I started this year off with some of my favorite people and a lot of really good food. Actually, after going through all of the month’s pictures, I realized that MOST of my memories involved food. I’m here for it. We ended 2019 by playing games in our back-porch-turned-room and started 2020 in the same room with a delicious brunch.
All hands on deck as we made the most delicious blueberry and cream french toast, Wayne’s traditional meat and potatoes breakfast hash and veggie-filled scrambled eggs. Then we all separated throughout the house and had some much needed quiet time seeking the Lord on our own. I really loved having so much quality time with our people!
My friend, Kim, works as the owner and lead wedding videographer at Heart Happy Films. Last year, while I was on maternity leave, I was reminded of how quickly these littles grow. Things like the Carney Monthbooks or having the app Timehop help me remember and delight in the smallest memories. I was talking to Kim about how I want to remember the everyday “mundane” because it will look so differently a year from now. I want to remember the routines, the sounds, the chores, the giggles and even the look of the house from the season we’re in now. This time last year, we were a family of three, so everyday life looked and sounded so different. From there, the idea of capturing a family capsule video came. I hired Kim to do just that. Nothing fancy, nothing curated. It was just us in our environment doing the things we usually do on a day off.
Below are some behind the scenes, where you can see Kim teaching E how to shoot video. On the right, you can see E at his favorite place, the ice cream shop in our neighborhood, and her camera peeping.
Soon after that visit from Kim, Wayne began his second PT internship. The drive is long and the workday is long, but he has grown in his love and compassion for the patients.
Another highlight was a visit from my longtime friend Lauranne. She was in my Jan monthbook a year ago! This time last year she was preparing to move to India for a year. Here she was visiting from India, as she is extending her visa! I got to hear all about her life and even Facetime chat with the man she has fallen in love with over there. Also, we made the greatest avocado toast.
We continued the tradition of our monthly MC ladies night. Every month a new girl is in charge and leads the night by choosing what we do. This month’s MC ladies night was a painting party! We followed a Youtube tutorial, listened to jazz music, ate appetizers and laughed at our painting skills. I love that we do something different each time and we leave excited to be together again.
We were guests at a wedding this month! While I very much LOVE shooting weddings for friends, I also very much enjoyed this!! I just realized that this was the first time we were both out of town without the kids. We ended up running into 8 other guests that we knew! There were tears, wine, ALL OF THE DANCING and more tears.
The photo below is a snap of what our life looks like sometimes. Bedtimes are rough. Here is Wayne with our two children while I leave for a work meeting. He is handling an assignment while holding our baby and about to prep our toddler for bedtime. There are times where we both have to step into this role alone with both children bc … you do what you have to do. Our schedules can sometimes be crazy, so the other one steps up. This picture was taken because it is: 1. reality of some nights 2. a reminder to be aware of the narrative I tell myself. When I’m tempted to keep score with Wayne on who does what more, this picture is my reminder that scores have no place in a marriage. Something I re-learned this month was to protect my thoughts and the narrative I tell myself, because the repetition of things that are misconstrued or untrue can eventually become your truth. I re-learned that the Holy Spirit needs room to renew my thoughts because marriage is not about keeping score. I daily get to step into the honor of choosing to love someone and serve them… and he gets to do the same for me.
Pasta dinner on Ashley’s living room floor before our weekly media meetings. It was followed by quality (and tearful) life conversations that led into the middle of the night.
Spent the afternoon at the park with some friends. It was before Florida got confused and forgot we were a tropical state. (I hate cold weather) The weather was perfect this day! We tossed the frisbee, played spike ball and ate all of the snacks.
Here are some of my favorite moments with Ethan:
- Walking into his room to wake him up for daycare and finding him quietly reading to himself in bed.
- At kids church, they asked the kids to pray and ask the Holy Spirit to lead them into drawing something. Ethan drew this and explained that the purple was our house and the brown was the Holy Spirit around the house. I’ll take that as a word from the Lord.
- Playing the LONGEST game of Candy Land. Ethan got to the very end THREE TIMESSSSSSSSSS and each time, his next card drawn was a candy leading him all the way back to the beginning. It was the most frustrating and hilarious thing all at once. I ended up winning and he began to cry, so we walked in to a new conversation. Wayne and I talked him through his feelings and explained that while we can be disappointed we didn’t win, we should celebrate the other person.
- Ethan’s first day at his new daycare. They speak Spanish to the children!
Healthy breakfast and quiet time seeking the Lord together before work. Then all of the MP stuff.
Alex, the kids and I traveled back to South Florida for a shoot. It takes 4 hours to travel from my house in Gainesville to my parent’s house in West Palm Beach. With children, it takes 5 hours on a good drive, but 6 hours usually. Thankfully, we planned for 6 hours as we had to get food + gas (stop 1) and nursing (stop 2). What I’ve learned from traveling with a baby and a toddler is:
- It’s nice to drive with another adult so I can turn the car into my mobile office during a long drive. Thank you SO much, Alex!
- A couple of snacks + lunch + drinks go a long way. It helps with not spending money on bad food while on the road.
- Bring activities to entertain a toddler. We bought this LCD drawing tablet for Ethan and he LOVES it in the car.
- Pack extra diapers, wipes, and clothes in case of possible diaper blowouts for baby.
- Bottle of milk just in case you don’t nurse or don’t have time to stop to nurse.
- Rain sounds to help a baby fall asleep in the car.
- Elvie pump is the BEST pump I have ever had for pumping in the car. No mess, no cords, no problems.
We were only in West Palm Beach for less than 24 hours. In that short amount of time, I photographed an engagement party, got a delicious Hello Fresh recipe and got to see all of my aunts and uncles from my mom’s side! I’m close to all of them and see all but one often (the one lives in Texas). They haven’t ALL been in the same place for years, so it was really wonderful to watch my mom and her siblings reminiscing and laughing all night. It made me think of how my sister and brother will be when we are older.
I have started an album dedicated to the different looks of Selah’s hair. That bedhead is real:
… and an album of #selfieswithSelah. Sooooo many selfies with her this month!
Got to briefly see these two friends before they left town! We had breakfast at Mi Apa and caught up on all of the things.
Ashley and I finally got to celebrate her MP anniversary! We made home-cooked (and DANG GOOD) ramen. We were SO proud of ourselves. I couldn’t stop staring at the picture below. JUST LOOK AT IT. It tasted better than it looked. The night ended in catching up on the Bachelor together.
January ended with a date night! Wayne had a gift card to Cheesecake Factory, so off we went… with Selah! We never take any of the kids to our date nights, but homegirl was wide awake so she tagged along. It really was such a sweet night though. I LOVE HAVING “ALONE” TIME WITH WAYNE. We are so tired after work that we often give each other our “leftovers” once we are together on regular weeknights. It was so good to just be together, eat the yummy food and talk all things non-house/baby related.
While it felt long, it was a GOOD month full of little reminders. Excited for what the Lord reveals next month!