Social Media Who?

Friday, February 23, 2018

As some of you may have noticed, my footprint on social media has disappeared the past few weeks.  I've decided to give it all up entirely for Lent and deleted it off my phone.  I wanted to share this with you all before I left but I felt that was even defeating my purpose for doing it.  I did it for clarity of mind, for myself.  To reconnect with silence, boredom, and my kids.  To show them that when I have a free second, it's not sucked up by the brightness of a phone screen.  I didn't want to broadcast it to the world.  I didn't feel the need to.  But here's a few things I've noticed so far, and it's only been a few weeks.

1.  I still find myself staying close to my phone.  Even with it stripped of it's "scrolling endlessly" functions, I still find myself checking my email more, looking online for recipes and communicating/ texting with people.  I still feel the need to have it close by.  Hopefully this detachment will happen over these next 40 days and I can go without needing it on my person.

2.  My battery life lasts longer.  I used to have to charge my phone halfway through the day.  Now, I'm not using it near as much as I used to and saving battery life.  It's a small plus but still noticeable.

3.  I notice more people sucked into their phones.  With the more "free time" I have without mindlessly being on my phone, I notice the world around me on theirs.  It honestly doesn't bother me, it just seems so robotic and it takes human experience out of things.  The first time I felt awkward without having the media on my phone was in the doctor's office waiting room.  Every single person waiting was on their phone, busying themselves with the apps I'd given up.  I was left with my email and the unread magazines on the tables.  And guess what?  I survived.  Would you believe it?  I won't say that it's been easy.  I know I'm missing some announcements (babies, birthdays, engagements, etc)... but I know what's going on in my best friend's lives and I'm more than okay with that.

That being said, I'm planning on doing a couple "invisible posts" on the blog.  Hinting at the fact that they won't be shared to social media and all who stumble upon them, just stumble upon them.

Life update:  I am about 30 weeks along with Maggie Jo and she's getting so big!  We are MORE than ready for her and so excited to be a family of 5.  I know our biggest challenges in life have yet to come but I am ready for them and can't wait to tackle them head on.  B & E are super excited too.  They will be 2.5 when she's born and they already know her by name.  Potty training has taken a backseat for now.  We don't want to push anything too fast.  We will be ready when they are.

Hoping everyone has a happy end of February!  This month can be a hard one.  But we are almost done and on to March!  Spring, basketball tournaments and St. Pat's!  Some of our faves.

See you soon!
Lauren, E & B (and MJ)

We had the most snow we've had in a few years and naturally we wanted to introduce E and B to it.  They were pretty skeptical at first.  In fact, Bennett hated it.  But after a little time, they warmed up to the freezing, powdery fun and helped Dad shovel the driveway.

We are almost finished with our first 8 week stretch of swim lessons at the Rec Center.  The twins LOVED it.  Besides the timing (8:50 AM Saturdays) I am so glad we did it.  So worth it.  They are already way more comfortable in the water than they were 2 months ago.  Making me that more excited for sweet sweet summatime. 

2 0 1 8

Thursday, January 4, 2018

Happy New Year Everyone!

I kind of strongly don't like the whole "new years resolution/ new year, new me" yada yada that happens every year, sorry to start off negatively.  To me, it's setting myself up to fail.  Because let's be honest, I'm still going to end the year spending too much money on things I don't need and eating delicious foods that aren't really that great for me.  BUT... I am going to try and tackle something this year: debt.  When the babies were really tiny and I was able to actually listen to a podcast, I listened to Dave Ramsey.  I like the way he teaches people about money, especially someone like me, who's view of money is totally out of whack.  Anyways- more on that to come in another post.

2018 is going to be one hell of a year, I just know it.  Let's talk about where we're at and where we (think) we're going!

E m m y  &  B e n n e t t

 THEY TURNED 2!  Can you believe it?  We celebrated on their actual birthday: Dec. 30th.  We took them to Winstead's, a local KC diner, with our families then back to our house for cake, presents and drinks!  It was the perfect night because we didn't overdo anything.  Last year was so crazy with almost 60 people here for their 1st birthday.  AND if you can remember, Bennett had a bilateral ear infection that day and we ended up missing the beginning of the party being in the ER.  

