Food for my mama soul.

beach pregnancy maxwell maggie whitley

We found ourselves at the beach on Sunday, totally planning on walking alongside it (and maybe hoping to get this baby low low low). Maxwell clearly had other plans because it didn’t take long and he was tugging at the straps on the stroller to get out. This sweet boy loves getting his feet wet, and in an instant memories of our weekly adventures to the beach over the summer flooded my heart. I grabbed his hand and together we walked down to the waters edge to play.

Zack captured this moment of me with both my babies, and when I saw it on my phone almost a day later I literally gasped. This is such a precious photo to me. I’m beginning to see mamahood as a marathon: we have to pace ourselves wisely, from the early morning hours, so we can last the entire day. It’s a hard, magnificent race.

Now that Maxwell is a toddler and he’s talking to us, sharing what he needs and pointing out all that he sees, it’s so very clear to me that love is at the forefront of his mind — all day, every day. He doesn’t ever see me as tired or repetitive or structured or weary, all feelings mamas have throughout the day. Instead, he sees me as his friend, his teacher, and his encourager. Having this moment at the beach with my babies captured is beyond precious — it’s life giving for my mama soul.

Preparing for a new chapter of mamahood…

maxwell tiger maggie whitley

The days where it’s just Max and I at home are dwindling fast. We’re down to about 35 days; even typing that brings an overwhelming rush of emotions.

I remember so so clearly the day we brought Maxwell home from the hospital, the day Zack went back to work, the day our families went back to Michigan. Each day was a stepping stone towards it being just Max and I at home together (with Bauer, of course!). And we’ve done so well, just Max and I :)

Most of our day is spent doing something together. He’ll play by himself for a few minutes, then he’s off to find me. He’s constantly curious to know what I’m doing, and he absolutely loves when we do something together.

The heirloom baby cradle is set up and tucked into a corner of the nursery, waiting to be filled with weight. Once Baby #2 is born we’ll bring it to the living room next to our bed, but for now it’s across from Max’s crib in the nursery.

But even though I do most of the talking about the baby joining our family “very soon”, it’s almost like Max can feel it, too — in his own 18-month-old way. He wants to be held multiple times each hour, which I can’t do as often (per my OB). Instead, we snuggle and read together on the couch during the day and at night for bedtime lullabies.

Just like when he nursed for the last time and I cried knowing that chapter was over, Max will be a big brother soon and once again we’ll be turning another page in our book. These are all healthy (but hard) changes, definitely something to cherish as life continues to circle and the pages continue to turn.

Maxwell may not be “a baby” anymore, but he’ll always be my baby. And watching him grow from baby to little boy is seriously so amazing. Life is transforming before my eyes, in more ways than one.

Becoming a mama has revised me into the richest and fullest version of my self.

Mamahood is my best story to tell, but also my most untold story, and it is perfect imperfection.

Wonderful things.

baby bump maxwell maggie whitley

How about a little TGIF? ;) I remember when that was “the” Friday night TV lineup. And you can bet I was gathered in the family room with my brother, sipping a homemade chocolate malt (thanks mom!) and so wishing I also had a Trapper Keeper. I didn’t dream of doing anything else. I loved the family time and ease of another weekend within reach. And now, even 15 years later, I still enjoy Fridays for the very same reason… just with a little less TV. We haven’t owned a TV in years, but that’s a topic for another blog post.

In celebration of it being Friday I thought I would share some a few wonderful things going on right now…

* We’d been in a long period of “just wait”, and this expanded over many, many areas of our lives. I am definitely seeing the blessings that come with waiting come to fruition and friends, it’s so very encouraging. Many things are falling into place for our family and I’m so grateful we had the patience to hold on and continue the wait.

* I bought two tiny newborn nightgowns for baby #2 and I just might wash them up and tuck one under my pillow at night. I’m so very excited for baby girl or baby boy to arrive. The countdown is on: 10 weeks to go!

* Maxwell loves to read and has been coming to me with a book in hand, ready to sit in my lap. It’s one of my favorite activities right now.

* Strawberries. Sweet strawberries that I can’t stop eating :)

* I’ve got a tonnnnnn of energy right now so I’ve been working feverishly on my baby to-do list. We’re making great progress, which is super exciting. But I have to say, I’ve been on the hunt for a dresser (Craigslist) for the kids to share and two times now we’ve been second in line, and then BAM! it sells to someone else. Maybe this weekend will be our lucky weekend?

* Yesterday we had a routine ultrasound and little baby actually smiled at us… oh my word, and we caught it on (digital) film! That’s is my new favorite photo.

 

I feel so blessed over the answered prayers we’ve had, the increase in energy I’ve felt, the family that surrounds me. I hope you have a lovely weekend and can take a few minutes to reflect of a few of your own wonderful things :)

PS. Maxwell’s moccasins are c/o Freshly Picked (currently on sale!); heart foil maternity top is c/o Asos (also on sale!), bermuda maternity shorts are Old Navy (wow, these are on sale too!).

My reflection in the mirror.

pregnancy bump maxwell maggie whitley

Since becoming a mama I’ve come to notice my reflection in mirrors when I walk past with Maxwell in my arms. It’s been a sweet way to see myself with him, but from a different perspective. The other day I was inside a fancy baby boutique with my brother (yahoo, he’s visiting all week from Michigan!), and as we were wandering the store I caught my reflection in the mirror. But this time I couldn’t help but notice both of my babies. At 24 weeks pregnant my body is becoming more and more fulfilled with a second life. It’s a magical feeling; a wonderful view. I’m so, so glad I stopped to capture this little moment in time.

PS. my brother’s surprise visit last summer — he’s making a good habit of surprising me, which I LOVE!