March 15, 2017

Watching the Bump Grow: Weeks 23-40

Remember when I was pregnant?  Looking at these pictures definitely brings back the memories!  Let's just say I am not ready to be pregnant again!

But this is what happens when I am months behind editing photos.  Instead of sitting down and editing I look for old photos that I never posted!  So for memories sake (I am sure I will want to be able to come back and look at these), I am finally sharing the other half of my pregnancy bump photos!

Plus I did not realize that all my notes for each week were still on my old phone on an app that would not open.  It kind of freaked me out.  Luckily I was able to retrieve them.  But a good reminder to back things up in a more timely manner (because that baby is 8 months old now!).  I am currently backing up all the photos off my phone.  Don't put it off!!!

Anyways...a trip down memory lane...weeks 23 to 40.  It was pretty special to re-read all of these again.  It is amazing how easy it is to forget all those sweet memories.  Makes me grateful I am documenting Titus' weekly and monthly photos on Instagram to look back on.

Week 23 - Sewing lots of baby things.  Baby is moving a lot!

Week 24 - Lots of movement.  Starting to get more uncomfortable.

Week 25 - Lots of movement.  Lots of naps!  Hard to get groceries out of the basket!

Week 26 - No room in my belly! Eating very small meals these days!  I want all the fro-yo!

Week 27 - Hands are asleep (the beginning of the never ending carpal tunnel!).  Painting baby's room.  First baby shower this week!

Week 28 - Third trimester is here!  Feeling the pregnancy carpal tunnel strong!  Had a lovely first baby shower!

Week 29 - Feeling more tired and uncomfortable.  Heading to women's retreat!  Took maternity photos!

Week 30 - Got our crib!  Decided we are going to move to Virginia! :( Feeling tired and uncomfortable (I apparently said this every week!).  Hospital tour today!

Week 31 - Brent and I love the baby so much already.  It's pretty amazing how this bump is already changing our lives.

Week 32 - Home stretch!  Getting Titus' room ready!  Finally committed to a name!  And it is getting hot outside!

Week 33 - Saw baby's ultrasound.  A real boy is growing in there!  Only 7 weeks left...I'm going a little crazy!

Week 34 - Getting things ready for Titus - packed my hospital bag, filled out our baby book, and taking classes at the hospital!

Week 35 - 5 weeks to go!  Completed our registries (bought everything we needed left)!  Now we just wait!

Week 36 - The countdown is here!  Took water aerobics at the gym!  Not much room in my belly.  Feeling the baby all the time.

Week 37 - Took our labor class and starting to feel ready.  Officially full term and baby could come any time!

Week 38 - Can't believe we are near the end!  Started sleeping on the couch.  Trying to still keep at it (at the gym).

Week 39 - Last week until due date!  Crazy!  I actually sort of feel ready!!!

Week 40 - Happy due date baby!  You can come now!  Having more painful contractions.  Just waiting...

// We ended up going into the hospital on our due date and our little one was born a few (very long) days later!  You can read the story here.  And see bump photos from weeks 5-22 here.

And just for laughs, I will leave you with this one...

February 20, 2017

This Is Our Life And It's Okay.

I was recently driving home on a particularly warm February day.  The windows were down for the first time since we moved and the wind blew through the wispies of my side bun.  A favorite song was playing in the car and I could see my little boy in the mirror contently looking out at the rolling hills we drove by, occasionally hearing the sound of his little hands playing with a rattle.

I thought to myself, "This is our life.  And it's okay."

This is the second time within the last week that I have felt this way.  And there was a sense of comfort in realizing that I was finding contentment in this season of life - living out in the country away from all the things we once found familiar.

I am finding that I don't really know what home feels like anymore.  And maybe perhaps home doesn't have to feel a certain way.  I am coming to the realization that I may never mimic how I felt back in California but that doesn't mean that I can't find contentment.

