Wednesday, July 16, 2014

Vacation Pictures And Memories!

This post is going to have a ton of pictures, so here we go!

Vacation was basically awesome. It wasn't always relaxing and it wasn't always these perfect family moments, but it fulfilled what Steve and I were hoping for - family memories, low stress, and no agenda. We got lots of "just us" time. 

(Not just Steve and I, because, let's be honest, alone time is impossible with little humans in your house, but it was still nice to just be our little family.)

It was Steve's first time of going to the zoo with the girls!

(I had to take this picture, because Whitney has an insane fear of birds.)

It was way too hot to use the firepit outside, but Daddy whipped up some mean s'mores over the stove.

Steve took, like, eight pictures of the three of us, and this was the best one. Clearly, we do not excel at candid photos.

We ran in the hose A LOT! They loved doing this with Steve!

And we celebrated Cow Appreciation Day! I LOVE this day! I don't know what happened to me, but having children has seriously upped my cheesy factor!

I stole these shirt ideas from a girlfriend who did it last year. Evelyn's was my favorite!

We had to include Little Man; hence the sign on my belly!

Daddy wasn't willing to have me paint his face with eye liner, but he DID agree to a sing on his back!

Steve and Evelyn (and a very curious little neighbor) enjoying their ice cream.

Out to breakfast to get Mommy some New York-style bagels that I'd been craving!

Playing in the church parking lot with bikes. Daddy controlled the camera today, so he didn't get to be in the pictures.

Making forts in our new teepee...

It was a fun, relaxing two weeks with our girls. I definitely wouldn't want to miss vacations with our larger families every Summer, but it worked well with our crazy schedules and our budget this year.

Steve leaves on Sunday for New York, so we are relaxing this last weekend before the crazy starts!

Tuesday, July 15, 2014

An "E" Memory

These pictures are SO going on Evelyn's "Senior Wall"! (If that's still a thing when she's 18.)
While everyone was waiting for breakfast, Steve convinced Evelyn to copy some of his silly faces. This was the result...they're so fabulous!
I mean, look at this face!

It may be my new favorite picture of Evelyn!

Friday, July 11, 2014

Daddy Daughter Dates!

One of the things Steve really wanted to do on vacation was take the girls out on a date. This was the first time that Evelyn got her own date, too!

Bella's turn was first, and she chose McDonald's (shocking!). We let the girls choose whatever they wanted to wear, and I didn't try to change a thing! Bella wanted to wear her fanciest dress; when I let her choose her shoes, she started out with church shoes, and ended up with mismatched flip-flops. 

It doesn't matter what time of year it is, Bella loves having her hair down and all wild. I normally don't let her keep it down when it's so hot out, but for her special date, she got special privileges! 

Steve said she was sweet and hyper and talkative the entire time, and they loved it! Once she got to McDonald's, all Bella cared about was drinking a "grown-up" size Coke. Steve said she only ate a handful of fries, but went back for seconds on a Coke. 

This morning was Evelyn's turn. Ever since Bella's date for lunch yesterday, Evelyn has learned the word "date", and she's been saying it over and over! We decided to plan her date as soon as possible to save us some sanity! 

Evelyn wanted to wear one of her colorful Easter dresses and picked out her dirty, muddy sneakers to complete the outfit. I literally had to chase her around the living room just to run a brush through her hair! With her yelling, "No, Mommy! No!" It was pretty funny! 

She refused to look at the camera, but she did have fun while Daddy made some silly faces! 

Snuggling with Daddy to get out of a photo-op.

Daddy making silly faces to try and get a smile!

Giving up and just enjoying the snuggles!

They headed to Dunkin' Donuts this morning, where Evelyn got good and covered in pink frosting!

I love how Steve makes these special times with the girls a priority, and it's even sweeter to see them look forward to it! I can't wait to see how these dates develop in the future!

Thursday, July 10, 2014

What Just Happened?

I realized today that we have one more week of "normal" around here. Or maybe I should say, one more week of no schedules and nowhere to be. Steve goes back to work next week and the girls and I go back to our usual "routine". After that, life gets some crazy!

Steve leaves to complete a class in New York City, and before he even gets back, I leave to spend a week in Idaho with our church's missions trip. (AND SEE WHITNEY!!!!!)

Once I get home from Idaho, we'll have three days together before Steve leaves for a job in Nashville. Oy vey. I am not looking forward to only seeing him 3 days in three weeks. (Wait. Really?) This will definitely be our "worst" travel overlap yet!

By the time we're all back home and together, we'll be preparing for school to start and Bella to go to kindergarten. I know it's cliche, but when did that happen? Bella will start school, and from here on out, it's an everyday thing!

