Saturday, December 17, 2011

June 24, 2012



Dear Little One,
  I've known about you since October 15, 2011 when I took the first test and found out it was positive :)  Your Daddy and I had a dinner date with another couple that evening and I remember looking at him so many times throughout that night thinking "We're having another baby!"  I was so excited.  I told your grandparents, some aunts/uncles, and some of my closest friends right away.  Then, I waited.  I waited until this week to tell the rest of the world.  On Wednesday, your Daddy and I got to see you so clearly.  You were moving your arms and legs and you kept rolling onto your side.  It was amazing.  We heard your heartbeat too!  It was incredibly strong and then whole time I had tears coming from my eyes.  You are a miracle.  We have a long wait to find out if you are a girl or a boy.  And an even longer wait to meet you.  But, that's okay.  Your big sisters keep me very busy and someday soon, you will know what I mean. 
I already love you so very much.
Love, Mommy

*Pictures from top left: Positive Pregnancy Test, 7 weeks tummy, 10 weeks tummy, Sisters Reading their new favorite book "The New Baby"(By Mercer Mayer), & 12 week Sonogram Picture....

Maddie Gets her Gold Belt!

Friday, December 9, 2011

Thursday, December 1, 2011

Christmas Tree Shopping :)

This is what we did with our afternoon.  It was pretty awesome :)

Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Guess what they are up to?.....

In the comments section, please enter your guess as to what the girls are doing in these pic's.... I "caught" them in action! :-)  I'll post the real story tomorrow!

Friday, November 18, 2011

I'm SO grateful for them.


My Girls from Sarah Mejias on Vimeo.

*Song: "Never Grow Up" by Taylor Swift

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

Snow Angel....

almost!  She's been practicing for when the snow comes.  Carpet Angels will have to do for now :)

Thursday, November 10, 2011

The other day was beautiful here so I suggested that the girls and I walk to the playground in our neighborhood.  We hadn't ever done it before and I wasn't sure Grace could handle walking that far.  On our adventure, we had a blast. We picked up leaves, looked at fancy painted mail boxes, and stopped for big gulps of water.  At the park, they each played on the swings for a long time; Maddie discovered that way that you can lay on the swing on your tummy and twist the swing in one direction.  When she let go she laughed with glee and yelled "It's like a roller coaster!!!"  It was so fun to watch :)  
Maddie and Gabe have been out of town for almost 48 hours now and I miss them.  Of course I miss my husband but before he left we were both getting on each others nerves a bit so a break is actually kinda nice. But Maddie is another story.  Her laugh is seriously infectious; best laugh around.  I miss her bear hugs and kisses on the lips.  Gracie misses her too.  I can tell she feels kind of lonely in a room all to herself.  

On the other hand, time with just Grace and myself has been pretty wonderful.  We've napped ;), played, eaten and run errands.  It's just me, her and Tucker and it's quiet.  Just a little while ago this evening, she hurt herself.  I was cuddling her to make it all better.  She turned to Tucker and let him kiss her hand and she said "Tucker feel me happy."  I knew she meant, "Tucker makes me feel happy" but her wording was so precious and I didn't want to forget it. 

Monday, October 31, 2011

Happy Halloween!!!

We realized tonight just how much we LOVE our new neighborhood!  As we walked around trick-or-treating, I told Gabe to "absorb" this moment.  He said, "Oh, I'm absorbing :)"  It was simply awesome!

Thursday, October 27, 2011

Tuesday, October 25, 2011

Sunday, October 23, 2011

Monday, October 17, 2011

Vermont!!

There is no place like Vermont (except possibly my hometown :)  Gabe and I had the best 4 days away and we felt as though we "ate" our way through Burlington.  It was so fun and quiet!  On the 3rd day, I looked at him and said "I love you and all, but I miss the chaos of kids and dogs!"  He agreed.  Life would be pretty uneventful for us without them.  I reflected on the fact that we only spent 6 months as a married couple before Maddie came along.  So, we don't really know marriage without kids.  I'm sure when they're grown and gone, we'll have plenty of time for just the two of us :)

Monday, October 10, 2011

Happy 5th Birthday Maddie!


