snow days

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2016 ended on a high note with a fabulous New Year’s Eve dance party in our living room, and so far 2017 doesn’t disappoint either! We started things off just right with a beautiful snow fall.

We were prepared for 6-8 inches, but woke up to a light icing on the grass. We were feeling pretty disappointed when suddenly giant snow flakes began to fall from the sky! Down here in the south, snow is a novelty, so we were pretty excited!

I spent most of the day bundled up inside with a crochet project and warm blanket, and the rest of the day watching the boys sled! Our fun neighbor spent the majority of the day pulling the kids around behind his riding lawn mower. Lucy and I even got a ride, and it was pretty awesome!

Isn’t snow just so magical!? I love when the world is covered in white. It’s like the real world suddenly transforms into  a fairy tale when it snows. I love it, and it was such a good day, one that I know the kids will remember!

Snow days from years past… the white fluffy stuff , snow day

Snow Day Outfit Details:

classic Women’s Plus Size Chalet Down Shawl Collar Coat-Black Floral • Classic • $149.97
Shimmer sweater leggings • Gap • $27.99

START…my 2017 motto!

2016 was a great year for us! We got to travel a ton, the boys mastered swimming and bike riding, we welcomed Lucy Grace into the world, and Curtis accepted a new job offer! Being pregnant for the first half of the year, and having a newborn for the second half, I’ve really had to push any creative efforts aside while I focused on my family. That shift in focus was exactly what I needed, and I hope to continue my efforts to be more present with my kids and Curtis in 2017.

But with all that said, while watching the kids ride bikes the other day, I knew exactly what my “one little word” should be. Each boy got a new bike for Christmas and so the day after, we took them to a parking lot to get some practice in. We were going to put training wheels on Owen and Milo’s bikes, but instead they decided to just start riding their two wheelers! And they did it! They were amazing, and it was so fun to watch! It made me think about all the little projects and ideas that I have in my head. Things that I dream about doing, but never do. I don’t know if I’m scared of failing, or looking dumb, or just lazy, but I decided in 2017 I’m just going to START.

I’m just going to START taking more pictures, I’m just going to START reading that book that’s been sitting on my nightstand for months, I’m just going to START playing with my kids more, I’m just going to START making things again.

I hope 2017 will be a year of making things happen, and I’m so excited to get started.

If you could pick “one little word” to define your aspirations for the year, what would it be?

Before looking ahead to 2017, I did some looking back. I went through all of our footage from 2016 to remember all of the amazing things we did and to see how the kids grew over time. I put it all together into a video because I never want to forget!

See for yourself…

shopping for our Christmas tree!!!

Earlier in the month we went on our annual trip to pick out a Christmas tree! The boys excitedly run through the isles of trees, and then we find the one that’s just right. They tried to convince us to get both the 20 footer as well as the tiniest 2 foot tree on the lot, but in the end we settled with the perfect, regular sized tree!

We wanted to document this fun tradition to have for years and years to come, so we filmed our day! Sometimes I feel like time is flying by way too fast and I want to capture every single moment because I am terrified I’ll forget! Do you ever feel like that? I already take a million photos as the children grow, but I wanted to start getting their little body’s and voices on video as well.

A Yummy Hot Cocoa Recipe and Cute Cards With Basic Invite!

 What better way to warm up a little body, than with a cup of delicious hot chocolate?

The boys ask for some every morning when they wake up, and several times throughout the day. It must be hereditary because my mom has had a cup of hot cocoa for breakfast every morning that I can remember! 
The other day, I decided that a yummy, warm drink would be the perfect companion to a little Christmas card addressing! 

This year we partnered with Basic Invite to design our Christmas cards. It was such a fun experience! Their website is full of beautiful images and they have gobs of gorgeous stationary to choose from! Whether you’re planning a wedding, a baby shower, or just want to up your stationary game, they have what you need!

Basic Invite has so many holiday card options to choose from, but my favorite part was that the cards are also customizable! Once I chose my layout, I got to play around with fonts and colors to get just the right look! I love how rustic our cards turned out to be! The website also has a feature that collects addresses from friends and family, making it even easier to get your cards out on time!


So, while I stuffed and addressed the morning away, the kids got to join in the holiday fun by helping me whip up a batch of hot chocolate!
In our Haynie family cook book we have a really yummy recipe for Mint Truffle Hot Chocolate! We had not tried it before, so I whipped some up, and let the kids help in the mixing fun! Making your own mix is SO easy to do, and makes a great gift for neighbors and friends too! All you have to do is fill up some mason jars and add a cute note!
Here is our Haynie recipe for Mint Truffle Hot Chocolate, so you can sip while you address your Christmas cards, or wrap presents too!

