Greetings from 2016.

Hello blog world.

 

It’s been quite a while since I’ve graced you all with my presence, I’m sorry. I don’t really even know where to begin. Last time I checked in I was a stay at home mom with a 3 year old and a 6 month old. Now, I’m a student at the local Nursing College and have one year until I have graduated as a RN. Big changes, Huuuuge. I have a 6 year old (1st grader) and a 3 year old (starting her first week of daycare this week), what?!

 

I’m still married to my amazing husband, Colby, and we still live in our first ever purchased home here in Missouri. I work on the cardiac floor of the hospital as a nurse tech and I love my job, however, the 12 hour work days leave my feet and back pleading with me at the end of the day.

 

I always wanted to be a nurse, really. I remember as a kid I would always put my dolls under milk crates because that was their incubator and I would be their nurse and bring them back from the brink. I chose nursing as my first major too, only I had an advisor who wasn’t too confident in my abilities and told me this wasn’t the profession for me. I have no regrets changing my major to teaching because I did learn a lot and had a great time in the process. I am glad though that at the age of 30 I was able to start all over again and do what I love. Not only am I doing what I love, I’m also getting scholarships left and right while doing it. (I’m allowed to brag, stick it advisor.) This time around I am a much better student, not that I was bad before, but I think as a parent and wife I realize I have people who are counting on me doing well, and as a perfectionist I’m super hard on myself. I have two semesters left and I cannot wait to see where this career takes me.

 

Emery is starting 1st grade in two days, I want to cry admitting that. We were so nervous when he started kindergarten last year because he is the sweetest little guy and so sensitive, we didn’t want him to get walked on. He has done amazing! We were never worried about how he would do academically because he’s a super smart kid, but socially we didn’t want him to just be a follower. His wonderful kindergarten teacher assured us that he was able to hold his own and voiced his opinion when something was going on that he didn’t like. Leaving kindergarten was bittersweet because he loved his teacher so much, but he is very excited to get started again.

 

Cecilia is 3 years old now and is getting ready to start her very first day in daycare, ever. She stayed with my sister when I started back to school and we were happy about that, but she’s getting closer to school and needs more structure so we’ve finally found childcare that we think works best for our family. She is the sassiest little three year old and goes nowhere without her baby (a stuffed lamb that says baby’s first Easter across the front), a dress, and heels. She’s giving us a run for our money.

 

I recently stopped social media, but decided I’d pick up on blogging even if it’s just a couple of posts a month.

 

-Xo

 

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Thanksgiving 2013

This year we spent the day of Thanksgiving with my side of the family. We went to my mom and dad’s on Thursday and had an amazing meal followed by sitting around wondering why we’ve all gained weight. Emery was so excited for pumpkin pie and for weeks prior has been talking about it nonstop. He even got to make a pumpkin pie after dinner with his Great Grandma Giddy.

After Thanksgiving dinner, I’m sad to admit, I was conned into going Black Friday Black Thursday? shopping. The kids went home with Colby and I was in the trenches with Stori, Mom, and Aunt Doo. We had a lot of fun, but people are really serious about their $1 movies! I walked away with a couple of baby toys for Cecilia and some pajamas for Emery. Earlier that morning I had finished all of my Christmas shopping from the comforts of my couch so I wasn’t really in the market for anything.

Friday I cleaned all day like a mad woman almost in a manic state (Window trim, door trim, and base boards painted) I also cleaned every room in the house and put up the Christmas tree.  Emery helped while Ceciila snoozed away in her room, when it was time for her to be up she was mesmerized by the bright lights of the tree. She’s been rolling around all morning pulling off ornaments and trying to eat them. We made sure to only put the jingle bells at the bottom of the tree, we learned the hard way with Emery.

On Saturday we all headed down to Branson to be with the Jennings’ crew at Big Cedar Lodge where we had family photos taken and rode a sleigh ride to see all the lights. We went to Silver Dollar City as well and Emery rode his first roller coaster ever with Colby. It was a wonderful end to a wonderful Thanksgiving break.

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Playing catch up.

Finding time to sit down and write about life when life is happening all around me is becoming increasingly difficult.

Since I last posted about Emery’s birthday, another birthday happened! Cecilia Grace was born May 17th, 2013. We are totally in love. It has been such a crazy transition, but we’re all pushing through it and it’s getting better every day.

