Hello, everyone! I thought that maybe it was time for a little update on happenings around here!

  • First and foremost, hello, September! I can now say that I am due this month and that is a very good feeling. Yes, I am exhausted and tired of being pregnant and all those things but we are also getting so excited to meet this little boy! My mother-in-law will be here in just a few days, right when I hit 38 weeks, and as soon as she’s here I’ll be totally ready for this baby to make his debut. For some reason one of my biggest stressors surrounding labor is what will happen with my girls when we head to the hospital. We have great friends who would absolutely step in to care for them but I just feel so much better when I know they are in their own house with Grandma taking care of them. So hold on til then, baby! Our hospital also recently updated their CoVid rules stating that I can have one support person (Ben) and that he can’t leave the hospital once he’s there, which is just another reason I’m grateful his mom is coming. Anyhow, we still don’t have a name picked out but hopefully when we see him…
  • In other news, this summer was super busy. I feel like we always take pretty great advantage of summers, since that’s when Ben has a break, but this year I think we took things to the next level. It seems like we never went more than a week without having something going on. We went to our usual spots like Idaho and Utah to visit family. But then we also visited Boston (well, just me on that one), Albuquerque, Cedar City (where I went to college), and The Great Wolf Lodge in Scottsdale (it was so fun). We also had quite a few people come visit us. We usually have some visitors but it seems like we had visitors in excess this summer which was awesome.
  • One of my favorite, non-travely things we did this summer was go for bike rides. We did a lot of bike rides last summer but I was thinking we’d have to give them up this summer just because of my energy levels. We did do some bike rides with me on the mountain bike, but Ben decided to get another e-bike (this time a version that’s better for trails, a must have here). When the new bike got here sometime in July it changed our bike riding lifestyle. Now both Ben and I can be on an e-bike and we can each carry a child. We’ve done a handful of 20+ mile rides, plus lots of shorter ones and had so much fun with it. We live in an incredibly bike-friendly place; there are trails everywhere and we’ve tried to take full advantage. It’s been fun AND it’s been a really great and low-key way for me to exercise.
  • Ben is back at it with school. I think summer was really good for all of us to take a breath and reset. We love getting more time with Ben during the summer and it’s always hard to let him get back to school/work. But it also means I get to lean in more to my inherent schedule-loving self and I think that’s good for me. He still has 2 years left (at least), but now he’s working on his dissertation so his day to day looks different than the last 2 years and I think he’s liking the change.
  • We decided to pause preschool for a bit (mostly because we have a baby coming and that tends to make me not want to commit to anything outside our home…and also germs), but I did want to keep the girls learning. Wendy’s been showing more interest in letters so we’ve been focusing on a letter a week. It’s very low-key but it’s been fun for me to plan and the girls love it. I’ve also been trying to incorporate math and science where I can (letters and art are easy for me to enjoy and share; math and science not so much). But it’s been great for us, especially since I brainstorm activities ahead of time, so if there’s a lull or we are in need of a change of pace, I have something already in my head that we can be doing. We’ll see if I can keep this up but here’s to hoping we can make it through the whole alphabet!
  • Speaking of my girls, they are doing great! I mean, they have turned into crazy monsters since Ben went back to school (maybe directly related to how much energy I’ve been having) but otherwise they are awesome! Wendy’s favorite thing as of late is to make up songs. And she will sing any time, any place, often more loudly than she ought. But she loves it and is actually very good, especially at making sure her songs have rhymes. She’s also drawing a lot lately and that’s been fun for me to watch. For a long time she wouldn’t draw or color at all (I suspect she’s a bit of a perfectionist and that she was too worried about not doing it perfectly) but she’s gotten in the groove of coloring and I love seeing her creativity. One of my favorite things she draws are clouds but after she draws them she bursts out laughing and says “they look like tacos!!” And they really do look like tacos.
  • I think one of my favorite things about having multiple children is that it really points out the unique (and sometimes eccentric) qualities of each individual child. Likes, dislikes and tendencies are exacerbated when they’re only seen in one child instead of both. So Greta’s obsession with pirates is definitely unique to Greta because Wendy has never been into pirates (maybe that’s her fate because of her name…). Anyway, Greta has this ruffled, shorts jumpsuit that is red, white and blue striped and for some reason she has dubbed it her pirate jumpsuit and wants to wear it all the time (for the record, it doesn’t strike me as pirate-y at all, but whatever). I don’t know, kids are weird. But she’s also the sweetest girl in the whole world. One time I was upset and she came to me and said, “What’s wrong, Mom?” I told her what was going on and she said, “Oh, it’s okay. Come here.” And she came right over and gave me the biggest hug. She does stuff like that all the time and it definitely gives me all the feels and makes me feel like I need to be a better person.
  • For the past few years, sewing has been my go-to when I had downtime but that’s changed since I got pregnant. I still sew occasionally but I’ve been doing a lot more sitting down and reading. I’ve noticed that the closer I get to my due date, the more difficult time I’ve had concentrating on anything heavy or wordy so I’ve mostly been reading exceptionally fluffy YA books. If you have any recommendations (fluffy, YA or otherwise), let me know!
  • A couple things I’ve been loving:
    • We got this portable carpet cleaner awhile ago, after wanting to get one for a long time and I love it! It’s advertised for pet owners, but it really ought to be advertised for child owners (aka: parents) because that’s the sole reason why we need this machine. It’s really proven its worth!
    • My sister had this gel nail polish kit when we visited her this summer and it was so fun that I bought one for myself. It’s been a very nice treat-yo-self kind of thing to do in the evenings for my pregnant self AND the girls have had a lot of fun getting their nails done too (we had slipped into them doing their own nails which was a surefire way to invoke the demons of hell into our home, but with the gel kit I’m doing all the painting which really reins in the chaos, thank heavens). Ben got me this glitter set for my birthday and they are sparklerific.
    • For anyone who’s pregnant, I’ve been wearing these maternity yoga shorts pretty much every day this summer. They are not see through, very stretchy and very comfortable. Oh, and they have pockets!
    • I’ve been wanting and researching a workout watch for a very long time. I eventually narrowed my sights in on the Garmin Vivoactive 3 and Ben surprised me with it for Mother’s Day. I haven’t been running like I’d like to be, but that hasn’t stopped me from figuring out how to use this watch and totally loving it as well. I didn’t care to have anything super fancy; there are certainly watches that are more technologically advanced (and also ones that are more attractive), but this one has fit the bill. The only thing I really wanted it to do is track my mileage and my time for running, which it does, but it also tracks steps, goals, heart rate, and other sports/activities (including swimming). It connects to my phone so it can tell me the weather and notify me when I’m getting a phone call or a text (I can read the text but can’t respond). I have two complaints: one being that it only tracks about half my steps if I’m pushing a stroller (or shopping cart). And two is that it only counts intensity minutes if I’ve clicked into a workout, otherwise my high heart rate just registers as stress. But on all other counts, it’s been awesome and we’ve compared it to Ben’s bike (which tracks mileage as well) and it seems to be very accurate.
  • Anyway, that’s a bit about our family! I hope all of you have been doing well, staying safe and healthy. And I’ll be sure to let you all know (eventually) when Baby Boy comes 🙂

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