Dear Madeline,
  Today is your fifth birthday and I'm completely blown away.  The time has seriously flown by and if I think about it too long, I will cry.  Now that you are 5, I want to tell you some things about yourself so that you can know who you were today. 
  You LOVE anything to do with Strawberry Shortcake.  You have amazing manners for your age.  You work very hard to be kind to others and sometimes the sweetness you show to Grace brings me to tears.  You feel all feelings very strongly, which makes me think you are passionate.  You crack me up when you belly laugh after using "potty" words at inappropriate times.  You are terrific at Tae Kwon Do and just received your black stripe belt last week.  Most of all, you are an amazing little person with a beautiful heart for God.  You often sing songs that you've made up.  They almost always have to do with Jesus.  They are beautiful.  Your whole life I've said to you, "Maddie, you are beautiful on the inside as well as on the outside."  I never really knew if you were listening.  But, a couple of days ago at bedtime while I was sitting beside your bed, you looked at me deep with your eyes that are a perfect reflection of mine.  You said to me, "Mommy, you are beautiful on the inside and on the outside.  And, I love you."  I will never forget that.

 I love you.
Love, Mommy

Saturday, October 8, 2011

Maddie's 5th Birthday Party

I'm pretty sure the pictures speak for themselves, but, basically, we had a BLAST!!!

*You can see all 106 pictures here :)

Friday, October 7, 2011

BookShelves

  I've been looking at my bookshelves a lot lately.  I found some things recently that had still not been unpacked and they fit right in.  It occurred to me just how much you can tell about someone (me, specifically) from looking at their shelves.  The very first things I noticed were how much I love color as well as pictures.  Color seems necessary.  It also feels brave.  There is sage green, fluorescent orange as well as sparkly red being represented.  Pictures are on another level.  I fell in love with taking pictures at a young age.  I'm not necessarily good at it, but I LOVE to capture moments.  My memory isn't always so great (mommy-brain) and so pictures really help me remember what I've been doing :) 
  The funny thing about my pictures on these particular shelves is that they are almost all part of my life's journey.  The majority of them, are of me and my family.  All of my parents are represented (although I wish the pic's of them were a little more current), my sisters make numerous appearances, Gabe & I are there (pre-kids) and, of course, the Girls.  As I look at the photos of times past, I'm reminded how much I love all of them and how much I know they love me.  Since I believe that one's bookshelves say a lot about a person, it's only fair for me to interpret my own, and I think mine say "Wow!  She is blessed."

Thursday, October 6, 2011

It is definitely Fall! :)

10-6-11   5:16pm
                                                      

Saturday, October 1, 2011

Georgia

September 2011

So, our family went on a trip to Georgia about a week ago. We headed down south for a dog show; more specifically The National Portuguese Water Dog Specialty. There were a lot of things about Georgia that I did not enjoy, however, I want to focus on the positive :) The following album of pictures (there were too many to narrow down) showcases the fun times we had! Gabe did a great job of showing dogs for confirmation, Sandy did an awesome job of competing with both Lois and Zora in obedience, and the girls and I did a terrific job of hanging out ;-)

When Dog Shows were not happening, we did have some down time. We took the girls to the butterfly exhibit that was on the premises of the resort we stayed in. That was fun and if you look at the pictures, you can see when one of the butterflies landed on Grace and she didn't even know! We also took a day trip to Atlanta and played at the Children's Museum. It was a blast and Gabe and I even got in on the fun ;)

This week has been busy with preparations for Maddie's 5th birthday (which is fast approaching!) The girls and I have also been cooking and baking a ton. I love the Fall just for the simple reason that it's a season that seems to be all about food. It is cold and raining here (finally!!!) and so tonight's dinner will be Butternut Squash Soup with crusty warm bread and roasted fall vegetables. Happy Weekend!

Saturday, September 10, 2011

Party!

