Wednesday, August 5, 2015

generation three is coming!

It all started with these two, decades ago. 

These two sweet ladies, Mare and Deb, were the best of friends for most of their lives. My sweet Aunt Mare (on the left) passed away after battling ALS and my precious Mom now lives with the memories they shared.

Almost thirty years ago, their friendship passed down to a new generation. My dear friend, Jillian (the cutie in the blue dress on the right), and I (the baby) have had a sweet and beautiful friendship, even stronger as we are adults, like our moms were.
 And now we are both married (to these cute guys, who are just as similar as Jilly and I are) and between us, baby five is on it's way! My sweet Jilly is having a baby GIRL! Our sweet Zelie and her sweet Baby F will now be able to have a whole new generation of love and friendship like their moms and grandmas.
I can't wait for her baby girl to get here so I can spoil her and love on her like her momma has done to all my kiddos.

Jilly and I live states apart and rarely get to see each other, but we keep in touch as best we can with the distance between us. She is so dear, so fun, such a pick-me-up to my bad days. She has a spirit just like her mom, so full of enthusiasm, joy and love! I know she will pass that to her little girl as well. She will be the best mom, because she had the best mom to show her how to love.

I can't wait for the years to come with our kiddos' (all of them) friendships growing like ours did.

Monday, August 3, 2015

momma mondays: meet button

Our sweet little "Button" is here and doing so much better than I anticipated. He is three weeks old today!

We knew our little guy was going to be joining us a bit earlier than his August 24th due date, but I was not expecting it to be as early as it was, July 13th. I went to the specialist on a Thursday and was supposed to see my doctor on the following Monday, but on Friday morning she called me and told me rather than my regular appointment on Monday morning, I would be having my c-section! He didn't even have an official name, other than Button! 

But he's here and he does have a real name! 

Meet David Pio Agustin, aka Button

When my father-in-law passed away back in May, Button still was just Button. We had not thought of any names, first or middle. But within a few days after he passed away and my mind was thinking again, I knew I wanted to name him David. I just didn't know when I could bring it up with my husband to see if he was okay with it and liked the name. While we were up there over the three weeks, he came to me and asked if we could put David in his name somewhere and that is when I asked him if he was okay with naming him after his Dad, using David as his first name. He really liked that and wanted to be sure I didn't feel like we had to name him that. I knew we didn't have to. But I really, really wanted to. So from then on, he was almost officially David, but we didn't tell anyone. We didn't talk about names again for the most part for a while. Our minds were elsewhere with everything going on. In my heart, Pio, after St. Padre Pio, was tugging. It's not the actual name that I love, but more the meaning behind it. As soon as I found out about David's condition I started to lean on Padre Pio, for my worries and his health. And I was blessed twice from that day on and each priest, without knowing of my prayers to Padre Pio, blessed me with his relic. We went back and forth with other names and nothing hit us real well. The night before he was born, the Hubs kept looking through the lists of thousands of names online and we were still back and forth. I still wanted to put Pio in it because I knew he really was a big part of David's journey. After he was born, we knew he was David and then the Hubs said to me (I think in the OR still) that he thought Pio should be his middle name too because David was born so healthy. It was kind of a confirmation to him, to us, that St. Pio was Button's little patron. And the Agustin was a no brainer. Each of our boys has an English and a Spanish name in their name, and each boy has Agustin somewhere in his name so I wanted to carry that on to him. 

David was born weighing only 2 pounds and 8 ounces. So, so tiny. But he was incredibly healthy. He did not even need a minute of breathing help. Everyone was stunned at how healthy he was and how little "help" he needed. He was born strong but tiny, a fighter for sure. 

He has grown so much in the past three weeks and now weighs 3 pounds 9.7 ounces. I'm hoping at the rate he is going he hits the big 4 pounds by the end of this week. 

Thank you all for your prayers for him and the support you have given our family. Though he is healthy and doing so well, it has been a very tiring and difficult time for our family so we appreciate all of the love we have received. If you would like to follow along with his sweet journey, you can follow him at @teambabybutton on Instagram!

Monday, June 29, 2015

momma mondays: baby button

Life has certainly thrown a lot at our family lately. A lot. Honestly, somedays it is more than I feel capable of handling. From the terrible twos to the passing of my father-in-law and everything in between. And then we found out that our sweet boy was not quite up to speed in his growth rate and that there were some complications to monitor. Normally, I would go into complete and utter panic mode. I am a worry wort to the core. I worry about things my kids will do in their teens. They are not even three yet. Not being hysterical with worry and anxiety is a complete miracle in and of itself. Of course I'm on the edge of my seat at each appointment for the latest news and I've left with tears in my eyes at a few of them, but all in all, St. Padre Pio is totally holding me up here with "Pray, Hope, and Don't Worry." He has been my lifeline through it all. 

