Pumpkin Pickin’

Today we went to The Farm House in Ellerslie to let the kids pick our a few pumpkins. We had so much fun!

Eli was a fan of the pumpkins. He picked out a little one and kept it with him the whole way home. He did keep trying to eat it and saying “Mmmm…yummy!” ha

Rhett was more interested in the chickens and rooster they had there. Of course he was terrified of them, but he kept returning to their coop to be frightened so that’s progress. (Ha)

Chris thought it would be funny to put a massive pumpkin in Rhett’s lap…

And he was right. (Ha) Rhett’s eyes started popping out of his head!

Babygirl was a fan of staring at any and everyone with her stank face, and also trying to eat the grass.

She also saw her brothers go through the hay bale maze and when we let her down to crawl she headed straight for it and made it all the way through!

She’s a feisty one! And also my cute lil punkin. (Ha)

I really wanted some family pictures but as you can tell from the faces of my children…this was a BAD idea. I mean, how dare I? (Haha)

This one was take “pre-meltdown” so I at least have one decent picture…

And here’s a picture of Chris getting way too excited over a tiny pumpkin. (Ha) Love you babe!

1, 2, 3, Number Themed Birthday Party

I had the BEST time planning the kids’ birthday party this year for several reasons…but the main one was this was the first time in 3 years I hadn’t just given birth to a baby. I wasn’t sleep deprived or on pain meds, so this was awesome! (Ha)

When I was trying to find a theme that would work for all three of them, the only thing I could think of was a numbers themed party. That way it was gender neutral and also simple.

I was surprised at the lack of ideas on Pinterest, so I had to actually use my brain (LAAAAAME). It took me way longer than it should have to come up with something that rhymed with 1, 2, 3…but I love how it turned out.

Also, if you are ever wanting to get gold foil balloons for a party…go a few days in advance. They didn’t have what I needed 3 days before the party, and I lucked out on finding all three numbers in gold the night before the party. I got these at Party City and I love the quality of them. I just wish I had planned more beforehand so I didn’t have to stress out and drive through so much 5:00 traffic to get them. (Ha)

Mrs. Freda, my mother in law, made the most amazing smash cakes for them! They were as pretty as they were delicious. She also brought them all the way from South Carolina and not one of them was damaged…I don’t know how she did it! I would have ruined them completely if I’d had to transport them. (Ha)

I am so thankful for all of my wonderful family that helped celebrate our sweet babies. You know the saying, “It takes a village to raise a child?” Well, its so true. Not only would I have not been able to throw this party without them, but I couldn’t do this life without them.

Whether it was my mom and Carley taking the kids for the afternoon so I could clean for the party, or all of the countless times everyone has babysat or kept the kids over night so Chris and I could recharge, they help me be a better mother with their encouragement and selfless love for me and Chris and the kids. I love you guys!

This was Rhett’s face when I said, “If you smile, you’ll get to have some cake!” (Ha) His “cheese” face cracks me up. This boy’s joy is infectious.

Eli was not so sure about this whole smash cake thing. He always seems to think we are trying to poison him whenever we give him a new food to try. (Ha) But he took a few bites after this picture and actually liked it! Yay!

Elliot ate her cake from the start, but she didn’t try to look happy about it, that’s for sure.

The drink station with mason jars and ice to refresh yourself with sweet tea or lemon water (I used doTERRA lemon oil and it was soooo good!).

Mrs. Freda tirelessly cut out fruit and cheese with numbered cookie cutters, and I forgot to get a picture of the cheese. But they were all so cute!

We also forgot to put these out during the party, but it made for nice refreshing snack once we had cleaned up the party! (Ha)

I love my firstborn…I cannot believe he is three! You are so loved, Rhett.

Oh little Elijah…your momma loves you SO much. I am so thankful for the two years we have been blessed with you! Can’t wait for many more.

And you, my crazy baby girl, our family wouldn’t be complete without your adorable sassiness. It seems like just yesterday you were born…I can’t believe it’s been a year.