This year was much better.  I made both of their cakes (from a box, but homemade frosting- mom win) and they turned out super cute.  Here's the link for the frosting I made- super easy, and tasted amazing, even days later.  Bennett's was Pooh themed and Emmy had a Trolls cake.  I found the toppers on Amazon for super cheap.

(Pics courtesy of my Mom and Olivia Morgan)

Now that they are two, it feels like the next step for them is to potty train, learn how to communicate better and take them to more social experiences to learn how to be around other littles.  That's the 'perfect plan' and it'll go off without a hitch right?  HAH.  I'm tired thinking about it even as I type this.  But everything will come with time.  I'm not putting any time frames on anything.  It would be nice to have both of them out of diapers by the time MJ comes but it would also be nice to have a private island.

They're doing sooo great with their skills.  Alex has taught B how to shoot baskets and sweet Emmy can sing "Twinkle Twinkle Little Star" in it's entirety.  I'm so proud of how they act in public and around people.  I would be lying if I said they played together nicely all the time though.  We are still working on sharing and not screaming when we want things, but hey... they just turned 2 right?  Plenty of time for that.

M a r g a r e t   J o a n

I'm 22 weeks today with baby girl and May still feels like an eternity away.  126 days left seems short though, and I know it'll be here faster than I know.  Alex finished the nursery over winter break and I love it.  Probably my fave room in the house.  I will share pictures closer to her arrival.

18 weeks
20 weeks
*** I haven't been keeping up with belly pictures QUITE like I did with the twins, but here are a few... better than nothing amiright?

She's a mover and a shaker, I can already tell.  I'm not sure if she really has more room in there because the twins stretched everything out but she moves SO MUCH and I love it.  I often find myself just staring at my belly and watching her jabs, imagining she's saying, "I know the twins are ganging up on you, but I got your back Ma!"  No, in all seriousness, it's pretty amazing to feel the movements of one compared to two.  In the early weeks with the twins, I never knew who was kicking or moving.  Towards the end I could tell more, but I just feel a different bond with MJ already.  And I am beyond excited to see her.

F a m i l y   L i f e   &   Y e a r   a t   a   G l a n c e

Christmas Eve Mass
We are coming off "winter break" as Alex went back to school today.  It was bittersweet.  I have absolutely LOVED having him home.  We did so much around the house and spent so much time just being together.  Christmas was amazing and exhausting.  We had so much family time, which was amazing and so needed.  Sinking back into normal life is nice too.  We put away all our Christmas stuff earlier than last year, as we were ready for a clean slate and the simplicity of January.  Once all the Christmas stuff was gone, Alex kept saying how "bare" things looked around our house and truthfully, it was!  But I love it.  The space to create, move and grow as a family and open up our lives for Maggie is there and ready.

Family Pic Outtakes
Alex's Christmas Party
Annual trip to the Train exhibit at Union Station 
Things with Santa went...
Literally 2.5 seconds after the Santa pic and candy canes in hand!
Dinner on the Plaza!
Alex will begin his next semester of grad school in the next few weeks and the twins will start indoor swim lessons Saturday!  I'm actually psyched for that.  It'll probably be a disaster but getting them started early was the advice I was given, and so we will go.

I'm starting this year with no huge expectations, lots of diffusing of oils and candles, more blogging and keeping things simple.  I wish everyone the best and can't wait to share what this year has in store for us.

See you soon!


And Then There Were 5...

Thursday, November 30, 2017

You guessed it... we are pregnant!  And excited as ever for baby #3.  Even as I sit here and type that, it's weird, awkward, scary and somewhat amazing at the same time.  I don't feel like this is baby #3 since Em and Bennett seem like a package deal.  Wrapping my head around this pregnancy was very different than with the twins.

We didn't plan for the twins, as they were expected to arrive 9 months after our wedding.  Everything about that pregnancy was just "different".  Since we planned this pregnancy and it's definitely only one baby, it all seems very new and somehow foreign.  I started showing around 7 weeks (to myself) and now at 17 weeks, it's no longer, "did Lauren put on some winter weight?"  I have started to feel a little movement and in the ultrasound at 12 weeks, that kid was jumping all over the place.  Must be like moving into a huge new apartment made for two, by yourself.  That or the little babe just knows it needs to practice up for getting away from E&B so it's working on it's moves.

