NC State Fair

My one and only State Fair experience prior to the NC State Fair was back when I was 11 years old in Frederick, MD. Maybe because I have this faint yet fond memory of a family Fair outing that I really wanted to take Emma to one, and make it a family tradition. When people told me NC State Fair is like none other, they weren’t kidding. It was bigger than I imagined and nothing like the one I went to with my family when I was younger. Although traffic getting to the Fair was horrendous and there were too many people for my liking, we had fun soaking in the experience. Of course, Emma had the most fun. In fact, she had so much fun, we went twice and the first time, she stayed out until 11 PM! We had lots of junk food, everything fried to be exact (that’s what State Fairs are for, right?) and Emma rode her first pony ride!! She had mixed emotions in the beginning. She wasn’t sure if she was scared or ecstatic, but since the pony ride, that’s all she would ever talk about! We also met up with her friend from school, and they rode some rides together. I was a bit nervous at first, probably more so than she was, but she ended up loving it and wanted to ride every ride at the Fair.

We will definitely make it an annual tradition for our family, but will be avoiding the weekend for sure. Overall, it was a great experience with tons of fun!

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“I don’t know if I should cry or laugh!”

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Trick or Treat!

There is no doubt Halloween is an exciting holiday in our household. Steve and I had our fun share of dressing up and attending Halloween parties when we weren’t parents. Now that we have our daughter, the focus has been on her and I am totally okay with that!

This year was Emma’s first time Trick or Treating which made it even more fun! She had a preview this past Sunday when we went to Lafayette Village for their Halloween event. We borrowed a costume from her friend and dressed up as a ladybug (with Heart of Te Fiti necklace she refused to take off). Although we didn’t stay too long due to gloomy/cold weather, she scored some candy. Before you knew it, she had ripped off the wrapper of a lollipop and was going to town!

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As for Emma’s main costume this year, we decided to go with Moana. Surprise, surprise! 😛 Steve and I also decided to dress up as her sidekicks, Kakamora and Hei Hei. We didn’t go all out and did DIY costumes for us using a glue gun and a lot of felt. I’m glad we decided to go with Moana costume for Emma, because literally, that’s all she wants to wear when she wakes up in the morning. Morgan also took our annual neighborhood Halloween pictures of the kiddos. Morgan and I were joking about how much more difficult it may be this year compared to last year as all of our kids are now toddlers. And they did not disappoint in being full blown toddlers. Thank God I brought some cookies to bribe them. 😉 But I mean, how cute are these kiddos?! So glad we are continuing our tradition!

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Trick or Treating on Halloween was super fun! Emma went door to door saying “Trick or Treat” and was so excited to score more candy! I wasn’t sure how many houses we would do since it was her first time, but she ended up going to quite a few! Hope everyone had a great Halloween! Now, don’t be stealing your kids’ Halloween candies like us! 😉

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To Emma (Letter #2)

Our dearest Emma,

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Your second birthday has come and gone, and Mama is more emotional than when your first birthday came along. As wonderful as your first year was, a big chunk of that year was in survival mode. Your second year though, was soaking up every single moment of your growth because it literally went by too fast. With a blink of an eye, you somehow transformed into an independent young girl. And as each day passed, it was as if our baby was disappearing.

As I desperately try to hold onto every second of your “needing Mama moments”, I also know I have to let you fly. One of the biggest milestones this year was fostering your independence by enrolling you in school. Though the initial transition was tough (probably tougher on Mama than you), we are so proud of how well you adjusted and how much you love learning new things. I hope you never lose your curiosity and passion for exploring new things in life. And I’ll let you in on a little secret. The best part of my day is when you run into my arms with a huge grin, shouting “MAMA!” when I come pick you up at school. I sincerely hope that never changes. And even when you are 18 years old, you still find comfort in my arms.

As always, I am so grateful for being your Mama. Papa and I thank you for another wonderful year of being a healthy and happy baby. We love you so much sweet girl, and we cannot wait to learn more things about you as your personality shines through each day.

Love,

Mama

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It’s a Girl!

