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All is safely gathered in

At the end of the day, our house has a certain peace about it. Or maybe it’s that my heart feels at peace. A new baby brings a bit of heaven wherever she goes, and I think that’s got something to do with it. She is snuggled in the crook of my arm after drinking all the milk she can handle (milk drunk baby, eyelids floating up now and again) and all my wee bairns are sound asleep on their beds, and I feel happy. I know the dishes are in the washer, and the house is mostly picked up, and my outdoor string lights are still making me happy when they flick on each night and cast a romantic glow. Home. We have lived here 2 years, and the things inside our house evolve and move over time, but there is a feeling that pervades no matter what and makes it OUR home.

We had a busy day today, starting with newborn photos at 9 am. I got out of bed a little earlier today, bleary-eyed and quite hungry. Got all 6 of us (weird to say that) ready in time, and finished 3 hours later. It’s an endeavor, but so worth it to have those pictures later on. I can’t wait to see them–I know we got some beautiful shots! I promised the big kids slurpies if they did well during photos. They get excited about it, but always end up wanting gum or other things instead.

Then this afternoon Raimo aka super dad took the kids to the beach, and then to the pool at the Y afterward. Meanwhile, Giselle and I passed the freak out (hahah!) for almost 3 hours. We slept so long, the AC went into eco mode and stopped running because it sensed no one was home! I woke up in a sweat and had to crank it back down, or rather tap it back down on my iPhone app.

For dinner we went to Subway, and it was disappointing. Isn’t it always? But it was an easy outing and the kids were pleasant and Giselle slept in her car seat the whole time. My recovery has been relatively quick this fourth time around, and while I have not dealt with as much postpartum pain as I did previously, I keep realizing I’m still in recovery and need some rest. I’ll walk too far and realize I’m extremely sore, or I’ll move a new way and realize that that muscle still hurts, or I’ll sit straight down on my tailbone which still hurts. I also have that special pain in the middle of my back from breastfeeding so much (not to mention the actual “breast” pains). Again, I feel very lucky that I’m up and about so much more and feeling pretty well. Giselle and I are taking advantage of Raimo’s 6 week paternity leave, and we rest and cuddle and let dad be with the older kids.

It’s 10:45 so I really do need to get to sleep. When I feed her this late, Elle has been waking up around 2:30 or 3 and then 6 for feedings. It’s really not bad — I’m happy to get a 4 hours stretch. I think she’s adapting to “night time” sleep as opposed to daytime. I must say I’m getting pretty tired getting up at 6 because that’s an impossible time for me to fall back asleep. Hence the naps.

Also, here is the smiley face breakfast Rose made me all by herself yesterday. She has been delightful today. Being helpful, being nice to Finn and not trying to one-up him, waiting to eat her chips at Subway till he finished his sandwich like her. What a sweetie.

Also, Giselle weighed in at 6 lbs 14 oz at her second doctors visit yesterday, so she has regained her birthweight and is doing well! She is 12 days old!

Goodnight!

Zonk!

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In dreams

What are you dreaming about, little one? Your eyelids are fluttering, you smile occasionally, sometimes you breathe a little more quickly. But can you have any thoughts at this point? Do you know anything other than “milk” and the comfort that is mother’s voice? You startle so easily in your sleep. It’s incredible how you can sleep through the noise of your siblings and our hectic household, yet I bump a pillow a few inches away from you and your arms fly into the air. Dainty as the princess and the pea–you feel everything? I love your sleepy days and honestly dread the possibility of you waking from this coma and going into constant crying mode, as many newborns do. You are too perfect, too easy! Let’s keep it this way as long as we can! It’s unfair really because right now, of all time with babies, is the best time to take you out because you’re so easy. Trips to the grocery, movies, nail salon, you name it… are all so easy because you’re ASLEEP! And as soon as I start to feel well again postpartum, you will be crying! Okay I’m only half-serious. I do want you to wake up so we can get to know you even better. You wake up for little brief periods of time, and I try to bring my face in close so you can see me and start to know ME. Yep, it’s me. The one that gets up with you all night long, that speaks to you when you’re sleeping, that totes you happily all around the house like a trophy. I won this. I made this! Look how great she is! These are days that I spend wondering who you will become. You have already surpassed my wildest dreams, so really where can you go wrong? I already love you so much💗

Love,

Mom

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So Tired

I have been spending a lot of my breastfeeding hours catching up on blogs that I like. As in years worth of content because I don’t really follow any of them closely. But I love NieNieDialogues and she shared this quote by Neil A Marriott, and it rang true with me and my eyes burst into tears when I read just the first line (mostly because I’m just so tired, and will only become more tired in the coming days).

“My days were full of forgettable things like folding laundry,

reading children’s books, and putting casseroles together for dinner.

Sometimes in the harbor of our homes, we can’t see that by the simple,

consistent acts—including family prayer, scripture study,

and family home evening—great things are brought to pass.

