Tuesday, March 31, 2015

From One to Two

I can't begin to explain how excited we are to welcome baby Vivian in just a few short weeks. She is an answer to prayers, and a blessing that we are wholly unworthy of. We are well aware of that, and are so thankful for her little life. 

At the same time, my heart aches a bit at the thought of Caleb losing his status as our only child. As his mama, this experience is truly bittersweet for me. After all, since 2013 - for almost 2 years now - it's just been Caleb and me. Of course, B has been around to love on him too. But the majority of every day has been spent with just mama and Caleb. Playing. Cuddling. Laughing. Learning. Loving. And I've cherished every. sweet. second. with my precious boy. It's been so freeing to love someone so unabashedly and wholeheartedly. Caleb truly has given me a new purpose in life, and I would never change that for anything in this world.

I'd be lying if I said that I didn't have some hesitation about the thought of our dynamics changing. I worry about it. I do. I worry that my heart can't possibly be big enough to love another child the way I do my son. I love him so, so, so much, I just don't see how it's possible. I know it is, but right now, I just can't imagine it. I worry that one of my children will suffer. Either Caleb - feeling neglected by the arrival of a new little one that will need so much of my attention. Or Vivi - who may not get the same level or intensity of love that I had for her big brother, who was my first baby love. 

Deep down, I have a calm reassurance about everything. I know that it will all fall into place just as it is meant to. I know that each of my children will hold a special place in my heart - a place of their very own. I understand that my love will be equal for them both, but that at the same time, the love might be different for each as well. After all, they will be different little people, with different personalities and preferences. Despite the reassurance that I feel, I still worry. I worry that I am not ready for two children. I worry that my mothering is not up to par for that. I worry that they will need more than I can give. 

I just worry. 

I am particularly good at worrying. In the weeks leading up to Caleb's birth, I remember worrying about a lot of the same things. Was I ready to be a mother? Would I be a good one? Would Caleb love me back? Would mothering instincts come naturally to me? I thought of it all. And worried about it all. And now, 2 years later, I can see the answers to my questions right in front of my eyes. Plain as day. I may not be the best mother in the world. But, I am the best mother for my son. I may not have been ready to have him when he arrived - but no one ever really is. As soon as he was placed in my arms, he taught me what becoming a mother was all about. And he's been teaching me ever since. I am certainly not perfect, and will never be a perfect mother. But my son wants for nothing, especially not love. And his love for me? Well, it's indisputable. From the day he was born, he was turning his tiny little head toward the sound of my voice and reaching for me. I have never doubted his love for me. His unwavering trust that I love him and will provide for him. It's such a privilege. His love is an honor that I know I don't deserve.

And Vivi's will be too. I know that. Sometimes, I just need to get these thoughts and worries out. To sort through them. To remember them. To look back on them, and learn from my past. To share them with other mothers going through the same thing.

Fellow mamas: we may never be perfect, but we were chosen for our children for a reason.

Monday, March 30, 2015

A Bestie Baby Shower & Deals to Good To Pass Up {Weekend Review}

This weekend was full of beautiful weather, fun things and loved ones. Well, loved ones aside from my husband, that is. Between Friday and Saturday, B worked 40 out of the 48 hours in those two days (averaging 4 hours of sleep for both nights). And was then back at work on Sunday from 6 am until 6 pm. Fun. No matter how many times it happens, it's never easy to see him worked so hard. And it's never easy to be at home alone with a little one for such long stretches. Caleb didn't see his Daddy - at all - between Thursday and Sunday, which I know is really hard on B. I can't imagine going days without seeing Caleb. We are so thankful that we have next weekend together, as we are really looking forward to that time.

Happily, while B was putting in a long hours on Saturday, I was able to have some fun helping host a baby shower for my best friend, Erin. She and I have been best friends since we were 12 - well over half of our lives now. She is married to the love of her life, Chandler, who she actually met through a singles post on Kelly's Korner blog (the post that Chandler connected with her through was one that I posted on my blog!) And now she is pregnant with a baby girl, and due just 6 weeks after I am. I honestly don't think we could have planned this better if we tried. We both hope our sweet girls will be as close as we have been over the years. I get teary just thinking about it. I've loved getting to share our pregnancies, and am so excited to help her welcome their sweet Peyton Taylor in June. 

