Home Stretch

Today is the start of my third trimester, and I can’t help but marvel over just exactly where the time has gone. This baby has been with me through one road trip to Nashville, two hurricanes, three birthdays (not mine, obviously, but my mom’s, dad’s, and Kennedy’s), three major holidays and the preparation for a fourth, lots of ups and downs with regard to aches and pains, and a weight gain of about 16lbs after an initial weight loss of 8lbs (so I’ve actually gained 24lbs).

I’ve told all my friends and family that it’s likely that this will be my last pregnancy. I have no idea what the future holds, if I will want another after our son has arrived, or if it’s even in the cards according to God’s plans for us, but because I’m treating this like it’s the last time, I’m going about things very differently than I did before.

This is where I come to a tough spot in this blog post, because I’d normally freely divulge just what my intentions are with the remainder of gestation for our son and how I want his delivery to be both similar, and different from, his sister’s. Normally, I’d write in depth about all the ways I’ve changed since August 2013, making me a different kind of mom now. I am not opposed to speaking about these aspects of my newest bundle and myself, but I don’t want to put much onto this blog for the time being as part of my larger move to become a more private person (hence why I set fire to all my social media accounts this year).

My skirting the larger subject of labor begs the question of why I bothered to bring the subject up in the first place. It’s simple: I am anxious to meet him. I’m anxious to see how much better at this I’ve gotten since the first time around. I look forward to the day, whenever it comes, that I can hold him in my arms. I anticipated meeting my daughter this way, but I was so new to the mom experience that I was a little too infatuated with just pregnancy. Pregnancy is beautiful (as is breastfeeding, attachment parenting, cosleeping, etc.), but it’s definitely just 1/8 of the tip of the iceberg. Raising a child these past three years has taught me that there is much more that awaits. I do enjoy the bump as an accessory, though.

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Thankful

Trans Siberian Orchestra is pumping through my speakers, my homemade cranberry sauce is cooling in the fridge, and the smell of green bean casserole is wafting through the house on this beautiful Thanksgiving morning. I have about seven different tasks I need to tend to, which include getting showered to head over to my parents’ house for dinner, but I wanted to stop in and quickly chronicle all that I am grateful for this year.

It’s been a year of twists and turns as the place I was when the year started is vastly different from where I sit now, with only about 37 days left until 2016 is up.

I am grateful to have mustered up courage this year.
I had to defend my thesis for the MBA program, put myself out there for a job I wasn’t even sure I was qualified for, and walk away from certain things and people that I decided weren’t serving me anymore. It isn’t easy to decide to walk your own path, but I stepped out onto my own through redefining my priorities this year, and for that I am both proud of myself, and grateful to have done.

I am grateful for my faith.
I should’ve listed this first, and it’s pretty obvious for anyone who knows me that the aforementioned accomplishments I attribute first and foremost to the grace of God, but my faith carried me through some very difficult and testing times this year. I am so grateful to not resist Jesus, His calling to me, and His will.

I am grateful for my family.
We’re finally adding a new member…! My marriage is back on track! I have the most beautiful daughter imaginable! My parents are spectacular! Nuff said.

I am grateful for this blog.
I’ve ditched all other platforms of social media (more on that later) but this blog is and will always remain my greatest outlet for publicly sharing anything I want. It’s been my baby since my last few days as a 29 year old, and I’ve grown through having it. I love chronicling parts of my life journey here, not so much for people to read about (though I do adore all of my readers) but to have something to look back on later.

I’m also grateful for good food, which I will be chowing down on soon.🍗

Here’s to FOOD COMAS!!

Happy Thanksgiving 🦃

Summer in Full Swing

It’s been an interesting summer down here, and the season isn’t entirely over yet. One thing I must say I’ve enjoyed most about this summer is that we’ve had a steady influx of family come to see us since the end of May. I highlight this because in the past, it hasn’t always been this way. It’s usually our family traveling to see others. Needless to say, it’s a warm feeling to have folks want to come to where you’re from.

Here are some photos:

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My aunt and uncle came to visit. Having them in my home was surreal, as well as beautiful!


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My dad and his brother. These two had a lot of fun together and it made my heart happy to see them reunited after a long time.


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Kennedy was born on my cousin’s birthday three years ago, and that makes them buddies. I enjoyed getting to watch him with her. 


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Since fireworks are legal here in Florida, we got to host our own show for the 4th of July this year! Definitely beats the traffic of trying to get to other firework shows…

 

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Once she got over the loud sounds, she enjoyed the sparkly display of the 4th, homestyle. 


We took Kennedy to see Finding Dory as her first movie this summer!

Christmas Eve

As I’ve grown up, I’ve come to value Christmas Eve as an even better holiday than Christmas day. I think it’s because in my family, we use Christmas Eve as an excuse to day drink, eat cookies and pie for breakfast, listen to Christmas music and sing along obnoxiously, and anticipate what the following day might bring. It’s also the last day of the real “season” – after Christmas morning, all of the gifts are opened, yummy meals are served and eaten, and the excitement is over. We leave our Christmas tree up until New Year’s Day, but without presents underneath it, it always looks bare to me.

I’m excited for Kennedy’s second first Christmas to happen with her grandparents. I feel like grandparents are the icing and sprinkles on the metaphorical Christmas cupcake that millions of children yearn to dig into every December 25th. As parents, we work hard to make sure that the holiday is fun and memorable, but Grandma and Grandpa really drive it home.

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SOME of the gifts we’ll exchange tomorrow. Special thanks to my friends in other states for the packages sent in anticipation of the holiday. It’s nice to know we’re not forgotten even though we’ve moved!

Presents are wrapped, lights are strung and gleaming, cookies are ready for baking, and five hearts – mine, mom’s, dad’s, hubby’s, and Kennedy’s – are all together. It doesn’t really get much more perfect for me.

Christmas Card Photo Outtakes

I took a bunch of photos of Kennedy for our Christmas card this year. It was a challenge, but extremely fun. I’m so excited for our family and friends to receive our cards! Here are some photos that are really cute, but didn’t make the cut:

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I adore this picture, and it almost went to print for the Christmas card. I plan to hang this in our new house.