Bea videos

Happy Birthday, Bea

Today marks the second year of life complete for our Bea.  What a great two years it has been!



Bea was born early in the morning of May 18, 2013.    I held her with a second-time mother’s confidence and also a second-time mother’s love.  Loving her and all of the wonderful things that came with her, came easily.

Bea was an easy babe from the start.  Still to this day, it is rare for her to have an “off day”, be fussy, or to not have a toothy smile pushing up her chubby cheeks no matter what the day brings..

When she walks, she bounces, curls dancing behind her.  There are two things that strangers always comment on: her smile or her curls.  bDSC_0172 2 bDSC_0178_2

The only trial she’s given us is keeping her safe.  She is curious, a risk taker, and a mouther.  Each day that has brought us closer to the two year mark has helped me breathe little sighs of relief as she learns boundaries and we are able to communicate more effectively with each other.  Still, we have a much better ER track record with this one (0 times vs. 4 times for MG), and despite being a mouthy baby, she does stay relatively healthy.

Watching the sister relationship grow and form has always held intense interest for me.  MG has played a mothering role in Bea’s life upon meeting her and it has yet to cease.  Bea only half-heartedly accepts having another “mother” in her life.  I think it is only as of late that she enjoys MG’s company and companionship.  This is one of our most earnest prayers that their relationship will strengthen and flourish.

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One thing I have noticed lately is that whenever MG is not around, Bea is a bit lost.  She looks for her, asks about it, and doesn’t seem to know how to entertain herself when she realizes she is on her own.  Sharing a room, I think, has brought them physically, as well as emotionally closer.  They both find one another’s presence reassuring.  I do not regret that decision one bit.

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Bea is a great source of joy in our family.  She keeps me lighthearted when I am feeling off.  She shows her love with kisses and full-body hugs.  She is loud and boisterous and social, in a way I find totally intriguing.  I often catch her waving at strangers and they find her perma-smile nearly irresistible.

As I look ahead to year three, I anticipate many big changes coming down the lane….losing paci, potty-training, moving to a “big girl bed”, and joining us for the church service (rather than the nursery).  Year three is a hard year….but I do think our joyful little girl will do just fine.

Dearest Bea,

I’ll never forget the morning you joined our family.  I was waiting for you with big hopes.  I had spent many days hoping for you and many more hoping for your arrival.  I hoped you would be many things: a daughter, a sister, and a friend.  

In your two years of life, you have been a delight to our hearts.  You took all of my hopes, embodied them, and then completely surpassed them.   I can’t imagine there was ever an easier baby born.  Your sister has taken great joy in you and that has brought great joy to me.  You have brought something to our family that only a last-born child can bring…a sense of wholeness. 

Your personality is one that will be envied by many.  You are nearly unaffected by your surroundings, but are happy and content no matter the circumstances.  You are engaging and kind to strangers, welcoming to your friends and family.  I never worry about leaving you with others because I know you will just be yourself the entire time I’m away.  

Your personality, and the many people that love you, will help carry you through this big year full of changes. You are eager for some of the change, I can already tell.  Having a big Sis to look up to definitely gives you some hopes to aspire to.  But you get to do them your own “Bea way”.  That is the fun part about being the youngest.

I cannot imagine our family without you, though only two years ago, that’s where we were.  In my heart, I always knew there was something missing and you came along and filled that hole right up.  

I love you so very much,

sweet mama k

also, a video

Vacation 2014, part II

As promised, here is the video from our recent trip to Rosemary beach.

Rosemary Beach 2014 from Kate on Vimeo.

A few notes: MG is STILL obsessed with Sleeping Beauty.  Granny brought a Disney princess crown for her and she wore it nearly the entire time, as evidenced by the video.  When we went outlet shopping, we also took her to the Disney store and let her pick something out.  She chose a Sleeping Beauty nightgown.  Then we saw the Princess Sophia “dress-ups” were on major clearance and since she’s been very much into dress up lately, we had to have it.  (she’s never seen princess sophia but she knows who she is.  She has worn her dress-up every waking moment inside the house since our return.  I have a rule that she can’t leave the house in it…although she has tried).  Then, they got us again with $10 Sleeping Beauty dolls.  So she walked out with three things.  And it was pretty magical.


Bea is 1!

Yesterday Bea turned 1!  It was such a special day that I hope to share more about later this week.  I truly can’t believe how fast this year has flown and where we found ourselves exactly one year after her birth.


She has come so very far in a year.  She went from the happiest, easiest baby to a very busy, little Bea in such a short time.  She is walking about 75% of the time, babbling and saying a few words, growing in lots of hair and teeth and eating pretty much everything we do.  Her favorite “toy” is still my phone which she is slowly but surely, destroying….She loves to chew on the case and charge flap…so much so Lifeproof is sending me a brand new, free case and the sound no longer works on my phone unless you go through a few annoying steps to fix that….Oh well, no hard feelings!


Here is a look back at her first year of life!

Bea is 1 from Kate on Vimeo.

