motherhood calls.

I bought the cutest black floppy hat the other week. I have a suitcase partly packed with a maternity swimsuit and other sorts. I went through my summer dresses to see what I could wear with my ever-expanding belly.

All of this in anticipation of my big trip to Jamaica, that has been planned for months. Originally, my dad was going to take my younger sister with him on this all-inclusive, six day trip to a gorgeous hotel right on the ocean. (For her big 16th birthday). But then his plans changed and he was going to be in Africa, so someone else needed to go with her. With a smile, I gladly volunteered. Free trip to the Caribbean. Yes, please.

Now, let me go back to my doctor appointment I had last Thursday. We went up to Indianapolis, to our specialist to check on the blood clot that was found on my placenta four weeks ago. Great news--the blood clot hadn't increased in size (nor did it decrease, but it changed shape for the better to give the baby more room), and the baby is still growing great, about a 1-1.5 weeks ahead of schedule, in fact. They were concerned that the baby's growth would be affected, but they no longer have that concern and I can be monitored by my regular doctor from here on out. I also got the "go ahead" from the nurse to travel out of the country.

Then my regular 24-week doctor appointment came yesterday morning. My doctor reviewed the results from Thursday and had a couple of other tests he wanted me to do. Then I told him I was going out of the country. And the red flag appeared. He advised me not to leave because if something was to happen (even if it is a low risk) I wouldn't get the proper care I needed. So at this point I was feeling extremely stressed and frustrated because of the extra tests I had to do and hearing Jamaica wasn't a good idea. All I heard was  "Going on vacation to relax and do nothing, sleep in, and have food made for you, isn't in your best interest." What?!

I have been praying about my decision almost non-stop since yesterday morning. There was more than just the blood-clot concern factor, I had some other stuff weighing on me. I asked God to give me peace and discernment about my decision. I realized I was having a lot of anxiety about leaving my girls for six days, even though they were going to be very well taken care of (the hubs was taking extra time off and I had family lined up to watch them during the day). And they probably wouldn't even remember the time I left them to go on this trip. But the thought of not seeing them for that long, nor have the luxury to just call anytime I wanted, was too much for me. I missed them like crazy and I hadn't even left yet.

I had to make a decision today. And I'm feeling really at peace with it. Ultimately, it was my decision, not the doctors. Andrew had even encouraged me to go, he knows how bad I could use this most amazing vacation. But, right now. Motherhood calls. I'm trading free food made for me at every meal, sleeping in, and relaxing on the beach looking out at the clear water, for my everyday tasks of cleaning, making meals, putting puzzles together, running errands, and playing with my sweet babies. (Whew, that last sentence was a doozy to type.)

Thankfully, my oldest sister is going to take my place and go with my younger sister. They are going to have so much fun, I'm quite excited for them. I may have also called the hubs and requested we go to the ocean very very soon as a family. The ocean is one of my very favorite spots. I also told him he has to make one meal next week (which he does not cook), so that I can pretend I'm in Jamaica getting food made for me.  He said that would be just fine.

Motherhood is definitely a sacrifice. But one that has the most intangible rewards. Ever.

Motherhood calls and I'm answering it with a smile.


bump watch {23 weeks}.

[Let's pretend a week hasn't passed since I last blogged. Also, let's pretend the last storm we had didn't do any damage to our house (it isn't extensive, but it is damage nonetheless). Or that one of vehicles had to get repaired this week. And another one needs to go in the shop. Let's just focus on baby bump, shall we?]

I have been wanting to post a weekly picture here of the growing bump. Now I'm 23 (almost 24) weeks into it, and I'm just now committing to it. Also, pictures are deceiving most of the time. I feel so much bigger than most of my belly pictures. Wait, I am bigger than what it looks. The appetite is getting out of control. No doubt. I wear black. A lot. I think it is a good "I just ate a second lunch" hider.

(iphone pics, because the dear DSLR is still broken)

I love, love this picture. Not because of me, but because {unintentionally} there is a picture of just my beautiful mama and me and bump in the pic. We will never have a three generation picture, but this, this is good. And makes my heart swell.

There isn't too much news on the baby-front. Except I'm feeling good. And I'm getting to the point where bending over isn't really easy anymore. And flipping sides in bed is starting to require a heck of a lot of momentum. I do feel the mister move all the time. Which is pretty much one of my favorite things, ever. The cravings aren't crazy. Except I just love food in general. A lot. Mexican is probably still top on my list. Queso dip. Yes. Except it better be white, or I may ask the waitress to take it back. (I ordered Queso dip at a restaurant and it came out mainly with beans and red sauce. Huh? Sorry Charlie.) By this time with both girls, I had a nursery planned and even painted. This time around, I don't plan on making a nursery until we move. We are hoping to get our house back on the market sometime in February. But, I do have some fun Pinterest ideas stored away. Think industrial. Orange. Deep grey. Cork board. Maps. Oh, yes!


his name.

