Dear December 2018,
You were the best!!! Christmas time is always the best time, but now that we are a family of 5… Everything was better than ever! We filled the month with family holiday functions and made sure the girls knew the real reason for the season – Jesus – Love came down! From live nativities to Santa, we did it all and made so many wonderful memories along the way. The best part of the month had to be our first Christmas Vacation and it was one we will never forget. Getting away to cold weather and indulging in Christmas spirit made this Christmas season our best yet! And it was so much fun watching Kensie enjoy her first Christmas! Thank you December 2018 for a month we adored.
We are so excited for 2019 and a new January of family-fun!
Shutterfly outdid themselves this year with their amazing 2018 Christmas cards selection.
As you know, we are big Shutterfly fans in this house, and once again I was pleasantly surprised with their adorable cards. Now that we are a family of five, I found that I gravitated towards the card options with more than 4 photo slots, so that I could highlight each of the girls.
This year I found that they really up-ed their game on the total card package. Not only are their card options fabulous, but their envelope liners and pre-addressed envelopes are so creative and colorful! I am all about the feeling you get when you pick-up a card out of your mailbox; the happy mail experience starts with the envelope!
Dear November 2018,
What a great month!
You were a month filled with gratefulness, thankfulness, and the reminder of kindness. November, we filled you up with great moments and treasured times… Mainly Kensie’s first cross-country adventure and our hubby/wife trip to Washington D.C. DC was beyond words – FABULOUS! We also celebrated daddy’s birthday, Thanksgiving, our first girl-only STAYcation slumber party and Christmas came early this year with decorating the house and setting up the tree.
November you were good to us, but we are so excited for Christmas and the holiday month of December! Bring on Jesus’ BIRTHDAY!!!
Dear October 2018,
You are always a month filled with PUMPKIN everything! This month we enjoyed the pumpkin patch, plenty of pumpkin spice, carving pumpkins, lots of candy corn, creative costumes, a fall festival and Kensie’s 1st Halloween!
Thank goodness the temperature has cooled down, it actually felt like fall for a few days this month with the added bonus of rain.
Soccer season has also kicked-in which is always a favorite around here, so we are excited for more sports-filled Saturdays.
But of course, November we are grateful for your arrival… Bring on the feast!
Dear September 2018,
You were a great month! We went on a few day trips, and our first family of 5 camping trip! The happiest camper was ironically the baby! The girls have enjoyed their first quarter of school, learning new things and sharing in special moments! Payton especially loved riding in a fire truck!
Fall festivities have begun, including our favorite – football! September has also kicked off the fall season with a little pumpkin spice, and now let’s get a move on to October and cooler temps!
Dear August 2018,
You were a busy month and truthfully, I am glad you are over…. only because we are now one month closer to cooler weather. I am ready for all things fall – football, cooler weather, pumpkin spice season… LET’S GO! Good bye August!
September, we are welcoming you with open arms!
Dear July 2018,
WOW doesn’t even cover it, what a month! You were a month of FIRSTS and very special occasions. First day of first grade, first day of preschool, and Kensie’s first swim, staycation & Diamondbacks Game! We had a 6th birthday, baby girl turned 3 months old, and we made our first trip to the mountains as a family of five! It was definitely one of my favorite months for our family, mainly because we made the most of every moment. Yay for family time!
August, you have very large shoes to fill! We are excited to see where this new school year takes us!
Newborn photos… oh, the good and the bad! They are the most loved photos for documenting the beginning of your new babies life. And yet, they are dreaded by all post-labor moms who are still healing and still packing around the post-labor body weight! It’s generally recommended to take newborn photos within the first two weeks of life. “It’ll be easy”, they said. “The baby will be cooperative”, they said. Well, how bout the poor momma who still looks eight months preggo and is now sleep deprived?! This is the hardest stage for the exhausted momma and family, and yet this is what we do…. and it’s SO worth it!
[Words I live by: The only picture you’ll regret is the one you didn’t take!]
With all three of my girls, my newborn photos have been some of the most cherished photos to me, but looking at them always brings back the reminder of the craziness going on behind the scenes. The lack of sleep, the cooperation of older kids, the spit up, the blow outs, and all the things we do for a good photo… bribery, silly noises/faces/dances and of course the occasion threat… #goodtimes & #stillsoworthit!
So with all the exhaustion, how do you pull it off without sinking the ship altogether?! Word of advice from one mom to another… I have always tried to plan ahead in the last weeks of pregnancy and prep everyone’s outfits for this photo shoot. I highly recommend doing this, so when the day arrives to take these photos… You are not scrambling to pull something together in the craziness of newborn cluster feedings and exhaustion. Well in advance, and with a clear mind, I will hang all of our outfits in my closet, already ironed and ready to go! Why wait until your in survival mode to get prepared and set up?! Also moms, remember that your body is still in eight months pregnancy mode… So choose an outfit that will be flattering to your “still kinda pregnant” body, i.e… a maternity dress, a flowy blouse or a button down top usually work great.
With that being said, here are a few of our favorites! Third time around and I am still so thankful for these photos. Like I said, they are so worth it! They document where we are as a family when our sweet Kensie joined the crew.
Thank you La Brisa Photography for capturing our family in the comfort of our home. These photos will always be cherished! You are the best!
Our third little girl has joined the family our life has been nonstop ever since! Newborns love attention and want to be held and loved on ALL.THE.TIME. While this time is precious for me, it can be hard to do with two other kiddos running around the house. So my “to-do” list has become more of a “if I can get to it” list. One item on my list that kept getting pushed off was making Kensie’s birth announcements. We had beautiful pictures taken by the fabulous La Brisa Photography. The edited images were back in a jiffy and just waiting for me to make the announcement. In my mind, I thought it would be such a daunting, time consuming task. Which is ridiculous because with Shutterfly, it is such a quick, easy and painless creation! I should have made them sooner.
This post was in collaboration with Shutterfly. (#partner) I received some of these items in exchange for an honest review. All thoughts and opinions are 100% my own. #MyShutterfly
Shutterfly is so easy to use and their quality and results are fabulous. I am a big fan! I was able to upload my beautiful newborn photos and create a photo card masterpiece in minutes. I was beyond thrilled with their card styles and options, that I actually found it hard to pick a favorite. I decided this time around to do something different and I created two cards to alleviate the pressure of choosing just one. I love that Shutterfly offers the opportunity to make each card your own, with the choice of card layouts, colors and fonts… It really is your own presonalized creation.
I made one card in a tri-fold/multi-sided style to give to my family members that want cuteness overload, and a more traditional 2-sided 6×8 photo card for our friends. Both birth announcements turned out fabulous and we couldn’t be more pleased!
: SHUTTERFLY BIRTH ANNOUNCEMENTS :