While I feel like the same person on the inside, my outside priorities are so different here.  What I once valued and filled my time with is shifting.  It doesn't mean that I no longer care for those things but the drive and passion I have inside of me is being interpreted in different ways.

I am learning to be creative differently.  I am finding out how to be a friend from far away.  And family life is simply about just being together and not about where we are.

Our cross country road trip still lingers in my heart.  It was the beginning of a life where things felt different.  The places we go and the people we meet are so new.  Definitely not bad but something that is taking some time to get used to.

I am questioning so much but in a way that is being opened up to looking at life a little differently.  I know we are right where we are supposed to be which is giving me the freedom to just be and allow this time to shape me as it should.

This is our life.  And it's okay.

February 13, 2017

Before We Moved In: Tour Of Our Virginia Home

It's been three months since we have moved in and I am just now FINALLY getting to posting about our new home!  I cannot even believe it has been three months.  Time seems to fly by while I continue to feel like I move in snail speed.  But that is okay!

Thankfully, though this post is very delayed, at least I took pictures back in November when fall was in full force!  I am amazed, even now, just looking at these pictures again!  The trees are so bare now!  It makes me excited to see what the property will look like come spring.  Our sweet neighbor girl has already told me that she is "pretty sure" the spring blooming tree in front of our house is pink or purple!  I'm crossing my fingers for pink!

Let's get started with the tour!


The home is on two acres with one acre of that is fenced in.  The previous owner had a dog which I am guessing is why the fence is there as most people in the area do not have one.  Coming from our previous love for fences, I really like how it looks and that there is a little more sense of privacy (in combination with the trees).

We have a good sized front yard that is open and takes up the remaining one acre which also includes the woods behind our house.  On each side of the house we have a cute little gate that we can go through.  The blue shed is not only adorable but also very handy.  Currently their is no electrical runnimg out to it and Brent would like to get a door for it.  But we would like to make it a little work shop for him once we get all of our packing boxes out of there!

We are pretty close to the end of our dirt road.  Our street is about half a mile long which leads out to a paved road (and our mailbox).

Both of our large cars just barely fit in the garage - we have to pull in the side windows to get through.  But luckily they do fit for all those chilly winter days.

The landscaping is simple and tastefully done.  I am pretty happy with how things are and look forward to seeing what pops up this spring.

One of my favorite features is the large porch which wraps around one side of the house.

The previous owners left us the swing and chandelier which we love.

The lighting on the exterior of the house are also a great industrial feature.  Of all the houses we looked at, though on the outside they are very similar, this is the one house that stood out as having a similar decorating style to us.

All the exterior doors are painted this blue color. 

I am also finding that I really love having a storm door as it lets in a lot of extra light.  Brent, on the other hand, keeps reminding me it's not very energy efficient!  But he is sweet and still lets me keep the door open.  I told him if we get a door with a window I wouldn't have to open it as much.  I just can't get enough of that extra natural light!


We live in a tri-level house.  The front door takes you to the main floor (technically second floor).  While the back of the house is level with the basement (first floor).  We then have an upstairs from the main living floor (third floor).

Connecting the garage and the kitchen is a mudroom/laundry room and half bath.  This is the only bathroom on this floor (and essentially the bathroom guests would use). 

The view of the mudroom from the kitchen:

The kitchen also helped seal the deal.  Literally the only kitchen with white cabinets in homes that we looked at including brand new houses.  I am so so so so so happy I do not have to paint cabinets!!!  And it is strangely similar (but way nicer) than our previous kitchen.

The kitchen and dining area expands on the backside of the house (more photos to come).  The front of the house has two smaller rooms - a dining and living room.  The stairs going both up and down from the main floor are in the center of the house so the rooms all wrap around them.

Here is a picture of the inside of our garage.  Sorry these are out of order!  But when it takes three months to finally get this post together, I just have to go with it!  No time to rearrange photos!  Our neighbors mentioned that the cabinets in the garage are the original cabinets in the kitchen.  We are grateful how resourceful they were with repurposing them!

