Saturday, May 31, 2014

Wings And Rock Festival

Mel decided we needed some spontaneity in our lives, so we all went to a festival in Woodstock today. It was hot as Hades, but we got some good food and listened to some fun music!

Using our "new" double, jogging stroller for the first time. We loved it! A girlfriend wasn't able to sell it in her last garage sale, so she passed it on to us for free!  So glad Steve remembered to grab it - it kept shade on the girls, and made it so much easier to walk around with Bella and Evelyn.

What's a summer festival without snow cones? I think Evelyn was trying to convince Bella to give her a bite of hers.

Daddy and Evelyn sampling the wings. Evelyn's our adventurous eater!

Steve and I, listening to the concert.

We were there for a couple of hours, and enjoyed being out in the sun!

Wednesday, May 28, 2014

Bella's Dream Day

Bella and Evelyn's primary babysitters are the Kelling girls. Erin just turned 16, and she's amazing with the girls! Plus, it's awesome knowing that she'll be around for a few more years. Before she started, her older sister, Courtney, watched the girls most often. 

Courtney loves riding horses and has been doing it for years now. She knows how much Bella loves horses, so now that she's home from college, she offered  to take us to her stables to give Bella a chance to brush the horses and get more exposure.

Bella and I were so excited! Courtney's riding coach wasn't going to be there today, so Bella wouldn't be able to actually ride in the horse, but she still had plenty of up-close and personal time!

Watching Courtney bring Mack and Clyde in from the pasture.
Meeting Mack for the first time! He was really gentle!

Courtney let Bella hold onto the lead ropes as the horses walked to the stables.
Learning that saddles are heavy!
Brushing Mack's back
Courtney was so patient as she taught Bella how to hold the brush, how to walk safely around Mack without scaring him, and how to buckle his saddle.
Evelyn got in on the action, too! Both girls got really brave and were willing to hold their hands to Mack's face and even feed him treats!
They loved it when his lips got feisty and started searching for food!
This was when I knew Bella was learning a good lesson: horses are not just "show up, jump on, and go galloping across a field". This was when Courtney was riding Mack out in the...paddock? show area? Something like that. Bella and Evelyn got bored pretty quickly since they were just watching, and they started playing in the sand. They did get to see Courtney and Mack gallop, which was very exciting for Bella!
Checking out one of the new horses, Valentino. Since he was a new horse to the stable, I threatened Bella's life if she stepped any closer. The girls were fascinated by him!
Petting Anna before we left! We were so thankful that Courtney gave us such a fun opportunity today! It was a good lesson for Bella about the amount of work it takes to be around horses, and also so much fun for them to brush and feed him! So excited to go back soon and let Bella ride!

They Totally Do It On Purpose

Mel and I took the girls to Bruster's for ice cream yesterday. I knew it would probably destroy any hopes of dinner, but it's fun to do special treats when Mel's around. I tried to take some pictures of the event, and this is what I got...

The middle picture, especially, leaves me no doubt that my eldest child was hamming it up for the camera!

To be fair, I did finally get some cute ones, but it took some serious coercing!

Look how picturesque she can be when she wants to!

It was wicked hot and muggy, but the ice cream was delish!

Tuesday, May 27, 2014

Memorial Day

This long weekend was so relaxing! We loved having Steve home and Mel was with us all day, too!
We woke up, made Eggs and Toast Mixed Together (it's a Meyer thing), and Steve decided to set up the slip 'n' slide that Grandma and Grandpa had bought Evelyn for her birthday. It was hilarious and so much fun! Bella was pretty jumpy about it at first, but Evelyn is our brave one, and she was willing as soon as she saw Steve dive down the first time! The girls took most of their turns on Daddy's back, but they ran back and forth through the sprinklers that were on both sides of the slide. I cleaned out their pool and put it at the end of the slide, and Bella spent most of her time in there with her animals. It was a super fun morning!

Steve and Evelyn's faces in this picture are amazing! They had so much fun and Steve was a trooper in the very cold water!