Chris and I are so blessed. The Lord has been way too good to us, to entrust us with these three precious lives. Our cup overflows with good good things. Happy 1, 2, 3, to our sweet kiddos!

A Day In The Life: 2017

So I recently went back and re-read my previous day-in-the-life post and whew! Things have changed since then. And honestly that makes me a little happy. (Ha) I do not miss all of the early feedings and pumping a bazillion times a day!

I thought it would be fun to do a follow up day to compare what has changed and as a way for me to remember this season when it is gone.

So with that being said, here was our day yesterday!

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9:00 am: Get the kids up

Just like my last post talked about, my kids do not not normally sleep this late, but I try not to get them up until 9. We are all battling a cold/stomach virus this week, so they were all actually asleep at 8:30 and started cooing and talking while I was making breakfast.

I give the boys cereal and fruit, and Rhett gets oatmeal. I feed Elliot her food and give her a bottle, then put her in her exersaucer to play (Also keeping her upright while her food settles keeps her from spitting up orange baby food all over the rug. Ha).

I have started playing a Christian playlist on Spotify while we all eat breakfast together and the boys love it! It’s a cheerful way to get the morning started and it warms my heart to see them slowly learning the words.

While the boys finish up eating, I run the vacuum so that Elliot doesn’t get into all of the crumbs they have dropped. It’s a new thing for them not to cry when I vacuum and I am SO thankful! I could never find a good time to do it because it traumatized them when they were awake and then woke them up when they were asleep. Sooooo…dirty floors it was! Ha

9:45 Playtime

We all hang out in the living room and read books, push the walker around/run over baby sister with said walker, and watch a show (Little Baby Bum on Netflix. Two words: life. Saver.).

Eli has a cough, so I try to diffuse some oils to help him with that. Trying to keep him still and rest his little body is a difficult task!

Rhett dropped his toys in the toilet, and that was a first for us. So I put them in the kitchen sink to run through the dishwasher later. While I was cleaning out the toilet, Eli got into the diffuser I mentioned earlier and spilled it. Elliot was screaming during all of this. (Ha)

11:00 make lunch

I make sandwiches for the boys with goldfish and Pediasure for Eli (come on and gain weight baby boy!). I feed Elliot another bottle.

11:30 Chris comes home for lunch

Best part of my day. đŸ™‚

He helps me lay them all down, and then we fix lunch and watch The Office.

12:30-1:30 watch tv

Normally I do something fun, like decorate or work on projects during this time, but since I’m sick, I watched The Office the whole time. (Ha)

1:30 Elliot wakes up

I change her diaper, and let her play on the floor.

2:45 Boys wake up

I fix snacks and drinks and we play and watch a show. It’s a very calm slow day due to them feeling under the weather.

I feed Elliot a bottle and lay her down.

3:45 Lay Eli back down

4:45 Chris gets home

Chris goes into work at 7 at his new job so he is supposed to get to come home at 4, but most days it’s closer to 5 and sometimes 6. He’s a hard worker but I’m a needy wife, so I miss him!

5:00 Make dinner and get Elliot and Eli up

I start making dinner while Chris plays with the kids. Chris feeds Elliot and makes some chicken for the boys since the tacos we are having aren’t very kid friendly. (Ha)

6:00 Clean Up

Chris plays with the kids while I do the dishes and vacuum again. I clean their high chairs and trays to get prepared for the next day.

6:15 Brush the boys teeth

6:30 Bedtime for boys

6:45 Feed Elliot a bottle and lay her down

7:00 Chill with my man until we go to bed around 9:30

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And that was our day! For any of you new moms out there or veteran mom’s who have recently had another child, it’s amazing how quickly the seasons change and yet feel like they last a lifetime!

If you are in the midst of a crazy and chaotic season with your babies, take heart! Although it might not feel like it, they will become more independent and it will get better.

My kids are still very needy and aren’t all that independent, but they are learning! And that encourages me so much! I can’t even imagine a day when they can feed themselves and get in and out of the car by themselves! (Ha) But I know it’s coming!

