It's really sinking in that we are moving in a week. At the same time, it's so surreal to be taking things off of walls, pulling down curtains, packing boxes and boxes of clothes, and patching and touch-up-painting walls.
I am so thankful that the Army is moving 95% of our stuff. I'm grateful that after 8 years of service to them, they will pay to pack, ship, and then unpack all of our belongings at our new place.
We are loading our car with essentials for our road trip across the country. (Which I'm SO excited about, by the way). And we are also packing up some kitchen and bath essentials because we will be in our new place for a couple of weeks before our stuff arrives.
I am so excited to get back to California and back to friends and family, but I am already getting a little sad about leaving our first house. It's the house where we learned how to take down wallpaper, tile floors, patch holes in walls, and paint every possible wall, door and board. It's also the house where we learned how to soothe a crying baby, change diapers in the middle of the night, function on little sleep, and watch our firstborn grow into an amazing toddler who is so excited to have a baby sister.
But while I look back with such fond memories, I look forward to everything these next few months will bring. A new house to make memories in, a new civilian job for Ryan, a new baby girl to hold and snuggle, and being close to family and friends who get to enjoy it all with us. Bring it on!
Last Saturday we went to our final class at the Little Gym. If you remember, I was sad because we had gone to a makeup class the previous Wednesday with a different teacher, and I had forgotten to take my camera. So, we ended up doing another makeup class for one that we missed a few weeks ago, on Saturday with Miss Miranda, Jax's regular teacher. Ok, enough confusing run-on sentences. Why don't I just show you the pictures, since I remembered to bring my camera this time! Since you guys have seen similar pictures already, I decided to just make a little collage with some of the cutest ones!
This week was a very fun week in pregnancy news! In case you missed it (here), we are having a baby girl!!
A little background about Lexi Nicole's name.... there isn't any. Ha! We had a girl name picked out during Jax's pregnancy, which we thought we would save for whenever we had a girl. Once I got pregnant this time, I started second guessing it and found another name that I loved. Ryan liked it but wasn't convinced. Then just a few weeks ago we found another name that we both liked, and I thought we had settled on. Then my dear husband decided he wasn't convinced about that one either. He's picky about names.. ugh! Last night, after we found out she was a girl and we would FOR SURE be needing to choose a girl name, I suggested Lexi. He loved it! I still loved the name we chose a few weeks ago, so we gave Jax the final decision. I asked him a few different times throughout yesterday evening and this morning which name he liked, and he said Lexi each time. So Lexi it is! And Nicole is my middle name, so we knew that would be her middle name from the beginning.
Our ultrasound was great yesterday. I always love getting ultrasounds... what mom doesn't?! We got tons of pictures to put in her pregnancy journal, which I love to look back on as she gets bigger. She is measuring right on track and is 6 ounces, or half a pound! This coming week she is getting her waxy coating (vernix) that protects her skin from the amniotic fluid until she is born. All the cartilage in her body is forming into bone, and she is starting to store fat and gain some weight. Which means that I am too. Eek!
Side note: I swear that while I'm pregnant, my body saves every.single.calorie that enters my body. Not cool.
Here is my 17 week picture
I have definitely noticed my belly growing this week, which is kind of fun!
Here's the comparison with Jax
I think that I just look rounder this time around... and not just in my belly. Ha!
And just for fun, here is a little progression collage of my pregnancy so far
It's also a progression of the length of my hair... since I haven't had it cut since July. Oh, I cannot wait to get back to California!
The little stinker wouldn't open her legs though! She was moving and squirming like crazy, but her legs stayed mostly closed the whole time. We poked and prodded and shook her around, and after about 15 minutes of not seeing anything that looked like boy parts, we finally got a few decent shots of some definitive girl parts. And she also gave us a great profile shot!
We are SO excited for Lexi Nicole to make her appearance in July!
"For you created my inmost being; you knit me together in my mother's womb. I praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made. Your works are wonderful, I know that full well. My frame was not hidden from you when I was made in the secret place. When I was woven together in the depths of the Earth, your eyes saw my unformed body. All the days ordained for me were written in your book before one of them came to be"
I thought this picture of my boys was so sweet. They were just snuggling, watching a movie, and I couldn't help but snap a photo. Love them.
