Two Month Check In

Emaline Noel has been part of our family for two whole months! Amazing. We cannot imagine life without her. It’s always crazy how fast you adapt to a new way of life, quickly forgetting that it was ever any different.

I am constantly asked by friends, preschool moms, family etc how is it with three??

Well to paraphrase one of our favorite comedians, Jim Gaffigan, just imagine that you’re drowning. And then somebody hands you a baby. Click here to watch his standup routine on parenting. It is hilarious😃

But actually, sometimes I feel like my response must seem unbelievable. Because by and large life is great! We have easily found our new norm as a family of five. And similarly to adding a second, the newborn is the easy one. Our life was crazy before having Emaline. I wouldn’t say it has gotten much crazier with adding a third. ( note: I’m confident this response will change as Emaline begins to move around etc but for now I relish in the ease of a non-mobile infant).

Emaline has easily fit into our family. She is very laid back. Often content laying on the floor watching and listening to her older sisters playing. She sleeps anywhere. I truly think the louder it is the better she does! If she does have a fussy time it’s in the evening once the older girls are in bed. But even her fussy times are short lived and easily managed. She continues to be a rock star sleeper, now sleeping in her own room, she gives us 6-7hr stretches and even a handful of 8hours. Honestly she can be a better sleeper then MJ at times😉. She also naps extremely well, probably the best of all three at such an early age. During the day she’ll take 2-3 hour naps and we have shifted from sleeping in bouncer/car seat/floor to primarily in her crib. Although at least 1 or 2 naps may be elsewhere. In the last few weeks Emaline has even began to smile. Such a joy to see. Liesel and Moira often make it their mission to get as many smiles as possible ( we thought MJ had it bad with just Liesel. Poor Emaline is loved to death by two big sisters)!

The older girls love on their baby sis and have continued to adjust quite well to a new member in the family. Moira was sick this past week and thus demanded much more mommy time. Since Em is so laid back, I was able to devote much of my attention to MJ. The girls are always looking out for baby Emaline. Wondering where she is at all times. Moira is often kissing her and saying Emaline is so so cute!. Liesel is still a little over zealous with her kisses, but has become such a good helper- locating diapers, pacis, fetching burp clothes etc. What a difference this time around!

Now, don’t let me mislead you. It is not by any means easy with three, it just isn’t much harder than having two! I was talking to a dear friend the other day, who has two little girls just a few months younger than L and MJ, and she said don’t tell me how easy having a third is so that I go and have one and find that it’s the hardest ever! You made me think it was easy with two and it’s hard! touché. It is hard. However, for me, going from Zero to one kid was truly the hardest. Once we had already changed our lives to fit in a baby, adding to that number does not compare. Especially since our girls are so close in age ( 3.5, ,2 and 2mths). We are used to living life on less sleep, we are used to running after toddlers and changing diapers. Life is really not much crazier, honest.

Probably the hardest thing to do with three little ones is getting.out.the.door! Seriously, it’s ridiculous how time consuming this task can be. A lot of this is due to the young ages of our girls. Liesel (3.5) is not quite independent enough. She can put on her pants- but not her shirt, she can put on her coat- but not zip it up, she can get in her car seat and buckle the top buckle- but not the bottom… Moira (just 2) is still needy in all areas, and Emaline needs everything + nurses. It never fails, Eric and I will be getting all the girls ready to get out the door when I look at the time and realize well, I might as well feed Em now. Eric’s face is usually priceless. hurry up and…wait! However, once out the door life is easy! Our girls love getting out and about whether a short trip to Target or Barnes and Noble, or a longer one to Conner prairie or the Library. They love seeing people and having a change of scenery. (So do I).

A few other areas that have been more challenging. Not necessarily harder, just in need of more planning are: daily chores, alone time, having one on one time with each girl and date nights. With two kids I had my routine of when I would do each of my chores each day. Now that time is usually filled with nursing or changing diapers. I have had to put off some chores and work harder to fit them in each day. I have also not resumed my early morning wake ups. I am hoping to start doing these again soon, I miss my alone time each morning. It is also very important to Eric and I to spend one on one time with each girl ( primarily L and MJ since they are more aware). Our weeks just fly and it is hard to manage time on the weekend trying to fit in family time, alone time and alone time with each girl. We are still working at getting a system in place. Date nights aside from a few times when my mom was in town, have been non existent. We are hoping to start going out just the two of us again, but for now we enjoy our date nights in with a glass of wine and a nice dinner. It helps that the older girls are in bed by 7:30!

highlights of Em’s second month
started smiling

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met Grandpa Keith and Aunt Jen

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Baptized

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moved into her own room

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two month doctor visit: 13#3oz and 24.5in! Growing like crazy

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And a comparison photo of all three girls at 2mths. Who do you think she looks like?

