Name that baby girl!

Friday, May 29, 2015

I mentioned in yesterday's 34 week post that we are having such a hard time naming this baby girl! I started to write about it but then I realized it really should just get its own post because it started to get a little lengthy. And then! I got an email I've been waiting for from Kate of the Sancta Nomina blog. I came across her blog when she did a name consultation for one of my very favorite bloggers, Grace from Camp Patton. Grace is due with surprise gender #5 just a few days before my baby girl is due and Kate did such a fun name consultation for her! Given that we were/are in the biggest baby name rut I decided to shoot Kate an email to see if she could do a name consultation for us! She is the sweetest ever and sent me a lengthy email with so many fun name suggestions! I'll post parts of her email later in this post! But first...

When I'm asked if we have a name and I say we don't at least half the people think I'm just keeping it a secret (we sort of did that with both Jack & Phillip) but this time I swear to you we really do not have a name! When and if we do settle on a name I probably won't be sharing it publicly (social-media wise) just because I do love that element of surprise but then I will tell you that we have picked a name! I'm open to ideas, throw them out! We have a two-name list right now but I'm not sold on either of them. Jack is convinced we are using one of the names on that list and it's Tom's favorite too and so it has stayed on the list but I am not sold at all. I used to love it and then T & I found out we didn't agree on spelling and ever since then I've sort of just fallen out of love with the name. As for the second name on our list Tom only sort of likes it and I'm not totally sold either so it's kind of just hanging out on the list but it could easily get the boot any day now.

Here's a little breakdown of names we've considered so you can get a vibe for what we are going for. Loved Charlotte for several weeks and then when I found out it was climbing the charts really fast (had no idea!) I started to feel like maybe not. It was borderline being booted from the list when the princess was named Charlotte and then it was a no-brainer. Baby Girl will not be Charlotte. Forget that I thought it was climbing the charts fast before. It's about to be number 1 in no time. Not my cup of tea. But along the lines of Charlotte, I love classic, romantic names and tend to love lots of French-origin names! Lay 'em on me.

In other names...Kylie was considered for a short time. I still think it's adorable but we decided maybe just not right. I love Kenlie, Tom does not. We both like Chelsie/Chelsy/Chelsi but a) can't agree on spelling and b) again...just doesn't seem right.

And then there was Linden. She was on the list for awhile but was sort of just a guest HA. I love the idea of something so original but then I think I'm not quite brave enough for it. I don't think I would like having people always say to me "wait, what is it?" when they ask her name. Generally, Tom is not a fan of anything too original so I was pretty surprised that he agreed to Linden being on the list in the first place. It has since taken a boot but send some originals my way and we'll see how it goes.

We have one more name that we both like (and I LOVE) but it was (very) recently used by a relative and we just don't feel right "stealing" it even though we'd be using a different spelling. So we're keeping it on the list for the next girl, if there is one!

Okay, curious as to what names Kate suggested to us!? Her blog is really all about Catholic baby naming and we aren't Catholic but she was so sweet to suggest names to us just the same! I have to omit pieces of her email because while I told her the names that are currently on our short list I don't want to give them away on social media or the blog! Here's what Kate said:

I was chuckling to myself as I re-read your email this weekend, the fact that you love Charlotte but “dislike that it is climbing the charts so fast and becoming a very popular name” – and that was pre-Princess! Charlotte/Charley is lovely and sweet and spunky and vintage and modern all in one, it’s no wonder everyone loves it.

I think I came up with some good ideas for you though – I always shoot for three, but I came up with six suggestions and couldn’t whittle them down any further!

(1) C/Katherine nicknamed Kate
Kate was listed as a sister name for Jack, and Catherine for Philip (in the baby book Baby Name Wizard - we have the same naming book and LOVE it!!). I really like this idea for you – Jack, Philip, and Kate and Jack, Philip, and Katherine sound like a good, cohesive set of siblings.