Since Mel couldn't stay for dinner, we decided to have our barbecue for lunch instead - we have cheeseburgers, corn on the cobb, and a strawberry salad with ice cream sandwiches for dessert! All enjoyed under our new patio umbrella ('cause we're fancy like that).

Our back patio is so fantastic. The umbrella is navy blue, and I'm looking forward to adding some cushions that match.

And the magnolias are blooming! Aren't they beautiful!

After lunch, we took naps, got Mel hooked on the new TV series that Steve and I are watching on Netflix, and colored with the girls in the playroom.
Steve cooked up leftover steak and mashed potatoes for dinner, which was divine! And he did the dishes - he's a keeper!
We ended the night with a quick rainstorm and snuggling in bed with the girls, watching movies.

Our Wolf Pack Is Down By Two

So, Trey and Whitney have officially left. I'm still in the very healthy state of denial since it's only been 2 days, but I have a feeling that the more Sundays that go by without Trey teaching, and the more summer afternoons that I don't get to run over to Whitney's are going to make it much more real.
Their last night in Marietta was Saturday, and we got to be together, so that was amazing! We did normal stuff - sent Steve out for Taqueria Tsunami, sat on the back porch and laughed, wiped bloody noses when David and Charli both got smacked in the face by a rogue swing, and talked about life.

It's not like we don't have any other friends - our lives aren't desolate; we have the same small group, the same Sunday School class, and lots of friends who are off for the summer and free to come over for playdates now. It's just hard saying goodbye to your best friends.
I always describe Trey as this awesome trifecta of seminary knowledge, incredible humility, and a great personality that draws people in! He has been a big brother, a spiritual mentor, and a lot of "normal" when I was going crazy over ministry. I haven't agreed with every single decision, and he'll be the first to tell you how flawed he is, but I've just come to love him as much as I could without being a creepy stalker.
And Whit...Whitney is the...realest person I know. Sometimes it makes me laugh at how different we are; I think our few similarities revolve around our mutual love for books and our irreverent views on just about everything else. She takes her children, her husband, and her God very seriously, and you really shouldn't mess with any of them in her presence. She has held my hand when Evelyn was born in our upstairs bedroom and has cried over me when I delivered Lily in the hospital. She has prayed for me, loved my children like her own, and been fiercely loyal. She is my normal when I'm hating the image-hungry stereotypes of East Cobb, and she calls me out when I'm getting a little too image-hungry myself. We have sat on each other's couches and apologized for being so gassy (and also for not trying to hold it in!), we have counseled each other when our husbands were driving us crazy, we have listened to the other talk or vent when they were hurt, and we have seen each other at our very best and very worst of times!
The two of them (and each of the awesome little Sapplings) will be missed very dearly - as partners in ministry and as incredible friends. I get to fly out to Idaho in July, which thrills my little soul to no end! I told Whitney we can survive 8 weeks - we've done it before! So now, I'm counting down the days, sending lots of picture texts, and trying to enjoy all of her happy moments with her as their family travels West.

We love you guys!

Mommy Chuckles

You know you're a mom when you get excited about buying new underwear for your kids. Bella's My Little Pony underwear is literally falling apart, so we went to Target today to pick out new ones. Since school is starting soon, I thought we should maybe pick out ones that weren't ponies or Tinker Bell, so we settled on some bright colors and polka dots. I'm not sure why anyone would see her underwear at school, but on some freak chance that they do, I didn't know if she'd feel embarrassed about having "little girl" designs on her undies. (You really shouldn't be surprised that I'm way over-thinking this. Or that I'm also probably wrong.)
We are in the very earliest, teensiest stages of potty training Evelyn. After rushing it with Bella, I was pretty committed to waiting as long as possible to do anything with Evelyn, but she loves to copy anything Bella does and she's actually thrown a fit when I didn't take her diaper off and let her sit on the potty. She doesn't actually do anything once she's sitting there, but we got the potties out of the attic anyway, just to see what she would do. I know lots of moms who talk about the relief of being out of diapers, and yes, it would be fantastic if Evelyn were potty trained before the newest little human came, but I would much rather change a diaper than have to stop what you're doing in every single store you enter because one of your children had the slightest inkling of having to pee.
Friday morning, Steve was home from work, so we were still laying in bed when the girls woke up and came into our room. The girls usually run to my side right away and start asking for juice or a movie, but this time, Bella went right to Steve's side and whispered, "Daddy, I want your blood." You'd think we let her watch horror films sometimes with the random, creepy stuff that comes out of her mouth.
I always think it's funny to pause sometimes and realize the things that we say as parents that you just never thought would be an issue. I read an article written by a mom with four boys, and her best "mommy comment" was having to tell one of her little boys at the dinner table, "Please stop wrapping your penis around your fork." I pray she wrote that down in his baby book!

