Saturday, June 20, 2015

Ten Year Anniversary

 This past Thursday we celebrated our 10 year anniversary! We spent the week on a cruise and visited Nassau and Freeport in the Bahamas. We took lots of pictures so instead of blowing up Instagram I'm just going to post all of them here. 

              Our first day at sea. 
Most of our day was spent acting like small children on the water slides :) A lot of racing happened and the winner is still being debated. 

        The rest of the time was spent 
           sunbathing and eating :) 

        All dressed up for dinner after our      
                      first day at sea. 

       I'm very happy to call him mine!

     I just can't handle him in that suit 😍 

         The sunset from our balcony. 
   Nassau, Bahamas. It was beautiful, obviously, but the locals are not very friendly and really pushy making it really unpleasant to walk around. 

 We took a ferry from Nassau to Balmoral Island to spend the day at the beach. The water was a bit cool and the beach was crowded, but we did have a good time snorkeling and finding shells to bring back for the kids!
Our next stop was in Freeport. The experience there was much more pleasant! The locals were very friendly. It's a very industrial town and not very impressive at first glance. But after you leave the city it is a beautiful city! This was the actual day of our anniversary and we spent it kayaking through the Lucayan National Forests. 

The creek ran through Red Mangrove trees. It was beautiful and the water was crystal clear. We kayaked 2.5 miles in under an hour and in true competitive nature we made sure we finished first 😉 We definitely earned our buffet that day!

             Steering hard...

           While he takes selfies ;)

After we made it to the end of the creek we had a short walk to the beach. The mangroves were so thick through here. The pictures don't show how pretty they really were. Their root systems go into the sand under the water and the trees float on top. Each species has a different way of ridding itself of the salt from the water and they are excellent environments for juvenile fish. 

This was the end of the trail of our walk. The picture just doesn't do it justice. I've been to many beaches and this was by far the most beautiful one I've ever seen!

     If my babies had been there I think I   
      could've stayed there forever. 

There wasn't anyone else in sight other than our small group. 

 If you ever want to visit a truly secluded beach with perfect white sand and warm water then Gold Rock Beach is excellent! It was shallow all the way to the second shade of blue and it was very gentle. It would be perfect for little ones!

I couldn't have imagined a more perfect way to spend our special day! I'm so blessed to get to do life with this man. I'm so thankful and grateful for him. I'm also thankful he's not into the dad bod 😍 

Monday, May 25, 2015

Ezra's One!

 Yes, it's true! I know I say this every update, but I just can't believe he's been here an entire year! Actually, I am a month late so now he's just days away from 13 months.
 He has changed so much since his 9 month update! Just like both of his big sisters, he started walking at 10 months. It didn't take him long to master it and now he's on the run...all the time :) He's also mastered climbing on everything! This is my first experience with a climber and I'm still trying to get used to it. No matter where he is, he wants to be at the highest point in the room. It's nerve wracking to say the least!
 His communication is also starting to take off. He's always been a chatty baby, but now some actual words are starting to form. He can say Mom, Da (not dad, da), snack, bite and no. He can sign "more", but he's not much into using it. I found it really beneficial with both of the girls, but he's just not into it. He actually gets a little frustrated when I try to get him to.
 His personality is really starting to shine. He's such a funny kid and loves to make people laugh! He's also very, very busy! He doesn't do anything longer than a minute or two. He's always looking for what he's going to do next. Much different than his sisters for sure! He's very curious and it takes him no time at all to figure things out, including whatever you've used to block him from climbing the stairs or to keep him contained in a certain area. He's also a  social boy and quickly warms up to just about anyone which is VERY different than his sisters! He's nosey and he's always interested in what everyone is doing.
 Physically he is still a big boy! At his one year check up he was 24 pounds which was 93% and 32 inches which was off the charts. Since he started walking his weight gain has slowed a little and his chunky thighs have slimmed up a little :( I'm sure going to miss all those rolls when they're gone! Even though his weight gain has slowed, his appetite has not! He hasn't gone through the normal 12 month slow down and it doesn't look like he plans on it. He is an excellent eater which is a welcome relief after 2 picky little girls!
 As of tomorrow it will be one whole week since he last nursed. He had been down to one nursing session a day and then he just stopped. It's very bittersweet for me. I love breastfeeding so I was sad to see it end. But, after spending the first 9 months of his life nursing every 2 hours at night I got to a point of wanting it to be over. It makes me sad that I felt that way, but the exhaustion just took a toll on me. After he finally started sleeping through the night and was only nursing in the morning and evening I fell back in love with it. I'm really glad I stuck it out and ended in a good place. Nursing my babies is something I'll always treasure and I'm so glad I was able to do it. Out of the last 9 years I've spent 5 of them being pregnant or breastfeeding babies, I'm happy to have my whole body back completely to myself! Definitely a bittersweet feeling.
 This past year has been such a joy and blessing! He's such a beautiful soul and he has been the perfect addition to our family! I could not love that little guy more <3

Climbing. I <3 those leg rolls!

