Sleep, Eat, or Shower: Choose One – The First Month with a Newborn

I knew the first few months having a baby would be life-changing. I just didn’t realize how much; aka: you can shower, sleep, or eat, but you only have time for one, choose wisely. Needless to say, we didn’t have the easiest start to our little family, but we’re powering through.

Bennett was born with sever jaundice. He was born early (37 weeks). We (Bennett and I) have different blood types so his slightly underdeveloped liver had an extra difficult time processing my red blood cells. This led to him being “under the lights” for the first few days of his life. We also had to stay in the hospital longer.


The combination of the jaundice treatment (being away from me), a not great terrible nurse who advised me to “wait a long while” before trying to breastfeed for the first time, and his being born early, resulted in nursing challenges. I ended up seeing many lactation specialists, five to be exact. Who, all determined, I was producing hardly any colostrum and then later, I didn’t produce enough milk. Weight tests before and after feedings determined I was only making about half of what Bennett needed. So, all the lactation specialists and pediatricians advised us to supplement with formula. We needed to get the calories in so he could process the red blood cells and get the bilirubin levels down.

The next couple weeks were spent with daily trips to the doctors to get blood work done for his bilirubin tests and weight checks to see if he was gaining. Bad news for both, for a solid week. Bennett ended up losing almost a pound and his levels did not go down like we hoped. Not being able to produce the food my baby needed made me feel like such a failure. Breastfeeding was something I was passionate about. Eventually (after a lot of formula), we got his bilirubin numbers down (at about 2.5 weeks) and then finally at three weeks old, he passed his birth weight.

Despite everything, I haven’t given up on breastfeeding. It’s a long, hard, and tiring road, but I’m trying. I have modified my six month goal, to a one month goal. Then, I’ll continue to set manageable goals to keep my sanity. The feeding plan is as follows:

  • Breastfeed on demand (usually every 1.5 hours but can be up to three hours) this of course includes waking him up throughout the night. I was not prepared for that. At the beginning, he was nursing for 45 minutes to an hour. Around week three, we cut that time to an average of 36 minutes per session.
  • After breastfeeding, supplement with formula if he is still showing hunger cues and doesn’t seem satisfied. He never is satisfied after nursing. The supplementation started at one ounce, but has increased as he is getting older and growing.
  • After breastfeeding, I pump. Pumping started with 30 minutes after every nursing session. Then we cut it to 20 minutes after every daytime nursing. [I was dying with the previous schedule]. Then, after my body still wasn’t improving, the lactation specialists reduced the pumping to 10 minutes. I know they thought I would give up completely if I kept up with the previous schedules.

So, yes, that is a lot. The whole process takes about 1.5 hours. Yep, by the time I finish the feeding, it is time to get going on another feeding. All day, every day.

Feeding baby via syringe
Feeding via the syringe
At almost one month, we started with a bottle

Naming Bennett

Jimmy and I used our September drive to Blacksburg very productively. I was armed with a list of baby names I didn’t hate (literally spent all my free time going through thousands of names) and a baby name book a wonderful coworker gave us. We went through names one-by-one. Deciding we liked some a bit. Favorite compromise was Gregory. However, it didn’t really meet all our requirements.

Ingrid’s Requirements:

  • be unique but not too weird
  • ideally have family significance
  • “flow”

Jimmy’s Requirements:

  • be normal
  • ideally have Christian ties

These requirements did not match up on many names. There were a few we liked and had jotted down. One in particular, Bennett. During the drive, Jimmy was on the phone with his best friend Andy. I got a call from my brother Kurt, so we were on two different phone calls. Kurt asked how the drive was going. I said there was traffic, but we were working on our baby name list. Kurt asked for favorites. I said “well we think we like Gregory and then I really like Bennett, but didn’t you guys want that name?” Kurt and Kate said we should use it. It was still a little grey area for me.

