26 weeks

I was too tired to put on real pants for this week’s photo, so yoga pants will have to do!
Also, in all the hoopla of Leah’s birthday last week, I totally forgot to take a 25 week update picture, whoops! Yet another example she can in the future when she’s complaining about being the forgotten second child. 😉

So this week’s been a tough one because I’m suffering from a bad cold and a cold + pregnancy= death. I’ve felt so exhausted all day, which isn’t been helped by my inability to sleep well at night, due to a stuffy nose and congested cough. I’m hoping it clears up soon! I completed my super fun glucose test today, which resulted in a VERY nauseous afternoon. I do not remember the glucose test making me feel ill when I was pregnant with Leah, but I’m wondering if my bad cold is related. Other updates for this week…(or really, the past 2 weeks!) The belly has REALLY popped! I feel like there has been a LOT of growth between week 23 and 26. Today I saw a nurse who hadn’t worked since Friday and she stopped short and said “Woah! Your stomach grew!!” which I definitely feel is true. She also went on to comment that I “looked huge!” which is just the thing any pregnant woman wants to hear, right?! Cravings haven’t really been too strong the past few weeks…still loving chocolate and dairy with a side of something nice and salty! I found out my other friend who is pregnant in our pregnant trio (we joke that we all signed a pregnancy pact) is also having a GIRL which excites me to no end! Looks like baby will have a built in best friend, and a built in boyfriend! Lucky her! And…..that’s all I can think of. I apologize for the super lame update this week….Seriously, blame the cold; my head feels like it’s stuffed with cotton balls. But, in good news, we are heading up to the island tomorrow for the weekend!! I’m hoping the cool ocean breeze clears out my cold and I’m looking forward to relaxing on the beach with my new library book all weekend. 🙂

Life Lately…

1. Leah is enjoying her first summer Popsicles.  This is the first time she had a Popsicle of her very own (as opposed to just licks of mine or Brett’s) and she is highly enjoying the summer experience. It was actually humorous to watch her the first time trying to figure out how to hold it by the stick, but she got the hang of it pretty quickly. Of course she’s not the neatest Popsicle eater in the world so she generally eats them half stripped down outside on the front porch where she can easily be hosed off. Nothing says summer like sticky toddler Popsicle hands, right??

2. I have been craving milkshakes with this pregnancy like something fierce. I think it’s because my stomach still can’t really handle a bowl of ice cream at night without my stomach starting to hurt, so I’m all about getting mid-afternoon milkshakes. On the healthier side…

I could seriously eat my weight in hummus right now. Cucumbers and peppers dipped in red pepper hummus is seriously my all time favorite snack, closely followed by pita chips dipped in hummus. Which is funny to me since even the sight of hummus made me want to gag when I was pregnant with Leah….

3. Leah is becoming such an independent swimmer!! We bought her a new arm/chest floaty a couple of weeks ago and she just took off in the pool. She loves to kick around like a big girl and jump off the side into the water all by herself. It boggles my mind how she is big enough to be swimming on her own already!!

4. Lucy is getting bigger (and cuter) and she seems to be making it her life mission to destroy our house plant. Every time I catch her ripping off the leaves she immediately stops and runs away, clearly knowing she is being naughty, but as soon as I turn my back once again she is back at it with the plant!! In spite of her shenanigans, we still love her and we are really enjoying having a dog in the family. Leah and Lucy are so cute together and it melts my heart every time I catch them playing and snuggling. (Random side note, we have had a few people jokingly ask us if baby #2 will have an L name to match Leah and Lucy and I adamantly say “NO!” We didn’t purposely name Lucy an L name and, as cute as her name is, I already find myself accidentally yelling Lucy instead of Leah and vice versa so  I can honestly say that baby number 2 will not be joining the L name crew!)

5. My youngest sister had a baby!! Little Madelyn Michelle was born in Alaska on the 4th of July and I am already in love with her puffy lips. Sadly, with them living so far away, it will be awhile before I get to meet my second niece, but until then I am enjoying all the pictures she sends of her! Crazy enough, I am one of 4 girls and our baby will be the 4th granddaughter…..so maybe we will be an all girl family who have all girls!

