They Are Here

Their bedrooms are a little messy and their beds aren’t made.

Their dishes from lunch are piled in the sink.

Their pile of toys is continuously growing on the living room floor.

The kitchen table is covered in paper and crayons from their latest art project.

But they are here. And all of these little messes are signs of that.

I am so grateful for them. I’m grateful to get to sit here and play with them and snuggle them into my body. I’m thankful I get to listen to their funny stories and hear their laughter.

They are here and my heart is full.

We’re Still Growin’!

Twenty-four-ish weeks down! This pregnancy is somehow flying and dragging by all at once. I remember at the beginning of this pregnancy thinking that when my sons were done with school I’d feel so close to my due date.. Well here I am, the last day of school with four months left and I’m wondering why on earth I thought being five months pregnant would feel so close to being nine months pregnant?

I’m very happy to report that I have some energy back! It comes in waves and when its here, I try to take full advantage of it by doing something fun with the kids, catching up on housework or working in the garden. But I still have plenty of days where all of my body wants is rest and I’m trying to respect that and not beat myself up too much about all the lazy days I’m taking. I can’t wait until we open our pool up so I can relax in the pool but at the same time be the fun mom because I’m letting the kids swim. That’ll be pretty dreamy, not gonna lie.

I’m still sick. But it gets more bearable as time moves on and I’m figuring out more and more how to cope with it all. Some days are pretty miserable and some days are super tolerable. You never know what kind of day you’ll get, but the bad days definitely make me much more grateful for the good days!

This little boy is a wiggler. He is sitting pretty low in my belly right now and I’m starting to get those bladder jabs that send you into a slight panic because you’re not sure if you’re going to wet your pants or not (TMI?). He especially loves to dance around in the evening and when I’m starting to fall asleep at night. The kicks and wiggles are such fun reminders of what’s happening inside of me. Goodness I am grateful for this journey.

Your Little One CAN Go to Disneyland Resort! (updated)

Last time I’ve posted the list of things your little ones can do in Disneyland Resort was back in 2016! And guess what? Quite a bit has changed in the park since 2016, and seeing as people ask me actually quite a bit what I suggest doing with toddlers and babies in Disney, I think its about time I update this post so when I send it off to inquiring minds, its up to date!

Let me start with this, 100% I believe that Disneyland is for ALL ages. Even teeny tiny. I live in Utah so I, unfortunately, can’t get to DLR quite as frequently as I’d like to, but we still go often. The earliest I’ve taken a baby to Disney was when my second child was two months old. If all goes according to plan, we’ll be going when Baby Brother is even younger. Its still magical. Even with teeny tiny people. So if you’re asking me for my opinion on if its worth taking your littles to Disney, my answer will ALWAYS be YES.

So lets get into this, shall we?

WHAT YOUR LITTLE ONE CAN DO IN DISNEYLAND RESORT:

DISNEYLAND:

MAIN STREET USA

  • Disneyland Railroad: This train takes you around the whole park with plenty to look at. Its a great attraction to sit and relax for a while and eat a snack. If you’re a nursing mama, this is a great spot to nurse!
  • Main Street Vehicles: These are the cars or horse-drawn street cars and carriages you see going up and down Main Street. Its another fun way to get off your feet and see Main Street in a different way. Little ones love this, and being pulled by a horse is always particularly exciting! You can also learn your horses name, which hangs in the carriage it pulls.

TOMORROWLAND

  • Astro Orbiter: This is basically the Dumbo ride, but in a rocket. To little ones, its exhilarating and exciting.
  • Buzz Lightyear Astro Blasters: A fun ride with bright, glowing colors and fun sounds. Weather your little one can shoot the blaster or not, its a fun one for them. They also tend to enjoy controlling the direction your vehicle turns.
  • Monorail: There are stops for the monorail in a few spots in DLR, but we’ll cover it here. Its cool, out of the sun, another great nursing spot and little ones looking out the window at a unique aerial view of Disney.
  • Finding Nemo Submarine Voyage: This is a long, unique ride. You board a submarine, take your seat and peer out your own personal window at Nemo’s world under the sea. Its a lot of fun and there is so much to look at.