We had such a great morning tackling two Christmas traditions at once! We made a delicious, warm, holiday treat while getting our Christmas cards ready to mail! I think we are going to make this a holiday habit from now on!

What are some of your favorite holiday traditions!? Did you send out Christmas cards this year?

Don’t forget to stop by www.BasicInvite.com to look at their variety of Christmas card options! 
They are offering 30% off right now with code HOLI30!

Roadtrip to Texas!

1,468 miles, 41 hours of driving, 7 days, and 4 hotels.
Every minute spent was absolutely worth it.
This Thanksgiving, we traveled down to Texas for a family reunion. It was the longest road trip we have ever taken, and it definitely wasn’t easy with a 4 month old. But, whether it was driving extremely long distances, or taking time off work or school, we all made sacrifices to be there. That sacrifice made our time together that much more special. 
We first drove to Dallas to stay with Curtis’ parents before heading down to Hunt. Once we got to this tiny, secluded little town in the hill country of Texas, we stayed a few days enjoying a river side resort. We canoed, swam, hiked, and explored. The kids all roamed free around the hotel grounds and they reveled in the freedom! We explored this fun hiking area where all 6 families, and 23 grand kids, made a long, arduous, 5 mile hike up and down a mountain. It was so difficult, but I think very rewarding.
After our time by the Guadalupe river, we traveled to San Antonia to see the Alamo and some of the sites downtown. We ate at a hole in the wall taco joint (which was delicious), and explored a city market full of Mexican goods! 
It was truly a magical trip. The boys only get to see their cousins about once a year, but when together, they play as if no time has passed. My favorite part about this trip was watching the friendships and love grow between all of the children. I can’t help but feel blessed that we have such a large family, with so many wonderful examples of genuine, kind, righteous people for my children to look up to. I just can’t even imagine a better childhood for my boys (and Lucy too). 

falling for fall

Temperatures drop, leaves fall, and days shorten. It’s finally fall, a season of change and a feeling of togetherness. 
Just like the season, our family is getting used to change, and it’s a good change. We’re a family of six now and we’re still getting used to what that’s like. Having Lucy around has allowed life to slow down a bit. We have to plan our outings a little better, and we often find ourselves staying in more often. Not being able to jet set around town and being in the home more is actually kind of hard for me, but I’m embracing the slower pace and trying to be more engaged in mothering the kids. This fall I’ve spent more time building Lego’s, reading books, sitting on park benches, swinging, and dare I say it…cooking! By the end of the day, I am exhausted, but in a good way. The exhaustion makes me feel like I accomplished something, and I need that feeling. Sometimes I feel like just being a mom isn’t as fulfilling to me as it might be to other stay at home moms. I like to have something to work on, something to sell, something to make. But I’m glad that having a baby has given me a chance to feel a little peace in the day to day. Every night, no matter how tired I am, I try to take a walk around the neighborhood. I usually listen to a podcast and scare myself silly on this one dark street, but it has been something I really look forward to. I’ll be bummed when it gets too cold for it. 
This fall, the kids have all grown, and learned, and changed so quickly. They’re all in school (Milo in preschool), and something about school really just makes them grow up so fast. I love it and I hate it all at the same time. Lucy is also growing and becoming such a fun baby. We live for her smiles and coos. I’m constantly covered in milk and spit up, but I’m getting used to the smell and one little smile from that girl makes it all worth it. So far this fall, we have had a lot of fun park days, family walks, and a trip to the pumpkin patch. On Halloween the boys wore their silly costumes and I will cherish the memories of that night so much. It was truly one of my favorite Halloween night’s ever. I wish so badly that I had captured every moment of trick or treating on film…Ande in his astronaut helmet with his candy bag attached to his belt, Owen in his spider outfit with those spider legs bouncing around, and Milo running, white faced, in his ghost costume shouting, “Wow! Look at all this candy!” after every…single…house! I almost missed those moments because of a very tired baby, but we found a way for me to join the fun and I’m so glad. 
There have certainly been a lot of challenges this fall with the growth of our family, and a new baby around. I’m struggling with mom guilt a lot, wishing I could have more arms to be there for each and every kid every time they  need it, and definitely feeling a little old at times. But I also wish I could bottle up the love that little Lucy has given our family. I am really enjoying the tenderness she’s given her brothers. They love her, and nurture her, and because of that I think our family is going to be better than ever. 
So this year, I’ve fallen in love with fall. I love the changes we’ve experienced this year and I so look forward to the future (except January…January is brutal…we could skip that chilly month! 😉 )