**My notes: Jack's cousin is already named Kate so while I think the name is just darling, it's out!

(2) Caroline nicked Callie
Caroline and Charlotte are both feminine versions of Charles, so Caroline would be a nod to your love of Charlotte. But even on its own, it’s an awesome name, and the nickname Callie is what sealed it for me as a suggestion for you. Jack, Philip, and Caroline or Jack, Philip, and Callie are awesome imo.

**My notes: Love, love, love Caroline (and also Madeline, which I feel is similar!) but Tom is a no-go on both of those. I love her idea of Callie as a nickname for adorable is that!? Wish T was on board with this one! But...nixed.

(3) Eleanor nicked Nora or Nell or Ella
So Eleanor was a sister suggestion for **a name we like**; Nora and Nell were both sister suggestions for **another name on the list**; and Ella was a sister suggestion for Jack. Those kind of connections blow me away! Since all those nicknames are traditional for Eleanor, you’d have your pick. Eleanor has that same literary/vintage/Brit feel as Charlotte without the popularity.

**My notes: Eleanor is a name I've suggested more than once with Elle or Ella as a nickname, I'm not the biggest fan of Nora or Nell but I do love Elle/Ella! But, again...T is a no-go on Eleanor and also a no-go on Elle or Ella even though I really tried to push for either one of those for quite a long time! I really especially love Ella!

(note: this is actually an outtake from our "photo shoot" - ha! - but I included it anyway because I feel like it totally represents exactly how I feel every time I pick up the name book. I look at it for awhile and then feel like I'm getting nowhere ha!

(4) Theresa/Teresa/Therese (or Elizabeth!) nicked Tess
Tess is really the main suggestion here, it’s one of my favorite names and so sweet as a sister to your boys imo. If you just had Jack, I’d say Tess, hands down. But Philip brings a little more formality to your family, so Tess as a nickname for something made more sense to me for you. The Theresa names are the more obvious and traditional choice, and lots of good patron saints to choose from there, and Theresa was actually listed as a sister name for Philip. But I’ve also seen Tess as a nickname for Elizabeth, and that seems like an even better fit imo. Jack, Philip, and Elizabeth; Jack, Philip, and Tess. Or Jack, Philip, and Theresa. All great names.

**My notes: None of these ones are doing it for me. I wouldn't say I dislike them but they're just not quite my taste.

(5) Veronica or Genevieve or Evangeline or Evelyn
These were inspired by your love of **insert a name we love!**. If you want to save **said name!** for a future daughter, then I’d suggest not using these, just because V is a distinctive letter and these are all V-heavy names. But if you want a name similar to **insert name!....sorry guys, I'm sure this is annoying!** to use this time, one of these might do. Veronica was actually listed as similar to Philip and it has loads of nickname options: Ronnie, Nica/Nicki, Via, V.

I often see Genevieve and Evangeline grouped together, as they’re so similar in sound and length. Both can take the nicknames Evie or Vivi, which are just the sweetest, or Genevieve could be Genny and I've seen Lina for Evangeline.

Evelyn is a little bit of an outlier here – it’s listed as similar to **our loved name!**, and can have the great nick Evie, but Genevieve/Evangeline have a frillier, more sumptuous feel to them, while Evelyn is a little more grounded and pared down, a little more like Charlotte or Eleanor to me.

My notes: Veronica & Evangeline are no-go's for me. While Genevieve is cute I feel like it's just a little...formal? I'm not sure, it's just not working for me. But Evelyn? Love! I've suggested it to T more than once but, yet again, he's a no-no-go.  Also, like Kate said, we still possibly want to save our loved name for the next baby girl so we may not want to use any of these as they are V-heavy like our loved name ;)

(6) Mia, Molly, Lily, Grace
Jack resulted in a lot of short-and-sweet names, names that could be nicknames or could stand on their own. Some just seemed so spot-on to me that I thought I’d list them here. If you prefer longer names, consider that Mia can be a nick for Maria (a la Mia Farrow), and Lily for Elizabeth.

