December 31, 2015

The whirlwind that was 2015.

Last year at this time, I'll admit I was exhausted and sort of stressed. A 4 month old and a 2.5 year old kept me on my toes constantly, and taking time to slow down and enjoy the holidays was a bit hard. But what a difference a year has made. I feel like we've really figured out this whole family of four thing. The year flew by and I found myself flipping through my iphone and facebook this morning reminiscing over all the things that we packed into it! So here we go, a 2015 year in review. And please note as the year went on, I got more sleep and my memory and picture taking skills increased. It was a good, good year.

We started off the new year by celebrating with friends, and tucking ourselves into bed on NYE around 10pm. Babies, toddlers, and parents never need to see the midnight hour. We spent some good family time with Stella and Olivia, Sienna discovered a whole new world of dress up, and we finally started to emerge from the newborn days. Piper's smile and ability to sit up on her own (both my kiddos seem to get the sitting thing down early but crawling took way longer). I also was really bad at taking pictures because- sleep deprivation. 

We love February in this house. It's birthday crazy month + Valentine's day and while the Hallmark holidays don't always get my vote, anything that celebrates love and being loved gets a thumbs up. My birthday rolled around and Sienna was extremely excited about the concept of cake. Cake was pretty much the theme of this month. February brought Sienna's birthday (3!) where we went to the carousel and Giggleberry at Peddler's Village, and then Sienna and Stella got the treat of a snowstorm that afternoon that left sledding as the only necessary play opportunity the next day. Piper also turned 6 months and entered my favorite stage of baby-dom. 


March usually marks the end of winter, and the gateway to spring: St. Patrick's Day celebrations. It also marked days of sunshine where we got out of the house. Sienna, Piper, and I did a LOT of playground time. The swings became P's favorite activity. Piper also decided to roll and climb and move all over her crib and that photo was before we lowered the crib. We celebrated a (quiet) St. Patrick's day at my parents house. We reveled in the fact that spring... was around the corner. Notably, in March, Piper was sick on and off a LOT. I was losing sleep and my mind, but I thankfully did not document that process via photos. 

Sweet Stella's birthday is actually the last weekend in March, but it was celebrated in April. Doc McStuffins was her theme and as usual the girls had a blast. Keeping tiny fingers out of the cake proved to be a challenging task. April also marked the beginning of Sienna's start of spring daddy + me soccer, which was more successful than ballet would come to be, but not perfect.  Sarah was home from SF for a short stint during her birthday weekend and a visit at her parents with the babies was just what the proverbial doctor ordered. Piper learned that sharing Sienna's toys was super fun, while Sienna learned that it was definitely.not.her.favorite. We celebrated Easter at Jamie's aunt and uncles with the whole family and lots of chocolate (S couldn't even take a family photo because she was really into consuming her treats) from a kids Easter Egg hunt. I also got to sneak in a night away with Kelly and Sarah for a day at the spa and a good solid dinner and night of sleep. Hilarious that 2/3 of us were pumping and Kelly was pregnant with baby boy #2. 

May was jam packed. In a good way. May brought something really lovely which was that Piper was sleeping better and I got to drop down to only 3-4 pumping sessions a day. In the world of feeding, that was a huge relief. We popped into Bordentown, NJ to meet Anna and Brendan's new baby Graham, Haley and Frank's little Isla, and to see Caleb and the Millers. We left from NJ and drove up to Connecticut where we celebrated Mother's day, stayed in a hotel (with a pool which was important to Sienna), and got to visit both great grandmothers.  We also took our annual trip to the Wilmington Flower Market at Rockford Park, where Sienna got to go on rides to her heart's content. My dad and I (and my cousins and uncle) went to the Who Concert in Philly. It brought back memories of seeing them do Tommy while pregnant with Sienna at the Mann Center.  No wonder my kiddos love music. We got in our wedding time when my sweet friend Beth and her now hubby Mike tied the knot at Greenville Country Club- We've come a long way since natti light and blue jello, Beebs. We trekked up to Yardley to celebrate the Memorial Day parade, and Piper loved it (until the loud fire engine came through and she nearly had a panic attack). We rounded out the month of may with a BBQ at my parents and GLADLY welcomed summer...

