Monday, November 13, 2017

Squish is Five Months Old!

Happy 5 months, Squishy!

I love this boy SO MUCH!!!!! And let's just take a moment to let it all sink in... Why, yes! I DID manage to take his pictures ON his ACTUAL month-birthday. Why, yes! I DID manage to edit his pictures on his actual month-birthday! And, yes! I did manage to write and upload a blog post ON HIS ACTUAL MONTH-BIRTHDAY. Can I puh-leaze get some props and high-fives over here?!

Last month on his 4-month post I wrote, "Okay, so I officially promise that I'm going to try reeeeeaaaaally hard to take his 5 month pictures ON or very much NEAR his 5 month birthday. We shall see!" Yay! I did it! I did it!! :)

And really, just in case you were ever wondering who is UNIVERSALLY HANDSOME, it's this guy!

I just can't get enough of those smiles!

Loving the many, many faces of sweet Squishy!

Haha! Mr. Grump McGrumperson!

And of course I cannot forget today's photography helper... thanks, E!!

He loves his tummy time! I'm so glad he's not feeling inclined to do much rolling over yet, though. :)

Check out this sweet boy of mine!

And I absolutely cannot forget these sweet tootsies! Love love love these sweet feet!

Baby feet for the win!

Squish is just the best. He had a great weekend at home with Daddy and his siblings while Mommy was gone for a ladies retreat in Myrtle Beach. He was happy to see me when I got home last night, so that made my heart so happy! I missed him (and the others) so much!

He's still just such a happy and laid-back baby... it's wonderful! Unless he's hungry or super tired, he just relaxes and enjoys being his happy self. As I mentioned above, he's not rolling over yet, which is so totally fine by me! He's discovered his feet, though, and loves having them up in his face. I mean, they're so cute so why wouldn't you want a close-up of them? LOL!

Monday, October 30, 2017

Squish is Four Months Old!

Happy 4 months, Squishy-face!

Okay, so technically 4 1/2 months. Sheesh.

I just can't get enough of this handsome little fella! He continues to be the most laid-back, easy-going sweet baby of all time. And... I'm ecstatic to report we are pretty much on a -- wait for it -- SCHEDULE! Yay! I mean, it's not an exact science or anything, but he's eating every 4ish hours, with some nice 6- to 9-hour stretches at night. Can I get an AMEN!?

I was able to get some great pics of my sweet guy today, but this little gem below was taken by LO! Isn't it great?

Last Thursday (Chase's birthday), I took Squish in for his 4-month checkup, and he's growing like a weed! He was up to 16 lbs. 8 oz. and 26.5" long! The one thing I simply cannot get enough of is this boy's THIGHS! I could eat 'em up! See??

I just love all of the interaction with this sweet boy. He's so happy and smiley! He's a lot of fun and the big kids are just smitten with him.

Our only struggle lately is that our sweet boy seems to be having some allergy issues we can't seem to pinpoint. He will start rubbing his eyes incessantly, causing the entire area around his eyes to turn pink and puffy (as evidenced in the pic below). Poor boy! I'm wondering if he has some of daddy's seasonal allergies... bless.

Okay, so I officially promise that I'm going to try reeeeeaaaaally hard to take his 5 month pictures ON or very much NEAR his 5 month birthday. We shall see!

Love my sweet squishy-squish!

Thursday, October 26, 2017

Chase's 8th Birthday!

My sweet, sweet miracle turned 8 today! We are celebrating God's goodness and faithfulness in our family. It's simply astonishing what God has done for us! We cannot thank him enough!

First of all, major props to LO for her creative homemade birthday banner, complete with Pokéballs!

We let Chase make all the plans and decisions for his big day. Of course we started with our family tradition of birthday pancakes! Oh, how I love this boy!

Make a wish!

After birthday pancakes, it was time to open presents! Yay! Not surprisingly, there were lots of LEGO, Ninjago, and Pokémon involved, much to the birthday boy's delight!

FINALLY! The Phantom Ninja! He's been waiting for this book forever!

His coveted birthday wish: The Green Ninja Mech Dragon!

One happy birthday boy!

Of course mommy is economical and bought the birthday boy some new t-shirts. This one? My absolute FAVE. I am always telling Chase that he is the bravest person I know. Without a doubt, this couldn't be more true! I snatched this shirt up the instant I saw it!

