Thursday, July 13, 2017

Our happy place....

We have spent a lot of time at the I thought I'd share some pictures from yesterday. There are also a lot of photos from my 4th of July post here....that I'm not sure made it up with the videos (but I think I have fixed them and they are working now...) 

This is the view driving in to the lake.  All of the cabins and campers are at the far end towards the end of the video.  It's absolutely gorgeous and in the middle of nowhere:)

There is a large pavilion (seen behind me) where we all gather to eat, talk, etc....big enough to hold LOTS of people!  I can usually be found enjoying a tasty cold beverage in the afternoon....

And then the dock is where we ski, hang out, and swim.

There's a big sandy beach and play area leading up to the point...

Merritt is all smiles when she is outside....

Emma swims NON STOP when we are there.

Her and Brent swam out pretty far on the raft this one day...

Emma asks to go to Beaver Lake ALL THE TIME.  She absolutely loves this place, and we do too.

Successful trip....sleeping girls:)

If you're ever in Northestern NC, check us out......

Tuesday, July 11, 2017

Fourth of July weekend

We kicked off the holiday Friday around noon and headed to the lake.  Brent had to work, so he joined us later that night.  I let Merritt nap for about 45 minutes in the morning so I could finish packing us up.  Wow - it was an ordeal for sure.  We were staying in a travel trailer this time -which is awesome because you are on site and don't have to go anywhere, and you have AC:)  But, it also meant I had to pack food, towels, sheets, beds, etc....  The truck was loaded down and I even had some stuff in my station wagon that Brent was driving down - oh, and of course all my skis!!

We stopped in Rocky Mount to grab a snack at Chickfila and feed Merritt.  That place was packed...and so hard to get to.  If you've ever gone, then you know what I mean.  It's like an episode of Ninja Warrior parking lot or something just for some nuggets and a shake (or the diet lemonade - my new obsession!).

We got to the lake around 2:30pm, and it was sweltering already.  I was glad we had a camper to get into all weekend because it was a hot one...and no rain to cool it off.  After we got unpacked and settled, Emma immediately went in the water....then this happened.  Totally unprovoked.  She had been asking to ski all week and just hopped right on.

I'm a proud mama:)

Emma spent the whole weekend in the water, and I got to ski all 3 events (slalom, trick, and jump).  I had not jumped since 2015, so I was pretty excited too get back, even if I had to take it easy.

Merritt napped in the camper great, and the monitor reaches wayyyy farther than I would have imagined!  I got some good girl time on the beach with these friends;)

I even got a family photo!

Saturday night, we had a huge potluck and then some local singin' girls came and performed for us.  It was awesome - they were awesome!  They are 3 sisters from a super small town who grew up singing at church and now they sing country songs and some contemporary music.  We all just sat on the beach, listened, sang, then even danced.  You haven't lived until you've seen 40+ year olds singing and dancing (and we weren't drunk...just having the BEST time!).  Merritt was asleep, and Emma was running around with her friends  - they even came and danced some.  Brent and I felt so at home, in our happy place, with our little family and great friends.  Such a simple Saturday night, yet so perfect.

Sunday was beautiful - filled with more skiing (for me), and playing in the water.  Brent had to work Monday, so we planned to come home that night.  I would have stayed an extra day with the girls, but Merritt had a cold and fever, and wasn't sleeping well at all.  I really needed to get her back in her own room and crib, and me in my own bed, for some rest.

We got back late Sunday night, and I spent most of Monday doing laundry (I think I did like 8 loads!!).  Emma had stayed up way too late both nights, and spent all day in the sun and water, so I made her chill inside all day.  Brent was off Tuesday, and we slept in (mostly because I was up more than once with Merritt), then headed to a friends' pool for a few hours.

But first....I had my makeup done.....

I may need a touch more think???

The pool was nice because we got to see friends, but I will say 7 months isn't a fun age for this sort of activity.  Concrete everywhere.  Chairs with holes that babies can fall through, and water for drowning.......I think next year will be great.  But this year is filled with having to hold Merritt because there's nowhere to put her, and watch Emma not drown.

