Motherhood

On the day I return to work

On the day I return to work

My dear Theo, 

Things may seem different today. You do not have a concept of time quite yet, but you may feel that things are different. You may be wondering where I am or why I’m missing from your day. Well sweet boy, I have returned to my work outside the home. At home, I take care of you and your big sister and brother, but at work I take care of other people who need me. It is important work, I think. But I want you to know, raising you and your siblings is the most important work I’ll ever do, the most important thing I’ll ever do.

I want you to know that I love what I do outside the home too. I love taking care of my patients and making them smile. I hope I am part of, however small that part is, improving their quality of life. I hope they feel that I care and that I empathize and that I want to be a partner in care with them.

I also want to show you, Emma, and Henry that you can use those qualities God has given you to help others and be uniquely able to improve the lives of others by your own special gifts. I have felt called to care for this population of patients and I hope one day you answer whatever call God puts on your heart.

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Three's company too

Three's company too

Before I say anything, I’d like to give a huge shout out to those of you who take care of little ones at home each day. You’re my heroes. Working outside the home is hard, working in the home is hard, staying home all day with littles is hard, staying away from home all day is hard. Parenting is hard and I just think you are all doing the best you can.

Starting this week, the big kids will be staying home Tuesdays and Wednesdays each week. We wanted to save a bit of childcare money while Paul is home with Theo for two months. So I had all three littles for a couple days this week. It was simultaneously incredibly exhausting and extremely entertaining. It was constant movement and diapers and meal times and staggered nap times and meltdowns and dancing and playtime and errands and chaos and pure bliss.

I have been an emotional mess this week leading up to my return to work this coming Monday. But spending uninterrupted time with my sweet babies — in all the crazy, beautiful chaos — has been just what I needed. Here’s a photo and video dump for memory’s sake. Hand me the tissues.

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Here we are

Here we are

It’s happening. I am attempting to sleep train Theo. Currently on this Monday night, I am hiding on the couch in the dark trying not to let him smell me (those infants have the noses of blood hounds for that breastmilk). My bff Grace gave Theo a Merlin’s Magic Sleep Suit (google it) for Christmas and I am attempting its magic. For both Emma and Henry we failed (read: currently failing) miserably at sleep training. In fact, Paul is laying down with Henry in his bed because he still cannot fall asleep alone.

So this is me, a 29 year-old mom to three kids under five. I’m hiding in the dark living room trying not to make any noise (and praying my typing is not too loud) and listening for the baby to fall asleep in his crib alone.

Ope, just heard him crying. Let’s see if he self-soothes or if I have to go back in there.

Okay, I did have to go in there but I cuddled him for about two minutes and put him back down. Guys, this may work (she says as she holds her breath, crosses her fingers, makes a sign of the cross, throws salt over her shoulder, makes a wish on a birthday candle, breaks a wish bone in half, douses crib in holy water).

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Theo at three months

Theo at three months

So we survived the holiday hoopla, yay! And Theophilus turns three months old today, double yay! This has been an eventful last month. Theo has made many developmental leaps and his little personality is blossoming. Mostly, he is a happy baby that occasionally howls at us when he is tired. I go back to work in a little over a week so I will be focused on pumping and building a freezer supply of the good stuff for our hungry, hungry Theo.

Speaking of hungry, Theo is an excellent eater. He is easily satisfied with five minutes at the tap before wanting to play again. Over our holiday travels, we practiced with the bottle and he seems to bet getting it, THANK THE GOOD LORD. I know how lucky we are that he’ll take the bottle so far. Hopefully he keeps it up when it’s just Paul and him.

His favorite activities include eating (obvi), playing with his sister and brother, and sucking on his hands. He is thiiiiis close to finding that thumb, so wish him luck. He laughed for the first time just before Christmas and it is the most beautiful sound in the world. Emma tries to get him laughing on the daily and their interactions completely melt me and make me want 20 more babies (HOLD ME BACK).

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State of the Hive

State of the Hive

In honor of the new year, I thought I would write a family update. I am grateful for our health and for our cozy home on our little island. 2018 was full of big changes, events, and surprises. I know I am looking forward to the year ahead — with all its ups and downs, family, friends, and faith. I present to you the State of the Hive Address


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