Friday, February 16, 2018

That Friday Post

Happy Weekend Y'all!!  We've had ourselves a busy week over here on the farm.  Finnley hasn't gotten a proper nap since Monday...all other naps have taken place in the car and thankfully she has adapted well!  It's hard to believe that she is going to be TWO in just 2 months!  We're fast approaching my favorite age (minus the potty training - which has already begun) and I am just thrilled to see how she thrives through this stage (hopefully less crying...).


As usual we celebrated our Valentine's Day on the super low key, I didn't even manage to take any pictures of the girls...oops!  But I'll tell you what, Ellie absolutely loved celebrating Valentine's and kept giving Thomas and myself "valentines" all week long!!

Now that Valentine's Day has come and gone it's time for us to pack up all the decor and get out my favorite decorations for St. Patrick's Day (which also happens to be my birthday so it's a pretty big deal in our house --- luckily we both have an Irish heritage as well).  My decor tastes have changed over the years but I'm pretty much always obsessed with green so whenever I find something I usually makes it's way home with me. 


The girls have swimming lessons on Friday's and I love that they are signed up for the same time, Finnley is actually in a Parent/Child class so I have to get in the water with her - it's a great bonding time for us and she is actually doing quite well.  Ellie got moved up into "the big pool" and isn't too big of a fan...but I told her she has to do it anyways and even though she is apprehensive before each class she doesn't want to get out of the pool when it is time to go.


It's Presidents Day weekend and I'm sure there are tons of sales going on but we have better plans for the holiday.  The school district Thomas works for takes the whole week off so we take advantage of his holiday and make our annual trip to Disneyland!!  While I can't go on my favorite rides I know that I'll be indulging in all the Dole Whips, Churros, and Mickey Pretzels I can get my hands on!! Disneyland, our home away from home.


I've done some online shopping lately and all my purchases are due to arrive within the next week.  I get those daily emails from Zulily but barely ever look at them because #momlife but it was the last day for Disney stuff so I just had to take a peek....I ordered the cutest clothes for the girls, a pair of mickey slip ons for myself, some Easter Basket goodies for the girls, and some fun items for the house, then since I got free shipping I checked out the women's clothes and have some maternity dresses (with pockets) as well as some great green tops headed my way!  I also took advantage of the Old Navy sale and got a couple more pairs of jeans for Thomas and then over to QVC to try out the Elemis face cream that comes so highly recommended.  I cannot wait for everything to come in!!

♥ Ashley

Wednesday, February 14, 2018

Happy Valentine's Day 2018

Just popping in to wish you all a Happy Valentine's Day!

We kept our festivities low key this year with minimal decor (including the lack of chalkboard art 😱) and left over take out from last night!  However, Ellie had a total blast at her Valentine's Party at school and couldn't believe that each one of her friends from school gave her a Valentine!  We also had to go to 3 different Starbucks to locate her a pink cakepop to celebrate the day!

This year's artwork is displayed on the mantle.  I just can't get enough of it!

 Finnley's artwork from last year is displayed in her room along with a Shimmer and Shine envelope (from NC) on her door.

 Ellie's door is sporting a heart I made out of a wire hanger and her own adorable handwriting 😍

 And then Ellie's artwork from previous years is displayed in her room!

Like sister, like sister...they did this on their own and it was so hard to choose from the 20 pics I snapped but this one took the cake!

Hope your day was filled with LOVE!!

Last year's Day of Love!


♥ Ashley

Monday, February 5, 2018

The Monthly Bumpdate- weeks 13-16

I can't believe it's already been a month since my last bumpdate.  The weeks are just flying by and the belly is growing bit by bit!  Exciting news this week, baby is the size of an avocado - no complaints here with that superfood comparison 😉.  This month I got the flu shot, went on a trip with Finnley across the country, and came home with a 24 hour bug that landed me in Urgent Care due to being pregnant...thankfully it turned out to be nothing and all is well on the farm.  Over in the Carolina's I got to indulge in all the Southern goodness of food: biscuits, BBQ, and cheesy grits being the highlights of my culinary exploration.


How far along: 16 weeks 3 days to be precise

Size of baby: an Avocado

Weight gain: I'm fluctuating around 10-12 lbs but my boobs are huge!!

Sleep: not terrible but not great.  I keep waking up with a stiff neck and I have the most vivid of dreams.

Cravings: the things I can't have (a sandwich, poached eggs, and copious amounts of coffee) additionally I still like all things spicy, give me all the pasta, and I can't say no to meat.  But I've also acquired a sweet tooth and think that cinnamon rolls and other baked goods are always a good idea.

Miss anything: aside from sandwiches, poached eggs, and coffee - there are some physical things that I miss but honestly I know I only have 5+ more months of this and it's not that bad.