Cecilia Grace:  May 17th, 2013 born at 2:41 p.m, weighing 7lbs 6.5 oz (only 1 oz smaller than Emery) 19in long -although, a couple days later at a weight check Celia measured 21 in long.  I don’t think that they had her stretched out all the way in the hospital. She has the most perfect features and the most ridiculous head of brunette hair, I adore it.

Just an hour old. 

Life as we know it around the Jennings’ household has changed. In the hospital after I had Cecilia and family went home and I had time to think I had a mini panic attack. I was absolutely exhausted from the events leading up to this beautiful girl’s arrival and the baby in the room next to us was screaming and I absolutely lost it. I was worried I couldn’t take care of two babies, I missed the little boy at home who didn’t really understand all that was going on, and the hospital staff really sucked. Breastfeeding was hard, harder than I remembered, and the lactation consultant kept telling me “breast is best”.

The first man you’ll ever love.

Colby was doing the best he could to convince me that I was just exhausted and to get some sleep, but Cecilia wouldn’t sleep and therefore, I couldn’t sleep. By the time it was all said and done I had been up more than 36 hours and was at my absolute breaking point. At one point during the day I was in the bathroom shower sitting in the corner vomiting and bawling all at the same time. Thank God for mom’s. My mom came the next morning and sat with me in that bathroom and talked me off the proverbial ledge.

First family photo. Your brother looks concerned. 

When we left that hospital and the apathetic nurses and came home that next day I felt so much better. I was so uncomfortable in the hospital. I needed to have my own space, food, bed, and comfort. I came home and ate an entire container of watermelon and we made it through our first night at home fairly well. Colby’s parents took Emery for the weekend so we could focus on trying to sleep. Turns out, this little girl is nothing like her big brother when it came to sleeping. She actually likes to sleep. I needed this- I deserve this. Emery woke up at least every 2 hours until he was 14 months old. Cecilia lets me get in the occasional 4 hour stretch and just the other day at 7 weeks old she let me sleep from 10:30-5:15 in the morning!!

This is what mommy looks like after a whirlwind labor. 

Right now sweet baby Cecilia is sleeping in her swing and big brother is asleep in his room while I take time out to recall things that have happened these past 7 weeks. I won’t type out the birth story tonight, but that will come soon. Right now I’m just enjoying my sweet little family of four and feeling more confident that I am capable of juggling two babies and still maintaining part of myself in the process. Motherhood is the hardest job I’ve ever had, but it’s also been the best job I’ve ever had.

Thanks for picking me to be your mommy.

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Happy 3rd Birthday, Emery Jack!

Dear Emery,

I cannot believe that my little baby is no longer “2 and 3 quarters”, but is a three year old big boy. As we’re approaching your sister’s birthday I cannot believe we’re getting ready to start this journey all over again with a new little one. You are certainly excited about baby Cecilia’s arrival and talk about holding her and kissing her all the time.

We had your birthday party on April 20th, 2013 a Saturday and all of your family and friends were there. You had a Jake and the Neverland Pirates birthday party and you were SO excited about it. The month leading up to April you woke up everyday and asked me what day it was and if it was “your April” yet. Then, when April came around you wanted to know what day it was because you knew that your birthday was April 24th.

There were so many people and fun, we BBQ’d and had a picnic out in our backyard. Daddy and I bought you a sand and water table for your birthday this year equipped with an umbrella to keep you in the shade and you, Maggie, Macee, and Cooper played in the sand and water all afternoon. Eventually you ended up with sandy mud all over your face thanks to your cousins.

Playing in your sand table with Cooper, Mag, and Macee.

Your pirate ship birthday cake. 🙂

Mommy had a massive melt down a few hours
before your party because it needed to be “perfect”. I sometimes set super goals for myself and need to learn that you will have fun no matter what regardless of whether the streamers are hanging up where they need to be or not. I’m working on being more laid back. I think I’ll always be working on that. It hit me hard that this would be your last birthday as an only child and next year we’ll be planning a 4th birthday along with a 1st birthday and the thought of that is a little overwhelming at times.

