Sunday, August 16, 2015


Teacher workdays start tomorrow and, just like that, summer is over for me.

I feel like I've failed this summer in lots of ways.  There were so many things I wanted to do, especially with Aniston, that I just haven't had the energy for.  This pregnancy has been so much harder on me.  (Physically speaking.  Emotionally, it has been a hundred times better.)  I had planned to make this last just-the-two-of-us summer so special and fun...and it just didn't happen.

We didn't visit the library for story time.  We didn't go to the splash pad.  We didn't go to the movies.  We didn't do much shopping.  We haven't played outside as much as she wanted to.  For the first time in her little life, we didn't even go on a vacation this year.  Between my doctor appointments, B's work schedule, and him being part of the worship team at church, there just wasn't a good time to go.  (Not to mention the fact that I couldn't even imagine lugging all the beach necessities and a four year old through the sand to sit in the sun all day right now.)

Even though, logically, I know that it's okay, I still feel like I've failed her.  Next summer will be different.  It won't just be me and her during the day anymore.  Harper will be here, and as wonderful as that will be, it will be different.  That's such a hard thing for me to wrap my mind around at this point.  Maybe it's because she isn't here yet and I don't know how our family dynamics will change.  Maybe it's because I fear the unknown.  Maybe I'm afraid Aniston will feel slighted, less special, less loved.

Maybe it's pregnancy hormones and I need to get a grip.

This morning, as all these thoughts were running through my mind, I took time to snuggle with her as she started to wake. I told her what a treasure she is.  I told her how precious she is to me.  I told her that just like God had made every star in the sky, He had also made her, and she is beautiful and perfect and a thousand other things that I can't even put into words.  On this last day of our last just-the-two-of-us summer, I breathed her in and marveled at the wonder she is.

And then I asked a question.  A simple question, but one I was afraid to hear the answer to, one I had already cried over.

Did you have a good summer?  Her answer was a quick yes with a smile.

Curious, I followed with another.

What was your favorite part?  Without any hesitation at all, she answered,  "You, Mommy.  My favorite part was you."

Maybe I didn't fail after all. 

Friday, August 14, 2015

Five on Friday

1| Harper
I had an appointment on Wednesday to check on Harper.  Everything is going well, and her heart rate is in the 140s.  She's still big--measuring at over 36 weeks when I'll only be 34 tomorrow.  Dr. H says she's in the 78th percentile, and he's anticipating a healthy, chubby baby at the end of September.  Lots of people have asked if the c-section date will be adjusted, and the short answer is no.  Barring any complications, we're still looking at September 21.  Dr. H is sure of the due date and, even though he says it will be a very uncomfortable month for me, it's what's best for Harper.

2| Classroom Progress
A few weeks ago, we (and by 'we' I mean several other people--I only supervised) painted two of my classroom walls.  Last week, I decided I really, really needed the front wall painted (it looked so...blah compared to the others).  Thankfully, I have a husband and dad who went along with my whim and painted for me on Tuesday night.  I still have lots to do on the teacher workdays next week, but I'm happy with the progress so far.

3| Speaking of Teacher Workdays...
I can't believe the summer is over.  I'm ready to get back in the classroom (even if it is only until September 21), but, at the same time, I'm not quite ready to give up my days with Aniston--even if some of those days have been very, very difficult.  Which leads me to...

4| Four is Worse than Two
We made it through the so-called Terrible Twos with very few (major) tantrums.  The Terrific Threes were, well, terrific.  But four?  Oh. my. word.  Tantrum after tantrum, an unparalleled level of stubbornness, arguing with nearly everything I say, constantly bargaining instead of listening to directions, lots of attitude...mercy.  I have just been so frazzled by the end of the day sometimes.  Why didn't anyone warn me about this?!  I keep reminding myself that it's just a passing phase and will be over soon--or at least I hope it is!

5|  B's Birthday
We celebrated B's 34th birthday on Wednesday.  (He was 19 when we started dating.  There's nothing quite like a realization like that to make you feel like time really is flying.)  I'm so thankful for the person he is, and for another year together!

Have a great weekend, friends!

I'm linking up with April and Amy today.

Saturday, August 1, 2015

Five on Friday

This week has been insanely busy for us...which is why my Five on Friday is really a Five on Saturday morning.

