Sunday, December 4, 2016

November 2016

The beginning of November started with a birthday for me! Jake had to go out of town, so he planned a surprise birthday date for the week after. He surprised me with brunch and a massage! It was so fun! I'd never had one before and was having major anxiety about it (DO YOU WEAR CLOTHES OR NOT!?!?!?!) Luckily, it all turned out so great and we now have inside jokes for the next 4 years, thank you. May your Chakra be aligned forever.

We have some great friends that offered to play with Gwen so we could get dinner and we love them and all saw owls in the neighborhood on the night of my birthday. It's a sign that I'm meant to go to Hogwarts, but I'm just too old to be taught now. It would be indecent for me to go and leave everyone.

We took advantage of the incredible November weather and played outside as much as possible!

My sister, Sarah, had to be in Phoenix for a school thing, and we got to play with her youngest daughter and son all day! Marshall and Melanie were a fantastic addition to our day! I learned early on that everyone needed to touch their own blanket or else someone would be upset. It was more a game than true sadness, but it was great! We made forts, and played outside at the park. Someone asked me if all the kids were mine--I said yes. It was great.

We got family pictures, and I'm so happy with them! I met Kylie in Flagstaff, but we both grew up in Mesa! She went to Mesa High and she introduced us to her sister, our nanny Kyndra! Full circle! Anyway, Kylie took Jake's graduation announcement pictures and took these family pictures! We love her and she is excellent. Like. . . Gwen didn't sit still once and she still got great images! HALLELUJAH!

We got to see Mike, Kendle, and Emery Webster again! We met them in Flagstaff, too, and we love and miss them almost daily! Their sweet daughter is a little bit older than Emily, and I have great plans of a deep friendship for Emily and Emery!

Thanksgiving was great! We started the day off being treated to Moana (thanks GramE and Papa!) and popcorn, and I loved it! We bought the soundtrack while walking out of the theater, and we have it on repeat all day, every day! After the movie, we went to pick up our fruit salad for the Uchytil feast! Emily was a LOT fussy because she was getting over being sick, plus she got four vaccinations and had no nap because we were at the movies, so that homegirl was so sad! Grandma Vonnie is so sweet and would just take her when she cried! So sweet. We didn't last long there, and went back home to get Emily in bed. When she woke up, it was time for the Ellsworth feast! The Binghams came down from New Mexico and they did ALL the food! It was so fancy! I wish I had pictures because food was EVERYWHERE and I ate all of it and weigh 3,000 pounds. After dinner, Caroline set up Minute to Win It games, and we had a great time!

On Black Friday, I took my oldest nieces out for Black Friday shopping. Cordelia and Cassidy are both so funny and beautiful and smart! It's almost intimidating to see how strong and independent they are spiritually and mentally, but I love it and I want my daughters to have those qualities! After finishing up, they offered to babysit, so Jake and I went to see Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them. J.K. Rowling is my best friend, and I now need her to write up the screenplays for Ilvermorny. Do yourself a favor and go read about the US school for magic and just swoon in its glory.

Random Gwen fact. Gwen loves Sofia the First. Sofia has a sister named Amber, and lately Gwen will call Emily Amber! It is hilarious and so cute and I tell her, "No, this is Emily. Say Emily!" So she'll say "Emy!" Then I'll say, "Gwen, what is your baby's name?" and she immediately responds, "Ammer!" HA! I love it.

I have to add a thought. We have the best family. My daughters have the best aunts, uncles, cousins, grandpas and grandmas. I feel so much love and support on both sides. Jake and I constantly talk about how we got SO lucky to have the in-laws we have, respectively.  I'm so thankful that Gwen and Emily will have so much love and support throughout their entire lives! We love you, family!

Kyndra and Gwen made Jack-o-Lantern cheese crisps!

Fanny is losing her dark hair!!!!

Just Gwen being a big kid! Where did Baby Mini go!?

Zen on the swing.


Mini Mom and Mom

Mini Dad and Dad


Thanksgiving! Thanks for the picture, Thad!

IT'S A MIRACLE! She slept at church!!!!!

Birthday dinner at Nando's!

Gwen and her baby.
She loves her camping chair.

I don't know if this will play, but she's so cute.
Waiting at the resort for our massages!

Jake nearly fell asleep, thank you.

I mean. . . she just is living her life as fully as can be.


Better Besties.

Emily and her bibdana uniform. Verity and her scrub uniform.

Gwen, Marshall, and Melanie, all touching their own blankets, only.

PARTY PIZZA! Venezia's does not disappoint with the party size.

Emily Rose is Four Months Old!

