Currently Browsing: Vivian

the party





Linc and Viv’s first birthday party went by so fast, I have trouble remembering if it actually happened!  May and June were crazy busy months for us with them turning 1 and the launch of Love Well.  We had been telling ourselves for months that their party was going to be super simple and not over the top, but the closer it got the more excited we became!  More ideas just kept popping into our heads, and while I still don’t think it was extravagant, it did end up taking quite a few naptimes and late late nights!  They only turn one once, though, and we really enjoyed everything we did to try and make their party special.







Anyway, because of how crazy the preceding weeks were and the fact that we left for vacation 3 days after it, I truly feel like it was all kind of a blur.  I remember this one, distinct moment when I walked their cakes over to them and everyone was singing – I stepped outside of myself and looked in.  I saw it all taking place – the two burning candles, our small living room overflowing with people who love our babies, the twins acting so nonchalant and unimpressed with the whole thing – and I burned the moment into my memory before the singing stopped and the chaos resumed.

It really was a great afternoon.  Family and friends loved on Linc and Viv.  We ate baked potatoes with all the toppings, corn on the cob and chips and dip.  We drank lemonade.  We opened presents and oohed and ahhed at the thoughtful gifts that were brought.









And we sang. For two little babies who blew our minds when they entered this world one year ago.  For the joy they have brought, the battles they’ve overcome, and how they’ve made our world a place we never even imagined it could be.






























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you are 1 year old, sweet baby girl!


The day we brought you home life really started.  You have been such a good and easy baby.  It has brought your daddy and I so much joy to see you learn and grow over the course of this year.  We have so many great memories with you – so many days of cuddling you, playing with you, talking to you, feeding you, taking you on walks.  We’ve gone on trips to Dallas, Colorado, California, and shorter trips to Tulsa, Duncan, Harrah.  You saw the ocean for your first time and felt the sand in your toes on you first birthday last week.  And you absolutely loved it!  You weren’t too big a fan of the cold water, and you got a little mad when I let it rush up onto your legs.  Your happy place was sitting in the sand, enjoying the sun and breeze and sand toys around you.  You kept looking up at us from underneath the brim of your sun hat and just smiling this huge smile.   Seeing you experience new things has been one of the highlights of our year, and we can’t wait to see you experience so much more in the coming year. 

- from mama’s letter to you


at your birthday party, 4 days before your actual birthday









What you weigh – 15 lbs. 1 ounce  This month at your appointment with Dr. Signer, you were on the chart for the first time, coming in at 1%.  We’re so proud of you:)

What you eat – You are still nursing 4 times a day now, for about 5 minutes each time.    You’ve started waking up later and later, so now you usually eat around 8:30, 12:30, 4:30-5 and 7:30.  You are getting better and better at eating.  Anytime I put food up to your mouth you lean back and look down your nose at it to figure out exactly what it is I’m trying to put in before you will open.  Sometimes you’ll take it, sometimes you won’t.  But if it goes in your mouth, you eat it.  You’ve never spit anything out (knock on wood).  You are definitely eating a wider variety and are doing much better with solids.  Also, you’re feeding yourself much better now!  You love to practice with puffs.  Watching you pick up pieces and feed yourself is one of the cutest things ever.   Any kind of fruit is definitely at the top of your favorite foods list.  You also like beans, goat cheese and lots of vegetables. While you don’t get them super often, you also love puffs and baby mum mum crackers.  At your 1 year appointment, Dr. Sigler also asked us to start giving you milk with your meals.  We’ve started with Almond milk, and so far you really like it!  You’ve totally mastered the straw sippy cup, and you love to hold it yourself and drink out of it.  Your cup is one of your favorite things.


beach pictures are from your actual birthday

Laguna Beach, California



 How you sleep – you have been sleeping even longer than usual as of late.  You go to bed around 7:30 and don’t wake up until about 8 or 8:30.  Your daddy and I are so lucky that you are such a great sleeper!  You also take two naps, one from about 10:30 until 12 and another from about 2:30 to 4.  While in the past, you were a better sleeper than your brother, now it’s the opposite!  A couple of times a week we have to put you in the swing for your nap because you just can’t fall asleep, and also a couple of times a week, we have to go in and sneak you out of the nursery mid-nap and move you to the swing.  You are such a mess:)



What you wear – You are quickly growing out of size 3-6 and wearing more 6 month clothes along with a few 6-12 month.  Although, your birthday dress is a size 0-3.  Somethings just run big I think, and you are pretty tinyJ  We love you that way.  You are still perfectly in a size 1 shoe.

Diaper –  Bum Genius Freetime with two to three rows of snaps left open in the middle.




