What's in a name?

Wednesday, November 26, 2014

We were undecided on homegirl's name for quite a while. We didn't officially decide until probably the last month of my pregnancy, and even then we weren't ready to share it publicly. 

The Mr. and I talked about this name, her name, years ago. Of course then, it was just, 'this would be an awesome little girl's name (since it holds special meaning for us..)' 


When the Mr. and I first got together, we, for the most part, shared similar taste in music. There were a few bands he loved that I didn't really care for and others that I had heard of but didn't necessarily listen to often. (Then there was my country music, that he has since come on board with, irrelevant to this story though..) I quickly was suckered into a particular artist and we decided to go see him live, it was my first concert experience and quickly became special music for our budding relationship. Each following summer following, we made sure to attend his concerts whenever he was in our state. 

His voice is unique and raw. His lyrics are real, interesting, and touching. The music he plays is simple, yet intricate and moving. Some of my favorite songs of his are just instrumental, him on his guitar. The time the Mr. and I spent together at his concerts and listening to his music are special and memorable. The Mr. has been instructed to have some of his music at my funeral. We danced our first dance as a married couple to his music. When we listen to his songs, it seems to bring a carefree and warm-fuzzy feeling over the room, and simply puts my heart at peace. 

As for her middle name, we had originally been throwing around something totally different. Once we were settling on her first name, I thought maybe a family name for a middle name to pass on (as we had done this for her big brother also..)? Why not my middle name? It was given to me. It was the middle name of one of the most special, interesting, and inspiring women I have ever met. 

My Grandma, Harriett Ann. 
Unfortunately, she never saw me marry the love of my life or welcome these perfect babes of ours into the world. She was always one of my BIGGEST fans. There are very few people that would be happier for me. She always provided selfless and endless love, support, and excitement. I hope along with the name, some of her memories can be passed along as well. 

So it was finally decided, Harper Ann.
I finally got over however popular it has become, what lists it's on or who has previously named their kid this.. It's has meaning to us. In our opinion, it's a strong and beautiful name with some special memories and meaning behind it (and rolls off big brother's tongue preciously perfect).

We created this poster for her nursery, with lyrics from a Ben Harper song. We thought this was fitting for a little girl..
'but nothing is as beautiful as when she believes'
(More from her nursery and newborn photo session coming soon..!!)

How did you decide/pick your kids' names? Any guidelines/requirements for picking a name? Are you named after someone special?

Toddler Talk

Tuesday, November 25, 2014

I asked if he would like to take his shoes off..
T: Yeah shure.

After finishing reading a book by himself..
T: The end. Ohkay. What's next?
After getting dressed..
T: Ohkay, I'had go play.

In the sweetest, melt-your-heart little voice..
T: Sawwee (sorry) guys.

Driving by Sonic on our way home after dinner with cousins..
T: We get ice-scream now?
(Yea!! For a memorable experience when we walked there for a treat this summer..) :)

My all time, reoccurring favorite thing to come out of his mouth.. 
Asking as he walks into a room or when he sees you doing something/anything.. 
T: Wh'ya doin herre?

For the sake of my 'record keeping', he's is doing great with (and seems to really love) counting/numbers. He can now count to 20, usually skipping 13-14; and can recognize and name numbers 1-10.
We've also been practicing letters - recognition, what sound they make, and a word that starts with that letter. He now sings his ABC's (or will say something that sounds like it at parts) and when asked, can pick out at least five letters from the letter magnets on the fridge. He's also done a great job with recalling letters and corresponding word (that start with that letter). It's so fun to watch him learn and catch on to these things!! We try to make it a fun thing and of course celebrate any little achievement or even attempt when practicing/playing.

Back to the bump

Monday, November 17, 2014

About a week before homegirl made her debut, we went to a local pond to snap a few 'maternity' pictures of ourselves. It's known as the duck pond so the Little was thoroughly distracted by all the ducks/geese; we of course took some time to feed them afterwards (I just won't include the pictures of him holding the bag of bread..).
These photos are special to me as the time of us as a family of three seems like it was so long ago. The time of our first baby, as our only baby, was special and perfect and such wonderful memories. When I look at these pictures, I can't believe how little he was. It's hard to imagine so much can change in less than a month. 
As always, I'm so thankful to the Mr. for capturing these pictures and moments. At 40 weeks pregnant, he somehow made me look and feel pretty. It's a neat thing to see myself through his eyes/lens.
These smiles are my favorite!!

The blog posts that never were..

Friday, November 14, 2014

Well I could just leave this post at the title.. 
The past 20+ some weeks were full of being pregnant, a (toddler) boy mom, a wifey, and staying stressed and busy at work while preparing for maternity leave. I filled my free time with family, resting, and soaking up moments with my first baby as we prepared for him to be a big brother. 
I had ideas and plans for posts, even hopes of getting some done ahead and scheduled for 'maternity leave'..

Maternity fashion/outfits
Big brother gift bag
Make-ahead/frozen meals
Family date nights
Letter to my baby girl
Fall bucket list activities
Etc. Etc. Etc.

Instead, radio silence. 
Instead, I lived and just did those things. 
I didn't get pictures done and edited or posts written and scheduled. 
I experienced them, was present, and just took part.

I guess I'm posting this to say (to myself), 
'It's OK. Give yourself a break. Enjoy the moments (and stop worrying about getting it blogged, or getting the dishes done right away, laundry finished or everything checked off your to do list).'  
Do you need those reminders too? I'm telling you, just like my mom tells me, it's OK.
Don't get me wrong, there's absolutely nothing wrong with blogging and documenting these moments/things/events, but it's not the end of the world if it doesn't get done, along with the many other things swirling around my mind and lists that need completed. 

As I figure out our new normal - life as a mother of two, being a SAHM (while on maternity leave), schedules, maintaining a sane household, and how to juggle all that I need and want to do - I'm just going to be hanging in there. Hoping to continue to document our lives and be a part of this 'community' that has been a joy for me this past year.
In the meantime, please share your suggestions and tips on how YOU do it...
Daily schedules/activities?
Keep up with blogging (posting and reading/commenting)?
Parenting a toddler/newborn?
Staying inspired? Energized? Balanced? Optimistic?
Etc.? Etc.? Etc.?

Happy Friday (and thanks for hanging in there with me)!!
Have a wonderful weekend.