Christmas festivities started early this year at Josh’s work party(20’s themed). We are so spoiled and Josh’s sister Whitney watched Lily and J at her house (they had the best time with cousins) while my mom watched Claire and Cooper at our house. It was a late night so I knew my mom could put the 2 littles down to sleep but I knew J and Lily wouldn’t go down as well so they played with cousins.
We had so much fun dressing up, eating yummy food, and playing black jack for chances to win a raffle.
The next week my family got together to celebrate my late grandma Laura Mae like we always do. The kids make gingerbread houses, decorated cookies, and had fun being together. My mom made it a really fun day!
A couple days later we went to Josh’s parents who visited from Singapore(they live their temporarily for work) and we had our traditional Skiaki dinner, devotional, and present exchange. It was such a perfect night together.
The next night(Christmas Eve) we played Bingo with Josh’s mom’s family. It was fun, but we were missing his grandparents who weren’t feeling well.
Later we headed to my moms for dinner, the nativity, and a present exchange.
There’s nothing quite like the feeling I get when my home is decorated for Christmas. It’s magical! I don’t have a ton of decorations, but the ones I have make our home so cozy.
This year Josh did most of the decorating with the kids Thanksgiving morning while I cooked food. It was great!
I did however decorate the Christmas tree. I love it! I take time to make it just so and I don’t let the kids help much. They do get to decorate the smaller tree in our front entry and the tiny one in their room so it balances out right?
Anyways, the other day I came down and most of the bulbs were hanging all on one branch and then I found this gem dangling up near the top.
I couldn’t help but laugh. It was a humbling moment. I put the bulbs back neatly on the tree but I left the gummy worm. It’s a reminder that kids make life sweet. And that Jackson might have a career in decorating…or not😂.
Sorry Cooper. Being baby number 4 your updates will probably not be on the month every month 😬
He’s just a very sweet, sleepy baby so far. He goes with the flow and loves to be held and snuggled.
Bath time is fun as long as I crank up the heat upstairs so your nice and toasty when you get out of the bath and have to get dressed.
He tolerates all the siblings touching, holding, and kissing him non stop.
A few weeks after these pics I took more when he was about 8 weeks.
He now smiles!! Is there anything better??
I wanted to do a short update on my journey after baby #4. I mentioned in this post what has helped me this time around to fight the baby blues. It’s been just about 8 weeks since Cooper’s birth and I am happy to say I haven’t experienced baby blues! Don’t be confused though, I have had PLENTY of rough, overwhelming days but nothing that lasts or looms over me.
I think the number 1 thing that has helped was cleaning up my diet. Turns out, when you eat junk, you tend to feel like junk. If you nourish your body, you tend to feel good. I purchased a meal plan by Fitness Carli while I was pregnant. I started trying to eat better(it took time for me to cut bad habits and I’m still not perfect)and over time I’ve gotten used to making better food choices.
One of my fav lunches: pita with spinach, cheese, turkey, shredded carrots, sauce and veggies on the side(I had carrots too but I ate them before the pic).
The number 2 thing that has helped is having a positive mind set. Whenever I feel down or overwhelmed I try and go over everything in my mind that I’m grateful for. I also like to think about events or a get together I’m looking forward to. This always turns my mood around, if it doesn’t, then a good nap snuggling my babe usually does the trick 😉
I mean, is he not the cutest?!
As always, feel free to ask any questions!
We got our first snow fall 2 days after Thanksgiving. It wasn’t much, just enough for the kids to play in for awhile.
*window glare cuz I wasn’t brave enough to open the door.
A week later we got our first REAL snow fall. Josh and J were out shoveling the driveway so we could make it back up after church.
Each branch of my favorite tree was dusted . I LOVE waking up to snow on the weekend knowing I won’t have to be doing any driving. Josh gladly drives to and from the places we need to go. On good weekends we have no where to go so we turn the fire on and bake delicious food and watch Christmas movies.
We started off the Christmas festivities how we always do…helping my mom set up her Christmas village.
Growing up my job was to set up the village. I LOVED setting up the little scenes with the elves and cutting out white fluff for snow. I’m pretty sure I gave myself this responsibility and wouldn’t allow anyone to help haha but now my mom always saves it for me and my kids.