We celebrated Grace's 3rd birthday today at Chuck E. Cheese's and fun was had by all! Our clan was so exhausted from all the partying, we headed home and took a family style snooze :)
Video's can be found by clicking here.

Thursday, September 8, 2011

Birthday Girl



Dear Gracie,
Happy 3rd Birthday baby girl! I love you so much and so deeply that it's hard to find words. You are such a light in our lives. Your sense of humor is amazing for your age and your little laugh is infectious.
In one hour from now, three years ago, you were born. I was so happy to meet you. All I ever wanted for Maddie was a sister and you were it. After you were born, you cried for literally an hour straight! I was exhausted and thought it was a sign that you would be a tough baby. But, I was wrong. You were an easy, easy baby who really loved to sleep :)
I just want you to know how very important you are to me. I love you so unconditionally. You are indeed a gift and a blessing. I can't wait to see what this year has in store for you :)

Love always,
Mommy

Thursday, September 1, 2011

Tuesday, August 23, 2011

Tuesday, August 9, 2011

We have lived in our new home since May but due to my surgery, recovery, vacation and general busyness, I haven't been able to do a video-tour of it until now. We are loving living here and I know that I feel grateful every day that this is where I get to live! Enjoy! (**Sorry it's so shaky! I'm not a professional ;)

Our New Home from Sarah Mejias on Vimeo.


Thursday, August 4, 2011


MarkerGate 2011

We went to a crab feast the other night in Maryland at my dear friend, Rosana's, home. It was spectacular! We picked Maryland Blue Crab to our hearts content. While the adults were busy with messy fingers, caked in Old Bay seasoning, the children were...umm...playing. Or so we thought. Us, adults were having a blast listening to music, eating and most of all laughing. We should have wondered at the quiet coming from the playroom; after all there were 6 kids.

One by one they started to appear and each looked a little more marked than the one before. Suddenly Grace appeared and this picture is exactly as she looked. She had drawn all over her face, feet and arms (sticking almost entirely to the right side of her body). She looked a little lost and the only thing I could do was...laugh, and laugh, and laugh. She has never done this before and it was so funny to me. Other parents were, shall we say, upset with their kids; for a minute I thought mine and Gabe's reaction was wrong. But, I thought about the fact that I really like those moments when "kids will be kids" and to me, that's all I really want them to be. :-)

Tuesday, July 26, 2011

There have been times lately where it seems the summer is dragging on. Maybe it's because of the terrible heat or because preschool is on vacation. Either way, some days have felt extremely long. Which, I'll admit, has caused some anxiety on my part. I find myself with racing thoughts, "What will we do today?, How can I keep them busy so they don't fight?, Where can I take them that is inexpensive?, How can I enjoy the summer a little myself?, What will I do with them for the next 12 hours?!?"

Then, a thought hit me. It was something I've heard from my mother many times before: "A little boredom is good for kids." It seems so radical in today's world! The idea that I don't have to be their constant source of entertainment!? That I can pick up my own book and enjoy it while they find something to do that doesn't require me driving them anywhere! That if I allow them some boredom they will actually find a way to have fun; maybe even tap into their imaginations. That if I turn the TV off, they will survive!

It all seems so retro and because of that, I'm in. The old way of doing things sometimes is best. The time before IPads, DVR's and Leapster Explorers. I want to taste that bit of nostalgia for myself. I want to see the girls come up with skits and dance routines to perform for Gabe and I (just like Lizzy and me :). I want them to scribble on paper and call it their "journal" because that's what they saw me doing this morning. I want them to find fun in the ordinary. I want them to get lost in a book!!!

So, the other day while I was having these thoughts, my sister posted something on her website that is exactly what I was thinking but didn't have the words for. While my sister didn't write it, she is an amazing journalist, writer, sister and you can find her here.
I want to say for the record that neither Maddie nor Gracie have said they want to be a writer, (this week Mad's wants to be a Firefighter and Grace wants to be a frog) but I found the suggestions in the following piece applicable to all parents; of girls in particular! ;)




Written by M. Molly Backes

What should you do to help your child pursue her dreams of becoming a writer?

