A Book-Themed Baby Shower and Kindergarten...

We are back from Florida! I have about a schmillion pictures and thoughts to sort through, but fear not... I'm sure you will see them all. Now that I'm not working, I will definitely dedicate more time here. Yay. 

For now, I will backtrack to a baby shower I threw a few weeks ago. My two best friends from childhood (and still now of course), are BOTH preggers which is amazeballs (and even more amazeballs that I am NOT). The shower we hosted was for Jen who is due in September. One slightly interesting curveball I threw myself was that we went to a wedding the night before (and possibly stayed out at the bar until 2am... a night without the kids. Don't judge). We went to the lovely brunch in the morning and I was home around 10:30am and the shower started at 2pm. Shockingly, my uber-preparedness (along with the amazing help I had) paid off, and there was not even a last minute frenzy before ladies showed up. It was GREAT. 

I went with a book theme... took ideas from both pinterest, my sister, my brain, etc. All food related to children's books, so here was the menu: 

-deviled eggs and ham sandwiches (Green Eggs and Ham)
-meatballs (Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs)
-fruit salad (Very Hungry Caterpillar/The Big Hungry Bear)
-hummus cups with carrots, celery and red peppers (The Adventures of Peter Rabbit)
-pasta salad (Strega Nona)
-moon pies (Goodnight Moon)
-cookie assortment (If You Give a Mouse a Cookie) 

To make things even better, my other best friend Liz (yes, I can have several best friends) did all of the photography for the shower, so all photo credit goes to Liz Cayne Photography. Here are a few pics from the event: 


Super adorbs deviled eggs and sandwiches made my Lesley (preggers #2): 

This caterpillar head was the bane of my existence for probably an hour. I had gotten felt in the different colors and pipe cleaners from Michael's, and I had spray adhesive... but it just wasn't laying properly on the watermelon. I had to do a little strip to cover the ugliness. Oh well. I'm over it. The perfectionist inside of me isn't. 

Love my little peanut

So I always make a diaper cake for the baby showers I host. I went for the four-tier with this one and got a bunch of my favorite things/other adorableness. The one thing I never found: The Pee Pee Teepee. Since I have no experience in the baby boy diaper-changing issues, I think the little cup you put on top to prevent a nice little shower sounds perfect. Oh well. I'll find it and give it to her when she has him. 

A great shot from the balcony: 

Love them so much. Going on 20 years. 

Showers in general are of course going to bring up memories of my own shower... what I was feeling, what I was thinking, giving birth, etc. I remember being literally clueless of how this little person was going to rock my world. I know everyone says it, but you truly don't understand the love of a mother until you look your child in the eyes. Everyone says it because it is true. After I had Summer, I swear I just stared at her for hours at a time, not quite believing that she was the little alien doing flips inside of me not too long ago. If anyone missed my Summerism from the other day, we were having mommy/Summer time eating ice cream and doing our nails (Rainbow stripes. Two colors per nail, in the ROY G BIV rotation. Obvi). As I was going to do a neutral on my nails and grey on my toes, Summer says to me: "Mom, why don't you do fun, crazy colors on your nails?" 
My response: "Well sweets, I guess I'm just a little boring with nail colors." 
Summer: "You're not boring! You're the funnest mom I've ever had! I mean mom, you gave birth to me. That's awesome in my world." 

1. I switched my toe color to pink with sparkles on top. 
2. I really wonder what she thinks "giving birth" is. I am so not asking. 

Well, that little alien in my belly started kindergarten this week, which I just truly can't believe. I hadn't been stressed out about kindergarten, but I finally realized why... which actually amped up my anxiety this week. I was homeschooled until 9th grade (fun fact), so kindergarten, taking the bus, homework folders, all of that is completely foreign to me. When she got on that bus today, it was like I was sending my little girl into this world I was completely clueless about. That's the only thing I really hated... And the fact that I really missed her all day. 