6. This proud smile coming from the big girl who used the potty for the first time ever!!! I’ll spare you the picture of the actual pee in her little potty (of course I took a picture!!) It was so funny because, although she asks to sit on her potty all of the time, she had yet to actually do anything in the past. Her potty time usually ends after 2 mins where she makes funny grunt sounds and faces and pushes on her stomach to “push the pee pee out” before jumping up and proclaiming that she is “all done! Good girl Leah!” So I really did not expect this time to be any different. I was busy giving Lucy a much needed bath in the tub (which side note, pisses Leah off to no end since that is “my tub!!”) and Leah was sitting on her potty perch watching me. I kept asking if she was all done and she would just give me a calm “nope!” before going back to singing her ABC’s (which tend to stop at “P” before starting all over again…). As I was finishing up blow drying Lucy, Leah proudly jumped up saying “All done!” and I looked in, shocked to see that she had actually gone!!! I think I freaked her out with my intense and over enthusiastic praise, but I was just so shocked!! No, she has yet to do it again, but it was a darn good start!

7. We bought this cute, tiny little baby shirt at a cute little shop down by our beach. Yes, I bought it in blue (with a matching pink one for Leah) because at the time I still honestly believed that baby was a boy! Oh well, baby girl will just be rocking blue and I still think it’s about the cutest thing in the world. I just love teeny tiny baby clothes!!

8. Random, funny story: When the Children’s Hospital where I work opened (we used to be a part of the adult hospital before moving across the street into a free standing hospital) we got to wear these lovely (said sarcastically) silk scarves at our hospital’s grand opening event. The scarves matched the different units color theme and they are printed with the hospital’s logo. Let’s just say that it’s been shoved in the back of my closet for the past 3 years. Well, somehow Leah found it and has decided that she loves this fashion accessory. Brett takes her to school in the morning and apparently they keep it in the back seat for her to wear once she gets into her car seat. The other weekend when we were all in the car together Leah was whining for her “scarf” and I asked Brett, confused, what she meant. “Oh,” he replied calmly, “She wants her riding scarf.” And with that he reached behind him and handed Leah my lovely bright orange hospital scarf that she immediately wrapped around her neck. So there we have it, a riding scarf for Leah. If only we could all be so fancy….

9. I have been attending a spin class and a cardio interval class at my gym 2x a week. I am LOVING spin, as hard as it is, because it really feels like it is keeping my legs (and more importantly, my butt!) in shape during this pregnancy. When I was pregnant with Leah I didn’t really work out much at all, so this is all so different for me this time around. I will definitely be writing a post about my experience with working out while pregnant soon!

10. Leah has been loving trips to the playground, regardless of how hot and humid it is outside. It’s always a battle to get her to leave, but it’s worth it to see how much fun she has! This past time she totally shocked me by climbing up the ladder to the slide all by herself. Usually I hold her under her arms to help her lift her small body from one step to the next, but this time she was adamant about doing it herself. “Mommy I do it!” she would scold me if I tried to touch her so I stood back and watched, amazed, as her strong little arms and legs pulled herself up. I know she’s almost 2 and all, but every time she does something like this it really makes me realize that she is definitely not a baby anymore!! Also, she insists on wearing this exact outfit whenever we go to the park. She calls it her “play suit” and she will run to go find it whenever I say that we are going to walk to the park. Who knows what she will do once she outgrows it!

11. Talking about big girl…this month Leah moved up to the 2-3 year old classroom! She is such a smart girl that they moved her up before she turned 2 because she is definitely ready. I love it because it has a more pre-school structure, as opposed to the baby room she used to be in, and it’s insane to see how fast she learns. The other night at dinner she sang “Twinkle Twinkle” pretty much word for word (complete with hand motions!), which isn’t a song we usually sing at home (here, we’re all about the ABCs and “Wheels on the Bus” these days…) so I knew it was something she learned in school, which I love!! I also love hearing her talk about her friends at school and who she played with that day. As much as working (even part time) can make me feel guilty at times, when I see how verbal Leah is and how much she is learning it really makes me see the value of her few hours of “school” every day!