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Tinkerbell Birthday Cake

In January MJ was adamant about having a Tinkerbell birthday. I think this is due to the girls Halloween costumes

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Pinterest had some great ideas but a lot of them involved fondet frosting or cupcakes. Finally after much searching I came across an awesome blog post. The cake was exactly what I invisioned and I felt it was one I could probably due. I was extremely pleased with how it turned out!

For the cake I cheated and used Betty Crocker’s, rainbow chip ( not to be confused with pillsbury funfetti). Rainbow chip is an all time fav! Using two 8inch round pans I baked the cake. In addition I made another box of the mix and put half in my glass Pyrex mixing bowl and the remainder in cupcake tins.

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After a cutting a whole in the middle of the cake, I slid Tinkerbell in the cake and frosted her into place. Using buttercream frosting I frosted the outside. I let the cake sit overnight and then finished the decorating in the morning. Here is the finished cake,

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We kept the cake hidden until the party. Moira loved it and yelled Tinkerbell when the cake appeared.

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Moira Jane turns 2

I’m having a hard time wrapping my mind around the fact that Moira is turning 2!! I keep thinking, last year at this time…she was just learning to walk, just learning to say mama and dada. Now she is speaking in sentences, running around, keeping up with her older sister, and taking care of her baby sister.

From the moment Moira entered our family our lives were blessed. She was such an easy baby. Just a joy. Her little smiles came so freely and her sweet spirit shined through daily.

This past year has been one of many changes for MJ. She started sharing a room, moved to a new house, gave up her beloved paci, and welcomed a new baby sister. Moira has adapted easily to all of these changes.

I cannot imagine a world with out my sweet MJ. Her smile brightens anyone’s day. Although she is quiet, she is strong willed. She is a girl who knows what she wants, and is not afraid to say no. Here are a few of Moira’s favorites:

song: twinkle twinkle little star and Jesus loves Me
color: pink
toy: baby dolls. Borderline obsessed
food: granola and hummus sandwiches
book: Where the Wild Things Are ( read multiple times daily, she could recite it by heart)
activity Conner prairie! she asks to go every day

I cannot wait to see what this next year brings, Moira Jane. This past year has been the best! You are a blessing to our family. Mommy and daddy are so proud of the girl you are becoming. We love you with all our heart and thank God he chose us to be your parents!

Happy birthday my sweet Moira Jane!

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Soft Pretzels

Well, we had another snow day over here! I’m losing count as to what number we are on… Luckily we were able to get out and play in the 8+ inches we got! I wanted to think of an activity the girls and I could do. One that would be fun and keep us warm on this cold+snowy day. Pretzels seemed like the perfect plan.

This recipe was fairly simple, we had all the ingredients in our pantry and it made for some great hands on learning! Definitely give it a try. The pretzels were delicious giving Auntie Em’s a run for her money!!

ingredients
4 tsp active dry yeast
1.5 cups warm water
1 tsp sugar

5 cups flour
1/2cup sugar
1.5 tsp salt
1 TB olive oil

2 cups hot water
1/4 cup baking soda
Kosher salt

Melted butter

In a small bowl mix warm water, yeast and sugar. Let stand 5-10 minutes until bubbly.

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Meanwhile in large mixing bowl combine flour, sugar, salt and oil. Make a well in the middle and add yeast mixture. Using your stand mixer and dough hook attachment, mix until moistened ( you may need to add 1-2T of water if too dry). Next, knead for 5 minutes or 7 minutes if kneading by hand. We did a little of both and the girls LOVED that they got to use their hands😉

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Lightly oil another bowl and place dough ball in it, cover with a towel. Let rise for an hour until dough doubles in size.

While dough is rising, mix baking soda and hot water. Preheat oven to 450 degrees. Place risen dough on a cutting board and mold into a long log shape. Cut into 12 equal pieces. Then let the creating begin!!

The girls and I made traditional pretzel shapes but also made letters and shapes. Dip pretzels into baking soda water and place on a parchment paper lined baking sheet. Sprinkle with kosher salt and cook for 8- 10 minutes.

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Emaline did her part and slept in the ring sling!

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Once pretzels are finished brush with melted butter. And there you have it! The perfect snack for a cold and snowy day, enjoy!! We will definitely be making these again.

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