{Pregnancy & Cognizance}

What memory Chipmunk didn't steal, Sissy is determined to claim for herself.

What memory Chipmunk didn’t steal, Sissy is determined to claim for herself.

My brain has been increasingly scattered lately. Scattered to the point of immense frustration. This second pregnancy is especially hard on my cognitive presence. There are moments when I feel I should not be left alone – like the time I flooded our entire coffee bar in more water than I would like to admit. Or yesterday when I scheduled my hospital tour over Chipmunk’s swimming lessons while I was staring at it in my planner. Better yet, the time the garage door opener compartment in my car broke. I hit it several times with no luck. Panicked (yes, panicked), I ran through my options. The keys to the front door weren’t on me. Husband was home so I dialed his cell, hopeful he would open the garage door for me. His phone rang…and rang…and rang. All the while, Chipmunk was in the backseat impatiently yelling, “Up! Up! UP!” As if I could not process his demand, a fair assumption, wild arm movements accompanied his orders. “I can’t!” I pleaded back. “It’s broken. I can’t open the door. It won’t go up. I can’t!” Because arguing with a two-year-old always goes well.

Then it hit me like that proverbial ton of bricks: I could indeed open the garage door. Mortified, I disconnected the call just as it proceeded to voicemail, opened the remote compartment, and pushed the button with my bare hands. Apparently folks, the way I opened garage doors for a decade before this car was too much for my shrinking brain to handle.

Chipmunk ceased his incessant cries as I shifted the car into drive and parked in the garage. Husband greeted us as we walked in the house, his silenced phone in his hand and a questioning look on his face. Why had we called? he inquired. “Lie!” the embarrassed sector of my psyche screamed. “Lie, lie, lie! The two-year-old can’t speak well enough to rat you out. LIE.”

But you guys. I can’t lie. I can’t lie when I am not pregnant. In fact, at this point in my life, I am brutally honest. My brain, the one that had just farted all over the driveway (quaint, no?) could not even begin to shape a story – let alone a conceivable one. So I told Husband the truth. And instead of laughing, he slowly shook his head and left the kitchen. I’m not sure which reaction is more insulting, but it is important to note that I rendered my husband speechless.

Sissy, sweet girl, you certainly are tough on me. I hope you’re storing up that stolen intelligence for one heck of a future.



{24 Weeks}

How far along: 24 weeks

Maternity clothes: I haven’t quite retired the pre-maternity jeans, but everything else in my closet is marked “maternity.”

Stretch marks: Nope.

Sleep: I’m not sleeping well and cannot explain why (outside of the whole “there’s a baby in my uterus” thing). I’m exhausted and have no trouble getting comfortable. This baby is even allowing me to continue sleeping on my tummy. This morning I woke up at 4:51 am – nine minutes before the alarm could sound. Yuck.

Best moment of this week: Chipmunk bringing me flowers!

Miss anything: Sleep. Energy. Having the time to nest the way I’m craving to do so.

Movement: All the time. We’ve been able to see her move on the outside for a few weeks now. All the movement is my favorite part of pregnancy.

Food cravings: Sweets, sweets, and more sweets. Vanilla cupcakes with frosting, anyone?

Anything making you queasy or sick: Nope. No sickness.

Have you started to show yet: Yeppers.

Gender: Still a girl :)

Labor signs: Nope.

Belly button in or out: The belly button is in.

Wedding rings on or off: I’m still wearing my wedding rings. With Chipmunk I think I had to switch them out at this point. I’m grateful that isn’t the case this time.

Happy or moody most of the time: Moody. It’s just been one of those weeks and I am emotional about everything. Who cries because the dishes had the audacity to get dirty again? This girl.

Looking forward to: Finishing the paint jobs around here. I’m so over it all. It’s time for Husband to take over the work.

{His Mama’s Heart}


 Throwback to June 2013.

 He curls into my side, Mama George cushioning his head. Without prodding he turns the page, sending a wrinkle across an excavator’s scoop. Somehow it does not bother me tonight. There is no inward cringe or tamped down cry to “be careful!” This sleepy boy – my sleepy boy – unknowingly has me in the palm of his hand.

It started with me coming home to an empty house. Every room was blissfully quiet and as I climbed the staircase to the second floor nary a step dared to creak. This. This is what a tired, aching mama needed after a Monday at the office. While the boys grocery shopped for supper, I curled up in bed to rest.


Then the garage door sounded, another door swung open, and Chipmunk scurried up the stairs. In the hurry and excitement he did not see me waiting at the landing. But then he did see me and the grin lighting up his face made my heart stop. How do I bottle this sweet toddler adoration?

Ever so proud, he ecstatically pointed to the flowers in his trailing Daddy’s hand. Beautiful pink flowers. Ones Chipmunk insisted they buy for me. He would not leave the store without a bundle, resolute in his specificity. He wanted the pricey ones, that mama’s boy. As they went down the row, looking at bouquet after bouquet, Chipmunk shook his head and sounded an emphatic “no” for each one. Then the pink ones came and my darling two-year-old son knew they were the ones. And he was right.

