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I am a happily married new mom who loves exploring, creating new adventures and loving on my sweet daughter. I am a K-2 teacher who is now staying at home with my little one! Welcome as I explore all things a part of my sweet city love!
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7 month update!

HOW is she 7 months?! I'm in serious denial that my squishy newborn that kept us awake for nights on end and shook us to our emotional core is 7 months.  She's such an angel here on earth. I can't even put into words the happiness and joy she brings to our life.  Her personality is really starting to shine and I love that she is so different than her big sis - it's just so fun learning all about you, our sweet girl.
  • You are sitting up like a boss lady! You only wobble here and there (enough for a few head bumps to have happened :/) but overall you just LOVE this new freedom and vantage point!
  • You are starting to try rolling from your back to your tummy.  You skipped this and went straight to sitting! But I think we're only a few days away from rolling!
  • As of a few days ago - you are swaddle free! We've been swaddling one arm for about a month now and just ripped off the swaddle bandaid for good.  You've done brilliantly (you even slept until 8am this morning...whhhat?!)
  • You are now enjoying purees and have quite an addiction to butternut squash and sweet potatoes.  I think you'd eat both for every single meal.  You also love avocado, apple, oranges and broccoli but aren't a fan of peas or anything sweet in a puree form.  You tried eggs for the first time this morning and were a bit skeptical.
  • You LOVE your bath and especially love the snuggles after.  You give us approximately three minutes before you erupt in the cutest little tears for your bottle.  You snuggle in deep with dad and are starting to try and hold your own bottle!
  • You don't like to be put down.  You love, love being held in our arms or in the carrier and you also love being in the stroller.  I don't think I've ever heard you fuss once when in your stroller.  Being outside is your absolute favorite!
  • You're still exclusively nursing and I'm pretty proud of that! I wasn't sure we'd make it past week 2 and here we are :)
I just want to bottle up these days and never let them go.  We love watching you grow, watching you begin to interact with your sister (Emma takes Charlotte's 'order' when playing restaurant and then eats all of her stickers...hehe) and watching your personality shine.  We have so many hopes and dreams for you, little one. You are so very loved!


Emma's Birth Story

Emma Frances, my calm, loving, observant baby girl was born on April 17, 2015.  My goodness, this little baby has changed my life in more ways that I ever thought.  She's made my marriage stronger, she's shown me a new kind love for Charlotte, she's made me feel stronger and more capable than ever before in my life.
She hung on 8 days after her due date.  8 of the longest days of my life.  I was so uncomfortable, so anxious and such an emotional mess.  My midwife told me about 2 weeks before my due date that I was dilated, that the baby was really low and that I could have her at anytime.  My midwife is amazing and since she's such a part of me becoming a mom twice - I honestly love her.  However, her telling me that I was dilated and ready was a mistake! I couldn't sleep, it messed with my pysche.  I felt like a walking time bomb.  Would my water break at the grocery store? Would I wake up in the night having contractions? Would we have to call my brother-in-law in the middle of the night?? People also kept asking and asking.  Very sweet and thoughtful but exhausting.  NO, she wasn't here.  Yes, I was ready.  Yes, I was anxious.  Yes,  I could burst into tears at any time.

My sister came to visit (with plans on being here after the baby was born) 5 days after my due date and instead of snuggling with the baby, just got to take care of my emotional pregnant self.  We had foot soaks, yoga meditations and delicious lunches.  It was truly perfect.  When she left Wednesday, I went to the doctor and had my SECOND membrane sweet (not painful at all, hooray!) and then the next morning my parents came up to be with us and care for Charlotte during my induction that was scheduled for Friday morning. I really, desperately, wanted the experience of going into labor at home at not being induced.  I didn't get that experience with Charlotte and it was so important to me.  So having to be induced just made me even more emotional.  I know all that matters is a healthy baby but I so wanted that drive in labor to the hospital, the timing of contractions on my own...

Praise God, contractions started early Thursday. On and off all day.  I walked and walked and walked and was able to walk through the sporadic contractions.  We had dinner together, took our last pictures as a family of three, and told mom and dad that they may be getting a call from me tonight (fully expecting that not to happen since I was scheduled to be in the hospital at 8am).  Sure enough, by 9:00pm, the contractions became regular.  Every 9 minutes.  I called our midwife, who wasn't even on call, and said that she wanted to deliver our baby and that she was heading in.  Amazing, right? We both showered, finished packing, called my parents and left for the hospital a little before midnight.  I remember the epidural taking forever with my first delivery, so I asked for it almost right away.  Contractions were picking up big time and I knew they'd start snowballing quickly.  The epidural was placed around 1:30 and was flawless.  C and I talked, took some pictures, slept a little and then I woke up feeling a lot of pressure.  The nurse came in, I gave a little push and then she told me to stop, the baby was coming! Our midwife came in and a few quick pushes later and Emma Frances was born at 6:02am weighing 7lbs 8 oz, 4 ounces heavier than her sister.  She was lifted onto my chest, began nursing almost immediately and I felt just so calm, peaceful and absolutely in love.  I never wanted to let her go.

She's so spectacular.  She completes our family in the most perfect way.  My heart aches for her when she's not in my arms.  We're close - bonded together in the most special way on earth.  My baby girl, my sweet Emma.


The Learning Studio

Blog friends!! Hello!! I read your blogs everyday but I cannot believe I haven't posted since little C was a few months old.  We have the most beautiful, amazing, joyful, spirited 18 month old now!

Since our family lives far away, I was trying to find a way to connect her to her aunts, uncles and grandparents in a way that is natural and meaningful (and not tied to something digital).   I made these photo tiles for Charlotte with pictures of her family and she LOVES them.  She puts them inside her little pocketbook.  She feeds her family pancakes at breakfast.  She pushes them in her baby stroller.  She's learned the names of her aunts and uncles.  They've been priceless.  I thought maybe other moms would enjoy something similar for their little cherubs.  The Learning Studio was born!  Send me an email (bevin.irby[at]gmail.com) and I'd love to create photo tiles (magnetic or non-magnetic) for you!  See my Etsy page for my details about ordering: www.etsy.com/shop/thelearningstudio