Thursday, May 22, 2014

A Snapshot...

Steve's out with Trey and Matt for a little while, so here's a quick view of our home tonight...

I'm sitting in bed, eating fried chicken and chocolate pound cake, and watching Sense and Sensibility.

Evelyn has "snuck" into Bella's bed, and they're chatting away in their room. I'm tired of yelling at them to go to sleep, so I'm sacrificing bedtime for the awesomeness coming from across the hall.

Eventually, I'll have to interrupt them and be stern, but for now, I'm lost in the world of chocolate and Jane Austen.

Sunday, May 18, 2014

Trey And Whitney's Open House

Yesterday was the open house that we hosted for Sapps. It was a long day, but is was soooooo good! Going into it, I was nervous that either extreme would happen - either only 5 people would show up or about 200 would! 

It ended up being perfectly in the middle! The event was 6 hours, but it went quickly! So many wonderful women volunteered to help with food, and the spread was incredible! We had a large, steady flow of people all day long, and we had plenty of good for everyone! 

Our friend, Nicole, helped me plan everything and I just couldn't have asked for a better showing of love and blessings for Trey and Whitney. We had people from all different ages who had come into contact with the Sapps in a large variety of ways. I was also so thankful that our Pastor showed up to offer his support.

All of the kids played so well together throughout the day, and the little humans got their fill of sugar with all of the delicious food that was right at their fingertips. Morgan took pictures all day, but I only have one so far. I'll add a couple of people as soon as I get them. 

I'm so thankful that Trey and Whitney were able to see a true outpouring of all of the lives they have impacted in Georgia before they leave for Idaho. 

Just the "first round" of all the delicious food that everyone contributed! Of the many things that I've come to love and understand about the South, one of my favorites is that Southern women know how to cook! Food is how they love and how they serve. If you ask them to bring one dish, they show up with three. It was such a wonderful blessing for me to have these wonderful ladies volunteer before I even had a chance to ask! 

It was a great day!

Friday, May 16, 2014

Getting Ready For School!

We are one step closer to being ready for the Fall! We've completed registration and curriculum fees and interviews...whew! It's a high-maintenance process to sign your child up for a private school! (Although, I'm pretty sure my mom friends who homeschool could show me how hard it is to plan everything at home!)

The students wear uniforms, and it's been in the back of my head for awhile now, because the uniforms are expensive! I was so excited to hear that the school has a consignment sale where parents can sell their old uniforms that don't fit their children anymore. I had no idea what to expect; I was just praying my $100 was enough! I kept imagining the sale as a mad-dash, free-for-all where people we're going crazy. Whitney was very supportive - I think she wanted to pat my arm and say, "Aw, honey" because of my nervousness going into the sale. 

I showed up a little early this morning, and there was already a line! Don't you love private-school moms? (I'm including myself in that, since I was there early, too!) I was only about the 10th person in line, so I was feeling pretty good. Thankfully, Whitney had already given me the fancy sweater that Bella will need to wear on chapel days, and her future teacher is giving us a chapel jumper (and those two things are the most expensive to buy, so yay!), so I focused on looking for the other two big-ticket items - a nice fleece that they wear during Winter on "normal" days and a few pairs of skorts that I've heard all the little girls love.

I scored some awesome stuff! I assumed the clothes for little kids would be the most sought after, but I was able to find everything I needed and even stop and compare condition and all of that. One of the moms I know who is also a preschool teacher was there to help as a "personal shopper", and I asked her a ton of questions! 