First of all, let her be bored. Let her have long afternoons with absolutely nothing to do. Limit her TV-watching time and her internet-playing time and take away her cell phone. Give her a whole summer of lazy mornings and dreamy afternoons. Make sure she has a library card and a comfy corner where she can curl up with a book. Give her a notebook and five bucks so she can pick out a great pen. Insist she spend time with the family. It’s even better if this time is spent in another state, a cabin in the woods, a cottage on the lake, far from her friends and people her own age. Give her some tedious chores to do. Make her mow the lawn, do the dishes by hand, paint the garage. Make her go on long walks with you and tell her you just want to listen to the sounds of the neighborhood.


Let her be lonely. Let her believe that no one in the world truly understands her. Give her the freedom to fall in love with the wrong person, to lose her heart, to have it smashed and abused and broken. Occasionally be too busy to listen, be distracted by other things, have your nose in a great book, be gone with your own friends.

Let her have secrets. Let her have her own folder on the family computer. Avoid the temptation to read through her notebooks. Writing should be her safe haven, her place to experiment, her place to work through her confusion and feelings and thoughts. If she does share her writing with you, be supportive of her hard work and the journey she’s on. Ask her questions about her craft and her process. Ask her what was hardest about this piece and what she’s most proud of. Don’t mention publication unless she mentions it first. Remember that writing itself is the reward.

Let her get a job. Let her work long hours for crappy pay with a mean employer and rude customers. If she wants to be a writer, she’ll have to be comfortable with hard work and low pay. Let her spend her own money on books and lattes – they’ll be even sweeter when she’s worked hard for them.

Let her fail. Let her write pages and pages of painful poetry and terrible prose. Let her write painfully bad fan fiction. Don’t freak out when she shows you stories about Bella Swan making out with Draco Malfoy. Never take her writing personally or assume it has anything to do with you, even if she only writes stories about dead mothers and orphans.

Let her go without writing if she wants to. Never nag her about writing, even if she’s cheerful when writing and completely unbearable when she’s not. Let her quit writing altogether if she wants to.

Let her make mistakes.

Let her stay after school to work on the newspaper, but only if she wants to. Let her publish embarrassingly personal stories in the school literary magazine. Let her spill the family’s secrets. Let her tell the truth, even if you’d rather not hear it.

Let her sit outside at night under the stars. Give her a flashlight to write by.

Let her find her own voice, even if she has to try on the voices of a hundred others first to do so. Let her find her own truth, even if she has to spin outrageous lies in search of it. Remember that her truth isn’t the same as anyone else’s truth, and that even if you were there with her when it happened, your memories of a moment will likely be vastly different from hers. Let her write thinly-veiled memoirs disguised as fiction. It’s okay if she massages past events to make a better story, or leaves entire years of her life on the cutting room floor. It’s okay if she writes about characters who have nothing to do with her life, her experience, or her world. That’s what fiction is.

Let her write poetry on her jeans and her shoes and her backpack, even if you just bought them brand new.

Keep her safe but not too safe, comfortable but not too comfortable, happy but not too happy.

Above all else, love and support her. Love her and believe in her. Love her, and let her go. In the end, your love is all that matters, and it will be enough. The rest will come from her.

Wednesday, June 1, 2011

The Sadness

There it is. Every time I think it's gone, it shows up again; unexpected. I'm sad. I've been through a lot in the month of May and I was happy to see it go. Thank God it's June. May tested me. And now that June is here and the pain from my surgery is starting to subside, I'm left with sadness. It's hard to put my finger on what brings the tears.

Sometimes it's the thoughts that were racing through my head 2 weeks ago this evening: "Will I be okay?" "Will Gabe be fine if I'm not?" "Will I be able to have any more babies?" "Is God hearing me?"

Those thoughts pass and then I'm overcome with the thought that God did hear me and that He kept me safe. I cried most of the time I was at church on Sunday and when I wasn't crying, I was just trying really hard not to. My emotions are barely below the surface.