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No, we are not pregnant. Haha. Now that’s out of the way, we attended our dear friends’ gender reveal party for their second baby! You probably saw tons of adorable pictures of Emma and her newest friend, Camden on my social media. Well, Camden is going to be a big brother and Emma will have another girlfriend in the neighborhood! All my girlfriends and I are super excited for the baby girl to join our gang this August. Can’t wait to meet the little nugget! 🙂

Ever since moving to our neighborhood, we made some really good friends. Without having family nearby, I’m so grateful for these girlfriends who are like family to us. And with all the babies close in age, there’s always lots of room for fun family time! After all, it takes a village to raise children! 🙂

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First Snow of 2017

This is our second winter in North Carolina, and I LOVE our mild winters especially after Chicago. However, I was hoping for some snow so Emma could experience it for the very first time. Weather gods must have granted my wish, because we got lots of fluffy snow back in January, well a lot for NC anyway. Needlessly to say, everything shut down and Steve and I had a field day trying to find a snowsuit for Emma. All the stores were sold out of their snow garments if they carried them at all in the first place. Steve ended up driving 30 minutes to buy it off of some lady just so our daughter can “play” the next day. But it was definitely worth it because we got about 2 or so inches of snow and our yard was covered in white.

Emma was so confused when she first saw snow. At first she didn’t know what to do and stood frozen. She then realized she could walk on it and started exploring but definitely did not like that it was cold when she fell in the snow. Her play time in the snow was short-lived but I’m glad she was able to experience it!

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Love is in the air <3

Hello world! It’s been a long time since I last blogged. I’m going to do a winter recap post later to give an update on what’s been happening in our family, but for now… Hello, February!! February always seems a bit warmer due to Valentine’s day and all the love in the air. 😉 Steve and I are usually low key on Valentine’s day, but this year, I wanted to get him something special for being such a hardworking husband and dad! Thanks to my girlfriend in our neighborhood, we planned a golf weekend for our husbands! The weather could not have been better for the weekend, it was in the 70’s! Can you believe it? On Saturday, we went out for a family breakfast and spent some time at a golf range. The boys needed to practice their swing, and the babies had fun running around. Then on Sunday, we surprised them with a golf outing. Tee time was set, and we gathered two other dads together for their 18-hole golf outing! I think they definitely needed a guys day out! While the guys were at golfing, we had a little Valentine’s day photo session of the babies. Although it was a bit difficult to get all the mobile babies/toddlers together for a good picture, it turned out adorably cute! Thanks, Morgan for being our photographer and props manager. 🙂

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Blowing a kiss. Mwah!

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Too excited about blowing a kiss, Em? 😀

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Valentine’s day was a regular week day for us, but with a sweet surprise! Steve had red roses delivered to the house which I was not expecting at all, and he came home with a gift! Steve is usually a practical gift giver, but he bought me a scarf – picked it out all on his own and everything, no hints at all! I was super touched because he usually asks me what I want, but this time around, it was all him! Bravo! We spent rest of the evening low key with dinner at home and calling it a night early. Hope you all had a great Valentine’s day!

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Happy Holidays!

One of my absolute favorite things to do is sending out Christmas cards to our family and friends. In the past, we did DIY family photos for our Christmas cards, but nowadays, it’s getting a bit difficult to take DIY pictures with a mobile toddler. Thankfully for this year, we did a photo swap with my friend and photographer, Morgan. We went to Boyce Farms, a Christmas tree farm to take our holiday photos, and it could not have gone any better! Emma was all smiles running around, super animated, playing with the jingle bells Morgan brought which made for the cutest pictures! Steve was also able to snag some cute shots of our babies together! I cannot get enough of these two little ladies, so adorable!

Em had a little accident when we got to the farm, so I had to change her pants at the last minute, but I tried to coordinate our outfits for the pictures – Steve and me wearing vests, and Emma and me matching with grey. Next year, I’ll spend a bit more time on our outfits so all three of us can match!

We also got our Christmas tree while we were there. We are still continuing with our family tradition of getting a real Christmas tree and a new ornament each year. This year, we got our ornament from the Christkindlmarket in Chicago.

We had a lot of fun taking these photos and picking out our Christmas tree. Big shout out to Morgan for making the photo session easy and even more fun!! We had a great time shooting your adorable family as well!

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Em isn’t a fan of PDA 😉

I hope everyone has wonderful holidays full of love!

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