Au revoir 2022, Bonjour 2023!!!

Reflecting on 2022, it started out struggling with our HVAC situation and trying to manage life knowing we have a huge expense coming our way. Having to let go of our Nanny and put Aurelia in daycare.

In August we were hit again with my husband losing his job and security. We were challenged to figure out how we were going to manage to pay everything, still make life comfortable for the kids and have Kevin find another job. We made it through mostly unscathed.

We are ending 2022 being thankful for our savings being able to cover our unfortunate situation this year. Thankful for our friends and family being our support system while we navigate through life’s challenges. And thankful for Kevin finding an amazing job.

Here’s to welcoming in 2023 with open arms. Planning more time for family fun, friends and working on being a happier healthier self.

So much change

I have been so busy with the three kids. It’s definitely a lot to handle. The girls have been playing Soccer and Diana is in Cheer. That alone is enough to keep us busy. Not to mention navigating the blooming personalities and tantrums.

Growing up I was always told you would have a child who acts just like you. There are parts of them that I see myself in. And others I don’t. I grew up naive. Very naive. I know now…I am learning more each day of how naive I was….and how life truly is.

I used to honestly think that people will treat you the way you treat them. I used to think that if you are kind, helpful and do what needs to be done…one day all that will come back to you. I’m waiting. Growing up, I was the one cooking, cleaning, doing laundry and caring for everyone else. Not once did I stop to ask who was taking care of me. All in my 20’s, I took care of family and friends. Helped them buy their groceries, cars, tires.. watch their kids… whatever was needed. I lived at home with my parents to help when my mom got multiple terrifying diagnosis. I stayed the night in the hospital… Did meal preps. I entertained extended family who came to visit.

My 30’s, I started my own family. Again, cooking, cleaning, laundry. Taking care of everyone when they are sick…. Throwing up and hurt. Even when I am sick and physically unable to move, I make sure everyone is taken care of. As I navigate my last year in my 30’s I am afraid I never got to find me. Never got to be me. Only take care of others. Make sure they have what they want and need and as long as they were happy….. It was all I needed. Right? But is it? I can’t take time for myself because that feels selfish. And being selfish feels like I am neglecting my responsibilities. The guilt that washes over me is unreal.

We have been navigating life with one of us losing a job. It hasn’t been easy. I tend to worry a lot and feel an immense amount of concern. That’s my nature, to feel it is my responsibility to care for everyone. Giving them the time, space and resources they need. I take on everything else. The worry, the anger, the obligations.

I now know I did this to be liked, to get praise instead of punished. What I am realizing is when I don’t act this way…. No one likes me. I get told that they don’t know who this person is.

I am tired. Tired of always being the one. Always wishing for my turn to be taken care of only to realize that’s not real life. That’s in the movies…that’s not real. I wish I had realistic expectations for adult life growing up. Not expecting that my life would be perfect because I always helped others, volunteer to do more and take on responsibility that shouldn’t have been mine. How do you move on from that?!

Almost a year?!

Clark’s birthday is in about a week and a half. It is unbelievable to me that we are about to celebrate his 1st birthday.

He has been walking for about a month. He is saying Mama, Dada and Go. He babbles….who knows what secrets he is spilling. He loves eating… everything. Hasn’t really met a food he wasn’t fond of…. until Tuesday. We were planning on getting his first year photos done. But he fell and got a bruise on his forehead. We rescheduled. I had bought a smash cake for the photos. Didn’t want it to be wasted. I sliced it up to give the kids. Diana ate most of her slice. Aurelia had a bite or two and didn’t want anymore. Clark refused to touch or eat it. Only wanted the sprinkles. Do I get another for his photos? Get a different kind? Or scrap that idea altogether? I have 2 outfits for his photos….and the cake smash. If I omit the cake portion …will that be enough?

We had weekend plans, they got cancelled. We are hoping the weather warms up so we can enjoy the pool. Clark had his first time in the pool last weekend. He loved it. Didn’t want to be held. Wanted the freedom of swimming off. He is going to need constant attention in the pool. He thinks Titus water bowl is his own personal pool. Plays in it any chance he gets. Loves the tub too. Splashing and eating the tub foam toys.

9 months and my whining

Time is flying for sure. Our little guy is going to be 9 months on Monday. He is trying to walk. He has said his first word…over and over and over again. With both girls their first word was Mama….Clark is the only one to say Dada first. Not sure if Kevin is excited about it or not. Clark has 6 teeth! He wants to eat and chew everything. He has slowed down on his milk intake due to the teething. But I expect it will pickup again. He is typically a happy baby. Very much a stage 5 clinger to me. I don’t leave the house except to go grocery shopping and now to get our middle child from Daycare. Clark is used to me being around ALL the time.

