Saturday Road Trip

I mentioned in an earlier post, that we were planning to have a simplified holiday season. I was worried that we wouldn’t be able to hold to our word and we would end up scheduling too many things like normal but looking back on the past weeks, I’m happy to report that we really did do things different this year. Maybe it’s because I’m pregnant and literally have no energy to do literally anything (ha!) or maybe it’s because we intentionally planned it that way… but regardless, it worked out really well.  We didn’t want every day on our calendar to be filled in with scheduled events and places we had to be. Instead we wanted to be able to wake up and plan fun spontaneous things to do with the boys, like tobogganing and baking and going on little day trips. Of course we wanted to spend lots of time with family and friends but we aimed to do that more spontaneously as well and it worked out great. We were able to say yes when friends invited us over for dinner the evening before, have a spontaneous games night with other friends and plan a last minute day trip to see family last weekend.

Ron went back to work after New Years but the boys and I still felt like we were on holidays last week because there was no pre-school or anything else going on really so long lazy days for us is how the week went. This past Saturday, our friends Kara and Pete asked us to join them on a trip to St. Jacobs. We love this little mennonite town and since we didn’t have anything planned, we were excited to go along. It was such a fun morning, checking out cute bakery’s, this amazing home decor shop where there’s tons of neat show rooms to look at, and of course the farmers market. It was the best way to end off the holidays and I went to remember this season and vow to every Christmas after just like it.

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Thanks so much for reading!

natalie-xo-1

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First Trimester

My pregnancy with the twins (strangely enough) was a breeze. I kept waiting for the dreaded pregnancy symptoms and they never showed up. I absolutely loved being pregnant during first and second trimester. My skin was the softest and clearest it had ever been, my hair was amazing… I had so much energy. I never experienced morning sickness and other then not being able to drink coffee for a few weeks, I didn’t have many aversions either. I guess I was one of those “lucky people” that round and so I totally assumed it would be the same for me again. Boy, was I wrong. I’m starting to think God let me off super easy the first time because He knew what was ahead for me. Or maybe it’s a girl this time?! Thoughts?! Who knows.

All that to say, this pregnancy has been ROUGH you guys. I’m talking being awake for 3 hours in the morning, doing one errand with the twins and feeling like I ran a marathon. I just want to nap constantly (not a near possibility with two very active 3 year olds), I feel nauseous constantly and I’ve had a few cases of the worst heartburn I’ve ever experienced.  Not to mention I’ve had aversions to literally everything healthy (couldn’t even think of stomaching raw veggies or a salad for a number of weeks there). Give me all the white carbs please …pasta, french fries, bagels (ugh!) is pretty much all I’ve wanted to eat…not like me at all! Oh and SWEETS! Everything sweet! eeeeek! First trimester of this pregnancy has not been good to me friends, but I guess it was about time I experienced what most women do huh?

Oh and another thing to mention about your second, third, fourth pregnancies. It’s no joke when they say your bump pops SO early after you’ve already had kids! I was horrified to see how big I was one morning at just around 8 weeks along.  I wasn’t sure how I was going to hide it and alternated between my two baggiest sweaters for the next 3 weeks. We announced at 10 and half weeks because I was feeling so self conscious about my expanding body. Ok ok, also because we were super excited and couldn’t keep it to ourselves any longer! But mostly the first.

While it’s been a rough start, I really, truly couldn’t be more grateful and thankful to Jesus for this amazing life growing inside of me. I shared about our miscarriage a year and half ago. It was a very difficult thing to experience. You just never think it will happen to you, at least I didn’t, until I realized how common it really is. I guess because I carried two healthy baby boys to term, I figured my body could easily do it again. I was nearly 8 weeks along when it happened and it was the hardest thing. We didn’t try again for a whole year and half. I just didn’t feel ready and there was a period where we really questioned whether we wanted to have any more or not. I was also scared. Scared it would happen again. Scared to experience the heartache all over again. But this past fall, after several long discussions and a lot prayer, Ron and I decided we were ready to start trying. There was a message that spoke to my heart deeply at church back in the Spring. It reminded that my children are not really mine, they are His. He has given me such an important responsibility and the biggest honour of being their mom…being able to love them, nurture them, and raise them. But they are ultimately His. While this wasn’t a new concept for me, (we did dedicate the twins to the Lord a few months after they were born) it was just the reminder I needed. It truly is hard to come to terms with the fact that my babies aren’t all mine when I think about it.  But at the same time, it’s so freeing and it was key for me in placing my trust in His plans for each of my children’s lives, even any future children that weren’t born yet. It wasn’t long after that I began to feel a real peace about growing our family again.

This sweet gift growing inside me has been covered in prayer from the very start of it’s being. There were many nights those first weeks when Ron and I laid hands on my belly praying for this rainbow babe and thanking Jesus for it. We still do.  So, here we are, almost through first trimester.  There are still days when fear grabs ahold of me but I just keep giving it back to Him, trusting that He is in control and His plans are good. 

For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the LORD, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future. Jeremiah 29:11 

Love that verse.