FANTASYLAND

  • Alice in Wonderland: A bright, exciting ride that takes you through Alice’s story. Its both indoors and outdoors and you get to ride in a cute, colorful caterpillar.
  • Casey Jr. Circus Train: An outdoor ride with sights and sounds galore. All the cars are different and provide a slightly different riding experience. Our personal favorites are the cage-like cars.
  • Dumbo the Flying Elephant: Everyone knows this one, right? Its iconic and something so many people associate with Disney, so little ones get so excited about it. You ride in Dumbo and fly around in circles. Your little one will adore it.
  • Small World: If I could only recommend one ride for you and your little one to enjoy while at Disney, this would be it. Its a fairly long ride, its bright and colorful, its happy and the song is fun (right?!).
  • King Arthurs Carousel: Its your typical carousel on brightly colored horses with great music and sights. My kids always gravitate toward this ride.
  • Mad Tea Party: The teacups always spin, but if you don’t manually spin them, they don’t go nearly as fast which can make for a fun and more tame ride for your little partner.
  • Mr. Toads Wild Ride: A short little indoor ride in a cute little car with a wheel to steer and plenty to look at.
  • Peter Pans Flight: Another classic much like Dumbo. You ride in a pirate ship suspended in the air and fly over London and Neverland. If you ask me, its a must do.
  • Pinnochio’s Daring Journey: A ride very comparable to Mr. Toads – a fun one.
  • Snow White’s Enchanted Wish: This ride has been updated from Snow White’s Scary Adventure and is much more child-friendly now. Again, similar to Mr. Toad and Pinnochio. Even better things to look at.
  • Storybook Land Canal Boats: You ride an adorable boat while a Cast Member gives you a magical guided tour around Storybook Land where you’ll see Princess castles, Monstro the whale and lots more.

TOONTOWN

  • Gadgets Go-Coaster: A children’s rollercoaster thats a lot of fun – there is still a heigh requirement here, 35 inches, its just a lot shorter than the usual rollercoasters.
  • Rodger Rabbits Car Toon Spin: A ride through Rodger Rabbits story – and your car spins!
  • You can meet Mickey and many of his friends in Toontown, too, as well as tour the Fab 5’s houses.

FRONTIERLAND

  • Mark Twain Riverboat: Its the huge white boat out in Rivers of America. Its a fun ride to sit and snack, nurse or sight-see and people watch.

CRITTER COUNTRY

  • The Many Adventures of Winnie the Pooh: Board a beehive and ride through the Hundred Acre Woods to go on an adventure with Pooh Bear and all his friends.

NEW ORLEANS SQUARE

  • Haunted Mansion: This gets a wrap for being a scary ride. Smaller babies don’t seem to care that its ‘scary’ and its possible your LO will be a little frightened, but I know from experience that you can talk your child through it and help them realize its only pretend scary. Try and give it a shot if your little buddy will let you.
  • Pirates of the Caribbean: There are two smallish drops on this ride, but considering a teeny tiny baby could still ride this, that tells you its not too dramatic. This is another that may seem a little scary, but is likely more exciting and has lots to look at.

ADVENTURELAND:

  • Enchanted Tiki Room: This is a show where you get to sit and listen to the birdies sing, chant and thoroughly entertain you. Its bright, loud and lots of fun. Another good spot to nurse.
  • Jungle Cruise: A cruise through the jungle with a  hilarious Skipper and lots of animals (and the backside of water!) to look at. Super exciting for a little one!

