6 Months


How in the world has 6 months gone by since we welcomed our miracle girl into our world? I want to say it seems like yesterday that I was still pregnant and in some ways it does but in more ways Eden has been the perfect completion of our little family that it seems like she’s always been here.

I didn’t expect to love every stage with her because with Ezekiel I loved every stage more than the one before and I thought maybe because of that experience I wouldn’t love the stages as much since I would always be looking forward to the next.  I’m happy to say I’m still absolutely loving every stage – newborn to now has been amazing.  Watching a little person develop and grow and being an integral part of that process is such a privilege! I know far too many people that don’t get to experience that for many reasons and so I try daily to be very present in the process and be grateful for even the hard days.  As always happens in my life I’m finding that even the difficult days don’t seem so difficult until I’m looking at them in the past.  The newborn to three months didn’t seem as daunting at the time as they seem now looking back.  The lack of schedule, the learning of behaviours, cries, likes and dislikes.  The juggling the busyness of keeping two humans alive – all seems so daunting now looking back on it but really in the moment I didn’t mind it.  Then the 3-6 months of finally getting into some sort of rhythm coupled with my need to be home resting and becoming comfortable with my own struggles (read about that here) again seems so daunting now on the other side of it but the process didn’t seem so bad.  In fact it was invigorating to realize we were getting into a rhythm and schedule finally and my Type A personality rejoiced in what soon would become a bit of predictability.

Yes being a mother of two is not as easy as being a mother of one (to all my twin momma’s out there – you are absolute rockstars!!!) but it is just as rewarding and life giving as being a mother of one.  The stages, the discoveries, the developments are all just as worthy of celebration and my desire to celebrate them has been just as strong as when I was experiencing them with my first (to my surprise).  No there aren’t as many pictures – mainly because I want to experience it all without the hindrance of taking a million pictures.  You could label that as a “second child problem” but I’m labeling it as a “more present mother” problem, which isn’t a problem at all.

Eden is our little sunshine girl.  She is pure joy bottled into one little human.  Honestly, I don’t think I’ve ever met such a happy baby.  She smiles with her entire body, laughs with the funniest little snorts and loves so fiercely that she can’t control how tightly she grabs you for a hug.  Yes, she is INTENSE in all of her joy and that joy overflows into all that know her.  I know that she will be a girl and woman that uplifts those around her, who loves beyond her limits and brings life to all who know her.  She has already been that to our family and we are so so so lucky to call her our little miracle girl.

It’s a GIRL!

Well, we made it! We actually truly made it to our scheduled C-section date of March 17, 2017! I’ll save the full birth story for another day but I wanted to do an announcement post for all you out there that follow along on our crazy journey.

Eden Bonandje (bon-an-jay)
March 17, 2017 @ 0938
7lb 8oz
20 inches

My entire life I’ve always been quite vocal that I would love to be a boy mom and wouldn’t mind if I never had a girl.  Regardless I was never curious enough or cared enough to find out the genders of my babies because in the end what really mattered to me was that I had a baby.  Early on in this pregnancy I had a strong feeling that I was carrying a girl, but by the second trimester I was back to the “who knows” mentality.  Still I often found myself referring to the baby as a girl in my mind.  I think there might have only been one person who guessed that the baby was a boy and the rest – even complete strangers – were convinced baby was a girl.  Ezekiel was beyond adamant that he was going to have a baby sister and you could not even try to entertain the idea that it just MIGHT be a boy.  My husband  really really really wanted a daughter and thought that since my pregnancy was so riddled with excitement that it had to be a girl because boys just don’t demand that kind of attention :).  I just continued on in the mindset that either way I would be happy.

When they pulled her out and announced excitedly that she was a GIRL the joy and pure happiness that flowed through me took me by surprise.  A girl, a daughter, my last baby is my baby girl.  I still tear up thinking about it and probably will for years to come.  I didn’t know how deeply my soul needed this girl.  She is pure perfection and we are completely smitten.  I find myself dreaming of raising her, of the values I want her to grow up with.  The fears I had about raising a girl were swept away when I looked at her and replaced with the joy I’m feeling at the privilege I have of being able to raise a strong, confident, capable and wonderful woman.

I’m so happy to have been blessed with something I had no idea I needed so badly.





Days Like This

Hey Friends!

I’ve been posting less often the last week and a half.  I’ve really just been laying low, relaxing and focusing on enjoying my last month.  It has been B.L.I.S.S.

Today however, is off to a ROUGH start.

Patience are wearing thin.

Buttons are being pushed.

As I type this Ezekiel is screaming in his crib, protesting sleep, after 1 hour of screaming and yelling and throwing fits before nap time.  He’s even refusing to nurse in an attempt to not sleep.

If I know one thing it’s this: he.is.persistent.

If I know another thing it’s this: I.am.stubborn.

We’ll see who wins this battle.

I actually woke up this morning early to do some yoga, shower and enjoy a cup of coffee before Ezekiel woke up.  I thought “this is brilliant, we are going to have such a great day.”

Don’t you hate when your expectations are thwarted, and worst of all it’s completely out of your control.

It’s mornings like this when I really need to stop, take a breath (or two or three or a thousand), bring myself back to a place where I can calmly deal with a screaming child while not inwardly losing my mind.

It’s days like this when I really need time to pray, read and reflect to keep my energy up and enjoy the moments when Ezekiel isn’t screaming in my face.

It’s days like this that I really need to practice gratitude.

Screaming or not, this miracle boy is everything and more that I ever dreamed of, and in every moment I will be grateful for his presence.

What are your challenges lately? How do you overcome them?

