Tuesday, January 28, 2020

Wells First Birthday Party

We had a really full weekend. Wells turned one on Thursday, Scott and I celebrated our 11th wedding anniversary on Friday, then we had Wells birthday party on Saturday. A lot of celebrating packed into a weekend!! Scott and I had a nice dinner on Friday night but our main focus of the weekend was celebrating our sweet baby boy!! We thought it would be fun to play off his name somehow. Scott was full of ideas....whales, wishing well...but we ended up landing on Wales, as in the British monarchy, and ended up throwing maybe my favorite party theme ever for our Prince of Wells!
His outfit was perfect all the way down to his sweet embroidered double decker bus socks, all from Little English. I had a custom crochet crown made for my little prince and I wanted to eat him he looked so sweet.
Apparently I don't know how to have a party anymore without making a balloon garland. Ha! I made one for the first time for Bennett's balloon themed birthday party last year and it was so easy and such a fun touch that it's hard to not do one now. I've become quite the balloon garland girl these days and Scott has nicknamed me "balloon lady" because I've ended up doing several balloon garlands for Campbell's school. I learn a little more each time I make one and get better and faster too. This one has been my favorite one I've made to date. It's still hard figuring out how to hang them but thankfully Scott always manages it for me and I think he's learning a few good tricks for that part. They're such a cheap decoration and truly are easy to make. This one took me about 2 hours start to finish and probably cost me around $15 total. I always get asked how I do it and I just blow up the balloons, tie several in bunches together (5-6) then thread one of the balloons in the bunch through a fishing wire. The biggest piece of advice I can give to have a good looking balloon garland is to blow your balloons up all different sizes. It's good to get a couple of jumbo balloons to have here and there and I love teeny tiny balloons too. When your balloons are all the same size it doesn't look as good and that's the mistake I see people making the most so do different sizes!
I absolutely adored Wells cake, complete with the queen holding a corgi no less. When we brought it home, Bennett made me smile so big when he was admiring the cake and said "I love the fairy godmother!"
Someone local made the adorable cookies for me and they tasted just as good as they looked! We served fish and chips for dinner then let Wells dig into his cake after!
We got super tickled because after a bit of hand-grabbing the cake, Wells decided to go all in and just stick his face in the entire thing. He ate it like that the rest of the time and had a good time doing it too!!
I was too busy during the party and didn't get nearly as many photos as I wanted to and I was kicking myself for that after but oh well! I did get this sweet picture of my three boys together and something about it makes my heart smile so big. I love these three boys so much and the two bigger ones adore that baby in the middle!
We had such a sweet time celebrating our sweet baby boy!

Thursday, January 23, 2020

Wells | Twelve Months Old

One Year Old! My last time to do one of these. I've done them for all of my babies. I took these photos of Wells yesterday and I'm impressed I even got one! The second I laid him down and got my camera out, he was off to the shutters to close them! LOL. I've enjoyed doing these monthly updates of all of my babies during their first year. They're fun to look back on and help me remember so much more than if I wouldn't have done them. For the last time, here is my sweet Wellsy's monthly update!
Weight: 19 lbs

Height: 27 inches

Sleep: 7:00-7:00 + two naps a day at 9:00 and 2:00 for about 1.5-2 hours. Just like his brothers, Wells has been an amazing and perfect little sleeper! He sleeps when he's supposed to sleep and looks super cute doing it too. On his tummy, booty in the air, feet tucked under him, thumb in mouth. Wells loves his sleep!!
Eat: I am still exclusively breastfeeding Wells. He nurses 3 times a day and gets two bottles a day. I started giving him one bottle before bed every night around 6 months of age. I haven't pumped since the beginning of May but I still have enough milk to last until the end of March (two bottles a day). This was my goal all along, to have enough milk to get us until the end of March. From day one, I committed to pumping three times a day for at least three months. I saved over 2,000 ounces of milk and donated over 300. It may have seemed silly, given that I'm a stay at home mom and exclusively nurse. However, I'm SO glad I had the determination and discipline to do it! Wells loves his bottles almost as much as nursing and I know he'll be sad the day it's all gone. I'm planning to continue nursing and giving him bottles through March. Once I run out of my freezer supply, I'll begin the weaning process. Besides all of this milk Wells has gotten his first year, he also loves to eat food! His favorites are chicken, applesauce, fruits, muffins, peanut butter sandwiches, goldfish and cheerios.

Clothes: Size 6-12M Gap and Boden. Size 9 month in boutique brands. Size 3 oxfords and size 2 Freshly Picked Shoes. Size 6-12M Kickee's and 12-18M TBBC pajamas.
Diapers: Size 3 Honest

Likes: The Mickey Mouse Mix-Up and Hot Dog songs. Banging on his piano, playing with the train table. Eating. Exploring every inch of the house. Swinging. Being held.