The last thing I think about is the love and help that have been expressed and offered since my sickness/pregnancy/surgery began. I'm humbled that people care that much for me. It makes me cry because I feel undeserving of it but at the same time I know that I'm worth it.

Heading into summer I'm looking forward. I don't want to deny what I've been through but I can only stay so long. So, the sadness washes over me and I just tell myself "it's temporary" and I breathe.

Sunday, May 15, 2011

Today


Well, many of you know that we have moved out of our 1st home and are waiting to move into our new home. I think (finger's crossed) that tomorrow is that day :) We cannot wait to be reunited with our stuff and start a whole new chapter for our family. I've been dealing with some physical ailments and sadness and that has also made it really hard for me to blog. But, in the spirit of the fact that things are looking up I wanted to post a picture of Mad's and me on Mother's Day from last weekend. We went to the park in the morning because that's what I wanted to do. Happy Sunday!

Saturday, April 23, 2011

Easter Preparations


On Thursday the girls and I headed to the National Zoo but since we totally forgot it's Spring Break and everyone-under-the-sun was there, we had to leave. I mean, there wasn't even any parking. So, because I saw Maddie's face begin to crumple at the thought of leaving without seeing any animals, I offered to take them to the toy store and let them each choose 1 toy. (This was easy to do because almost all of their toys are in boxes at this point!) We headed to the toy store and each girl was different as to how she chose her item. Maddie had a plan; she wanted the Barbie a friend has. We found it in no time. Grace, on the other hand, wanted to peruse each and every aisle. She finally decided on some toy cars. They were on sale and there was 9 of them! As we headed home, I an idea. I remembered how my Dad would do "picnic's" with us inside the family room, on the ground,on a blanket while we ate a meal. I used to LOVE it. So, I offered up this idea and Maddie was excited! As we dined among Maddie's new Barbie and Grace's new Toy Car collection, I thought to myself "this is the kind of mom I like to be."

*The Collage above shows our Indoor Picnic, The girls enjoying "Resurrection Rolls" and also the egg dyeing fun we had this afternoon!

Wednesday, April 20, 2011

Easter Bunny! :)

Successful trip to the mall yesterday; new summer sandals, cinammon-sugar pretzels, and pictures with the Easter Bunny!

Monday, April 18, 2011

Park Playdate & Nate's Sweater :)



Playdate at the Park this morning!Nate's Finished Sweater!
For my sweet friend Rosana's newest addition :)
Pattern available here

Tuesday, April 12, 2011

Birthdays!


Happy 7th Birthday to Tucker (yesterday) & Zora (today)!!!

Thursday, April 7, 2011

3 years for me ;)

Dos Collages ;-)

Well, a lot has been going on around here! I'm headed out the door as I write this, but most of my days are spend running errands (what else is new? :), and packing!!! We are moving in 3 weeks and are so excited :) We spent the weekend in SoCal and so I created a collage to show some highlights.


Then, this evening Gabe decided to get the ingredients for Strawberry Shortcake for dessert and it was a hit :) So, to honor how fun it was, I created yet another collage :) Enjoy!

Friday, April 1, 2011

Headed to CA

Good Morning! Gabe and I leave this afternoon for sunny Los Angeles to attend a wedding. I know it seems like we just had a vacation, but let me tell you, Disney is not really a vacay. It's exhausting and there is never a moment away from your children! I love my girls with all my heart but 6 full days together, without any break, was quite much ;) So, Gabe and I are off to a weekend away and we are not only going to a wedding but we also have SO much to celebrate. We have a 3 year anniversary for Gabe tomorrow, and our 5 year wedding anniversary is one week from today! Plus, with selling this house and buying another one, we have a lot to look forward to.

The pictures I'm including are from the beret I finished knitting 2 nights ago. I took a knitting class and my friend asked me to knit it for her sister's boyfriend (Hi Siobhan! :) So, it turned out well and I plan to make it again!


Sunday, March 27, 2011

Sunday

We are in the midst of so much house stuff that it's hard to find a moment to blog. I have photo's and video coming later this evening of Maddie during a very big accomplishment this week...she got her gold strip belt in Tae Kwon Do and she was beyond thrilled :) I promise to share it here tonight!

