Tuesday, May 20, 2014

INTRODUCING.....

SHE'S HERE!!!


INTRODUCING...

Adelaide Quinn

 
I can't believe we're finally a family of four!

loyally,
katie
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Sunday, May 18, 2014

Emmalyn's 1st Dance Recital

It was a day I will never forget. An emotional one. One filled with joy, pride, relief, and love. 

Emmalyn performed in her first dance recital yesterday. 

Many of you know I've been extremely worried over whether I would go into labor just days before her Big Stage debut and have to miss it. I expressed to my husband how devastated I would feel if I couldn't make it—although I know in the long-run it wouldn't scar Emmalyn. Friday afternoon was her rehearsal and I felt a huge weight lifted off my shoulders: I got to see my baby dance on stage, and she got to hear me shout words of praise and squeeze her tightly. I thought to myself, If I go into labor tonight, at least I got to see her dance.

Saturday came and no signs of immediate labor—phew! It looks like I would actually get to see her do “the real thing”. My next biggest fear became if she would pee her pants while waiting backstage. As a former dance teacher, I know how nervous the little ones can be without their mommies and how many bathroom runs I've made with them just minutes before they go on stage. I had visions of her walking on stage with wet tights! But alas, she was a rockstar!

She was the fourth number to perform and I couldn't wait to see her shine under the big bright lights. Just as the teacher was walking the girls on stage, an usher was bringing down a party of six or so people to their seats... in front of us. Oh hell-to-the-no! I was furious! There was no way I was going to let them obstruct my view of my daughter's big moment. I grabbed Blake and said, “Let's go!” and ran down the aisle. 

I bypassed Mama Bear and went straight to Mama Ape Shit. My 39-weeks-and-5-days-prego-body physically shoved the usher and group of rude latecomers as I said, “Excuse me. Please move. My daughter is on stage. RIGHT! NOW!” I may not have said it politely, but at least I used polite words...

I knelt down in the middle of the aisle and just completely lost it. I'm not talking about a trickle of tears down my face. I'm talking about releasing a full-on ugly & hysterical cry. 

I told you it was an emotional day!

The whole time I watched my tiny dancer I couldn't believe she's actually mine. I clung on to those two short minutes, utterly amazed and motivated by her natural confidence. It's frightening dancing on a professional Broadway stage, let alone being three and doing it.

She was incredible and stunning and simply captivating.

I was mesmerized. I was so proud.

When I returned to my seat, the water-works didn't cease. In addition to my heart filled to the brim with love and pride, I also felt a huge sense of relief: I made it. All the worrying and “what-if-I-go-into-labor” dissipated. I made it for my Big Girl.

I was grateful to God for allowing me to be present, and to share in this incredible experience with Emmalyn.

When she came off the stage at intermission, I scooped her up, smothering her with kisses, as she smothered me with black glitter. It was priceless to hear her say, “That was so cool!” As her mother, I will never forget that day.

loyally,
katie



So now that I successfully made it through the recital sans water-breaking, can we please have a baby now?!


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Tuesday, May 13, 2014

Bumpdate: 39 Weeks ~ Baby #2

How far along: 39 Weeks! I've made it longer than I did with Emmalyn. I actually didn't think I would still be pregnant at 39 weeks, to be honest.

Total Weight Gain:
30lbs {see “cravings” below for explanation}

Labor Signs: Sporadic contractions throughout the day, but nothing time-able; been sitting pretty at 2cm for about two weeks now.

Symptoms:
Major heartburn

Movement:
Apparently Baby Girl still has a lot of room in there because she hasn't slowed down a bit!

Sleep:
Just terrible! However, I feel fortunate that Pregnancy Insomnia has really only hit me at 39 weeks. Overall, I've been very, very lucky with sleep.

Cravings & Aversions: I was craving brownie batter the other day so I made a batch and probably ate at least ¾ of the (cooked) brownies (after I generously licked the bowl) myself. Oooohh they were soooo fudgey and gooey.... I don't eat like that when I'm not pregnant, so no regrets... worth.every.pound.

