Monday, June 29, 2020

2020 Summer Vacation

We usually go to Pensacola and stay with our friends for our beach trip each summer but this summer we decided we wanted to go for a whole week just our little family of four.   We love the beach but Patrick is always like "lets go to a different beach than we always go to"  So we decided to go to Port St. Joe and stayed on the Cape and it was beautiful.  We loved it so much.  Now it's a good bit longer of a drive than what we're used to.  But it's very laid back and not as crowded as the beaches we've been to in the past.
These two had the best time on the beach.  Well, until they found out there was a pool.  Then they just wanted to stay at the pool and in the words of my dad "we didn't come to the beach to sit at the pool".  So, I came up with a system where I told them we had to make a reservation at the pool and each day I would tell them what time the reservation was and then they didn't ask all day long if we could go to the pool.  It worked beautifully.
The water was so calm and clear all week and the weather was beautiful too!
There were jellyfish and sis got stung two different times but she rallied and didn't let it ruin her trip.
Matching swimsuits for life.

They really do play together so well and I loved getting to see them enjoy the week together!
We did a sheet pan shrimp boil for dinner one night and this girl ate her weight in corn on the cob.

This dark cloud threatened to ruin our afternoon but it ended up going around us and only sprinkled a minute.

There was this little pond by our townhouse and the kids loved getting to feed the turtles.
We tried to spend every evening on the beach watching the sunset.  It was my favorite.

I did make them wear nice clothes one evening so I could snap some pictures.

She was a big fan of her daddy swimming with her in the pool every day!
We stayed out on the beach until nearly dark the last night and it was perfect!  
They had to feed the turtles one last time before we loaded up to head home!

Matchy Matchy for the ride home.  
We had such a wonderful week together, just the four of us.  We talked a lot about how next summer we'll have a sweet baby with us.  The kids are so excited to add the baby, I hope they're still excited once the baby is here.

Oh Baby, Baby!

We've been keeping a little secret during quarantine.

We're so excited to add this little one in October!  I've always wanted 3 kids, it took a little convincing but Patrick finally jumped on board.  I think it helps that Barrett and AveryAnn will be a little older.  My biggest fear is this will totally disrupt their sweet relationship.  They are so sweet and really enjoy playing together.  I hope that continues.  They're really excited so hopefully that doesn't wear off too soon.

We've kept this little one to ourselves for a lot longer than planned.  I figured I better get something official on the blog so he/she isn't disappointed to know there was very little documentation of them cooking compared to their siblings.  We talk about her (AveryAnn is insistent its a baby sister and for now we're going with it) every single day, multiple times a day.  We wanted to wait to tell the kids and we didn't want to tell a bunch of people and the kids not know so we just waited to tell people until after my 12 week appointment.  Quarantine has definitely made that easier.  We've slowly been telling people as we see them.  It's been a lot of fun.  
The kids are beyond excited, Patrick and I are too.  I feel so old this time around.  I've felt worse this time too but I'm not sure how much of that is pregnancy or how much is quarantine.  I'm finally feeling better.  But overall just so thankful for this baby.  It's kind of surreal to be pregnant again.  A little scary in these uncertain times.  But it's also been really nice to just be home and rest and enjoy growing another babe.  
When I went in for my "12 week" appointment I was 11 weeks and they couldn't get the heartbeat on the doppler so I had to go over to ultrasound and they were able to get it right away.  I was a little nervous but then I was really excited because I got to see the baby again and got these pictures where you can actually tell it's a baby.  I knew the kids would be way more excited about these than the 7 week ultrasound pictures.
We had our anatomy scan on June 2nd and everything looks right on schedule.  We didn't find out the gender and it makes me even more excited!

We went to the beach for one last vacation as a family of 4 and it was perfect! Barrett snapped this sweet picture of my {huge} bump and I love it so much! I feel bad that I haven't been documenting this pregnancy weekly like I did with the other two but hopefully they won't hold it against me.   We're counting down the next 16 weeks until we get to meet this sweet baby!  We have a lot to do and I know it will be here before we know it. 

Wednesday, April 29, 2020

Easter 2020

 We will never forget Easter 2020. The one we spent at home just the four of us.  We made the most of it.  I spent the week planning the menu for the weekend.  I was so excited.  It was so nice to have something to look forward to.  
I picked up donuts from out favorite local spot Saturday morning and we had a fun brunch.  We hid eggs for the kids to find.  They had the best time.  We hung out at home (duh) the rest of the day and just enjoyed being together.  We facetimed family.  We missed going to Grandmothers but we made the most of the day.
I picked flowers from the yard and made centerpieces for our Easter lunch.  I prepped lunch for Sunday.  Face timed my parents late Saturday night to make sure I wasn't ruining my ham. Laughed a lot.  It was really hard to not be with family for Easter.  We are a close family.  My parents cook lunch every Sunday, we don't all come every Sunday but my kids and I do.  So we're used to seeing them at least once a week.  Usually more because they help me a lot shuttling kids when Patrick has to work. So it's been hard not seeing them.  Barrett face times them nearly every day.  I've probably actually talked to them more in quarantine than I did before but I miss seeing them.

The Easter Bunny came (even though the kids rooms didn't get cleaned up.)  He brought new books and games, which have come in handy while being home.  Barrett has become quite the book worm and I love it.  It's really sweet watching him enjoy a good book! 

Can you tell I'm proud of my centerpieces?

We got up pretty early Sunday morning.  The kids usually sleep late but they were excited to see what the Easter bunny brought.  I put my 10lb ham in the oven and we watched Easter Mass at 8:30.  I love the joy of Easter Sunday after the solemn season of Lent but it was definitely not the same as being there.  I can't wait to go to church again.

