Months 2, 3, 4, 5?

Well… I had in my head that I was 2 months behind on Emily Grace posts, but it turns out… I have done one total, and she is 5 months old.  Poor second child.  Emily Grace, this does not mean we love you any less.  It just means life is C-RAZY.  So here’s a quick update, 4 months later.


Emily is fantastic. Emily has been sleeping through the night for months now, which definitely makes the husband and I feel much more like real humans. She is a very chill, relaxed child, who loves to chatter at whoever will listen.  She loves to smile at you, and she has the cutest most kissable cheeks.  But, you know, I might (maybe just maybe) be biased.


Taylor is OBSESSED.  I expected (especially since we were smack dab in the middle of the “MINE” phase when Emily Grace was born, that we would have some jealousy issues and resentment.  I’ve heard many a funny story about older siblings wanting to ‘return’ their younger siblings.  And so far, there have been none.  In fact, quite humorously, if you tell Taylor that she is my Emily Grace, Taylor will respond with an emphatic… “NO, MY Emily Grace”.  And speaking of the Emily Grace instead of Emily, we fluctuate back and forth, but Taylor is the one who started calling her Emily Grace with regularity.  Apparently any time a child cried at school, Taylor would perk up and say “Oh, Emily Grace is crying”, even when it wasn’t, in fact, Emily Grace.



We are starting to give her solid foods, although with those adorable cheeks and chunky thighs, she is definitely NOT starving, she is unsure whether she likes this whole REAL FOOD thing.



We’ve been through our first Halloween, Thanksgiving and Christmas as a family of four, and while having 2 kids under three (while working two more than full time jobs) is definitely insane, we wouldn’t have it any other way.


We got to visit lots of family over Christmas, both in Dallas and Denver.  Emily got to meet her two living Great Grandparents and a whole lot of cousins, Great Aunts and Uncles and got to spend time with lots of Aunts and Uncles.  It was a great holiday!

She spends a lot of time hanging on her mat, she has learned to roll over– both from front to back and back to front. She loves sucking her thumb and watching Lexie.  We are absolutely in love with this little Peanut (which earned her the nickname “Little P”).


Christmas at the New Place

This year has flown by so fast that I still feel like we just moved in, even though it was really more than 8 months ago! But your first Christmas in any house is always a bit of a trick to figure out where your decorations fit best… and even more importantly… WHERE DOES YOUR TREE GO!??! Some houses have an obvious place (i.e. in front of your beautiful picture window) but ours… not so much.  In fact, I don’t think our house has a place for a tree at all!! But we scootched around some tables and seemed to have made it work.  And I’m so pleased with the way the house turned out, that I thought I’d share it with you all! Christmas with Amusing MJ |

The tree ended up going in the nook on the way to Taylor’s bedroom, and I love that she stops to look at it as she wanders back and forth into her room (it also DEFINITELY means that the only ornaments on the bottom 2 feet of the tree are toddler friendly!)  If you notice in the above picture that there are only two stockings, that is because somewhere in the move, Taylor’s stocking is MIA.  So I kinda need to get on ordering her a new one.  HOWEVER, my sister-in-law bought her two giant Santa sacks from Pottery Barn last year, so we may end up using that  for the year.

Christmas with Amusing MJ |

I love these two metal reindeer, I think from Crate and Barrel a few years back, but they look super cute standing at attention on my breakfast table.

Christmas with Amusing MJ |

And then my nativities that I have decorating our space this year.  The one in the upper right hand corner is hand carved in the Holy Land, which was a gift from my grandmother, and the bottom is just a Willow Tree nativity, but I love the simplicity of it.  It has always been a favorite of mine.  If you are new around here, you might be interested to know that my mom has a nativity collection that numbers somewhere in the 300+ range that she decorates with every year.  If you want to read the posts about it, I have written about her Swedish Christmas decor, her vast nativity collection, and the weirdest ones she has (including ducks and moose).

We did discover that our house is too tall to reach safely even with our largest ladder (thank you basements in Kansas), so after calling around to a few professionals and figuring out that it is 1. too late for that and 2. too expensive, we decided just to wrap our lovely evergreen, add a few lighted wreaths to our front window and a wreath to the door and call it good.  We at least don’t look like Scrooge.   Christmas with Amusing MJ

The above photo was taken before the addition of the Santa Bow to my evergreen wreath–speaking of– did you know that some boy scout troops (at least the one based out of our church) sell evergreen wreaths shipped fresh from the pacific northwest for pretty cheap?  I love how the fresh wreath looks and it smells UNBELIEVABLE!!

Christmas with Amusing MJ

And we definitely got in the spirit of Christmas last week because I attended a Christmas ornament and cookie exchange party, so I whipped up some gingerbread cookies from my favorite food blogger (Gimme Some Oven) and they made the whole house smell delicious!

Christmas with Amusing MJ |

So it is the first week of December and I’ve made my first batch of Christmas cookies, wrapped a few presents, decorated the house, and remembered to take pictures and blog about it… So I’m feeling a bit like superwoman these days.  Oh and I did it all with a nasty cold.  #winning


Here is to a wonderful advent, a magical Christmas and a Happy New Year!

Saying Goodbye to my House

Pardon me while I write a completely personal and extremely sentimental post.

I am sitting in my house, surrounded by boxes that the movers packed up yesterday  (when they showed up a day early… eek!!) and I have a plethora of emotions running through my head.  But it occurs to me that even though we have lived in this house only a year, it is home. I have LOVED this house. In just one short year I have a ton of memories from here. I want to remember those memories, and cherish them.  So I’m going to share them with you all.   frontofhouse

First and foremost I love that it is where we brought Taylor home for the first time.  I remember walking to the front door in utter and complete exhaustion, my body being weak and in pain from the surgery, but elated at coming home with my husband and daughter.

I do not want to forget the nights sitting around in my living room with my small group. Small group sounds so cliche and shallow for the strength and depth of these friendships.  Those nights are how I have survived this year. Their friendship, their support, their food, their love, their wisdom… they are as much a part of me as anyone else.

I want to remember floating in the pool on a hot summer day… 9 months pregnant and loving every second of the cool water and floating.   outdoorfurniture1

I want to remember the two Christmases we had in this house, our last as just my husband and me and the other Taylor’s first Christmas and Reese’s few short days home during training.  I always feel extra emotional during Christmas with the traditions and beautiful church services, but these two have felt extra special.  Both years we have had a huge family dinner with my parents, my brother and sister-in-law and my sister-in-laws family.  And those are exactly what Christmas dinners should be… endless stories, loud laughter, good natured-teasing and a whole lot of love. Coral and Gray Nursery |

I don’t want to forget my baby shower- a room full of friends who love my little girl.  I still look up at my wall of alphabet letters that they all made for me and think about the love they have for Taylor and me.  I am so lucky to have women like that in my world.    housetourlivingroom1

There are tons of little memories that have happened over the last year, but those are the big ones.  And as I watch all my material possessions being loaded on a truck, I have to tell myself that the house is not what makes the memories.  It is the people and the life lived inside.  I will love my next house, as I loved this one;  but for now, I’ll shed a few tears that this chapter of my life is ending and I’m starting a whole new one.

So I’m doing a little grieving today for this house that I love and the life that has been lived inside its walls.