So, here's what I got...1 red fleece jacket, 3 khaki skorts, 3 red polos (they have to wear these on field trips), 2 navy polos, 1 yellow polo, a dress shirt to go under her chapel jumper, khaki pants for Winter (I was told that most of the little girls like to wear their skorts with stockings when it gets cold, but I figured I'd grab a pair of pants, just in case), 2 pairs of "bike shorts" that go under her chapel jumper, and a plaid hair bow. And all of this was only $80.00 - I was under budget! I love being under budget!

I can't imagine the hundreds of dollars I would have spent if this had all been new! Bella will still need a few pairs of shoes - white sneakers for normal days and brown dress shoes for chapel days - but I can buy those anywhere, so I'm waiting until we're closer to school.

I'm so excited to have all of the clothes she needs for the entire year. It's a huge weight off my shoulders. I wasn't sure how I felt about uniforms at first, but I can definitely see the benefit of knowing what she's going to wear each day and not have to worry if she feels like she's fitting in and all of that. Plus, how cute are little kids in uniforms? 

Sometime in July, we'll get the rest of her school supplies, and I'm weirdly excited about that, too! There is just something quintessentially "Fall" about buying crayons and paper and backpacks! The Sapps got Bella a My Little Pony backpack for her birthday, but I have Whitney's permission to look for a different one if Bella ends up needing one a little smaller. 

Bella's goodies from the sale today!

Thursday, May 15, 2014


Steve suggested that my last blog may have come across as though I'm walking around in the depths of despair. Granted, I'm pretty sure only about eight people read this blog, but if you're one of the eight, I'd like to clarify.

It has been almost a year since Lily was born. That year has had many moments of ups and downs, and getting pregnant again was a moment of unbelievable, incredible joy!

I think I just assumed that being pregnant again would act as a stronger balm over the pain of losing a baby than it has. Does that make sense? Being pregnant again was exactly what we prayed for and I am thrilled to have a new little life growing inside of me. I just didn't expect this pregnancy to bring so many...reminders of the last one. 

And lately that pain has just been a little more present. The reminders have been a little more frequent. And that's why I wrote a blog post about it. Hopefully, that helps a little in explaining without making it sound like I'm unable to function. 

One day at a time.

"And underneath are the Everlasting arms."

Wednesday, May 14, 2014

My "Lily" Moments

I thought getting pregnant again would wipe the slate clean. Not wipe her memory away completely, but I thought it would feel more like a fresh start. Instead, being pregnant again just feels like a constant reminder of what we lost.
When someone asks which number this new baby would be, I think about them, especially her. When I look on Facebook, it seems like there are always stories of miscarriages, or babies who made miraculous recoveries because their mothers held them. I feel like I'm thinking about her all the time. I just can't shake it.
I don't feel depressed, but there's always this feeling, a heaviness, that I thought would have gone away by now. I know time will continue to temper those feelings. I know they'll come and go, but right now, they're here. And I guess I'm just a little surprised, because I thought the new pregnancy would be one of those times that the sadness went away.

Monday, May 12, 2014

Little Bits Of Everything

Today was a rare day when I actually remembered to take pictures of normal life. Nothing too exciting happened, but sometimes I like to just write down what we did throughout our day. To remember the little things.
My project for the day...hanging our new coffee mugs under the counter. During our move, our old coffee maker broke, and we never bothered to replace it. Steve drinks coffee, but when he's at home, he tends to like his coffee "fancy", so he has his own espresso machine.
We realized, though, that when people come over, lots of people like coffee! Okay, my story's going way too, basically, we bought a new coffee machine, and I got to buy new mugs! (Yes, we were, like, the only Americans who didn't own coffee cups. Although, technically, we owned a few, but they didn't match, so I needed new ones. Yes, I know that I have control issues...)
The mugs didn't fit in the cupboards, and since they were so simple and pretty, I decided to hang them under the cupboard. I love them!

Steve and I keep talking about how we need to start measuring the girls for fun. Today, we started!

