do about it. Sometimes we dread going places because we know we'll have to listen to screaming. She doesn't like it when mommy goes to take a shower and she has to hangout with daddy for all of 15 minutes - enter Baby Bum ; ) 


Milestones
She can roll from back to belly and belly to back like a pro! She thought 1 in the morning was a great time to practice those skills last night while she talked and fussed. It was adorable, but also not because of the whole 1 a.m. thing. She is getting much better at using her hands to grab objects and bring them to her mouth. Sometimes she can find her paci and put it back in her mouth herself which is hilarious for some reason. She is JUST getting the hang of sitting up but still not able to do it on her own yet. She does fine sitting in her Bumbo seat though. She can scoot herself off of her play mat so quickly, I'm not even sure how she does it. I have to watch her very closely on changing tables, beds and even in her little bouncy and Bumbo seats because she's strong and if she wants to get out she can arch that chunky little bum right out of something.


Sibling Love
She thinks its hilarious when I'm holding her and she looks down to see Reaghan jumping and dancing. Laughs when Reaghan "roars" at her. Will listen to Reaghan read her books. Reaghan is always on high alert for spit up as soon as she hears Lilly burp. She is a big helper and will get spit up rags and bibs for me all day long and wipe up spit up on the floor for me... even if she mimics my frustration about it with some groaning! Reaghan always asks "Can I see my baby sister?" and always calls her "Baby Yilly" She likes to hold her but will tell me "I'm all done" or "I think she's too heavy for me right now" when she gets tired of sitting with her. She loves to talk about being a big sissy and I love watching her be a big sissy.


Special Outings/Events
We celebrated daddy's birthday and Father's day. Daddy just got a new picture for his desk at work from the girls. She spent 2 nights away from mommy when I went with Mark on his work trip up to Northern Va. That was hard! 1 night for our anniversary was tough, 2 nights was a long time to be away. I had to to pump so much milk for her to have enough and I was so worried that it wasn't going to be, thankfully what I had was exactly the right amount. We had Baby Dedication Day at church. She celebrated her first 4th of July and slept right through the fireworks snuggled against mommy in the ergo carrier with headphones over her ears. :)



P.S. she's wearing the same 4th of July clothes that Reag wore at 9 months old ; )





Saturday, July 1, 2017

July Goals

I've been feeling the need to get myself organized the past couple of weeks. There is so much I want to do - improvements to our house, organizing rooms, adding decor in places, begin working out again, lose some weight, eat better, be more consistent with my daily devotions, memorize scripture, meal plan, save money, remember important meetings at work, etc. etc. the list goes on an on. Sometimes I feel like I'm running around, going through all of the same motions but without purpose or goals in mind. I see things that need doing but I put them off and do the things that I do everyday and then before I know it weeks have past and I still haven't gotten around to cleaning my closet! Little things like that are starting to build up and making me feel unorganized and unaccomplished. 

Take for instance the dishes, yea they totally need to get done, but do I need to make sure my sink stays completely dish free all day long and do dishes and wipe down the counter for the 100th time instead of letting that sit until dinner time and cleaning my closet instead? Or another example... the girls and I are out having fun running errands, playing or visiting with people, and then when we get home we do nothing because I feel like IF I can't complete a major project from start to finish in one day then I'll just save it for the next day. I'm not good at doing things in baby steps because it takes a while for me to process what those steps should be! I'm always busy but accomplishing nothing of significance. 

Enter the Planner!

I actually L.O.V.E planners. Buying a cute new planner with all of the matching stationary when I was in school was always something I looked forward to. I guess I decided after I graduated that I didn't really need to use a planner because I didn't have classes and tests to keep up with, but I've missed having a planner! I saw this cute one at Marshall's last week and decided on a whim to get it and start organizing my days! 


I thought it was super cute and even though it says 2018 on it, its actually an 18 month planner that starts in July so it was perfect. AND inexpensive since it was at Marshall's. : )


I've already filled out my goals for this month and the "to-do" list is growing to help me reach those goals. Here's a peak at my July goals...

GOALS:
  • Exercise 3x a week
  • Lose 5 pounds of baby weight
  • Memorize Ephesians 6:10-18 that goes along with my summer bible study.
  • Organize the Room over the Garage
  • Organize my bedroom closet
  • Use budget app consistently
I think having the "to-do" list written out on paper in one place is going to help me tremendously! During nap time or other free{or even not so free} moments I'll be able to look and say okay I can take a bite out of my closet project by going through all of my bags and finding a place for them. Next day I'll do my shoes. It sounds so silly.... why do I need a planner to help me think like that?! ... I have no idea. Mom Brain? I don't know, I just feel more productive and work better when I have a list that I'm checking off. It's my own little accountability partner. All I know is that I need more purpose to my days. I think if I can see that I'm reaching goals and getting things done I won't be caught up in meaningless less meaningful, busy housework and can have more fun and purposeful time with the girls as well. I'm hoping having a planner will help me keep track of myself a little better. 



