a festive schmorgasbord

Ready for some slightly old photos and a recap of a holiday from 10 days ago? Coming right at ya!

Independence Day is one of my favorite holidays. While, I could really do without the summer heat, it's still a great reminder that the country we live in is great and worth celebrating. Also, who doesn't love fireworks?! This is the first time we've been at home for the holiday since we moved back to Colorado. Usually we are camping up in the mountains in Montana with family this time of year. You can read about our adventures last year here.

So this year, instead of driving 10 hours away from my doctor and our hospital at 38 weeks pregnant, we celebrated at home. Our neighborhood has a kid parade along our main street followed up my popsicles at the community pool. It sounded like the perfect, close to home activity to celebrate the holiday.  The kiddos were encouraged to decorate their bikes.  The last time I was in Target, I tried to stock up on red, white, and blue stuff to decorate their bikes with. Also, the standard patriotic Old Navy t-shirt was almost the uniform of choice for most kids.

I think we made a pretty decent run at being patriotic for the holiday. I was even able to dig out a color appropriate shirt out of my rapidly dwindling supply of maternity clothes that still fit. My belly is definitely not fitting into all of my maternity clothes anymore. 

sidenote: still pregnant, fitting in even less clothes........

While the 'burbs get a bad rap from a lot of people (read: young people without kids), I am really starting to enjoy living here. Having young kids in a neighborhood full of other young kids and families is super nice. There are tons of walking paths and pocket parks tucked into each little neighborhood. Pretty much every night we are out taking a walk and we see lots of other families doing the same thing. The sidewalks are large enough for two bikes or two scooters and with big mature trees, we are able to enjoy the shade even if the sun is still up. 

Don't get me wrong though, if we had the choice, we'd take a little farm in Montana over the suburbs of Colorado any day. But our jobs keep us here and for now we are happy growing our little family in the 'burbs.

Speaking of growing, did you see that sidenote up there? No baby yet! My due date is tomorrow and I'm SOOO ready to meet this little one. I haven't ever gone this far in my pregnancies before and so it's all uncharted territory at this point. Also, I'm getting really sick of people trying to tell me all these things to do to start labor. Yes, I know (wink wink) what I should be doing, but medical science still doesn't understand what actually starts labor, so neither do you.

Can you tell I'm done? Haha. I apologize to anyone who has been around me for the past week or so. I have very little patience these days...

I hope you are all having a wonderful weekend!!

polo ponies and 36 weeks pregnant

A couple weeks ago, the girls headed north to spend some time with their nanny and papa in Montana. This was the first trip that the girls had taken on their own and left us parents for a few days. We would normally have spent the fourth of July up in Montana camping with family, but since our baby girl is due to show up any day now, I didn't really want to be camping several hours from a hospital. In order to makeup for the missed family time, the girls headed up in June to visit instead.

Chris and I were invited to family day at the Denver Polo Classic. We didn't have the girls with us, but we definitely looked like a growing family!! It's pretty entertaining the comments you get walking around with a big baby bump. Also, as you would imagine, there were plenty of other expectant mothers waddling around in the heat. We gave each other lots of knowing looks.

While I couldn't partake in any champagne, it was fun to get dressed up and watch a Polo match. We went last year and had a really good time, so we knew this year would be just as fun. Also, we got to push in a few divots back into the ground before we headed back home to relax.

Craters of Moon National Monument and Idaho

Oh my goodness, it's been a full month since these pictures and trip were taken. Honestly my brain has been taken over by baby prep and work stress lately. The last month has been full of lots of work commitments and when I am home it's all family time and trying to remember everything I need to keep a baby alive. 

At the end of May, the girls and I took a trip to Idaho to visit my parents. Chris had to head out of town on a work trip (to France, poor guy), so I decided to take a week off also and see my parents. It was nice to relax for a week at my parents house and get to spend one on one time with them. Usually I see them during the holidays and all of my siblings are around (read: madhouse). I love to see all of my family together, but that many personalities in one house can sometimes be stressful.

