Grae Elizabeth's Birth story

I've been trying to find the words to type up her birth story for weeks but I decided to post this marco polo I sent to 2 of my best friends because it tells the story and if I type it up, it will be 100 pages long. This first video was made a day after we got home from the hospital and the second video was made 8.5 weeks after Grae's birth. The second video is just an update on how we are all doing and more details that my doctor had told us about. Videos have been removed for some privacy but here is a much shorter version below.

Overall, I am so so SO grateful that Grae is safe and here and perfect. We love her SO much!!!! We are forever bonded through her birth and I will never take her for granted because she is 100% a miracle and a blessing for our family. We all are completely in love with our little Grae baby. Her middle name is Elizabeth because that is my middle name and it fit perfectly with her first name. We are all forever changed from this experience but in the best way. We hold life even more close than we ever did before and it just makes us so so soooo much more grateful to have our 2 perfect little girls to love on forever and ever. These pictures are some of my favorite from my birth. They hold so much emotion and memory of that night. Darian gave us so many photos that I will cherish forever because they are memories of our miracle, but I am keeping most of them to myself because they really are so so so special to me.

That night they called a code crimson because I needed so much blood for a transfusion. Every little detail (especially the details where Grae and my lives were saved) I am grateful for. It would be so easy for me to forever be sad about what happened, but I want to be grateful for the miracles. I know God didn't cause this to happen, but he let it happen. He also blessed us to have all the staff that we needed that night to preform everything perfectly for us. I feel like we are especially supposed to be here, and we have a deeper purpose that God will help us figure out as time goes on. I am a little numb to everything, I don't like to think too much about it and I don't know if I've let myself fully feel everything emotionally, but right now I am doing pretty good. Just mostly trying to focus all of my energy towards my girls and Jason, because they are the most important things to me. Since I am still recovering from the hernia repair, I haven't been able to fully do all the things I can't wait to do (like carrying BOTH my girls, going places more often, working out and gaining strength again, etc) but that time will soon come to be normal again. Right now I am trying hard to focus and soak in all of these first months of Grae's life and all the adorable little details about her and her growing personality.

Photos are by Darian Clouse Photography and birth video is by Ashlie Jeanne films

19.5 weeks with baby #2 and a life update!

Giving the baby kisses <3 

A few surprises around here!

1. We bought a house and moved in the end of June, it has been so great to have a place with so much space for Brighton to run around and to be able to paint and decorate exactly how WE want! The mortgage isn't super fun, but that's adulting, right??! Brighton LOVES having a backyard and I LOVE making this place ours!

2. I AM PREGNANT!! Baby #2 is a confirmed girl and I couldn't be more stoked! More on that below

3. We moved Brighton to a big girl bed!!! We went to Mexico a few weeks ago and she stayed at Grandma and papas. She only wanted to sleep in a bed so we didn't want to ruin a good thing and decided to move her on over right away! She is so little in her queen bed but she loves it so so much! She turned 2 in August (can you believe it??) and is talking SO MUCH! She is our absolute light and I don't think I'll ever be able to express to her how much I love her and how grateful I am that she is ours forever! Lately she LOVES having her fingers and toes painted pink (her pick, can't blame her!) She copies everything we say and do. She always says "oh shoot!" and "oh man!" because apparently Jason and I say those phrases a lot hahaha. I was just glad I said shoot instead of, well, you know.

Pregnancy update!
I am currently 19.5 weeks (20 weeks this Thursday) so I am HALF WAY THROUGH! So far this pregnancy has flown by pretty quick. I think it's mostly because I am distracted with chasing around my little ray of sunshine (and ENERGY BALL) all day long. I'm grateful for her distractions, though! I was sick a lot up until a few weeks ago, but not AS sick as I was with Brighton. Most days I have to kind of just suck it up because I feel so guilty sitting at home and not taking Brighton out to do fun things. I'm also not a homebody at all so being at home too long drives me crazy, too!

