It has been forever since I have posted here, life has been busy and overwhelming at times.  To be honest I wasn’t sure I would find the time to post again but it feels good to write out my thoughts and all the crazy ups + downs from the past few months.  It has been a roller coaster, but we are still standing + I know I will want to look back on this time and will appreciate having this space to remember it from, just like my first three pregnancies.

The start of this pregnancy was very similar to my others, I was super sick and in survival mode until about 14 weeks — it was touuuugh but knew it would be worth it and that I could survive it just like the times before.  Then on Christmas (and right around the time I was starting to feel better), my entire house got hit with Covid and of course I got hit the worst.  It took a few weeks to fully recover but I did, and was so ready at that point to embrace all the second trimester magic!!!  Anyone who knows me knows I love being pregnant and I was so excited + grateful (still am!!) to experience it all one last time.

Fast forward a couple weeks to the beginning of January, my husband + I headed to our 20 week anatomy ultrasound.  This wasn’t our first rodeo, we knew what to expect, only everything about this time felt completely different.  The tech immediately started checking my due date + asking how big our other girls were, she was clearly very concerned about the baby’s size.  The doctor came in a few minutes later and confirmed that our baby girl was measuring “quite small” and that they would be referring me to a high risk follow-up.  It felt shocking and scary, but I tried to remain positive during what felt like a veryyyy long wait to our high risk appointment two weeks later.

Because of Covid restrictions, I had to go to that appointment alone which made it feel even scarier.  My husband sat in the lobby, and I sat in the room while the tech quietly did all the measurements + I will never forget looking up at the screen to under the 1st percentile all across the board.  I knew something was wrong, she had been measuring at the 4th percentile at the appointment two weeks prior and it clearly wasn’t only not a fluke, but she had dropped in percentiles.  The high risk doctor came in and told me that she had a severe growth restriction, and that they really had no idea why.  The next six weeks would be critical for her and that they were sorry.  I left that room in tears, completely devastated + wondering if we would ever get to meet our baby.  I remember hardly being able to look at the ultrasound pictures of her because I felt so bad, like my body was completely failing her and that there was literally nothing I could do.  I let myself feel REALLY sad that day, but got up the next morning ready to fight for her and in a much better mindset.  I know I have so many special people around me to thank for that, because I never could have done any of this alone.

It’s now been 9 weeks since that high risk appointment and we have definitely had hard moments, but also so much support + prayers — and thankfully, lots of little wins!!  We have officially left my regular OB and are now patients at the high risk doctor, and have had a growth ultrasound every other week since that day.  Our baby girl is still under the first percentile, but has continued to grow steadily each week (just at her own slower pace) + otherwise is doing so well, she’s so active and such a little fighter!  In addition to the ultrasounds, I have NST’s twice a week to closely monitor her, and also had steroid shots a few weeks ago to strengthen her lungs in case she has to come very early.  I am on FMLA from work, resting a lot while the girls are at school, and eating lots of protein + hydrating a ton.  I have also done a ton of testing and everyone we have met with feels pretty confident that the reason she is so small is because of an issue with my placenta not getting her enough nutrients, so we feel hopeful that if that is the case, if we can just get her here — she will thrive!!  The doctors have gone from worst case scenario to a little more optimistic with each appointment, I really am so thankful for how closely they have watched her.  Even though it’s so bittersweet to be at a different doctor and delivering at a different hospital + in such a different scenario than I did with my other three, I know this is where we were meant to be at this time.

Today I am officially 31 weeks (!!!), a number I wasn’t sure we would ever see this time around, and the doctors definitely didn’t — our sweet girl is proving people wrong already!  I am just so grateful for each day she is still cozy + fighting away in my belly.  We have been prepared that she could come at any time if she shows signs that she would do better out than in, but we are leaning into hope and that even if she has to come very soon, we have a wonderful NICU that can take really good care of her.  If you had asked me months ago if I could make it through such a crazy journey so far, I wouldn’t have believed I was strong enough for it, but just like anything else hard in life, you just find a way to do it.  She’s worth it, and I just love her so much already.

**Photo by Shawna Bielat Photography, who so graciously did these for me early in case she has to come.  She is a GEM!!!!

Sharing some photos from our Christmas, it has been forever since I have updated the blog but these holiday posts are some of my favorite to look back on + I know I will be so thankful to have them one day.

Christmas this year was not at all what we planned for.  Long story short, we all ended up with Covid + of allllll the days of the year, it showed up right on Christmas Eve.  After a really sick first trimester of pregnancy this was pretty much the last thing I wanted (especially with a baby in my belly!), but that’s sometimes reality + through all our years of parenting I have definitely learned that sometimes things just don’t turn out how you want them to be.