Cloth Diapers

I always knew I wanted to do cloth diapers for our babies.  Something about it going against the grain I suppose, I wanted to do things a bit differently than the majority.  I LOVE cloth diapering and have never had an ounce of regret.  When I was pregnant I began to research a bit about how to start, how to wash, which diapers are best etc.  In the end my greatest resource was going to a local boutique that specializes in cloth diapers and asking questions, they were super friendly and incredibly knowledgeable.

I thought I’d go through our diaper routine and add little tid bits here and there so you can get a glimpse into the world of cloth diapering.

Diaper Station

This is our changing station.  I suppose one downside to cloth diapers is that you are stuck having to change your babe in a specific place.  For me this wasn’t a con because I love the routine, and definitely love the organization factor.

Diaper Drawer

All things diapers and baby care live in the top drawer.  Liners to the left, flannel inserts to catch the poop in the middle, right in front of those are reusable wipes, the basket holds tylenol, gripe water, syringes, thermometer etc. etc.  Then in front to the right are the covers, and extra hand sanitizer.  You can use flushable inserts for after your baby starts solids, or if you are formula feeding and it’s pretty simple to just throw the liner in the toilet and flush!  We chose to make our own flannel inserts because it was free! My mom gave us two large old flannel sheets, we just cut them to size.  If there’s no poop in the diaper it gets thrown in the bucket with everything else, washed and reused.  If there’s poop we use a plastic grocery bag (kept in a bag hanging on the right side of the table), tie it tightly and throw it in a small bin right behind the black bin. I empty that once a week and have never had an issue with smell.  When he goes to a day home we’ll buy flushable liners to send with him, but for now this works and has no cost associated with it.

We also chose to use reusable wipes, again because it’s far more affordable, and because there are no chemicals or irritants so it’s better for babies skin.  I splurged on a Prince Lionheart Wipes Warmer and really love it, I’m glad I spent the $50, especially in the newborn phase when Ezekiel hated being cold.

We chose Bummis brand for really no other reason than they were the most affordable.  It had been recommended several times to try out a few brands, but honestly we didn’t have a budget to buy anymore than we absolutely needed and it really worked for us.  We use the Super Brite line and love them (although I think that line is being discontinued).  We haven’t spent more than $300 on diapers, and accessories thus far, and probably have no more than $100 left to spend on bigger sizes and these will be used for all our kids!

Diaper Bin Small Wet BagWe bought one large wet bag to keep at home, and one small one to keep in the diaper bag.  We haven’t purchased anymore and they have held up fantastic! That black bin is from Ikea and the large bag fits in it like a dream! It was a match made in heaven and a total fluke that I even found it! With the lid closed there is zero smell in his room which was my biggest fear going into this.

Used LinerThe great thing about these particular diapers compared to the all-in-ones is that I can reuse the covers over and over.  Generally I use 2 covers per day and rotate them.  When one is used I just hang it over the side of the table to dry the elastics and the inside and use it for the next diaper change.  When I’m done using one and want to wash it I just throw it in the bin.  Some people prefer to wash them by hand to preserve the velcro but ours have held up fine so far. The washing of the diapers has never seemed like an inconvenience for me.  I have enough diapers to last about 2-3 days, I usually wash every second day in the morning.  It’s part of my routine to grab the wet bag on my way downstairs for breakfast.

Soap I buy the laundry soap from the same boutique that we bought the diapers from.  It has to be natural and phosphate free to preserve the absorbency of the liners.  This is the second bag of soap I’ve bought since Ezekiel was born and it’s still over half full, you don’t need to use much at all.

WasherFor the actual washing of the diapers I first do a rinse cycle with cold water then do a normal cycle with hot water and the laundry detergent.  I’ve never hung mine to dry, always just used the dryer and have been fine with that.

I’ve been using the infant size since Ezekiel grew to big for the newborn size, I should have sized up about 7 lbs ago but just haven’t got around to it.  Ezekiel is a large baby (22.5lbs at 9 months) and is quite chubby around his legs and definitely has a ghetto booty! He does get a bit of a plumbers crack with this size right now, and we have to change him every 3 hours or he leaks, which I’m totally ok with.  It is a sign that the diaper is too small when it’s leaking from the front, I figured this out when Ezekiel grew out of the newborn size.  We have one larger sized cover that we bought accidentally thinking it was infant sized, we use it for overnight and just use two inserts and it works like a dream!

I think that pretty much covers it.  I can’t praise cloth diapers enough and would recommend everyone do them! I’ll be happy to answer any questions that you have, just leave a comment and I’ll get back to you.


What’s Up

I read quite a few blogs and there’s a few that do a bit of a round up weekly about what’s going on in their day to day lives (Elise Cripe, Ali Edwards, A Beautiful Mess to name a few) .  Those are my favorite posts, so I’m doing my own version.

Here’s what’s up:

Fresh AirWe’re taking lots of walks to distract us from short naps and new teeth.

 Starbucks 2 Starbucks 1Starbucks 3

I’m also drinking lots of coffee to get me through.

Back to Work Meal Planning

I’m starting to organize freezer meals for when I return to work.

Portuguese Salad

We’re eating lots of Portuguese cuisine and for the last little while it’s usually prepared by my husband.

Birthday Bouquet 1 Birthday Bouquet 3 Birthday Bouquet 2 Birthday Orchid

I’m enjoying new plants and fresh flowers given to me as gifts.

Birthday Deliveries Birthday Greetings

Celebrating my birthday, but more importantly celebrating that I have fabulous friends.

Ezekiel Canvas

I’m already crushing this years goals and finishing projects.

Walking and Learning Crawling Baby

Ezekiel is running in his walker, learning animal noises, crawling under the coffee table and getting into everything.

It’s been a busy week and I’m so thankful for each moment.