Back to the front of the house.  The room with the chandelier was their dining room.  Because our sectional is so large and the living room has tricky walls to work with, we have made the dining room our living room and the living room an office.  This will obviously all make sense when I share how we have everything set up!

The living room unfortunately has no overhead lighting.  I'm not sure why.  But with it being an office, we are currently happy with just a lamp.

View of the room from the kitchen:

And in that same room, a view back into the kitchen/dining space:

Where we have our dining room set up:

View of the kitchen from the dining area:

Me backed up in the corner of the dining area:

View of kitchen and dining area from mud room:

The kitchen has a door to a small porch and stairs that take you down to ground level of the backyard.

From the kitchen is the door down to the basement:


While it is pretty typical that most homes in the area have basements, most were unfinished.  We really wanted to have a finished basement designated as guest quarters as we knew we would have family visiting for a week or more at a time.  We sure do love our family, but everyone having their own space makes visits even more comfortable and enjoyable.  The family that has visited so far all rave at how nice the space is.  We feel really lucky they did such a great job with it.

Apparently the basement had flooded at one point so the carpet is pretty new.  Again, the space wraps around the staircase so this is the large main section of the floor.

And around the corner is a small hallway to a full bath, two closets, and a storage room.

Here is the door that opens up to the backyard from the basement:

The previous owners left their play structure and chicken coop!  We are hoping to maybe get a few chickens come spring.

Here is a view from the brick patio looking up to the porch that comes out from the kitchen:

One of the basement closets:

And the bathroom, which is wonderful and amazing. 

Here is a wide view of the room.  Back door is to the right, bathroom and smaller hallway to the left.


All the bedrooms can be found upstairs.  The master and larger bedroom are at the front of the house.  And the back of the house is a smaller bedroom and two bathrooms.

Here is the smaller bedroom that we are using as another guest bedroom:

And the bigger bedroom we have made into the nursery.  There was debate about putting the nursery in the smaller room but I decided that we spend so much time in there with the baby that I wanted to enjoy the space (and view) on a daily basis.  Down the line if we still live here and have a second child, we would probably switch the rooms.

Below is the bathroom shared by the two rooms (I swear I edited this photo.  It is so dark.  Not sure what my problem was!  Maybe I wanted to make sure you could see the blue paint.).  The pink light fixture makes it very evident two little girls used to live here!  I love pink but that will eventually have to go!

And here is the master:

The master bath was also recently updated.  But of course I will eventually want everything to be white!

View of the master from the bathroom:

View from the other side of the room of the bathroom and door to the hallway.

And a nice walk in closet which sits at the front of the house (hence the window):


To get to the backyard from the main floor, you head out the back door to the porch.

The backyard consists of a nice and wide open grass area.  We have some intense lawn mowing to eventually look forward to!  Those yellow benches surround a cute little brick fire pit.

A view of the brick patio connected to the basement from the upper porch:

And a picture of my feet.  Because - fall, new house, rainy day!  You know.

As I look around from the seat of my desk at our halfway put together house, I am reminded through these photos just how blessed we are to find this home.  We are still trying to figure out where everything goes and how I want to decorate.  But at the end of the day this home is pretty spectacular and exceeded many of our expectations. 

When the days are tough I find joy in our home.  The quiet of the country.  The space to kind of be organized but also kind of be messy.  Our family has already visited and the space for them is comfortable. 

I keep having to remind myself that it was seven years of hardcore decorating and reorganizing to get our home in California to where it was before we left.  So I continue to give myself patience and have to let go of perfection. 

I will try to take some pictures of our home as is to give a better look at it even if I don't feel like it is completely put together!  Maybe that will be my goal for March - get a few things on the walls and then just take pictures! (Don't hold your breath!!!)

Thanks for letting me share a tour of our new(ish) home!  It is so wonderful to be able to share in the excitement of it all with such wonderful readers!  To hopefully many more snapshots to come!

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