Funny Moments: At my well-checkup yesterday, I closed the curtain to undress and Emmalyn said, “Are we going to put on a show?” Welp, depends on how you look at it, kid...

Not So Funny Moments: Carrying a kicking and screaming 30-lb three year-old, on top of carrying 30-lbs across my mid-section out of Story Time at the library. That's 60 pouds of Super Fun.

Nesting: Basically doing laundry every day... just in case!

Best Moments This Week: Spending one last Mother's Day with JUST my Big Girl. It was very bittersweet. The absolute best was when Emmalyn woke me up and (totally unprompted by anyone) said, “I want to be just like you when I grow up.” Simply the best!

What I Miss: My energy and “normal” body!

Looking Forward To: My mommy coming tomorrow! & Lil Sis' appearance! However, it would be quite great if she could stay tucked away until after Emmalyn's dance recital this Saturday. Then, she can grace us with her presence anytime! =)

loyally,
katie
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Monday, May 12, 2014

Dear Katie -- A Letter to Myself

Throughout my pregnancy, I've had numerous people ask me if I'm concerned about going through Postpartum Depression again. I'd be lying if I said it hasn't crossed my mind more than several times. I'm not scared, but I do want to take as many precautions as possible.

One thing I wanted to do is write myself a letter ahead of time—just in case the evilness sneaks up again, and I forget that everything will be all right.

:: :: ::

Dear Katie,

I feel hopeful that Postpartum Depression won't show up for Round Two, but just in case, there are a few things I want you to remember:

YOU ARE CAPABLE
You got through hell once before, and God-forbid you have to do it again, you are highly capable. You've already proven just how strong you are.

GET OUT OF THE HOUSE
Even if it is just a walk around the block by yourself (or with Indy), get outside for some fresh air and vitamin D. It's good for your soul.

DO YOGA
This is something that's also good for your soul, and your well-being just in general. Do at least one yoga position a day. Make it a habit, a lifestyle.

ASK FOR HELP
There's no shame in asking for help. You know you would jump at the opportunity to help another mom so there's no reason someone wouldn't do the same for you.

PHONE A FRIEND
If you're feeling anxious, sad, overwhelmed, or whatever, pick up the phone and call someone. Keep calling until someone answers. Sometimes all it takes is hearing a friendly voice, validating your feelings.

LET IT GO
Turn on that damn song and sing it with Emmalyn if you want to, but let the phrase be a reminder to not sweat the small stuff! Dirty dishes piling up in the sink? Let it go. Toys all over the house? Let it go. Someone said something rude? Let it go... let it go...

PRAY

Keep an open line of communication with God. Don't ever forget: The will of God will never take you where the Grace of God will not protect you. It's the truth. Give all your concerns, fears, and troubles to God. He will take care of them, and you! Stop and talk to God every!single!day!

SMILE
Stand in front of the mirror and smile at yourself every day, even if it makes you feel silly. Say one thing you like about yourself, or a mantra such as, “You are enough,” or “You are the right mom for your kids.”

JOURNAL IT

Write down how you are feeling. It'll make you feel better to get it off your chest.

BE GRATEFUL
State at least one thing a day that you're grateful for. Grateful hearts don't have room for worries.

GIVE HUGS
Hug your husband and girls every single day. This one's easy!

WALK AWAY
If you're feeling like the world is crumbling down on you, put the baby down (and away from Emmy), give Emmy the iPad, and walk away. Close the door and cry if you need to. Take deep breaths and splash water on your face. Read a trashy magazine if you feel like it.

DRINK WATER
Take care of your body. If you are feeling run down, the first thing you should do is drink a large glass of water. Make sure you're eating fresh fruits and vegetables, too!

IT WILL PASS
Tomorrow is a new day. Heck, twenty minutes from now may seem like a whole new day. “This too shall pass.” I promise it will. Hang in there.

BELIEVE IN YOURSELF! YOU CAN DO IT!!

loyally,
katie
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Monday, May 5, 2014

Book Review: Tiny Blue Lines... & I'm in it!


