A LETTER TO MY FIRST-BORN SON

Dear Barrett,

Last night, you were squished between me, this big baby bump, and all the couch pillows as we cuddled before I tucked you into bed. I looked down as you held my hand and tapped your fingers against mine. I laid there in awe of the fact that you were mine and felt so completely and utterly whole. Just then, your little brother kicked and I instantly started to cry. They were tears of happiness and sadness all at once. In less than two weeks, you will no longer be an only child and your whole works is going to be turned upside down. As happy and excited as I am to see you take on your new role as big brother, I mourn the loss of you being my only baby.

Mommy and Daddy hoped and prayed for you, and we were blessed (and continue to be blessed) beyond measure. We hoped and prayed to be able to give you a sibling, and in the blink of an eye, your brother is on his way. While I can’t promise that this change is going to be easy, I can promise you this:

I promise to love

I will love you unconditionally, just like I have from the day you were born. I vow to love you with a love so intense that it multiplies exponentially with each passing second. My love for you will not diminish or decrease, nor will it be split in equal parts with each child we bring into this world. Your love will always be your love, and its presence will always be known.

I promise to protect

I will protect you from the monsters of this world; whether they are living under your bed, in the attic, or the unfortunate evils this world has come to know. I may not always be able to stop bad things from happening to you, but I am going to do my best to make sure we face the bad together.

I promise to do my very best

I vow to be the best Mommy for you that I can be. Perhaps more importantly, I promise to acknowledge when I’m not and apologize accordingly. The coming days are going to be hard on all of us and I may lose my patience or not give you the attention you deserve, but know that I am giving you my all at ALL times.

I promise to love you for you

“Comparison is the thief of joy,” they say. I promise to do my best to not compare you to your brother (and vice versa) in a negative light. I will always love you for who you are and never for a second will I wish you were different. I will not let label nor criticism tarnish your spirit, and hope that you won’t either.

I promise to always be excited to see you

The moment you entered our lives, the most favorite part of my day became any moment I spent with you. Once I went back to work, I counted down the minutes until I could see your face again and hold you in my arms. I vow to always be excited to see your face, no matter what kind of day I have had or how rough it may have been.

I promise to embrace every sticky-faced kiss and every leap into my arms as your tiny feet race toward me calling, “Mommy!” One day those things will stop, and I will miss them dearly.

So baby boy, with all the change that lies ahead, please remember my love for you. I just know you are going to be the BEST big brother and cannot wait to see you take on this adventure with Mommy and Daddy.

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Second Baby Must-Haves

This post is sponsored by DockATot. Free product was provided in exchange for this review, but as always opinions are always my own. Thanks for your support!

When it comes to baby gear, the options are endless and overwhelming. During the registry process for my first-born, I was so overwhelmed that I actually cried in the baby aisle of Target. I just couldn’t even begin to grasp what we might need when we didn’t even know him yet!

When sitting down to consider what I really need for our sweet baby number two, one thing kept popping into my mind: “work smarter, not harder”. After figuring things out on the fly with my eldest, I am ready and prepared to only purchase/pull out of storage products that I know will benefit our family as we attempt to navigate a newborn and a toddler who will be two years apart.

1. DockATot

If you’re a parent on social media, there’s no way you’ve escaped the infamous DockATot. This multi-functional gem can be used for safe co-sleeping or just as a comfy, cozy, easy-to-transport lounger for naps, lounging, and playtime. It comes in two sizes – I have the Deluxe+ for babies 0-8 months, and there’s also the Grand for 9-36 month kiddos; moms love it for its ease of use and 100% natural cotton material. They have so many fun prints to choose from but this mama loves white so I chose the Pristine White cover.

And when I saw DockATot recently came out with toy arches that can be attached directly to the lounger, I knew I had to have it! Multi-purpose is the way to go and how cute are those little crinkly animals? I can’t wait for Emerson to see them.

2. Dual Baby Monitor

Most monitors that allow for multiple cameras don’t allow for multiple views on the monitor. Switching back and forth is a pain in the booty, to say the least. This Summer Infant one gives you a split screen to let you watch both kiddos at the same time. We have been using it for about 4 months with our oldest and it has been great so far!

3. Baby Carrier

I was a big time baby wearer the first time around with Barrett. I loved having the ability to be hands free but still keep him close to me. I know this is going to be even more helpful once Emerson arrives because lets face it, I am going to need all the hands I can get chasing a toddler around with a newborn. I used our Solly wrap most of the time but recently invested in a Wild Bird ring sling that I can’t wait to try out!

4. Double Stroller

We had the Baby Jogger City Mini with Barrett these first two years and absolutely loved it! We decided to stick with the same company but upgrade to the City Select which can be used as a single or double stroller and has so many different seat variations. So far we are loving it with the single seat and are so anxious to try it with both!

5. GOOD Burp Cloths

This one may seem silly and a little odd to have on this list but one of my first thoughts after finding out we were adding another baby to the family is “I really need to stock up on more burp cloths” HAHA! Barrett was a drool and spit-up king and they came in handy for so many other things whether on the go our during a feeding session. I found that cloth diapers make the absolute best burp cloths. Granted they aren’t all that cute but they sure are efficient!

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Graham Family | Phoenix Family Photographer

Have you ever seen a cuter little family? Yeah, me either ;)

The Graham Family was so much fun and I couldn’t believe how sweet all three of these boys were! Mom and Dad are clearly doing something right! I just love seeing how different family dynamics work and when you come across a family who is doing an amazing job at raising their little’s, they deserve a little virtual high-five, am I right or am I right?

Here are just a FEW of my favorites from their Fall session with me! Enjoy!

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Grant’s Newborn Session | Phoenix Newborn Photographer

This newborn session is hands down one of my favorites to date! It could have something to do with the fact that this family has two boys, two years apart just like we will come December. It was so fun to see the dynamic of two little boys and picture myself here in just a few short weeks.

Here are just a few of my favorites from our session together!

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Fall Dining Room Tour 2017

Our home is not something I share a ton of on social media and it occurred to me that I have no idea why! My passion ( besides being a mama, a wife, and photography ) is definitely home decor, renovation, etc! Okay, so maybe I have a lot of passions ;)

 After sharing our big kitchen reveal with you just a few weeks ago and Emerson’s nursery shortly after, I realized how much I loved sharing our home with you all. We have been in our current home for a little over a year now and we have done so much to it to make it more “us” but there are still quite a few things on the list! I am currently on the hunt for a fun buffet/sideboard to go on the back wall in this room! The extra storage would be great but I think it will really anchor the room since our whole house is pretty open concept. I love to redo furniture and have painted many pieces in our home already so I am just waiting for the right piece to come along size/shape wise, and I can transform it to make it our own.

Most of the sources are listed below! Feel free to ask any questions you may have or if you are curious about where I got something :)

Thanks for following along guys!

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SOURCES:

Table: Thrift store then painted by me

Bench: My hubby built it :)

Chairs: Craigslist

Floating Shelves: Cascade Iron Company

Super Market Sign: Decor Steals

Ceramic Pumpkins: Target

Light Fixture: Amazon

Plate Rack: We built it almost 4 years ago!

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