Favorite activities – drinking out of your cup, reading books, swinging, playing peek-a-boo, taking baths, being tickled, playing peek-a-boo

Least favorite activities: having your face cleaned, you aren’t super crazy about having your diaper changed.


Big moments in your twelth month of life –  More teeth!  Started pulling up, first trip to the beach, first trip to California, lowered your crip, started pulling up






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some random thoughts

These little babies are keeping me on my toes and busy more than ever before.  I love/hate that they are changing so much and doing so many new things, and so much of it I’m afraid I won’t remember even though I feel right now like I could never forget it.


There are so many joys to having two babies, and we’re experiencing them more every day as they get older.  When I hear them wake up from their nap, I always run to grab the monitor so I can sit for a few minutes and watch them.  Sitting up in their cribs, close enough to touch each other’s fingers through the slats, they laugh and laugh and laugh.  Then banter back and forth in their own little language before breaking out into giggles again.  Oh to know what stories they’re telling each other.

Linc is all boy all the time.  Climbing on everything with a fierce determination.  And so much energy!  For awhile now he has been stealing toys from his sister…if she has it, he wants it.  Sometimes she’ll just look at him and then turn away, busying herself with the next thing.  Oh, but sometimes.  Bubba you better look out.  Sometimes she is just not having it, which results either in her lunging after it or simply letting out her piercing cry.  The girl knows what she wants.  That’s all.


A couple of days ago, I put them in their highchairs while I was fixing dinner.  I want them to have a chance to practice picking up foods and feeding themselves, so I scattered some puffs on each of their trays.  In typical Lincoln fashion, he immediately grabs a fistful and starts playing with them, crushing them in his hand, wiping them all over his tray.  But thoughtful Viv, after several minutes, began to pick up one at a time and move it to her mouth.  With it in her fist, she was having a hard time transferring it to her mouth.  I could tell she knew what she was supposed to do with it because she would hold her first up to her mouth and then pull it away and make a chewing motion with her mouth, the puff still in her fist.  Silly girl.  After a little while of that, she finally figured out how to get it into her mouth, and then there was no holding her back.


Little sis has also started playing peek-a-boo.  Usually only when she’s in her highchair, she’ll cover her eyes with her hands, and then pull them away and wait for me to say “boo!” before breaking out into laughter.  Cutest. thing. ever.


One of the greatest joys of my life is watching them discover new things.  To sit back and just watch them play, seeing their minds working things out as they explore.  Definitely one of my favorite parts of parenthood.


There are days where I feel so exhausted, chasing after the two of them.  They truly do wear me out.  But I love taking care of them so much.  They’re my little people, and it just feels like taking care of them is exactly what I was designed to do.  Most days it doesn’t feel hard, even when I’m tired.  It just feels right.

I’m still nursing them both 4 times a day.  I always assumed I’d nurse them for a year, but as we inch closer and closer to their 1st birthday, it just seems crazy to think about no longer nursing them.  I can’t imagine it.  It’s not that parts of stopping don’t seem alluring, like being able to wear a normal bra or not always having to think about whether I can nurse in an outfit before I decide to buy or wear it.  But I’m just not ready, and I don’t think they are either.  So onward we go.   For how long nobody knows.



Praise the Lord for these two sweet little inquisitive people and all that they bring to our life.


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happy 11, vivi girl


You are such a perfect fitting piece of your daddy and I’s life.  We love to go places with you and Linc in tow all the time.  One, because it’s so fun to do new things with you.  And two, we want to show you off to the whole world.  A lady we passed at the Arts Festival this past weekend put it perfectly when she said “you’re so lucky!”  Except I know that we aren’t really lucky…we’re blessed.  Because God knew exactly what He was doing when He created you.  He knew that every little part of you would be just the perfect complement to our family.  He knew that you crinkly eyes and your toothy smile would complete us.  We love you so so much.

-from mama’s letter to you




What you weigh – 14 lbs. 11 ounces

What you eat – You only nurse 4 times a day now, for five minutes each time, although I still pump once late at night so you can have milk in your oatmeal in the morning.  You’re also eating 3 meals a day.  Your eating is pretty much the same as last month – as in you aren’t too into it.  You could really take food or leave most meals.  You have gotten really good at eating pieces of diced fruit – you like pears, apples and especially peaches.  Another new favorite this month is cauliflower – I pureed it with a little bit of butter, and you eat it up!  Other than that, everything is pretty much hit or miss.