Looking back on my first day-in-the-life post, I actually saw how far they’ve come. We’ve all changes a lot in just a few months!

So let’s take heart, be encouraged that it won’t always be like this, and scoop up those sweet babies! Let’s savor every season, even the hard ones!

Sidenote: Our daily diaper count went down from 17 to 10. There’s a praise right there!

New Year, New Rhythms.

As I’ve been spending time evaluating this new year and what goals the Lord is showing me and wanting me to work towards, I can’t help but think back on what I posted last year.
While so much is the same…lots of messes and chaos and little people who need me, I can’t help but sigh and say a thank you prayer at how far the Lord has brought me.

Last year, I gave birth to my third child, we listed and sold our home in SC, we moved to Columbus, GA and relocated three times within 6 weeks of being down here.

The Lord provided a beautiful home for us here in Columbus and for the first time in several years I don’t feel like life is “on hold” in anticipation of a big event. Like moving, or having another baby.

So this year I was actually able to set some goals and think through what the Lord has for me this year.

This is my first year using Lara Casey’s #powersheets and I LOVE THEM. For someone like me who always has about 47 different things going on in my head, the Power Sheets helped me to quiet the noise and figure out what matters to me.

So as I was searching my heart and trying to narrow down what 2017 should look like, the Lord kept revealing a common theme for me. My family. My home. My children. My husband.

I felt Him tugging on my heart to be present in my home.

For those of you who don’t know me, I am a Starter. I am all about a project. Let’s do it. Let’s plant those seeds, start that ministry, help whoever needs help. Let’s throw some dynamite into the mess and shake things up.

However, I am not so great at finishing things.

I lack endurance in those projects. I get overwhelmed and want to go start something new. I like the adrenaline rush at the beginning.

And yes, I realize this is not a great thing. It’s a huge flaw of mine, and it is something I feel like the Lord is bringing into the light this year. He wants me to endure and to cultivate. He wants me to be faithful.

So my word of the year is nurture.

I love the definition of nurture –

“the process of caring for and encouraging the growth or development of someone or something.”

Nurturing doesn’t happen overnight. It is a time consuming process. Sooooo…I ain’t so good at nurturing. (Ha) But the Lord has shown me that marriage and motherhood are the perfect tools He is using to cultivate those things in me.

I thought at the start of this year that my calendar and planner would be full of volunteering at the homeless shelter, crisis pregnancy center, or church. I thought we would most likely lead a bible study of some kind in our home or lead a small group. And these things may happen at some point in the year!

But the Lord has been calming my heart and showing me that when I am busy “doing things for Him,” a lot of times I feel resentment towards the things that get in the way of that…like my children. As my focus goes outward, my frustration grows towards them.

So I feel like this year, for this season, the Lord wants me to nurture my children. He wants me to be present. To listen to the little stories. To read the books. To answer the questions. To sing songs. To change diapers. To teach them about the Lord. To cultivate in their hearts obedience and kindness. To be all in.

He wants me to nurture my marriage. To put down my phone and listen to my husband when he talks to me. To go on dates with Chris. To pray for Chris. To love him to the best of my ability.

So this is what my heart for this year is. To not just plant the seeds, but to water, weed, water again, cultivate and prune the things God is growing in my life. I want to desire and look to the harvest. Knowing that my toil is not in vain in the Lord.

I’d love to hear what the Lord wants for your 2017! Is it a year of planting or growing for you? Comment below or email me some of your goals for this year.

(Note: Please know that I am not saying we should not serve or be involved in church or ministries. Nothing could be further from the truth. And as believers we are called to do these things. However, when I put more priority and importance on those things over my own family, that is where the problem is. And that is what the Lord has shown me I have a tendency to do. Just wanted to clarify. Ha)

Healing Hazel Teething Necklace

 
Little Miss Elliot has started teething this past week and it has been suuuuuuper fun. (ha) I was hesitant to give her teething tablets due to recent studies coming out about them causing seizures. I used them with both of my boys, they helped a ton and they had no symptoms like that, but I didn’t want to risk it.