That night, after your party was over, we had a scare and had to take you to the emergency room because you had a rectal prolapse. I have never been so scared in my life. We had no idea what was going on and even though you didn’t seem to be in any pain I was terrified that something was horribly wrong with you. Your daddy did a good job of trying to calm me down, but I know that he was really worried about you too. I was crying and even you were looking up at me and reassuring me that it was going to be “alright, Mama” “We’ll take you to the ‘hopital’ for a check-up.” It broke my heart that I was the grown up and you were trying to take care of me. I’m totally in love with you. You are the best boy in the world.

The ER doctors told us we “lucked out” in the kid department.
They thought you were amazing.

We sat in the ER for 3 hours, but it seemed like an eternity and both sets of Nana’s and Papa’s showed up to keep us calm. They stayed with us until we were reassured that although this was pretty rare (only happens in 10% of children) that they
thought you would be fine and told us the steps to take if it happened again. I went to bed that night sobbing to your Dad that I wanted to put you in a bubble and keep anything bad from ever happening to your or your little sister. If I could stay with you your entire life and be your “shield” I would gladly do that and take any ounce of pain that might come your way, but I know that those are life lessons, and changing moments in peoples lives.

At the movies!

On the Wednesday that was your actual birthday daddy and I woke you up and took pictures of you before you were even awake in your room. This has sort of become a tradition. Then, we took you into the kitchen where I had made you pancakes with sprinkles and a candle. We sang you Happy Birthday and let you make a wish. Daddy had to go to work, but you and I made a day of it. First, we went to the theater and saw The Croods, we were the only two people in the theater and we sat really close so we could see all the action. You ate an ENTIRE movie theater sized hot dog with the bun, popcorn, and we drank lemonade. I had the most amazing time watching you watch the movie. You loved it. When daddy came home we went to Yogurtini, the frozen yogurt place by our home and had frozen yogurt with Uncle Jake and Aunt Gina.

You have grown into the best 3 year old I know and I cannot wait to see what this year holds for you. You are precious beyond words and I love you to the moon and back!

Did I ever mention that your definition of being “big” is being able to reach the Sixlets (candy on the high shelf) and being able to ride the school bus? I can’t wait to see what you think being “big” is next year.

Love,

Mama

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Emery Jack is 2 1/2!! Month 30.

Dear Emery Jack,

Today you are 2 1/2 years old. Time flies my love. You are spending a few days at your Nana and Papaw Jennings’ house. I can’t actually hug you and give you love today, but I am absolutely sending sweet vibes your way. I told your Nana this morning to give you a 2 1/2 birthday kiss from me.

You are the absolute light of my life and I cannot imagine not having your sweet face around. I am always so happy to come into your room in the morning to snuggle you when you wake up and listen to your “dreams” you had that night. Your most recent dream that you told me about was walking to the park with Nana and reading books, “LOTS of books”. It amazes me that at 2.5 you are sharing with me the dreams you had the night before. Now, whether they’re truly dreams or just imagination working overtime we’ll never know, but either way it’s pretty great.

You don’t look thrilled, but I promise you love it!
My not so cowardly lion 🙂

This past month we went to a party thrown for your Great Gma Dot. Everyone got to dress up in costume and you dressed up as Mickey Mouse. You absolutely fell in love with the outfit when I took you to party city to decided on a costume. You decided early on that you wanted to be a pumpkin, but when you saw that it was possible for you to be Mickey Mouse you were sold. It is a very cute costume, it has ears, gloves, and a body suit. You are obsessed with the gloves, I even caught you eating your Cheez-its with your gloves on. A friend of ours also gave you a costume that her little boy grew out of it’s a lion. It is adorable! You tried it on a few days ago and it’s been really warm for this late in October you were sweating and I told you we needed to take it off. You had HUGE tears and said, “Please don’t take it off!” So you wore it for a few more minutes. 🙂

Lots of family on Nana Cookie’s side.

I love you to the moon and back!

Love,

Mommy

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Month 29

Dear Emery Jack,

This past month has been a crazy one. I cannot believe we’re adding to the family and I must admit when I first found out that I was pregnant I was so happy, but a little piece of me was worried that you might feel like you were being left out. I never EVER want you to feel like you are less than amazing. You are the best thing that ever happened to your dad and I. Now we’re just adding another amazing person to our brood 🙂

A few days ago we were driving in the car with the windows down and you heard a little kid outside, you immediately yelled, “I hear the baby everybodies!” You also think that you have a baby in your belly which makes me laugh.