I have been so weak and broken from losing my father-in-law and trying to help my husband deal with life without his dad, and then adding on the incredibly tiring days with our three little ones right now, that maybe all I can be is strong through this. But it has certainly been hard. I will continue to have bi-weekly appointments with two doctors up until "Button's" arrival. They will monitor the issue and at one of those appointments they will pretty much just tell me it's a go. I may have no warning as to when he is coming, whether it be this week or in four.

Chances are, even though his scheduled arrival date is supposed to be August 24th, he will be showing up even within the next few weeks. So if you all would, please do us a favor and pray that things don't continue to go downhill and that our littlest guy can stay inside as long as possible. We are gearing up for a long road and learning what life in the NICU will be like, but hopefully with all of the prayers, he won't need to spend as much time as I am preparing for. If any of you have experience with a preemie/NICU baby, please send any tips my way! 

So many people are so kind to us, asking how things are going already and if there is a way they can be updated along the way, so I created an Instagram account. I think it may be the easiest and quickest way for me to keep everyone updated. Feel free to follow along at @teambabybutton and #teambabybutton

We will know more in the days and weeks to come as to what life will be like and when he will be arriving and I will try to keep everyone as updated as I can there. And as for my blog... Oh, how I do hope to keep up with this some how and in some way. But please continue to be patient with me as we figure out what is next for us. 

Sunday, June 21, 2015

a beautiful, hard day

Today brings beauty and joy, but yet pain and sadness for all of us, but especially my husband. It is our first Father's Day without his Dad with us. We all so greatly miss him and still cannot figure out life without him. My husband will have to experience balancing the sadness with the great joy of being a father himself. And an amazing father he is. One of the last things my father-in-law said to me in person when he was visiting and in a text a few days before he passed away, was how proud he was of my husband and the father he is. To me, that is one of the greatest joys to know. I was so thankful he shared that with me and I was sure to share the thoughts of his dad along to my husband.

Today we will all be remembering each of the men in our lives that have been father figures to us. Our own fathers, our fathers-in-law, our grandfathers, godfathers, and any men that took on a role of a fatherly figure to us. I am so blessed with an amazing Dad who is an endless giver and a real man of faith. I had two grandfathers that meant the world to me, one passing when I was young and one just a short time ago. And a grandfather still with me, that I was overly blessed to receive when I met Gus. He loves me just like his granddaughter and I love him equally... or maybe more! ;) I have a godfather that brings so much joy, love and laughter to me and I am truly blessed he is mine. My father-in-law will be held in an incredibly special place in my heart as well. He was much more than just my husband's father. From the first times I was in his company, even before any talk of Gus and I getting married, we had a sweet bond. He brought me so, so much laughter and joy. And today, I remember my husband. Our children are truly our greatest gift and I am beyond blessed to raise them with him. 

Our days have been hard lately. Parenting. Life. Loss. All of it. But together, we can get through it all, with love and faith. And I do thank God each and every day that my little ones have the Papi that they do have. They adore him with every ounce of their being. Zelie has the biggest crush on him and our little "Button" will follow along with the others I am sure. He means the world to them now in their young ages, but they don't even quite know the amazingness that he truly is to have in their lives. They will learn that clearly later in life.

I thought I'd share a few recent pictures of Gus and the kids. These are what make my life so full. I am so thankful I have memories like these captured.

Tuesday, June 16, 2015

surviving the unimaginable

You always think you won't be the one that tragedy hits. At least I thought that. Sure, hard things happen and life gets hard. But those really hard, tragic times. No, it'd never happen to us. Please God don't let it be us. But one month ago today, our family was hit with the greatest tragedy I hope any of us ever have to go through. 

My father-in-law passed away very young and very unexpected. I will never ever forget how that morning played out, the moment my brother-in-law called my husband to tell him, watching his reaction out the window while he was on the back deck, running out to see what happened, and taking the phone from him talking to my mother-in-law. I will never forget any of it. And from that moment until today, one month later, life has been beyond hard. Completely unimaginable. I can't wrap my mind and heart around it and many days I feel like it is not real and somehow he is just gone or away for right now.

I fear the future for our whole family. My mother-in-law, my husband and his brother, my kids, myself and my sister-in-law. Life is going to be so different. There will be no more memories with him in it. I've only known him for seven years. Seven way too short years. But some how, he filled those seven years with so much love and kindness and so many memories for me, that I too felt like I lost a lifetime of love. Sure it in no way compares to the feeling of loss my mother-in-law, husband and brother-in-law, but my heart still aches with incredible pain. 

