Hey everyone! Man, has it been a crazy start to fall! To thread this lengthy post together, we had Serena Rose Photography take some family pictures of us the other day! She did a great job and these will give you something pretty to look at as I rant on and on with news and updates!
Riley started kindergarten this year and so far, so good! Most days she absolutely loves it. Other days, its tough to get her moving. Can you blame her though? Sometimes you just want to stay home and watch cartoons all day. I get it.
Dave has had his first year of full-time office days since he started his youth pastor job 6 years ago! He’s had to cram-in work from home and an office day here and there when he could. Now we have 4 babysitters during the week to help us get it all done! It’s definitely a juggle, but it’s where we are right now, and it seems to be working great.
I’m working three part-time jobs currently. I went back teaching math part-time at the same school as last year. It takes away from time I’d rather dedicate to design or blogging, but its a great consistent paycheck, literally the best hours ever (10:30-2), and is pretty easy work (I teach honors students and they’re a-mazing). I’m also finishing out this calendar year as a part-time administrative assistant for a camp I used to attend (and where Dave and I met). It’s been great helping them out with something I’m good at, organizing and communication, but feels a bit over-the-top with all the other things we have going on, so I’ll be leaving that position after Christmas. Finally, I still have one or two design clients at a time. Little projects- mantel decorating, choosing wall art, etc., but still space taken up in my brain, orders I must stay on top of, and emails I must write.
For all these reasons, and more I will get to shortly, I’ve been pretty absent from this blog and from Instagram. I LOVE writing this blog. I love thinking of new ideas and engaging with all of you. And I LOVE how Instagram has become almost another blog space over the past year or so. Each caption seems to be a mini-blog post in-and-of-itself and I love getting to know people I’ve never met before and feeling as if we could be best buds. It’s tough to keep up with it though. You can easily feel like you’re “falling behind” or that your pictures or posts aren’t good enough to compete with these people with hundreds upon thousands of followers. I wouldn’t say it’s a huge stress or burden, but I definitely feel it there when I think about my lack of growth lately. All the courses I took and posts I read about how you get out of this business what you put into it. There’s so much time up front that you must spend gaining traction, but once you stop, so does your following.
To put things into perspective though, the main source of distraction these past few months has been something so wonderful. A blessing we were not expecting by any stretch of the imagination.
We’re having another baby!!
Some of you who are close to me will probably say “I knew it!” I’ve definitely been preoccupied and in all honesty, a bit freaked out about the whole thing.
How I Found Out
I actually ran to the local Urgent Care during church one Sunday morning. I dropped the girls off at their separate classrooms (Logan in the nursery), and went to get checked out for a possible ear infection. The nurse asked me when my last menstrual cycle began and I told her August 7th. This was now September 9th. She asked if I was expecting my period soon and I naturally said, “Uh, yeah.” When she left the room, I sat there and pondered for a second- I AM expecting it soon right?
It wasn’t until about four days later that I actually took a pregnancy test. When it came up clear-as-day positive, all I could do was laugh. Yes, it was totally unexpected and definitely sooner than I had planned having another baby (Logan wasn’t even one yet). But we tried for SO long to get pregnant with Logan. Over a year. And here we are, smacked in the face with a third, without even trying. There was no reason for me to freak out about it- I now understand, through our trials with Logan, what a miracle getting pregnant is, especially with so many of my close friends who are currently struggling painfully through this process. I also look at how amazing my other two babies have been. And how terrified I was when I found out I was pregnant with my first. I cried for the first two months thinking how my body could never actually deliver a human being. But guess what, it did. And she’s awesome. They both are!
Telling Dave the news, however, was a bit more terrifying. He had mentioned to our friends only a week or two before, how if we were pregnant again, he would be in a corner somewhere crying. He was joking, of course…I think. But those words just echoed in my mind all day as I waited to tell him. He had a lot going on at work that day and I didn’t want to distract him, so I waited until the girls were asleep that night and it was just the two of us. He smiled nervously when I told him, but was essentially frozen to his spot. He did not really have words, just kept smiling. We ended up laughing about it and I assured him everything was going to be fine! The truth of the matter is, I know everything is going to be fine, but I’m also recruiting family and friends to come live with us and help us pull this off! How do you even have three kids?
Bigger Family, Bigger House?
With the expectation of another person living with us, it got me to thinking about our home situation. We currently live in a four-bedroom rancher. The fourth bedroom is super small, however, and is currently being used as my office. When we created Logan’s room in the spare bedroom last year, we lost a lot of our storage space for random items. We got rid of a lot at a garage sale, and put the rest in the attic or squeezed it into my office. If we turned my office into the nursery, the problem is now where do we put all of THIS stuff that I actually use regularly? We don’t have a basement, so our only real storage space is in our garage or attic. We’ve kicked around a couple of ideas that could work while the baby is young. He/she will be staying in our bedroom for the first few months anyway. But there are other things I’ve been dreaming about as well.
My Wish List
Our current town does not have the most character. We moved here because it is close to both of our parents (my parents are still a half hour away but it’s a really easy trip from here), and the school district is one of the better ones in this area. Outside of those things, there isn’t a whole lot that our town has to offer. I would really love to be able to walk somewhere- a restaurant, coffee shop, store, etc. Our development is surrounded by busy roads, so outside of our few streets, we can’t really walk or bike anywhere meaningful.
Dave and I also have really been feeling the desire to host people more often- family, friends, church groups, our youth group, whoever. We want to be able to open our home and easily entertain. Our current house, with a smaller kitchen and no dining room, doesn’t really lend itself to that.
There’s also aesthetic things I would love in a different home- more natural light, an outdoor living space, and old-world character and charm. We’re looking into older homes- I am pretty anti-new build-cookie-cutters. And we don’t have the money to have a custom-built home designed for us. It’s pretty exciting to think about moving into a new place and getting to start from scratch again- it’s any home designer’s dream! But it’s a LOT of planning and a LOT of praying that we make the right decisions for our family. We have a daughter who loves her stability and is pretty sensitive to change of any kind. I already know that the only way I get her out of this house is if I create the perfect “Riley Room” for her in a new house.
Basically, it’s been a lot.
So needless to say, there’s been a lot on my mind. I’m a terrible liar and when there’s something I’m thinking about, it’s hard for me not to share it with people. When there’s so much up in the air that I can’t really talk about yet, it’s hard for me to post about end tables or fall decorating. But here we are, in the thick of it, and I hope you will walk with us through this time. I always love hearing your input and advice- it’s comforting to have your support surrounding us. I’m super excited for this year ahead, and I’m so pumped to finally fill you all in on what’s been happening! Get ready for lots of buying and selling conversations! And new baby posts! And Happy Thanksgiving from our family to yours! What a year to be thankful!