Monday, October 6, 2014

Pumpkin Painting Party Invitations

Fun fact: my due date for E is the day after Lola's 2nd birthday.

Well, it was anyway. But I just found out that my OB switched the date. I have no idea how or when this arbitrarily happened as this is my first (ever) spontaneous conception. But apparently when you get pregnant outside of a lab, things like date moving take place? Seems like a whole lot of tomfoolery to me.

I had hoped that the girls would share a birthday. Four kids. Two birthdays. Only one set of twins. It was too awesome not to wish for, but given the state of the state, I don't think E will be cooking for that much longer.

Me being me, I had started planning Lola's second birthday the day after her first birthday.

Birthdays are a big deal around these parts. I grew up in a household that often forgot birthdays or used the acknowledgment of a birthday to manipulate. It was awful to have the very people who should be celebrating you make you feel insignificant, or worse. To me a someone's birthday is the day they came into the world. Without that day, this person you are celebrating wouldn't exist and then who would you love? It is special. And sacred.

On your birthday you should feel loved and appreciated and, most of all, happy. In a word, complete.

I am over the top with my kids' birthdays, and part of that is totally for me. But my special crazy is for them too. I want them to know how much they mean to me (to us), how loved they are, I want them to feel like the day that they came into the world was the most special day of a lifetime.

I know they feel it. Reese remembers every part of her third birthday and talks about it all the time. And this year on my birthday, when the day was over, Reese looked up and said to me, "Mommy, wait! Your day can't be over, we need the decorations and your friends." She knows a birthday is supposed to be celebrated with people you love. I have done my job. (Well, part of it.)

Anyway, I am working through my psychoses in therapy, I assure you. And cutting myself some slack. Or so I thought, anyway.

Specifically, I shelved Lola's original over-the-top second birthday ideas until next year when it can be a combined 1st and 3rd birthday for her and E. I whittled down the guest list. And I simplified by doing treats only, instead of a full meal with a party...

...and then, in what can only be described as cosmically bad timing, I planned the party for three days before my new (to me) due date.

Since I pared down so much of the party, I unleashed the crazy with her invitations -- hand painted pumpkins with custom tags.

Look, Rome wasn't built in a day and my crazy won't be fixed in a year.

Regardless, I'm really excited for Lo's little get together. I hope that even though there's a new baby coming into this world -- possibly on her birthday -- and there's a lot of chaos going on, in general, that she feels loved and special. October 17, 2012, was one of the most important days of my life. I am excited to share the culmination of my beautiful girl's second year in this world with our closest friends and family. And I really (really, really) hope I am around to host it!

Tuesday, August 19, 2014

Lemon Drop's Maternity Pictures

I almost didn't do photos because I thought with a third pregnancy (fourth kid) they were superfluous. But I started thinking about what it would be like to be the last kid born and not have pictures like these that the rest of your siblings had. And I've been so busy with the kids and life and work that I haven't taken a whole lot of time to just be in the moment with this pregnancy. These photos were a gift to my new precious baby and, even more, to myself. 

About a month before they were supposed to be taken, I had a hormonal meltdown and I wanted to set my closet and myself on fire. I just was so emotional and felt so grody that I said to hell with it, I'm not doing this, I'm not spending time and energy and money on silly photos. A few girlfriends pulled me up by my bootstraps and let me throw my hormonal hissy fit and got me back on track. I love you girls, thank you. The end result is a handful of images capturing, celebrating, reveling in my last pregnancy. I couldn't be more thankful.


Reese and Lo are so excited about number four. Reese sings itsy bitsy and the ABCs to lemon drop and when the song is over she asks me if the baby woke up and smiles widely at me and says, "did you feel her kick?" The baby usually doesn't, but I always say yes. Tonight, in an effort to thwart bedtime she told me she wanted to feel for the baby and when she put her hand on my belly lemon drop gave her a whopping thump and Reese's eyes bulged out of her head and she whispered, "I felt that." 

Bean lifts up my shirt and kisses my belly all day long. She sings and signs baby and blows my belly kisses. I don't know how, at her age, she understands that there is a baby in my belly. But she seems to know lemon drop is there, I just know she's going to be the best big sister. She's got so much love to give and she's such a gentle little girl. I can't wait for them to meet her. 

We had a pretty bad storm here a few weeks ago and Ryan was woken up by all the thunder and lightning. He ended up wide awake in my bed for several hours, and we just laid there quietly and held each other. Around 4:30 a.m. lemon drop woke up and started wiggling, which is her normal routine every night. I pulled Ryan's hand to my belly and he moved his tiny palm around my skin and played with his sister, giggling, eyes-wide, completely in awe and baffled by the movements that were happening. When she finally settled back in, he grabbed my hand and put it under his shirt and said, "momma, feel baby in my belly?" Sweetness. Pure, pure sweetness. 

Eight weeks until she's here and my little family is complete. By the time lemon drop is here, I will have been pregnant more than 800 days over the last four and a half years. That just baffles me. I thought I would never be a momma. And here I am with my arms and heart just bursting at the seams. 

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