I guess you could say these Leftovers posts got put on the back burner for a little while, and by a little while, I mean AN ENTIRE YEAR. I can hardly believe it’s been a whole year since I last shared a glimpse into what’s happening in our lives outside of the kitchen. Back then, I still had a cute little baby bump and eyes that weren’t glazed over from sleep deprivation. So much has happened in that time. Holidays, vacations, books read, movies watched. Oh, and this little sweet pea entered our lives.
Patrick joined us in the wee hours of the morning on August 3rd. Less than 48 hours earlier, I was waddling around the Ohio State Fair, eating corn dogs, totally convinced I was going to be at least a week late (my due date was the 6th). You can read a little more about Patrick’s birth story here, but suffice it to say it was fast, furious, and certainly memorable.
Motherhood is everything I imagined it to be and a whole lot more. I am filled with the kind of wild, irrational love that makes you beg, long, and plead for your baby to sleep, but then feels compelled to check on him every hour to make sure he’s still breathing. Truly, I have never felt so many intense emotions (or been covered in so many bodily fluids) than I have in the last 9 months. What a hilarious, tender, fierce, agonizing, beautiful journey this has been. I can’t wait for more of the same.
Here are a few highlights from the year:
Was he ever really this small?? Gah, I can’t even stand it. This was back in the early, early days when there was so much sleeping…and so little sleeping. That last one in the bottom right? His first wedding. So dapper.
First Halloween! This picture still makes me crack up every time. Isn’t he just the cutest little lumberjack you ever did see?
Look at his face. He knows he’s got us wrapped around his little finger.
This kid looooves Cara Cara oranges, the big red chair at Lynd’s Fruit Farm, and making us laugh with all his crazy expressions. He’s not so sure about Santa.
In January, we had Patrick dedicated at our church. We are so thankful to be surrounded by so many friends and family who are supporting us, loving us, and praying for us as we try to raise our little one to know the grace and love of Jesus.
Will surprised me with tickets to Beauty and the Beast in March, and it was so nice to dress up and hit the town together. That month we also traveled to Florida and Dallas to visit family. Patrick loved the sand and hated the ocean (it was a wee bit chilly), and really loved watching all his older cousins run around!
Earlier this month, my nephew got married (Yes, my nephew!! How is that possible??). We had such a fun time getting all dressed up, and Patrick charmed the pants off everyone in the vicinity.
We are lucky Patrick is a chill and generally happy baby. These last few months in particular have been especially sweet. He’s crawling and pulling himself up on furniture now, which means the majority of my days are spent rescuing him from places he’s gotten trapped or pulling him away from the dog’s water bowl. He has the orneriest grin, an infectious laugh, and a penchant for clapping for himself, which melts my heart every time. He’s also afraid of grass, but loves being outside. Seeing the world through his eyes brings me so much joy.
Surprisingly, I have still found time to read these last few months (hey, you gotta do something during all those nursing sessions). I plan to stay much more up to date on these book reviews, but here are the best books I’ve read. If you’d like to see a full running list (including the ones I read and didn’t like so much–check out my Books I’ve Read So Far in 2016 list on The List App. Side Note: The List App (now just Li.st) is such a fun and friendly social media site. If you haven’t tried it out yet, do yourself a favor and sign up!).
French Kids Eat Everything– I was utterly fascinated by this book. It’s written by a Canadian woman who married a Frenchman and moved to France with her two typically picky toddler-aged children. She shares her rather intense introduction into French food culture and the challenges and joys her and her children faced as they acclimated to the change. Obviously, I knew food was important to French culture, but I honestly had no idea how central it is to their parenting, education system, and lifestyle. This book was entertaining and informational without being judgmental. I think there is a lot to be learned from the French approach, which emphasizes fresh and beautiful foods, eating everything in moderation, and making meal time a festive, fun, and foundational part of their social and professional lives.
The Life Changing Magic of Tidying Up– I know, I know, I’m about a century behind on this one. Truthfully, I found most of this book to be a little over the top. I don’t believe my socks need to rest or that my stuff has feelings, but after feeling claustrophobic with all the baby stuff in our plenty-big-for-us-home, I decided I needed to make a change. So even though I eye-rolled my way through at least 25% of this book, the basic principle of keeping only what brings me joy has totally changed the way I clean house. I used to keep things out of guilt or principle or even practicality, but this new mindset has given me the freedom to truly lighten up. I love not being burdened by so much stuff, and have found I’m already appreciating the things I do have much more.
The Bookseller– To be honest, I had a lot of so-so fiction reads over the last few months, but this one was a favorite. The main character, Kitty, struggles between two alternate realities, the one in her dreams and the one she wakes up to every day. I flew through this book. It was a nice combination of lightheartedness and depth–just what I’m looking for in a summer read.
My most popular post of the last
month year was this Creamy Chicken Sausage Tortellini Soup. I made a bunch of this (sans tortellini) before the baby was born and froze it. When we were in need of a quick, stress-free dinner (which, let’s face it, is nearly every night with a newborn) I would just pull it out, pop it in the pan, reheat to boiling, add tortellini and be done! Golden.
If you’re looking for more glimpses into our lives, or if you really just need a cute baby fix, be sure to follow me on Instagram! I hope you all have a wonderful summer. Soak up the sunshine, read some good books, and have fun with your families! If you have any recommendations for good summer reads, please share! I’m always on the hunt for my next favorite!
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