Wednesday, December 28, 2016

Twinkle Toes | Year Three

Our super mischievous Elf on the Shelf, Twinkle Toes turned 3 years old this year! Grace was way more into her little elf than ever before and thank God for that because we used Santa’s little helper to keep our gal in line all month long, ha! Before you judge just know that a lot of parents do this and it works like a charm. Especially when you have a non-stop, often sassy 4½ year old. ;)

You don’t want to pick up your toys? Twinkle Toes is watching you, Gracie!

You were such a great kid at your doctor’s appointment – look at this little surprise TT brought you!

You need to start listening to Mama in the mornings or Twinkle Toes is going to report back to Santa that you’ve been naughty!

We definitely used our super elf for positive reinforcement more than anything else, but on those naughty days, girlfriend came in handy. Thanks T!

Here’s a few of Gracie’s favorite visits from TT this past month… 

The Bean loved finding TT in her tub and asked to take a picture of her with my phone, so this photo is courtesy of our gal who – for the record didn’t break the rules and touch Twinkle Toes a single time all month. She was so worried that she would lose her magic and didn’t dare come in contact with her. It was the cutest. J

And in completely unrelated news, here’s a picture of my beautiful 6 MONTHS prego wife lookin’ all cute with her baby bump while eating saltines (like always). Love you baby boy!

* 3 days to week 25 and VIABILITY *

Tuesday, December 20, 2016

Our SUPER Christmas Card // 2016

Now that 2 weeks have passed since mailing out our annual family Christmas card, I can share our superhero Christmas card with Blogland! 

And because our scanner is broken, this is a picture of a picture... but still, Yay!

When the Bean joined our tribe, I promised the wife that I'd only make her suffer through family pictures once a year, and because we took professional pictures to announce our pregnancy in November, a Superhero Christmas card it is! 

I'm so glad Georgia doesn't enjoy getting gussied up and didn't want to take holiday photos like most years because I LOVE the way our card turned out! I plan to frame this for W nursery and will forever have the happiest memories when I look back at it!

Now for some blog goals:
1. Write blog post about our participation in the 2016 Twinkle Light Parade. This was the first year we actually were on a float in the parade and it was so much fun!
2. Write blog post about our Operation Christmas Child event, which took place this past weekend. :)
3. Share this years pictures of our Elf on the Shelf, Twinkle Toes! She was even more active around the house this year than previous years, lol!

Here's hoping I can manage to do this before the month ends... I think I can, I think I can! 

Merry EVERYTHING, friends!   

Saturday, December 10, 2016


We took the Bean to meet Santa this afternoon and watched happily as our big gal took her last picture by herself with Mr. Claus! Next year she’ll have a cute little 9 month old brother sitting next to her and the thought of that makes my heart want to burst into a million pieces!

We did another mini Santa shoot this year with our photographer Lindsey, who we adore. Our gal didn’t smile for Santa pics until we starting going to Lindsey and her husband and I’m not sure how she does it, but we always get the most beautiful, smiley picture of Gracie and Santa with them! I’ve framed my favorite Santa pic of the Bean in different decorative Christmas frames every year since her first Christmas. During the month of December, when the house is all festive and covered in Christmas, I display her collection of Santa pics on the entryway table and I LOVE looking at her with St. Nick through the years. It’s hard to believe that this will be her 5th Christmas! Time flies way to quick when you’re a parent!  

When Santa asked Grace what she wanted for Christmas, she responded, “I want a scooter to ride around the neighborhood and I would like for it to be pink, please”. I’m thinking that the Bean’s Gaga must be a mind reader because she has already purchased that very thing for her baby girl. Gracie’s going to be so excited!

My whole heart in one picture. ¤

And last but not least, Mama’s favorites of our stinker and St. Nick through the years! 

Happy 15 days until Christmas! :)

Thursday, December 8, 2016

My Gratitude List | 22 Weeks

In just 3 days we’ll be 22 weeks! Yay, yay, yay! Thanksgiving has come and gone and guess what is a mere 18 days away? Christmas, you guys! Christmas! I feel like there’s so much to be thankful for in our lives right now that I don’t even know where to begin. With that being said, and in the spirit of the holiday season, below is my 2016 gratitude list that I wanted to share because I’m feelin’ all the feels these days! But before you read on, please consider yourself warned… I’m in a happy, cheesy, over the top thankful place right now and I fear it borders on annoying… Sorry, not sorry! ;) 

