Dear London June,

That’s correct. You are a London June. A sweet little girl. The fulfillment of my wildest dreams. Everyone seemed to know you were a girl too, especially Daddy. He knew from the very beginning. I have a feeling you will be a daddy’s girl. Ever since I was a little girl and I would play pretend, my babies were always girls. I’ve only ever imagined myself with a little girl and when I got pregnant I tried my best to be unbiased and open my heart to receiving a little boy. By the time it was time to find out what you were, I had convinced myself that you were a boy.

We chose not to find out your sex while having the ultrasound. We wanted to wait so we could share the moment with just the two of us and record our reactions on video. While the ultrasound tech was examining me, she said “..and there’s his little nose…” and I instantly accepted the fact that you were a Finley Monroe and not a London June. I asked your Daddy as we were leaving if he caught her slip up and he did indeed.

But to my great surprise, you were a girl! Joy of joys!!

Seeing you on the ultrasound was holy and wonderful. I felt like I’ve never studied or focused on something more in my life. I was absolutely captivated, blown away and giddy. She told us where everything was located and I could hardly believe it all. She would point out your kidneys and liver and heart which we saw beating at 155 bpm! We even saw your blood flow from the umbilical cord to your heart and it was amazing.

ultrasound

While she was trying to capture and measure all the necessary pictures you were busily flipping, rolling and kicking up a storm! She even felt a huge kick to the doppler. I think it must have been the cold O.J. I drank before because I really felt you a lot!

nails oj

You kept your hands by your sweet little face the entire time- I wonder if you will do that once you are out here with us. You also open and closed your little mouth back and forth the entire time and it took my breath away! We truly got to view a miracle in the making and I wish I could watch you forever in there. You are perfection defined.

After we celebrated the fact that you were a girl, we had a party to throw in your honor! But first, we had to buy your first outfit. Your Dad and I fell in love with a beautiful dusty pink dress decorated with white tree and bunny silhouettes from the Beatrix Potter line at GAP. Your Daddy is especially proud of it and shows a picture of it to all his friends. He’s so smitten over you.

1st dress

We came home, finished decorating and filled black balloons with pink confetti inside.

bunting

finley or london

boy or girl

joy to the world

wall

Once guests arrived, they voted on whether you were a boy or a girl. There was lots more girl votes!

boy girl

We gave everyone a balloon and a pin and counted to 3. On 3, everyone popped their balloon and pink confetti flew all over our tiny living room. Shrills and screams of excitement filled the room and everyone celebrated London June. Hugs and kisses were exchanged and joy abounded. It was a blessed evening. Your Mum Mum (my Mom) and your Aunt Winnie (my sister) had presents a ready. There was a boy gift and a girl gift. The girl gift was filled with lace, your first tu-tu, frills and pink. The boy gift was filled with beautiful books which weren’t boyish. They both knew you were London at heart. They are already spoiling you like crazy=

gifts

We recorded it all on video and then posted it on Facebook late that night. Everyone was so thrilled to know you by name and shared so much love and excitement. You have a wonderful community already that cherishes and celebrates you. I hope you learn to cherish the importance of community.

Your Aunt Winnie and I went on a thrifting exploration for you. I think she is my thrifiting good luck charm because she found most of the amazing vintage pieces we bought. They are so London June and so classy and precious. I hate most of the modern baby clothes you find in the stores. Its mostly loud, bright and far too old for itty bitty precious babes like you. Vintage baby clothes are so delicate, soft and unique. I love finding hand embroidered  little animals. Every little girl should be just that, a little girl. No zebra, silly sayings or neon colors for you little baby.

thrift haul

I have been busy Instagramming and discovered Instagram shops. Mamas from all over the country sell their baby’s used clothing often in excellent condition for very little money. I have been on a rampage that was uncontrollable and they steadily are arriving in the mailbox every day. I had to ban myself from anymore near future purchases because it was out of control girlfriend. You will be the best vintage inspired dressed baby in town and I can hardly stand it! When you start outgrowing your outfits I plan on opening up my own Instagram shop and selling some of your things. (readers can add the shop now @ lovedbylondon and keep track with recent purchases and baby growing updates or follow my personal account @ sydneyarden)

Oh, baby London- how I adore you and your kicks and the joy you already spill into our lives. You’ve given us life molding memories that I can’t wait to share with you while I tuck you into bed. You are just spectacular.

Love you sweet GIRL!

Love,

One over-joyed Mama

its a girl

And one smitten Daddy

love daddy

Advertisements

Week 18.

Dear Blueberry,

My immune system died. So puny.

BUT I just don’t care.

I’ve come to accept it and I’ve become a pro at nursing my illnesses.