My normally easy going and happy baby was SO grouchy, and Tylenol and Motrin were not helping her much. She wasn’t sleeping and she cried most of the day. So I was at my wit’s end of what to do or how to help her.

I was in a store one day and happened to see these amber teething necklaces by Healing Hazel at the check out, and bought one out of desperation.

I put it on her when she woke up from her first nap and by the end of the day I could tell a slight difference. In the next few days she was back to her bubbly self! It was incredible.

She is still drooling like a crazy animal and gnawing on everything she can get her hands on, but she seems to be less irritable. It brought relief to her and to her momma! Knowing she’s not in constant pain makes me SO happy.

Healing Hazel Teething Necklace
Healing Hazel Teething Necklace

Since I myself have witnesses how well these necklaces work, I cannot recommend Healing Hazel teething necklaces enough. I’ve been super impressed with how well they work. I purchased the Raw Honey necklace.

With that being said, I know several people who are hesitant to try them because they are afraid their baby will strangle itself with the necklace, so here are a few guidelines for you if you are wanting to purchase an amber necklace.

  • Make sure there is a two finger space between the baby’s neck and the necklace.
  • The necklace should never reach past the chin.
  • Take it off during naps and bedtime

Elliot cannot even reach her necklace with her hands, and most of the time it is covered up by her double chin. (ha) I had to pull it forward for the pictures so you could see it, but normally its tucked away in her chunky baby deliciousness.

She wears her necklace all of the time, and I choose to let her sleep in it. I know she cannot reach it to choke herself and it’s not tight on her neck at all. It is always your call as the parent though. Only do what you feel at peace with.

Healing Hazel Teething Necklace
Healing Hazel Teething Necklace

I am super excited to have found this great company and this product that works. And I am excited to partner with them today and offer 15% off of your purchase! Just use the code COURTNEY for 15% off!

That’s:

coupon code: COURTNEY

for 15% off your purchase.

I’d love to hear your feedback on any of you who use/will use these necklaces! Leave them in the comments.

Home Sweet Temporary Home

 
It’s been almost a week since we moved to Columbus! At the rate this week has crept by it feels more like a month. (ha) It has been quite the adjustment for our little family, but I think we are starting to find our rhythm as much as we can during this transitional time.

Chris has been really enjoying his new job and loves the people he will be working with. It’s just overwhelming for him at times trying to soak in all of the new information. Like drinking from a fire hose… (ha) I have no doubt he will catch on quickly, lil smarty pants.

I definitely underestimated the difficulty of having three small children in a hotel room. Before we got here I was like “Oh it’ll be a fun adventure! Think of the memories we will make!”

WRONG. More like, let’s hang on and try to survive the next few weeks and hope we all forget them soon. (ha)

There is just NO SPACE.

We are all over each other, all day long. I’m used to trying to get things done with at least one child attached to my leg, but now the space is so small I drag the other two along with me, whether they want to come or not. (you think I’m kidding…)

And with most of them being on different sleep schedules and nap times, its a miracle that any of them get sleep.

I’m thankful there is a small kitchen in here though, it would be SO hard to have to get take-out or haul all of us to a restaurant every night.

I have remind myself of that when our rooms smell continually of hamburger patties and essential oils. (ha)

One of the BEST perks of being here though is having my family 3 minutes down the road. I think we’ve all seen each other every day since we moved here. We had dinner with my cousin and mom last night and the day before my sister came and hung out with us after work.

It’s such a blessing to just do life together. I’ve missed that.

It’s funny how when I was growing up, I so looked forward to being independent and having “my own life.” You know, doing adult things. And now that I’m an adult, all I want is my family back in my life. (ha)

Only 11 days until our apartment is ready…which will have THREE BEDROOMS. (*cue angelic voices singing*) And then we’ll have two months in that until (Lord willing) we find and move into a house.

I am soooo ready to be settled in our new place…I miss decorating and “nesting.” (no I’m not pregnant again, calm down.) But I am trying my hardest to enjoy this time and let the Lord teach me the lessons He wants me to learn.