Of course, how could any flower be wrong when given of the simplest and purest intentions? No other bouquet will ever compare to this one. Never.

He buttered me up, that smart boy. After two bites of salad I let him have a cupcake. What is my parenting coming to? Then the three of us curled up for snuggles and a movie, followed by pajamas; teeth brushing; and story time. A story time where our normally rambunctious boy curls quietly into my side and listens. His eyes droop. A yawn escapes. He softly mumbles words with me and haphazardly turns pages.

Quiet. Soothing. Wonderful.

In these moments he is still my baby. It’s an affliction he will never quite outgrow. For he has, in his tiny toddler hands, my heart. His mama’s heart. Forever and always.




{23 Weeks}

How far along: 23 weeks

Maternity clothes: My regular jeans are getting a bit snug around the waist, but they aren’t done yet. I have finally ordered a pair of maternity skinny jeans, though. My favorite maternity pants? Leggings. Ooooooh, the comfort!

Stretch marks: No new ones yet.

Sleep: I’m sleeping hard at night but would love a morning to sleep in past 5:00 am (work) or 7:00 am (weekends). I’m programmed to wake up to the sound of Chipmunk and once I’m awake, it’s almost impossible to go back to sleep. Maybe one of these days I can convince Husband to let me sleep?

Best moment of this week: The end of the work day today because this was my Friday!

Miss anything: Being able to climb. There are so many things that need to be done around this house and require climbing. I’m tired of waiting on them to get done and am starting to be tempted to just do it myself.

Movement: All the time. Love it!

Food cravings: No cravings this week.

Anything making you queasy or sick: Nope. I’m feeling pretty good right now.

Have you started to show yet: Definitely. I am rocking a nice bump.

Gender: A baby girl!

Labor signs: Nada.

Belly button in or out: In.

Wedding rings on or off: On with room to spare. They are getting tighter, though!

Happy or moody most of the time: I have been emotional this week about people and things beyond my control that are affecting my son.

Looking forward to: Getting stuff done around the house this weekend.

{The Big Reveal}

Remember when I posted this on Instagram and promptly did not tell you if we are having a boy or girl, even though Chipmunk clearly knew?


Chipmunk knows_domesticbella

Yeah, that was mean of me. Sorry about that. Forgive me? Especially since we are now ready to stop teasing (Ahem. You know I did. Herehere, and here). Well, Chipmunk is ready to tell you.




So without further ado. Drum roll, please…




All those pink rose petals can only mean one thing, lovelies. Our second little munchkin is a GIRL!




To say we are excited is an understatement. We absolutely would have been excited about a boy, too. A little brother as Chipmunk’s partner in crime would be fun – and, let’s face it, cheaper. A part of me was very much hoping for another boy. But getting to experience being a mama to both a boy and a girl is its own fantastic blessing. Additionally, as the only girl in a household of five (Husband, Chipmunk, and two male dogs), I’m ready for some pink. You better believe this little girl already has some clothes and accessories in her closet. As soon as my 20 week appointment was done, we ate supper and headed to the outlets for a little pink-and-frills shopping.


At an unexpected 15 week ultrasound we were told the baby was likely a girl. (Quick interruption for a PSA: while pregnant don’t come into direct contact with a copper wire that has an electric current running through it. Just don’t do it. I also suggest not doing that on your birthday. It’s a bit of a celebratory mood killer. Husband came home from work at 8:30 PM, ready to wish me a happy birthday, only to find me crying in a huge bubble bath – away from the offending electricity. Anyway…) Of course, 15 weeks is super early and I was not confident that some extra little parts wouldn’t make an appearance. Baby Girl also kept her legs crossed throughout the ultrasound, so the little peeks she afforded the sonographer were not enough for anyone to feel confident. We held off on sharing until it could be confirmed at 20 weeks. To be honest, having that little piece of information between just Husband and I was special. Sacred even. We have become increasingly private since Chipmunk’s birth as we now fully recognize how much it can strengthen our relationship. Lessened outside noise and interference makes such a difference. Quietly dreaming and planning together over the last few months has been a gift we both treasure.


Chipmunk is still the sweetest to his “sissy.” He hugs and kisses my baby bump. One evening when we were watching a movie he rested his little hand on my tummy and left it there. Oh, be still my heart! He is practicing to be a great big brother.


These photos were a blast to take. The lighting was perfection, which made the 5:00 am wake up on a Saturday well worth it. We aren’t in a hurry to do another 7:00 am photo shoot, but I wouldn’t say no if our wonderful photographer (her Facebook page is here) suggested it again!


Baby Girl, we prayed so long and hard for you. We can hardly wait to meet you.


She will fill our lives with sunshine…and our hearts with love.



1 2 3 36