Movement: not yet 😢, but hopefully I will soon.  I've always wanted to feel a baby in the belly (mine or others) and I can't wait to finally have the chance!!

Gender: we find out in a couple weeks and I am so excited.  I have no inclination whatsoever.

Wedding rings on/off: on with room to spare.

Happy or Moody: thankfully I've been happy more often than moody (which I'm sure everyone in the house can appreciate 😉)

Looking forward to: our anatomy scan and going to Disneyland!!! eek, I know I'll miss out on most of my favorite rides but when you go as often as we do I don't think I'll mind very much...just gives me more opportunities to sneak in an extra churro without sharing 😂

Next appointment: our anatomy scan and then my regular midwife appointment on the 28th!

Bumpdate 1, Bumpdate 2

♥ Ashley

Wednesday, January 31, 2018

What's Up Wednesday - January 2018

I can't even remember the last time I participated in What's up Wednesday...but these posts are always so fun, so here we go!!

What we're eating this week:
Tonight we are have a parent/teacher conference to talk about Ellie's kindergarten readiness so we're headed out to Red Robin for dinner afterwards.  Thursday is Steelhead (because it's so much better than salmon and Ellie eats the most out of all of us).  Friday I have to work and then we're all about the Pizza.  Saturday I have some Spaghetti (or other pasta) calling my name. Sunday is for Soup, I haven't decided which kind yet but here are some of my favorites: Cream of Carrot, West Virginia Governer's Stew, Cheeseburger Soup, and my very favorite chicken soup ever Colombian Chicken Soup.
What I'm reminiscing about:
6 years ago Thomas and I had our first HomeStudy visit scheduled for our Adoption.  I remember being so nervous and anxious about the whole process, it was totally worth it because Ellie is our biggest blessing and here we are 6 years later with two adorable daughters and our very first bio-babe on the way.  

What I'm loving:
Now that I am finally pregnant I actually get to look at maternity clothes with the intent of buying.  Sure my bump isn't that big yet and we're still 6 months from our due date but I went down the rabbit hole the other day looking for birthing robes/kimono's and I am completely obsessed with this one.
What we've been up to:
Last week Finnley and I headed to the East Coast with my dad to check out the Carolina's.  I ate all the good foods in Charleston (Callie's Hot Little Biscuit) and in Charlotte.  Finnley was an amazing girl the whole trip and I'm sure she had a great time.  Meanwhile, back home Ellie was living it up with Dada and Nanny (who came to watch her and take her to all her activities while I was away).

What I'm working on:
I signed up for the January Cure again this year to help me deep clean and declutter the house (this is the 3rd year I've done it and I love it so much).  So I've been working on my "homework" and crossing things off my big "to-do list".  My entryway has never been cleaner 😉.
What I'm excited about: 
I had my appointment with my Midwife today and got to hear the little babe's heartbeat again.  It's so nice to hear that and know that things are still going on in there, since I can't feel anything yet.  They were moving all around but she managed to locate the heartbeat and their heart rate is in the low 150's...tell me your guesses on the gender!!

What I'm watching:
We recently got rid of our cable and are solely streaming tv in our house.  I'm loving hulu, prime, netflix, and SlingTV.  So I'm watching all my favorite shows: Superstore, Big Bang Theory, This is Us, Fixer Upper, Call the Midwife, Bizarre Foods: Delicious Destinations and Reign.
What I'm wearing:
All the comfy clothes.  I've never been one too excited about tight waistbands and now as mine is expanding I need all the elastic I can get!! Leggings, Sweatpants, Joggers, Maternity Jeans, if it's stretchy then you can bet I'm wearing it 😊
What I'm doing this weekend:
We have big plans to go to the Children's Museum on Saturday and then hopefully on Sunday afternoon I can go bra shopping with my bestie because my girls are popping out of all of my bras 😆
What I'm looking forward to next month:
Thomas got me tickets to the Flower Show for Christmas and I can't wait for it to finally get here!! Flowers are my love language and I love all the inspiration I get going each year.  We also have some birthday parties to attend that should be super fun.  We are also heading back to the Happiest Place on Earth!!! yep we're making our annual February trip back to Disneyland and I can hardly contain my excitement! I cannot wait to get my mouth on a churro and corndog!!  Also I get to have another appointment with my Midwife and we get to find out the gender!!

Happy Last Day of January!!

♥ Ashley 

Thursday, January 11, 2018

Our Christmas Holiday 2017

oops it's already the 2nd week of January and I'm just now recapping our my defense we had to postpone one of our Christmas celebrations to January 1st due to SNOW!!