I'm so thankful that she's only doing half-day kindergarten, but I'm not sure I'm ready for her official education to begin! As much as the girls can be exhausting, especially during pregnancy, I definitely feel that stereotypical anxiety about leaving my first-born. Okay "leaving" may be dramatic - she's going for half a day and the school is a fraction of a mile down the road - it's just hard not to look at school as "no turning back". 

I am so excited for her to learn new things and get to participate in all of the fun "school" things that she may have missed out on when I kept her home this past year, but my Mommy heart is, once again, very thankful that she's only going half a day and that we both get to make this transition slowly! 

Wednesday, July 9, 2014

One More Project...

It's too tempting to have Steve home and not tackle some fun projects! 

Since my motivation and energy levels were not supporting my desire to paint the crib, I decided to pause on the nursery and finish up the girls' room instead. 
I really wanted to add curtains, but have you bought curtains recently? They're freakishly expensive. So, here's my cheat...I bought a shower curtain instead. Target sells gorgeous, fabric shower curtains and they're easily half the price of what it would cost to buy new curtains. It doesn't work for every room, but for the girls, my only priorities were colorful and inexpensive. 

Aren't they cute? Since the house had nice, wooden blinds when we moved in, I only wanted the curtains for decorations, not privacy. I cut the shower curtain in half and arranged it so that the hemmed sides were facing the inside. Done!

The walls above their beds used to have gallery walls, but they tend to knock into the pictures a lot (especially Evelyn), so I was looking for alternatives. 

I saw an idea that used circle wall decals in different colors to create a "cascading confetti" look and it was beautiful! But sometimes you have to use what you have, and I already had these pom-poms from Evelyn's 1st birthday party, so I fastened them to the wall instead for a 3-D effect. 

It wasn't my "dream design", but I ended up liking the color! I think I'll put some of their pictures up in between the pom-poms eventually, but I'm trying not to rush it until I know exactly what I want.

They also really a needed a little table between their bed. We didn't have a short table, but buying a new end table wasn't in our budget. I tried a few different desks and tables that didn't have a home yet from the old house, and their old, playroom bench seemed like a good fit. 

The cushion was badly stained, so I took it off, wiped the whole thing down, and had Steve drill a hole in the back for the lamp cord. It fit the space perfectly! 

The room looks so much more finished now and I love the colors! It's girly without being too pink, which is a good compromise between my normal love of neutrals (which pregnancy seems to be changing!) and Bella's desire to have everything in "rainbow colors" (Sweet baby Jesus).

Sunday, July 6, 2014

This Time Around...

Have to document some things for the Little Man before I forget...

I know that everyone says that every baby is different, but I always seem to forget until I actually experience it.

For this guy, I've just gotten fatter quicker! It feels funny to even say that I already feel so bulky, because I know that I've got so much worse coming!

Heartburn is also going to be my death. It doesn't matter what I eat or when, once I get in bed, it feels like I'm going to throw up fire. (Sexy, isn't it?) My bottle of TUMS and I have a very close friendship. 

In other news, we bought an outfit for Little Man to come home from the hospital in. It's so cute! It's just a little, light grey pants outfit, but you forget how tiny babies are when they're first born! Whenever I imagine a baby, I picture, like, a 3-month old, but when Steve and I started looking at some baby clothes, it was like, "Aaawww! Look how cute the itty bitty widdle clothes are!" (Yes, I may have said that in a baby-talk voice.)
So cute, right?
Mel found this little hat at an arts festival a few weeks ago. The woman who owns the company hand-stitches all of her clothing, so that was a cute touch!
We did some work on the nursery this past weekend. Mostly just cleaning it all out. We have a lot of our colors picked out and I have the ideas in my head. These are some of my inspiration pictures...

I love the gallery wall above this crib! (I'm a sucker for a good gallery wall.) I also want to paint our wooden crib grey. The walls are taupe (of course) and we have a dark wooden rocking chair, so I'd like to paint the crib grey as a contrast. 
I love all of the vintage touches in this room! I like the way they made it masculine for a boy without too much of a "baby" look. The nautical touches inspired the sheets that I bought, but I'm not doing too many more "boat-y" things. 

I love this picture! I love the tattoos and the vintage feel to it. I really want to print it out and put it on Little Man's wall! Steve can't have his baby boy without some tattoo love in his room! And the colors are just awesome! 

Friday, July 4, 2014

July 4th Fun

Long story short...Steve and I are terrible at being patriotic. Or at least patriotic festivities. Steve hates crowds and I hate parades; clearly, July 4th awesomeness is a little lost on us.