1. I am thankful for the wish that worked

On the night before Thanksgiving, Georgia and I were doing dishes, mopping and running through our usual holiday host preparations. As we were cleaning the house, I came across something that immediately brought me to tears. Sitting on our kitchen window ledge behind a frame, was our turkey wishbone from last year. G had carved the turkey and set the wishbone aside for us, and when we made our wish on that cold afternoon, we didn’t even have to tell each other what we wished for. It went without saying that we were both wishing for a baby. By that point we were almost 2 years into ttc #2 and had officially decided to take a break for a year or possibly forever from trying with me. Our hearts were beaten up and fragile and we were slipping into a place of negativity. Still, despite all of these things, we somehow held onto our faith and still had hope. I don’t know how we did because it seriously felt like everything that could have gone wrong last year did and yet, we believed that our family wasn’t complete and our baby was still making his or her way to us. When I found our wishbone from last year, it filled my heart with feelings of gratitude and happiness knowing that there was a plan for our family that we did not yet know. Who would have thought that our 2015 wishbone would be our wish that worked! 

2. I am thankful for the health of my children

I think this is the first time that I’ve referred to Grace and baby boy as my children. Just writing that makes me so happy! I feel that good health is something many of us don’t think about, especially if we’re blessed to not have to think about it. This past week we received the most unbelievably amazing news from Gracie’s cleft lip medical team. We went in to have our consultation with the Bean’s Pediatric Oral Surgeon regarding operation #3, dental surgery following her 5th birthday. The appointment required that we complete a ton of paperwork; they examined Gracie’s mouth, teeth and gums and took a bunch of x-rays. Following the complete examination, Gracie’s surgeon came in to tell us that she would NOT need a 3rd cleft operation when she’s 5!!!!!!!!!!!!! No major bone graphing/dental surgery, no harvesting bone from her little hip and no hospital stays for our sweet girl! It appears that the tooth that grew in the split in her gum (that they said would never come in) has pushed her bone into place and will continue to do so as she grows! They told us that they will reevaluate yearly but all looks great and just like that, our minds were blown. Even at 4 ½ years old, our sweet gal had already started stressing about the operation, even though we very rarely brought it up. She would ask questions about it all the time wanting us to explain to her just exactly how much it would hurt, so to be able to tell her that there would be no surgery – well there are just no words for how incredible that felt to say, for us mama bears. God is good. 

And the good health news doesn’t stop there! In our 20-week anatomy scan, not only did everything about our little dude look and measure perfectly, but we were also able to confirm that the blood test was correct and he is most definitely a boy! He showed us his beautiful face, which is something Grace didn’t do until G was 28-weeks. His upper lip looked just as we hoped, cleft free! :)

3. I am thankful for Our Village of friends and family

They say it takes a village to raise a child and I couldn’t agree more! Grace is in her 3rd and last year at her preschool and even though we’re only half-way through the school year, It makes me so sad to think of the day we have to say farewell to her teachers, school buds and all of the amazing parents we’ve meet throughout her pre-k years. Georgia and I have become close friends with many of the parents and have just loved watching our gal build friendships with truly kind kiddos her age. It’s been the most amazing experience and we can’t wait for W to be a student there, one day too! I know our little dude will love it as much as Gracie did!

Gracie’s amazing school, the overwhelming love and support of her grandparents and all the aunties, uncles and friends who have showered our gal with love over the years have helped to shape her future in ways they will never truly understand. To say she is blessed would be an understatement!

4. I am thankful for our super speedy pregnancy this round!

I mean really, how are we nearly 22 weeks? I know that many people who read this will think, well of course it’s been fast for you… you’re not the one pregnant! The thing is, even Georgia feels that it’s flying by! We’re already passed the half-way point, coming up on 22 weeks and come the week of Christmas, we’ll reach *Viability* @ 25 weeks! Talk about the best Christmas present a parent could ask for! I know W is healthy and doing great, but I’m still itching to get to week 25, which I’m sure will come fast!

5. I am thankful for my selfless wife and our 7 years of marriage

The wife and I just celebrated our 7th wedding anniversary, which is just crazy! We kept it low key and stayed in, as is always the preference of homebodies like us. This 7th one really snuck up on me! With our anniversary falling so close to Christmas, we wanted to forgo gifts this year so that we could purchase our dream dishwasher and that’s exactly what we did! You know you’re officially an old married couple when you would prefer to purchase new appliances rather than get jewelry, haha! Seeing G pregnant again has made me fall even more in love with her (because she’s seriously the cutest prego ever) and even though there have been many times this pregnancy that I’ve feared that G may smother me with a pillow in my sleep, there is no one I would rather have as my person. Love you baby.

And here are a few more pictures from our Thanksgiving and Friendsgiving celebrations! Even Gracie got in on the action and prepared a feast of her own! Wishing you all an amazing December with your loved ones!

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