I took 4 whole days off of work because of my viral infection and stayed in bed the entire time.

I don’t know the last time I’ve ever done that.

[Major strugglefest]

But I’m on the mend.

During my bed ridden times I researched all natural remedies and I think I’m becoming more and more hippyish by the second.

I’m learning a lot about the dangers of modern medicine and how we have a lot of healthy, natural medicines at our finger tips.

So, Im drinking Elderberry syrup like it’s going out of style to help build my immune system and curb the chance of another bug/viral infection.

DETERMINED.

On Saturday, I drug myself out of bed to attend a mandatory training class for a world church conference I am a voting delegate for. I was miserable and there was no way of hiding it. During the midst of training a very dear church family member (he married your Dad & I) came up to me and whispered something in my ear. He said he could see I was feeling awful and wanted to remind me that if I wanted to be anointed with oil and prayed for I could. This is one of our church’s sacraments and it’s something a lot of churches don’t do and I’m so glad our church upholds this holy act found in scripture. I have only ever been anointed once when I was in third grade and struggling with major health issues. I was passing out a lot in the middle of class and went through a lot of different specialists and tests to basically come back with no answers. When I look back, I think I had anxiety attacks mixed with a vitamin overdose. I took a bottle of Flinstone vitamins and ate all of them and didn’t tell anyone until years later after I saw a documentary about how a kid had done the same and suffered the same type of symptoms I did. (In my defense they tasted like candy and were shaped like Flinstone characters- yum!) ANYWAYS, I remember there being something very special about being anointed with oil and prayed for. That’s all I really remember…and the fact that I wasn’t fond of how the oil made my hair look. This time, I realized how special and holy it was to me. I don’t think it is a magical wave of a wand that is meant to make me all better. Instead, it reminded me of the deep love and care my Maker has for little ole me. It reminded me that in our weakest moments, God forces us to ask for help from others. It reminded me how good community is. It reminded me that to see God, I had to become my most vulnerable. Did that prayer heal me of my illnesses? No. It did something much bigger. It soaked my soul in holiness, hope, community, dependence, humility and restoration.

And, in a way it did make me feel “better”. I’m now strong enough to move on, even in my physical state, to love others deeper, wider and stronger. It forced me to get over it and look at a much wider perspective.

and then there’s you. you have given me the greatest joy this week. the type of joy all the moms that have gone before me have told me as I was head over toilet, throwing up and asking “what have i gotten myself into?!” “but it’s so worth it” they would smugly say. “you’ll forget about all of this when the baby is here” i would weakly nod my head and subconsciously roll my eyes because those words only tease me in the here and now of the struggle. but you, blueberry show me a glimpse that speaks much louder than their good hearted comforts. you have been busily dancing away in my tummy- wild enough that i can feel you through out the day. in odd places where i just cant wrap my mind around what’s going on inside of me while i order coffee or get a root canal. its a bizarre and wonderful sensation. like a special secret that i only know about. the kind you really want to loudly proclaim but can’t because your best friend swore you to secrecy. you twirl and twist and oddly im much more at home with the feeling than i previously thought i would be. you surprise me daily. you’re moving as i type this, connecting me to my thoughts and screen scribbles in a new way. your dad is overly jealous and anxious to feel you more than ever. so impatient, that dad of yours. bless him. as he was trying to find your heartbeat on the doppler, you surprised the both of us with your 1st big kick. with a loud “POP!” to the doppler, your dad’s eyes almost popped out of his head. he spent the better part of the night trying to recreate the moment, pressing on my belly, trying desperately to entice you to strike back. you played hard to get and he sulked back to his side of the bed, defeated. already working him. totally whipped. warms my heart so much. 

18 weeks

we then proceeded to watch unreasonable amounts of YouTube videos of babies moving around inside mama bellies. we were equally traumatized and in awe by the experience.

The music is so dramatic.

 

Love you.

Mom

14 Weeks

Dear Blueberry,

We’re 14 weeks! You have grown to the size of a large navel orange- its crazy to imagine! I can feel a small part of my stomach is more dense and tighter and it freaks me out when I feel it. You are busy working out and have turned my uterus into a Baby YMCA. Your still practicing kicking, curling toes and working your arms. You are also practicing breathing, sucking and swallowing. 14 wks

 

I’ve had one of the best weeks yet of being pregnant. Nausea hasn’t been hanging around as often and I’ve got a little bit more pep in my step. However, my emotions have taken over. I cry nearly every day and I am so sensitive. Your Daddy has been so comforting and making sure he gives me extra love and comfort. My cup overflows because of his love. You will be so blessed by him.

My face has totally broken out and it’s out of control. I will take the crazy, over-emotional and 13 year old break outs over nausea and throwing up ANY day!