She showered and wore mommy's robe until she was done with breakfast and brushing her teeth (so as to ensure nothing got on her new kitty dress): 

Hair was "loosely curled at the ends" per kindergartener's specific requests. I talked her out of wearing her new wedges (I mean, seriously): 

Such a big girl: 

Starting to get a little nervous: 

A quick family pic: 

I am BEYOND happy that all of the older neighborhood kids took her under their wing: 

So that was that, and she was just... gone. I did not cry. I just felt sort of sick. Yes, this is melodramatic but just wait until you just send off your little five year old into the real world with older mean kids and craziness. What completely settled me was not just one, but TWO friends of mine who walk their kids to school saw her getting off the bus and in line waiting for the bell (Summer. Waiting for a school bell. I mean, this boggles my mind how fast this went). They both texted me informing me that she was all smiles and gave them big hugs. This is the pic one friend captured as she got off the bus: 

She came home happy, tired, excited, talking about her new friend, and with a giant folder filled with a schillion forms for me to fill out. I finally finished the forms, but I can't believe we have to do this EVERY DAY! 

Happy Tuesday!! 


A Big Decision...

My deepest apologies for being MIA lately. I had the bachelorette weekend two weekends ago, went to a wedding last Saturday and hosted a baby shower this past Sunday. The bachelorette weekend was epic in so many ways (which I won't get into). The feeling I had leaving was it was cray cray that 15 different girls could all get along and have such an amazeballs time despite a few insane events (including an ambulance). The wedding this past weekend was absolutely fabulous. The food was to die for, the dancing was awesome, and the bride and groom brought tears to my eyes on several occasions. The baby shower went great (pictures to come later). All in all, it has been a fun and busy few weeks. Oh, I forgot one small detail... I quit my job.

So I have been pretty unhappy at work for a while. Without going into too much detail... you know the work environment is bad when you would rather spend time with inmates than some of your bosses and co-workers. In addition to dealing with a soul-sucking environment, more hours than I wanted to work, a long commute, and the stress of figuring out childcare... I have been having a really hard time with the age-old mommy guilt. Summer has definitely been taking it the hardest. Her comments like, "Mommy I feel like I never see you anymore," "It isn't like it used to be," "Why do you have to work, why can't you stay home with us," were just daggers. I felt like whenever I was home I was just cleaning up after everyone, trying to plan for the next day, running errands, etc. I was constantly pulled in every direction at all times, and I was burning the candle at both ends. Someone always needed me, and I was headed for a mental breakdown. Okay I lied. I actually did have several mental breakdowns. 

Last Thursday, something happened at work that was my tipping point. When I got home after a ridiculously exhausting day, Matt and I had a long talk. Pretty much... our girls, my happiness/sanity, our relationship... these things are far more important than extra money. I never felt like we were settled, like this was real life. I kept waiting for it to feel like a routine but it never even came close. I mean, I know crazy. I had two kids within nursing school. This just didn't have an end in sight like those years did. 

My girls are only going to be young for a nanosecond. I'm devastated that the summer is already essentially over. All I can do from now on is be super present, give them the best possible childhood I can, and love them to pieces. Now I know I am being hard on myself. When you are that crazed and busy, something is always going to suffer... but I was determined it would never be my girls. I would much rather have a messy house, mountains of laundry, super-quick dinners, or no sleep than for them to feel the mania in any way. They are happy and good... I just want the absolute best for them. 

Now from past experience, staying home with them is about 1023898 times harder than going to work for me. I had tasks at work, I knew what I was doing, I was successful. At home I constantly feel like a failure, I have no idea what I am doing, I am exhausted and my patience wears thin... But it is so worth it. I know this is exactly what is best for my family right now, and so this is what I'm going to do. I am still going to stay 'as needed' for work to stay in it. I love being a nurse and I don't regret going back to school for it at all. I just know that my girls need me right now so I choose them... and I also realize how fortunate I am to be able to make the choice to stay home. Matt is the most supportive, fantabulous, amazeballs hubby in the universe who will go to the ends of the earth to make all of his girls happy. I don't know how I ended up so lucky.

To finish up this introspective, not funny post, I will leave you with a few of my fav pics from the last week. 

1. A selfie I discovered on my phone last weekend. Clearly someone got into my makeup: 

2. Olivia passed out mid-morning in her chair. This never happens. Ever. Like for real, never ever. 

3. You may have seen my Facebook pic yesterday, but we made homemade playdough (with sparkles, obvi) and the girls were THRILLED. Livi has turned into such a little person lately and when I told them all to look up at the camera, she said 'CHEEEEEEEESE' with not the most attractive outcome: 

4. Lastly, we were outside playing with my nephew Tyler and Summer took a nosedive in the driveway. The drama that ensued over a knee and elbow scrape was unreal, but her dutiful little followers were right there to help her inside to her chair. I mean, seriously. 

Happy Wednesday!