Jul 11, 2017

And then she was one.

Almost a month ago we celebrated Cora's 1st birthday!
Time is such a funny thing- to be honest, I was really looking forward to her becoming one. Not that I wanted to wish her babyhood away, but the previous six months had been rough and I was more than ready to hit an "older" milestone. Between night wakings (that were increasing instead of decreasing!), so much teething, and several rounds of  respiratory sickness, I felt continually exhausted and just couldn't see the light at the end of the tunnel. She is no longer nursing and is now sleeping through the night- Hallelujah!

Over the last couple of months she has started standing on her own and cruising, babbles a lot, and her personality has become so big- it's amazing how fast babies change! I feel like overnight she switched to almost-toddler mode and now everything is moving so quickly.
(For example: she hadn't been able to scale the second stair of our sunken family room until one day a week or so ago. A few days after that she scaled the entire flight of stairs to the second floor while I was busy with the older three- God is so good to give us Guardian Angels!!!)


She really has been such a jolly and sweet little babe. She loves her pacifier and being sung to. When Tim comes home after being gone at work she fusses if he doesn't immediately pick her up. For (what felt like) the longest time she wasn't interested in solids until one day she was! Same thing with her bath- she wasn't a fan for the first several months but it was like a switch flipped and now when she hears the bath water she makes a beeline for the tub. She is our first to seek out open toilets and splash away (oh child, if only you knew how gross). She has a penchant for reaching for everything on my dresser and nightstand- and promptly tossing it on the floor. When she smiles really big she has the toothiest grin and I can hardly handle it! She loves diving into soft things and giggling while being tickled and "caught".  Her eight-year-old cousin M loves to hold her and it so sweet to see that bond spanning the age gap. If she's getting into something she shouldn't and Tim or I use an admonishing tone she starts fussing and sometimes bursts into tears- all I can say is: temperaments!

On her actual birthday we opened presents, and I went all out with store bought cupcakes. ;) And I inadvertently picked up a gluten-free pack.
But she loved it!

We had some family over for a little party the next day. Evie and Audrey were occupied all morning not cleaning their room, so Heidi got to be my cake decorator helper. :)

It was so precious- when cake and singing time came she suddenly became shy and clung to my sister, wanting to be held.
We love you, Cora Juliette, and hope you had the happiest of first years!

Jun 25, 2017

Life Lately {July} 7QT

Hitting publish after the nth day of working on these - linking up with Kelly better late than never!

1.
It's been a week!
On Monday Audrey was sick and the only available doctor's appointment was an evening one at an office forty minutes away. At the last minute I brought Heidi with me since she had the same symptoms (high-ish fever, sore throat). On the way Heidi got sick to her stomach which is never pleasant but in a car seat it is a most, most unfortunate event. 
At the office both girls had their throats swabbed buuut when it was Heidi's turn it triggered her gag reflex and whatever was left inside her stomach emptied out onto my left thigh and the floor.
The poor girls were traumatized by the swabbing and after all that I was hoping we could at least leave with the promise of antibiotics, but the strep tests were negative and the diagnosis was acute viral pharyngitis (?!?). Thankfully they both recovered rather quickly!

2.
The week before last was a full week for us- Audrey finished up preschool:

3.
Evie graduated from Kindergarten:
When is it that they graduate to normal smiles in photos?
 4.
And Cora turned one!
.....

Next year Audrey will be in pre-K at our parish school (same as Evie). I'm just really grateful for both schools; both girls had kind, attentive teachers that we'll miss.
In Audrey's preschool class this year were two other classmates from our Catholic community (one with whom the girls share cousins) and Evie has several classmates whose parents we've/ I've known for a good while...the Catholic world is big and small at the same time, you know?

