Friday, February 16, 2018

Dear World

 Dear World,

This is my crew.

Now they don't know yet, just how broken you are. They don't know there is hurt beyond scraped knees and that mommy's kisses can't actually fix everything. All that is in my mama heart wants to keep it that way, but I know I can't.

What I want them to know is that in our family, we love people. Hard. Even if they are different than us, we love the heck out of them.

I want them to be young men who make room. Make room for friends on the playground, classmates at the lunch table and women at the board table.

I want them to know that I would rather send them to school with a hundred Valentines than for someone to feel left out.

I want them to be kids who give away their lunch money, because they see a classmate who hasn't eaten in a week. 

I want them to know how to win with pride and lose with grace.

I want them to know they are safe when they go to school and church.

I want our adults to stop acting like children so that our children can stop having to act like adults.

I want all of our children to have the futures we write on those first day of school chalkboards. 

Sincerely,

Their Mom


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Friday, February 2, 2018

Winter

SO normally I'm one that likes seasons to feel like seasons. Meaning I like it to be warm (not hot) in the summer, cool in the fall and cold in the winter. I don't mind it being cold when it's supposed to be cold. Summer seems to last about 7 months here. This year, this sign couldn't be more true.
I'm sure it's the combination of having boys that would live outside and the fact that the flu season is a monster this year, so we haven't been leaving the house. Other than school (which is even a question mark), we have put all other activities on hold. No church, no Chick-fil-A, no mall playgrounds, no tiny carts at Trader Joe's. Mama may lose her mind, but Jude is too young for a flu shot. So that leaves us playing in every corner of our house until it's a little less cold (still not warm) to go outside later in the day. We've also watched a lot of movies.

We got a little more snow. I say a little, because after the pre-Christmas blizzard of 2017 it immediately feels like I'm from the north. Anything less than 6in doesn't feel like much at all and this was probably closer to two. 



Every year on MLK weekend, my college roommates and I manage to escape for the weekend. I say escape, because we have 14 kids between us so it takes a lot of work to leave a preschool behind. 

Pre-quarantine shopping trip.

 Drowning in babies and I wouldn't have it any other way.
Trying out all sorts of new big boy things with this one.

I posted this picture for his 4mo post, but couldn't not post it here too. Jude's pouty lip is just the cutest and definitely lets us know when he doesn't like something. 

We went to a family wedding in TX and Jude was  the perfect little third wheel.


 Any time that daddy is home generally looks like this. PJ's, puffy coats and all the balls outside.
 But seriously, winter, you can move along now.


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Monday, January 29, 2018

Four Months

FOUR. This has been your biggest month yet, sweet boy! You celebrated your first New Year's as we rang in 2018. We had yet another snow day and you took your first plane ride for a family wedding in Texas. This has been my most favorite month yet as you are really growing into your little personality. You love to smile, laugh, chew on your fists, kick your feet and roll around on your play mat. You are starting to love your new excersaucer you got for Christmas, but I think you like being able to sit up and look at everything instead of lying on your back constantly. It also allows you to be eyeball to eyeball with your big brothers.

You love eating, napping, bath time, sleeping in your car seat and watching your loud brothers run around.

You don't love when your brothers are too loud and they scare you, the process of getting your pj's on after bath, when your schedule is thrown off thanks to school or church, when we leave you in your bed all night long instead of feeding you every few hours.

I just moved you up to size 3 diapers, because you were exploding out of the 2's. You're wearing size 3-6mo. clothing. You are up to 14.9lbs and 26in.

You tagged along with us to Texas for a family wedding last weekend and did so well with the exception of the plane ride there. You slept through the entire rehearsal dinner, wedding and reception. Your schedule was thrown off, but I think you liked having mommy and daddy all to yourself.

Speaking of schedule, here is where we're at currently:

8AM- wake up and eat
8-9:30AM- awake time; play time if we're at home
9:30-11AM- nap; home or car seat if we're on the go
11AM- eat
11-12:30- awake time
12:30-2PM- nap
2PM- eat
2-3PM- awake time
3PM- nap
5PM- eat
5-6PM- awake/fussy time
6PM- cat nap
6:45PM- bath time; watch brothers get ready for bed
7:15PM- bottle and books with brothers
7:45PM- bed time

You're "sleeping through the night" in the sense that I'm not feeding you, but you don't actually stay asleep all night long. You'll wake up and cry for a bit, but then eventually fall back asleep.

Your hair might be one of my most favorite things about you right now. It sticks straight up in the back no matter how much I brush it down.

You are such a happy little guy and give us plenty of smiles and laughs, but when you're not happy about something you certainly let us know. You get the saddest/cutest little pouty lip and most of the time, it's followed by a loud scream.

I can't wait for the weather to warm up, so that we can get out of this nasty flu season and go on some walks. I have a feeling you're going to like being outside just as much as your big brothers.

Sweet boy, we love you so much and feel so blessed to be your mommy and daddy. You are the sweetest little gift we never knew we needed.



A perfect example of the pouty lip.







 Here are your big brothers at four months.







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Sunday, December 31, 2017

2017

2017, you were too good to our little family. We started out the year in Disney World after celebrating a Clemson National Championship.


 This big boy rode his first roller coaster.


A couple weeks after coming home, we sold our first house.
 And were blessed to purchase our new home with plenty of space for our growing family.
 Speaking of our growing family...
 We found out in January that baby brother would be joining our family in the Fall.
 We celebrated Ryder turning 2.
And Finn finished his very first year of preschool.
 We celebrated 10 years of marriage in May.
 And made ourselves right at home at our new neighborhood pool over the summer.

Our biggest boy started 3-day preschool at a new school this Fall.
And turned 4 in September.
At 9:24 on 9.24 we welcomed our third baby boy to our family when Jude was born.


 At a month old, we took our first family day trip to dive right into Fall.

 We got to experience Halloween in our new neighborhood.
 And I started doing life out and about as a mom of three.
 Finn's school had a Thanksgiving party.
 And we took a day trip to Clemson.
 We picked out this baby boy's first Christmas tree.

 And saw the man in red.
 Clemson won the ACC Championship and finished the season at number 1!
 We got our first snowstorm in our new house.


 We celebrated Christmas with family in South Carolina.
 And spent Christmas at home as my family came to join us.




2017, you were oh so sweet and we were blessed far beyond what we deserve. Yes, we had our share of challenges and refining moments- but it's the sweet, everyday moments that stand out the most. Our house is loud and messier than I'd prefer but I wouldn't change a thing. I feel like I spent the better part of 2017 moving, unpacking, setting up a new house and learning a new town all while being massively pregnant chasing after two toddlers. I am most looking forward to diving into a new year in our new home as a new family of five. So cheers to 2018, we are ready for you.

And another Clemson National Championship would be nice too.
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