You know what is really amazing? Holding newborn babies your friends birthed. Liz and Brendan's sweet little guy, Declan was so tiny and my girls were so intrigued by him. Declan's nursery is also one of the cutest I've seen. We also had a play date in Yardley with Mr. Caleb.  June means summer. And summer means... the creek! Behind our house, down a hill, and through the woods is a toddler's favorite thing ever: water. Sienna loves venturing down with Jamie and I can only imagine that both will be trampling through the soggy leaves and breaking twigs come this summer. I love this piece of heaven behind our house.  We visited St. Anthony's Italian festival where Sienna got to go on- you guessed it- MORE rides and I started eating cheese again and devoured anything labeled mozzarella. We also made our first annual appearance at the Hagley fireworks. We need a bigger spread next year. Sienna LOVED it. She stayed up until 10pm. She danced. She partied. It was a blast. We rounded out the end of the month with a week in Rehoboth. Sienna and Hazel were bff, and so pumped to spend so much time together. Piper loved the beach and was so brave, but toddling and eating sand are tiring!

Happy Birthday month, Jamie! We celebrated Jamie's birthday with cake at home and the next day (the 4th!) we headed to Jamie's aunt and uncles newish house in Worton, MD and had a fabulous time playing with cousins-read: Sienna hanging with the older girls and P refusing nap, boating, and eating. It's so much fun to have these big family gatherings and see all of Jamie's cousins! Amy and Lance were the first extended family of Jamie's I met (they live out in CA) and their kiddos were potty training. Now they are the "big kids" Time seriously flies! We also spent a TON of time in July at the YMCA and on our back deck playing in water tables. We made the trek to Westfield, NJ to visit my friend Sarah so Sienna and Morgan could play (and to meet newborn Milly!)It was a solidly wonderful summer month of rivers, pools, and Hawaiian shaved ice.  Piper also started walking well in early July, and was all over the place by the time August came! 

Apparently August is when I started taking more photos and my brain began to function better. That makes sense, a year out from having baby 2.0. I'm glad I document things , because even looking back a few months ago I was struggling to remember all of the adventures we had. I digress. The very first weekend in August I drove up to CT with the two girls, Jamie meeting us via train later. We celebrated my aunt and uncle's 40th anniversary and aunt's birthday. We visited the great grandmas again- so joyful to watch them with the babies. On friday afternoons we often found ourselves at the Carousel Park farmer's market- and on good days J got out of work earlyish to meet us there. Sienna always sang along to the performers while Piper scarfed down whatever food we would buy her. Homemade lemonade and some sort of fresh baked dessert always graced our blanket. When Matt and Sam were away, we took a field trip to meet their kids and my parents at the Plumpton Park Zoo and feed the giraffe. My littlest love, Piper Emily, turned ONE! on August 22 and we celebrated with a big backyard bash at our house. August ended with the best family vaca to Avalon for a week. We got a visit from Melissa, Scott, and Alex, played on the beach, swam in the pool, drank cocktails on the deck after the kiddos were in bed, and of course visited our fav restaurants. By the time we packed our car to go home, we were exhausted but happy. Summer has never been better to us. 