Then, we’re driving back from Church on Sunday in Blacksburg and Jimmy notices a street sign “Bennett St.” He goes, “what about Bennett.” I said “that was my grandfather’s name!” [it was on our list but he forgot]. He goes: “I really like it.” I reply “I really like it too!” Now, Bennett Street is a tiny two block street in Blacksburg, very easy to miss. We literally saw a sign for our son’s name!

bennettst

Then, on the drive back home, we were getting onto 81 and I said “what about middle names.” Jimmy replies: “William. It’s my dad’s middle name.” I smile and say: “It’s my dad’s middle name too!”

And there you have the naming of Bennett William Racine.

Ingrid’s Requirements:

  • ✓ be unique but not too weird – absolutely! When he says “Bennett” people will know what he’s saying but there shouldn’t be 8 other Bennetts in his class.
  • ✓ ideally have family significance – definitely does! Honoring the late MSGT Leland Bennett, my grandfather. William for Jimmy’s dad, my dad, and my brother Kurt.
  • ✓ “flow” – yep, with or without the middle name

Jimmy’s Requirements:

  • ✓ be normal – nickname “Ben” aka completely normal
  • ✓ ideally have Christian ties – there are quite a few saints named William

 

2016 Year in Review

Baby bump, Hokies, and our new car. That sounds about right for 2016

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2016 was clearly all about the baby bump.

Jimmy

Jimmy continued his health and fitness commitment: playing lacrosse at least twice a week, going to the gym almost daily, and using the 5×5 weight lifting program. He went hunting a few times and got one deer. He continued growing the National Harbor branch of his company as the Geotechnical Department Manager.

Ingrid

Honestly, I don’t remember what I did pre-pregnancy. I know I continued pure barre. I chopped my hair off. I’m sure there were lots of brunches and wine nights with my friends. Then, positive pregnancy test and my whole world changed 🙂 Oh, in June I went to Smith Mountain Lake for our annual Girls Wine Weekend trip. Obviously I was drinking all the seltzers and none of the wine, but didn’t matter, I had a blast! I was spoiled at an amazing baby shower in October. I turned 30 in November.

Decided to chop my hair off 💇 my head feels like it's floating 🎈

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We (Ingrid & Jimmy)

January 2016 – we had an amazing time enjoying the Blizzard of 2016 when it snowed for basically a day straight.

Always the first ones out ❄️❄️❄️ #blizzard2016 #7am #snow #hour19 #kaigotstuck

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Snow dog #KaiRacine #blizzard2016 #kaigotstuck

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When your husband braves 2 feet of snow to smoke some pork shoulder 😍 #smoker #blizzard2016 #manly

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February – we went to the boat show in Annapolis.

March – We took a spring break to the Penthouse to use up Jimmy’s “use it or lose it” leave. We also got to go celebrate our wonderful friends’ Keli & Mike’s at their wedding. Congratulations Keli & Mike!

Starting our spring break #beachfishing #jimmyfishes

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Morning mimosas #beachtrip #surfsidesc

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April – April started rougher. A HUGE tree fell on the house my grandmother owned that Kurt and Kate were currently living in. But then, we got to go celebrate another wonderful couple and see their engagement at the spring game in Blacksburg 🙂 Congratulations Meredith & Ryan!

May – We went to the Outer Banks with friends.

June – We found out we’re having a Baby!

We told my family about Baby at the Cottage. We went to Massachusetts to visit Jimmy’s family. We also told Jimmy’s parents, his sister, and his extended family about Baby this trip.

July – We went on our annual beach trip to SC.

August – We told my extended family about Baby at a house warming party Kurt & Kate threw.

September – We found out we’re having a son. We celebrated our 4th wedding anniversary.

We went to Blacksburg for Homecoming weekend.

Homecoming weekend Blacksburg 2016

October – we went apple picking.