CALIFORNIA ADVENTURE:

  • Little Mermaid’s Undersea Adventure: One of my personal favorites. You ride in a big sea shell and basically go through the movie, Little Mermaid. It is bright with so much to look at and there are songs throughout the whole ride.
  • Red Car Trolley: This is the Trolley that rides on tracks around Buena Vista Street. Its a fun way to sit and let your little one look around.
  • Disney Junior – Live on Stage: Ok, its not a ride but I had to mention this one. Its a bunch of the Disney Junior shows on stage! If you have little ones (especially ones who love Disney Junior) then this is an absolute must.
  • Monsters Inc. Mike and Sulley to the Rescue: A fun ride through Monstroplois. Its short, air-conditioned and bright. The outside of this ride is an awesome photo op too, by the way.
  • Golden Zephyr: Soar around in a spaceship! Its fun, spins and is something a little different for the kids.
  • Inside Out Emotional Whirlwind: Do you remember Flik’s Flyers in Bugs Land? This is it! No really. Its the same ride, just repurposed. Ride in a cute Inside Out themed bucket around and around.
  • Jessie’s Critter Carousel: Quite possibly the cutest carousel ever. Woody’s Roundup animals are all together for you to ride on in the most adorably themed carousel.
  • Mickey’s PhilharMagic: A fun 3D show featuring Donald Duck popping in and out of different Disney movies.
  • Toy Story Midway Mania: Ok, admittedly this rides a little rough for some little ones. There is some fast and jolty spinning, but I’ve taken small babies on this and its been just fine. Lots to look at – and its indoors.
  • Pixar Pal Around: A big, fun ferris wheel! You have the option of a swinging gondola or a non-swinging one. It gives a great view of California Adventure and for me, its an excellent time to breast feed (and sometimes not have to fully cover up!)
  • WEB Slingers: I. Love. This. Ride. So. Much. I love that all ages can enjoy it. Go on an adventure with Spider-Man, himself, and help him destroy the rampant Spider-Bots by slinging your very own webs! Seriously, the greatest.

So there you have it, friends! An updated list just proving there is so much for little ones to do in Disneyland Resort! And these are only the attractions – there is still so much more! Parades! Fireworks! Shops! Shows! The list could go on..

I hope this is helpful! You’re all amazing and lovely and magical!

Its a…..

BOY!!!!

We are so excited and honestly, so surprised! Most people close to us guessed this baby was a girl, and our whole family, except Emmett, had all guessed girl, too! But this little boy was proud to show off exactly what he was haha. Honestly, I don’t know why we ever decided to guess against what Emmett was guessing. He called that I was pregnant before even I knew. There have been several instances where Emmett and this babies connection have been very evident, so why on earth did I not guess boy, too? Of course he was right!!

Having another sweet little boy in our family is going to be so much fun!! We feel so grateful and this just feels so comfortable and lovely. What an exciting time!!

Now if only time could move just a little faster!

Lately..

Hi, friends!

Gosh its been forever. But the break has been good. Pregnancy really kicks my booty. I’m still feeling so nauseous and throw up frequently and though some energy has come back, I definitely don’t have it all yet (will I ever?) and also chasing around three energetic little kids…oh boy. Its all a lot. I’m not complaining though! This is all I’ve ever wanted. I love my people and in the long run, I know that I’ll miss this pregnancy someday and I mean, nine months isn’t thaaaaaat long (but it does feel like eternities when you’re in it).

We are so happy to have peeks of warmer weather lately. Its like pool season is just around the corner and I can’t wait! This is truly one of the most beautiful times of the year and I love being able to experience it all with my kids and taking them out to explore it all. We’re currently in the middle of Spring Break where we decided to stay home but do something fun each day (so far its consisted of the zoo and the dinosaur museum) and its been a blast!

I’m sure hoping to be here more often. But ultimately I’m a mom and my kids, husband and my health take the front seat – so sometimes that means the blog is put on hold for a while. But at least right now, I just feel ready! Sooooo hopefully see you again soon!!

SURPRISE!

TA-DA!!