With being home all the time, I am going a little stir crazy. I feel almost imprisoned. Not allowed to leave. I am feeling like I am failing in every aspect of my life. Not up to my Managers expectations at work. I am not able to clean and keep the entire house clean all day everyday. Keep up on the dishes and laundry. I cook, but more times than not someone isn’t happy with what I make. Yet no one offers suggestions as to what I should make. I feel like a broken record asking for help around the house and getting the kids to pickup after themselves. It goes in one ear and out the other. But the minute someone is looking for something I am expected to know where it is or find it. If I stay up late to clean up and get things done …someone isn’t happy…. If I say screw it and go to bed… someone isn’t happy and I have more to do the next day. I seriously am not enough for anyone. I can’t do enough to make anyone happy. If I don’t get up early enough I can’t count on getting a shower that day. I feel that I am losing myself in motherhood/wife/housekeeper. I do nothing for myself. I do nothing that I enjoy…and when I do…. everything is still waiting for me when I am done and it feels like a waste of time. Why bother doing something for me when all the cooking/cleaning and all other things are waiting to be done…. All that ‘relaxation’ immediately leaves my body and stress comes flooding back in.

I look forward to the weekends to catch up on cleaning or sleep and it feels like a joke. The weekend comes and goes and I am no better off than I was the week prior.

I know I am not the only one who feels like this. I just need to learn to suck it up and stop feeling like life is ever going to be fair. Some have it better than others. I need to learn to not be jealous of that. I need to learn to let go of what I thought life would be like as an adult. And learn to accept what is.

8 months old

Holy moly time is flying by. Our little man is 8 months old now. He has 3 teeth. Eats everything. He is like a puppy and cheese anything he can touch. If you are eating, you need to be sharing with him. He started crawling on all 4’s Jan 17th ish…. And not much longer started pulling himself up. He doesn’t want to be on the floor. He wants to be standing. He tries so hard….and falls hard too. Clark wants to walk. I have to get the toy out of the garage and clean it up. Poor babe thinks he is being left behind since he isn’t walking and everyone else is.

Clark 8 months old

I am still getting used to the decision that I cannot be a surrogate again. It was such an amazing experience and so fulfilling.

If anyone has questions about surrogacy, I would be more than happy to help answer them based on my experience alone.

7 Months old

Clark started to really crawl yesterday. He got better at it today. I am sure tomorrow he will be a master at it. He tries to pull himself up. He will be mastering that soon as well. He tries to talk and babble. It’s cute.

He has some separation anxiety. Mostly with me. If he even sees me and I am not coming to get him, he has a meltdown. It makes trying to get anything done difficult.

He has gotten better with sleeping. Goes down by 8:30 usually wakes around 1 am for milk and can typically make it until 6 before needing more milk. Unfortunately he has began needing more milk at night to get by. 😩 He has also been trying out those new chompers he has. Biting hurts a lot.

Any advice to get him to stop biting? It surprises me and I scream and say no bite as I rip my nip out of his mouth. Hopefully this phase doesn’t last too much longer. Ouch.


I don’t think a lot of people understand the commitment that goes into pumping. It takes time. My first pump of the day can be between 12-28 minutes. I breastfeed as often as I can. But during my work day, it’s pumping. I pump about every 3-4 hours. Every single day, weekends too. The only time I don’t is through the night. He breastfeeds then we go back to sleep.

In order to keep a healthy supply, I drink near if not more than a gallon a day. I have a cup of coffee in the morning, mostly water through out the day….maybe an iced tea or soda here and there. I am always thirsty and often hungry. If I don’t have my drink and snack while pumping it makes it feel like forever.

And I don’t go to bed before 10:30pm because I have to pump before bed. I put all the milk in a mason jar throughout the day. I make sure there is at least one bottle prepared in the fridge for him. Before I go to bed I measure out 5 oz, put it in a milk storage bag. I do that as many times as I can and freeze it. If it isn’t 5 oz, it goes in the fridge for the next bottle to be prepared. I freeze between 15-25 oz every day.