Names that did well for you but that I decided not to suggest to you were Josephine nicked Josie and Georgia/Georgiana nicked Georgie. Maybe you like them? They’re beautiful, both of them. But I was kind of feeling that, since you have two boys already, maybe boyish isn’t what you’d like to do for a girl? But now, even as I’m typing this, I’m remembering that you love Charley for Charlotte. So maybe you would like Josephine/Josie or Georgia or Georgiana/Georgie? I love them all.

**My notes: Grace is a definite favorite of mine and is reserved on our lists as a possible middle name but T is not a fan of it for a first name. As for Mia & Molly - cute, but not my favorite. And I have about one thousand friends with little girls named Lily so that is out for me. As for Josephine and Georgia, T is a definite no-go on both of those so I don't even bother to have an opinion haha!

Overall, I'd say Kate suggested some fabulous names! I feel like she was able to distinguish my style pretty well and the biggest dilemma we seem to be having is that T likes so few names! Unfortunately, it doesn't sound like we'll be using any of Kate's suggestions (although I'm definitely going to reassess this list when it comes time to pick a middle name...not even thinking about that yet haha!) but she did get the wheels rolling and, as of yesterday (after I wrote the beginning of this post!) we actually have a new name on the list that is a top, top candidate and I'm actually really excited about it! It just barely made the list so we need to mull it over for a few days/weeks but it's definitely a contender!

We are still very open to suggestions so please, please send them our way! I would love to hear all of your suggestions and I'm curious to see if anyone suggests names on our list! Help us name that baby girl! - we have less than 5 weeks until my due date!


34 Weeks!

Thursday, May 28, 2015

Does 34 weeks seem like a huge milestone to anyone else? It's definitely one of my favorite milestones of pregnancy. 6 weeks to delivery (or due date ha!) seems so manageable and so much less than 7 weeks for some reason? Plus by 34 weeks baby is doing really great development-wise so I don't worry much anymore about pre-term labor. Not that I've ever come close to pre-term labor but still you worry. Or at least I do.

Anyway. We're at 34+ weeks and are counting down.

A little update, shall we?

Total weight gain: 29 pounds AHHH. I gained 28 total with Phillip so considering the fact that I have 6 weeks to go I'm slightly freaking out. However, I gained 43 with Jack so I'm still pretty confident I won't get near that. Thinking a pound a week until delivery which will put me at 35 pounds. More than I was hoping but still in the normal range.

Maternity clothes: Am I the only person who does NOT love maternity jeans? I swear I read about all these pregnant women who wear maternity jeans for the first time and then are like "where have maternity jeans been my whole life!? I want to wear these forever!" and I'm over here like "GAHH get me back in normal jeans that STAY ON."

Seriously. Half the maternity jeans I own have the worst belly bands that are constantly coming down which means I'm always adjusting my band and having to pull my pants up. SO annoying. I do actually love anything from Motherhood Maternity or Pea in the Pod that has the Secret Fit Belly because they actually stay on but still, overall, I miss regular jeans that zip and button. I always love the day I can fit back into my beloved American Eagle jeans.

Now living in maternity dresses? I can get on board with that real fast. I'm basically living in the tee-shirt dresses from Target and I'm definitely considering wearing them long after I deliver as I'm pretty sure I can easily nurse in them since they are pretty stretchy and easy to pull down from the top. My only complaint with this dress is that it doesn't come in more colors! I need like 15 options since I wear them basically every day.

Sleep: Hit & miss. Getting up 2-4 times a night to use the restroom but mostly my sleep is interrupted by lower back pain (mostly I just always need to pop it!) and sometimes restless leg syndrome although that's usually worst as I'm falling asleep and doesn't bother me once I'm actually out.

Best moment of this week: Rearranging furniture in baby's nursery with the help of a friend to make room for a new rocker (eek!!). Loving the new arrangement every time I walk in. Plus it's starting to turn very pink & girly (poor Phillip who still lives in there haha!) and it's all so exciting!