Looking to 2017

Obviously 2017 is Baby year. So, we’ll mainly work on becoming first time parents this year. We also want to do the following:

  • Ingrid: lose the baby weight! (I’m already obsessing just because I want to feel and look like me again, and I want to fit in my cute clothes that I miss).
  • Trips: Penthouse, Blacksburg for a game (and bring Baby), Richmond for Meredith & Ryan’s wedding, Atlanta for Petey & Danielle’s wedding, lots of Cottage trips – Baby has his own crib & changing table there
  • Jimmy – wants to continue lacrosse & shooting, possibly join a hunting “lease”

 

32 Weeks

Merry Christmas!

Christmas Baby Bump

This week was a whirlwind of activity. Monday night I hosted the fourth anniversary of our wine club. Sarah, Jayme, and Keli all came over for a fire and a delicious spread of pomegranate goat cheese salad, a red & green fruit tray, bagel bites, cookies, baked brie, and the gooiest fudge ever (fail). We missed you Meredith! This year marks the second of no drinking for me (last year I had just gotten my wisdom teeth out). Hopefully next year I can partake in the wine part of the wine club 🙂 I stayed up until after 10 laughing and having so much fun with these girls – totally worth being tired!
Fourth anniversary wine club

Tuesday was Jimmy’s 32 birthday! He got up bright and early to head to the gym. When he got home, I had breakfast waiting for him. Cheesy eggs, breakfast sausage, an english muffin, and coffee.

Tuesday during work, I had the Falls Church Chamber of Commerce buffet luncheon. I go up, get my food, start walking back to my table, and my meatball rolls off my plate, bounces off my belly, and rolls across the floor. I started crying I was laughing so hard! The director of the chamber watched the whole thing and was dying laughing too.

Tuesday night, we were both exhausted from three parties in three nights, so we got some takeout from Anthony’s Restaurant and chilled on the couch. It was wonderful.

Wednesday our glider came! I could not choose a glider for the life of me. We went into multiple stores to test them out. Obviously I loved the Dutailier reclining model (aka all the money ($500-$700). Jimmy really liked the armchair style ($360). However, I just could not feel ok spending that much money on a chair. Especially one that would likely get spit up on. So, I started looking for a glider that 1) had removable seats/pads (making cleaning easier), 2) was reasonably priced, 3) got good reviews, 4) would fit both me and Jimmy. This led me to the Shermag Glider Rocker Combo with Ottoman ($223). I added it to my Amazon Baby Registry and used my 15% completion discount to purchase the glider (and a bunch of other things we needed) so I ended up paying a little over $200. It glides smoothly and silently, is comfortable, fits Jimmy, has removable cushions. So, met all the requirements. Naturally, I needed to fully assemble the glider the same night I got it.

Shermag glider and ottoman
Ignore the tiny white Styrofoam pieces – didn’t get to vacuum before I snapped the picture

Wednesday night, at 10:36 pm, Kai had a COMPLETE FREAK OUT! He must have heard something in the backyard because he jumped out of bed barking. He then proceeded to bark at the top of the stairs – nope that’s not scary at all when you’re home alone (Jimmy was at lacrosse) and was just sleeping. I decided he probably needed to go out, so I bravely went downstairs and let him loose. He sprinted barking to our woodpile, jumped on top of the woodpile, and barked looking over the neighbor’s fence. This makes me think it was an animal in the backyard and not a scary home invader. I didn’t do any of the things Jimmy has me practice for when there’s a possible home threat. Actually, I didn’t even take out my earplugs to listen for a threat. Fails all around. I figured Kai sounded mean enough. Well, actually, I wasn’t thinking. I was exhausted and achy and super pregnant.

Friday, I got a half day from work in honor of Christmas Eve. So, I installed the Husky All Weather mats and cargo cover in my car.