Evelyn was very excited and proud to stand against the wall after Bella did! They're getting so big! Can't wait to add Little #3 to this wall!

I think traveling last week knocked Evelyn out. I found her like this during naptime and she didn't move for almost four hours!

Dinner tonight was chicken and dumplings from scratch. I haven't had this dish since I was a kid; my mom made it the best! I added too much rosemary, but it was still delicious!

Sunday, May 11, 2014

Mother's Day Was Busy!

I told Steve that all I wanted for Mother's Day this year was his help gardening. 

We just got home from Florida yesterday, the man spoils me rotten on a daily basis (especially with all of the pregnancy craving runs!), and as much as I love gifts and surprises, this is not the year to spend a bunch of money just for him to show me that he thinks I'm a good mama. (I had already been saving for new plants, so they didn't come out of our budget as "gifts".)

Being silly before church this morning!

So! Back to gardening and Mother's Day...

Mel met us at church, so we could all hang out together for the afternoon. After church, we grabbed a quick lunch at the delicious Honeybaked Ham Cafe and then headed to Home Depot to pick out some plants for the front yard. 

The previous, previous owners installed some huge flower/shrub beds, so I'm trying to go slow and not get overwhelmed with what we want to change or add to. Today, we just wanted to focus on the area around the front door.

Steve ripping out all of the dead underbrush in one of the beds. This front yard is so fantastic, but there are HUGE shrubs and it could easily look like the "crazy lady who lets everything get overgrown and no one can get in the front door" - kind of yard. We're trying to purge the shrubs that have gotten way out of hand.

This is looking at the front door...the large, green bush had two, dying azaleas on either side, so we ripped them out, trimmed the shrub, and planted two different plants on either end.

We planted a blueberry tree on the left side. I don't really care whether it actually produces blueberries; I just love how the branches seem more "spindly" in contrast to the thick shrub behind it.

On the right side, we planted a Golden Barberry. It looks really tiny here, but it should grow nicely into a yellow-ish shrub! We needed some contrast with all of the thick, dark green vegetation in this yard!

Looking out the front door, we planted (well, Mel planted) a row of red annuals and a rose bush at the end. 

A closer view of the rose bush. It's so hard to wait for plants to get bigger! I wish we could buy them huge from the very beginning! We made a good start, though, and I'm excited for the plants to grow and bloom!


This guy worked so hard! We both have some seriously sore muscles tonight, but it was worth it.

It was such a fun, relaxing productive day, and we loved being together with the girls! I love being their mama and I am so thankful to be the one who gets to watch them grow and learn!

My baby girl

My Squirt

Saturday, May 10, 2014

Baby Announcement Pictures

This first trimester has been overwhelming with two other littles, and I haven't been as excited or up on my baby documenting as I should have been. (Sorry, Little Human #3) When we were finally ready to share our news publicly, we wanted to take some pictures that included the girls, too.
I love how these came out! I'm really hoping some of them will print out well! The girls cooperated with their construction paper hearts much better than I thought they would, and they seemed to sense that it was important for them to be sweet!

 And our silly ones...

Little Human #2 was trying to escape!

Florida Pictures

Steve had a job in Tampa this week, so we got to travel down with him and spend a couple of days with my family.

Don't you wish you looked this sassy in a bathin suit?

Bella's first taste of corn-on-the-cobb. It was delicious! Especially with how much butter and salt Mimi piles on!

Snuggling with Papa

Papa picked up a wading pool for the girls and they had a great time in it all week!

Good ol' fashion fun in the sprinkler!

Evelyn thought it was the best!

Steve graciously let the girls paint his fingernails in a bright array of colors! He's such an awesome Daddy to his girls! I do believe he was saying a prayer at this exact moment that maybe the third baby would be a boy, though!

We painted Bella's and Evelyn's, too, and don't we all look fancy?

Enjoying the beach with Daddy!

Braving the choppy surf!

Seriously, she rolled around in the sand and whinnied like a horse for about 10 straight minutes. I'm going to have the BEST stories for her future boyfriends!

15 weeks down and about a bajillion more to go!