Monday, March 11, 2019

24 Months Update

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24 Months
You're 2 years old!
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August 25
I can hardly believe it. Two just sounds so old. And yet, in a way, you're still so, so little.
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September 2
For a few official stats, at your 2 year appointment you weighed 19 lbs 2 oz (0%ile). You were 31.9 in tall (3rd%ile). Your head circumference was 47 cm (11.6%ile).
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September 15
You're mainly wearing 12 months, with a couple of 18 months tops thrown in. You're wearing size 6 shoes. (And if you had your say about shoes, you'd always, always want to wear your boots.)
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September 23
As I said in my last update, you're talking non-stop. A recent update though has been singing. For example, on the drive home today as it was raining, I hear in the back seat, "Rain, rain go away, another day." Or while changing you into pajamas to go to sleep, it was a perfect for "Jingle bells, jingle bells, all the way!"
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September 28
Speaking of going to sleep, your are still sleeping with at least one, sometime two My Little Ponies. (After all, they are perfectly handheld, and the most essential part, they have hair.) But you've also started to collect things in your bed as you're sleeping. Tonight for example, in bed with you was a pony, stuffed dinosaur, stuffed tiger, stuffed skeleton, giant giraffe pillow you received for Christmas (and yes, I am writing this 2 months late), as well as a plastic tractor, and plastic dinosaurs.
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September 30
Dinosaurs are one of your current favorites, along with trucks, tractors, or lawnmowers. You have a dump truck you love filling with stuff and dragging all around the house. Or instead, you'll sit on the tricycle (a 2nd birthday present) or fire truck (a 1st birthday present) and ride them around the house. Both of them also have hidden compartments for storage, so you're constantly hiding things in them in addition to your yellow chair (also a 1st birthday present).
Explore Yard Fun
October 9
You recently have started being afraid of monster or Bergens (the bad guys from Trolls). Nothing crazy, but you won't willingly go into a room by yourself or when it's dark since there might be a monster. Luckily you'll often find your older sister is willing to accompany you.
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October 13
You still love your big sister, and want to do anything she's doing. For an interesting turn, now she wants to copy everything your doing. It makes it so much fun when one of you is doing something they shouldn't as soon as one stops the other starts instead for a vicious cycle. One of which would be jumping on the couch. Although I do have it admit it is pretty adorable that every time you jump on the couch you yell out, "No monkeys jumping on the couch!"
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October 24
It's funny because while I can't quite believe how big you are, you still seem so much smaller than your sister was at this age. I'm sure it's a second child thing. Either way though, it's crazy how these past 2 years have flown by and that I can barely even remember you as a newborn. Hopefully now that I'm in less of a newborn fog, I'm able to remember more of these adorable details from 2!
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2nd Birthday Party
Here's a comparison with your sister at 24 months.
2 Years OldIMG_5558
24 Months
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Birth Story
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1 Month ~ 2 Months ~ 3 Months
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4 Months ~ 5 Months ~ 6 Months
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7 Months ~ 8 Months ~ 9 Months
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10 Months ~ 11 Months ~ 12 Months
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14 Months ~ 16 Months ~ 18 Months
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20 Months ~ 22 Months

Tuesday, February 19, 2019

#LoveBlog: The Worst Year Ever

It's been 3 years since I last hosted Belle Brita's Love Blog Challenge. Actually 3 years since I was regularly blogging anything at all. Not too surprising in a way, since 3 years ago, 2016, was actually the year where everything changed.
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2016 was the year we welcomed our son into the world. While none of us could imagine our live without him, for us, going from 1 to 2 babies, was so much harder than when we had our first.

It was also the year when the small family owned company I worked for was bought out by a Fortune 500 company almost 10 times our size. Don't get me wrong, in the years since there has been a lot of opportunity and positive changes, but at the time, not knowing what to expect was all a little overwhelming.
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2016 was also the year we lost our home and most of our belonging to an unprecedented flood here in Louisiana. Someday I'll write down our survival story, how we practically swam out of our house with our 1-year-old daughter and belongings floating in an inflatable pool. How we hitched rides in 3 different cars, 2 different boats, and finally a national guard truck to spend the night at a shelter in a middle school gym. But that whole story will need to wait for another day.
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I've told many people that 2016 was the worst year of my life. (Even worse than the year I lost my mom, which was another pretty awful one.) After all, everything changed, seemingly for the worst. I know we've all heard that cliched line, "You're so strong, I never could have done what you did." And yet, when faced with the worst you really don't have a choice. It isn't necessarily strength, but more survival. You just have pick yourself up and keep going, because eventually things will turn around and get better.