I made ham, broccoli casserole, oriental slaw, instant mashed potatoes, shells & cheese and rolls.  I didn't over do it, but I wanted to have some of our favorite comfort foods. 

I got out the china and Barrett helped me set the table.  It was a really sweet meal with my little family.  It was definitely not the same but we made it special and I think it's an Easter we'll always remember.

We got lunch all cleaned up just in time for the severe weather coverage.  Barrett is more aware now and we tiptoe the line of being cautious without making him anxious.  We usually go to the basement when its clear we're in the path and then get in the closet when the siren goes off.  I always pack a little bag with shoes and clothes and my wallet, keys, phone charger and power bank for the charger in case we lose power.  I got the kids helmets out earlier in the day and put it all in the closet.  I told Barrett our motto is "Prepared, not scared!"  We ended up in the closet for a bit but thankfully it wasn't too close to us.

This one slept through most of it.  Wasn't scared or phased in the least.  
It was an Easter to remember for sure! 

Tuesday, April 28, 2020

2020: What the Hell

It started so strong.  We had a great vacation in Disney World.  I got to go on a fun girls trip to Nashville to celebrate my best friend getting married.  Then our basement flooded.  Then AveryAnn got the flu and we had to cancel her birthday party.  It wasn't all bad, there were some fun times in February too. Then March came and we were so na├»ve.  Then came postponed school, cancelled Spring Break plans and postponed baseball season.  Then came furloughed jobs, "distance learning",  and virtual ballet.  Its a wild world.  They called school for the year.  Which is just crazy to me.  Barrett passed first grade but I'm sad we didn't get to do all the fun end of the year things.
All that being said, we've been trying to make the most of our time in quarantine.  Thankfully, Patrick is still working.  The kids and I have been filling our days with school, tv (too much tv), playing outside and facetiming anyone who will answer.  The kids have done great for the most part.  They have been getting along so well.  I've really enjoyed getting to see them interact and play together so much.  There has been very little fighting and that's been really nice.   We're really hoping this is the last week of being at home.  Not that we have a ton of places to go but it'll be nice to have the option.  It will also be nice to send the kids to the grandparents for a night or three.
Here are some pictures from our time in quarantine...
This was our first day of my lesson plans.  Before we knew school was cancelled for the rest of the year.  We were so hopeful.

It was St. Patrick's Day.

Cuddling is at an all time high.  Which I loved at first.  Its starting to wear me out though.

That week we went to ride go carts with Drake.  (This was before we were told not to leave our houses unless absolutely necessary)

I finally ordered a new rug for a basement after the flood in February.  I got this half of the den set up.  The other side still looks like a unorganized garage sale.

This dog needs a nerve pill.  She is over us being home all the time.  She has to be touching me all the time because if she isn't one of the kids is trying to touch her and she's not here for it.

I read a book.

Watching the kids play outside.  Thankfully we've had some great weather.

He let AveryAnn do his makeup.

We found a caterpillar.  And the loved it to death.

My uncle passed away. My mom's family is pretty big and we're all still pretty close.  It was so hard not being able to hug each other.  Only my mom and her other 5 siblings were able to stand at the graveside but the rest of us were able to stay at our cars and luckily the priest was able to speak loud enough we could all hear him.  It was a beautiful service and kind of fitting because he was always a very simple man.  Never cared for much fanfare.  He lived a wonderful life and was so loved.  He will be missed.

The funeral was the weekend before Easter so I made the kids wear their Easter clothes since I knew we weren't going to be going to Mass for Easter.  We went to my parents after the funeral and had lunch (and celebrated Easter.) It was good to all be together.  

Love this little family of mine. 

I finally broke down and let Patrick cut Barrett's hair.  I wish I hadn't.

Our first day of distance learning with our school curriculum.  Barrett has been pretty good about doing his work.  His teacher told me if he just did an hour a week he would be nearly a whole grade ahead.  I don't know if that's true or not but that's our goal, one hour each week.  We usually do about 30 minutes a day of the computer work and then he reads for another 30 minutes.  I need to get him writing to practice his handwriting.

AveryAnn's teachers dropped off her workbooks and all the print outs for the rest of the year for her to work on as well.  She hasn't been nearly as eager as her brother.

We started Zoom ballet.  She doesn't love it as much as actually going to the studio but she's enjoying it.  I've enjoyed getting to watch since we can't see what they're doing in class at the studio.

The Easter bunny made his rounds the week before Easter.  The kids picked out their own outfits.

I picked flowers from my yard for our Easter centerpieces.  I'm going to do a separate post on our Easter Sunday. 

Then we had tornadoes and spent Easter evening in the basement.

Her idea of wearing a mask per the CDC recommendations.

Reading in the sun.  

More cuddles.

They've been so sweet together.

Her hair is so long I have to put it up in the twist towel when we wash it.  She thinks she is so cool every time we do it and it makes me smile so much.

We finally broke out the baseball slip 'n slide.  They've laughed a lot.

My roses are blooming and so pretty.

I had to go pick something up and I told her she had to wear clothes.

She told me she was wearing clothes.  We've got to get back to real life before they become complete animals.

We escaped to the lake for a change of scenery on Sunday.  It was cold, both the water and the air.  The kids did swim, I couldn't believe it because I was freezing just sitting in the sun.

I ordered this sweatshirt for him for baseball season.  He got it this week and has worn it everyday.  He put it on and his hat and said "mom, I look like a professional baseball player don't I?"  I just love him so much.  We're really hoping we get to play baseball this season even if its just a few weeks.
That's what we've been up to the last six-ish weeks.