The Birthday Girl

We had our first kiddo birthday in our house this week and I wanted to share some pictures and memories from the day. Mostly so I don’t forget this moment in time. It was such a special day. I am just so grateful for my little family and that God has given me the opportunity to be mommy to these girls.

Before this week Teddy and JJ didn’t really understand what birthdays were and why they were so special. It made all of this so much more fun. Corey and I stayed up (really) late and decorated the downstairs and wrapped presents the night before the big. When we went up to bed I told Corey I was so excited I felt like a little kid the night before Christmas. I honestly didn’t know if I’d be able to sleep! We had such a blast thinking of things to do to really knock Teddy’s socks off and it worked. She was so surprised by when she came downstairs the next morning.


Opening her presents at the breakfast table. Pure excitement there :). She was so sweet, asking if the second and third presents were for JJ after she opened the first. They both call birthdays “happy birthdays,” so she kept asking “this for my happy birth-a-day??” I think she was in disbelief for awhile.


Later in the evening with her party dress on. We had a meal of spaghetti and chicken (so basically chicken parm ;):)..) at her request.


These little friends. I’m not sure any of them sit still long enough to get a good picture of all three. They’re going to grow up like siblings, and I love it! (Also, can we pause for a moment and notice the beautiful table Corey MADE for our family?!?! This was our inaugural meal on it. It is SO beautiful, I can’t stop staring at it!!)


Waiting for her cake and candles. I love the Hello Kitty phase, it kind of makes me want to freeze time because I know in the next couple years she’ll outgrow the fascination and it’s just so cute right now!!


She tried to blow out her candles mid “Happy Brithday,” and I was trying to stop her. My face is totally cracking me up ;).


Blowing our her first birthday candles on her first ever birthday cake. Love.


Kisses from mommy.



The best way to get birthday cake to your mouth?? Scoop it right in!


We had such a great day celebrating an amazing little girl. We can’t wait for the next birthday!




Favorite Things {5.1.16 Edition}

This week has been such a great one! I’ve been off the unit since Sunday (and I’m not back until next Wednesday, yay!!), and it’s been such a nice little break. I also feel like I got some extended time with the girls, which was so much fun. Some pictures from our week below :).

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My goal was to work out one time this week. I have not worked out at all since October (!!). Uganda just kind of messed everything up, and then I didn’t want to rush leaving the girls in the kids area. Well, I’m happy to report I got to work out TWICE this week!! This is a picture post work-out while the girls were having quiet time. I had my leggings on, book in hand, and a warm chai. Hopefully I’ll be able to get back to the gym several times next week too. I’ll report back!


I posted this on my Instagram earlier this week. The girls were all.over. Corey after small group on Monday. Lots of screaming “daddy! daddy!” I think Corey was totally in his element (even if his shoulder was a little sore afterward).


We hung out with our friends earlier this week and Teddy insisted on dressing one of the little guys there. Look at his face, so cute and sweet. T is such a good little mommy. She is totally in her element when she’s taking care of others.

I’m attending our annual trauma conference (yesterday and today) this week. It has been nice to get away from the unit for a little bit and to learn lots of new stuff. I love spending the day with these work friends!!

That’s all for this week. I’m really looking forward to this weekend and my first Mother’s Day!


A Day at Duke Gardens

I’m going to tell you something I’ve learned about myself since having kids. I’m grouchy after working night shift. Like, really really grouchy. I think Corey pretty much got used to tip-toeing around the sleep-deprived monster (yep, that’s me…) when it was just us. But kids kind of expect you to act the same whether you’re well-rested or spent the previous night taking care of sick people. Which is how I’ve learned that sometimes I’m just incapable of patience and thoughtful understanding post night shift. I’m crabby and nauseous and all around not a very fun person to interact with.

I tell you this because I’ve worked nights for the last two weeks. It’s been rough on all of us. So on Sunday, after my last night shift for the week, when Corey suggested going to Duke Gardens, we all jumped at the chance to get out of the house and enjoy the beautiful weather. For those of you not in Durham, Duke Gardens is over 50 acres of gardens on Duke University’s campus. It is especially lovely in the springtime and such a fun activity on a warm afternoon. We spent the afternoon wandering the grounds of the gardens, pointing out various colors, running in the open spaces and just enjoying time together as a family.

Here are some pictures from our time there if you’d like to see :).

Duke Gardens JJ

Duke Gardens JoJo

You can only catch JJ being serious for a minute or two before she’s back to her happy, smiley, silly self.

Duke Gardens Teddy and Daddy

This one is totally a daddy’s girl.

Duke Gardens Feet

Enjoying the sunshine while the girls ran around one of the big fields.

Duke Gardens Tedddy and Statue

Teddy stood and stared at this statue of a little girl for such a long time, it was cracking me up. The girls were also scandalized by her, um…lack of clothing on her backside ;).

Duke Gardens Teddy Face

Up close and personal, the way she likes to be, haha.

What do you do to rest and recover from an exhausting week? I also had lots of iced coffee on Sunday, which I think helped me perk up quite a bit ;). Coffee and my family…two of my favorite things in the whole world.