Saturday morning (Christmas Eve), Jimmy went duck hunting with a friend. Later that day, we went to Jimmy’s parents’ for mass at All Saints in Manassas, enjoy the traditional Christmas Eve pizza dinner, and have a sleep over – Christmas jammies for the win! Christmas morning, we all opened presents and had breakfast. I know Jimmy loved waking up in his childhood home and going downstairs for Christmas morning just like he used to 🙂

Christmas 2016
Christmas Mass 2016

After the Racine Christmas, it was time to hit the road to head to Southern, MD for the Freemyer Christmas. I am thankful every holiday that our families live so close, so we are able to either do combo holidays, or celebrate with both separately and be able to continue with our own family traditions each year.

32 Weeks Pregnant Questionnaire:

How far along? 32 Weeks

How big is baby? 16″ & 3.8 lbs; the size of a jicama (a what?!?!? so again, no fruit this week)

Maternity clothes? Yes.

Sleep: Getting to the uncomfortable stage here. Oh and if I try to straighten and stretch out my legs while sleeping, I get a Charley Horse! I have never had one before; it is painful! I scared Kai terribly by yelling out in pain around 6 am Tuesday morning. Not fun. I’m also still getting up every hour. #LackOfSleepTrainingMama

Best moment this week: 1) Christmas, 2) wine club Christmas night (seeing Sarah!!!!), 3) Jimmy’s birthday

Movement: I’m trying to think the fact that only I can feel him (due to my anterior placenta), is special and a bond between just us, but really it’s annoying and I want my family and friends to share in the baby kick magic.

Food Cravings: spaghetti [met this craving twice on Tuesday – for lunch and dinner #NoShame]

Food Aversions: none

Gender: Baby’s a boy!

Labor Signs: none that I can feel. I inflated my labor ball to start bouncing around on the regular.

Pregnancy Symptoms: I can breathe easier this week. He’s definitely lower than he was. Hopefully this means he’s getting head down and ready. Although we still have some time for that. However, this means that when I stand up, I instantly feel like I’m going to topple over because his weight is concentrated in a low ball. Other symptoms: those night-time Charley Horses (AHHHHHHHHH), getting up every hour, crying at random things (like this video that definitely is not sad or even sentimental)

Belly Button in or out? Flat

What I miss: walking instead of waddling

What I am looking forward to: the first time I get to hold him. I seriously dream about baby cuddles every single night.

Upcoming appointments/events: 12/28 OB – we’re in the bi-weekly appointments now

Weekly Wisdom: get the nursery done in the 2nd trimester, I know this is aggressive, but by the third, you probably won’t be up for organizing, building, rearranging. I feel so settled knowing everything is ready for Baby.

Milestones: Bump’s first Christmas – I’m a purist and won’t say Baby’s first Christmas until he has one on the outside.

Bump Picture:
32 weeks pregnant

32 weeks pregnant
The funny one

2015 In Review

24309514106_89e32b9bc6_bLooking back on 2015 seems like a blur. I feel like I wrote our 2014 post two days ago. Time is crazy. Anyways, I’ll summarize 2015 as water, woods, and surgeries.

Jimmy

Jimmy took up hunting this year. He also got a compound bow to use hunting (woods). He got two deer this winter, success, so we’ll be enjoying venison chili throughout this year.

Jimmy continued his skeet shooting league. He was captain this year. He also joined two lacross leagues, which he loves.

Jimmy is still working as the Geotechnical Department Manager at the National Harbor office, which he loves.

Ingrid

In 2015, I finished my first half marathon! In well under the time I predicted. And I did not walk once – that was my main goal, well that and not just give up and lay on the side of the road.

Speaking of health, I discovered a new love affair with Pure Barre. I was a ballet dancer for oh, 10 years of my life, so this workout brings back all of the memories. It’s hard. It’s fun. It makes me so happy! And, it’s a fantastic workout. Jimmy was the best and got me classes for Christmas (it’s sadly, very expensive:( )

I took a wonderful girls trip to Smith Mountain Lake with some of my best college friends.