Below are some fun moments from our visit to the pumpkin patch, and other fall fun…
grey-pumpkins

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picking-pumpkins

array-of-pumpkins

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a-loving-older-brother

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from-where-i-stand-pumpkin-photo

loving-on-baby-sister

sunset-kisses

hiding-in-the-trees

brotherly-love

Lucy’s Blessing Day

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our-family-on-blessing-day
big-brothers
mother-and-father-on-blessing-day
loving-that-sweet-baby
a-mother-and-her-baby
theres-nothing-like-family
sisters-on-blessing-day
three-generations-on-blessing-day
The first Sunday of September was Lucy’s blessing day at church. Curtis gave the most wonderful, heartfelt blessing for her. What a great way to start out her life! We were lucky to have many family members there. We missed our Haynie clan, but enjoyed being surrounded by my family. In the evening, we celebrated with dinner at my parent’s house where all the little boys wrestled on the trampoline and the adults got eaten alive by mosquitoes! My side of the family started out so small, and I really love seeing it grow and grow! We are so lucky to have added Lucy to the mix. It’s no secret that we all love her SO much!
My Dress: Piper and Scoot
Lucy’s Flower Crown: My Monday’s Child
a-couple-who-laughs-togetherlaughter-and-love
(I can’t trust that trickster for anything! But glad to have a life full of laughter with him!….
 and that couldn’t be more cheesy…)

Lucy Grace Haynie

7.20.16
7 lbs. 9 oz.
20 in long
3:35 pm
mother-daughter

 

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my-hospital-bracelet

 

mother-giving-birth

 

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holding-our-baby

 

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meeting-baby-sister

 

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big-brother-holding-baby-sister

 

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Two months later, and I am finally getting around to writing up Lucy’s birth story!
A few weeks before Lucy’s due date, I asked my doctor if I could be induced. I had an induction with Milo and everything went so well. My doctor tried to convince me to wait it out naturally, but I had my mind set. I just really felt like inducing Lucy was what we needed to do.
The morning of her birth, I was feeling extremely nervous. It was somewhat due to my doctor advising me against inducing early, but also because of something Milo said to me a few weeks earlier. He said, “Mama, when will the other baby come, when this one dies?” What a crazy, freaky thing to say…?
When we arrived at the hospital, my dad came by so that he and Curtis could give me a blessing. I felt a sense of calm immediately afterwards, and the rest of the day was just perfect.
I came in at only 1 cm, but after breaking my water, I jumped to 4 cm. I got my epidural not long after that. The anesthesiologist assured me that he was the best of the best, and he proved himself right! I hardly felt a thing. I felt extremely lucky to have him, along with a really friendly, chatty nurse that we just loved. She told me a story of being told she was having a girl, only to find out it was really a boy! I was pretty convinced that Lucy would end up being a boy too, and that we’d have to come up with a new name pretty quick!
The epidural worked wonders on one side, but on the other side, I felt every excruciating contraction. It was difficult to power through, and I thought for sure it was time to push! The nurse came to check me and I was only at a 5! Seriously!? For some reason, my body was contracting but she wasn’t moving down. The nurse brought in this huge thing that looked like an exercise ball that was peanut shaped. I put it between my legs, and after giving my kids a quick call, I could feel my body pushing. It’s truly insane how my body new what to do, and was doing it without me even telling it to! It still amazes me. Literally minutes after using the “peanut” and only being 5 cm, we called the nurse back in. I was fully dilated and ready to go.
Lucy’s head was a bit crooked and sorta stuck on my hip bone, which is why she wasn’t moving down. But one little twist of her head, and a couple pushes later, she was here! She came so fast, the doctor had to act quick to catch her! Her umbilical cord was tied in a “perfect knot” and the doctor said she was so lucky to be alive and as healthy as she was! At that moment, I knew why I so badly wanted an induction!
I still had myself convinced she was a boy, until they laid her on my chest and I got a good look! She was a she! We were so happy to finally have our little girl with us, but more than her being our first girl, we were just so happy to have another sweet little baby in our family. We prayed long and hard for her, and for her to finally be here fills us with such joy and gratitude!
As soon as she laid on my chest, we saw what a quiet, calm soul she is. She hardly made a peep! And now, two months later, she continues to be the sweetest blessing to our family. She can make even the wildest of brothers to stop and coo, and gently stroke her cheeks. She smiles at us all and we love her dearly.

our summer beach vacation!