12. And last, but not least….this girl’s personality lately has been cracking me up. It was funny because the other day my mother-in-law texted me and Brett a picture of two pairs of shoes she bought Leah as options for her flower girl dress for my sister-in-law’s wedding in a few weeks and she asked “Do you think Leah will have a preference?” and I immediately laughed and texted back, “Definitely!!” Lately, this girl has an opinion about EVERYTHING, from the shoes she wears to school, to what color bib she wears, to what she eats for dinner to what pj’s she wears to bed (which is why she usually ends up with some lovely get-ups such as this one-her beloved “kitty cat” shirt with her “doggy” pants). I’m trying really hard to find a balance between encouraging her independence and choice making, but also setting down the rules and making sure she knows that mommy and daddy are in charge. When it comes to pj’s, I could really care less if she wants to put together her own outfit creations, but when it comes to snacks and dinner, she does not get free reign! (Which would basically lead her to eating either crackers, yogurt or Cheerios if she had the choice…) This has led to quite a few fits these days, but we are slowly finding our groove with allowing options, without letting miss bossy pants totally take over. One things for sure, this girl definitely knows what she wants! Although I’m doubting a career as a fashion designer is in her future…. 😉

Leah’s (almost) 2 year old photo shoot.

It hit me the other day that Leah is almost TWO! It boggles my mind how fast time is flying by because in my mind, she’s still this itty bitty baby. As I was pondering about how big my child is getting, it hit me how few real photos we have of Leah. Don’t get me wrong, Brett and I combined probably have well over 3,000 photos of Leah, taken during the first (almost)two years of life, but 95% of those photos are taken by our Iphones. And as nice, and convenient, as it is to always have a camera on your phone to snap an impromptu photo, it’s also a shame because having that convenience means that we pull out our “real” camera a lot less often. So, with that thought, I bugged reminded Brett a million times to make sure he brought his real camera to the island over the weekend so we could do a little photo shoot with Leah on the beach. And our little model gave us well over a hundred adorable shots and I seriously love them all. So, with that, I give you way more photos than you probably ever wanted to see from Leah’s (almost) two year old photo shoot. Grandparents, if you have favorites let me know and I would be happy to send you some prints!

Gone to Carolina in my mind….

Oh my goodness, I have SO many pictures from our time in North Carolina (sadly, 90% of them are crappy Iphone pictures…) and yet, I feel like the photos only represent about 1/3 of our entire trip. We did SO much over the course of our 5 day vacation that it was impossible to catch every moment. But, with that being said, I’ll still bore you with the 50 odd random photos that I did manage to take. I’ll warn you, most of them are of my sister’s baby Amelia, because she seriously is the cutest little squish that I have ever seen!

As silly as it sounds, one of the things that I was MOST excited about with this trip was getting Leah and Milly in the tub together. I love, love, LOVE having a daughter together with my older sister and I take any opportunity possible to have them do things together (including bathing). Lets be honest, there is just something adorable about two chubby babes in the tub together and I was excited that Milly was finally old enough to sit up on her own and splash around with Leah. Leah was pretty thrilled at having a tub mate and I think she is going to greatly enjoy her little sister/brother once they are old enough to play with!

One of the best parts of the trip was our hike in the Blue Ridge Mountains. My sister and her husband had a hiking back pack for Milly, but since we did not have anything for Leah, sadly she and Brett had to miss out on the hike. They drove with us to the base of the trail and then stayed back, letting Leah run around the base and the visitors center, while the rest of us hiked to the top. It was funny because it was 80 degrees out when we left, but once we got up the mountain to the trail, it had dropped over 20 degrees!! My sister Caitlin and I were freezing our butts off, but luckily our brother-in-law came to the rescue with 2 long sleeve t-shirts that he happened to have in his backpack. Unfortunetely is was a super cloudy/foggy day (which did make the trail look pretty cool!) but it made it so we didn’t have the best views at the top. Still a great hike, none the less. My parents have hiked all over North Carolina, but this trail is one of their favorites. They named the hike “Prayer Mountain” due to the great ledge at the top where they sat and prayed a LOT over the year whenever there was a need. I’ll tell you what, there is something about sitting up there, admiring God’s amazing creation, that does fill you with the desire to pray!