Dislikes: Getting his nose wiped. Waiting for his bottle to warm up.
Milestones: Wells sits up on his knees and sometimes puts a foot under him like he wants to pull up and stand. He can stand with support but he's too busy to crawl to want to stand still for long. He got four teeth on the top this month bringing his total number to seven! More than double what either of his brothers had on their first birthday.

Month Twelve: Speed. That's the word of the month. Wells is speedy and can get somewhere lightening fast. I cannot keep up with this busy boy anymore! He is literally here one second and gone the next. He is into everything and explores with such curiosity. This month Wells got to go to Disney World for the first time!!! He truly enjoyed the magic and has proven to be such a trooper of a traveler this year!!
All About Wells: Oh Wellsy, you are the greatest joy! I have tears in my eyes typing this because I cannot believe you are ONE. This year has been full of sweet memories because of you. You are the sweetest baby--we get told how sweet you are all the time. You are super chill but you make it known when you need to be held--which is often! If you hear a Mickey song on TV you stop what you're doing and crawl to see it. It isn't hard to get a smile or a giggle out of you. You have the tiniest little roll on your upper thigh and it's so scrumptious. You are the busiest little boy in our house and I cannot keep up with you anymore!! You cannot even imagine how quickly this year went by for me. I adore every single ounce of you and appreciate every bit of sweetness that comes with you. You light up our family and completed us so perfectly. Happy Birthday Wells Andrew! We cannot wait to celebrate you for the rest of the week!

Wells Andrew Is One

Somehow my baby turned a whole year old today. In perspective one is still such a tiny number but looking back on this year I can't believe how quickly it went by. It's such a cliché mom thing to say but it has truly been the fastest year of my life. Which is interesting since it's also been the busiest! I guess that's why it went by so fast.
It's a sweet, sweet treasure--that third baby. Or maybe it's when you know it's your last baby. Perhaps a combination of the two. At times I have been able to step outside the chaos of the overwhelming duty that comes with being Wells mother and I've looked at him so differently than I did my other two. I assume it must be how a grandparent feels--truly just enjoying the children. Not that a parent doesn't, of course, but I think sometimes as a parent you're just trying to make it to the end of the day that you forget to stop and enjoy even the smallest of moments. I also feel like when you're a parent you're quick to diagnose your child as being so big. With each milestone they take in life, you suddenly see them as being older and more capable. They're crawling, they're so big! They can feed themselves, they're so big! When in reality, they aren't so big. They're so, so tiny. With this third baby, I truly was able to step back from the stress and chaos and simply enjoy him and soak up every moment of him being a tiny little baby. I've done this before and I know how quickly it goes by so I wasn't about to let time steal all of the precious moments away from me. I sat still and let it all in.
I know without a doubt I can look back on Wells first year of life and say I absolutely soaked up every moment. My patience during the sleepless newborn nights was nearly poetic. The mom who loves sleep was just fine without getting any. Those middle of the night feedings were my only quiet, alone times with my baby and I actually found myself enjoying that sweet, fleeting time. Each milestone, no matter how big or small, gave me pause. I wanted to truly relish in the moment because I knew it was my last time to experience it.
I feel like a really old mom sometimes. Not necessarily just in age (although I am almost 35 which does kind of seem old for this stage of life sometimes!) but in wisdom. I'm not saying I have all of the answers when it comes to motherhood because I don't. But I sure do have the confidence in knowing what I'm doing this time around. It's so refreshing to mother with such confidence. I don't have that confidence when it comes to my oldest child. He continues to be my learning curve and bless his heart, that will always be the case. But with my baby--I've got this. And that's a good feeling.
This sweet little chapter of my life where I have tiny babies has come to an end. Granted, Wells is still a baby--but you know what I mean. It's a little sad truthfully. I absolutely love babies. I love newborns and wish I could relive that high you have from those first few weeks with your newborn over and over and over. It's a euphoric state that I seem to get myself into that I've never experienced any other time in my life. Those first few weeks where all you want to do is stare at your new baby...it's indescribable.
Wells has been such a precious little soul and brings our entire family so much joy. We all think he's just about the most adorable thing there ever was. His brothers are obsessed with him and his mom and dad are too. His first year has been so sweet and I get emotional that it has come and gone so quickly. However, I am so excited to see the little boy he grows into. I never wish for time to stand still and I never ask my kids to stop growing up. I love watching them grow. It has been my greatest joy in life. Now I have an entire year to look back on with such fond memories. It was exhausting and I absolutely felt as if I was pulled in every single direction. I couldn't manage any more than I have now, even if I wanted to. Three is the limit and all I'm capable of! But three was always my dream, for as long as I can remember. Wells made that dream come true in the sweetest, most surprising way and I feel like the luckiest girl in the world that he (and his brothers!) are all mine. Happy Birthday Wellsy! You are the perfect grand finale and I love you more than words could ever express!