On Saturday, Pops came to pick up Caleb, and I headed to north Atlanta for some baby shower goodness. I co-hosted the shower with Erin's sister, Morgan, and another sweet friend, Katie - who opened up her home for the event. I'll let the pictures speak for themselves.

Some of the decor 

Katie's sweet son, Grant

The diaper cake I put together

 The dessert bar that Morgan put together - s'mores pops included (yum)

Sweet mama-to-be opening some of her gifts

The three of us have been friends since middle school!

Erin with all of her shower hostesses...

The Peyton bump!

Besties with bumps!

I know Erin loved her shower, and was so happy to get a few of the things that she and Chandler need for their baby girl. It was so great to get to spend some time with her, along with several other friends and loved ones. And so hard to believe that the next time I see her will be when Vivian arrives. Eeek!

On Sunday, Caleb and I stayed home and rested. I don't know if he's coming down with a cold, if the weather changes are just hard on him (it was in the low 30's here overnight this weekend after being quite warm last week), or if it's allergies, but his little nose was just running like a faucet and he felt warm to me. I hated missing Palm Sunday services at church, but it was good that we didn't try to go, as after a dose of Benadryl, Caleb was asleep by 10:45 and slept until almost 1:00. When he woke up, we had lunch. While we were eating, a loud popping noise came from the direction of the garage. It sounded like someone had run into our garage door. I popped my head out but didn't see anything, so I chalked it up to a neighbor, and went about my business. Around 2:00, I had Caleb buckled into his car seat so that we could run to Target, and just get out of the house for a bit. We were all ready to go - which, as every mom knows, takes a good bit of effort at 35 weeks pregnant and with a toddler. I went to hit the garage door opener, the door went up about 6 inches, and then stopped. After pushing the button about 54 billion times, I realized that the door was just not going to open. And I might have had a little pregnancy breakdown at that point. I just wanted to make a quick run to Target. Was that too much to ask? It might as well have been the end of the world for my hormonal self at that moment. Ugh. 

After our sweet neighbor came over to look at the door, and determined that our spring was broken, and then B's uncle came over to actually hoist the door open and then closed for me, we were finally able to leave. Until it gets fixed, we will be unable to use our garage, but honestly, the joy of sweet freedom was so great, I didn't care. I was just happy to get out! So, Caleb and I made our way to Target. We had a gift card to spend and some baby items to pick up. I was hoping to grab a few things we still needed - like a changing pad cover and one more nursing tank - but unfortunately, our Target was out of stock of both. Did we just leave without purchasing anything though? Of course not. You can't leave without buying something. Instead, I ended up taking advantage of some irresistible deals including the 30% off Xhileration pajamas, and the buy one, get one for 50% off on all Carters clothing and Merona women's clothing. Vivian came away with these sweet little leggings, this sun hat (the eyelet - I die!), and this adorable set. And I ended up with this presh (non-maternity) dress and these lounge pants. Which I anticipate spending a lot of time in in the weeks following Vivian's birth. Might as well look cute while I'm at it, right? As a side note, these deal are running at Target through the end of this week, so check them out while you can!

After our Target run, Caleb and I headed back home, and were so excited when B arrived home shortly thereafter, so we were able to have dinner together. Spaghetti, homemade strawberry milkshakes, and our weekly Walking Dead date wrapped up our weekend. I've hit 35 weeks, and am feeling super large and in charge now. Less than 5 weeks to go! Hoping you all had a great weekend! 

Friday, March 27, 2015

Bow Ties, Deals & DIY's {Friday Link Ups}

Before we get started on our Friday five, if you missed my review of the darling moccs I shared earlier this week, you can catch that here. Here's one more reminder to take advantage of the amazing discount the sweet folks over at Sweet N Swag have offered my blog readers. Pop over to their website and enter in the code thenewly for 25% off all orders from now through Sunday. $15 baby moccasins. What are you waiting for? 

On another note, we have so been enjoying the spring weather here in Georgia! Though we've had a lot of rain and clouds this week, we did manage to play outside for over 2 hours yesterday, and it was just glorious. Wishing spring weather comes quickly to all of my northern friends:)

Yes!  One of life's most wonderful, simple pleasures!  :)

1| Baby Boys in Bow Ties
Recently, Kristin from Addibug Designs, sent Caleb two little bow ties from her Peter Thomas & Co line. I opened the package and immediately fell in love. I mean, is there anything more darling than a sweet baby boy in a classic bow tie? I think not. And how cute are the bow ties themselves? I love both the light blue and the yellow gingham for spring, but am also in love with the seersucker, chambray, and patterned options she offers on her site to kick up a little man's outfit a notch or two. 