Another fun t-shirt purchase: "Be KIND. It's Elemental." We'll be working through the Periodic Table later this year in CC, so I couldn't pass this one up! Chase loves Ninjago, and each of the ninja have a special skill referred to as their "elemental power." Elemental powers are used by Elemental Masters in Ninjago, and include elements such as fire, ice, lightning, earth, water, etc. When I saw this shirt, I immediately thought of the ninja and decided maybe I could convince Chase that his elemental power is KINDNESS. Surely that would only serve to improve sibling interactions, yes? (LOL!)

There were a lot of new LEGO sets today. And bless this sweet guy's heart... he waited so patiently, watching big bro and big sis work intently on their creations.

The birthday boy is hard at work!

Big sis is basically a Master Builder. Look at her go!

After pancakes and gifts and hanging out, I took the four kiddos and headed to the doctor's office! I had already scheduled Squish's 4-month and Chase's 8 year well visits for today, but decided yesterday to call and ask if I could bring LO and E to have the older 3 get their flu shots today. You can imagine Chase's excitement at getting a shot on his birthday. AND a finger stick. It was a major win. Thank goodness we had a yummy cake and some ice cream waiting for us at home!

Speaking of cake and ice cream, someone was super excited (and super silly) while the cake was being prepped for singing and serving.

Cake! Chocolate (gluten-free) cake with homemade chocolate buttercream -- all per Chase's request (well, not the gluten-free part... that's just because I've adapted to being gluten-free and didn't want to miss out on birthday cake!).


Time to sing! Look at all of those candles!!!

Make a wish, my sweet boy!

I can't forget to share this sweet squishy face! Just love him and his super-chill vibe.

We topped off the birthday festivities with dinner at Culver's with all the family! It was so much fun and so awesome to hang out and catch up with our fam! More gifts were opened, plenty of frozen custard was consumed, and a wonderful time was had by all!

I am so so so so so happy and so very blessed and so incredibly thankful for all God has done in Chase's first 8 years! He has been through more than anyone I know, but has such an incredibly sensitive heart, and an unparalleled love for others. I can't believe I get to be his mom! God is so good!


Friday, September 22, 2017

Squish is Three Months Old!

Happy 3 Months, sweet Squishy!

Can you believe it? He's already 1/4 of the way to ONE! Waaaahhhhhhhh!!! In true mom2lo fashion, I am a good 9 days behind schedule in posting Squish's 3 month picture. Although, technically, this is an improvement from last month's 13 days behind schedule! Let's call that a win, shall we?

Now, if you were ever wondering what would happen if you were to task your children with styling their baby brother's 3-month photoshoot, this may very well be what you are likely to get:

Who cares that we're a month ahead of Halloween? He couldn't BE more adorable... even as the crime fighting caped crusader! Seriously, this was just too fun! And tbh, I welcomed the help! (This might be the single reason why I was "only" 9 days behind schedule this month! LOL!)

Our sweet Squish is getting much more alert and interactive these days. His giggle is literally the best, Jerry! The BEST!!

He did -- without our approval -- roll over from his belly to his back on September 8th. Thankfully, we haven't seen any more of this naughty behavior from our lil' fella!

We're enjoying the goodness that is our sweet babe. He's an excellent eater, as evidenced by A) his chins; B) his thighs; C) his elbows; and D) his 15 lbs. 5 oz. weight from last night! Sweet little piggy!

Life is adjusting well as we setting into our new routines. I wouldn't use the word "schedule" yet, unfortunately, as we don't really have one of those yet. I wish we did... I suppose I should look into making that happen. Let's see if I can happily mention the "s" word in his 4-month post next month! Fingers crossed!

Tuesday, August 29, 2017

First Day of CC!

Just a quick post to document that today was our first day at our Classical Conversations (CC) community! We started our homeschool at the beginning of August, but our co-op fun started today! I'm not sure why, but I was nervous about our morning. Lots of reasons, but I'm pretty sure one of them was because this morning was my first time leaving the house with all four kids by myself! Yes, if you're keeping track, Squishy is already 2 months old. What can I say? I have a super awesome hubby! But I wanted to take all of them for our first day, even though it would've been way easier to leave Squish at home with daddy. ;)

I'm excited about the year of CC we have ahead of us! It's going to be awesome! I know God has big plans for my family and I simply adore watching my kiddos soaking up God's Word and learning all about Him and the world He made. Homeschooling is the bomb!