As a young woman who found myself surprisingly expecting a baby less than a year out of college and not married, reading Tiny Blue Lines was very nostalgic for me. I wish this book had been around four years ago for me, as I carried a lot of guilt and insecurities throughout my first pregnancy. At the time I felt like no one understood how I was feeling even though I knew I wasn't the first person to have a baby out of wedlock. But no one reached out to me and it was quite lonely inside my head at times.

Chaunie understands the multi-faceted guilt that goes along with an unplanned pregnancy. I was reading and silently shouting, “Yes! She gets it! She gets me. She understands exactly how I felt.” Tiny Blue Lines tells young mothers that we are not alone! I appreciated that Chaunie wrote this book as if she were having a conversation with me over a cup of coffee in her home; like she was a comforting and nonjudgemental big sister. I felt as if she was holding my hand the whole way through cheering, “You've got this girlfriend—you can do it!”

Chaunie showcases real-life women who come from different walks of life, and chose different paths. Some put their education on hold, while others did whatever it took to graduate. Some shifted their dreams and made them a reality. Some decided to get married before baby, while others waited, or chose to co-parent instead. No matter what they decided, they all—we all—have one thing in common: 
  
Our lives changed for the better. Our babies were a surprise blessing—never a mistake. 

My favorite line from the book is “...things are not always as they seem. There are no accidents with God, and life is always an intentional gift.”

I enjoyed her “Marriage Before Carriage” advice which includes topics like: “There's no 'right' or 'wrong' way to have a wedding,” “Accept help,” and “Wear comfy shoes,” among other things to consider. Her practical and sometimes witty advice is a breath of fresh air, contrary to advice I was once forced to hear such as, “Oh you'll figure it out—don't worry.” Therefore, I love that at the end of the book Chanuie provides detailed advice and specific resources. She never stops gifting the real-life advice young mothers need to help navigate such a huge change in their life.

I laughed out loud at some of the stories she shared about the ridiculous things people (usually strangers) would say to her and other young mommies while out in public because I could absolutely relate. One time, as I was being rung up at a department store, the clerk looked at me and my (then) one year-old daughter in the stroller and said, “You must not be much older than the baby.” I even had my weddings rings on! But Chaunie has been there many times before and she understands. Reading her words makes you feel like you're not alone.

One of my favorite parts of the book was when Chaunie mentioned me as an "inspiring woman." It was a surprise to me, and I had the happiest and cheesiest grin glued onto my face.


Chaunie's bravery and courage to put herself and her very personal story out there in the world for everyone to see is admirable. She is a blessing to young mamas everywhere.

Without a doubt, I would recommend Tiny Blue Lines to any young mom who finds herself surprisingly expecting a little blessing in her life. Every woman should have someone to hold her hand and cheer her on. Chaunie will do just that! 

loyally,
katie
// // // 

You can read & find out more about Chaunie Marie Brusie and Tiny Blue Lines, here. Do it!

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Friday, May 2, 2014

Open Letters

Dear Hallmark & Publix,
Please refrain from airing your Mother's Day commercials when I am in the room. My hormones cannot take you at this time.
Thank you,
One Emotional Prego


Dear Emmalyn,
Thanks for telling Mommy her tummy is a “fat balloon.” Actually, it gave me a pretty good laugh. I love you.
Love,
Mommy


Dear Cashier at Chick-fil-a,
Thank you for telling me I have the cutest baby bump. You just made my day.
Gratefully,
Hungry Pregnant Chick


Dear Midnight Heartburn and Acid Reflux,
Stop it. Like. right. n o w. It's not a choice.
Thank you,
Tired at 37 Weeks


Dear Postpartum Depression,
I'm going to kick your ass if you decide to show up for Round Two.
Cordially,
This Rock Star Mom


Dear Baby Girl,
I know your GG wants you to stay put until her vacation time, but she's not the one waddling around with a baby wedged between her pelvis. However, if you don't decide to come early like your big sister, then please be courteous and wait until after Emmalyn's dance recital on the 17th.
Sincerely,
A Mama to Almost Two


Dear Friends & Family,
Thank you for all your sweet calls, texts, and messages checking on me. I greatly appreciate it!
loyally,
katie



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