How you sleep – We’ve moved your bedtime up a little bit, so most of the time you go to sleep around 7:15…if we’re on time that is!  You sleep until 7 or 7:30, and then you usually lay in your crib and talk and play until around 8.  We are so blessed to have such a great sleeper!  You also take two daytime naps, usually from about 10am until 11 or 11:30 and then again from about 2 until 3 or 3:30.  Occassionally you’ll sleep a shorter or longer time.  You still like to be swaddled with both arms out, and now you have a little square lovey that I made you, and you love to hold it or put it over your face while you sleep.  It’s so sweet:)

What you wear – You are still wearing 3-6 month clothes now, although some dresses are still 0-3, which is crazy.  You are just barely able to wear a size one shoe…they’re a little big, but we make them work so you’ll have room to grow.  We just bought your first pair of sandals for summer, and they are precious on your tiny feet!

Diaper –  Bum Genius Freetime with two rows of snaps left open in the middle.

Favorite activities – laughing at mama and daddy when we make faces at you, reading books, swinging, playing peek-a-boo, playing with my earrings (and anyone else who is wearing any), taking baths, being tickled

Least favorite activities: having your face cleaned

Big moments in your eleventh month of life –  More teeth!  You now have four on top and three on the bottom!  Started crawling faster and more – you’re all over the place now!  Clapped for the first time, started mimicking – smacking your lips together when we do








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two weeks later…


     Two weeks ago today, I celebrated my very first Mother’s Day.  Even though I spent most of the day sick in bed, I still savored every moment from nursing Linc and Viv separately in the morning, spending just a little longer holding each of them in bed…to rocking them to sleep before laying them in their cribs that night.

I spent so many long days and months praying and hoping to become a mom.  I remember feeling the deepest desire to have a baby to love. Yet even that longing didn’t prepare me for how it would feel to love my babies.  The love I feel is oftentimes overwhelming because I just don’t feel like I have the capacity to be what they deserve in a mama.  It’s like I can’t possibly show them how much love my heart has for them. I’m slowly learning that I can spend every day trying to convey to them through my words and actions what a treasure they are…but I also have to give them up to the Lord every single day because I truly don’t have the capacity to be what they need on my own.


I try at times to control everything in life in an effort to protect them.  I feel so vulnerable having them out in the world, at risk of something bad happening to them.  It’s terrifying, and if I allow myself to dwell on it, it can be crippling to me.  For several weeks now, I have felt pushed in different ways to leave Linc and Viv in the nursery at church, but I’ve avoided it every time because I just don’t trust anyone.  I feel this crazy intense need to be with them every moment so that I can protect them from any harm that might come their way.  But I know that I have to begin to let them go in some ways.  Baby steps.  So I left them Sunday morning.   With tears filling my eyes I walked away and prayed myself through the service to stay strong.  And when I went back I found Vivian crying, tears running down her face as she lay in the nursery bed.  And it tore my heart to pieces.  I felt like I had deserted her with strangers.  And to think that she might have wondered if I was coming back was almost more than I could handle.


I had written this post in my head two Saturdays ago, knowing just what I would say about how on Mother’s Day I took a necessary step of every mother – letting her babies go just a little bit – and how it worked out just fine and how I celebrated later.  Instead I feel like I’ve been set back about ten steps.  Honestly, I’m dreading taking them to the nursery again.  But I know I will.  And I know it will be fine.  I guess this is still all part of this journey of motherhood.  Learning to love my babies with open hands, holding them up to the Father and trusting that He’s protecting them and that He has a distinct plan for their lives.


I also celebrated my own mother from afar last week.  We were with Jon’s mom for the weekend, but I did get to meet up with mom and spend a few minutes with her.  Celebrating her came from a new perspective for me this year.  I’ve always appreciated and thanked her for everything she gave up for me and all the ways she took care of me as a little girl and as I’ve grown.  But this year I, for the first time, understood the complexity and depth of love she has had for me.  The kind of love that keeps you up at night, hoping and praying your babies are safe and okay.  The kind of love that consumes you because you literally feel like your heart is walking around outside your body.  And I’m so grateful to have been loved with that kind of love.  What a special and unique thing being a mother is.  It’s incomparable to anything else, and I feel so blessed to have that kind of love from my own mother and to be able to pour out that kind of love to my sweet babies.  It’s the best thing in the world.


Throughout the day my thoughts also kept drifiting to all the women out there waiting to be a mother.  I remember like it was yesterday the emptiness that comes from not being able to fill the desire for a baby.  That pain is something one cannot forget.  Now that I’m on the other side of it, it only brings more intensity to the gratefulness I feel everyday to be able to touch my babies faces and kiss their heads.  I think about it often…in the hard times when I’m exhausted and I’ve changed a million diapers and I just want to lay down and go to sleep…it jolts me back to reality and showers me with patience, understanding and a full heart.  I wouldn’t wish infertility on anyone.  But in the end I can honestly say the journey we had to walk to have our Linc and Viv has only made life that much sweeter now that we’re on the other side.  So for those women I pray for peace, comfort and hope.


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