Monday, January 16, 2017

My advice for traveling with young kids.

There is no good advice and anyone who tells you they have some is lying.
Boys button down | A's outfit | A's bow

After a family vacation that involved 10-hours of flying time (give or take a strong tailwind) I feel like I got to know a lot about parents traveling with young toddlers.

You've got the laid back mom who just oozes cool. She's not easily frazzled, and usually the baby in her lap is well behaved. Oh and yeah, there is only the one baby so that may explain it.

You've got the mom who packed all the diapers in her checked-baggage gosh darn it, it's her first time flying and she's panicked. She embarrassingly approaches you asking if she can borrow a diaper. You give her five.

And then you've got the dad with the crying 2-year old who was not seated next to his wife on the airplane and he cannot handle the toddler tears. He is so frustrated that he stands up during taxi and screams at his wife to "come get this child." He has come unhinged, and the plane hasn't even taken off. Everyone stares.

Yes traveling with young kids is the ultimate adventure before the adventure and physically and emotionally exhausting. You can have all the snacks, all the iPads and pray to the all the airplane gods that you get a whole row to yourself and yet still, that little person decides to scream and buck and you're screwed.

But then, as you are cursing yourself for ever thinking this was a good idea in the first place, you arrive at your destination. You see your children see things for the first time. You see them laughing and playing together (or let's be honest pull hair and punch faces) and as you have new experiences and memories as a family it becomes worth it.

I felt like I really got to see my children's individual personalities this week. Life moves so fast with three young kids. It's a lot of activities, preparing to leave for activities, following schedules and cleaning the kitchen. One week with my sole job to just be and play with them was refreshing. Traveling with young kids reminded me to slow down and enjoy - not just survive - the chaos.

So my groundbreaking advice? Haha and good luck.

And just do it.
Add caption

Sunday, January 1, 2017

Welcome 2017, from the trenches.

Happy New Year friends!
Let's dish on 2016. How was it for you? What adjectives would you use to describe your year?

For me 2016 was a whirlwind and a blur. It was survival mode with a new baby, a 1-year old and a 3-year old. It was a gigantic exhale at the end of every day when all three were asleep. It was collapsing into my bed minutes afterwards. It was little sleep, lots of coffee, a glass of chardonnay at 5PM and no later, and busy-ness. Free-time was spent with my husband, nap-time was spent exercising in my bedroom, me-time was spent asleep in bed by 8pm.

I've been deep in the mom-trenches. I've learned that when you're in the trenches you tend to get smaller and smaller, a little less you, and a lot more them. The kids (1-2-3), the spouse, and the damn dogs that keep wanting to go out.
2016 has also been one of the sweetest years of my life. Today I was washing dishes and I felt my little lady tug on my pant leg to stand. It made me pause. I hope I never forget what this moment and this time in my life feels like. Busy? Sure. But needed, sweet and fleeting.
The mom-trenches; that's where I've been. And though I'm digging out a bit, I imagine I'll be here for the next few years. Anyone with me?

Now let's chat 2017.

You ever watch a race - and there's always that one person in the back flailing their arms and trying desperately to catch up? They cross the finish line eventually, but it ain't pretty and it's dead last. Seen those guys? That was me in 2016.

This year, so help me Lord and blog-readers, I will be less reactive. I will be less flailing, in fact I may soon be the one waving from the front. I will be so on top of things you won't even recognize me.

So to 2017...I see you. I am on you like white on rice and I assure you, you are not ready for me. (Drops the mic). (Picks it back up because there are small choking parts).

Wishing all of you, especially those with me in the trenches, a very happy start to the New Year.

Let's be friends! Follow me on IG.

Thursday, August 20, 2015

It's a...

It's a girl, y'all!

As you can imagine, we are totally shocked and totally over the moon.

After having two of the same gender I truly, honestly just expected another boy. I had no reason to think otherwise- I've had the same type of pregnancy for all three kids, in fact I felt the worst when pregnant with Benjamin (which the old wives tales tell you means it's a girl, but now that I know him I know the real reason). And, odds said so anyhow!

However, there was one small part of me that thought that maybe it was a girl.

Why you may ask? Because my oldest son Cooper told me so, that same day he told me I had a baby in my belly. Remember that strange part of the story? During that conversation he told me "Mom, you have a baby in your belly. Like Ben, but it's a girl. We won't get to meet her for awhile, but we will when she's ready to come out." And he didn't stop there. He called her "Alex" and anytime we would read books where he saw a baby girl, he would say, "Look mom! A baby like Alex in your tummy!" Again, this all happened before we even knew we were expecting.

And since we are on the subject, can we talk about Cooper for a second? This child is such a blessing to our family. He is unbelievably kind, caring and loving. There is not one ounce of meanness in him and I'm incredibly proud of who he is becoming. So, of course an angel gave him a heads up to this baby! What perfect planning that he was the steward of this wonderful news, even though I didn't believe him at the time.

In closing, I will obviously need all your favorite shops for bows and dresses and any other information I need to know about where to get her the cutest clothing items of all times. Because that's all I've been doing, shopping for her.

*All photos courtesy of Hillary Wheat Photography.
Keep in touch! Follow along on Happy Haven Blog's Facebook page.

Friday, July 24, 2015

Party of...FIVE!

About four months ago, out of the blue, Cooper told me that I had a baby in my belly. HYSTERICAL, right? Three year olds say the craziest things! 

Cooper was right.

And now that I've caught my breath again, I can now share the news here on the blog:
 It's happening y'all. 

We are expecting our third kiddo this winter, Christmas Eve, to be exact. Yes, yes, that is my actual due date- December 24th, 2015. And yes, Cooper has demonstrated either psychic abilities or a lucky guess, which one I'm not sure. If you're trying to do the math here, I am 18-weeks along. YES, further along than most that share their news but see aforementioned about catching breath.

So let me answer your questions: was this planned?
Nope. But no one worry, we wanted three children eventually. So, now works great!

Will you find out what you are having?
Yup!  But let's be real, it's a boy.

How far apart will the baby and Ben be?
17-months. Barely.

So as you can see, it's about to get busy around here. Scratch that, busier

With the new addition on the way and entering life of three children under three, I know that blogging will take an even further backseat than it already has. First of all, I find it hard to allot the time to sit down and write. Second (and truth be told), where I want to spend my time has changed. I plan to keep the Happy Haven Blog name active and post from time to time. Maybe one day, when the kids are slightly older and out of the "need-you-at-every-second" stage, I will consistently fire it back up; but I imagine when that happens, the blog will be less of a mommy-blog, and more of a home blog- decorating and so forth.

In the meantime you can catch our family updates on Instagram and I will continue to guest blog over at Denver Metro Moms Blog and Her View From Home.

We found out what we are having just this week, I'll share soon! Crazy town over here, party of FIVE!

Lots of love, friends!