This time around the girls got to run around outside, play in the dirt, pet sheep, and generally run free. My mother was worried she didn't have enough toys or activities, but luckily Chloe and Elinor are super good at making up their own games and adventures without much help. I'd like to take credit for some of that (very limited screen time and no computer games), but I think they are just generally good kids. 

My parents resting on the back porch. This image is grainy (it was taken through a screen door) and the composition is horrible, but they are my parents and I love them, so I had to document it.

One of the day trips we took while we were visiting was to Craters of the Moon National Monument. After visiting, it dawned on me why I ended up pursuing Geological Engineering in college. I was surrounded by such cool geologic features at a young age, and with a brain wired like mine, I would want to learn more about each and every one of them when I went to college. Nerd alert....

Unfortunately, it was pretty rainy spring day on the day we visited. Craters of the Moon is surrounded by a desert, but here we were, enjoying a unexpected wet spell.

We stopped in Arco to pick up some plastic bags, because of course, no one came prepared. I had packed rain jackets but failed to throw them in the car before we left home. Also, Chloe thought it would be a good idea to wear shorts. 

Eventually the rain did stop and we were able to hike a bit and explore the lava tubes. This was definitely the highlight of the trip. Any time caves are involved, I get super excited. Well, only large caves where you don't have to crawl through tight spaces. My fear of small spaces definitely outweighs my fascination with unique geologic features. 

If you are ever around eastern Idaho, I would recommend stopping by. It's also an International Dark Sky Park!

three up, two down

One. This weekend was a pretty great one, despite the temperatures being WAY out of my preferred 55 degrees Fahrenheit range. It was mid-90s here in Denver and while we did spend a lot of time in the AC, we did get out a bit also.

Saturday morning I attended a baby shower for the newest addition to our family. I had always thought that only the oldest kid got a baby shower and all of the rest of the babies were welcomed with about half the fanfare. Well, my wonderful friend decided to throw a baby shower anyway. It was sweet and thoughtful and made me feel all warm and fuzzy. 

I wrote a bit about it on Instagram, but friendship can be such a hard thing when you get older and busier. It's truly one of the best things about moving back to Colorado. These ladies get me and all my weirdness. 

Two. Holy cow, it's been hot. Have I mentioned that? Also, who's great idea was it to get pregnant and have a baby in the summertime? Oh yeah, that was my idea... The heat has been no joke. Also, as as a result of the heat, my poor swollen ankles!!

Also, yes, it's totally weird to take a picture of yourself in the glass of an office building. I'm pretty sure whoever inside is also wondering what the hell I'm up too. But hey, that's what my 35 week baby belly looks like!

Three. Rugby is an awesome sport. 

Chris and I went to a Rugby match on Saturday. USA vs. Russia. It was a really fun event to go to and we had some good seats to watch these massive guys duke it out. Also, USA won by a massive margin. 62-13. Go USA!!

Four. What in the world is happening these days? Anthony Bourdain?! We're in a tiff with Canada over tariffs? Kate Spade

Five. I'm 4 weeks out from having a new baby girl! I am getting a bit more freaked out about the actual delivery process, truth be told. I'm attempting a VBAC this time and while my chance of success is roughly 65%, I have no illusions that I have any control over the process once it all starts. After two unplanned c-sections, I am just going to let the doctors do what they need to do when the time comes. 

This weekend we put the girls into one room together and turned Elinor's room back into a baby's room. The crib is up. The first coat of yellow paint is on the dresser. The car seat is getting cleaned out and spiffed up again. The baby clothes have been sorted and are waiting to be washed. It's all happening!!

Let me know if there are any baby products I absolutely need to buy this time around. I feel like I'm out of the baby gear loop. There is always some new product showing up and I haven't had a baby in a few years! Comment below!