And the BEST part was after the hike, when my parents took us to this A-MAZING bakery that sold these pastries called Mountain Eclairs. They were delicious and tough to finish, even when splitting them, because they were SO incredibly huge and filled with so much amazing cream! It definitely was the perfect ending to a hard hike! Leah greatly enjoyed reaping the benefits of the hard hike, without putting in any of the work…

Some pictures from our time out and about my parents gorgeous town of Asheville…..

Also during our visit….
We celebrated some birthdays (both of my sisters had birthdays at the end of May)

Leah waiting for her cake. It was funny, because after having 2 birthday celebrations in a row, every time we sat down to dinner Leah said “Happy B’rday!! Cake!!”

Leah enjoyed walking my parent’s dog, Cooper, and she pretty much insisted on taking Cooper for a walk around the block every day.

These two girlies were so, so cute together. I’ve been worried at how Leah will react with the new baby, but I really think she will be a great big sister. She LOVED playing with Milly, giving her huge hugs around the neck, petting her head, and exclaiming “oh no! Meme no cry!” whenever Milly got upset. It was so much fun getting to watch them interact and it made me even more excited to add number 2 into the mix!

On our last night in town we went to a local minor league baseball game. My brother-in-law is a huge baseball fan and it was adorable to watch him hold Leah on his lap and try to teach her about the game. I thought Leah wouldn’t last long (the game started at 7 and we were there past 9) but she LOVED every minute of “Bay-ball!” and she was happy and content to be passed from lap to lap and watch the game all evening.

I think this picture is deceiving. When I take pictures my bump still looks super small, but I swear it’s there!!! I think I look bigger in person than in pictures, but I know there still isn’t much there, even at 17 weeks. Oh the joys of being tall.

Such a great time and I cannot wait to go back! Asheville is such a hip town, very trendy and artsy with tons of cool shops and restaurants, and yet it also sits surrounded by gorgeous mountains and countryside. I think I would move there in a heartbeat, but I would have to convince this husband of mine. 😉 My wonderful parents just made the visit too much fun, I didn’t want it to end!! Until next time, North Carolina!

Father’s Day Weekend

We headed up to the island last weekend to celebrate Father’s Day with the whole Becker clan.. It was funny because a few months ago Brett’s sister Lauren texted us and asked if she and her fiance, Jessup, could come down to FL for the weekend to visit. We, of course, said “sure!” and were excited to have a weekend to get to know the (soon to be!) new member of the Becker family. Well, then Brett’s father and brother realized that they could plan a FL business trip for the week following Father’s Day, so they, along with Brett’s mom and Brett’s brother’s wife, decided to all head down to FL for a fun family filled weekend at one of our favorite destinations! My sister-in-law and her husband are also expecting a new baby, just one month before us! It was fun getting to see them and having some good pregnant/baby talk with my sister-in-law. 🙂

The weather started off iffy. The beginning of summer in South Florida brings rain and thunderstorms everyday and, looking at the weather forecast for the weekend, I was a bit worried that we would be losing our beach weekend, but the weather turned out fine! Sunny and warm, with a great breeze, during the day and amazing thunderstorms in the evening/night. Saturday night we all sat on the back patio and watched one of the most intense thunderstorms I have EVER seen! It’s insane to watch storms right on the beach because you can look out over the ocean and see the rain coming down in sheets. The storm brought some crazy lightning and some of the loudest thunder I have ever heard. We even witnessed lightning strike the sand right in front of the condo! Surprisingly, Leah sat on my lap through most of the storm, content as long as I was there to give her a snuggle, but at some point the thunder got crazy loud (which resulted in a few involuntary screams) and she finally decided that she had had enough storm watching.

We brought Lucy with us and she had a blast seeing everyone! My brother and sister-in-law are the ones who gave us Lucy to begin with (they have 2 goldens who had 9 puppies!) and it was like a family reunion with them! We brought her to the beach on Saturday and it was so much fun watching her run around the beach and play in the sand. She liked the water, but wasn’t too sure about the loud waves so we had to carry her past the wake and then let her swim in. Some pictures from our time on the beach:

15 weeks!

