Our Guest Room

One of my favorite rooms in our home is the guest room. It’s not “perfect” or elaborately decorated (we still need to get a headboard), but I love how much natural light shines in and how most of the pieces in the room have sentimental value; what I love most, though, is when it’s occupied by our friends and family! The room has been in use since Lively was born a few weeks ago, and I feel so fortunate to have such generous and supportive loved ones in our lives!

Our moms took turns staying with us the two weeks after Lively was born. It was unbelievably helpful having them here to share their wisdom/experience, their delicious cooking, and keeping Lively and I company during the day. This past week, my sister spent her fall break with us. We had a great time watching countless hours of Gilmore Girls, walking at the park, and treating each other to pedicures!

Below are a few pictures of our guest room:

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This quilt was a wedding gift from one of Duncan’s aunts. We love how cozy it is and the personal touch it adds to our guest room!

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I love the big windows, as well as this beautiful scene Duncan’s grandma (Nanny) painted.

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This painting Nanny created has so much sentimental value, and I love that it’s hanging in a place where all of our visitors get to see.

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Duncan made this map for me as a Christmas gift while we were dating. We use different colored pins to signify where each of us have travelled, as well as where we’ve gone together. I can’t wait to see more of the world together (medical school kind of puts our traveling dreams on pause).

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Always and forever,

Alex

 

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Branson with our Baby

This past weekend was our first time taking Lively Mae to Branson. It was surreal bringing her to the homes we grew up in and the bed & breakfast my family has owned my entire life! Lively was able to meet more of our cousins, aunts, uncles, and grandparents, as well as spend more quality time with our siblings and parents.

Road trips with a baby are definitely a little different… longer & louder… our normally 4 hour car-ride turned into more like 6, due to a nice stop for feeding and a diaper change… But I still would way prefer having our darling daughter along for the ride with us! She is the perfect addition to our little family, and we can’t get enough of her!

Cannon also loves visiting our family and their dogs in Branson. It was a special treat for him, since he hasn’t had as much of our undivided attention since Lively has been born. He’s been so good with her, though, and it will be fun to watch them grow up together and see them interact more as Lively gets a little older.

Here are some pictures from our weekend getaway to Branson!

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Lively’s first time at the Bradford Inn (my family’s bed & breakfast).

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One of our many attempts at a family photo.

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A successful one!

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Spending some time with my cousin, Carissa, and her daughter at the Carley wedding at Sycamore Creek Ranch. Her daughter, Finley, is only 5 months older than Lively, so we’re excited for them to grow up together!

 

Always & forever,

Alex

The Best Change

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It’s amazing how quickly and drastically your world changes when you become a parent… in the best way! I guess you technically become a parent when you become pregnant, but it didn’t really hit me until I saw our beautiful daughter for the first time. The instant love I felt for our baby took my breath away.

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The last couple of months leading up to Lively’s arrival were a big transition, with moving to a new city and Duncan beginning his journey through medical school. We knew we wanted me to be able to stay home with Lively Mae once she was born, so that left a couple of months leading up to her arrival for quite a bit of free time. It was totally different from the fast-paced lifestyle we lived before, and for the first time in a long time I had to be intentional about finding things to fill my time and pursuing new friendships; that being said, I cleaned the house pretty much constantly, so it was nearly spotless (it was definitely a tangible way for me to feel like I was accomplishing something). I walked every morning with Cannon and a friend and her dog, and other than that, I really didn’t have set plans most days; about once a week I’d have a doctor’s appointment, but that was basically the extent of what I had to do.

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As much as I enjoyed those couple months of rest and being able to get settled into our new home, it made me even more excited for our baby’s arrival. And now that she’s here, my life has changed all over again! I love that my days revolve around taking care of our precious Lively. Even though it’s challenging (I’m sore; I don’t get much sleep, because she wakes up multiple times at night to eat, and even when she’s not awake I check constantly to make sure she’s still breathing… I think I’m a little paranoid since she’s our first; learning how to feed her isn’t as easy as it seems and is a little painful at first), I wouldn’t change a thing! Nothing compares to the sweet moments when she looks up into my eyes or wraps her tiny fingers around mine. I cherish how happy she is in the mornings and the cute cooing sounds she makes.

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Our lives are changing once again, but it is the best change I could imagine. I’m blown away by my husband; he goes to his classes all day (which is hard enough in itself), then comes home and is so intentional with Lively Mae and me. The three of us snuggle up on the couch, while he holds her and talks to me about my day and his. He studies hard, but takes breaks to feed her a bottle in the evening and just spend time with her. He prays over her each night, and I know without a doubt he cherishes this time and our daughter the same way I do. The love we have for our daughter is something we’ve never felt before, and I now have a better idea of what people mean when they say God’s love for you is revealed in a whole new way when you have a child.img_0865

The house isn’t nearly as clean and there are always things left on my to-do list at the end of the day, but I would never want it any different. I would a million times rather have my day filled with baby snuggles and prayers for our Lively (and a fair share of dirty diapers, spit up, and baby cries). We are so grateful to our Heavenly Father and all of the amazing people He’s placed in our lives who support us, encourage us, and who love our daughter. A special thank-you to our moms who took turns coming to stay with us the past two weeks and helped with everything; they’ve made the transition so much smoother! More pictures of our girl and her birth story to come soon!

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Always and forever,

Alex