We have been keeping an exciting little secret for the last several weeks and I’m overjoyed to be able to share this news with you!! A sweet little baby will be joining our family later this year! Our fourth baby! I’m feeling so, so grateful. This is my second rainbow baby, and this little one has already calmed, healed and helped my heart in so, so many ways.

I think the best part of all of this is just how excited my boys are for this baby. They’ve known for a few weeks now (and have done a great job at keeping it secret) and are so beyond excited. Its precious! It gets me all teary-eyed just thinking about the great love they already have for this little one.

As far as myself, I’ve been feeling very…well, pregnant. I’m sick and throwing up way more than I care to admit. I’m super weak and get dizzy pretty easy. I have no motivation. Like, maybe lately its kinda-sorta trying to come back for a few minutes at a time, but for the most part, my energy is at a big ol’ 0. BUT its hard to complain when I know I’m getting the great honor of having another sweet baby.

Its an exciting time, friends!! Thanks for being here for it all!

The Slow, Happy Start to 2022

Oh, hey! Its been a while, hasn’t it? I’m not going to lie, I just haven’t been in the headspace lately to really keep up on my blog. Even Instagram, which I really love, hasn’t been my favorite for the last couple of months. Just sometimes things come easy and sometimes things don’t, you know? So I decided not to force anything. If I felt inspired to blog, I was going to – but clearly, it never happened.

BUT I’m starting to feel the itch to do this all actively again. Its exciting! I’m glad I gave myself the break. It felt good and it felt right. Now it feels good and right to be back.

2022 has started off really slowly for me. I was comparing the beginning of this year to the beginning of 2021 for me, and wow it has been different. In 2021 I started off strong and so determined to put my health first. I was a powerhouse. I was crushing goals. I was feeling so ambitious and motivated. It was awesome. For 2022, I made the decision not to set a whole lot of goals/resolutions at the beginning of the year. I’m not sure why exactly, because its so unlike me, but again, it just felt right in the time. I just decided to focus on my family, myself and putting service at the forefront of our minds. Its been nice. I’ve felt a lot less pressure. I’ve figured out how to be grateful for each small moment. I’ve learned that I have accomplishments all the time, they’re just small. Accomplishments don’t have to be massive and monumental. Its been really good for me.

My family and I have had a really good year so far. Admittedly, I think we are all looking forward to warmer weather a bit, but even still, life is good (and the snow is so stinkin’ pretty). I’m not entirely sure what this year will look like. Like I’ve said, for the first time in a long time, I don’t have these milestones I’m working towards. I’m just taking every day in stride and enjoying it all.

Life is good. I am happy. I hope you, my friends, are as well!

Part of the Club

It isn’t a club I wanted to join. Its one I prayed so hard that I’d be lucky enough to somehow avoid all my life. But, despite all of my best wishes, its one I’m a part of now. I’ve actually been a part of this ‘club’ for a couple years now. I miscarried recently this year, but I also had a miscarriage in 2019.

I stayed silent about my first one. I was embarrassed and ashamed. I didn’t want the pity or the sympathy. I didn’t want people to bring it up with me because I wasn’t sure how I was ‘supposed‘ to handle it. I didn’t know if I’d burst into tears, get angry, or feel peace. I just didn’t even want to try and see what would happen. So I said nothing. I locked it up. For a while it was ok, but I realized I felt so isolated and alone in my miscarriage, and it was all because I chose to keep it a secret. Somehow it made it all worse.

So this time I’m choosing to just say it. I had a miscarriage. Again. And it sucked really bad. It still does. But I don’t want to feel alone this time. I also don’t want the pity, but I’d rather risk it than feel so alone, again.

I know I’m not alone. Miscarriages happen all the time. They’re unfortunately so common. They’re a tragic loss. The second you find out you’re pregnant, your babies whole life flashes before your eyes. You visualize everything about them. You start daydreaming about who they’ll be. You love them like your other children. So then, when you find out you don’t get to keep that baby here on earth…its gut wrenching. Its terrible. Its awful. Its lonely.