We picked up a few things at Joann's the other day and we found this little hat in the dollar section. Perfect photo opp, obviously
Jax always loves to put my headbands on. The other day he decided to put on all the ones he could find at one time.
"Mommy, I'm gonna hug my toy, can you take a picture of me?"
Pretend sleeping in our bed... Notice the sneaky smile
I did a prenatal exercise video this morning and was resting on the couch afterward. Jax came up and started hugging and kissing the baby... SO sweet!!
On another random note, I am SO sad that Picnik is closing! I just recently posted about how I had rediscovered it as a way to do my comparison pictures with my pregnancies. Boo! Anyone know of something similar??
And finally... we have our gender ultrasound this morning!!! Stay tuned for the big reveal!
I started attending Mommies Group at my church while I was pregnant with Jax. That was three years ago. In those three years I have made many wonderful friends.
Some of my closest friendships have been formed during those two hours every Tuesday morning. Those ladies have been there through my lowest lows and my highest highs. They have seen me laugh and cry and babble on and on about life and motherhood and marriage.
There are not many things that I will miss about Fayetteville once we are gone, but my wonderful Mommies Group friends definitely top the short list.
Each week we gather in the far-too-small infant nursery at our church and sit and talk and learn about God, while our children play and run around us. It's usually a bit chaotic, but it creates memories that none of us will soon forget. Yesterday was my last day to see most of these ladies. It was sad and wonderful all at the same time. But I do know that I will look back on this time in my life with nothing but smiles and happy tears!
I helped out a friend this morning and watched her two kiddos while she went to the dentist. Jax and Adam love each other and always have tons of fun playing together. Jordan just likes to tag along to whatever they are doing.
I had been meaning to save an egg carton to make caterpillars, and I finally remembered to do it last week. I decided it would be a perfect craft to make with the boys this morning. I got out some stickers, markers, and pipe cleaners. They boys decorated their caterpillars then we added antennae, legs, and a face to each one.
While they were decorating, I read them The Very Hungry Caterpillar. They had lots of fun decorating their caterpillars and comparing them to the one from the book. It's hard to keep 2-year-olds occupied with crafts, but this was a good one. They were both very proud of how they turned out!
If I change the publish time, does that mean that this post actually got up before 1 pm? Since I'm already a day late, I would have liked to get it up this morning, but it just didn't happen. Mostly for the fact that I didn't have anyone (i.e. my husband) to take my picture until just now. I could get the tripod out, but that's a whole lot of work to take one picture, and I'm quasi lazy when it comes to things like that.
This week has been a little weird since we are down to one car. There has been a lot more time at home for Jax and I, and a lot more juggling of schedules to work it all out. Starting next week, Ryan won't have to report for duty every morning, so that should help alleviate some of the juggling. We have so many appointments and things scheduled in these last 20 days (what?!) until we leave. One of those appointments is our gender ultrasound on Wednesday! WOOHOO! Don't forget to vote in the gender poll on the top left of the blog... only a few days left!
The baby is heading into a big growth spurt these next few weeks. He/She will double in weight and add a few inches in length. As of now, he/she is approximately 5 inches and weighs 4.5 ounces. His/her legs are much more developed, so the kicking should become more apparent and frequent (Yay!). I seriously feel like my belly hasn't grown in a few weeks. I'm sure I'm just being paranoid, but I'm just in a weird place. I can't wait to hear and see the baby on Wednesday!
I'm not doing a comparison this week because I hate my 16 week picture with Jax. Ha! I look like a hot mess, so no one needs to see that. But, I would never leave you without a "16 week" picture of my sweet boy!
Last night we took Jax to a make-up class at The Little Gym. Since Ryan and I are sharing a car now, I knew we wouldn't be able to make it to his normal class this morning. We arrived there for the 630 class and there were approximately 4 million people there (give or take a few...).
Apparently, this class is way more crowded than his normal class, AND it's a combo class with his age group and the age group just below him. So he was far too advanced for the class. AND on top of all that, I forgot it was showcase week, which means I didn't bring my camera.