In the most exciting news, I got lasik! I absolutely love it! In the most painful news, I got my wisdom teeth out in December (all four and two were impacted) and that was brutal. (two surgeries there)

We (Ingrid & Jimmy)

We spent almost every Spring & Summer weekend in Southern Maryland (woods & water). We helped my parents work on the new property throughout the Spring and then enjoyed boating, fishing, bow shooting (Jimmy), swimming, and family time throughout the summer. It is Kai’s favorite place in the world so we go as often as we can. It’s all about the dog amiright?

We went to the Outer Banks for a Memorial Day trip with a bunch of friends, that was a blast. Jimmy really enjoyed surf fishing. (water)

We went to the Penthouse twice, once with Ted & Lauren, and once with Kurt & Kate. (more water). We’re so thankful to have that property in the family.

We saw Cinderella during a wonderful night out with Jimmy’s parents and sister Katie for my birthday – thank you!

We went to our 6th Vintage Virginia wine festival.

We celebrated our third anniversary.

We went to Blacksburg for a football game with some great friends. In true Bburg fashion, it was cold and rainy the whole time, but man, it was wonderful to be back!

Finally, we hosted a fun New Years Eve party for our friends to close out the year.

Looking ahead to 2016.

I am copying and pasting from my 2014 (and sadly 2015) posts because, well, we very much failed on accomplishing any of our goals. Whoops. I’ll write a little commentary on if we completed anything or not.

From 2014 & 2015 posts:

“This is also a challenge because you never really know where life is going to go, but I do see some things happening.

We have some house projects we want to complete:” (reflections on my 2014 list)

  • Fixing our side steps. The concrete’s been struggling since I was around 12 so we’re going to just replace it with a pressure treated wood step/landing/storage thing – this is clearly more Jimmy & my Dad’s plan – We did this!!!!!
  • Finishing painting. In 2012/2013 we painted the living room, dining room, master bedroom, kitchen, guest bedrooms (2) & Jimmy’s video game room. In 2014 2015 2016, we have the entryway, stairway, hallway, 3 bathrooms & basement and we’re done [whew] – didn’t do any of this.
  • Landscaping. There are plans for the backyard. I am vaguely aware of them. I have stated Sugar’s stones stay. That’s all I care about. – nope, not done. Actually not even started…
  • Building a slate patio in the backyard. – didn’t even start this either
  • Organization. As much as I hate to admit, I still have a couple of boxes of my things that don’t have a place in our home yet. I want to get everything organized and condensed as much as possible this year. – those boxes are still there. Things are a little better organized – our pantry and linen closet definitely – but still a ways to go on everything else.

Grade: D

New 2015 projects & goals: (let’s be ambitious and add to the list we didn’t accomplish last year, that’s totally the way to do this life planning thing, right?)

  • Helping restore/renovate Hotel California (new property addition to the Freemyer family – posts to come) – we did this!
  • Renovating our two bathrooms – nope, maybe not doing that and actually doing the kitchen (depending on if you talk to me or Jimmy)
  • I: Run in my first half marathon – did this!

Grade: B

Since it worked so well the last time, let’s add some more goals here.

  • Declutter. “Living clean in 2016.” I want to get rid of the clothes/crafts/stuff we don’t use any more and simplify and declutter our lives.
  • continue as many Pure Barre classes as possible

 

Trips for 2015:

  • Penthouse to enjoy the beach – did this twice, A for I&J
  • Hotel California to enjoy boating – did this all Spring & Summer, and some Fall actually, A for I&J
  • Colorado to visit Todd – nope, did not happen
  • Blacksburg for a Tech game – scheduled for October – yep, did this!

Grade: B+

Trips for 2016:

  • Penthouse to enjoy the beach
  • Hotel California to enjoy boating
  • Colorado to visit Todd
  • Boston for a Lombardo family reunion of sorts

Well, considering how successful we were in 2014 2015, I’m going to leave our projects, goals, and trips at that and see how we do.

2014 In Review

Looking back on 2014 is more challenging than on 2013 (did not see that one coming). But maybe that’s a good thing. We’re settling into our life together and finding comfort in our routines. Of course, there were some highlights. We also did a pretty good job of keeping up with our goal of being my physically active/fit.