5.
With different sizes and seasons at play not every piece of baby clothing gets worn by each girl, but I realized all four girls have worn the same pink swimsuit! I couldn't find a picture of Heidi wearing the top but here they are:

6.
So, I mentioned a while back on my Etsy shop's Instagram account that when we were in Hawaii I went thrifting at the Salvation Army (that a friend and I visited some eleven years ago to buy souvenir muumuus, haha!) and found some vintage pieces to list. Well, funnily enough a customer in Honolulu ended up buying one of the dresses- from Hawaii to Virginia and back again! What are the chances?!
 7.
After browsing Etsy for a while last month I went ahead and bought this vintage embroidered top for $26:

The fit is a little large but I decided I would make do.
Until I came across this one at Goodwill for five bucks that fit just fine! I'm going to try listing the one above on eBay (*if* anyone's interested in it just let me know (fits like a large)- my plan is to sell it for what I paid for it).

That's all for now! Hope you had a good weekend!

Jun 14, 2017

The Week of Shark Teeth and Engagements {Topsail 2017}

In the month of May we had three Urgent Care visits, one ER trip, and one Lyme disease scare, so a week at the beach Memorial Day week was a welcome respite to all of the sickness! We went to Topsail Island, North Carolina with my family- the water and the weather were on the cooler side at times but we had a great week together.
My sister and BIL drove up from Florida and brought some plumeria blooms from the trees she grows!
Pool time was a little tricky with Cora since the water was too cold for her and she wasn't a huge fan of hanging out in the baby pool by herself. Oh well. Every year is different!
Our family has been to Topsail twenty-something summers and never have we ever found shark teeth like we did this year. We've always found lots of tiny fossilized ones and even some that were sharp and not super worn down from the surf, however this year so many big ones turned up! It was addicting to comb the beach in search of them. My oldest nephew had fun identifying which kinds were from which sharks. 
Audrey was the proud finder of the one below. :)
I found the first two (Great Whites) in the picture below and one of my sisters found that huge one on our last day! One of my other sisters found a lot of large ones as well. We were very glad to be the ones finding the teeth and not the other way around...
I have to admit it's a little hard for me to let go of going to all the places we've always gone when we come here because, tradition! I made peace with the fact that vacation with four little kids looks different, and it's time to start new Topsail customs.
One morning all six of us went to the local bakery and the girls excitedly picked out treats to bring back. They also had fun visiting the "treasure store" with cousins and picking out something to take home (Heidi chose a little ball- bless her!). And we made it to the old school ice cream shop (for lunch only but still!) during the day which makes so much more sense than trying to scramble everyone into cars after dinner and running into a late, cranky bedtime...
SUCH delicious donuts (PS- there are no calories on vacation)
I loved this moment when Cora grabbed a bucket of shells and started fishing them out and putting them in her mouth. I handed her some Terra chips to try and dissuade her from her inedible snack; instead she just alternated chips and sandy shells, as you do at the beach.
A priest family friend spent the week with us and I think he was amused by my sister and brother-in-law's efforts to figure out the new priest assignments for our diocese which came out that week. You know you're Catholic when...
 
Cora discovered a new flavor of Cheez-It: White Cheddar Sand
Yum! Extra gritty.
I was walking on the beach with Cora in the Ergo just as this storm was rolling in. I kept delaying turning around when the thunder started, thinking it wasn't coming our way until- nope- it most definitely was! I so wished I had my camera out there because it was unreal watching all the different clouds moving out over the ocean. And it was crazy how fast the beach cleared out and how quickly the wind picked up.
It even hailed, then cleared out enough so that...
my brother was able to propose to his girlfriend on a beach walk later that evening!
None of us knew anything about it until a few minutes before they left, when my brother (all alone) nonchalantly dropped a hint to a few family members about a bottle of champagne that was chilling  in the fridge. On the spur of the moment, one of my BILs set off after them with his long-range camera lens and- keeping a good distance- captured the moment on camera.
The newly engaged were good sports about seeing a horde of people spying from the top deck with binoculars, waiting for their return. What else is a big family to do? :)

The next day Evie (who was asleep during the engagement) was kind enough to fill me in on the news:
 "MOM, were you there for the blessing after mass? Did you hear the word wedding? GUESS who's getting married??"

And then a few days later my youngest brother and his girlfriend got engaged! It's been an exciting, memorable time, and especially fun to witness the excitement of our girls and their cousins. It's also amusing having to remind the kids that the weddings won't be taking place next week or month. ;)


Previous Topsail posts: 2016 / 2015 / 2014 / 2013
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