Playing at the park.

This boy LOVES balls!

His first watermelon. He loved it!

All dressed up.

Raising a Pokes fan!

A Very Hungry Caterpillar first birthday party!

He was a big fan of the cake, obviously.

Before he destroyed it.

The day he turned 1!

Tuesday, February 3, 2015

Ezra's 9 Month Update

Our little guys is 9 months old and has been out almost longer than he was in! What a joyful and quick 9 months it's been! This is a lengthy update since I'm terrible at keeping up :) Also the photos at the end contain some breastfeeding photos, so if that sorta thing offends you don't look. 
 He has gotten so big and learned so many new things since his last update. At his 9 month check up he weighed 23 pounds and was 30 inches long. That puts him at >97% for his age. He started crawling the day he turned 7 months old and hasn't slowed down since. He can now pull up on things and walk around them. He has a push toy that he loves to push around and walk behind. He can stand on his own, but hasn't been brave enough to take any steps. Which is fine with me! He has learned to clap and play patty cake. He can wave and does so to anyone he sees, especially when he catches a glimpse of himself in the mirror:) His language is developing nicely. He has been saying mama and dada for a while now, but he now seems to be connecting those words to us. He also started saying "uh oh" and says it anytime he falls or drops something...which is all the time :) 
  He is still nursing great and eating everything in sight. He eats whatever we eat and we've yet to find anything he won't eat! 
 He's also cut a couple more teeth. Although he did get them in an unusual order. He has his bottom front two, but instead of getting his top front two next, he got the two on each side of where the top front ones should be. So he kinda looks like a kindergartner who's lost his two front teeth.  It's pretty funny :) 
 The most exciting thing to happen recently is his sleep. He FINALLY started sleeping through the night!!! Hallelujah!! With the exception of a couple of 2 week streaks of sleeping 5-6 hours at a time, he has woke up every 2-3 hours his entire life. Which means I was only sleeping for 1 1/2 hours at a time. If you've ever been through that for long periods of time you know how it feels. There wasn't an aspect of my life the sleep deprivation didn't affect. You can only live like that for so long before you feel like you're losing it. I hit that point about 2 weeks ago. I did lots of research trying to find a sleep training method that would work for us. I finally found one and tried it out. It worked! Not only did it work, it worked fast! By the second night he caught on and has been sleeping TWELVE hours straight since then!! It has been a huge blessings and I definitely feel like a new woman. The method we used did involve some crying, but it was very minimal which was important to me. I never felt like I was abandoning him. Since then he has also started napping like a champ! He take one 2 hour nap and one 1 1/2  hour nap. It's nothing short of amazing! If you're struggling with sleep with your little one or are expecting a little one and you'd like information on the method I used, let me know and I'll send you a link. It's a very detailed video series that is easy to follow. 
  I'm clinging to his babyhood with everything I have , but it's certainly slipping from grip all too quickly. As hard as it is, I find so much joy in watching my children grow. I always think there's no way I will enjoy their next stage/age more than the one they're in, but they always prove me wrong! 
 After I had my first baby 8 years ago (what?!?!) I couldn't imagine what it would be like having a complete family. I LOVE babies and I love having them around. I thought I would always want to the leave the option for more children open, just in case baby fever were to strike once more. But, since our sweet boy was born my feelings have started to shift. I've been diligently praying for feelings of contentment and completeness when it comes to the size of our family. Those feelings have started to show along with some bittersweet ones. As sad as I am to close this most amazing chapter of our life, I'm so excited to live the ones to come. I'm excited to watch our children grow and watch their beautiful lives unfold. There will always be babies around for me to hold to calm my baby fever (yay for nieces and nephews!). And one day my babies will have babies of their own, which I'm told is one of life's greatest joys :) I'm excited to see what awaits for our complete family of five <3 

         Stealing a sip of Mom's water. 
He always has that little nose scrunched:)

    Sometimes you need a spoon to eat. 
  Playing outside with his sisters. One of          his favorite places to be!

He's always on the go and can't be tied down too long. So sometimes he insists on sitting on his knees to eat :) 
Nursing smiles. One of my favorite things in the world <3

His truck from Santa for his 1st Christmas. 
         His first Rhems experience.