Finally, 3 years later, I'm in a place where things are starting to feel normal again. They aren't the same as they were in 2016, but I finally feel like I'm in a good place. Yes, I'm still upset that I lost all my Victoria Secret bathing suits, my yearbooks from every year of school, and so much more. But I can also laugh about it now. Yes, everything changed, but yet there's so much good now, I'm not sure I'd go back and change things. (Except maybe move more personal items to the attic to keep them safe, but when faced with disaster you don't always think rationally. Although now, if anyone were to ask me what I would save if my home was on fire, I have a real life example to use!)

Today I'm co-hosting Belle Brita's Love Blog Challenge, a link-up for the month of February. See below for more info on the link-up and to meet the other hosts.

Brita Long is the pink and sparkly personality behind the Christian feminist lifestyle blog, Belle Brita. On her blog and social media, you'll discover more than authentic storytelling--she's brutally honest about pursuing a fulfilling and joyful life even with Crohn's Disease and depression.
Twitter // Instagram // Facebook // Pinterest // Bloglovin

Alessia is a lifestyle blogger, and writer with a post-graduate degree in History. She lives in the best borough in London, up and coming Croydon. She's a bit like Emma Woodhouse (Pemberley Digital version) and no longer the most eligible Catholic bachelorette, as she has found her Mr Knightley in sunny Derbyshire.
Twitter // Instagram // Pinterest // Bloglovin

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Shoshanah is a California girl who moved to Louisiana and fell in love. (Hence her blog, From L.A. to LA.) She is the mother of a 4-year-old daughter and 2-year-old son. She loves all things pumpkin, reading (especially historical fiction), and gingerbread lattes.
Twitter // Instagram // Pinterest // Bloglovin


Saturday, December 29, 2018

Best Books of 2018

There's a lot of things I miss about blogging regularly. I use to love sitting down and writing book reviews after finishing a book, as something to refer back to on why I might have loved it so much. (But the last one I posted was back in 2016!) Also, I used to love wrapping up a year reflecting back on what occurred. (The last time I did one of those was even longer in 2015!) So on a whim I decided to bring them both back with a list of my favorite reads from the past year. In years past I've actually ranked books where #1 was my absolute favorite, but for simplicity sake, I just have them all in the order I read them.

1. Apprentice by Maggie Anton
I LOVED Anton's Rashi'a Daughters Trilogy and was so excited to read another one from her. It's a time period that I haven't read much about (Persia in 300s), and I found everything fascinating. There is a sequel to it, which I can't wait to pick up.

2. Juniper: The Girl Who Was Born Too Soon by Kelley Benham French and Thomas French
This is such an incredible memoir about a couple recollecting their duaghter's premature birth. Thankfully, everything worked out for the family and they now have a healthy daughter years later. I just remember not being able to put this down, because even though you know how it works out, you just had to see the journey there.

3. The Forgotten Room by Karen White, Lauren Willig, Beatriz Williams
This was a fun book written by 3 different authors told over three time periods. Of the authors, I had only read Willig before (whose Pink Carnation series I love!), but I've heard great things about Williams especially. It was definitely fun trying to match either author up with the story they likely guided the most. Each story centers around a room in a NYC house and features a different love story. It was so fun trying to figure out how the characters and stories were all interwoven.

4. Fangirl by Rainbow Rowell
So far, I've loved everything I've read by Rowell. Which actually is now only two, but I'm still excited to read the rest. I felt like this book so captured the feeling of being in college. I also loved the fan fiction aspect of it, which brought me back to when I used to read and write it back in high school. (Yes, seriously! Backstreet Boys fan fiction in case you had to know! Sadly, or maybe not so, anything I wrote no longer exists.)

5. The Royal We by Heather Cocks and Jessica Morgan
I feel like I'm so late to this one! But like everything else, reading has also dropped off lately. I picked this up just in time for The Royal Wedding. It really was just as good as everything said, and I'd love to read a sequel to check in on Nick and Bex.

6. Somerset by Leila Meacham
After reading Roses by Meacham years ago, I've been meaning to read more by her. This was actually the second by her I read this year (the first being Titans), but the one I liked better. It had such an interesting perspective. It is another epic family story. I loved some of the details, things like the discovery of dinosaur bones and the idea of adoption in the early 1900s. Actually this was one of many books I read this years that discussed adoption in the early 1900s, definitely a bit of a rabbit hole I fell into.