We made the most of it, stayed cozy in our jammies + watched lots of Christmas movies from the couch.  The girls still got the best visit from Santa and lots of fun little gifts that kept them busy all day long.  We ended up extending Christmas a few weeks and getting to have a second one with my parents, and then my husband’s parents just a few days ago.  And I know that of all the Christmas holidays, this will definitely be one we won’t forget — the time we all got Covid and I had our last baby sister in my belly.

Also sharing a few more photos from our December, some of our favorite traditions — picking out the tree, Waverly + Remie in front of the sink at Christmas, + festive days at home.

We hope you had the best holiday with your loved ones (and are staying healthy your way!), happy 2022! XO

Big news over here, BABY NUMBER FOUR is on the way!!!  I still cannot believe that this is our reality, even though one more baby was always a deep down hope for me, I truly never thought it would actually happen.  Our sweet little bonus baby, it feels so, so special.

Joe & I both come from families with four kids, so we always laughed that we would follow along but when it came to the actual time for that, all the practical and “responsible” reasons pointed to stopping as our family of five.  I had gone into my pregnancy with Remie mentally preparing myself that she was probably our last, and honestly felt so genuinely happy with life with our three girls that most of the time I really felt we could be complete.  Yet there was always this feeling deep down that I couldn’t give up, even when I really wanted to, so we never completely closed the door even though as time has kept moving on it looked more & more like we would do life as a family of five.

This summer we had a few more very real conversations about it, and I so badly wanted to feel at peace with whatever decision we made, so I hoped & hoped for a sign of what we should do.  And just a couple months later, even though we weren’t trying, I got my sign — the strongest feeling I had ever had that I was pregnant.  Even with three prior pregnancies, that feeling had never happened before and definitely not nearly as clearly.  Sure enough, that night, I got a very faint positive test super early, right before I was even three weeks along.  I was so shocked, I took five more pregnancy tests that week — all positive, each line darker than the last.  Truly the sign I was waiting for, I just never knew it would come so clearly. 🙂

So here we are, it’s about 9 weeks later.  We took some time to process what a huge change this will be for all of us, and we still have so many of those practical things to figure out, but really all that matters is that we know we have a LOT of love to give.  Joe & I told our girls a few weeks ago, it was one of the sweetest moments of my life.  Waverly cried tears of joy and said “I feel like I am dreaming”.  Me too, girl. 

We are all so excited to get to do this one more time, and to officially complete our family with the baby who we can’t help but feel was always meant to be. Baby B FOUR, due early June 2022 (three days before Avalon’s birthday, our fourth summer babe!).

So, so, so excited to meet our littlest love!

Happy Friday!!!  Stopping in to share about one of my favorite collabs EVER, a deep cleaning service from our local friends at Home Clean Heroes.  This was such a treat for me, especially this crazy time of year with all four of us girls back in school.  I am the first to admit that I hate paying for things that I feel like I can do myself, but after getting this done I realized how worth much it’s worth it.  Home Clean Heroes came + deep cleaned our home one Friday morning while we were at work/school, and it was sooooooo nice coming home to a sparkly clean home to kick off the weekend.  I could not believe how much time we had back, we usually spend a lot of our Saturday cleaning so this was such a TRUE GIFT!  It was one of the most relaxing weekends we have had in a while. 🙂

If you are local to VB and want to get some of  your time back (and a super clean home!!!), here is their website.  This also would be such a fun gift with the holidays coming up!  Happy weekend ahead! XO

We are three weeks into school & I am finally getting around to sharing a little bit about what back to school looked like this year for us.  Thankfully there were no big transitions or tears this time around, all three of my girls returned to the same school as before, with lots of friends & familiar faces!!

Waverly and Avalon are in their second year of being at the same school together, I always looked forward to this time so much and it really is so sweet watching them walk out at the end of the day together.  Waverly is in fourth grade (doesn’t seem possible!), I promise I was just following her bus to kindergarten and now somehow next year she will be the OLDEST at the school.  She loves her Spanish immersion program, her friends, and has turned into very much a rule follower and is super focused about school.  Avalon is loving life and being with all her little friends in the first grade, her main goal each day is to have all the fun 🙂  This is so funny because they used to be the other way around, but I guess it comes with the territory of their ages too.  We are just very thankful that they love school and are all around happy kids.

Remie moved up to the 3s class at preschool, she has the same teacher that Avalon had when she was three.  One of the highlights of my every day is walking in to pick her up right after nap and seeing how precious she is sitting with all the other kids in her class.  She plays school almost every night, exactly like Waverly Maye used to do when she was that age, it’s so sweet to listen to her recite the names of all her classmates and pretend like she is the teacher.  She loves books, painting, and will 100% of the time pick the color purple for anything she creates.  She is also on her way to being potty trained (!!!), I am so proud of her and how quickly she transitions after being home all summer with me.

Hope your school year is off to the best start!  So excited to begin all the fall festivities! XO