Jimmy

Most importantly: Jimmy turned 30! We celebrated in a very “Jimmy way” starting with Jimmy and the guys going shooting. Then meeting up with some friends & family for lunch (and lots of beers) at Blackfin in Merrifield. Followed by a brief break and then heading to dinner at Ray’s the Steaks with the rest of the Racines. It was great.

Jimmy also discovered a new love for skeet shooting. He joined a shooting league through work and has really enjoyed learning this new skill.

Speaking of work, Jimmy got a promotion and is now the Geotechnical Department Manager at a new National Harbor office.

Jimmy also played in a lacrosse league this year. That is until a knee injury took him out of the game.

Ingrid

In 2014, I registered for my 1st half marathon and trained my butt off for that. And then injured my ankle so I couldn’t run in the race. But, I am already signed up for another one (it’s in a few weeks) so I’m going to complete this goal. Towards the end of the year, I got a new job that I’m enjoying a lot. I took a couple trips to Blacksburg.

We (Ingrid & Jimmy)

Looking ahead to 2015.

I am copying and pasting from my 2014 post because, well, we very much failed on accomplishing any of our goals. Whoops. I’ll write a little commentary on if we completed anything or not.

From 2014 post:

“This is also a challenge because you never really know where life is going to go, but I do see some things happening.

We have some house projects we want to complete:” (reflections on my 2014 list)

  • Fixing our side steps. The concrete’s been struggling since I was around 12 so we’re going to just replace it with a pressure treated wood step/landing/storage thing – this is clearly more Jimmy & my Dad’s plan – didn’t do this. Need to complete this year.
  • Finishing painting. In 2012/2013 we painted the living room, dining room, master bedroom, kitchen, guest bedrooms (2) & Jimmy’s video game room. In 2014 2015 we have the entryway, stairway, hallway, 3 bathrooms & basement and we’re done [whew] – again, didn’t do any of this.
  • Landscaping. There are plans for the backyard. I am vaguely aware of them. I have stated Sugar’s stones stay. That’s all I care about. – nope, not done. Actually not even started…
  • Building a slate patio in the backyard. – didn’t even start this either
  • Organization. As much as I hate to admit, I still have a couple of boxes of my things that don’t have a place in our home yet. I want to get everything organized and condensed as much as possible this year. – those boxes are still there. Things are a little better organized – our pantry and linen closet definitely – but still a ways to go on everything else.

Grade: F

New projects & goals: (let’s be ambitious and add to the list we didn’t accomplish last year, that’s totally the way to do this life planning thing, right?)

  • Helping restore/renovate Hotel California (new property addition to the Freemyer family – posts to come)
  • Renovating our two bathrooms
  • I: Run in my first half marathon

We have some trips we want to take: (reflecting on my 2014 list)

  • Boston to visit Ted & Lauren and Jimmy’s family – we did this! A for I&J
  • Penthouse to enjoy the beach – we did this! twice! A+ for I&J
  • Cottage – not really a trip trip but we want to go here more this summer. Kai just loves it here and so do we. – eh, not really, maybe one or two trips, so D?
  • Germany or Hawaii – clearly the details aren’t worked out on this one – this one did not happen
  • St. Louis to be in Ted & Lauren’s wedding – we did this! A for I&J

Grade: B-

Trips for 2015:

  • Penthouse to enjoy the beach
  • Hotel California to enjoy boating
  • Colorado to visit Todd
  • Blacksburg for a Tech game – scheduled for October

Well, considering how successful we were in 2014, I’m going to leave our projects, goals, and trips at that and see how we do.

Bringing in 2015

This year we kept it low-key and had a few close friends over to ring in the new year. It worked out for the best since it was cold out (shocker) and I really didn’t feel like going out. Yesterday my wonderful Oma passed. It was a long time coming, but that doesn’t make it any easier. So having some of my best friends, Jimmy, Kai, and a fire sounded perfect to me.