But I testify that these very acts carry eternal significance.

Great joy comes when those little boats—our children—grow

into mighty seafaring vessels filled with gospel light and ready to

“embark in the service of God.” Our small acts of faith

and service are how most of us can continue in

God and eventually bring eternal light and glory to our family,

our friends, and our associates.

You truly carry a circle of influence with you!”

Neil A Marriott

Thanks Neil! Another favorite scripture that comes to mind is D&C 64:33 “Wherefore, be not weary in well-doing, for ye are laying the foundation of a great work. And out of small things proceedeth that which is great.”

Send me all the mom quotes! Diving back in with FOUR! 😘😨😜🤪🤩😍😍😍😍

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Blessing Dress

I had a hard time finding any kind of blessing/christening gown for baby Giselle in stores or even online. It must not be as big of a deal as it used to be. However I came across one website that had the most stunning handmade gowns! They are pretty pricey and out of the budget, but so beautiful!

I love the pink underlay with this gorgeous long lace. The short version is still pretty stunning. And a flower crown would be so cute!

Another sweet one- this one has a vintage feel and is just so pretty. I maybe even like it better– tough choice between the two. I think it would suit Giselle 💕

And another all lace and my third favorite. I love how they all have matching accessories, bonnets and booties and headbands. I definitely choose bonnet for this special occasion 🙂 Wish me luck in my shopping journey!

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Giselle Juliette

My beautiful baby is here! She was due August 6, but came July 21 at 4:08 am. Labor was only 3 hours from the time I woke up at 1 am till her birth. We flew to the hospital and it was all very fast. She came into the world sunny side up which explained some of the extra special discomfort I was experiencing! I was actually screaming/ making a lot of noise while pushing, which was totally instinctive and spontaneous, not something I was really conscious of. It was painful and made me all the more motivated to make it end. Funny how there are similarities between my girls–Rose was turned sunny side up too, and both girls seem to like having a hand up by their cheek all the time (Rose was even born that way, and we saw Giselle’s little hand there by her cheek in the 20 week ultrasound). And like Berrett, Giselle wasn’t breathing when she was born. I pushed both of them out as fast as I possibly could because I felt so much pain. The nurse said there wasn’t a chance for their throat to clear out during delivery so they had to do it for them. Things kind of righted on their own, and I was able to hold her soon– no NICU thankfully!

Baby was 6 lb 13 oz and 19 inches. Her head seemed so very tiny! I couldn’t get over it! Her tiny features and tiny face. Her little face was a surprise to me, as all my other babies have been. It’s so surreal to finally see them for the first time and see who they are, who’s been inside me all that time. They each have their own look, though they definitely look like siblings. She is soooo sleepy and has been sleeping nonstop all week. Today I would have hit 39 weeks– she is 9 days old! Better out than in! Love her so much and feel like our family is more complete with her in it! Her siblings adore her and so do I!

Now a photo dump of he first 9 days of life! I’m obsessed!

2 days old

1 week old and a vision in yellow 🙂

RAIMO’S birthday was the 29th, just 8 days after Giselle. These summer birthdays are gonna give me a run for my money every year; July 6, July 21, July 29, and August 16. I better start saving up for next year!

I thought I was funny and put all 33 candles on RAIMO’S cake. Put out the fire!

These are beautiful days!

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The Bookshop on the Corner by Jenny Colgan- 5 stars! This author has the most relatable voice and wonderful descriptions of life in the Scottish countryside and all things books. A great story of living out your dream, with a side of romance.

Island of the Blue Dolphins by Scott O’Dell- 4.5 stars. Very unique and exciting! Newberry Medal winner; Even though it’s written for children, I thought it was so interesting reading about a little Native American girl living and surviving all alone on an island. I read it in a couple of days

The Secret Life of Bees- 5 stars; loved it– kept me interested the whole time. Lots of beautiful imagery and interesting symbols and strong women. I know there’s a movie but I can’t imagine it being as good as the book.

Little Beach Street Bakery by Jenny Colgan- 4 stars; another nice novel by Jenny Colgan. So far, The Bookshop on the Corner is still my favorite. This one takes place on a remote island, and the woman finds herself through baking and starting a new life.

Breakfast at Tiffany’s by Truman Capote- 4 stars; Kind of amazing that this same author wrote In Cold Blood. This story is such a different direction, and would have been more interesting I think if I wasn’t so familiar with the movie.

Cafe by the Sea by Jenny Colgan- 4 stars; I’m starting to see a pattern in these Jenny Colgan books: girl finds herself stuck in dreary job in the city, has an opportunity to move to rural country somewhere in Britain or Scotland and pick up a trade she is passionate about and fall in love. This one was pretty enjoyable.

I have a few more books that were in the works that I’m pretty sure will fall to the wayside since I just had a baby 🙂

Movies:

Saw Giselle the Russian ballet live at the movie theater. Loved it!