I finally dug deep and got myself out of my crafting rut and made a few special gifts for Christmas. I hadn’t really used my crafting room at all since we moved in September, but about a week before Christmas I finally got the itch to make some last minute gifts and they turned out really cute!
My kids got crafty over Christmas break too and had a “door decorating contest” (something their classes did at school) and they had so much fun with it. Lily’s was a Frozen theme, of course, and Ayden’s was Star Wars because he’s absolutely obsessed with Star Wars now after seeing the new movie. They are so crafty and creative and came up with the ideas all on their own. I didn’t even know what they were doing until they showed me the finished product.
Harper was absolutely spoiled this Christmas! It was the first time where she could actually open presents herself, and once we showed her how to rip the wrapping paper there was no stopping her. She’s been enjoying her new car and is already texting while driving.
We finally got some snow after a pretty mild fall. My kids are in heaven! My back hasn’t been though, after all of the shoveling we’ve been doing. Because we live so close to the school, we have a lot of kids walking in front of our house in the mornings and afternoons, so I always try to have the sidewalks cleared for them. Thankfully, one of my neighbors walked over with his snow blower and cleared the sidewalk for us after a significant snowstorm. I need to get one for myself- it took him 90 seconds while it took me about 45 minutes with a shovel.
2015 came to an end in a really sad way for me with the passing of my grandmother, whom we had just visited back in June. The news was shocking and so sad, and I only mentioned it once or twice when it happened. I just haven’t been ready to talk about it and it’s still so personal that I don’t want to say too much. My grandma was truly the matriarch of our family. She had 6 children and my extended family is huge and spread out through southern California. I had to hop on a plane the day after Christmas to be with the rest of my family in California for her memorial. I flew with my parents and left my husband and children behind- it was just too expensive for us all to go, but I needed to be there. While we were all grieving and heartbroken, the trip itself was good and I’m so glad that I was able to attend. I got to reconnect with some family members I hadn’t seen in probably a decade, as well as some dear family friends who hadn’t seen me since I was a teenager. Because I was there by myself, I wasn’t performing my regular mom duties and I was able to be fully immersed in this family time and help support everyone as we all came together to remember my beautiful grandmother. I still can’t believe she’s really gone and that I’ll never hear her sweet voice or kiss her soft cheek again. I’m so thankful for our visit in June. Before that, it had been 7 years since I’d been back to see her, and I would have never forgiven myself if I hadn’t gone to see her before she died. I will cherish those memories, the conversations we had, and the photos we took forever. She was laid to rest an absolutely gorgeous military cemetery overlooking the ocean in San Diego. Rest in peace, Grandma Walker.
In light of that sadness, I have some happier news. Unbeknownst to me at the time, while I was away for the funeral, a tiny miracle was occurring. I’m pregnant! Yes, baby #4 will be arriving sometime at the end of summer 2016. There’s been a lot of baby talk this last year and we knew we wanted to try for another baby in 2016, but I didn’t think it would happen so quickly. We’ve got a 3 1/2 year age gap between my first two, and then an almost 7-year gap between #2 & #3, so I did not expect to get pregnant when Harper was only 17 months old. She will be just a little over 2 years old when this baby comes along, and I’m a little nervous to have a toddler and a newborn at the same time. I’ve never had two in diapers! I know I can do this though…WE can do this. My husband is a great help and we are over the moon excited to be expanding our family again. Children are such a blessing! You can watch my reveal to the kids here! It’s so adorably cute and heart-warming to see their genuine reactions.