It's tempting to have a dozen of kids just so we can name them. Except three is enough for us. For now. For sure. And it has been so fun coming up with a name for each one. Somehow by every twenty-week ultrasound, when the gender is revealed, we always have a name ready, boy or girl. Audrey was going to be a Jackson, and Naomi would have been Nolan. This time around if we were having a girl she would have been Violet. (Someone use that name, I just love it.)

But, since He is in fact, a BOY (eek!), we have come up with (what I think) is the perfect boy name. If we are friends on Facebook (which I hope we are), then you got to see the most adorable video of Audrey revealing her brother's name. [I'm having trouble uploading it onto here, sorry.]

For now on, instead of calling him boy or baby #3 on here, he will be known as...


Don't you just love it? I'm bias, but I think it is a pretty teriffic name. I like how strong it sounds. We picked Lincoln after going through quite a bit of boy names. I wanted something classic and easy to pronounce (I grew up with a name being read wrong 75% of the time, so I didn't want that for my kiddos). Some other picks of mine (not necessarily Andrew's) were Jasper and Porter. His middle name, Wayne, is a family name, the middle name of Andrew, his dad, and his grandpa. We are up for calling him Linc as well for a nickname.

There is little Lincoln, 22.5 weeks along!

I can't believe I'm more than half way done. Sometimes I get quite excited about it and then other times I'm like, whoa, slow down pregnancy I'm not ready for another one yet. This week has been quite hormonal for me with my patiences running thin. I thought I was suppose to be in the energetic/nesting stage right now, but apparently I'm still really tired all the time. I'm hoping something kicks in soon, I have a lot to do before little Lincoln arrives!


the weekend.

[Being that my DSLR is broken and I attempted to use a super-duper old camera in my last post and now those pictures make me cringe from the grainy-ness, I will be using my iphone for pictures for the time being. Crazy to think my phone takes better pictures than one of my cameras!]

We have had such crazy {wonderful} weather here. Like in the 50's for days. It is such a tease, because I know before March comes, a winter storm or two or three will be here. In the meantime, we are soaking in these beautiful days. On Friday afternoon, we took the girls to the zoo. And they didn't even have to wear big coats! In January! It was great fun and the animals were really active. Especially those tigers. Naomi was not intimidated at all by them. Audrey, on the other hand, took a step back pretty quickly when the tiger came up to the window.

For the next six weeks, we are the "parents" to my little sister, while my dad is away on a missions trip in Africa. And his first weekend away, happened to fall on her big 16th birthday. Usually, I like to think of myself still as young and somewhat stylish. But after spending the weekend with a bunch of 16 year old girls, I am suddenly feeling very old, and well, frumpy. Ha. I spent my weekend hauling around my sister and her youngin' friends out of town for a day of shopping and hosting a bonfire for them on Friday night.

And now, let me throw this randomness in here.  It is usually told that girls are more expensive, right? Well, this boy already has me eating like crazy. All.Time.Time. If this is any indication of his appetite, we are in trouble with food expenses! Now excuse me, the fridge is calling my name.


small style {tea collection}.

Ahhh, I'm finally getting back to linking up with Small Style over at Mama Loves Papa. Small Style is so fun because you get to see a bunch of cuties.

I tend to put the same thing on the girls over and over. If it is comfortable for them and layerable. [Kids get hot and cold so quickly, don't they?] Especially now that Audrey has an opinion about what she wears-- 75% of the time she wears princess dress up clothes. But sometimes I can talk her into something I little bit warmer for these winter months. She never complains about the Tea Collection dresses she has. I bought them about a month ago when they were on sale. And now they are even at a better discount-- you can get an extra 25% off the sale prices by using the code 25OFFSALE at check-out! It ends on Sunday so be sure to check it out. I even bought baby boy a couple of super cute t-shirts.

[Please excuse the super grainy photos. I'm using a camera that is about 8 years old since I broke my DSLR on Sunday!]

Audrey is wearing:
Hairclip: Zuzii Etsy
Dress: Tea Collection
Leggings: Crew Cuts
Socks: Target
Boots: Thrifted, Osh Kosh
 Naomi is wearing:
Dress: Tea Collection
Leggings: Misha Lulu via the Surplus Store
Socks: Target
Shoes: Target
Bracelet: Sophie's Closest Etsy
Sisterly love.