We hosted Christmas Eve at our house with Thomas family (per usual) and we went Parsons traditional in the food dept. they grew up with Prime Rib, potatoes, a veg and bread.  This year due to my pregnant condition we had to cook the Prime Rib past its prime (which was appreciated by the kiddos and a handful of adults...) but with enough horseradish it tasted fine 😉.  We also made mashed potatoes (of the red variety) and boiled carrots with butter.  Thomas brother brought two loaves of his homemade sourdough bread that was the perfect accompaniment to the meal.  Additionally Thomas mom brought all the treats: linzer cookies, rice crispy treats, buckeyes, sugar cookies, peanut butter blossoms, and layer cookie bars.

Unfortunately not all of the family was able to make it due to sickness (the dreaded HFMD) but we made due with them via dinner and presents via FaceTime...what would we do without technology these days??  We had a great time eating, visiting and then opening the obscene amount of presents.  The kiddos all had a great time but my favorite part was after Ellie opened her first present she was so confused why I told her to open another, she exclaimed "but I already opened my present!" after some coaxing and explaining she realized that there was more than one present for her.  It was so incredibly precious and she loved every single present she opened.  She was so excited for each one and told the giver that it was what she had always hoped and wished for! I wish I could be that gracious of a receiver!!

One of the most exciting things that happened on Christmas Eve was that it started Snowing...and if you know the PNW it's very rare for us to get a white Christmas, let alone an actual one where the snow falls on Christmas Eve!! It was a happy surprise and the kids absolutely enjoyed it...thank goodness for Papa who was willing to brave the snow with all the kids!

Once everyone left we set out Milk and Cookies for Santa...and Finnley had to make sure that the treats tasted A-Okay for Santa, Ellie was a bit upset 😂.

Christmas morning was slow and the girls slept in til nearly 7am! Unheard of from our early 5am risers.  We opened our stockings and presents and then I finished up cinnamon rolls, (I had made the dough the day before) and when they came out of the oven they were simply heaven.  I'm still dreaming of them and can't wait to make them again.  We went on a walk around our neighborhood in the snow, followed the footprints of our neighborhood coyote, and built a snowman which Ellie immediately knocked down.

Originally my family was supposed to join us for Christmas Day festivities but with the snow and another sick household, we decided to postpone it for the following week.  So our little family of Four got to spend the whole day together at home with no plans.  We did go out to Starbucks and a drive around town to see if anything was open (mainly a Chinese/Asian restaurant) and when we saw black storefront after black restaurant we made our way back home to enjoy all that we have.

Finally January 1st came along and we hosted Christmas with my family.  We had Ham (which everyone was surprised - since I have proclaimed my disdain for ham since forever) cheesey cornflake pototoes, a salad and biscuits.  The food was great, Ellie and the rest ate copious amounts of ham, while I ate my dutiful single bite 😉 (have no fear I filled up on appetizers and practically all the potatoes) the cousins all loved hanging out with each other.  Ellie and the second oldest cousin spent most of the gathering watching her kindle in her bed - so freaking cute.  Opening presents was a bit of a mayhem but it was so fun to see the excitement of the kiddos.  This time however, Ellie kept asking where her next present was...oh well.

It was such a fun Holiday Celebration and I can't believe it was the last one we will celebrate as a family of Four!!

Happy New Year y'all.

♥ Ashley

Monday, January 8, 2018

The Monthly Bumpdate - weeks 9-12

Y'all I can't even express how awesome it is that I get to post yet again about my pregnancy!! It's an infertility fighters dream I tell ya!!

We are basically out of the First Trimester and have less than 27 weeks to go!  Thankfully I haven't had nausea that bad...I attribute that to my lack of sense of smell 😉 I guess that finally came in handy for something.  I'm rocking some seriously ridiculous grandma hair with mass amounts of grey growout and I'm dreaming of going back to my monthly massages because I've got a knot the size of Texas in my shoulder.  I finally graduated from my RE's office and am seeing a Midwife!  I looked into Centering Pregnancy and was highly considering it until I learned that my Midwife wouldn't be leading my I'll just stick to individual appointments with her.  I also finished up my Progesterone and it's been so nice eliminating 2 of my daily alarms (7:30a/7:30p) and just having to take my thyroid meds daily at 5:00am 😳.

Ellie is constantly asking me to "see the baby" and by that she means to look at my belly.  When she gives it kisses, Finnley has to make sure she gets in on it too...though I'm pretty sure she is clueless as to whats going on there.  Regardless we are all just in disbelief that this is actually happening and incredibly happy and thankful that it is!