Emma loves her life vest.  It's embarrassing, sort of.  She wears it even if she can touch.  I guess I won't complain one bit since I definitely don't have to worry about her drowning:)

Even Merritt joined in on the fun!

We did burgers for takeout and had a low key evening at home - perfect ending to a great long weekend.  Happy summer, all!

Monday, July 10, 2017

Life lately

I cannot believe we are in July already!  Where has summer gone??!!!  In some ways, the days seem to take forever (that's life with a 5 year old and infant and NO camp or school!).  And in others, life is flying by.  Pretty soon, it will be time for school and routine and I will be hating life:(  As much as Emma drives me crazy some days, I do love not having to go anywhere and being lazy all morning!

Merritt had a cold last week and it really threw her off.  She napped ok but was up a lot at night.  I am still nursing her to sleep, and if she wakes up, I have to nurse her to sleep then too.  I hate it, but it's also easy.  One night, she kept waking up everytime I would put her in the crib, so we finally said she would have to just cry.  And cry it out she did.....and it was successful!  The last 4 times we have walked out, she has put herself to sleep within 5 minutes.  It's a relief for sure, so maybe we are getting somewhere with not getting up at night. 

"Is there anything on my face?"

Emma spent some time in the pool on July 4th and developed a weird rash on her body.  We are just not pool people! Luckily, it didn't bother her, but it was weird with little white bumps.

We ran some errands this week, and Emma was a big helper.  We had to go to the mall and library.  Emma loves to push Merritt in the small stroller...and she can actually do it...because she can see over the handles!  We only ran into a few people...

Friday, we went to the Museum of Life and Science with Emma's teacher from last year, and her kids.  We had the best time!  I didn't know it was so cool outside....almost like the zoo!!  I will definitely be coming back!

Merritt was a rock star - perfectly content to sit and ride.  I fed her there once and surprisingly, there were lots of private spaces for that (one of the main reasons I avoid places is because I don't want to nurse in public).

Friday and Saturday nights were rough (read above) - Merritt was getting up more than once, and having a hard time going back down.  I was disheartened, frustrated, and tired.  I may have even had a bit of a temper tantrum too (sorry, Brent).  I try really, really hard to keep a positive attitude about it - because I know that makes all the difference when you're getting up in the middle of the night, sometimes multiple times.  I just get annoyed - I keep thinking "I'm 7 months in....shouldn't we be further than this by now?"  I know, I know...some kids never sleep through the night....yada yada yada.  I think I need a hissy fit every now and then - I've been getting up once or more a night for the past 7+ months.  I've slept through the night less than 5 times.  Emma was a dream sleeper at 3 months:)  People always ask me how it is with their age difference - and honestly, for me it was hard.  Emma was almost 5 - she was at an easy age and now I've completely backtracked.  We've been out of the diaper, nap, travelling with a ton of crap phase for a few years....and now I'm back in it and it's tough.  I never go anywhere.  I've been out in the evening away from Merritt ONE time.  It's also tough thinking about how far apart they are in age and worrying whether they will play well together or if Emma is just too old now.  All these worries weigh me down and of course, when I'm tired and losing confidence in parenting, it's a recipe for disaster.  So, if you think of it and you have any advice, words of wisdom, please share them with me!!

Friday, June 30, 2017

7 months!

Merritt is 7 months old today! 

We often call her Mer-Mer, Da Mer Mer, Fragiles (prounounced fra-geelz, as in when she's moody, she is fra-geely), Poops, Toot Toot, and Baby M. 

She sits up on her own great - rarely falls over!  She is not crawling yet, and doesn't show many signs of it.  We are squealing, but no pronounced sounds yet. 

Merritt takes 2 naps in her crib a day (at least one good one, and we try for a second).  She goes down about 8-9pm and gets up once around 3am (sometimes we skip that and let mom sleep all night!).  But she's only up for about 35 minutes (eating), then down again until 7ish or after. 

Everything goes in her mouth:)  She loves to play with her sister's magnatiles, little people blocks, and whatever is around her.  She loves all baby food and rice cereal, and we are working on a sippy ups with water.  She has the chunkiest legs and she is so squishy!  I love to snuggle and pinch her rolls!