Leah reading with Lucy once we got back inside. These two have the sweetest relationship!!

Sunday we went out to lunch to celebrate Father’s Day. Although I missed my own father on this special day, it was great being able to celebrate with my amazing husband and father-in-law! After lunch we had a fun little family photo shoot with the couples (Although we seem to have missed taking a picture of Lauren and her fiance Jessup!)

Hope everyone had a wonderful Father’s Day weekend! We are off to North Carolina on Thursday to see (almost) my entire family and I am so excited (and I’ll be honest, I may be MOST excited to hug my squishy niece, Milly!) I will be back with, I’m sure, a ton of pictures!

Lately I’m Loving…..

1. This funny girl’s poses when I go to take her picture. Not too long ago, it was tough to get her to even LOOK at the camera, but now, this girl is always ready with a “cheese!” and a pose. The other day when I went to snap a quick pic to show my sister her new outfit, she stuck her hands on her waist and threw out the perfect hip thrust, all while screaming “CHEEEEESE!” and smiling directly at the camera. Where does she come up with these poses?! Who knows, but one things for sure, it sure does make taking pictures of this little model amusing, wondering what new pose she’s going to give me next.

2. How happy this guy was to drive around our neighbor’s 1960’s VW bug convertible for his birthday. We have the COOLEST neighbor named June. She’s about 80 something years old and this woman can talk your ear off about anything and everything. A strong Christian, she will ask you if you love the Lord within minutes of meeting her, and she has the strongest faith I’ve ever seen. She has lived in her house since the ’60s (She’s a neighborhood original!) and she knows everyone in town, even telling me what pharmacist is best at Target. The other day we were out talking with her and she gave us a CD that she just recorded of Gospel and Folk songs that she wrote herself! Her band is called June and the June Bugs and they are currently recording a new CD. I love it! Anyways, she has the coolest stuff in her garage, including this car and a surf board that has Brett drooling. Luckily, she is the sweetest woman in the entire world and she encourages us to drive this baby around whenever we want! So, for Brett’s birthday we took down the top, somehow finagled Leah’s car seat to strap into the back seat, and went cruising around town, down to the beach. And that husband of mine was in heaven!!

3. How Leah says “Cheerios.” I want to remember it forever. “Che-chows” she asks for ever morning, “che-chows?” It sounds so gosh darn adorable coming out of her mouth and Brett and I have even found ourselves saying che-chows, hoping the name sticks around forever.

4. This proud little smile she gives me when she sits and eats at her big girl table instead of her highchair. Someone is a baby no longer!

5. Friday night pizza picnics that turn into summer nights at the playground. There is this pizza place downtown that Brett and I are obsessed with. Brett, having grown up right outside of NYC, considers himself to be a bit of a pizza connoisseur, and I have to admit, the man knows his stuff. I still remember one of our first dates where he drove me all over Long Island, tasting the pizza at all his favorite shops. Luckily he married a woman who loves pizza just as much as he does, and, when we moved to FL, the first thing we did was search out the best pizza places. I remember the first time we stepped into this pizza place. Honestly, you can’t even call it a restaurant. It’s just one long skinny strip of hot, un-airconditioned, slightly dirty, space with a long counter and signed dollar bills taped all over the walls. “This is the one” Brett nodded, convinced. And when we took our first bite of those (huge!) pieces, we were convinced. The place is basically a dirty hole in the wall with signs taped all over the counter (“cash only!” Don’t ask for forks or knives!” “If you annoy us, we will ask you to leave!” etc) but the pizza speaks for itself and we are hooked. It’s the perfectly place to grab a few slices before watching Leah run around the park, going up and down the slide a million times.

6. Leah’s obsession with selfies. I have a million and 5 photos on my cell phone that either look like this, or just pictures of her forehead.

7. My girly girls obsession with hair bows and accessories. As soon as she wakes up she is asking “bow? bow?” and after I stick one in she will give herself a good look in the mirror, complete with a head tilt and an “ohhh pretty!”