Emily got double ear infections in November! It was so sad! Gwen NEVER had a single ear infection, so when Emily was literally screaming, I was so confused and unable to do anything! We got her in for a sick visit nice and quick, and had antibiotics almost immediately. Let me tell you--I should get an award for giving her COLD, bubblegum flavored medicine twice a day for 7 days. I thought Gwen was stubborn, but when I was trying to get her to take this medicine, she outdid Gwen's stubbornness REAL quick! Ha! We got it done, and both ears are happy and healthy! She simultaneously had a cold, and she struggled eating, so at one point she was up to 15 pounds, but now she's just hovering at 14.

We needed to get bibdanas (bib/bandana mix!) specifically for her drooling! She could soak an outfit in a matter of hours with just drool!

Emily realized she is the cutest and loves talking to herself in the mirror. She doesn't like being talked to when she's admiring herself, and will give dirty looks pretty promptly after making that mistake.

Fanny lovessss music and hates the sun being in her eyes. She also hates being put in the car seat and stroller, but doesn't mind the outings associated with the seat and stroller. What a conundrum.

October 2016

Early in the month, Jake and I went on a group date with some friends to an escape room. It's essentially a series of "riddles" that you get clues to to determine the outcome of a script. It was really fun and we all got dinner at Serrano's, too!

Gwen learned that she could still climb into the crib, and has since been doing this on an almost daily schedule.

Krispy Kreme had their annual "Dress Like a Pirate" day and our sweet nanny, Kyndra, dressed Gwen up and took the girls! Gwen is an excellent pirate!


One morning, after I had gotten every one packed up in the car to run errands, I turned on my car and realized that the battery was going to die!  Worse yet, Jake and my parents were all out of town--because of this, I drove to the closest place I could think of and got a new battery. Gwen loved being in the waiting room and seeing the guys working on our car. She was singing and dancing, and we all had a great morning!

Shepherd Junior High was doing a college night and they had a lot of colleges and vocational schools visiting, plus some food trucks! We walked the few blocks to get to the school to see the commotion, and ended up petting a few snakes and getting waffles at the food trucks!

I don't have any pictures of Halloween, but it was wonderful! We got to go to downtown Mesa and trick or treat at the local shops, and then we went home and ate lunch. When I was taking Gwen's beautiful owl costume off, it ripped! The seam of the strap tore completely off! It was so sad to me! Not to fret, after naps I put Gwen in her Krispy Kreme pirate outfit and we tricked and treated for about an hour and got a huge stash, plus we got to know a lot more of our sweet neighbors! We have quite a few snowbirds in our cul-de-sac thing, and it was fun talking to them all! Gwen would twirl and tell them "Good mornin!" and they'd give her more candy. We had a great system! Jake stayed home and handed out candy and bouncy balls, and we just thought we were the coolest! I really can't believe that I have no pictures of that day! How sad.
 *Oh my gosh! Jake had Halloween pictures! They're down below!

We asked if they snake had a name, and this guy laughed and said, No way! Haha!

Crib bandit Gwen!

At the car garage! She loved this place!

Pre Earrings!
She is just so pleased with her new jewelry.

SO CUTE!!!!!!!

Our date night! Also, my mouth is clearly opened dumb.

They love each other.

Jammy Besties!

Waiting at the food truck!

Gwen loved playing with this boy at the park. He kept calling Gwen "Baby" and would say, "Come over here, little Baby!" She loves him.

She's a dreamy sleeper.

Jake=suns player. Me and Emily=pumpkins. Gwen=pirate. Fred=blurry scary thing

Halloween 2016

Emily Rose is Three Months Old!

Emily is such a sweet girl. At three months she weighed 14 pounds! She is always in the "average" category of height, weight and head circumference, but she is anything but average in personality! She loves watching Gwen, and loves when Gwen talks to her for minutes at a time. Gwen loves putting Emily's cheeks in her hands and saying "Cute bebe!" Emily is definitely more of an observer, but will talk when no one else has anything to say. She loves bath time and have made it part of her nightly routine, but she still hates getting her clothes put on afterwards! 

Friday, October 7, 2016

September 2016

This September was an interesting one. Jake was hired by another medical sales company and had to go to training. For his past jobs, training has been a week or two. This company sent Jake to Texas for 3 weeks. Had I not JUST had a baby, we probably would've all gone with him, but I knew that wasn't going to be a great idea, so he left and we girls stayed at home.

The first few weeks were the hardest. Emily wasn't sleeping well..and by well, I mean she wasn't sleeping like a two year old like I would've loved--she slept perfectly normal for a month old baby, but was nursing like a champ. Our nights were like this:Emily goes to sleep, bathe Gwen, put Gwen to bed, Emily wakes up. Put Emily down, Gwen wakes up from terrifying nightmare (poor baby), get Gwen back in bed, Emily wakes up. . . I mean. . . I was a true zombie.