Merritt is a very happy baby.  I hate to toot my own horn, but the girl loves her mama.  She literally squeals with delight when she sees me and if I walk out of the room without acknowledging her, she gets upset.  She does do fine at stay and play at the gym, however (phew!).  Merritt also loves Sunny...she loves any animals actually. 

I cannot believe how far we've come - those first few months were precious, but newborn life is challenging.  I am loving all the new stages of her growing, and we are just so smitten with this smile:)

Tuesday, June 27, 2017

Currently loving.....

Some things I'm loving right now.....

Hillshire snacking plates

Oh my word, I literally have 3-4 a week for lunch.  They are cheap ($3-4), easily transportable, and sooo good.  The Genoa salami and Gouda cheese one is my fave.  I have found them at Walmart, Target, Harris Teeter, and Food Lion....but they are cheapest at Walmart.

Athleta Offshore bathing suit

My mom bought me this suit and I LOVE it.  I have received a ton of compliments when I wear it.  Its reversible too.  For some reason, the high neck seems to balance my hips out...which I like.  And since my boobs are 2 different sizes (you laugh...but it's not funny), this camouflages that.

Shell necklaces

I have been trying to use any spare minute I can to crank out some pieces.  I went through a lot of my beading supplies and had a ton of shells leftover from 2 years ago.  I used to make a lot of shell pieces, then I sort of stopped.  I emailed Nofo and asked if they wanted any, and she said they'd be great for summer. (Lee, the buyer, has a great eye and knows what will sell or not)  So I got to work.  I must admit, I like them more than I thought and am secretly keeping some for myself:)

Underwood rose can wine
I ca only find this at Whole Foods so far, and it's $7 a can....but really nice for the pool.  I do recommend sharing a can if day-drinking.  I found myself a bit loopy after 3/4 one day at the pool (mom-fail).  The rose is my fave, but I've also tried the bubbles...also good.

Sunday, June 25, 2017

Life lately

One of my goals when Emma got out of preschool for the summer was to get Merritt on a better schedule.  For the most part, she was falling asleep in the car on the way to and from school or errands, which was great, until I realized I was never having any time to get anything done, unless you count driving around as "getting something done."  This past week, I've worked really hard on getting her to nap in her crib, which should also help with bedtime.  I am happy to report that, so far it's going really well!!  She has slept in her crib all by two mornings for over an hour.  And one of those days, she took her long nap in the afternoon in her crib, and the other was just a fluke I guess:)  She's also waking up after I nurse her when I place her in the crib and putting herself to sleep - big woohoo!!  And she's done better at night also - 2 nights she slept until 6am!  We are also feeding her more real food - she gets 3 servings of baby food a day - the last one is mixed in with rice cereal made with formula.  And she is nursing around 5 times a day, and maybe once overnight. 
I have to say this has been a confidence and attitude booster for me.  I have been able to get things done, spend time with Emma, and just take a breather. 
Oh...and did I mention Brent has been out of town since Thursday????  Big shoutout to all the moms whose husbands travel regularly for work - yall rock.  I think the hardest part is the emotional exhaustion.  But so far, we have survived!

Cracker Barrel to send off Daddy!  I totally dominated some blueberry pancakes!

I sent Brent morning pics of the kids....the morning is the best time with them.  Everyone is in a good mood:)

I pool crashed again with a friend - I need to decide whether to join or not:)  I put Merritt in the stroller to take with me to the bathroom so I could pee, and poor thing zonked out on the 1 minute walk there.  Emma played hard for 4 hours straight in the pool. 

Merritt has the same disposition as Emma....pretty chill and laid back.  She rarely fusses and is very easy going.  I am one lucky mama, for sure.

I am enjoying seeing them together.  In the car, it's really funny because Merritt is way too nosey to fall asleep sometimes.  All she can do is strain to see what her sister is doing in the seat next to her.

My man, presenting at his conference.  I have no idea what he was talking about...but man, we are proud of him.  I just think he's the best dad, husband, and pharmacist around:)

We have 2 birthday parties this afternoon (one kid, one adult), and then daddy should be home later!  I hope everyone had a great weekend - and cheers for the less humid weather we are having today!!