extend lashes

A few months ago I shared the plans for the eyelash extension salon one of my good friends and total boss babe, Kristen, just opened!

Out of the three inspiration boards I shared on the first post about it, she liked the Kate Spade look the most:

 And here's how it all came together! It also makes me want to start getting lash extensions again...

They gave the whole interior and exterior of the building a facelift. Isn't it so fun!? Everything turned out beautiful and I'm so happy for her new (and so far thriving!) business!
If you know people near Alma, Michigan- make sure to spread the word!


showering baby bates

My sister is due in less than a month! We're all counting down the days until Baby Bates (whose first and middle names have yet to be decided) shows up- my sister the most, I'm sure. We had a little baby shower for them today at mi casa!
 Since my other nieces and nephews live back in Florida, I'm especially excited to have a nephew living in the same state! 

I'm not gonna lie, I think it was one of my favorite spreads I've ever done. All hail cheese. 

I know a lot of people don't like cheesy baby shower games, so we skipped those (though I totally don't mind them. Sure, pass the diaper filled with a mushy candy bar and lemme smell it while we pretend it's poop...can I eat it?) But we did find a game that was pretty funny- a spoof off of Cards Against Humanity- called Babies Against Parenthood.

Thanks to everyone who came! You are already so loved, Baby Bates! I know Michaela is ready for the next few weeks to fly by, but I for one am NOT! That means it's too close to the end of summer, and I'm not prepared to even go there yet!



You'd never know from how perfect these pictures turned out, that getting out the door to get to the shoot on time was a bit of a nightmare and Jillian almost puked in the car. 
So I'm gonna go ahead and chalk this up to a modern-day miracle.

It's funny to me how many people (and there have been so many) ask me if we're going to "try for a boy next time." People do know that the odds restart with each kid, right? It's always going to be 50/50 no matter how many of them there are. ;-)

But even though our family is 80% girl, I certainly don't feel jipped. 

Having a sister means you always have a best friend- and they each get two. There will be arguments over clothes, shoes, boys, screeching at decibels levels you never thought humanly possible, drama and emotions, with lots of talking about how we feel. But there will also be lots of giggles and secrets shared- that thicker than water kind of love.

Nah, we just don't feel jipped. We feel incredibly, incredibly blessed.

Thanks for the most adorable pictures, Mar Downs!

the story of charlotte

We're a family of FIVE. That is a pretty good size group.
I mean, we bought a minivan (and it's awesome. all hail power sliding doors). 
Charlotte Lynn joined us on Monday, May 29th at 2:58pm, weighing 7lbs 4oz and 20" long.

Her arrival was pretty routine (fortunately!). This was my first scheduled induction, so it was a little odd to go to bed thinking, "we're having this baby TOMORROW!" I did try to get labor going on my own several days before, but to avail. I mean...an hour of High Fitness did nothing people. Nothing. She was pretty content in there!

I could hardly sleep the night before, in the same way that you can't sleep the night before Christmas. We arrived at the hospital at 6:15am and got all settled in. I started Pitocin around 7:30ish. My contractions were mild and I actually couldn't feel a lot of them. A couple hours later I decided to get my epidural (bless) before my doctor wanted to break my water. 

Progress was slow at first- it took 6 hours to go from 3cm to 6cm dilated! Speaking of which...the hospital wall had a nice little visual display of what 1 to 10cm dilation looks like. Thanks for that visual. 10cm sounds so small, but when you see it on a chart and realize what is going to be 10cm...it doesn't seem so small anymore.
But after that things happened crazy fast! I went from 6cm to holding her in less than an hour. We told my sister she could be in the room with us (since she's expecting her first baby in July!), and she barely made it to the hospital on time.

She came out super quiet. A few squeaks and small cries here and there- so the nurses had to rub and pat her quite a bit to finally get a good cry out of her. 

Even though this is our third baby, I'm so amazed every single time when I see an actual living, breathing, tiny little human come OUT of me. That I made. From scratch.
(all the while wondering how in the world they could possibly fit in there).

Jillian and Olivia absolutely loved meeting her and were excited to get to help wash her hair for the first time.

Everyone is asking who she looks like- I think so far she's a pretty decent mix of both of the girls! Her eyes and face remind me a lot of Jillian, and her nose, mouth and chin look a lot like Olivia. I just hope she keeps her dark hair! 

Recovery this time around has been a lot smoother and I'm so grateful! I think it just gets easier the more babies you have, but I'd also like to think all that exercise throughout my pregnancy has helped just a little bit. That first time you realize you can actually bend over without anything getting in your way is just blissful.

I love having a tiny little person to cuddle and gawk over (not so much wake up with several times a night, but I suppose it's a package deal). Suddenly Jillian and Olivia seem so much older in comparison to Charlotte's wrinkly, squishy little body.

Since we've been home, Jillian loves to hold her and will even "baby talk" to her- it's pretty funny to listen to. Olivia likes to tell everyone every time Charlotte sneezes. "Mom! Charlotte bless you'd again!"

 We all love her to bits and our family is feeling pretty complete!