My little guys only had 2 years with him and Zelie less than a year. He knew about Button and was so excited for another grandchild. I am so, so grateful they were all so close with him and loved him so much. There was no one quite like their Grandvater. Some of us worry they won't remember him, but they are smart little ones and by us telling them about him and reminding them of the memories they made with him, they will know who he was. 

My mother-in-law, though completely broken from his loss, is the strongest and most faithful lady I have ever met. In HER time of complete grief, she was our rock of strength and our pillar of faith. She is amazing and never failed to blow me away during the three weeks we spent with her. I pray that if I were ever in her shoes, I'd be half the woman she is in dealing with the tragedy.

Watching my husband grieve the loss of his dad has been heartbreaking and a tragedy in and of itself for me. Helping him walk through these difficult weeks has been so incredibly painful for me. I don't have the best words, I can't do anything to take the pain away or even lessen it. There is absolutely nothing I can really do to help the situation. I try to wrack my brain for any ways to help him, anything to lift his spirits. But sometimes just being there, so he knows I'm here but have given him the space is what I have to do. He may need to talk to someone other than me, or hug someone other than me. That is so hard for me, but whatever it be that he needs, I do. 

We have lost a husband, Papi, Grandvater, son-in-law, and brother-in-law. He was a blessed man to be part of our amazing family, but we were each blessed to have him so special to us. Please keep his soul and our family in your prayers, but especially our Mami, my brother-in-law, and my precious husband. And If any of you have dealt with a loss so painful and have found helpful ways of getting through each day with this new, hard normal, please pass along your suggestions.

I love this picture of the two of us. It was the night before I married his son. We were family long before, but you can see the love and happiness in our eyes. I loved being family with him. And I will always love our memories and keep them tucked in a deep place in my heart. And I will share every ounce of that love and those memories with his "anklekinder" grandkids. We will drink milkshakes and sit and talk about him. We will dance to Taylor Swift. We will browse Swarovski stores. And we will watch silly YouTube videos. We will always love you, Papi.

Monday, June 1, 2015

Momma Mondays: I'm Back!

I've been gone for a long time, but I was gone for a reason. 
Yep! We will be a family of six comes August! Life has been c r a z y! A newborn, two two year olds, morning sickness and first trimester exhaustion. I wish I could get my mind in order enough to be back on a regular basis, but it may still be a bit off and on. Bear with me if you would. I just wanted to come back today, as a fresh start in June to let you know CiaoMarezy was still alive. 

We will have four children under the age of three when our little "Button" comes. Baby four has been affectionately named "Button" by the boys. The scary thing. It's sticking. But there is no way we are going with a celebrity-like name. Apple, North, Button... Nope. We'll share soon whether we are having a boy or a girl, but I have a feeling Button will remain it's name for a while.

I really can't wrap my mind around the fact that I will have four such young children. Four kids doesn't scare me at all, it's the fact that our two oldest will not even have celebrated their third birthday yet! A few people have said, "Oh, three is a lot harder than four! You'll be fine." But my oldest isn't going to be a helpful seven year old and the one under isn't five. I'll have two soon-to-be three year olds, an almost one year old and a newborn. If any of you have littles so young and close in age, I welcome any tips! 

While this is going to be one wild ride, we are so excited to add to our family! Hopefully sooner than later I will figure out this crazy life and get back on the blogging schedule! I certainly miss it!

Friday, November 14, 2014

five things fridays: drink it up!

This week's Five Things Friday is all about the drinks. I'm not a real wine drinker, but I just love this wine holder. There was a movie, and I am totally drawing a blank on the name, that had these stacked in a fabulous design. If only I had the counter space! I'd love even a few of these set up in a great honeycomb design. 
And again, if it weren't for the lack of counter space, this would have a home in our kitchen. I'm still debating if I can pull it off! I'd love to have our favorite mugs out at a little drink station.
Speaking of drink stations. If you don't have the counter space, but you have room to put a little cart, isn't this a fabulous idea?! I wish I had room for either, but we don't!

My Hubs is a big coffee nerd these days. He's all about the local spots. He has his fave, but he loves to try new places. I heard about a new place in the city and he checked it out. It's brand new so they aren't totally done designing, but isn't it fabulous looking?

pc: The Hubs // insta

He came home and told me all about it. While I'm not a black coffee drinker I definitely want to check this place out! And they carry these cute little cups! I love the clear glass rather than a normal mug that you can't see through. And the cork is pretty neat too. You can customize the cups on their website with all sorts of colors and sizes! Take a look!
Do you have a favorite drink of choice? Or favorite drink accessories?