Miss anything: We already talked about my American Eagle jeans so...what else can we add to the list? Bending over easily. Being able to breathe deeply. Sleep. Having room on my lap for my littles. Being able to hug my husband without a giant bump in the way...even though we love what's inside that huge bump haha!

Movement: starting to notice her movement slow down some as she doesn't have as much room. I mean, she still moves a lot but I can tell she doesn't have as much space in there.

Exercise: I've been in a pretty good routine lately and I'm happy to report that I've been consistent and feeling great! Six days a week I spend 20 minutes on the exercise bike (or until I burn 200 calories, whichever comes second) and then I complete my daily assignment for all the challenges I'm currently doing on iPhone apps: squats, tricep dips, and calf raises. I really want to start a pull-up challenge too but considering I can't do even one pull-up I'm thinking that's not going to happen anytime soon haha!

Food cravings: Ice, ice and more ICE. I always want ice! The worst part of this craving is that our ice machine doesn't work so I can't get crushed ice straight from the freezer! I really need to go buy some bagged crushed ice to store so I can stop hand crushing my ice with a hammer. I'm so serious, I do that. Also still craving root beer floats on and off.

Labor signs: None. Frequent, frequent Braxton Hicks (like I swear I get them 100x more than I did with either of the boys, front AND back!) but nothing that feels like real labor. Pretty sure I'll make it clear to my due date before there are any labor signs.

Wedding rings on or off: Still on and hoping I can keep it that way even through the (coming any day now!) hot summer weeks.

Looking forward to: Baby shower on Saturday! So excited for all things pink and girly!

Other updates...

-Still not even close to picking a name for baby. I just wrote out a whole long essay about this and then thought...maybe it should be its own post. So look for that in the next few days!

-Really trying to have some self-control when it comes to buying clothes for baby girl but dang can I shop! I have a serious addiction and probably need an intervention. Except I don't want one. on?

-I'm in serious nesting mode. Feeling like there is so much to be done before baby girl comes and I'm easily overwhelmed by it all. I've been working on just tackling one thing at a time but it seems like I just keep adding to the list. Why do I feel like everything needs to be deep cleaned?! AHH.

-My exhausted pregnant self is SO AMAZINGLY HAPPY because after many, many long hours and what has seemed like endless travel, T is finally home with no scheduled travel for several months (hallelujah!) and normal work hours for the few weeks before baby arrives (with the exception of one end-of-quarter a few days before she is due ha!). It has been so exhausting lately playing single mom (many praises to any of you who do it full-time!) while trying to keep up with two active toddlers while being in my second & third trimesters. So holy oh my goodness are we ever excited to have Daddy back! Plus we kind of like him so it's nice to see his face every once in awhile ;)

Thanks for sticking it through to the end. I definitely rambled more than I planned...


City Works Day

Wednesday, May 27, 2015

So a nearby city has this fun free event called City Works Day where they bring tons of city vehicles into the library parking lot and little kids can walk around and explore, sit in the vehicles (honk the horns!), talk to the workers (police officers, fire fighters, construction truck drivers, etc) plus there are tons of booths with little goodies like pencils, coloring books, frisbees, garbage truck toys!, candy and more! To say this was little kid heaven is an understatement. My boys (especially Jack) were on Cloud 9. Plus we went with our BFFs Emily, Emma & Lizzy which makes everything even more fun!

Onto the inevitable picture overload.

^I don't know, don't ask.

^Phillip was not so sure about the garbage truck haha!

^Free freshly popped popcorn!? Happy littles!

^It's a dang good thing this kitty was not yet adoptable because if she was I'm pretty sure I might have walked away with her. I mean do you see her!? Cutest little kitten and plus she's orange which is Jack's favorite color so basically she was perfect. Plus I'm pregnant and I want to take anything home that is tiny and cute.