The last couple of weeks we have also:
Gone to This Is The Place Park to watch J perform in his French choir(he is in a dual immersion elementary school). Josh took work off and we all enjoyed hearing him sing French Christmas songs, but it was FREEZING.
Met Josh by his work one Thursday and had dinner at Seven Brothers(one of the best burgers I’ve ever had) and visited Santa.
Made gingerbread houses with cousins.
Went to the Christmas breakfast our church hosted.
Newborn stage is hard; you’re sleep deprived, nursing every hour or so, burping, diapers, and trying to learn this new sweet little babes likes and dislikes.
BUT I love it. I love the coos, the squeaks, the enormously loud burps that don’t seem possible from such a small babe, and the snuggles. Oh the snuggles are heavenly.
My favorite part is in the quiet of the night when the house is still me and the baby are awake. His eyes are wide open staring up at me and me at him. Not every night is like this, most are a blur of tired nursing and zombie diaper changes. But I can’t help but feel close to my Heavenly Father in those still moments and thank Him for this responsibility of motherhood.
“It is no wonder that Satan has declared war on motherhood. He understands full well that those that rock the cradle can rock his earthly empire. ” Sheri Dew
We celebrated Claire all day yesterday for her 2nd Birthday. Lily struggled letting Claire have the spotlight so it was an…interesting day haha but it ended wonderful and Claire had a lot of fun being spoiled.
Claire is…sassy, smart, playful(LOVES to wrestle) sensitive, snuggly, funny, and so much more. She has a lot of personality and does NOT want help when she’s hurt or frustrated. She has to figure it out on her own or she will yell at you haha.
She loves her siblings, food, Minnie Mouse, Poppy, and Elsa. She doesn’t like getting dressed, or Santa Clause(see below pic).
She loves making us laugh and says “baby brudda(Brother)” and Coopa(Cooper) so cute! She also says “not me!” Whenever I say it’s bedtime.
Every kid at 2 years becomes a daddy’s girl/boy and she’s no exception. She is obsessed with Josh(I mean we all are, he’s the best) and will sit and snuggle with him as soon as he’s home.
We celebrated as a family, had one of her fav dinners, cupcakes, and presents. She loves her Minnie Mouse car to ride around on in the house.
You can read Claire’s birth story here and her 1st bday here.
I get this question a lot so I thought I’d share here; how do you get in a work out with 4 kids, 3 being 3yrs old and under?
First, I have always stayed very active during pregnancy. Very active meaning cardio 3 days a week and strength 3 days a week. Some weeks I take off, but I try and do SOMETHING 4-6 days a week while pregnant. I think that has helped SO much in my recovery.
Recovery after each baby has been different. The key is to listen to your body. After all of my kids I try and take walks shortly after just to get moving, it’s such a relief and a nice way to break up the day if I can get outside.
I’m a creature of habit, so our days start the same 90% of the time and my kids know I either work out before they wake up, while they’re eating breakfast, or if I woke up late after I take J to school. With a newborn I try and get as much sleep as I can so until he’s on a predictable schedule my work out time varies.
The girls mimicking my burpees😂
The point: my kids know I workout sometime in the morning. If they’re awake they’re usually right there with me doing their version of the workout, watching a show, or eating breakfast. I try and do 30-40 min of activity. I’m lucky enough to have a set of weights and a treadmill at home so its easy for me to squeeze a workout in when I can.
I would say I’m able to workout with 4 kids because I make it a priority and I have equipment at home, I think it would be tough if I had to get to a gym everyday. I found my treadmill on KSL and Josh got me weights and a bench for Christmas one year. I love doing Kayla Itsines BBG program and I’ve been following(not perfectly 😬) a meal plan.
I am not by any means perfect, but this is what works for me. I love talking about fitness, so feel free to ask anything I may have left out.
My sister in law Whitney is a very talented photographer. Every time I’ve had a baby she has graciously come to the hospital to shoot some precious newborn shots that a cherish forever.
I love having those photos from the hospital even though I really dislike staying there. Don’t get me wrong, there are some great perks, like having food brought to me at every meal. But honestly I can’t wait to get home to my people and my own bed. So, I’m glad I have these great shots of me and Coopers 24 hour stay.
The timing couldn’t have been better. Whitney was there when her mom brought my kids to meet Cooper. I love the photo of them seeing him for the first time. There’s just something so special about a new baby in the family❤️