Monday, March 21, 2011

Day 365

Here's the link to see the pic's from Disney :-) And, just to be clear, there are MANY pic's!
Disney World 2011

Day 365 / End of the Year Long Blog Project!

Well, it's here. It's been 1 year since I started the Picture a Day Blog Project (which many times turned into a Picture a week if not less) but it also means it's my birthday and I'm now 33. We've just returned from Disney World and we've come home to a house that has a For Sale sign out front. Lot's has happened in the past year and I would argue that most of it has been wonderful. Today, I have lots to celebrate and that is what I want at the forefront of my mind....especially because I had thought I'd catch a yoga class this morning while the kids went back to school, but instead woke to find that Maddie seems to have pink-eye and Gracie still has her cough. So, instead of yoga, knitting and reading this am, I'll be lugging my gang to the pediatrician's office. Happy 33rd to me....my, times have changed!

Friday, March 11, 2011

Day 356


Our week has been extremely busy with home staging, cleaning, packing, laundry, haircut (Maddie), preschool, house-hunting and regular life! But, the good news is that we leave for a very magical place in less than 48 hours and while we're away playing, our house will go on the market!!! All the hard work is finally paying off :)

Sunday, March 6, 2011

Day 351

Scavenger Hunt to Disney World! from Sarah Mejias on Vimeo.



Oh yeah....We did! We broke the news this afternoon to the girls that we are taking them to Disney World next weekend. The video is long because we wanted to capture the Scavenger Hunt Gabe and I made up :) Enjoy!!

Wednesday, March 2, 2011

Day 347


I got to go out to dinner tonight with my dearest friend and also made a trip to the knitting shop...Heaven. Gabe, on the other hand, took the girls shopping :) Disney, here we come! We leave in 10 days and will be there on St. Patrick's Day. So, all the shirts fit the bill :-)

Tuesday, March 1, 2011

Day 346

All I could do was laugh when Gracie greeted me upstairs this morning looking like this! She used scented markers so she smelled like a great, big Cherry and she thought it was so funny. She even gave herself a mustache! We've had a tough week or so with behaviors around here so it was a welcome tension breaker!

Sunday, February 27, 2011

Day 344

At Bedtime tonight the girls decided to look at books together in Grace's bed. You can't tell, but their room was dark other than their flashlights. It was beautiful.

Friday, February 25, 2011

Day 342



From Top Down: Today at Tae Kwon Do she was really working to focus on her form. She looks so cute focused :-), and Pajama Day (yesterday). This is right before we headed to the most fun day of their school year!

Wednesday, February 23, 2011

Day 340

We've been sick for the last 24 hours (lots of throwing up, very little sleep) and I've contracted the sickness as well. Today I've felt like I was run over by a truck and Maddie was starting to be on the mend so she made me this picture. I literally got teary-eyed when she handed it to me. It's so special to see how good her writing is becoming, and how cute her little person is! She continues to amaze me.

Tuesday, February 22, 2011

Day 339

We took the girls to Disney Princesses on Ice over the weekend and it was SO fun! They are at such great ages to take to things like this. It was a total preview of what we can expect in just a few weeks when we travel to Orlando! But, Shhhhh, they have NO idea! :-)
Click the link below to see more pic's!

Princesses on Ice

Tuesday, February 15, 2011

Day 332

Lunch time from Sarah Mejias on Vimeo.



This was taken a month ago but cracks me up over and over. Wait and watch for when Grace tries to feed Maddie...Classic!

Monday, February 14, 2011

Wednesday, February 9, 2011

Day 326


The girls got new shoes over the weekend and I love what they chose! They each had a say in what they wanted; their true personalities came out.

Grace knew what she wanted right away; sparkly shoes that light up with
every step she takes.

Maddie needed more time; she considered all the options
and chose the one's with Rainbow laces. I should have known this would be her choice considering every time I give her a pedicure she requests "Rainbow toes!"
:)