1| Outcry
B and I had the opportunity to go to an Outcry Tour concert on Monday night.  It featured Hillsong United, Jesus Culture, Crowder, and lots of other Christian artists.  We had a great time!  It was in Greensboro, which is around two hours away from us.  The concert was long, and we didn't get home until after 2am.  By the time I crawled into bed, I was beyond exhausted, and felt very, very old.  Ha!

2| School
I've spent a lot of time in my classroom lately.  I was hoping to finish this week so I could really enjoy the last couple of weeks of summer, but that was a pretty lofty goal and didn't happen.  I've made a lot of progress, though, and it's beginning to come together and doesn't feel quite as overwhelming anymore.  B, my parents, and my friend Brooke have helped a ton this week, and our church life group came on Thursday to help paint, too.  I'm so grateful to all of them because I definitely couldn't have done any of it on my own!

3| Harper
I had an OB appointment on Wednesday to check on Miss Harper.  Her heart rate was great, but I measured three to four weeks ahead.  This was a big jump from my last appointment two weeks earlier, so my doctor was concerned and wanted to schedule an ultrasound as soon as possible.  I went back on Thursday for that.  Thankfully, everything is fine!  They checked the amniotic fluid level, and it was normal--too much would have been a cause for concern.  I'm measuring ahead because Harper is measuring ahead.  I'm 32 weeks today, and on Thursday she measured just a little over 35 weeks.  According to the ultrasound, she already weighs 5lbs 1oz and her little feet are over two inches long.  She is extremely active (which I already knew) and has a head full of hair and chubby cheeks.  We were able to watch her yawn a huge yawn and wave her hands around.  We loved seeing her again, and are so, so thankful that everything is okay.  She's big, but healthy.  No one is concerned about her size at this point, especially since she's a scheduled c-section.  They're planning to keep a close check on her, and if I continue to measure ahead we'll probably have another ultrasound in four weeks.

4| Anniversary
We celebrated our ninth anniversary on Wednesday.  It was simple and low-key, but wonderful all the same.  We went to The Cheesecake Factory for dinner...along with what seemed like the rest of the country.  Unbeknownst to us, we were married on National Cheesecake Day.  This ended up being both a blessing and a curse: our slices of cheesecake were half off, but we had to wait for a table for forty-five minutes on a Wednesday night.  Anyway, after I got over myself and stopped whining, we had a great time and the food was, as always, just heavenly.  We enjoyed spending time together, and left stuffed and happy.  (Also, the wait time as we were leaving?  Two and a half hours.  Insane.)

5| August
August is always a busy and expensive month for us (thanks to me going back to work and thinking that I can't live without new things for my classroom), and this year is going to be even more so as we get ready for Aniston to start preschool and Harper to arrive in September.  I'm determined to stick to a budget both time- and money-wise.  Let's hope this determination lasts for more than a day.

Have a great weekend, friends!

 I'm linking up with April and Amy today.

Wednesday, July 29, 2015

Nine Years

Dear B,

Nine years ago, on a rainy Saturday in July, I married you with this verse in my heart.  As I said my vows to you that day, I thought there was no way I could love you more or be happier than I was in that moment.  

I wish I could go back to that twenty-two year old girl and whisper in her ear, Oh, if you only knew!

Life with you just keeps getting better and better, and I can't wait to see what this year holds for us.

I love you!

Friday, July 24, 2015

Five on Friday

Aside from Wednesday, this week absolutely flew by.  I was shocked when I looked at the calendar earlier in the week and realized that next week is the last week in July.  Where is the summer going?!

1| This Print
The print above has been on my Etsy wish list forever.  If I thought I had the right place for it in my house, it would have been mine a long time ago.

2| Mixed Feelings
My feelings about summer are a little mixed this year.  I usually want summer to last forever, and that's still true, but I'm also really looking forward to September and Harper.  It's a strange place to be.

3| School
Aniston and I went to work in my classroom two days this week, and B went with me once to move furniture.  I usually don't go back this early, but I'm trying to make the most of these (kind of) comfortable days while they last.  The more I do now, the less I have to do later.  Since I'm moving grade levels and classrooms, there's more to do this year than there usually is.  I'm chipping away at it slowly and being careful not to do too much at once.