I'm definitely not being compensated for mentioning Tea Collection. But when I see a great sale, I love to share! 


it's a new year.

We were able to slip away for the night on New Year's Eve with some of our closest friends. We have hung out every NYE for the last four years. Now that's pretty awesome, especially considering we all have kids. I slipped on my sparkly top and heels and even hit the dance floor. You can't stop this 21 week belly from busting a move. I've been known to break it down on the dance floor even at 7 months pregnant.

{Side note: I went to get a trim last week and ended up getting about 4-5 inches cut off. I have super healthy hair now, but I would be lying if I said I didn't miss my long hair.]

I can't believe it's January. And it's 2012. No seriously, I sound so cliche, but really. This is the year our baby boy will be born and hopefully we sell and find a home that we will be in for a very very long time.

Do you do New Year's Resolutions? It seems nowadays everyone likes to call them goals. Whichever way you want to call it, I like to always refresh at the beginning of the year and reflect back on things I would like do more or less of. I just looked over my goals from last year; looks like I need to revisit them throughout the year, some I think I accomplished others I definitely did not. This year I have a couple of goals in mind--one of the main things I would like to do is be more purposeful. More purposeful with my kids, my husband, my family, and friends. To spread myself a bit for someone else. Send that card for no reason. Deliver a meal to a friend in need. Leave cookies on a doorstep. Play with my kids. Like really play. Put down my phone and play. Sounds silly, but I get so distracted with technology. A quick second here and there and it adds up. Another goal of mine is to be more savvy with our money. I used to be really good with being on a "Dave Ramsey" budget--using cash for everything. But I have definitely slipped. Mainly with online purchasing. I get so many great deal-sites delivered to my inbox everyday and trust me, it is so tempting. Time to get back on a budget. I would love to be completely debt-free (besides a house payment). We aren't far from it (silly student loan), so I know we can do it.

And my top goal: to eat a dessert from every local restaurant in in my town. Which pretty much goes against everyone elses goal to get fit. What can I say, I like to go against the flow.

So, tell me what are you looking forward to this year? Have you set any goals?


merry christmas forever late.

I almost decided with the New Year that I would just throw in the towel with blogging. So much has happened since the last time I posted with all the holidays that I feel sort of lost. But once again, I have to remind myself this little ol'blog is for me and my family. I love looking back at old posts and seeing the pictures and reading the words. Also? Occasionally I will run into people (or the hubs will) and they will say they read this little ol'blog. It's super sweet when I hear that, and it also keeps me wanting to share here.

I went on a blog hiatus because I left my camera at my sister's house on Christmas and just got it back on Saturday. Then on Sunday I dropped it and BROKE my DSLR. So, I will be whipping out my very old camera for the time being till I send my camera off to get fixed. But I do have good news! Tomorrow my new Mac Notebook should be arriving! The hubs won it through his business and is giving it to me. I'm slightly nervous about switching to a Mac. But rumor has it, once you go Mac you never go back. We shall see.

So, I guess I need to play catch up now. Let's start with Christmas. It was {as corny as it sounds} so magical watching the girls that morning open gifts. They slept in until 8:45, in fact we had to wake them up, I couldn't wait any longer! Audrey was pretty much speechless the entire time and Naomi was just so cheerful. My very favorite gifts to them were handmade dolls I bought from Miss Baker Stitches on Etsy. I ordered these dolls just a week before Christmas and Tracy had them made and shipped within days to me! They were custom made to "look-like" the girls and had their initials embroidered on the front; I also got to pick the fabric for each one.

Christmas Eve ready in the stockings.

Christmas morning. The girls also got a mini-trampoline which has already been so nice with the winter weather.

After a quick morning bath, it didn't take Audrey long to get in her ballerina outfit she got. I cannot wait to take her to the Nutcracker in a couple of years. She already loves the story.

Look at that sleepy face, holding a cow she got in her stocking.
[I just noticed a horse sticker on the trampoline. That didn't take long for Audrey to decorate it. Ha!]

Family shot Christmas morning. It's hard to tell from the picture, but Audrey's dress has Hello Kitty all over it. She picked it out herself at H&M. It was $12, I couldn't say no.

Those last two pictures were taken a few days before Christmas on our way to a family get together. It was almost impossible to get Naomi to sit still. Also? Audrey looks so, so big to me here! And I did not tell her to put her hands on her lap like that.

There you have it, folks. Christmas in a nutshell and some pictures. I seriously can't believe it has come and gone. I do hope you had a lovely Christmas too!