Thank goodness for iPhones, but they sure don't take great pictures of moving toddlers. We still got a few decent ones, even though they aren't as clear as I wish they were.
Jax still had a blast and was very proud of his ribbon that he received at the end of class. I was sad that his regular teacher, Miss Miranda, wasn't the one to give it to him.
I thought we would be there for his normal class this week, so we haven't gotten to say goodbye to her. Last night I promised Jax that we will get to the gym one last time to say goodbye before we leave. We are really going to miss our Thursday morning fun!
16 week post is coming later this afternoon or tomorrow morning. I just have to take my belly picture... and Jax's, of course!
3 years ago, almost to the day, I postedthis blog about my love for Baskin Robbins' annual Valentine's Day ice cream, Love Potion #31. Each year I look forward to the middle of January because it means that I can make my way to B&R and score some of this yumminess.
White chocolate and raspberry ice cream, swirled with a raspberry ribbon, with dark chocolate pieces, and dark chocolate hearts filled with raspberry. I know, right?! It sounds much richer than it is. And the funny thing is, I don't even really like fruit and chocolate mixed together, but this stuff just so. dang. good!
I attribute my large weight gain while I was pregnant with Jax to this ice cream. And wouldn't ya know, I'm pregnant during Valentine's Day again, 3 years later. I am trying very hard to pace myself, but it is calling to me from my freezer. Oh yeah, did I mention that we bought a quart and brought it home? No? Well, we did. Yeah, I'm addicted. I'm actually quite thankful that it only comes around once a year because if it were available all the time, I'm certain I would weigh far more, pregnant or not!
We sold Ryan's car yesterday morning! So now we are a one-car family. The plan is to buy Ryan a car in California, but it probably won't be right away. However, I don't want to be stuck at home all the time, so it will definitely be as soon as possible!
We spent the afternoon and evening hanging out, watching football, and grilling some burgers. A friend of Ryan's came over and brought elk burgers. I've never had elk before but it was pretty good. A little more game-y than I would prefer, but not bad. He also brought appetizers... Small pieces of duck breast with a slice of jalapeño wrapped in bacon. I'd never had duck before either (that I can remember), but they were so good! And I failed to get any pictures. Boo me!
I do, however, have some other pictures for you guys.
Here is my little belly from my angle... I already can't see my toes. What?!
We went to the kids museum on Wednesday and Jax was having fun playing with the construction stuff. He kept putting the goggles right on top of his eyes.
We took him to Beauty and the Beast a few nights ago and he sat through the whole thing! He had such a blast eating popcorn and M&Ms, and wearing the cool 3d glasses.
He has always been a snuggler!
Ryan has wanted to learn guitar for years so he finally bought one. Jax is pretty enthralled by it!
I have a cute video of Jax singing that isn't uploading for some reason, but I will try to get that up as soon as possible. It's pretty darn cute!
I'm linking up with Kelly today for her Show Us Your Life series. Today's topic is Military Families, and I figured that it was a good time to finally link up with her.
Here is our story-
My husband and I have known each other our whole lives. Our parents went to college together and we grew up hanging out with each other. His sister is my age, so he was always the annoying older brother! Fast forward some years, he joined the Army in 2004, then deployed to Iraq in August 2006. His mom emailed me and said that I should get in touch with him so that we could be pen pals while he was overseas. Well, one thing led to another and soon we fell in love... across the world from each other! He came home for leave at Christmas and we got engaged, then he headed back to Iraq until October. We got married 2 months later on New Year's Eve.
Our wedding day
As for our military life, we have been at Fort Bragg in North Carolina for the last 4.5 years. His job has allowed us to stay in one place, which has been such a blessing!. We've been through a few short deployments to Haiti and Thailand, and another long one to Afghanistan.
Afghanistan deployment day
For those who already read my blog, you know that we are getting out of the Army in a few weeks. However, these last 5 years of military life have changed me, in the best possible way. The sisterhood of military wives, learning how to be a single mom when duty calls, turning friends into family, figuring out how to be strong when you have nothing left. These are just a few of the things that I take with me as we step out into the civilian world.