8. Weekend IKEA dates. We love going, even if we don’t plan on buying anything. We head there early, sit in the cafe and enjoy a cinnamon roll and a cup of coffee, before pursuing the displays. We usually head home with something small, cute potted plants or new picture frames, but it’s really more about the experience than the actual shopping!

9. Our quick one night visit with grandpa and the Winnie the Pooh he brought with him (which Leah is now OBSESSED with!) My dad had a quick business meeting in town so we got to host him for one night before he flew out. It was so great having him and Leah made sure to get in a LOT of grandpa snuggles before he left. Luckily we already have a trip planned to see grandpa and grandma in North Carolina next month, so we don’t have to wait long until we see him again! Until then, Leah carries around her new friend everywhere and Winnie is always there at night to snuggle Leah to sleep.

10. Our new power washed driveway and painted front porch. I’ve said it before, but we live in a cute 1960’s ranch and the front porch and driveway definitely hadn’t been washed since….ever. They were both black and disgusting looking it just really ruined the curb appeal. So for Mother’s Day, Brett spent HOURS, power washing the porch and driveway and then painting the porch a gorgeous greyish/blue. I cannot get over how amazing it looks and how it totally changes the look of our house. Next up is painting that front wall a fresh white.

Easter

I’m seriously so behind. I contemplated just skipping blogging about Easter all together, but some of the pics from the weekend are just so darn cute I couldn’t bare not sharing them. So I’ll just be that person who blogs about Easter 3 weeks late….

Would it surprise anyone to hear that we spent Easter up on the island? Probably not as it tends to be “our place to go” for weekend get-a-ways! Brett also had multiple family members visiting for the weekend, so it was fun to spend time with everyone. The weather was gorgeous and Leah shone as the center of everyone’s attention all weekend. I swear that girl just lights up with all the attention she gets from her nana and papa (plus some cousins and aunts and uncles!) She went up to the island with Brett’s parents one day before we did, so she got to spend some one-on-one alone time with everyone before mommy and daddy got there. It was the first time she had ever been away from both me and Brett and (silly enough) I started crying as she drove away with nana on Thursday night. Brett just patted my back and gave me a look like “hey there crazy, calm yourself, it’s just one night…” Obviously I knew she would be fine but she seemed like such a big girl, spending the night with her nana and papa without us!! Of course I was itching to see her Friday afternoon and we had a perfect movie moment of her running into my arms when we walked through the front door. 🙂

Easter was a fun, family filled day that started with an Elmo Easter basket in the morning, followed by church and brunch and ended with an Easter egg hunt at the country club. I had a bit of a “mom moment” during the Easter egg hunt. There were TONS of kids, and the egg hunt officials split them up by age group in different areas to find their eggs. Makes sense, except for the fact that Leah’s age group was 5 and under! I’m sorry, but a 5 year old and a 1 1/2 year old’s ability to find Easter eggs are a bit different. Of course the official yelled “Go!” and off the big 5 year olds went, shoving all the little kids and snatching all the eggs they could get their hands on. And then there was my child, running AFTER the big kids and following them around as they go from egg to egg. And yes, my logical side told me that it didn’t matter if Leah found any eggs, it wasn’t like she was going to get to eat the tootsie rolls hidden inside of them or anything, but the crazy mom part of me thought “this won’t do” and the next thing I knew, I had snatched 3 eggs before a 5 year old could get his grubby little paws on them and set them in an obvious place for Leah to “find” and put into her basket. And of course she was THRILLED when she saw those 3 eggs so it made my crazy mom moment all worth it! Plus! As the Easter egg hunt ended in .5 seconds, we heard a little 2 year old crying behind us that he didn’t get any eggs. Brett quickly snatched up one of Leah’s eggs and made a quick donation to the mother so she could sneakily set it down and yell “Look over here!” And seeing that little boy’s face light up was definitely worth it. So all the 5 year olds paraded back into brunch with their lot of 18 eggs a piece but Leah was thrilled as punch with her 2 Easter eggs. So I would say her first Easter egg hunt was a success!! 🙂

So, overall a wonderful island weekend as always. Now for some cute family Easter pics!