The sweetest kid I know. 

Another thing we tried this past month was gymnastics. You absolutely loved it, but since I’ve not been feeling well and we had been doing so much swimming we opted out of gymnastics until we slow down a little. I promise that we’ll soon get you into another program where you can jump to your hearts desire, “like Superman” as you would say. There are going to be so many doctor bills coming up and we just made the executive decision to wait until next Fall to begin something like that. By then you’ll be able to grasp the concept a little better and know that there are more things to it than bouncing, even though bouncing is why I like it too.

Sitting on your “spot” waiting patiently for your turn. 
“Look Mama I bouncing!”

I’ll leave you with a few things you’ve said to me this past month:

  • I went to get you in the morning after hearing you talking in your room this is what you told me, “Mama I was crying. (You were? Why were you crying?) Cause a ‘pider was talking to me. A ‘cary one. (A scary spider was talking to you? Was he nice?) Yaaaassss.”
  • “Thank you for sharing your apple juice with me. It makes me happy.”
  • “Welcome to Sodor!”
  • “No spider, NO don’t kickle (tickle) me!” — This one had me worried.
  • “I’m gonna save the day!”
There are, I’m sure, many more, but these stood out to me. 

I love you to the moon and back!

Love,

Mama

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Month 28- A little late…

Dear Emery Jack,

I’m going to quit explaining why I’m always late writing these posts… I’ve come to the conclusion that I’ll always be late 🙂

The past month has been a great one! You are such a talker. You would talk our ears off if we let you— most of the time you do. You are becoming so curious to how things work and how your actions effect things. The fact that I’m able to stay home with you still blows my mind because your daddy and I never thought one of us would be able to stay home with you. When I’m around you so often I don’t think I notice the changes as much as your grandparents might.

The past month you have grown up so much so that when I give you kisses after a nap or first thing in the morning you tell me, “No, Mama don’t kiss me.” or “No, Mama don’t hug me.” When did you become a teenager? Still, you always ask me to kiss your booboos if you get hurt and they normally make things all better.

Another crazy thing that happened this month was when daddy came home one night right before it was time for dinner and was hugging you and playing with you. When dinner was ready daddy picked you up off of his lap and somehow your little elbow popped out of place. We had no idea why you were crying- daddy wasn’t rough with you and he didn’t hear anything pop. We were so worried about you. I had to go get a scarf I had and wrapped it around your little body to hold your arm close to your it. We left the house immediately both of us feeling sick about it, our poor little baby was in so much pain and you kept asking me to kiss it. When we got to the hospital we kept having to explain what happened and eventually they decided it was your elbow (apparently it is extremely common in kids from 2 to 4 it’s called Nursemaid’s Elbow) You had to have x-rays and I couldn’t go in with you so daddy took you in and I could hear you screaming all the way out in the hallway where I was sitting. I so much hate to hear my baby cry, especially when you’re in pain. It was a really rough day, but really rough on your daddy, so I had to be the strong one and try to console both of my boys. After, we got the x-rays back they confirmed it was your elbow and the nurse began to try to pop your arm back in place. It broke our hearts. You were screaming and then you said something that broke my heart and made me laugh inside as well. You told the nurse as she was trying to pop your arm back into place to, “Don’t bite your friends.” This is something that we’ve been telling you to make sure you’re being a nice boy and I think you decided that since she was hurting you and you weren’t sure why to ‘not bite her friends’.  As soon as she had it in place you immediately started using it again and acted like you had never been in pain. You were a whole new boy! After we were done your Uncle Jake and Gina met us at the hospital and we went to dinner because our dinner was sitting on the kitchen table untouched.
Another new thing this month is lack of sleep. You have decided that you do not want to go to bed and you cry and cry and scream for us to hold you. It absolutely kills me to hear you. I normally put you to bed after we read a few books then I go take a shower so I don’t have to hear you so upset. You were pretty sick a few weeks ago and you slept in our bed for three or four days. Now, you think you need to be with us all the time. If you were a sound sleeper and didn’t roll and kick all through the night I may have considered it, but NO ONE sleeps when you’re in our bed. I am going to switch your bed into a toddler bed and pray that this makes you want to sleep in your own bed. 
You’ve also started trying to use the potty more. I’ve been a little lax on making you go on the potty, but when you ask to go then we’re in there right away! You have pooped on the potty the past few days. I have been giving you iced animal crackers with sprinkles if you go on the potty. You call them “Happy Birthday Crackers.” *but it sounds like- (Happy dirday tackers)
One more thing before I close this letter to you… Your daddy and I love you very much, we think you are an amazing little boy and we know you’re going to make an amazing big brother. You are going to have a sibling in May and the thought scares the hell out of me, but I know our love will grow. There are going to be so many things you’ll be able to teach your new little brother or sister and I know you’ll be wonderful in that role. You told me about a month ago that you wanted to have a little brother then said, “That would be fun, huh?!” 
It’s definitely going to be a crazy ride, but we’ll all get through it together and we’ll have another precious baby for it. 
Love, 
Mama
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Month 25, 26, 27.