Wednesday, January 22, 2020

Wells One Year Portraits

Somehow the year flew by at lightening speed and tomorrow my baby boy wakes up a one year old. I held him a little longer tonight and kissed him a few extra times. I can remember this day a year ago like it was yesterday. I took the boys to the dentist and then to Chuck - E - Cheese later that night. I knew it was our last outing as a family of four. I had been having contractions for nearly 48 hours and I was pretty certain I was in the early stages of labor. Looking back, it was SO OBVIOUS that I was in labor. I can remember exactly how sore my abdomen felt from the literally non stop, all day long contractions. They weren't getting closer together, just consistently the same, but so strong and really exhausting. I knew. I knew he was going to be coming the next day. And when it was confirmed that he was, indeed coming, it somehow still took me by surprise.
A year later and I watched my baby in awe today and soaked him up a little extra. Knowing that a year ago he wasn't here but I was so anxious to meet him, hold him and see what he would look like gave me pause to reflect. Now here he is, all over the place, exploring, babbling, smiling at me, asking me to hold him....so much changes in just a single year. And he's just as precious as I knew he would be.

Tuesday, January 21, 2020

Birds

I have been suuuper chill this month. I've needed it. I was so overwhelmingly busy the last couple of months of 2019 so a life break was in order. I have binged on Netflix which is something I literally NEVER, ever have time to do. I'm always so jealous of people who are talking about shows they're watching because it seems like I never have time in my day to watch shows. Ever. But this magical thing happens every January and February where my life slows down and right now I am bored and it's fantastic. I have binged on Cheer and last night Scott and I started watching The Morning Show. It's great! I have stayed far away from my camera because I just needed a break from it. I haven't even edited the photos I took while I was at Disney. But today I thought to myself "hmm, I wonder what those photos look like" so I uploaded them and played around. I honestly didn't take very many photos with my real camera even though I lugged that heavy thing in my backpack every single day. These photos were so unique and different (aka not of my kids!) so I thought I'd share!
I got these shots when we were at Animal Kingdom. I love Animal Kingdom. It's so different than any of the other parks. It's full of trees and beautiful animals and you truly feel as if you're in a whole different world. I kept waiting on the flamingos to stick their necks up so I could get a better photo of them but they were sleeping (which is why their necks are on their backs) and not at all concerned about waking up for a photo session with me. There was one little straggler who strolled around. Right next to the flamingos is a show, for lack of a better word, called Winged Encounters. A large group of Macaws fly over you so low you can feel their wings brush your head. It's amazing! They land on a tree branch and stay just long enough for the crowd to snap some photos and hear a few facts about these magnificent birds before they all take off again. It reoccurs several times throughout the day and it's simply an incredible site to see! 
I wasn't able to capture as many photos as I wanted to because people were in my way and I didn't have enough time but I do love the few shots I got and hopefully next time we go I can spend a little more time taking photos of these exquisite animals!

Thursday, January 16, 2020

Crayon Organization

My boys are really into coloring and I love it. However, I have found it really hard to organize all of their coloring supplies. There are countless coloring books, color pencils and crayons in our house. I have searched Pinterest and Google for organization ideas but everything that popped up left me "meh." It didn't feel realistic (like seriously, I'm not going to use empty toilet paper rolls to organize the crayon colors) or practical. The strewn coloring books and colors all across our play table was setting my OCD off but no matter how many trips to Target I took or how many aisles I walked up and down, I couldn't find anything that seemed to make sense. Throwing them all in a cute bucket or bowl didn't feel as if I was actually organizing them. There just had to be something out there. So I went to Target on a mission. I was determined to leave the store with something that was going to organize all of these coloring supplies. It occurred to me while I was walking up and down every aisle, that throughout my dozens of trips in the search of the perfect crayon organizer, one section I hadn't been down was the bath section. They have a lot of great organization products and as soon as I walked over there, I spotted the perfect thing.

This is a plastic spinning turntable organizer. Meant for make-up but perfectly suited for crayons. It has sections, it's clear, it spins and it's plastic. What more could a mom ask for in a crayon organizer? I snatched the last one up and walked out of Target finally feeling accomplished and satisfied. Do my kids love it? 100%. Does it keep my crayons beautifully organized? You bet. It fits well over 100 crayons and the taller section in the middle is the perfect spot for all of our pencils. Crayola needs to buy the rights to this thing because this is crayon organization perfection. I'm going to link it for you because you need this in your life. The one I'm using is the smaller version. There is a larger one as well. Too big for crayons in my opinion unless you had A LOT of crayons. However, if you need more space for say, markers, it would probably be perfect for that. We don't do markers so I wouldn't know. Markers, we have learned, are dangerous.
I didn't find a great coloring book organizer. Just a bin in the dollar section of Target. It isn't perfect but it's better than what it was and it keeps all of our coloring books pretty well organized. I'm happy with it.