January 2014

Happy New Year!!! Florida with my family. Road trip from Boston to Montreal, Canada. Kids’ shenanigans. Music class on Fridays with my girls.

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December 2013

So many sweet memories. Cutting down our tree at Smolak Farms in Andover, MA. Chris signing his contract with Piedmont (whoop! whoop!!) Christmas playdates. The Polar Express Event in Conway, NH (this place deserves it’s own post. what a magical night!!!! hot chocolate on the train, elves singing, christmas caroling, the santa, kids in awe! the whole town waving and participating in this event), Boston Pops Christmas Spectacular, in Memphis celebrating Jesus’ birthday with our families! The best Christmas.

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October/November 2013

These months are like a blur to me. A month after Vivi was born, Chris took his cardiology boards (this is a big deal). When he was home from his already crazy schedule, he was studying. On top of studying he was flying around interviewing for jobs. I didn’t sleep. It seemed like  one long day on repeat. There were lots of highs and lows. Thankfully we’ve all survived and are finally starting to feel normal (writing this post in april. ha!). Praise the Lord, Chris accepted an offer with Piedmont Heart Institute and it’s his dream job doing interventional and structural heart procedures! We are beyond excited to be closer to family and so very proud of him. This slideshow is of our first sweet months with Vivi, Red Sox world series!, Vermont trip, Atlanta visit, Thanksgiving with friends and Chris’s birthday.

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Poppy turned 2!!!


 October 27

I blinked and my beloved little girl Penelope Olivia turned two. She is a head strong, determined, kind, funny, independent little girl. She wants to do things on her own. She puts her socks and shoes on by herself. Tells me, “I do it!”. She loves climbing on things, being outside, dancing with her daddy and playing with her brother. She loves eating cereal, pasta, and fruit. (Meats and veggies we are still working on) But she would rather starve than eat something she doesn’t like. Trust me, she goes to bed on an empty stomach quite frequently. But in the last month it has gotten better. She loves to play dress up! Nearly every day we are wearing a princess dress, tutu and some jewelry. She notices little details and points out peoples jewelry and purses and says “I like that!”. She loves going to school. She is the apple of our eye. No surprise, she got spoiled on her birthday. We got her a scooter like her brother.


 This was her face when she saw it. priceless. She also got a perfect little play kitchen from Nana and Papa.



We had turkey bacon and pancakes with whipped cream and M&M’s.




We then drove to Tougas Farms. The kids played on the playground and pet some animals.


 Our sweet Vivi was there too. We ran around through the orchards. Picked apples. Went through the pumpkin patch.


We drove back to the city.  Then went to one of our favorite restaurants in the North End. L’Osteria (Family style Italian food in Little Italy). She ate a huge plate of spaghetti.


 We picked up a ricotta pie (taste like cheesecake. amazing)  from Mike’s Pastry (best pastry shop in the city) and serenaded our princess.



can you tell I’m sleep deprived? those bags under my eyes could hold a lot of trash.



We also celebrated with her class. I made these smiley faced snacks. We can’t bring in cookies/cakes/doughnuts/anything fun. So we used our freshly picked apples and sunflower spread and mini marshmallows.


 Sebastian asked if he could read a book to Poppy’s class for her birthday. He read ‘Green Hat Blue Hat’ and ‘Moo Baa La La La’. I read her favorite Chick Chicka Boom Boom.





 Seriously, this girl is a firecracker. She keeps me on my toes at all times. I’m so privileged to be her mommy. We love you Poppy. You are adored by many. Happy birthday our precious, precious, beautiful girl!!!!

Vivienne Rose

September 20, 2013- Friday

music class with Poppy


September 21, 2013 -Saturday

Last date night at Louie Louie’s. I felt like I was going to explode. My parents babysat. We’re so thankful they were in town.


September 22, 2013 – Sunday

Good bye due date. Eating late night cereal from my built in table.


September 23, 2013 – Monday

I go to the OB for my check up and ultrasound. They were monitoring me because my fluids were low and baby was measuring small. They kept bringing up the inducement talk. I wanted to wait it out. I thought I was going to try natural labor this time around. Ha! Ha! HA! After ultrasound and fluid check, they said everything looked great. I then go to see my OB. While she checks me for dilation, my water breaks. I feel the warm liquid coming out and immediately smile and realize this baby will be here today! That was at 12:45. My parents pick me up and then we get kids from school. Chris meets me at our apartment around 1:30. Contractions start picking up. I mean really intense and fast. They stay at about 3 minutes apart. We take our last family of four photos.