I’m looking forward to second trimester, hoping that I gain even a little bit of energy back and can eat a good salad again! I’ve started to excercise in the mornings again (I just had no energy to the past 4 weeks or so). Just walking for now but hope to get back into running soon and a low impact workout routine. The twins are so super excited. They kiss and hug my belly every morning and night before they go to sleep and they keep asking me if it’s ready to come out yet? Sorry boys, it’s gonna be a longgg wait. haha!

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Thanks so much for reading you guys.

natalie-xo-1

 

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Red and Green

Bryson’s favourite color is green and Skyler’s is red. It makes things easy because everything normally comes in these two colors so when we buy them new things, there is no arguing or questioning as to who get’s what. It also makes things fun this time of year! Today I got them a vanilla dip donut to split while I did some errands and the sprinkles are currently, of course, red and green. So it’s the best thing ever to them, that the store would do up the donuts in their favourite colors.

These adorable tops with the cutest elbow patches are from Os and Oakes and such a fun colorful addition to the twins fairly neutral wardrobe. They wear them all the time! It’s the perfect Christmas gift for any kiddo’s in your life you still need to buy for! You can grab one here! mnt_1013mnt_1001

Fun fact: See that tiny little birth mark under Skyler’s right eye?! That’s the only way most people can tell them apart!

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Thanks so much for reading! Happy Wednesday!

natalie-xo-1

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Advent Calendar

I remember I was all excited to do an advent calendar for the twins when they were just a year old. They were much too young to know what was going on though and we maybe got to day 4 and then sort of gave up on the idea. Last year, we never got around to it, and this year as I wrote about here, we’re really wanting to simplify the season and not stress ourselves out with feeling like we have to do anything. But we also want to solidify some fun family christmas traditions and after brainstorming a list of simple activities (most of which don’t need any prep at all and alot of which I got from my good friend Sophie who is the queen of the advent calendar), we decided the advent calendar was something we were going to do this year. If we miss a day, or have to modify an activity, we’ll just roll with it.

Our calendar uses four supplies. So easy! You could throw it together tonight if you wanted to!

  • a stick
  • yarn
  • brown envelopes (from Michaels)
  • sticky advent numbers (from Michaels)

The idea is that the boys will open an envelope together each morning and there will be a written activity for them to do that day.

 

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Here’s what we came up with:

Dec 1 – Christmas P.J.s! and a tasty treat!

Dec. 2 – Make paper snowflakes

Dec. 3 – Get our Christmas tree and decorate it!

Dec. 4 – Holiday party with friends!

Dec. 5 – Making a blanket fort, to snuggle up with a flash light and christmas books

Dec. 6 – Make Marshmallow snowmen

Dec. 7 – Make a christmas paper garland

Dec 8 – baking gingerbread cookies

Dec. 9 – Christmas movie night and popcorn!

Dec. 10 – Visit Santa!

Dec. 11 – Make a paper nativity scene

Dec. 12 – make christmas cards for family and friends

Dec. 13 – Drive around and look at Christmas lights with hot chocolate.

Dec. 14 –  Make a christmas dough ornament.

Dec. 15 – Make a gingerbread house!

Dec. 16 – Christmas movie night and popcorn!

Dec. 17 – Family Christmas Party!

Dec. 18 – Bake christmas treats for neighbours and friends.

Dec. 19 – Make Christmas play-dough.

Dec. 20 – Walk through our downtown park to look at the lights!

Dec. 21 – Decorate a christmas tree for the animals.

Dec. 22 – Write a note of appreciation and draw a picture for a family member

Dec. 23 – Make reindeer food to sprinkle in the yard.

Dec. 24 – Make a birthday cake for Jesus.

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The Ara Satchel by Eve Cork

Being a work from home mama, I’ve been looking for a chic and stylish bag for quite some time now that would serve as a multi purpose work/purse/diaper bag. When my Ara Satchel from Eve Cork arrived in the mail last week, I was so excited to find it was just that!

Eve is a line of sustainably, eco-friendly cork handbags and fashion accessories that are ethically handmade with care in Portugal. Their products are made with the environment and greater well-being of our planet in mind, and that’s something I’m definitely proud to be a part of!

The twins have been potty trained since the spring which thankfully eliminates a ton of stuff that I need to lug around with me but I always like to have at least one change of clothes, as well as some multi purpose wipes, their sippy cups, and of course my typical purse contents (sunglasses, gum, wallet, cell phone etc.,)  On the mornings when the twins are in pre-school, I generally take my laptop to a coffee shop to hammer out e-mails or a blog post so I love that I can totally fit in there and not have to take out everything else or switch bags.

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The Eve Krypt wallet is lightweight and durable and has a magnetic snap closure, three bill compartments, twelve card holders, premium natural cork and a full zip coin compartment. I love it! mnt_0877mnt_0824-1mnt_0886

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There’s a ton of colors and styles to chose from on the Eve Cork site and a purse or wallet would make a great Christmas gift so head over and check em out!  Thanks so much for reading!

xo

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