Wednesday, March 7, 2018

February headlines

March is here, but I'm not ready to leave February behind! Bennett bear turned 6 years old in a super hero flash. We celebrated with a feast fit for a king at Gigi and Poppy's, then a special Valentines day dinner at our house with Grandma and family. His main gift was a whopping whirlwind trip to his favorite place, Great Wolf Lodge. He'd been planning his birthday at GWL for the last year, so of course we had to oblige!
Speaking of Valentines, this darling daughter got her first rose from the special man in her life-daddy!
Amelia is 3 and a half months old now and a doll baby. She is increasingly alert and growing much faster than I would like, practicing sitting in her blue bumbo(sorry girl, you have 3 brothers!) and bearing weight on her legs to stand. She's a healthy little girl with a good appetite and the cheeks to show it! She has brought so much joy to us already, and it's no surprise that I'm loving all the twirly girly things. :-)
 On the school front we've been busy with CC and homeschool, making new friends and seeing the world...ahem, our small piece of it anyways!

Tuesday, February 6, 2018

Full hands

Little miss is 2 months old already, and Spring is in the air! Not really, but wishful thinking is. :-) It's February 6th and the birth month of my favorite Valentine, Bennett Shepherd. For his birthday this year he's chosen to do a trip to Great Wolf Lodge, sprinkled with a few other family things. Pictures to come-maybe(because, real life)! Fair warning this post may be a little stream of conscious, because it's nap time here, the coffee is hot and I was in the writing way.

I'm just loving this season of life at home with my kids. The big boys are growing into more independent and interesting creatures, and speaking of creatures we often joke that Asher is our "class pet." Those trying twos have hit in full force, but we are ready and the bathroom plunger is on standby haha! Thankfully the big boys are I make a nice team to tame the wild child that is our sweet and sour Asher Elliot(okay okay, he's mostly sweet!). I jest, but truly the poor toilet has seen its share of foreign objectS lately. Amelia is a doll baby. The boys, big and small, dote on her daily and she really is a dream come true. I am drinking in this baby stage now because it goes by much too fast. Already she's holding her head up more and more, almost rolling to one side and cooing up a storm. We think she's going to be one chatty little girl. Plus, I can't even with all the bows. #obsessed :-)
We are all forging forward on the homeschool horizon. The flexibility it's given us in this season of life is invaluable. The boys are continuing to thrive in our local CC group, and I just signed them up for Spring soccer. They are currently gearing up for the annual Pine Car Derby with their fun "Rangers" group at church(Bennett just joined as he is turning 6!) and Evan is enjoying his weekly piano lessons.  Also, Asher is officially registered for preschool for the next school year! Let the backpack brainstorming begin...
With four kids under 7 it's no wonder that life seems to be moving quickly. I'm relieved to add that having baby girl join our crew hasn't slowed us down or divided our time too much-those later babies just get more and more flexible! We seem to have found a nice, new stride and I wouldn't change it for anything. Even this morning was a pretty impromptu adventure, full of schoolwork for the bigs, lots of eukalale playing by Asher(it has been thus confiscated for the day), a trip to the library followed by exploring a new park and a mile hike around a new lake, and topped off with hot, heavenly McDonalds french fries. Currently the littles are quietly napping while the bigs are out back jumping on our trampoline with neighbor friends. If someone would just deliver to me a tall White Mocha from Starbucks, it might just be the perfect day!  Extra whip cream please, mmmmm...

At a recent marriage conference we attended through our church, Dr. Paul Tripp reminded me that "gratitude is the DNA of joy." What a great theme for me as I am planting seeds in the trenches of many small children. I am so so grateful for the opportunity have this front row seat to my kids everyday, every moment learning and growing. It's beautiful and fun and funny, give or take the tube of toothpaste in the toilet which I will politely ask my hubby to get out when he gets home. Have I noted that he is an excellent fisherman? ;-) Seriously though the boys did all get fishing poles for Christmas, so I do predict some lake trips in our future. He took them out for their first go recently and they caught some seaweed...everyone has to start somewhere!

PS-Our little piece of North Carolina was a winter wonderland just a few weeks back, and I just had to share these pictures for posterity's sake-and as a reminder to myself to pick up my real camera more often! I think a snow day blog may be in que..

Friday, January 19, 2018

Introducing our dream girl

I can hardly believe it's been nearly two months since we welcomed our dream girl into the family. Miss Amelia Noelle was born on November 21st at 7 pounds and 5 ounces of pure sugar. Here are some pictures from our first few days together at the hospital. At first glance she looked just like Asher except with a full head of dark hair.

Sidenote: Per her beautiful dark hair and rosy complexion it's been decided that she will be Snow White for her first Disney princess Halloween.
"Is she still a girl?" I asked just seconds after her birth from behind the blue curtain. This mom of three boys can still hardly believe her luck! Nice to meet you girl of my dreams. 
 Her first bath, and manicure. :-)
Gigi and Poppy with their new grandgirl and the traditional first "Happy Birth-day" cake.
Thankfully, my recovery from this fourth cesarean has far exceeded my (albeit low) expectations. Praise the Lord! In fact, I've told many people that this has been the best recovery of all my babies, and for that we are so grateful. No doubt the amazing meals and support received from family and friends made our holiday homecoming and transition to a family of six that much more smooth and special.
Is there anything sweeter than a sleeping baby?! Maybe tiny baby hands...
As far as newborns go, Amelia is a lovely baby. She's been a great nurser from hour one and sleeps wonderfully at night-thank you Jesus! Of course she wakes to eat, but goes right back down easily and without a fuss, and at 2 months old is already giving me consistent 5-6 hour stretches of sleep. At her one month well baby appointment she was up to a whopping 9 and a half pounds and is continuing to grow and thrive in every way. This lady baby graced us with her first smiles at 4 weeks old and is already cooing up a storm...I predict girly giggles on the way soon!
As far as her personality goes, the Lord has truly blessed us with the most content babe. He certainly knew what we needed from number 4!  She must know how loved and adored she is! Her big brothers dote on her daily, and as the saying goes she is truly daddy's girl and mommy's world.
Sometimes I wish I had a forcefield to protect her from her brothers, other times I think "who doesn't love a good smothering every now and again?"

This new baby stage is my absolute favorite, and knowing she's our last little one makes it all the sweeter. I have a feeling we're going to need to watch out because this one is going to be spoiled rotten! Having a girl has always been a dream of mine and I feel so incredibly blessed to be her mommy.
Ps-Girl shopping is the BEST!

Thursday, November 16, 2017

Asher is two!!

This soon to be big brother is TWO years old today! We are so thankful for this beautiful boy of ours. He loves his the great outdoors, animals, cookies and all things musical. A true boy at heart, he is all about balls and bikes. Though he plays the shy guy while we're out and about, he is a goofball at home and has the sweetest smile and best laugh. And not to mention-awesome hair! Beloved by his brothers, he is spoiled rotten-and he knows it. 

Two weeks ago we celebrated his birthday in Fall fashion with friends and family- just in case baby girl decided to make an early debut. It was a perfect Fall afternoon and Asher loved playing with his sweet little friends in our backyard. We are so thankful for all of the thoughtful gifts and love for this growing boy of ours.
 Happy birthday Asher, we love you!