But we did it! By the second week we were all doing things like clockwork! I knew when people would wake up, I knew how to maximize time, I knew how to get things done.

On the first Tuesday of September, we had a nanny start working here. Her name is Kyndra, and SHE IS THE BEST. I swear she is how I kept sane while Jake was gone. When I first came home after work, my house was clean, Emily was sleeping, Gwen was happy coloring, and Fred was playing with a ball on the floor. It was so comforting to 1.Go to work and get some sanity and 2.Know my people were being loved the entire time I was gone. I've said it once, and here it is AGAIN, but we have been SO immensely blessed in finding excellent caretakers for our family.

I went back to work, as I previously mentioned. My boss is the greatest and told me to take as much maternity leave as I wanted, so I asked for 12 weeks. Well, I got to be 6 weeks post Emily's birthday and I was ready. I love what I do, and I love my coworkers, and I love my patients, and being a stay at home mom is the most difficult thing ever. So I called Dr. Price and asked him if I could come back sooner, and he said "Of course!" Needless to say, work has been great and I'm happy to be back.

Going back to work stressed me out in thought because I worried about how Emily would do with bottles and nursing. If you remember, I pumped for Gwen 100% because she wouldn't nurse after I had to go to school 3 days postpartum. I didn't want this to be the case for Em, so I stressed because that's all I could do. Turns out it was unnecessary stressing! E takes bottles well and when I am home she nurses great! We had some struggle nursing recently, but I chalked it up to congestion and a growth spurt. She is so great!

I started working out with a trainer that I went to high school with! Jessica is so strong and she had a baby just a few weeks after me! I was thankful to be able to go work out while Jake was away because I could get out some stress and pick up some energy. My parents were the best and watched both kids while I'd go for an hour, two times a week. And when I'd go to get the girls, they'd feed us all dinner! It was so helpful and kind. 

Jake came home at the end of the month. I was so proud of how I handled things while Jake was gone, and I was sure I'd be this statuesque and haughty woman when he came home. In fact, we were outside playing in the hose when I heard him pull up, and I thought, "This was no big deal. I could handle this a dozen more times." But when that man opened the gate and Gwen heard him and ran and jumped in his arms, and then he scooped me up in a hug, I turned into a big, teary-eyed mess. Pride-Gone. Relief-Everywhere. Even now just writing this makes my eyes watery. It was so hard to be a single parent. It was the hardest thing I've ever done. And I could do it again. But I don't ever have to again and for that I am so thankful.

The day after Jake got back, some of our most favorite friends came to visit! Dr. Chris finished dental school, and they moved to New Mexico from Pennsylvania, and we missed them so much!!! We went to Krazy Air and Cafe Rio and it was magical!

They day after THAT, Jake's younger brother Sean got married, so we zoomed up to Pinetop to help with set up and anything that required us, really. It was so fun. We quadded around after the wedding, and it was just a great way to celebrate having J back. Also, that is the day that started Emily's rough nursing week. But alas, we persevered and all is well.

Gwen is talking so much!!!! Funny quote of her day:She was holding my hairbrush, and I was asking if she would bring it to me. She said, "No, Mom! It's not yours, Mom! Not yours!" But her "yours" are pronounced "yerz". She's the best.

Side note story: Krispy Kreme had their annual pirate day, and if you dress like a pirate, you'll get a free dozen donuts! Kyndra bought and brought Gwen some great clothes and took her, and the picture will kill you with cuteness, so prepare now.
The moral of September:Have a great boss. Find a wonderfully kind nanny. Appreciate your husband. Work out. Sleep when little people sleep.

Burrito baby

Gwen loves looking at and opening movies from here.

Jake was scaring Gwen by just walking past the Halloween stuff! HA!

Cousin love at Krazy Air!

I tried to style her hair to a side, and this fluff is the result.

Gwen's first day at dance class.

Emily working on her neck exercises.

When we tell G to put on her shoes, she always puts on mine instead.

Gwen at Krispy Kreme! CUTEST PIRATE EVER.

Matthew and Aaron, with Jake and Gwen!

REUNITED! I never took any pictures, and should have.

Best friends!

Gwen loves holding E's hand in the car!

They both slept so well on the way to Pinetop for the wedding!

Family Selfie after quadding. It's blurry, but we're all so happy. 3 seconds after this, Em threw up everything in her belly all over everyone.

Playing in Grandma and Grandpa Denham's backyard

Emily and I were quadding, and G was jumping. This was so fun.

Em tried on beanies at a boutique and she knew she looked fabulous.

G's favorite and daily activity:playing in the water.

We did a lot of FaceTime calling while Jake was gone in Texas. These two are twins!