We have a few annual passes to a few fun kid places which is nice because 1. it's indoors and AZ is literally hot as hell. and 2. She can run around and I just follow her.  Luckily I have been feeling a lot better so we have been going out a lot more and more. I feel kind of bad, this pregnancy I haven't really done much updating at all! I feel like with Brighton, my business, and Jason/ family time, I ran of of room for anything else! I want to at least do a few updates when I remember to snap a few pictures and sit down to write.

We used Sneak Peak test to do an early blood test around 12 weeks to find out the gender so we have known for a few months! Since it is only 99.9% accurate (hahaha ONLY) we were going to wait until the anatomy scan (aka today) to tell friends and family the gender. Wellllll I can't keep a secret, especially when I am excited about something, and I told a lot of my close friends before we announced. We ended up announcing a few weeks ago to family and it was so funny to see the reactions! Jason and I and most of our family were CONVINCED she would be a HE. I think my  mothers intuition broke or something for a minute hahah.  Obviously I am SO excited to give Brighton a sister and I guess since it's a girl I can admit that I totally wanted another girl reallllly bad. Jason is excited but also REALLY wants a boy, 3rd time's the charm, right ;) If I can convince Jason to have one more baby after this, we MAY get a boy but I also wouldn't mind a house full of cute girls! It would be my dream come true!

Lately I am just super sleepy and hungry but that's better than the nausea I had earlier so I'll take it! We can't agree on a name (surprised?? haha) but we also named Brighton like a week before she was born so I guess it is just a trend! We always agree on boy names but we have different tastes on girl names. So for now she is baby girl! I really want to have a VBAC this time around so I've been trying to prepare my body for that as well! Most people say I am crazy, but I still want to go all natural if possible, wish me luck!!

Overall we are doing so great and enjoying settling into our house and prepping for our new baby. I can't believe we will have 2 kids this January or February but I'm excited for the craziness and MATCHING OUTFITS OBVIOUSLY!


a VERY late Christmas + NYE post


Ok I know this post is inching its way into March but I STILL want to remember Brighton's second Christmas :) The presents had been wrapped for nearly all of December and after the first few days of touching them and me telling her not to, she got over them. On Christmas, I think she was confused why we were opening them but she liked all of her new toys! I wanted to get her cute wooden toys because #millennial but also because I've read a little about monsouri and how apparently wood toys are good for growth and development!

The thing I was MOST excited about was making her kitchen! I had found a goldmine of ideas on pinterest to redo the ikea kid's kitchen so I couldn't wait to make Brighton's! Jason tried to surprise me by getting it all put together and painted but I seem to have a 6th sense where whenever he is trying to surprise me with something sweet I always seem to walk in and see what he's doing. He helped a ton and I am SO happy with how it turned out! It's taken her a little bit of time to start really understanding it and wanting to play with it but I think it will be so fun for her to have as she grows up and likes to play pretend more.

My dad and 2/3 of my brothers came over Christmas day and we did more present opening and just hung out for a while. Later that afternoon, we went to Jason's parents house to see all of his family and that involved more present opening and FOOD. aka the best part of the holidays. Jason's parents got me a kitchen aid that I have LOVED so much!! I find reasons to blend things in it because I'm basically a child and that stuff is so fun for me haha. Jason got me TAYLOR SWIFT tickets (!!!!!!!) and a necklace I've been wanting. I can't WAIT to go to the concert together in a few months! I think Jason secretly loves Taylor as much as I do ;)

New years eve was really chill but still so fun! We went and saw family, ate food, the works! I tried to get a cute confetti picture and this is the best I could do haha forever grateful that Jason will take pictures with me even though it may be his least favorite thing to do. He'll be grateful when we're old and wrinkly and we can look back at our life together, right?!

NYE night, my twin brother came over and one of Jason's friends came over and we just played ticket to ride until midnight and then set off some fireworks! Our neighbor came outside right we we were almost done and got mad that we were doing fireworks, like sorry for setting them off on New year...?

It was fine though and since I barely make it to midnight these days, I was happy to go to bed and get some sleep! Jason does a bow hunt every New Years day that he looks forward to all year so he woke up super early to leave and get us a pig. A javelina... not my favorite animal to eat but Jason is basically Katnis and got one!

So far this year has been really good! I always love making goals and new beginnings and I am so excited to see what else happens in 2018!

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