I like this little inspirational quote at the beginning of July. Each day can be full of meaning and purpose if I'm cognizant of what the day has to offer. I am hoping this is going to help me be less "busy" and more intentional with my time and energy!

Thursday, June 22, 2017

Paci Free!

Reaghan has officially been pacifier free for 1 whole week!

She has only been allowed to use her paci at nap times and bedtimes for almost a year now, but for some reason we just couldn't get rid of it all together. Some of it was hesitancy on my part. I knew how easily the pacifier helped her fall asleep and I was selfishly worried that she wouldn't nap or sleep as well without it. Obviously as she's gotten older its become more and more obvious that she didn't really need it she was just used to using it.

When Lilly was born I tried to feel her out about getting rid of the paci, saying that now that Lilly was here she might need all the paci's and since she was a big girl she should give her pacifiers to Lilly. She was very matter of fact in that conversation, letting me know that Lilly had her own paci's and she could keep her big girl paci's. She wasn't really getting the whole "big girls don't use pacifiers" thing. Since she didn't jump on board with a positive connection between Lilly and giving up the paci's I decided to wait for a couple months so there wouldn't be any negative associations. Maybe I read too many blog posts and over thought the idea that she might be bitter towards Lilly if she was the reason she had to give up her paci because honestly, Reaghan has shown zero jealousy, bitterness, resentment whatever towards her baby sister. So it probably wouldn't have been that big of a deal, but wait I did. Also, I needed to come to a place where I was getting enough sleep that I could handle any toddler meltdowns in the middle of the night along with the newborn's needs! Once I felt like I could handle it if went horrifically wrong, I started telling her at night during her bed time routine that we were going to have to say goodbye to her paci soon, and then I said in a few days, and then one night I told her that if she gave up her pacifier she would get a special treat. {she sort of loves special treats!} She immediately pulled her paci out of her mouth and handed it to me! haha I told her I didn't have a special treat right then, and that she could sleep with her paci one more night and the next day we would say goodbye to the pacifier and get a special treat. She went to bed really excited about the idea. I went to bed thinking oh man, this is it. We have to go through with it now! This could be my last night of decent(ish) sleep for a while!

The following night at dinner we told her our plan. We said we would put her pacifier in a special bag, take it to the ice cream shop and throw it away and after she threw it away she could get her special ice cream treat! She was so excited! I l.o.v.e when she gets excited about things. When we got there she marched right up to that trashcan, took her paci out of the back and tossed it into the trashcan without a second thought! I was the one that got a little choked up when I saw that pink paci fall into the dark hole. I'm ridiculously sentimental. But you guys! My first baby is growing up!


She enjoyed every bit of picking out all of the toppings for her ice cream and savored every bite. I knew we hadn't gotten to the hard part yet so I was still a little nervous about how the night would go. When it was bed time I reminded her of how she traded her paci for a special treat and how proud of her we were and that she could pick out a toy to sleep with instead. She chose one of her stuffed teddy bears and our bedtime routine continued on as usual. No tears. No nothing. It did take her longer to fall asleep and at one point she called to ask if she could sleep with her polka dot blanket too and we obliged her sweet request. Once she fell asleep, we didn't hear from her again until the morning!


I couldn't believe it! I was kicking myself for not getting rid of that thing sooner, but also eased my mommy guilt by telling myself we waited until she was really ready. I couldn't believe it was so easy!

But I celebrated a little too soon because he next night was a different story. There was quite a bit of pouting and tears. She wanted to know how she was going to twirl her hair if she didn't have her paci???  Reaghan's not really a big fit thrower... when she doesn't get her way she pouts, and cries and tells us she's sad. Usually she is reprimanded for this behavior but we loved her through her paci withdrawals reminding her how proud of her we were for being a big girl and emphasized the new blanket/toy that she could sleep with. She eventually fell asleep that night too! The third night was minimal pouting and no tears and by the 4th night that pink pacifier was a distant memory. It didn't affect her napping in the afternoon either which was something I was dreading! 

She hasn't asked for it once since that second night and she is very proud of herself for not using a paci anymore because she is a big girl now and pacifiers are for babies. ; ) Every night she picks out a blanket to sleep with and stuffed animal and she's good. 

I'm so proud of my little girl. The break the paci addiction went way better than we anticipated with really only one bad night! I definitely don't miss her hair being piled up in knots from all the twirling right now or the drool on her shirts after nap time! But I do cherish each little milestone, realizing there will be a last time for everything! 

Treasure all the little ins and outs mama's, I imagine in 10 years I am going to miss her sitting on my lap while I gently brush the knots out of her hair in the morning. <3

Monday, June 19, 2017

Father's Day {2017}

See this guy? This is the one my 16 year old heart fell in love with 12 years ago. If you had told me then that I was actually going to grow up to marry him and have his babies I might have fainted from happiness. Okay, probably not cause I'm really not the swooning type of girl, but you get the idea.  My 16 year old self always wanted that to be the plan, but the fact that it actually happened?! Wow. God is good to me,


I've had 2 girls with the beanie loving, 2 shirt wearing drummer pictured above. {I thought his style was so cool when we were in high school, and to be honest, I still kind of love it when he wears a beanie} We've both grown up a lot since then and even more since we decided to bring babies into this world. I've seen him grow in selflessness and compassion. He demonstrates tenderness and patience when my patience runs dry. I've seen the worry in his eyes when his girls are sick or hurt, revealing the depth of his love for them. I'm humbled by the way he always rushes to be the hero for Reaghan's timid personality. I've learned his "limit" and how he functions under more exhaustion than we've ever known. I've watched him develop into a father that is purposeful and intentional with his love, discipline, and time. 