On another note: I know I'm biased, but could this kid be any more adorable? I could just eat him up. 

2| Recent Purchases & Finds
I was so excited when my new diaper bag arrived this week. It's the little things in life isn't it? Ha. It is when you become a mom at least. I knew I liked how it looked online, and was just hoping I liked it as much in person. And I do! It's a great size, has a coordinating changing pad and organizational pockets on the inside - which makes my OCD heart flutter - and even an insulated pocket on the outside for bottles. Love. (And as a side note, if you order through Bed, Bath, & Beyond, you can use one of their 20% off coupons to get $20 off). 

Recently, I picked up a new bottle of this polish - in Ballet Slippers - my absolute favorite shade of pink for nails. Love that it's neutral enough every day, and doesn't show chipping.

I also grabbed a bottle of this polish. Which I wear on my toenails from about March to September. I wore it on my wedding day. And I was wearing it the day I delivered Caleb. I guess you could call it a favorite:)

3| A Pretty Little Nursery DIY
Many a can of spray paint has been used in the creation of Vivian's nursery. It was the same way when we set about creating Caleb's nursery. To get exactly what we wanted, we had to make it ourselves in several cases. We are no strangers to DIY projects at this point. So, when I decided that I wanted some pretty little hooks for Vivi's nursery, and couldn't find what I wanted, I set about gathering the materials to make what I wanted. With B's help, we made this adorable little rack for her wall (where her coming home outfit will be displayed for a while after we bring her home). 

Here's what you'll need:
1 wooden plaque (purchased from Hobby Lobby with a 40% off coupon for about $5)
3 decorative glass knobs (purchased from Hobby Lobby during 50% sale for $3 each)
1 can white spray paint

For a grand total of $17. Deal.

4| A Random Kohl's PSA
So, I am not the biggest Kohl's shopper. But I will say, when Kohl's does deals, they DO deals - unlike many stores, they let you combine coupons, and use discounts on pretty much everything in the store, including clearance. I like to look for clothing for Caleb (and now Vivian) there. I ventured over there yesterday to look for some pajamas for Caleb - poor kid has no lightweight pjs. With the $10 in Kohl's cash I had from a previous purchase, along with a 15% off coupon they are running right now if you spend less than $100 (20% if you spend more than $100), AND a promotion that they are running which is $10 off a kid's purchase of more than $30, I was able to score Caleb two new sets of pjs, a polo t-shirt, and a pair of shorts for $11. That, my friends, is what I call a steal. Mama like.

The baseball jammies will be going into Caleb's Easter basket. And I might be going back for the whale set while this deal is running too:)

5| A Busy Weekend
Tomorrow, I am heading up to north Atlanta to host a baby shower for my dear friend, Erin - who is due with her sweet baby girl, Peyton, just 6 weeks after Vivian is due. I have been preparing all week for this fun event, and can't wait to see my bestie and celebrate her precious baby. My mama will be at the shower as well, along with several dear friends, so it will be fun to see everyone! I'll be sure to share some pictures on Monday!

And on that random note, I'm off. Hope you all have a wonderful weekend!



Oh Hey, Friday: September Farm and The Farmer's Wife


Thursday, March 26, 2015

Baby K #2 {34 Weeks}

I'm truly having a hard time wrapping my mind around the fact that our sweet baby girl will be here in just over 5 weeks. Or even less. At my OB appointment yesterday, my doctor mentioned that she could see me delivering as early as 38 weeks based on my symptoms and my history (I delivered Caleb at 37 weeks, 1 day). Maybe Vivian will surprise us all and stick around to bake until 40 weeks, but right now, I am just trying to make sure that I get everything that we need done wrapped up within the next couple of weeks. If nothing else, for peace of mind!

How Far Along: 34 weeks, 4 days 

Weight Gain: As of my appointment yesterday,  I am up 27 pounds and change. Ugh.  That's 3 pounds gained in just the last 3 weeks. Not loving it. My total gain with Caleb was 27 pounds, so it looks like I'll definitely be surpassing that amount. Then again, he was a couple of weeks early, so I probably would have been closer to a 30 pound gain with him had I gone full-term. I'm thinking I'll end up with a 30'ish pound gain with Vivian. 