4| Nursery Progress
Harper's nursery is coming along slowly but surely.  B (finally) put the crib together this week, I've made decisions about colors, and the bedding has been purchased.  Now, if we can just get Aniston to stop moving her things back into the room...

5| This Happened
 Blurry, but you get the idea.

Henry the guinea pig (my class pet) escaped while B was cleaning his cage.  Luckily, the schnauzers weren't aware of what was going on or it would have been much, much worse.  (Also, please note that if you need pixie dust or the missing wing to Princess Sofia's horse, Minimus, you can find those on the bottom shelf in our dining room. :-P)

I'm linking up with April and Amy today.

Wednesday, July 22, 2015

One Day

Today has been a frustrating day.

The laundry situation in this house is out of control.  There's stuff we moved out of Harper's room that still doesn't have a permanent home.  There are boxes that need to go to the basement, and boxes of baby stuff that need to be carried up from the basement.  And there are toys everywhere.  I've spent most of the day trying to clean and organize, but while I'm in one room, a mess is being made in another by a certain little someone.

It's enough to drive a person crazy.

I was SO frustrated this afternoon, and found myself fussing, lecturing, and just not being the parent I want to be.  I turned on Disney Jr. and retreated to my bedroom for a five minute mommy time out.  As I sat on the edge of the bed and thought about the day, I realized a few things.

One day, toys won't be scattered from one end of our house to the other.
One day, instead of her begging me to play, I'll be begging her to do something with me.
One day, she won't say "Mama," a hundred times a day to get my attention.
One day, the house will stay clean, the laundry will be caught up, and everything will be quiet--no constant talking and singing, no little feet running through the house, no giggling.

And on that day, instead of crying in frustration like I did today, I'll cry because of all the moments and days that slipped by so quickly, lost in the busyness of daily life.

I will never get today back.  Tomorrow Aniston will be one day older, one day closer to growing up, one day closer to not needing me for so many things.  I can try my best to make tomorrow better by not getting as frustrated and by having more patience and grace, but today?  Today is gone.  A wasted day in exchange for what?  Fussing about toys and feeling overwhelmed by all that needs to be done?  In the grand scheme of things, what does it matter if my living room is littered with letter tiles, stuffed animals, and baby dolls?  Will Aniston remember the days our house was in perfect order, or will she remember my words and (I'm so ashamed to admit this) sometimes my harshness?  Will she remember the days all the laundry was put away, or will she remember the times I stopped what I was doing to play with her?

There will always be dishes to wash, laundry to do, dinner to cook, and so on...the necessary parts of daily life certainly can't stop.  But they can slow down.  That's what I realized today, and what I intend to do tomorrow--slow down and take time to really think about what's the most important thing in that moment.  Life is busy, and the pressure is often overwhelming, but in the end, what matters most?

Here's to slowing down and remembering that the little things are really the big things.

Tuesday, July 21, 2015

Our Weekend: A Quick Post

It's Tuesday night already and I haven't had time to write a post about our weekend, but I'm trying to do better about blogging just for the sake of remembering things.  So, here's a quick rundown of what's been going on here lately.

-After dinner on Friday, we made a quick trip to Sam's to pick up a few things.  Aniston tried a sample of gummy bears, fell in love with them, and somehow managed to convince her daddy to buy a bag.  A six pound bag.  Granted, they're the Black Forest kind, so they're made with real fruit juice, but still.  I love Sam's for some things, but others?  Not so much. 

-On Saturday morning, we had breakfast at Chick-fil-a, then B watched Aniston play in the play area while I ran to Walmart next door to grab the rest of the things on our grocery list.  This may have been the best decision ever, and I think every mama should try it. 

-It rained on Saturday afternoon.  Aniston made the most of it by turning her Cozy Coupe into a plane and giving Ethel the honor of being her copilot.  Poor Ethel.

-If you think Ethel looks a little odd in the picture,'s because she does.  She got something sticky in her beard and it turned into a huge mess and had to be clipped really close.  Being without a beard is not a very flattering look for a schnauzer. Bless her heart.

-After church on Sunday, we went to a party to celebrate Papaw Burl's 90th birthday.  We are so blessed to have these two wonderful people in our lives!  

-We ended the weekend with a cookout and swimming at B's parents' on Sunday night.  It was a fun way to spend time together before another busy week!