My first miscarriage really rocked me in a lot of spiritual ways. It took a long time to get back to where I am now. This one, I’ve found, has been a lot more of a mental trial. Its just hard. Then there’s the fact that for some reason I still look barely pregnant… Its like salt in the wound.

I’m trying to have a positive attitude. But I’m also mourning the loss of my child and the person they could have been here on earth. I’m missing them. I’m sad that I had to lose them and had no control over the situation. I’m disappointed. I’m confused. I’m sad.

But the one thing I keep reminding myself of is the rainbows that follow storms.

Flora is my first rainbow baby. She saved my soul and filled me with joy. I one hundred percent believe that I will get my second rainbow. I know it will be ok. I know I will be ok. But I also know healing takes time, and some things we’ll just never fully understand in this life.

I fully believe that Heavenly Father has a plan for me and my family. I believe that the babies I’ve lost are under His watchful care and I believe He allows them to know just how much their earthly mother loved them. I believe I will see them on the other side. I believe they’re ok. I believe they’re with our family.

I’m not sure how to wrap this post up. I just had to be sure I didn’t lock myself up this time around and make myself feel even more lonely than this already can feel. I’m in the club. Reluctantly, but a two-time member, now. If you’re in the same situation, I’m here to talk. I don’t know if I have any advice, and I certainly don’t have words to fix it for you, but I have ears to listen and a heart to feel for you. I’m here for you. And I’m sorry if you know the same feelings that I do, but lets feel it together.

New Year Hot Take

I’m doing something so out of the ordinary for me this new year. Part of me honestly hates it, but even more of me thinks that it’ll feel really good. So I’m doing it for me! What is this ‘thing,’ you ask? New Years Resolutions. I’m not doing any this year.

The goals I have this year are the same goals I’ve had for myself the last several years as a human/wife/mother. But I’m not really setting any specific 2022 goals. I just want to focus on being a good person and making good choices. I want to keep working on my word of the year and focus on serving others. I just want to focus on the good things I’ve got going instead of having a list of things to work on, thus making me feel like I’m not ‘perfect’ yet (don’t worry – I know perfect is unattainable, I just couldn’t think of a better word). I’m going to give myself grace, patience and love. I’m going to encourage myself to be a good, motivated person that works towards my dreams, takes care of myself and my family and just feels good about what’s happening around me in my corner of the world.

So I guess my resolution this year is to not have and focus on them.

Word of 2022

One of my favorite things to do at the beginning of each year is to assign my year a word. In the past I’ve had words like, ‘Home’ and ‘Secure.’ Every word I’ve picked has been something that I’m really proud of and a word I’ve really worked on getting better at/cultivating/etc. I put a lot of thought into my words and don’t take them lightly throughout the year.

In the later part of 2021 I started thinking about what my new word would be. Around this same time I started to really get the pull and strong urges that I need to be more giving and serve more. I felt like I have worked so hard on myself in 2021 and now in 2022 I need to look toward others and be a help and a better friend. We also have a quote that sits on our mantle that has really resonate with me in the past year that says, “Search Inward, Reach Outward, Look Heavenward” (Thomas S. Monson) Between the urges I’ve had to serve more, and this quote that I can’t quit reading and saying in my head, my word came to me pretty easily.

My word for 2022 is

In 2022, I am going to look outward and be better at serving and showing my love for those around me. I don’t have a huge plan for this word yet. In all honesty, I plan to just listen to my gut and let it and the spirit guide me to whoever I need to help. I plan to really help my kids catch the bug to look outward as well and hope I can inspire them to serve and love openly as well.

I’m really excited for this word and for the possibilities of places it will take our family. I feel so good and eager for this and plan to bring you guys along on our OUTWARD journey throughout the year as well, so stay tuned!!

If you’ve picked a word for the year, I would LOVE to hear it!! Let me know!

Love you all. I hope your New Year is lovely and I hope you know you’ve got a friend in me.