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Everybody gives the belly kisses.



We decided to head to hospital a little after 2. My contractions are so intense, I just know when I get to the hospital they will tell me I’m 7 centimeters, this baby is ready to come out! Wrong. Check me and tell me I’m 4 centimeters. What?!?! How is this possible! I’m in so much pain. When I got to the hospital with Poppy I was 5 cm. This seems so much more intense and I’m only 4?!?!?! So I tell chris I need the epidural. I can’t handle the pain. Around 3:30 they start the epidural process. It was so hard to sit still. My contractions are one on top of the other with about a 30 second break in between. I’m hunched over during the contractions trying not to move for the epidural needle. They cant get it in. I’m miserable on so many levels. They stick me at least four times. I take a break from epidural process. I’m seriously writing in pain like nothing I’ve felt before. I tell the nurse I feel like I need to push. This baby is coming. They try one more time and finally get epidural/spinal in. The nurse checks me and what do you I’m 9.5 cm. It’s time to push. Literally three pushes and she was out. Vivienne Rose arrived fiercely at 4:22.


The shot I send everyone with my make up on and hair down like I just took a walk through the park.


She was 6 pounds 10 ounces. 18 inches long. She is perfect.


The big brother and big sister meeting the newest member of our clan. This was right before Sebastian tried to “help her take her belly button off”.


Poppy was a little intimidated by this small little human. She didn’t know what to do. She would just look at her like she was this very fragile, strange creature. Sebastian, on the other hand, couldn’t keep his hands off of her. From day 1, he has been smothering her with kisses and hugs, always asking to hold her.


My babies!!!!


Proud brother.


Lots of love from Grandma.


and Nonno.


She takes my breath away!



Nana and Papa love their granddaughter!!!


Septemeber 25, 2013

We walk home as a family of five (very clueless as to how crazy life is when you are outnumbered by your kids). It’s literally two blocks.


After coming home, I have crazy migraines and can’t stand up. Turns out all that poking from my useless epidural is making me leak spinal fluid. I have to go back to the hospital so they can go in and patch up the hole that is leaking fluid in my spine causing vertigo and migraines. My Vivi came fast and furiously. Even though her arrival was the opposite of the natural child birth I was going to have, we have a perfectly healthy wonderful baby. I couldn’t ask for anything more. I would do it all again right now to have this sweet one. She loves to nurse, sleep and smile. We are in love all over again. Sweet Vivi you are cherished. We are so glad you are here and are part of our family.

last months as a family of four…

Camping trip in White Mountains, New hampshire with friends. (had some great photos but can’t find them) Sebastian and Poppy loved eating s’mores. My belly got big and uncomfortable. Kids loved kissing my belly and talking to Vivi. Weekend trip to the Cape. Wellfleet Drive in. City Living. Trip to Vermont. Cheese tasting. Shelburne Farms. Poppy started preschool!!! I remember when Sebastian started he got his own rather lengthy post about it. First child. I love that we can hop in the car and be at a beautiful beach in 20 minutes. Sebastian joined a soccer league and Chris was a coach. Last photo is kids making a card for Vivi’s arrival.

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Next post… Our Sweet Vivienne Rose came into this world!!!!!


This post is kind of heartbreaking for me. I took a lot of pictures on my phone when we were in Europe. Somehow when we got home, I downloaded them and go back to my computer a few days later and 1.5 years worth of photos were gone. No idea where they went. Honestly, it bothered me so much, I stopped blogging. I still haven’t found them. Maybe they are in cyberspace, maybe they are hidden somewhere on my computer, I don’t know. My favorite photos from my Norway were on my phone. All of these photos were taken on our fancy camera. Ugh! Anyways, back to Norway. One of the most beautiful places I have ever been to and Chris and I have travelled all over the world. Norway in a nutshell. Bergen. Waterfalls. Sognefjords. Family Hiking. Jostedal Glacier National Park (hiking by myself 25 weeks pregnant wearing Poppy and chasing Vivi, thought I was gonna die but totally worth it) Chris hiked to the glacier. Norway “camping” beautiful cabin on the fjord. Stave Church. Lillehammer. Oslo (one of the craziest most expensive cities in the world). Nobel Peace Prize Museum. Viking Ship Museum. Delicious Oslo City Hall meal (thank you Rick Steve’s). Then back to Boston! Phew!

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