Size: a lime or prune
Gender: who knows but this week I'm thinking boy
Symptoms: crazy tired and a lingering headache since December 29th (its been off and on...mostly off the past few days)
Cravings: give me all the pasta!! Spaghetti especially but I won't say no to cheese tortellini...and meat!!
Mood: I'd say I'm pretty moody and can lose my cool rather quickly but then I am also pretty emotional and can cry at just about anything.
Sleep: horrible, I can't seem to get comfortable and keep waking up with knots in my neck and shoulders...also I have to pee at least once a night.
Rings: on and just as loose as usual
Belly: I know that it's going to get way bigger but there is definitely something there and I couldn't love it more.  I've gained at least 8 lbs so far (thanks to all the pasta 😉)  and while I have no problem with my pants getting tighter (h e l l o leggings!!) seeing that number go back up on the scale after working for 18 months to get it down is kind of hard to swallow - but I'll get over that too!
Next Appointment: Jan 31, and I can't wait to hear the heartbeat again!! I met with my Midwife a couple days after Christmas and we weren't able to locate the heartbeat but I know for sure we will at the next appointment.

Until next Month!!

♥ Ashley

Monday, December 25, 2017

Merry Christmas 2017

Merry Christmas!

Last year I mentioned that we weren’t sure how we were going to top 2016…well we figured out a way!! Our biggest news of the year was having a go at IVF, which thankfully was successful!  We are expecting our first biological babe in July 2018, our hearts are bursting with excitement and our nerves are hopeful this babe sticks around for the long haul!

We’ve kept ourselves busy yet again this year with a bit of travel: Disneyland twice (May and September) and decided to become Disneyland Passholders since we love it there so much, many trips to Selah to visit Thomas parents in their new home, a road trip to Montana, countless day trips to Vashon Island, and an 11 day cruise in the Baltic (Denmark, Norway, Germany, Estonia, Russia, Finland, and Sweden) with the girls and Ashley’s dad.   The girls are practically expert travelers at this point and have enjoyed every trip so far, Ellie keeps asking when we’re going back on our White Cruise Boat and Finnley is reminded of the cruise with every bite of cream cheese she has.  We are over the moon with making these memories with the girls and cannot wait to add another babe to our family – though life will definitely get a bit more tricky, we’re sure we can handle it and if not you can just find us all hiding out in Disneyland just trying to survive ;)

Thomas: is still teaching and has taken on a new subject, Psychology, which is keeping him busy.  Cycling and Fly Fishing are still his favorite hobbies and spending time playing with the girls is always at the top of his list.

Ashley: is doing well in the early stages of pregnancy, thankfully the nausea hasn’t been too bad although she does get exhausted half way through the day.  She is still nannying twice a week and enjoys keeping things real with her blog “Life with Kids”.

Ellie: started Pre-K this year and is excelling at her learning.  She can spell/write her name, identify most of the letters and can count to 40.  She started ballet this year and had her first recital in May, she loved it so much we signed her up again.  She loves to sing and dance and laughing is seriously her favorite thing to do.  Ellie is still as obsessed with Finnley as ever, and now is very excited about having another sibling to boss around and love on.

Finnley: is growing like a weed, she is only about 4 inches shorter than Ellie and she is running around causing trouble.  Her favorite things to eat come out of pouches (thank goodness for their creation) and Mac’n’Cheese.  Her vocabulary is growing by the day, though most of her words are hard to decipher.  Her love of Mickey Mouse runs deeper than any of us and while her facial expression is usually a stone cold stare…when she’s silly her faces are just the best.  Finnley is still enamored with her sister and is most comfortable with her around, though she has recently discovered the dogs…which they don’t seem to be too pleased about ;)

With Love,
Thomas, Ashley, Ellie and Finnley
The Farm Animals: Paladin, Ragtime, Cooper, Sakari, Annabelle, Penelope, Delilah, Stella, Ma and Solo

Saturday, December 23, 2017

A Christmas Home Tour 2017

Nothing like waiting until the last minute to share our Christmas Home with y'all...but I guess that's life with two kiddos and a pregnancy.  SO here we go!!

We really tried to simplify our decor this year and honestly....I love it.  Just some light touches here and there, though I do dream of having some live pine/fir garland in our house but when you have a dog that's allergic you have to make sacrifices.

In our Living Room we put our tree in the corner again this year and I love how it completes the room. We actually got a new tree this year from Target, since our original one finally bit the dust last year.  It searched and searched for small airy artificial tree and I love it just as much as I thought I would.  We also went with colored lights, it took 4 strands to cover this little tree but it was well worth it.  I stopped in at Ikea to pick up some more of their boxwood wreaths because I love them so.

Last year my dad gave Ellie the Polar Express Train and it was perfect to go around our tree this year.  It's been quite the hit with all the kiddos.

just a sampling of the presents we had for Christmas Eve.

And then some touches in the bedrooms.

I have been on the lookout for an affordable Christmas pillow for our bed all season long that had more green than red and I finally found it in the Dollar Spot at Target and it's been the best addition to our room.

The girls rooms are pretty simple this year with some holiday sheets and their personal trees.

And that finishes up our simple Christmas Home Tour this year!  Thanks for stopping by.

♥ Ashley