Sunday, June 11, 2017

See Lilly Grow {4 Months}

Lilly is growing way too fast for me! We are enjoying watching her develop more and more of a personality but it is bittersweet to see her growing up. We've watched one baby morph into a toddler before our very eyes and our second seems to be moving a long even faster!

In a way she's grown a lot this past month reaching milestones, and at the same time I feel like I could leave much of what I wrote last month exactly the same!



Thursday, June 1, 2017

OBX Beach Week!

Last week was our annual Beach Week trip with Mark's family! We're starting to outgrow the little condo we stay in now that we have 2 toddlers and 2 babies filling the space up with all of the things, not to mention vacation with 2 kids is even more work than vacation with one buuttttt its totally worth it.

 We had some rainy days and some really nice beach days. We did some shopping, had a tornado warning one night, and I may have dressed the girls in matching outfits every. single. day.

We worked through some severe toddler anxiety regarding the beach with Reaghan. I wish I could say we overcame by the end of the week, but she was still terrified on our last beach day. Once we were down at the beach for a little while she would slowly start to relax and enjoy herself and even wanted to be carried down to the waves to SEE them {touching the water was out of the question} but her initial reaction at the top of the dunes was to have a meltdown because she was scared. So thats what I mean by work through. It completely caught us off guard because she's been to the beach here at home this season without any issues and even our first beach day on Monday in the OBX she didn't have any anxiety, but when we went back to the beach on Thursday she was a mess. Toddler's are super fun sometimes you guys.

Here's a little recap of our week:

DAY 1:
First Beach Day! It was a little overcast and windy but still fun. 
 Babies did great napping under the umbrella!

DAY 2:
It was chilly and rainy so we decided to go to the aquarium... which apparently was also every other person in the OBX plan as well. The line to get in was ridiculous so we headed to the outlets instead and then enjoyed a relaxing afternoon at the Condo!


DAY 3:
It was chilly and still a little rainy so we decided to wake up early and try the aquarium again. We got there right when it opened this time so no lines! Reaghan was terrified of half of the exhibits. She's not an adventurous kid. haha In her defense the shark in the shark tank was definitely on the creepy side and looked like it was coming right towards her and Mark!  


After the aquarium we walked around Manteo and ate at our favorite sandwich shop, Poor Richards. We played at the park a little bit, got some ice cream, had a delicious seafood dinner that night to celebrate Mark's sister getting Tenure at ODU and then took an evening walk on the beach.


DAY 4:
It finally stopped raining so we were able to enjoy another beach day! This was the day that Reaghan decided she hated the beach! Mark was super daddy and brought down a little blow up pool for the girls to play in and played games with them to help Reaghan focus on anything other than the waves! She eventually asked Mark to take her down to see them and teach her about trusting him. <3


That night we visited a new playground and as soon as we pulled into the parking lot it started to thunder, lightning and down pour! We decided to wait it out and thankfully it passed after 5 minutes. The playground was super wet after that, but we had some towels to dry it off and we still had fun. 


DAY 5:
Another beautiful day! All 4 girls wore flamingo bathing suits so we had to get a picture right?
After dinner we went out and did a little shopping and then came back and let the girls play with the things they got and made necklaces with them. Lilly tried so hard to roll over from back to belly while we were there but just couldn't figure it out!


DAY 6:
Our last beach day! Since this was our 3rd beach day in a row we were starting to get a little beached out, especially with Reaghan still being afraid to leave her towel or chair for most of the time we were there, so we didn't stay too long. We still enjoyed building some sand castles and Lilly loved the little hole in the sand we made for her so she could be propped up and see what was going on. My favorite part of the beach days was honestly bringing the girls in, giving them baths and getting them ready for their naps. There is something so satisfying about clean, sleepy babes. Reaghan was so sweet with Lilly after their baths as they laid on the floor or on the bed together while I showered. I couldn't get enough of it. I just wanted to bottle up those moments. I stared and savored as long as I could and then patted their sweet bums to sleep. 


My in laws went out to dinner at their favorite restaurant that night and we took the kids to a local, more casual seafood place for dinner. After dinner we went to Tshirt Whirl to pick out custom OBX shirts. Reaghan and Brooklyn liked watching the Tshirt press. And we ended our last night with a walk on the beach. Mark wins super daddy of the year again for always carrying Reaghan on our walks since she was too scared to walk by herself. Granted she's a petite little thing, but she still gets heavy after a while!


I'm so thankful for our chance to spend time with family and relax with some sunshine and sand in our toes! It's the perfect way to kick off summer.