Earlier this summer, we took our annual trip to the NC coast! If you’ve been keeping up with this blog for a while, then you know how much I love this trip every year (last year’s beach trip)! We went to a beach house in Atlantic Beach that we’ve stayed at several times and it’s starting to feel like home. This year, the week flew by so fast I could hardly believe it. 
We started out the week with an awe inspiring thunderstorm. We walked out onto the sand as soon as we arrived and started splashing in the waves and checking out shells right away. We were having a blast when we turned around and saw the darkest, most ominous clouds we’ve ever seen! Before we could get inside, a torrential downpour caught us! You can catch a quick glance of the storm in the video posted above!
The rest of the week was so relaxing, which was very welcome for my 36 week pregnant self! Several mornings in a row we saw schools of dolphins right outside our ocean front windows! It was so fun to watch them jump as we ate breakfast! We then spent every day out on the beach splashing, digging, looking for sea glass, and going for walks. The boys have really taken to swimming this summer, and I was so impressed with their ocean swimming skills! Ande declared snorkeling his favorite sport and they boogie boarded non-stop!
The only downside to our trip was the constant wind! It did a number on my hair, and blew little “sand daggers” at our legs. For the most part, we could ignore it, but little Owen just couldn’t stand the feeling on his legs! He was miserable and we were desperate for a solution, so we pulled Curtis’ church socks up to his knees and the problem was fixed! It was a silly sight, for sure! 
On the most windy day, Ande and I decided to take a walk on the beach. We wanted to make it to the pier so he could walk out on it and see what it was like. On the way there, we made it pretty far, pretty fast, with the wind pushing us at our backs. After a while, we realized that it was going to be a little harder to walk back so we turned around just short of the pier. The walk back, with the wind pushing against us, was the hardest thing! We had walked MUCH farther than we thought we had! I kept imagining myself going into labor, and tried to figure out in my head what we would do if I did! Luckily, Lucy was nice and cozy in my belly, and we finally made it back to the house! Whew!
The trip already seems like a lifetime ago, and I’m already looking forward to next year! But for now, it has been so fun to look through our photos and create a video full of memories from our time there! 
jumping-at-the-beach

a-look-at-the-ocean
applying-sunscreen

surfing-boy

gazing-at-the-sea

goggles-and-boogie-boards
beach-selfie

fun-with-dad-on-the-beach

dad-and-his-boys

two-little-boys-in-the-sand

beach-snack-time

treats-at-the-beach
boogie-boarding-baby

beach-style

digging-in-the-sand

gazing-at-the-aquarium

blue-jelly-fish

wrapped-in-his-towel

36-week-belly-shot

little-boy-snorkeling

story-time-with-dad

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riding-on-dads-shoulders

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Make sure to click over to our beach trip video and subscribe to our Youtube Channel while you’re there! We have been posting videos from our family adventures for us and all of you to enjoy!

bump update :: 38 weeks

The end is finally in sight! I’m actually feeling pretty good, too good if you ask me. If I were feeling a little more uncomfortable, then at least it would feel like things were moving along! I seem to have a good amount of energy during the day, then about 6 pm I just crash. All of us are getting so anxious and excited to meet the little gal and besides school starting this week for Ande and Owen, she’s all we think about!

Well… a few little boys are probably also thinking a lot about Legos and transformers too because that’s a given…

38-week-baby-bump-silhouette

How far along? Officially 2 weeks left, which really isn’t much time, but somehow still feels like forever!


Craving? I’m still not much of a food “craver” although lately I’ve reverted back to my child-self and really been digging plain Cheerios.


Sleeping? Sleep? What is that? I keep falling asleep early and then I wake up around midnight and can’t fall back asleep!


Wearing? We have been practically living at the pool and I’ve been rocking this bathing suit a ton. (I can’t find the original anymore, but here is a similar version).


Feeling? Super anxious. You’d think by the 4th time this would all just be a cake walk. But in typical Lindsay fashion, I lay awake worrying about everything. How is this thing gonna go down? Is it going to feel like I’m dying like Ande’s birth? When is it going to happen? What if I miss Owen’s first day of Kindergarten? Will whoever is watching my boy’s remember to make their school lunches? Will she love Curtis more than me?


Buying for baby? We got this bassinet for a steal which Ande promptly began setting up ALL of the baby toys in. Cute, but calm down!

Nesting? If spending a 95 degree Saturday making everyone weed our front yard natural area and the entire next Saturday collecting 3 giant trash bags of stuff to donate and even more bags of trash, then yes. Yes, I am nesting. The funny thing is that I think Curtis has got the nesting bug even worse then me! He bought a new vacuum recently and now makes vacuuming, not only the carpet, but the walls, blinds, picture frames, etc, a nightly ritual.


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