Well, I feel like summer just began, but sadly it is almost over. It started with a wonderful trip home to Indiana to celebrate my baby brothers beautiful wedding at the end of May. The wedding was absolutely beautiful and it was so awesome to see my brother marry the girl who has been through thick and thin with him for many years. I can't imagine him with anyone else and am so grateful to officially gain her as a sister-in-law!
We also celebrated Landen's 7th birthday while we were there. That little stinker has lucked out and has been back home for both of his birthdays since leaving Indiana. He had a Tsum Tsum cake and small family celebration with my husband's side of the family as well as a dual birthday party with his cousin Daniel who is a week younger than him. It's crazy that he is already 7 years old.
Nolan has had a fun summer as well. He has discovered a love for Legos and plays with them all the time. He loves making cars and Lego mini figures. A friend recently shared the world of Lego Mixels with him and now he wants to collect all of the Mixel sets.
We celebrated Nolans 5th birthday July 30th. He had gifts waiting that family had sent from Indiana. On his birthday, we facetimed with them as he opened his gifts. He was showered with Lego sets and books and has been in Lego heaven ever since.
Nolan will be starting preschool this fall. He is old enough for kindergarten by a couple weeks, but we aren't ready for him to go to kinder so young. We did the same with Landen, and saw that he enjoyed himself and was much more prepared which led to less stress for him since poor kindergartners have quite a lot expected of them these days. It will be great for him to have a year of preschool under his belt, and it will be nice to have a year gap between he and Landen through the years of school. Nolan is really excited about his new preschool and can not wait to begin!
Landen and Nolan have both mastered riding their bikes without training wheels this summer!!! The video is from day one, and since then they are whizzing around the back yard with no problem!
It is unclear how Gavin feels about becoming a big brother. He does talk about it and joke about it, but he certainly does not know or understand what is to come. He really hasn't been around any tiny babies, so once this little guy arrives, I think Gavin's world is going to be rocked!
Brian and I celebrated our 10 year wedding anniversary at the beginning of July! I can not believe it has been 10 years already. We had a friend watch the boys and we went out to a fondue restaurant in Livermore. We had never been to one, and it was a very fun experience. It will probably be the last date night before baby!
Something that can not go unmentioned is Brian published a first author PRL this summer! ( (PRL) is the world’s premier physics letter journal. It publishes short, high quality reports of significant and notable results in the full arc of fundamental and interdisciplinary physics research. PRL provides readers with the most influential developments and transformative ideas in physics with the goal of . We are the most cited physics journal — every two minutes someone cites a PRL. Authors gain high visibility, rapid publication, and broad dissemination of their work.) This was a paper containing information about experiments he completed during his time at Notre Dame. He worked very hard on this paper going back and forth with others that had worked on these experiments with him, so it was great that after all the hard work it was accepted and published. Here is a link to a write up about it featured on the Lawrence Livermore National Lab website:
First stars in the universe left a unique signature
He is now working on another potential PRL about work he has completed since being at the lab as well as a more lengthy paper about his second research project at Notre Dame.
As for me, I am keeping up with the kids and housework the best I can during this last month of pregnancy. I have never had anything to complain about in previous pregnancies but am not one who really enjoys pregnancy at all to begin with. This time around, I have been uncomfortable from start to finish. I am beyond blessed, and grateful to be healthy and able to carry another pregnancy, but at this point, my body will be happy to have this baby out!!! We are beyond 37 weeks now, so this baby is welcome to join us on the outside anytime! I look forward to my mom-cation at the hospital. I told this to Brian and he looked at me like I was a little crazy, but I am serious. At least for me, the hard part is typically over very quickly after arriving. I usually deliver within 30 minutes of arrival, and as long as there are no complications, which I pray that there are none, for a 4th time mother, the rest of the stay is a welcomed get away. I get to lay in bed for a couple days and nurse a baby on demand. Total cake walk. The hard part is on Brian running back and forth between the other kids and the hospital. I know he will do just fine. I couldn't ask for a better second half. He is amazing!!
I am sad that summer has gone by so fast. I am one that enjoys having all my kids home. I don't count down to their return to school like some moms do. At least for now I still feel that way. They aren't mouthy, super smelly teenagers yet! What I do look forward to during the school year though is the structure of our day. When I have things scheduled and kids have places to be, I am a much more productive person. My moms of preschoolers group (MOPs) will start meeting again which I look very forward to. If it wasn't for MOPs, I would not have my small circle of friends that I have made since coming to California. MOPs is such a wonderful way for mothers that are at the same phase of child rearing to get together and have a moment to themselves a couple times a month. I have volunteered to be a table leader this year so I will have a small group of moms that I will help have some play dates with and keep conversation going when we are together at our meetings. I am looking very forward to it!!
Oh, and lastly, I mentioned in my last post that we were on the hunt for a new vehicle for our growing family, and we found one! We purchased a very well maintained 2010 VW Routan minivan. We love it! It fits all of us comfortably, and has all of the bells and whistles I was looking for. The kids love that it has dual DVD players in the rear seats! I have had to put a stop to watching videos every time we hop into the car, though. It was getting a little out of hand for tv time during every 10 min drive to the the grocery store.
I think that about wraps up our summer. I hope to be updating again soon with some pictures of the new baby! We can not wait for him to get here!!!