I’ve not been craving anything lately but now that my nausea is at bay, I’ve been trying to load up on major super foods like fruit, leafy greens and whole grain. I sometimes have enough courage to eat chicken (the only animal protein I eat) now and again but it’s a rare occasion that I do. I will have my next appointment at 16 weeks and then another one at 20 weeks to see you on the ultrasound and find out if you will be a London June or a Finley Monroe!

Everyone asks what I think you will be and I have to say that I’m feeling a girl vibe. I have tried so hard not to because I didn’t want to be one sided but I simply can’t help it. Your Dad has said this from day one but we will shall see in 6 weeks. I can hardly wait! I have been busy creating Pinterest nursery decor boards. One for a girl and one for a boy. London June’s Nursery Inspiration and Finley Monroe’s Nursery Inspiration. I’ve also been pinning a lot of advice, tips and articles about breastfeeding, labor, sleeping schedules and etc. Mommy in the Making Board . If you can’t tell, I’m already head over heels, obsessed with you! I think of you all the time!

Love you,

Mom

 

 

13 Weeks.

Just like the number 13, this week was just awkward. Nothing terrible or even bad. Just awkward.

It reminds me a lot of how I felt when I was 13. I knew that I was an official teenager, but didn’t necessarily have the guts to own it just yet. I was awkward. I had make up but didn’t know how to use it, hair product that couldn’t save a perm gone bad (oh, so very bad) and boobs that didn’t know what they were doing.

And at 13 weeks pregnant, I find myself with similar feelings of that awkward stage I long to suppress.

This past week, nausea has been so much better! (PRAISE JESUS!) I only had one really bad experience whilst preparing meals on wheels for Christmas with our church. I began to season a humongous bowl of sliced apples with nutmeg, sugar and cinnamon when I was overwhelmed by the sweet smells. I ran out of that kitchen like my booty was on fire. Several sips of ginger ale, (that I keep on hand at all times) a Zofran and 30 minutes of rocking myself on a stairway, I was back to normal. I’m becoming a pro on handling this nausea business- like a ninja.

Now back to the awkward. You have definitely moved from my left hip bone to right smack dab to the middle of my belly! It took us a while to find your heart beat on the doppler because we were trying to find you in your old hangout spot. Now, you are much, much easier to find! It used to take us a good 15 minutes to find you, because you were far back there. Now, Dad can find you within a minute and your heart is so strong and fast. Usually measuring around 150-170 bpm! Because you have moved to the front of my belly, I am definitely seeing a baby pouch. It is a lost cause to suck in these days- it’s just too uncomfortable. I’m having to learn to just let go (both literally & emotionally) and accept that this is really happening. Of course, I knew this was happening for quite some time now but now you’re making a physical appearance it’s really sinking into my pores.

Today I changed 3 different times before exiting the house. I just felt awkward and not very pretty or beautiful at all. I didn’t want to be seen in public and it put me in a foul mood. My brilliant self decided this would be the best time to get your Dad to take my 13 week photo (because I have been putting it off all week and I thought we better do it before I turn 14 weeks tomorrow). This was a terrible idea because seeing my pouch and how my new dress didn’t hang just right led to a downward spiral of emotional roller coaster. I ended up snapping at your Dad because he asked me where something was a bajillion times even though I told him I would look in my purse once we were in the car. I then blamed my disappointment of my 13 week photo on your Dad’s lack of photography skills. He picked up quickly why I was being such a peel and told me he knew I didn’t feel good about my body but he thought I was absolutely beautiful. At first, I wanted to smack him because, well, I’m not sure why but then I tried to believe it and smiled a little. As we drove to lunch at one of our favorite spots (Taco Mamacita) I decided it was time to stop being a 13 year old about this and accept that I’m going to be big as a house. I’m going to put my big girl (okay, my extra big girl) panties on and suck it up. The bigger I get, the closer I get to holding you. Bottom line. Even if the bottom line is bigger than I would like.

So even though I am not feeling my most confident, I’m posting my 13 week photo. Because I want to remember it all. The good, the bad and the ugly. I want you to see my struggles and my victories. I hope it gives you the courage to do the same one day.

Share your vulnerabilities. It sucks. Big time. But every time you do, you become more of who your Maker gloriously made you. You become braver. You become wilder. You become you. 

Me awkwardly at 13 weeks carrying my proudest joy, my biggest adventure, my most prized possession.

photo-10

In a few weeks, I will look back and laugh at how annoyingly dramatic I am being. When I’m as big as a whale, I’ll want to kick my awkward 13 weeks ass. I’m allowed to say ass. You are not.