I love the idea of parades, but with small kids, the reality ends up being much more hot, whiny, and overwhelming. Since the girls are too young to really care (next year, I don't think we'll be as lucky), we kept them busy with other fun things today.

We ended up going to THREE different pools today! Our first stop was a splash pad in Roswell. A splash pad is basically a cement area with fountains and sprinklers shooting water up through the ground for kids to play with. (Parents seem to like it because it pretty much eliminates the risk of drowning. Always a win in a parent's book.) We have one near us, but it's not open in the morning, so we decided to check this one out. It was a bit of a drive, but seemed like a fun excursion. 

As you can see, the girls loved it! Steve and I were kind if like, "Eh", but only because it's much smaller than the one near us and there was no pool area.

Bella and Evelyn had a great time running through the sprinklers, and then we went to Five Guys for lunch. So good! Their fries alone are worth the money! After lunch, Evelyn and I needed a nap, so Steve took Bella to the splash pad and pool close to us for some "dolphin exercises"! (Steve told me that he had to lift Bella in and out if the water like a dolphin jumping through the water. Smiles!)

Once Evelyn and I finally woke up, we spent a couple of hours crashing as a family.

Playing with Daddy's motorcycle helmet.

Bella got to feel Little Man moving for the first time. I love the look of surprise on her face!

We met up with Matt, Caroline, and Mel around dinnertime and played in our third pool of the day. We were the only ones there, so we had a great time, relaxing and playing! We only stayed for an hour or so, and then headed home for dinner on Mommy and Daddy's bed!

It wasn't exactly patriotic, but we had a good day anyway! I still felt guilty at the end of the day for not joining in on all of the events going on around town, but Steve and I convinced ourselves that watching Air Force One in bed was super honoring of America!

Thursday, July 3, 2014

Our "Stay-cation" Experiment

Our Summer vacations have always been spent with my family in Florida or with Steve's family up in Oscoda, Michigan. This year (because of a few different factors), we decided to try staying at home for Steve's week off. 

Our main motivation was how much traveling Steve does now, and how appealing it was to think about having him home for ten straight days. We figured we could take the girls to the zoo, play at the pool, go out to lunch - all of the things Daddy doesn't normally get you be a part of.

Our vacation doesn't officially start until next week, but Steve is working from home this week, so we've already had a chance to do some fun family things together!

I promised Steve that the entire vacation wouldn't be filled with projects, but this first week seemed like a good time to focus on some areas of the house. On Monday  we killed it in the playroom! It was a lot of work, but totally worth it! 

I didn't take any pictures, but my main project on Tuesday was getting all of our baby clothes out of the attic and purging them to sell or give away. It was a lot! I made a pile for Bella to keep as memories, a pile for Evelyn to keep, and everything else went into a pile to pass on. 

I was able to sell about $100 of clothes at a consignment shop to use as money for the Little Man when I see some things I'd like to have for the nursery, and I put together 5 trash bags for a friend at church who's having her first girl about a month after Little Man is due.

It was an overwhelming job, but fun to go through the girls' clothes and remember things like their baby dedication at church or their first Christmas dress. I loved seeing their tiny little outfits that they wore home from the hospital! (Or in Evelyn's case, wore to bed her first night home.)

The rest of the week...

The girls love their new playroom set-up and are playing really well. Steve caught Bella "brushing" Evelyn's hair and asking her, "Is that okay? Did I pull too tight?" It was really sweet.

We spent some time at the pool this morning and they loved playing with Daddy! 

I've never been pregnant in the summer before, but since this is out last baby, I decided to be bold and buy a bikini. It seemed like a good idea in the Target dressing room anyway...

I took this picture before we left and sent it to Mel for a confidence boost. (Excuse the teenage-girl selfie. And while I'm making excuses, we were about to walk out the door, which is why my sunglasses are already on; I am not auditioning for The Jersey Shore.) I mixed and matched green bottoms with a polka dot top. I have to admit that I totally love it and I like trying new things with this last pregnancy!

Taking turns to jump to Daddy!

Best jumping face ever! And I'm really impressed with her form!

Evelyn's idea of jumping is walking to the edge and lunging forward.

The baby bump is getting larger and I really need to re-do my toenail polish.

Have I said yet how much the girls LOVED having Daddy home? Today was exactly what I imagined when we first talked about the idea of staying home.

Silly faces before heading home for naptime.

Our post-nap treat was ice cream from Bruster's. Bella and Evelyn's favorite is "Our Favorite Purple Dinosaur" - it's basically vanilla ice cream colored purple.

We may not have thought this through...

Definitely a fun treat for them, and a fun chance for Mommy to clean up when we got  home!

"I'm okay, Mommy. I'm just practicing my dance moves."

So far, it's been a great week at home!