July 30, 2016

Wren Turns THREE!

Wren Winter: 3 Years Old Wren Winter: 3 Years Old Wren Winter: 3 Years Old Wren Winter: 3 Years Old

Wren's third birthday was a great day! Both Jon and I were able to be off for the day, and we kicked things off with balloons + presents + donuts first thing in the morning. She got a scooter, a doctor kit, and a wooden school bus toy with little people to ride in the bus.

After breakfast, we headed to the zoo to feed the giraffes and the birds and tell all the animals it was Wren's birthday!

She had a blast all day, and we had a blast celebrating her and making her feel special. She is such an amazing little girls, and we are so lucky to watch her grow!

Elle Evergreen: 1 year old

Elle, you are ONE! Below are a few photos and highlights from your twelfth month AND your first birthday party:

Elle Evergreen: 12 months

Your twelfth month was a big one! You learned to stand on your own without assistance! We also took the changing table out of your room and got you a big girl shelf for all of your big girl toys.

You continued to play with Wren and thought she was pretty great. You sisters were so sweet sometimes! You loved playing outside as the weather got a little warmer, and you didn't officially start walking until March 24, 2016 - but you loved walking around the house using the ride-on toys.

You hit a really great stage at twelve months, and you were such a happy baby most of the time. Since then, you've had bad times here and there, but no more constantly fussy baby - yay!

Your first birthday was a pretty simple celebration, but you loved it! You started the day off by standing up BY YOURSELF for the first time - a great way to kick off being one year old!

Elle's 1st Birthday

After a morning of playing, you took a good, long nap and woke up ready to open presents and eat cake! We got you a little red piano, a walking toy and some other little things, and you had a blast pulling the paper off. For your cake, we made a strawberry cake with pink cream cheese icing and pink sprinkles.

Your cake topper was ordered from Etsy and custom made for you. I loved it SO much - it was beautiful! Wren was playing with it before we put your cake together and she broke part of it off. I was so upset, but Daddy was able to super glue it back together - thank goodness! I saved it in your memory box because I loved it so much.

Elle's 1st Birthday

Elle's 1st Birthday

We didn't really have to prompt you to try your cake. You had your fingers and hands in it right away. I love this last photo so much. It really sums up how much you loved that cake - ha!

Daddy, me and Wren had strawberry cake cupcakes while you enjoyed your big cake. We sang you happy birthday and took a million photos of you getting all messy. Then we stuck you in the bathtub to wash it all off.

We love you so much and had so much fun watching you grow during your first year! Looking forward to the years ahead and hoping all your days are happy ones!

Elle Evergreen: 10 & 11 months old

Elly belly! Your tenth and eleventh months were so fun and festive with the holidays in full swing. Here are some highlights:

Elle Evergreen: 10 months

At ten months old, you were standing up all the time (but still holding onto things for support). You learned how to shake your head "no." You also started

When you got upset and started to cry, you started screaming these loud screams, like a Pterodactyl! We got you a sleep sack around this time because it started to get cold at night, and you loved it! Even today (at almost 18 months old), you can't sleep unless you're zipped up in your sleep sack.

You continued to make fart noises with your mouth by sticking your tongue out and blowing. You loved to do it when you were riding in your car seat, which meant many times you were completely covered in spit by the time we got to where we were going.

Elle Evergreen: 11 months

At eleven months, you continued to LOVE solid food. In fact, when Wren was eating in her chair and you weren't, you would crawl over to Wren's chair, pull yourself up on it and try to steal her food off of her tray! You loved eggs (scrambled, fried or boiled), bananas, crackers, black beans, cheese, apple sauce, yogurt and oatmeal. You didn't love meat, but would sometimes eat it if it was the only option, and you didn't love a variety of fruits - not even strawberries, even though we kept (and keep) trying to get you to like them.

You loved bath time at eleven months, and you were really crazy in the bath! I couldn't take my eyes off of you. You would try to crawl, stand, and even swim! It was super nerve wracking making sure you didn't slip and go under!

You celebrated your first Christmas at eleven months, and you loved it. Your favorite toy was probably the ride-on cow toy. Your legs were too short to ride on it at first, but you used it as a walker to walk all over the house, which you loved!

Then we rang in 2016 with a bunch of silly family pictures, which you seemed a little confused about. What can I say, we love a good photo booth!

You loved walking anywhere with assistance at this stage. You even loved pushing Wren in her wagon.

We had a crazy snow storm during your eleventh month, and we were stuck inside the house for days! Daddy had to shovel a mountain of snow off our driveway, and we took you out to see if you liked it - NOPE! ;)

You were just so cute and so pretty at this age, like a little baby doll! It's so much fun watching you grow!