Love you always,

Mom

The Thrifty Mama

Baby,

This Mama isn’t afraid of a bargain. In fact, I thrive on them. I geekily adore thrifting and finding unique treasures to make our home, home. My Mom (your Mum Mum) is the reason I am who I am, she loves to thrift too.  I love repurposing and thinking creatively. Your Daddy does too- he made me a bed out of reclaimed barn wood and it’s one of my favorite treasures. I love yard saling and Goodwill. Oh, how I love Goodwill. Some might think it’s grubby, but that’s because they haven’t truly embraced it for all it’s shiny goodness. I usually look for household items & antique sheets (they are the best!). I very rarely find clothes because that takes another caliber of patience that I don’t possess. Lately, however, I’ve kept my eyes peeled for baby things. My last Goodwill shop was very successful!

picstitch

 

I found a never been used, still in the packaging Boppy Cover for $4. Granted, it’s pink so if you don’t come out as a London June I will have to pass it on to someone with a girl. Either way, it was a steal and had to scoop it up when they are usually $10-$20 in stores.  I also found 2 brand new never been opened, GLASS(!) Born Free bottles. I was planning on using glass bottles and was extremely happy to find this brand…at Goodwill! I will have to buy the nipples and accessories but it would be impossible to find these anywhere else for $2.99 each. Steal of the century. (They are usually $20 for 3)

I haven’t been out of the house in 3 days because I have been so sick with a cold and I’m going stir crazy. I need to get out and about and have a date with myself. Coffee shop & Goodwill? Sounds like the perfect pick-me-up!  Well babe, off I go to try to score some baskets for Christmas presents at you guessed it, Goodwill. I’ll see what other loot I can find too.

Love,

Your Thrifty Momma

 

Craving Alert

All I want in the world is:

 

 

tumblr_m5zi9svAhp1ro5ry1o1_500

 

 

pomegranate.

I need it.

I can’t remember the last time I’ve had it but this is by far the strongest I have craved anything yet. Your Dad is on the night shift so I’m trying to contemplate whether or not to get out of my pjs, fix my hair and run to the grocery at 10pm.

decisions, decisions.

Love,

Mom

Excuse me, but I’m NOT glowing?

The pregnancy glow is a lie.

There is nothing glowing about me.

or this pregnancy.

All I do is:

throw up

get a cold (Im on my third one already)

get heart burn

get up to pee 3 times a night

and other unmentionable, heinous acts.

Baby, I love you. I truly do with all my soul. 

But this pregnancy thing so far, rips.

And if one more person uses the term PREGGO or PREGGERS to refer to my current state, I will slap them with a sandwich.

Love,

Mom.

12 Weeks

We are finally 12 weeks and the chance of anything traumatic has dramatically gone down. I sigh a tiny bit of relief. 

You are now the size of a PEACH! That’s pretty big and its hard to wrap my head around that I have a peach sized baby inside of me! I’m not showing yet although my favorite jeans are a little harder to zip up- I’ve been sticking to dresses and yoga pants as of late.

This week you are grasping, sucking and hiccuping and your vocal chords are forming. You are really becoming quite the little person. 

Thankfully, my nausea has settled down the past couple of days but I’m not too hopeful that it is completely gone. Earlier this week, it was absolutely horrible and had me in tears at work. I finally called the midwives and begged for medication. They happily prescribed Zofran and it has been working like a dream! I wish I had done it sooner. My newest symptom is heart burn. At first, I was unsure what was going on because I have never had heart burn in my entire life! It feels as if something is on fire and stuck in my chest. I thought it was because I hadn’t swallowed my pre-natal vitamin well but after it lingered all day I knew it had to be heart burn. I will take it over nausea and throwing up any day!  

Daddy and I have been wondering if you will be a boy or a girl a lot these days. If you are a girl, we will name you London June. If you are a boy, we have said August Monroe. Today though, I am not sure if I am 100% on August. I love the name Avery or Archer for a boy too but your Dad is in love with August and is not budging. We shall see! Maybe you will make it easier for us and be a girl so we don’t have to decide on a boy’s name. 

Christmas is soon approaching and I have to buy a few more presents. Next year, I will be buying you Christmas presents! You will be six or almost 7 months old by then. That’s unfathomable to think about right now! 

Thursday evening, we went to Opryland Hotel to see the Christmas lights with Granny Boo, Paps, Mum Mum, Pop Pop, Aunt Whitney and Walker. I think it was really good for Granny Boo to see the lights and she particularly enjoyed the life sized nativity scene. 

Image

Your Dad & I in front of a ridiculously sized poinsettia tree. Image

 

 

My 11 Week Photo I forgot to post: Image

 

Love you Bebe. 

Mom