We waited to share this news and chose this as the main outlet because we feel like pregnancy announcements on social media can be so joyous for most people but can also touch the most vulnerable parts of others.  That's a direct quote from my husband Alex.  Please don't mistake our secrecy for un-excitement (if that's even a word).  We are thrilled and so ecstatic for this little one to join our clan.  We just want to remember there are people out there that are struggling to get pregnant, or have had traumatic experiences regarding child bearing and we just are especially sensitive to that.

This pregnancy has had it's many ups and downs so far.  Alex and I had a miscarriage this summer, very early on, within a few weeks of finding out we were pregnant actually.  I won't say I didn't feel inadequate or that I didn't question every thing I ate or did during those two weeks, because I did.  Of course those ugly feelings of guilt come around but thanks to Alex, family and my close friends, we were able to move on, gather ourselves and be able to start trying again.

The first trimester was difficult.  I found out I was pregnant right away (at 4 weeks) and we were so excited.  Nervous, but excited.  The early symptoms started around 5-6 weeks.  Fatigue, round the clock nausea, upset stomach, dizziness, zero appetite, etc.  These guys were the starting line up.  The most frustrating symptom, however, was the dysgeusia, or a the metallic taste in my mouth.  All food sounded bad and tasted horrible.  Nothing sounded good, even water.  I lost like 10 pounds just from not eating and feeling nauseous all day.  I just tried to find things that sounded good and go with them.

When I hit weeks 10-11, I was feeling better.  Now, as I sit at 17 weeks, my biggest pregnancy symptom is being tired.  But I have a feeling it's because of the 2 gremlins I chase around on a daily basis.  We hit another road bump the weekend before Thanksgiving when I woke up with sharp chest pain.  The day before I had some shortness of breath and some pain that I attributed to heartburn, which I had with the twins.  But Saturday night, the pain became paralyzing when I laid down and I knew something was up.  Sunday morning Alex and I went into the Emergency Department to be met with a diagnosis of Pericarditis.  HELLO MEDICAL TERMS, what does that mean?  The Mayo Clinic's definition is the swelling and irritation of the pericardium, the thin, sac-like membrane surrounding your heart.  See their picture below.

Sometimes, fluid can fill up in the space and causes compression on the heart and can create a pericardial effusion.  I had a little bit of that.  My biggest symptoms were sharp pain on inhalation and when laying flat, shortness of breath, and weakness and numbness to my left arm and shoulder.  I was told the cause of this most of the time is viral, but it can also just happen, which is terrifying.  The treatment for me so far has just been ibuprofen around the clock for 3 weeks and next week I will have a repeat ultrasound of my heart.  My cardiologist didn't seem too worried about me and thinks this could just be a one time thing.  But, I'll be seen for checkups for the time being to ensure it's getting better and not worse.

The whole fam came and kept me company in the hospital.. We even took a family nap which was actually glorious.
We ended up having a fantastic Thanksgiving despite our issues.  We traveled to see my family in Indiana.  My cousins all have kiddos around the twins ages making this year the best Thanksgiving yet.  It's so great to see my babies playing with their babies just like we did growing up.  I know that's sappy but it was so special for me and I loved every minute of it.

Cousins: Emmy and Lilly 
Kids table!  

We recreated this cousin photo from back in the day- 
We grew up... and added lots of kids!

Movie time-- aka parent hang time.
We will see how the rest of this pregnancy goes, I am hoping and praying pretty uneventful.  Our technical due date is May 10th.  However, I decided to have a scheduled c-section because of the last delivery.  And I am measuring about a week ahead of where I'm supposed to be.  That being said, I'm going to be ready to see this baby by the end of April!  And we will be finding out the gender and we already have names... so stay tuned y'all.

Since I haven't had a blog in awhile, here's some recent pics from this fall-

Twins first zoo experience (out of the womb)

Buddy.  Loved.  These.  Guys.

We hope everyone is having a great week!  I'm trying to finish my Christmas shopping by this weekend, but one can wish.  I can't believe it's December 1st already.  I'll soon be turning my attention to a 2 year old party for my sweet loves.  Ah what is life.

See you soon!

Lauren, E&B

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