The only baby item I couldn't live without

I packed everything but the kitchen sink to go to the hospital when Shepherd was born. I dutifully checked off everything deemed necessary to buy from our registry checklist. I had his nursery finished months in advance. And I would not change any of that for THE WORLD. It was the best time of my entire life. The excitement of a new baby. AHHH. I love it. There is NOTHING like that excitement.
But, once you have a few kids, you realize babies really don't need much. At least in my opinion. They need you to hold them and feed them and a place to sleep. 

But, I have an undying love for the Miracle Blanket. I could live without any other baby supplies. Seriously, I've thought about this, and I could make do without anything else that helps take care of a baby...swings, bumbo, bassinet, toys, wipe warmer, Nose Frida, Sophie the giraffe, diaper pail, pacis... but I could not live without a Miracle Blanket. I've tried tons of different swaddles...nothing compares. The Miracle Blanket is #1.
(Well a paci would be hard to do without, but I would still choose a Miracle Blanket first.)

So in my effort to soak everything up, I just want to document my babies all swaddled and snug in their Miracle Blankets...because now that Chapel has outgrown hers I'll never have a baby in one again. (CRYYYYING.)
 (I didn't know about it until Major was born, and I wish I'd had it for Shep! I never swaddled him because I was clueless and his sleep suffered!)

Chapel:






Breaker:




Major:


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The Last Time

I don't think I could ever read this and not just completely weep. Reading it honestly makes my stomach hurt like I could vomit.



With Chapel being our last baby, I am very aware of these things being "the last time." Its going to happen no matter what, so all I can do is soak it up and enjoy it as much as I can, because there will be a last time, last "firsts," I can't do anything about it, so I try not to dwell on it too much in the moment. But then I have nights like this when I just bawl my eyes out thinking about it. 

I do think I've always been aware of that, and done a good job of living in the moment and enjoying my kids and every stage as much as possible.
But it is hard with Chapel being my last baby. Putting away newborn clothes, and I'll never have a baby that small again. She's about to move into her own room, and I'll never have a little baby sleeping in a bassinet next to me. I'm a total weirdo and I didn't want to start Chapel on solid foods because I knew it would change the way her poop smelled and I have always liked the way my babies poop smelled. I know, I'm a freak.



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7 months with Chapel Raines


This sweet little girl is 7 months old. 

This month she started solids. So far she's had applesauce, green beans, bananas, and rice cereal mixed with breastmilk.

She outgrew her Miracle Blanket (tear) and transitioned to a Zipadee Zip sleep sack. For all of our kids, around 6 months is when their sleep starts a downward spiral. I was looking back on the chair pictures I did for the boys, and on Major's at this age I wrote "Woke up 8x a night" and on Breaker's I wrote "Wakes up approx. 600x a night." I think Shep was the same way. I can't remember when they start sleeping through the night. Anyway, Chapel is not that bad...yet...but about once a week, without fail at least once a week, she will have a night where she wakes up about the time we're going to bed, and just straight up will not go back to sleep. For hours. Its awful. I've been up until like 4am with her just wide awake. She'll be laying in her bassinet and start talking to herself and then she'll start crying to get up and none of my usual tricks will work so one of us has to just get up with her until she's tired again. Other than that, she usually wakes up about 2x a night, nurses and goes right back to sleep.

She is a crazy lady in the bathtub. She splashes so much that I am soaked, the floor is soaked. She still has a little baby bathtub that we sit in the big bath, and she just kicks her legs so hard down on the water.

I should have written this on her picture, but she is also sitting up on her own now.

Its funny, because the boys were never like this...but she has so many toys. With all three of the boys, I never remember them having toys. I know they had them, but they never seemed to care about anything or pay anything much attention. She just seems much more thoughtful??? about toys. Like she'll pay attention to the same toy for a longer amount of time. Does that make sense? She has this little seahorse that lights up and plays music and we've had it since Major was born but it looks brand new because no one ever liked it. I've bought her lots of different "chew" toys because she actually uses them. Again, we had one of those little ring teethers that every baby has that has water in it, and we've had it since Major was a baby and it was brand new condition because the boys didn't play with it. She has a pink unicorn and bunny rabbit rattle and a blankie and lots of different teethers and little baby toys.

Some of my favorite pictures from month 7:










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Chapel's 1st Word

I'm 4 for 4, all of my kids have said "Mama" for their first word. 
Today Chapel was bouncing in her little bouncy seat and I was putting away laundry in the other room, and when I walked back into the living room she looked up at me and grinned and said, "Mama Mama Maaaaaaa."

I love this little angel girl!!




I could not be more thankful.

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What Chapel Wore - Month 7







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Major's 1st Day of School







Major had his very first day of school last week. He is going to 4 day/week preschool.  This kid was just born ready. On his first day Joey and I both (and Chapel and Breaker) walked him into school and to his classroom. He had woken up about 2 hours before it was necessary and asked me all morning if we could leave yet. On the way to school he told me his belly hurt and I thought he might be nervous, so I asked him if he was and he said, "I'm not nervous, just excited to make new friends."

I texted Joey this morning after I dropped him off and just said, "Major is literally such a joy." 
As soon as we pulled into the parking lot he yelled, "I'm so excited!!!" Its such a relief as a parent to know he is just excited and happy and I never really have to worry about him. He's so fun and easy and Joey and I have both said we are envious of his personality. I just admire him so much.

Probably my biggest prayer for Major specifically, is that he always has confidence. I just think he's the coolest guy I've ever met and I never want him to doubt himself, I want him to always let his true self shine because he's a joy.



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An ACTUAL DOLL BABY

CAN. YOU. EVEN.
I CANNOT.
I have no words other than I'm obsessed.







I know this is obvious, but isn't it just crazy how IN LOVE you are with your baby? Like, Chapel girl, I will just EAT YOU UP. Ahh I love her.
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