Of course I have pics of the kiddos...

First up? My NEW-TO-CC little BABY boy, E! Can you believe he's already in a K4 program? Oh, my heart!!!

Next up is Chase, rocking out 2nd Grade!

This little beauty of mine is -- get this! -- in 5th Grade! What?!

She loved her twirly dress for our first day!

My sweet little loves!

We arrived at CC (a few minutes early!) this morning so I could take a picture at the church as I have done each year. Let me just add here: All of you AWESOME mamas who get your kids up, fed, dressed, and out the door to school with backpacks and lunches packed FIVE DAYS A WEEK are my heroes. I barely managed this morning. Just ONE morning. And with a VERY helpful hubby. I literally napped for two hours when we got home from co-op. Y'all are literally all kinds of amazing!

Here's their 2016 pic from last year (my apologies for the terrible lighting and lack of editing!):

And their first year at CC from 2015! Look how little!

I'm happy to report that we survived our day! I still feel a bit anxious about our CC year, but I think it's mostly due to the work I need to do with the kids at home this year (LO most specifically). But I trust God, and I know He brought us to this place and that He will equip me to be the very best teacher for my sweet kiddos. I pray for their hearts as well as their minds as we see where He leads us. Now, let's see how much sleep I can stockpile before our next early morning next Tuesday! :)

Saturday, August 26, 2017

Squish is Two Months Old!

My not-so-little Squishy is two months old! He's just the sweetest! Now, first of all, please, let's all take a moment to publicly recognize the fact that this boy was technically 2 months old thirteen days ago. I admit. Having four pretty much sucks up every. single. moment. of life. Seriously. While I do have a ridiculously annoying persistent reminder to take his monthly photo on my iPhone on the 13th of every month, I found myself opting to be reminded the next day, then the next day, then the next day... until I find myself here, almost two weeks past him turning 2 months old, and just over two weeks from him turning 3 months old. #momfail #dontcare

While I'm being honest about my (innumerable) shortcomings, let me acknowledge the completely awful lighting on Squish's 2 month pic below. Mama was tired. Mama had (and still has) 1.2 zillion things on my To Do List. Child chaos encircled me. Editing the image was a luxury of time I could not afford. Did I mention I was tired? And 13 days late in taking the pic in the first place. Y'all. It's terrible. I admit it. Please don't shame me. The good news is, that's one heckuvan adorable baby right there!!

Did I mention it was important to me to be sure his THIGHS made it into the pic? Those thighs! Bigger than my wrist! I'm so not used to having a baby with rolls. I can barely handle the squishiness!

Check out his latest stats...

One Month:

  • Length - 22.25" (91st %ile)
  • Weight - 10 lbs. 15 oz. (65th %ile)

Two Months:

  • Length - 24.5" (96th %ile)
  • Weight - 13 lbs. 3.5 oz. (72nd %ile)
Overall, he's on par with expectations for two month old babies. He's a super awesome eater (see thighs above), and typically has 3-4 hour stretches between feedings. He's worked his way up to several 5-6 hour stretches both during the day and at night, depending on his mood. ;) And he's an excellent sleeper. Essentially he's only up twice during the night. He typically eats around 10 PM or so, and we usually go to bed around midnight or 1 AM. Then Squish wakes up around 3 or 4 AM, and again around 7 AM. I usually roll out of bed around 9 AM. It's a tough life having an uber helpful hubby who works from home a bunch. ;)

Did I mention we're over 3 weeks into our 2017-2018 homeschool year? That's been going AWESOME, but whew is it ever keeping me busy! I'm rolling into my 4th year of homeschooling, and I feel like I'm just now starting to find my groove. I guess that's equates to a big ol' OOPSIES to the past 3 years? Haha! But I'm so on point with the lesson planning, the classroom instruction, the FUN science experiments (major mom points!), and I'm feeling good about where this year will take us. Our Classical Conversations co-op starts next week, and we couldn't be more excited to see our old friends and make new ones! I'm praying that this will be our best year yet!