Dear Emery Jack,

I’ve been lacking on my timing and I hate that because I don’t want to miss writing down anything that has happened in the past few months, but at the same time I’m too busy living what’s going on to take time out to write about it. 🙂 I’ll try to sum up our past few months.

I’ve already blogged about May and June (we went to California in June) so I’ll begin with July.

July was a great month! You’ve been getting so big and continue to amaze your daddy and I daily. For the fourth of July we went to Aurora to spend it with Nana, Papa, Giddy, Maggie, Macee, Uncle Kyle, and Sissy(Aunt Stori). We went to our friends house in the country and had a wonderful BBQ at Charley and Britney’s. You had fun playing with all of Brayden’s cars and chasing around all the other kids at the house. When it started getting dark outside we decided we’d try out fireworks. I knew you weren’t going to be thrilled because Uncle Jake, Gina, you, and I went to see some fireworks in Republic earlier in the week and you squeezed me so hard and made me put my hands over your ears. For a brief moment I had you convinced that they were not scary and that in fact they were Angry Birds flying through the sky. It only fooled you long enough for you to point at them and laugh nervously before you buried your head in my arm pit.

So, needless to say, you spent the evening clinging to me and saying, “Go bye-bye.” over and over. At one point in the night I stood up and let go of you and you were stuck to me like a little spider monkey. It was time to go :).

That next weekend we spent with the Jennings’ side of your family. It was a pool party and you had such a great time. We played all afternoon in the pool and you were so wore out, but insisted it was time to go back in the pool.

Swimming lessons at the OCC

July also marked your first swimming lessons at the Ozark Community Center here in Ozark where we moved to. You went for two weeks M-TH from 11:00-11:30. You have really worked hard for Chelsea our swim instructor, but were very polite when you didn’t want to put your face in the water telling her, “No thank you.” She was impressed by how polite you were. We finished swim lessons two days ago and you’ve been asking about swimming every day since then. We did buy a family pass for the year at the OCC so we’ll be swimming all year round since it’s a heated indoor pool! Your daddy got to see you swim this past week since he’s done with work and you were so excited. We took you in the lazy river to work on your arm strokes and you said, as you were flailing your arms, “Look daddy I FWIMMIN!” You were so proud of yourself!

Yes Love, you’re number 1. 

Today is Maggie’s birthday party she turned six years old yesterday. I cannot believe that your Aunt Stori has a six year old. What’s harder to believe is that when you are six years old Maggie will be 10! Time goes by far too quickly.

Emery Jack, I love you to the moon and back!

Love,

Mommy

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Happy 2nd Birthday to my Love.

Dear Emery Jack,

The past month has been a crazy one. We’ve managed to have your birthday party, I finished my last official day as a teacher, although I feel like I’ll always be a teacher at heart and I’ll always be teaching you.

We started off your birthday by singing as I got you up to go to daycare. I was devastated to
drop you off because I didn’t want to be away from you on your birthday. I took you to the grocery store early so we could have  doughnut holes and buy some treats to take to daycare so it could be a “special” day. You got to bring apples and watermelon. Miss Sharon said you all loved it. When I picked you up from daycare I asked you if you had a great birthday and you said, “YEAH!” We walked out of the daycare singing Happy Birthday. We went home and I made Rigatoni for dinner and your Nana, Papa, and Giddy came to dinner that night. Uncle Kyle, Aunt Stori, Maggie, and Macee came too. That night we all played in the backyard throwing the football and playing with the bouncy balls and bubbles. It was a wonderful day for your daddy and I because you were so happy. We love to see you laugh, you make us So incredibly happy and proud.