I have donated just under 1,500 ounces of breast milk. (this go round) I currently have about 425 oz frozen in our freezer. It consumes a lot of my day. I plan around it. I am not away from home for hours on end unless I bring my pump and have a place to store the milk. I have to ensure I have enough bottles prepped before I leave. It’s an insane amount of work. I can’t miss pumping sessions. I just don’t think most people know what it takes….and to do this long term.

Blood work

After having some version of gestational diabetes with Clark, I had been checking my numbers randomly. My fasting number still bounces around. My OB/GYN was a little concerned. I have to do the 2 hour glucose test. I was told to have my primary care do some blood work for the A1C. I did that Monday. Got the results back this morning. It is in the normal range, but on the higher end. Sounds like I am good for now and will likely have to get that checked regularly.

There were some other tests that were run. I don’t know what they measure…. But I can see one is high and one is low. I imagine that my Primary will go over the results and tell me if there is any reason to be concerned.

In the meantime, I have my OB office sending my records to Shady Grove to see if I could be approved for a second surrogacy if we choose to do so.

I have been stressed lately. With the younger two being watched at home, I often have to step in to handle a melt down or a tantrum. That also means that once I am off the clock from my full time job, I am clocked in for Mom duty. I don’t get 5,10, 30 minutes to myself. I don’t get 2 seconds to wind down. I go from one to the other. Most days it’s fine. I get a little behind with the house cleaning, laundry and dinner is often on the table later than I would like. But when Clark needs attention, a diaper change or to be fed….I need to tend to him. Same goes for Aurelia. She has been doing a lot better with potty training. It’s still a struggle. But she hasn’t had much in the way of accidents lately. Her little potty has moved to the bathroom. She now has 2 in there. She chooses which one to use each time. She has even used the adult toilet a few times with my help so she doesn’t fall in.

Diana has been doing well with school. She is excited to point out her sight words. She will write down words that you spell out for her. She sometimes falls asleep early. Not having the nap and being busy and challenged on a daily basis is wearing on her and she needs the extra sleep. With that, some meltdowns happen too. Tonight, Clark was fussy. Probably more tired than anything. I was trying to prepare dinner. Kevin was frustrated with Clark and was getting more frustrated as time went on. I took him to change him. Long story short ….Diana and Kevin both seemed to have an attitude and had zero patience….leaving me to handle a screaming infant, an upset 6 year old and a compliant 3 year old. Poor Aurelia cleaned up the best she knew how while her sister ran to the basement to be with Daddy.

Nights like this make me wish I could just get a break. Leave to relax and not have to deal with attitude, tantrums and screaming tired infants. But being a mom…there are no breaks. Just try to breathe through, do the best I can and hope for a better day tomorrow. Perhaps one day I can be the kind of mom I imagined I would be.


What is going on?! Yesterday seemed like Monday on steroids. Our 3 year old who has been potty training for months had more accidents than a blind man driving. I cleaned up poop off a wall before I had a cup of coffee. Then pee in her bed, pee again later as well as poop in her panties. That alone had me ripping my hair out. I don’t know why this go round seems tougher to potty train. I am far more stressed. I am trying not to be. But how many times can we go through this before it makes sense to her?!

That paired with a plethora of other things going on with work. My work that has been frustrating as well as Kevin’s job too. Yesterday was just a trying day. We also have our oldest daughters birthday party on Saturday. I have so much to prep for her birthday party. I am feeling pretty stressed about it.

I am trying to just let things be and not feel like I need to control everything. But I know that I get a sense of peace when I have a plan, things are going according to my plan and I don’t feel rushed. Lately, that doesn’t seem to be the case. I have been diffusing calming oils to help me calm down and not stress so much. I know I need an outlet. I need to figure out time to get my punching bag up so I can use kickboxing as my outlet. I need a coffee date with a good friend who is willing to let me vent and not tell me how to “fix” everything. I need date nights with my husband.

Right now, I am going to clean up while I wait for ‘a million little things’ to air. Then head to bed and hope tomorrow brings something great to get me hopeful and productive again.

4 Months

Our baby boy had his 4 month appointment last week. He is 27″ long and 18 lbs 2.5 oz. Clark is in 9 month clothing. He is practicing sitting up and rolls around back to front and front to back.

Today our oldest turns 6! She feels so grown up that we have to serve her dinner on an Adult plate and she needs an Adult fork. We all need name tags at our seats so we know where to sit. 6 comes with a lot of rules.

Potty training our 3 year old feels like an impossible task. We have amazing days where there are no accidents and everything is great! But then we have our bad days, all kinds of accidents, bad attitudes and a lot of frustration. When is this going to be finally over?! I need a break!