Lucky us, September was amazingly warm and allowed us two more long weekends at the beach. But only after my big girl started SCHOOL! Sienna began 3's preschool at Developing Minds at St. James Church this fall. They've been good to her- she's loved it, and the first day of school will always hold a very special place in this gushy mama's heart. Then came our beach getaways- the stuff people dream about- nice enough weather to stroll the boardwalk and the beach, cool enough and late enough in the season that there are no crowds. Thanks, Rehoboth. You were oh so good to us. We jetted down for a weekend so I could babysit Caleb while Sarah and Chris went to her cousin Emily's wedding. You know we take any excuse to beach it. The next weekend, we packed up our girls again and stayed in the cottage next to Jamie's family while he did the Dewey Tri with his friends. And Sienna started ballet- which lasted a whopping 4 classes before she decided ballet takes too much patience and any sport mom can't observe directly just isn't for her. Touche kid- find your thing and love it. Fall was here, 

The first weekend in October, Miss Olivia turned one and we partied at their house with the kids, and a guest Mickey visitor. The next day we hopped on down to lower DE for Hazel's 5th party which included a really awesome cake and playing in an outside castle. It also included a horse ride for Sienna who has finally warmed up to Pop's pets.  I traveled to CT to meet Kelly's sweetest new member, Brody, and to play with my buddy Jake. Friends babies melt my heart. We took a few trips to Milburn Orchards this fall, and Sienna and Stella had a blast. In mid October, we celebrated our 5th wedding anniversary. We have so much to be thankful for over the past five years- but mostly I'm grateful for a steady, loyal, kind, caring husband who puts his family first. We jetted to Maine (my first flight since having P!) for 5 days away alone. We ate lobster rolls, we slept in, we read books, we watched movies (in a theater!), and we enjoyed time together uninterrupted by crying babies and singing toddlers. We were whisked back to reality when P was diagnosed with croup and Sienna a stomach virus the day we came home. Parenthood is hilarious. October ended with my two girls being lambs for Halloween and Piper tasting her first piece of chocolate- she's officially sold on M&M's. 

Ohhh November, you and the holiday season really arrived quickly this year. Keeping with the busy schedule, we packed weekends full of activities. Sienna went to her first solo soccer Union game with daddy (she was pumped about all the treats and the cheering!), my girls spent a ton of time learning they could actually amuse and play with each other, I took Sienna to see Peppa Pig Live! My mom and I joined my cousin Kim for wedding dress shopping (It's pretty darn cool when one of your life long best friends gets engaged to your cousin... wedding blog to come in June). We had family photos taken at a Christmas tree farm. We squeezed in another Caleb play date (this was a theme apparently of 2015). We took Sienna with us on a 5k for Alex's Lemonade Stand in honor of Declan. Thanksgiving brought us to Jamie's aunt and uncles (we spent a lot of time at aunt and uncle's houses apparently!) We decorated our house and tree for Christmas the minute Thanksgiving moved out the door because Sienna couldn't wait any longer. And it started to get dark so darn early that we began letting Piper do things like paint..... scary right? 

The year end month that usually brings us at least a snow flurry was laden with days in the 60s and 70s. It felt like anything but winter and Christmas at times, while other times I found myself still 100% in the spirit as the lights went up and I shopped for our adopt a family. Sienna helped this year- I'm trying my best to instill in her that helping other people is one of the most important parts of life. December was jam packed- Sienna got to go to my parents for Christmas cookie baking and polar express with Stella.  Piper and I also had some super fun mornings while S was at preschool, one of my favorites being the time she learned to squeeeeze play doh and laugh hysterically each subsequent time. We went bridesmaid dress shopping with Kim and my girls thought every accessory in the store was for them. Jamie and I went to his work holiday party, but apparently took no photo. Sienna had her first school concert -- the adorableness of it all was overwhelmingly joyful. We spent the weekend before Christmas at the Walls celebrating with the cousins- and Hazel and Keller are Sienna's idols. By Christmas eve, we settled in at my parents with the rest of the chaotic clan (4 kids under 4...) and celebrated Santa's arrival and a bazillion presents.  For NYE we head to Matt and Sam's, where "the countdown" will occur at 8pm, not 12am, and then we will go home, tuck our babies into their beds, have a glass of wine, and reminisce about our year- and probably fall asleep before we ever see the clock strike midnight. 

Happy, happy new year friends. We love you all and can't wait to see what 2016 brings!! 

The Walls Family 2015


Post a Comment

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...