Symptoms: Back pain. Fatigue. Contractions. Insomnia (despite the medicine I take to prevent it). The gamut. My body is running out of room, and I'm beginning to wonder if I'll be able to keep her in for 40 weeks.

Cravings/Aversions: Fruit. Give me all the fruit. And cinnamon sugar donuts - which I have not indulged in, but probably will soon.

What I am Missing: Normal clothing. Walking without a waddle. Having energy. Normal clothing. Sleeping soundly. Sleeping at all. Normal clothing. Did I mention normal clothing?

Size Of Baby: Week 34, baby is the size of a cantaloupe (about 4.75 pounds and 18 inches). My measurements are right on target for 34 weeks, but I still have a sneaking suspicion that there's a big girl in my belly. We'll see...

Sleep: Let's not talk about it. Between getting up to pee, worrying about every little thing possible (literally), creating to do lists in my mind, and getting up in the night with Caleb - who still wakes up once in a while - my sleep is pretty much nil. I'm not bitter about it or anything. Ahem.

Workouts: Ha!

Clothing: Thankfully, I was able to switch out my winter maternity clothing for some of the spring duds I had when I was pregnant with Caleb, and have really been enjoying wearing some of that. I think if I had to wear some of those sweaters one more time, I would have screamed. Maxi dresses and skirts are just so much more comfortable than any of my maternity pants at this point. Still rocking these leggings (on sale now!) Went ahead and purchased a couple of these nursing camis - which ended up fitting a lot better than these (and which are buy one, get one 50% off right now). I also purchased a new nursing bra and sleep bra from Hotmilk Lingerie. They are running a clearance sale right now, so if you are need, check them out!

Gender: Sweet baby girl! 

Nursery: I haven't had time to take any pictures but as soon as I do, I will be ready to share the nursery with you all! I can't wait!:) Stay tuned for it in the next week or so!

Best Moment This Week: Getting to hear our sweet girl's heartbeat - going strong and steady at 148 bpm - after a rough night of pain and contractions. I was so glad that I just so happened to have my 34 week appointment the very next day, as it was such a relief to get checked out after worrying through the night. I am really trying to slow down and take it easy, but it's so against my nature to do that, I almost don't know how!

We also enjoyed finishing up the important items on our registry this week. We should (knock on wood) have pretty much everything we need at this point, should Vivi decide to arrive early. Now I just need to get started on her baby book and pack my hospital bags!


If you didn't catch my post yesterday, be sure to pop over and read it here to get a 25% off discount code for the cutest baby moccs you ever did see! You have until Sunday to take advantage of the deal:)

Wednesday, March 25, 2015

Trendy Toes {Sweet n Swag}

All I've been hearing about and seeing over the last few months are baby moccasins. They're all over. I know that you all have seen them too. They are so trendy. And they are so cute!

What's not so cute? The price tag on some of these tiny little things. I am all for investing money in a good pair of shoes, but paying upwards of $50 for a pair of shoes for a baby that isn't even walking yet, and who will most likely grow out of them in just a couple of months, is not something I am willing to do.

Then I found Sweet N Swag.

They offer precious moccasins in a rainbow of gorgeous colors and a variety of materials. For just $20. For real. Twenty dollars. That, I can get behind. Recently, Shannon over at Sweet n Swag sent me this adorable pair of Rose Gold moccasins for Vivian. How perfect are these? I love that they are neutral enough to be worn with almost anything, but are still sweet, pink and girly. 

The quality is great. The material is durable. Even the packaging is fabulous. I can't wait to see Vivi's sweet little baby feet in these adorable moccs. I'm in love. 

So in love in fact, that I have already planned out my next purchases. The following pairs will be making their way into Vivian's closet sooner rather than later.

baby moccs gold
baby moccs pink gold polka dot

Here's the best part: Shannon and the kind folks over at Sweet N Swag have generously offered my readers an awesome discount on top of their already affordable prices. Now through Sunday, use the code thenewly to get 25% off any purchase. 

Ladies, that brings your total to just $15 for a pair of baby moccasins. 

Buy a pair. Or, you know, four.

If you've been wanting to try this adorable trend for your little one, well, there's no better time than now! And don't forget to keep up with @sweetnswag on Instagram for future deals and steals!