Elle Evergreen: 8 & 9 months old

Little Elle Belle - You continued to get sweeter with every month! Here are some highlights from your eighth and ninth months:

Elle Evergreen: 8 months

You learned how to move around during your eighth month! It wasn't exactly crawling, more like scooting - and you really only knew how to go backwards - ha! That means you sometimes got stuck (like in the photo above when you're stuck under the TV stand).

We took you to your first play when you were eight months old - Newsies! You didn't love it and didn't love having to be quiet, so it was actually pretty stressful. We sat on the very back row and brought lots of toys, but we ended up taking turns walking in the lobby with you until you fell asleep on Daddy's shoulder.

The fall in Virginia was pretty rainy and chilly, so we did a lot of playing inside during your eighth month. You didn't seem to mind, and it made for plenty of practice time to perfect your crawling skills.

Your temperament continued to shift in and out of fussy phases during this time. Sometimes you would be super pleasant and easy going for a while, and then you'd start cutting another tooth or something else would happen that would throw you back into fussy baby mode.

Elle Evergreen: 9 months

During your ninth month, you started legit crawling - on all fours! It was crazy to see you go from scooting to crawling, and man, were you fast! You loved being able to cruise around the house and get to where you wanted to be all by yourself.

You also started pulling up to stand during your ninth month. I would be sitting on the couch, and next thing I knew, your little head would POP UP as you pulled yourself up to see what I was doing.

You started doing this mouth breathing thing, almost like you were pretending to be a puppy dog. And you gave us BIG cheesy grins all the time, squinting your little eyes. Your hair was so dark at nine months - it slowly started to get lighter after this. And look at that belly (above)! You loved food - eggs (prepared any way) and bananas were your favorite. Also, look at your tiny feet! You had the smallest feet ever and it was really hard to find shoes to fit you to keep your feet warm outside!

You took your first plane ride during your ninth month - to Texas for Thanksgiving. It was a terrible flight (bad weather + a bumpy failed landing attempt), but you handled it like a champ and slept most of the way. Everyone in Texas was so excited to see you and hang out with you, but you were very nervous because you didn't know them and preferred to be with me most of the time, which was a-ok with me!

Elle Evergreen: 6 & 7 months old

Oh, Elle - You keep me so busy, I'm having to play major catch up with your monthly posts! Here are some highlights from your sixth and seventh months:

Elle Evergreen: 6 months

You sixth month was pretty momentous because... your crazy hair finally laid down! We weren't sure when this was going to happen - or if it ever was! But somehow, during your sixth month, we just noticed that it was not standing straight up on the back of your head anymore. Haha! You also got your first teeth, the two bottom ones in the front. Which was perfect timing because we started you on solid foods during your sixth month. We started out giving you baby cereal/oatmeal and bananas - and today (at almost 18 months old) bananas are still one of your favorite foods!

We continued our summer of fun during your sixth month, and you went to the Chesterfield County Fair for the first time. (It's the best fair ever, so we were excited to take you.) We also did some adventuring around Richmond and the Outer Banks. You continued to love the warm sunny days and were happiest when we were outside in the sun + playing in the water.

During your fifth month, we transitioned you into your crib, and you continued to sleep so good in it. In the mornings, you would wake up and cry for someone to come get you, and Wren would climb into your crib to play with you until we got there, which you loved.

You were so squishy at this age, with soooo many leg rolls - I just wanted to chew on them! ;) You loved being held all the time and were happiest when someone was walking around with you on their hip.

Elle Evergreen: 7 months

At seven months, you started sitting up on your own, which is always such a fun stage (but we always put a pillow behind you because sometimes you would fall over with no warning). You started making sounds with your mouth - fart noises + snorting while scrunching up your face.

Football season started during your seventh month, and Daddy made sure you had a Dallas Cowboys shirt to wear for the games. In fact, you had two! With football season came fall and Halloween, too! We visited the pumpkin patch and dressed you up like an Elle-ephant for Halloween, You were THE CUTEST! You didn't even mind your costume and loved walking around the neighborhood on Daddy's hip while Wren trick-or-treated.

We took a family trip to Shenandoah National park during your seventh month, and you went on your first hike! (Strapped to me, of course.) We hiked a bunch that weekend - to waterfalls and lots of pretty spots - and you were so heavy. It was a major workout to go up and down all the mountains with you!

You can really see your torticollis in this seven month photo (above). We continued with our physical therapy to stretch your neck out during this time.

Seven months has always been one of my favorite baby stages, and it was with you, too! You loved playing with us and interacting and learning to use your little body - so fun to watch!

February 12, 2016

Happy Birthday, Elle!

Elle's Birthday
All footage captured by Jon. Music by Ed Sheeran (the song Elle was named after and born to!). Full birth story here

Happy first birthday, sweet Elle! Over the past year, you have added an element of craziness to our family that we didn't know was possible. ;) But we wouldn't have it any other way! We love you to pieces, and we're having a blast watching you grow! xoxo