7. Pachinko by Min Jin Lee
Another epic family historical story. This one though taking place in Korea and Japan. Like many of the others, it's a period I knew little about which is part of the reason I loved it. There are a lot of characters and a lot of time passing in this book, which meant certain aspects weren't as developed as they could have been. Still I absolutely loved the book and getting to hear the family's story.

8. All the Light We Cannot See by Anthony Doerr
I remember being intrigued by this one when it came out, and can't believe it's taken me so long to read. It's an interesting perspective of WWII, one I hadn't read before. There's 2 separate stories told throughout, and I loved how they finally intertwined at the end.

9. Crazy Rich Asians by Kevin Kwan
Another one I know I'm crazy late on! I haven't seen the movie yet, but based on the previews, I'm not sure it can compare to the book. The title of this one definitely lives up to its name. I've since gone on and finished the trilogy and while I loved them all, I think the first is the best because you really go into it not knowing what to expect.

10. Before We Were Yours by Lisa Wingate
Remember a couple of paragraph's ago mentioning how I read several books about adoption, this is one of those. (The other big one was The Orphan Train, which just missed this list.) It's another one with two story lines that intertwine by the end. I actually loved the historical one so much more than the present day story, although I do realize the importance of having the other perspective.

11. A Man Called Ove by Fredrik Backman
I just couldn't stop at 10, and for those of you that have read this, you understand why. It's a book you start and don't quite get, but as you continue to read and understand the story it's heartwarming and one you can't put down.

I feel like 2018 was the first year in a while where I really, really loved what I read. Hence the reason I wanted to write this post. I didn't hit my goal of 52 books in a year, although assuming I finish the book I'm currently reading, will be only 7 books away. I'm hoping that now that the babies are getting older and I'm starting to feel a bit more like myself again, I can get back to reading and blogging more often!

To see my favorite books from years' past go here:
2014
2013
2012

Tuesday, December 18, 2018

3 2/3 Years Update

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3 2/3 Years
You're 3 and 2/3 years old! Practically a grown up!
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April 17
Based on our scale at home you're almost to 30 lbs. You're wearing a mix of clothes from 2t to 4t. In shoes you're currently in a size 9.
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May 9
Your favorite movie is currently Trolls. You go in phases of watching the same movie over and over. So before Trolls it was Toys Story 2, and before that Baymax (Big Hero 6), with a few watchings of The Little Mermaid and Pinocchio thrown in there. You don't normally watch tv, but when you do, you want to watch Paw Patrol or Shimmer and Shine.
Watching Incredibles 2
June 16
You started Pre-K in the fall at your daycare. (Although based on your birthday, will wind up needing a second year next year.) Starting Pre-K you were so excited because that meant you were able to sign your name each day on the white board. Through practice you've actually gotten quite good at writing out your name.
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July 6
You are really enjoying school right now. Each week you're so excited to tell me what your job is. (This past week you were the gardener.) I'm always so impressed by what you now seem to know, things like The Pledge of Allegiance. You best friends at school are still I and N. Although there are several girls in your Pre-K class you mention as well (C, A, and H for instance).
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July 7
You love playing board games and doing puzzles. Each night after Bear goes to sleep you know it's time to do something special. Most night that means you want to play one of your board games, but occasionally you'll want to do a puzzle. Less often than either of those, it's playing with your Playmobils.
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July 12
You're playing soccer again this Fall and you absolutely love it. You had swimming lessons over the summer and were a big fan of those as well, even swimming a few strokes on your own by the end.
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July 13
Also you went to a week of cooking camp over the summer which you really enjoyed. Coincidentally the week after camp ended you wound up going to a birthday party at the same cooking school, which again you had a blast at.
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July 22
You are such an awesome kid. Yes, there are moments of meltdowns or sassiness coming out, but no more than what you'd expect from any other 3 year old. You really have gotten to be such a little grown up that I can barely believe it.
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August 1
1 Month Old2 Months OldIMG_3341
1 Month ~ 2 Months~3 Months
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4 Months ~ 5 Months ~ 6 Months
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7 Months ~ 8 Months ~ 9 Months
IMG_414011 Months12 Months
10 Months ~ 11 Months ~ 12 Months
14 Months16 MonthsIMG_4546
14 Months ~ 16 Months ~ 18 Months
2 Years OldIMG_4963IMG_5104
24 Months ~ 2 1/4 Years~2 1/2 Years
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2 3/4 Years ~ 3 Years ~ 3 1/3 Years