Saturday, December 31, 2016

In 2016, We...

This is one of my favorite posts I write all year. I love recapping our year and looking back on all that has happened in 12 seemingly short months.

And THIS year's post is extra exciting because we have BIG NEWS to share!!!

We can hardly believe it ourselves. All we can say is God is pretty amazing and full of surprises. If you've followed our journey to parenthood, you know that there was a season in our marriage where we felt like having biological kids may not be the story God was planning for our future family. We were overjoyed when we became pregnant with Ryan and then completely shocked when we became pregnant with Natalie without any help from doctors. So to find our we were pregnant AGAIN so soon after our first two?! Well, let's just say we're pretty darn excited to embrace the crazy that will be having 3 kids so close in age.

Ryan will be turn 3 about a month after this baby is born, and Little Miss Natalie will be 16 months old. Ryan and Natalie are 18 months apart and we've enjoyed having them close together in age, so here's goes to trying it out with the next two even closer in age! 

We will find out gender at our 20 week appointment (I am 15 weeks today) and will get to all of the fun nursery and name planning then!

As Matt said when I told him I was pregnant (after, "Are you serious?! That's AWESOME!"), "...we are head-down in this stage of parenting right now and we know how to do babies- as in, we still have one, not at all that we're perfect at it, hah!- We haven't even come up for air (insert laughing emoji here, and maybe a coffee one too), so why no stay in the zone?! 

So in-the-zone we will stay and ever-so-grateful we will be!

Our 2016 "Best Nine"
(Taken from Instagram- follow us here)

Here's a recap of the rest of our 2016!

In 2016, We...

Shared updates on our kiddos:



Shared thoughts on:

Had adventures to:

What a year! Thank you to those of you who take the time to read what I write each week! I appreciate you taking an interest in our family and making me feel like this space is a little more than just an online journal for us to look back on one day.

We wish you a Happy New Year and a BLESSED 2017!

For recaps from previous years, see the links below:


Thursday, December 29, 2016

12 Days of Christmas Recap

What a fun December it has been! Here's a recap of this year's 12 Days of Christmas activities:

Pick out & decorate our tree + Ryan's tree for his room

Matt and I cracked up about this- we waited so much longer than we usually do to decorate the tree so that Ryan could help with the ornaments. So one night, Matt got home early, we got Ryan excited about getting to finally decorate the tree, and after sticking the first ornament on, Ryan said, "You can do the rest, Daddy." I busted out laughing. Sometimes, you give all the build up and planning for something that's just not as cool to your kids as you think it's going to be.

He did a great job with the little tree in his room though! I'd say he put on at least four ornaments before he got tired. ;)

Visit Santa

I love the way Ryan is looking at Natalie in that first one, and the way Natalie is curling up like she's about to snooze in the last one!

Ride the Pink Pig

This was such a fun experience! Both kiddos loved it! Might have to make this an annual tradition- at least for the next few years!

Visit Snow Mountain @ Stone Mountain Park
This was another great day! I'm so glad we got this in this year. Both kids loved the snow and loved getting to play with their cousins!

After all of the fun, we stopped by the little candy store in the park and then caught these two sharing their treats!

Botanical Gardens Night of Lights
2nd annual night of lights at the Botanical Gardens, and we managed to get a big group pic this time! It was fun to see Ryan running around and taking it all in this year. And next year, Natalie will be right there with him!

Matching PJ Playdate Party!
Each year, my girlfriends and their babies get together for a Christmas PJ party complete with breakfast, a craft, a Christmas movie, dancing to Christmas music, and coffee for the mamas. :) This year, we hosted the play date and had so much fun letting the kids run all over and play.

These couch pictures are getting full!

Reading our new books after the Christmas book exchange!

See Rudolf the Red-Nosed Reindeer at the Center for Puppetry Arts
I'll be honest, this outing was one hot mess. We went with my friend Stephanie and sister-in-law Karen and her kiddos, and there's really just not a better way to describe the morning. Ryan was actually really cute, standing up and super into the play, laughing (really loudly) about anything remotely funny, but Nonni Girl was allll over the place, trying to crawl out of my lap and dive to the floor below... and Steph had to leave about half way through for her youngest who was just having a tough go and the watching-a-play thing. The only picture I got was one of my (creamy white) pants as we were leaving that showed the amount of crusted food that was smashed into them as I tried to occupy Natalie so Ryan could enjoy the whole play. So maybe next year on this one?!  ...A hilarious memory and A-for-effort moment for sure.

Christmas Crafts
We made a gingerbread house again this year! And Ryan made a cute little snowman ornament for the tree during our PJ playdate, and (believe it or not) I made a handprint ornament for Nonni Girl this year. 3 craft-like activities is really something for this mama. ;) We also went over to Aunt KK's house and made Christmas cookies with Jackson and Riley! Such a fun little morning with them!

Natalie cracked me up in this picture!! Girl know how to make the most of an opportunity.

Make Cookies for Santa

I had two little helpers for cookie making this year! Recipe here.

Have a Christmas music dance party

This might be one of my favorite pictures from the past month. This little buddy of ours loves to be naked- so he decided to have a naked dance party. In this picture he was doing a big "stop" to freeze to the music. Love his funny self so!

Watch Christmas Movies with Popcorn and Candy Canes
We got into popcorn and movie nights this year! We would put Natalie down for the night and then curl up in our bed to watch before Ryan went to bed. These nights were fun little memories from this Christmas Season.

Ryan also really got into The Sound of Music again this year. I love this little picture of him sitting in the middle of the living room watching part of the movie one night while Matt and I cleaned up dinner. 

Make a Birthday Cake for Jesus
I hope he always likes to cook and bake with me! We brought our cake over to my sister's house for our Christmas dinner and all sang Happy Birthday to Jesus before eating. I want to keep this tradition going each year. It's a fun and sweet reminder of Who this season is really all about!

That's it for our December fun! On the 31st, I'll be sharing a recap of our 2016- this year has been a FULL one!