The following Saturday we had a train birthday party for you. You were so excited to get to open all of your gifts. All day long you were singing “Happy to you, Happy to YOU!” It is so wonderful to see you smile and be so happy. Your big gifts this year were things to ride on. We got your a cozy truck to drive around. You like to put your angry birds in the back with your trains and drive around the house. You also got a tricycle from Aunt Stori that you love to drive around. Your feet don’t reach the pedals, but you still love to scoot yourself around the house.

You are getting so big. This past month you’ve been singing “Twinkle, Twinkle”, The ABC’s when you get to QRS you skip to Y and Z. When I first heard you sing it by yourself I almost cried, when did you became such a big kid? You love to play with your angry birds and sometimes I worry that when you get older you’ll think anything that isn’t electronic is boring. I’ve cut you back on your technology for that reason, but also because I like to play with you and sometimes when you’re playing those games you tune everything else out including your mommy.

Our lives are about to change immensley due to the fact that you’ll be getting to stay home with me and I’m opening my own business. I hope this shows you that you can do anything. I went to school to be a teacher and since I’ve had you my eyes opened up to the parent side of teaching. It’s a little disheartening and I want to spend as much time with you as possible. I also will be working from home and it’s a huge leap of faith to go into business for yourself, but with the support of your daddy I know we’ll be just fine.

I love you to the moon and back, Emery.

LOVE,

Mommy

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My 2 year old!

Dear Emery Jack,

A lot has happened since my sweet little boy has turned two. We had a wonderful birthday party, which I know I blogged about, but it’s not here….weird. We had a great birthday party complete with lots of trains and cars and tractors. You LOVE riding your “bikes”. So many people were at your birthday party to share the excitement with you. You sat at the table in a big boy chair and were SO excited when you saw your “Happy Cake” You love when people sing happy birthday, in fact, you will just break out into “Happy Birthday” while we’re at restaurants or driving in the car. You like to sing it to ever person you can remember ever meeting- Including the cat.

You are such a wonderful little boy and bring so much happiness into our lives. Thinking of our lives without you seem so dull and boring in comparison to what we were missing. We are so in love with you. You are so sensitive to others and get very worried if you think someone is upset or hurt. You ask “Better Mama?” over and over again until I tell you I’m ok, even if I wasn’t upset to begin with. You are very in tune to people’s tones in their voice. For instance in the car while driving now, I cannot be frustrated with other drivers like I used to. If I say anything with any tone other than my normal tone you get upset and ask me if I’m better. I now have to tell people their crazy drivers with a smile on my face.  You’re doing a great job of making me be a better person. I consciously have to think about how I conduct myself every second of my life when I’m with you, it shouldn’t be any other way, but I realize that’s why some moms go nuts. Sometimes you need to be allowed to be frustrated. 🙂

When you turned 25 months old we moved to Ozark, MO and live about 5 duplexes down from your Uncle Jake and Gina. You did very good with the move and I’m so glad because at first you couldn’t understand why we weren’t going home. I kept having to take you to your bedroom and explain to you that we are home, these are your things. You also had your very last day of daycare with all of your friends: Ayden, Jorja, and Ethan. You ask about them still and get our your play cell phone and call them up every once and a while just to chat. I have a picture of all four of you hanging on our refrigerator so we can talk about them when we have dinner. I struggled with the thought of taking you out of daycare because these were the first friends you had ever made and I was taking you away from everything you knew. You seem to be doing ok though. Maybe this will come back to haunt me when you’re a teenager and you look back on your blossoming social life :). I hope not.

We recently went on our first vacation as a family to Los Angeles, California. The Jennings’ side of the family packed up to see your GG and Uncle Daron because he has cancer and doesn’t want to be far from his doctors. So we brought the party to his doorstep 🙂

You did AMAZING. Such a trooper you were. You turned 26 months old the first full day were were there. We went to the beach and you got buried up to your armpits by Uncle Jake and Uncle Matt. You even helped them by packing sand around yourself. You loved it! The memories we continue to make with you every day I delicately fold away and put in my pocket to keep with me always.

I picked you up from your Sissy’s house the other night after dad and I had a date night out and you looked at me and said, “Mama, I so happy to see you!” You melt my heart.

I love you so very much!

Love,

Mama

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