Dearest Bea,

“From the moment I saw you, I knew an adventure was going to happen,”

How fitting this quote is for your first year of life. You entered our world in a flurry of excitement and we’ve been riding that high ever since. So much of our lives has been through an upheaval this year, starting with your arrival. It has been one, fantastic adventure that all began with you. (now we are ready for things to settle down a bit :))

You are so precious to me, dear daughter. I’ve thanked God, not enough, but many times for giving me such an easy, happy baby. From day one you ate and slept well and were so pleasant when awake. You breezed through milestones, always just a bit ahead of the crowd and stayed so very healthy! (only one minor puking incident, which just so happens to be my least favorite sickness ever :().

You have been such a delight to our family. Your sister has been thrilled about your presence and has practically smothered you in hugs and kisses (literally, as in we constantly have to remind her to give you space). Your grandparents are over the moon for you and give you the attention you seek. Even strangers are constantly commenting on your easy smile and bubbly demeanor.

Your dad and I prayed for you for a long time. You didn’t come in our time table but from your due date arrival to your quick entrance, your timing was perfect. We feel so very blessed that God kept us waiting for you and had you in mind while He kept us waiting.

There is something special in a mother reserved for each of her children. I’d like to think that you, as the second, have received a much better version of me. A more confident, easy-going, prepared version, if you will. We have a special little bond, you and I, and I pray that it will only grow more intense with the years that may come.

I love you fiercely, little one. I am so proud to call you one of my mine,


One year ago today

Pardon all the sappiness but I’ve been doing so much reminiscing lately (as if you didn’t know-it’s been present in nearly all my posts this month!)

One year ago on the 12th was Mother’s Day. MG had broken her collarbone just a few days earlier and was still faithfully wearing her sling.


That  Mother’s day, I remember feeling the tiniest twinge of something going on in my abdomen sometime that afternoon. When it began repeating, I began watching the clock. With some regularity, something was going on every 15 minutes or so. It felt very surreal to be so full of life on such a meaningful day.

For reasons we’ve now forgotten, we stayed up late that evening watching a movie. Perhaps it was simply the laissez-faire attitude we’d adopted knowing the end was near and to throw all self-imposed limitations out the window.

We watched the academy award winning movie Zero Dark Thirty which was very intense. Once again I felt something going, this time a little stronger and I was sure the squeezing and tightening were symptoms of early contractions. I watched the red numbers on the DVD player while simultaneously focusing on the movie. Sure enough they were coming with some regularity but too faint to be excited about.

After finishing and thoroughly dissecting the movie, I told N about the contractions. He became very excited but it was also a wake-up call that this thing could happen at any minute. It was the boost we needed to finish up some things around the house.

I slept horribly that night with contractions coming and going in my dreams. Early that morning I eventually gave in, allowed myself to fully wake up, and begin timing them on my contraction app. Wouldn’t you know it but the minute I began to time them they began to dissipate.

In a way I was relieved because the time just didn’t feel right yet and it allowed me to catch a few more hours of sleep before tackling another day.

That all took place one year ago and the story picks up again here. One year later, the memories are still so very vivid. We didn’t know she would be joining us just five days later but we knew our lives were on the cusp of a huge change!

I don’t know why all of these little details are so meaningful to me but I suppose if you are a mom you may sympathize: these stories are etched so deeply on our mommy hearts that we will carry them with us for many years.

This week we will be reminiscing and remembering how Bea entered our lives. On Sunday we will sing and eat cake and we plan to throw a more formal party for her sometime in June.


It has been one wild and wonderful year,

Two Weeks

Less than two weeks until we have a one year old in the house!! She is definitely acting the part as she has been taking quite a few steps lately.  She took her first real steps on May 1, right before bed.  She had the three of us cheering her on! Each day she grows more and more confident

bringing home mayby from Kate on Vimeo.

These are the memories that flood me when I watch it:

-staying up later than I should with a newborn to work on it. . .Legs sticky from the heat of summer, windows open to let in the breeze (how I long for those days again!), my left arm asleep from holding her

-how I would crave and eat a chocolate chip milkshake every evening before going to bed…must have been a bit calcium deprived 🙂

-cradling my sleepy, sweaty baby that smelled like an intoxicating mix of milk and bath

-swaddle blankets…used and love those things dearly last summer

-feeling a bit of apprehension every night before laying down.  Was she going to sleep tonight?  Was she going to wake up constantly (we never had one night like that, for the record, thank you BEA!!)?  And worse, was she not going to wake up?

-how MG fully embraced her sister from the very first minute and that love has never wavered.  (that’s not to say she embraced her “new” mommy, but she finally came around :))  My heart could burst watching videos of their early moments together

-how everything comes full circle.   A year ago, Bea was a little stranger to us.  Now I look back and see the obvious: her preferred sleep position, the beginnings of an expressive smile, the hint of curly hair.

-how full my heart was.  Out of the adrenaline rush that began the moment my water broke came a high that lasted the summer nigh.

The summer of 2013, in all of its sticky, milky, sweaty, lovey glory was a season I will not soon forget