Now, it's 12:49 AM (almost bedtime!) and I've got a full day of sewing projects lined up for tomorrow, so I'll leave y'all with these adorb snapshots from the GREAT AMERICAN ECLIPSE this past Monday, August 21st:

Saturday, August 5, 2017

Back to School 2017!

We officially kicked off our FOURTH YEAR of homeschooling last week! Our homeschool journey began when LO was in 2nd grade, and she's starting 5th this year! Chase is going into 2nd grade, and E will now be joining us as a K4'er! I can't believe there will be three of them... I'm so outnumbered! And of course I've got little Squish to entertain in between lessons. It will certainly be an interesting year!

Check out my sweet not-so-littles:


LO will be starting 5th grade. She has one more year (after this year) of Foundations and Essentials in our Classical Communications (CC) curriculum before she starts Challenge A as a 7th grader. This is our first year in Cycle 3, and we are all thrilled about it because it's U.S. History and Geography! I taught LO the states and capitals when she was in 2nd grade, and she can't get her hands on enough U.S. history and geography books, so I'm pretty sure she's gonna LOVE this year! We won't begin CC for another 3 weeks, but I wanted to get the kids grounded in the courses we're doing in addition to CC. My hope is that they won't be overwhelmed when we add in our CC memory work! I'm confident LO will excel in ways beyond my expectations as she is such an incredible student with a never-ending thirst for knowledge!


This handsome fella starts 2nd grade this year. I can barely believe it! He has grown and matured in so many ways just over the past 6 months or so. He's so responsible, and he actually follows instructions now without massive meltdowns! WIN! One of my most favorite things about this kid is his love for organization. Yes, I said it! My 7-year-old son loves things to be organized! When I was cleaning up our schoolroom in preparation for the new year, I was sorting through art supplies (endless crayons, colored pencils, markers, etc.) and this guy asked if he could help me! Of course I said an emphatic YES! He sat patiently and sorted through the mess of school things. So yes, he's like a mini-me! #swoon While he was putting the glue sticks in a storage container, I helped him out by putting one in (upside down!) and he immediately removed it, turned it right side up, and put it back in the container. Seriously, a man after my own heart! LOL! Chase has already taken a MAJOR interest in math, and he's proven to have some pretty incredible coding skills as well. I'm looking forward to seeing him continue to develop and excel in the areas that he enjoys, while also hoping for his continued cooperation (minus meltdowns) with the subjects he's not too thrilled about (Ahem ---Grammar --- I'm looking at you!).


The Class Clown is officially starting school! This little dude is always keeping us laughing. I'm not exactly sure what school is going to look like with E as I haven't homeschooled this young yet, but I'm pretty sure it will involve lots of ABCs and 123s! Although he already knows his alphabet, numbers, colors, shapes, and more, so it will be interesting! I think the key here will be finding ways to get LO and Chase working independently so I can focus my time and attention on E. In addition, I will also have LO and Chase working with E, reading to him and working on his basic skills. It's nice that as the kids get older, they are more helpful with the younger ones! This will come in handy in 4 more years when Squish joins our homeschool class!


I'm really excited about our new school year and can't wait to see how the kids learn and grow over the next 9 months! And I'm so glad I opted to start a few weeks early so we can solidify our extra curriculum before CC begins, while also adding to our flexibility to take days off once the weather is actually cool enough to enjoy the great outdoors!

When I think about our homeschool journey, I can't help but be amazed and so very grateful that God has led our family here. I remember how difficult the decision was at first -- I didn't think I was qualified to teach my own children! God promised me that He would be with us and bring us through that first year, and He certainly was faithful to His word! Each year I've told myself I would reevaluate and pray through the decision about whether or not to continue homeschooling. Thankfully, God has placed it on my heart to continue this journey through high school! He continues to meet our needs and provide for us in ways I don't expect, and I couldn't be more thankful. To have the privilege of spending ALL.THE.TIME. with my precious kids so the years don't pass by in a blink... To see firsthand as they learn a new concept and light up with excitement to finally understand something new... To carefully craft curricula that expands their knowledge and love for learning while keeping GOD at the very center of our studies... there is literally nothing like it! Praise be to God for His perfect plan for our family!

Bring it on, 2017-2018! Let's do this!!!!!