 ^let's not make riding in the back of police cars a regular thing, okay little ones? i know it seems pretty cool buuuuut...ya know.

Thanks, city of Folsom, for a fun day! We'll be back next year!


A day at Fairytale Town with our BFFs.

Tuesday, May 26, 2015

I've blogged before about Fairytale Town but in case you don't remember, it's basically a glorified park...which you pay to get into. Luckily, it's pretty inexpensive especially when you score a BOGO coupon! And little kids seriously love it here so it's worth the few bucks every so often. I used to come here as a kid myself all the time so it's so fun seeing my own littles experiencing it now!

Anyway we've been lucky lately to get to spend lots of time with our BFFs. Emily is basically the best (insert so many tears that she is moving this summer!!) and Jack & Emma are pretty much inseparable. Add in that Phillip has developed a major baby crush on Lizzy lately (he is so excited whenever he sees her - he'll stare at her forever in her car seat ha! - and is basically completely enthralled with the whole idea of a baby...let's hope that sticks when baby sister comes around!) and basically our families are just a perfect match.

Little Emma just turned 3 (THREE?!...that means my baby is turning three soon ahhh!) and for her birthday we took a day trip to Fairytale Town. Enter so many pictures.

^Jack told me (and anyone else he saw) the rest of the day "the sheeps were sleeping. they didn't wake up." yep. kind of boring sheep.

I didn't get any pictures of the slides but let's just talk for a second about how much Phillip loved the slides and could have gone one million times down each one and how Scaredy Jack didn't dare go down any of the big (or semi-big) slides. He was happy to watch Emma & Phillip go down and cheer for them haha! It's crazy how different the two boys are!

^how adorable is it that emma asked to hold jack's hand? basically i was dying over this cuteness.

^these two kill me. Jack is going to be a bucket of tears come summer when little Emma moves away! First best friends are irreplaceable.

Up tomorrow: City Works Day with our BFFs.


Mother's Day 2015

Monday, May 25, 2015

Surprise, surprise.
I'm two weeks late.

BUT. We had a good little Mother's Day over here. Church in the morning followed by Skyping my cutest little sister who is serving a mission in Pittsburgh (we only get to talk to her twice a year so it's pretty exciting!), some time spent at Mom Wallace's in the afternoon, then dinner with my parents' and grandma's complete with cheesecake dessert which always makes for a great day.

The best part of the day was just spending time with all my favorite people, especially my three favorite boys.

You are about to be hit with one million pictures of almost exactly the same pose but I just can't narrow it down. All the different expressions perfectly explain my everyday life.

^have to say i'm pretty excited for this baby girl to come and to get a 4-generation (all girls!) photo with my grandma and mama!

^how gorgeous are my grandma's?!

^I realize that I for some reason look like a GIANT compared to my mama but A) my heels and B) let's just blame all that extra flab on pregnancy, k? We'll try this picture again when I'm a little less belly and booty. sure love this lovely mama even if she is making me look bad!

AND let's just talk about how CUTE my little sister is for one second, okay?

^She has officially been out six (almost seven!) months which means she is 1/3 of the way done with her mission! EEK. I miss this girl like CUH-RAZY and cannot wait to see her again in another year!

These little boys keep my life busy and sometimes a little crazy but I love (almost) every moment! Ever since I was a little girl I've dreamed of being a wife and mom and I can honestly say that it's even better than I ever imagined! My days are filled with joy & love and I wouldn't want to spend my life any other way than beside the love of my life raising these littles. It seems as though life couldn't get any sweeter but I know it will when baby girl arrives and then again with each new addition to our little (or almost not so little anymore!) family!

Oh and my boys gifted me a massage PLUS chiropractor gift voucher so I was all smiles about that. Two things my 30+ week pregnant body so needed ha.

Hope all you beautiful girls out there (mama's or not!) had a wonderful Mother's Day! All women are Mother's in one way or another :)


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