New Years 2015

Kai is not amused
Kai is not amused

We did have a great Baked Brie and Cranberry Braid I made.

Baked Brie braid

I usually write our goals for the upcoming year, but I’ll save that for another post.

It’s Christmas Time Again

Christmas 2014

I think this is our most beautiful tree ever. Mainly because I totally “hacked Christmas.” I was inspired by this post I found via Pinterest and used two different Christmas light bulbs. It made the tree so much brighter and created more shadows. I also went old school and used all brown wrapping paper. I did decorate the presents with red, gold & silver ribbons and bows, but of course, didn’t take a picture of that. Oh well.

I did take a picture of the gold tipped manicure I gave myself. Kurt calls it a “Dubai Manicure” instead of your traditional white tipped French Manicure.

Gold tip nails

And the only picture we took on Christmas is Kai enjoying his presents: a deer antler & a new super soft blanket.
Kai's Christmas presents

I’ll end with the bumper sticker we are currently rocking on Jimmy’s car: “Keep Christ in Christmas.” Amen.

Thankful Heart

I’ve always loved Thanksgiving. Maybe it’s because I’m sentimental and like to reflect on what I’m thankful for. Maybe it’s because it’s right after my birthday so I typically get a card or gift. Maybe it’s because I very much enjoy eating comfort foods like green bean casserole. Whatever it is, I love this holiday.

This year we spent it like we typically do:

  • Thanksgiving Lunch at the Racine house in VA (Jimmy’s family) This, as always, ended with a few fun and hilarious rounds of Buzz – I 100% lost every round, but had a blast
  • Thanksgiving Dinner at the Erickson house (my aunt & uncle’s) in MD (my family)

Yes, this means every year Jimmy and I eat two thanksgiving dinners. It is glorious. And difficult. And I wouldn’t change it at all.

Jimmy and I are very lucky because our families live close to one another and get along. So we do some holidays all together, but I like the individual time with each family as well. It’s a little less chaotic so you get the quality time.

Now on to the sentimental:

This year I am thankful for:

  • my wonderful family (both sides) – they support & love me and are some of my favorite people
  • Jimmy – he is definitely part of my family, but I felt he should have his own line
  • Kai – I consider him part of my family but he gets a special shout-out for being the best. And on Kai’s note, I’m thankful for my Uncle David. Kai was very sick this year. After being on antibiotics for a few days, he still wasn’t getting any better so I emergency rushed Kai to my uncle (who is an amazing vet) in MD. My uncle took so much time and care to make sure Kai got the treatment he needed. Kai being sick was the absolute worst so I am so thankful he is back to his wonderful doggie self.
  • my new job that is so close to our house
  • our house
  • my ankle finally healing so I can start exercising again – sadly not in time for the half marathon, but I will sign up for another.
  • Jimmy’s promotion

And probably so much else I can’t even think of.

6 Years Together

6 years ago today, I started dating Jimmy. This is my fun post to him. All about our story.

Jimmy and I met 6 years and 3 months ago on a spring break cruise.

We went on a week long cruise from Charleston, SC to Grand Cayman Island, Cozumel, and Key West.

We cruised on the Norwegian Cruise Line’s “Norwegian Majesty.” Now retired (I feel old).

Although we both went to Virginia Tech, we had never met. He was in grad school and I was an undergrad. He went on the cruise with his fraternity and I went with my sorority.

We happened to be assigned rooms that were two doors down from each other.

He walked past my room like:

And I was like:

And after that we were

188202_1002371030556_3892_n

Although we weren’t officially boyfriend and girlfriend until June 18.

Fast forward 4 years later when this happened

So we got married,
483500_10101333610096533_1967631527_n

Bought a house,

And got a dog (not in that order)
e-Kai

Although we celebrate our anniversary on our wedding anniversary now, none of this would have happened if not for that cruise and June 18.

Love you Jimmy!