Thursday, July 28, 2016

4 years with The Hargroves

As I sit down to reflect on another year that has rooted deep into the ground underneath our small and budding marriage I find myself needing to write down who Kaleb has been this past year. He has stood in a place that I imagine no spouse wants to stand in. He stood in as a rock while I processed so much this year. A new baby and losing my dad all within a span of months was difficult to say the least but Kaleb stood there. He stood up for our marriage and for my heart. He never wavered and he stood firm in our promise when I could have counted on one hand how many times I deserved it. I guess we found out this past year that I close up with a major loss in my life. It's not something we could have known unfortunately. It was just something we had to watch unfold and find out where my heart would go. I've always felt very undeserving of Kaleb's love for me but this year just capitalized on that. Kaleb sees me and knows me like no other person ever could. He brings out a stillness in me that a lot of the time doesn't feel possible but beautifully enough he also embraces my fire that tends to rise up so often. While we were driving back from San Angelo this past weekend, discussing life as we tend to do when we spend hours on the road together he held my stare and said, "You really are my best friend, Breanna." My stomach sank and tears welled not because that's surprising but because after 4 years, 2 babies, and so many hard things you forget to tell each other stuff like that. He told me something on that trip that I never really thought about before. He told me after 4 years of marriage that he finally understands what being equally yoked means. Not just in faith but in parenting and teaching and in so many other areas we see eye to eye more than I realized was even necessary years ago when we said "I do." He has never had to prove his love for me but he still does over and over again because he wants to, not because he needs to.

This was a hard year together, that I'm sure of. We endured and we pushed through and the best part of it all is we did it together. From laughing till our sides hurt on the couch to standing still and being silent as I felt all the things at once like I tend to do we have had another great year together. I don't think a great year together has to be defined in just happy times. It's in the seasons of growth that I feel like we've had our best moments together. Growing is a trying act but it's so worth it in the end. Suddenly we are 4 years into this and I feel like it's been a lifetime already. I know you feel like there's no way this is possible but you have taught me and still do teach me so many things. You teach me to be kind and hold my tongue, you have showed me what graceful parenting looks like, and though I'm not good at it yet you are constantly teaching me how to have patience. I love that your dreams are spilling over in your heart. You have a lot of them and I must admit that sometimes they feel out of reach or impossible. The way your soul sparks when you talk about filmmaking and touching the hearts of people around you lets me know that with your drive nothing is out of reach. I love discovering new things with you. I love watching ideas unfold between us as we figure out new things we are passionate about as well as new fires lit for things we have always longed for. I know this year will bring so much for us. I can't wait to find out what exactly it is. You are the best husband. This is not a phrase I take lightly. I say it because it's the honest truth and quite simply it must be said. The Lord has given me the biggest blessing in this marriage-you. I love you, Kaleb James. 

Tuesday, July 12, 2016

Happy third birthday, Elijah!

I have a three year old! This is crazy. Mostly because he's my OLDEST. How weird is that? I have an oldest and a youngest now. My oldest, my first born, he turned three. At three years old Elijah-

  • Semi potty trained (is that a thing?)
  • Wears size 3T in clothing and size 7 in kids shoes
  • Talks ALL the time. He's never quiet.
  • Favorite foods-PBJ (of course), fries, all fruit, kefir (drink), burritos, pasta
  • Favorite TV show-Animal Mechanicals and Dino Train
  • Loves to play on his LeapPad
  • Loves to play at the park
  • LOVES to swim and is a lot better now that he has had a few swim lessons
  • Very obsessed with Star Horse (Star Wars) even though he's never actually watched it
  • Loves anything dinosaur and even pretends he is a dinosaur. He has a great T-Rex impression
  • Favorite phrases-"I'm hungry", "Sister is SOOO cute", and "Mmm. No, thanks."
  • He's a sponge. Literally he soaks up everything around him all the time
  • Has his first cavity (womp, womp)
  • Sleeps about 11-12 hours at night
  • Does not nap. He basically gave those up last year
  • Loves the church nursery. He's always excited to play and see his friends
  • Also, he has been nicknamed "The Runner" at church for obvious reasons-he escapes!
  • Drums like his daddy. Seriously, he keeps beat really well for a three year old, it's kind of shocking
  • Sings all day, everyday like his mama

You are so big, son. You seem to grow in leaps and bounds lately and I can hardly get used to it before you're on to growing and developing more. This has been a tough year for you. We moved cities and had a baby! While you aren't really the nicest big brother yet we do know without a doubt that you love your sister. Watching the way you interact with her can be hard sometimes because you're a very rough little boy but I can see you trying your hardest to be as gentle as possible. It's tough, I'm sure, trying to be so gentle with this tiny human when you're so use to playing rough with daddy. You're doing great, bud! We love you so much Elijah! This season of correction and teaching is not meant to make life harder on you but to do just that-teach you. I love when you come into the kitchen and start helping me put away the clean dishes without me even asking or when you run around grabbing burp rags or diapers for sister because you simply want to be helpful. You have a kind and generous heart. You're a daddy's boy more and more lately and it warms my heart because I know your daddy wants to be your best friend as you grow up. I can't wait to watch your personality grow even more this next year as we learn together about your sweet heart. I love you, Rijah-Roo!

Abigail:5 months

For some reason month 4 went by very fast because month 5 seemed to sneak up on us. Here we go!
At 5 months-

  • Wearing size 3 diapers
  • Wearing 3-6m/6m clothes
  • Moved up to the medium size in her cloth diapers
  • Recently started nursing much more/being more fussy/chewing/drooling=TEETHING
  • 30-45 minutes naps which basically means chick doesn't nap
  • Sleeps in 2-3 hour stretches at night/co sleeps with us
  • Won't sleep in her crib anymore
  • Still swaddled but it's starting to look like that won't be for much longer
  • Has started seeing the chiropractor a few times a week for Torticollis and her flat head
  • Loves tummy time a lot more now
  • Pushes up onto her hands
  • Turns her head in the direction of any noise 
  • Mostly just wants to be with mama
  • Still doesn't laugh very much but smiles all the time
  • Sits up on her own with a boppy behind her for when she leans too far over and falls
  • Starting to like different toys
  • Still hates her carseat
  • Still has cradle cap
  • Can put her paci in her mouth by herself
  • LOVES her Sophie Giraffe and Captain Calamari (one of Elijah's old baby toys)

To expand more on her head-Torticollis is basically when a baby favors one side of her neck more than the other. Abigail leans her head to the left more than anything but it isn't severe at all. However, it has created a flat spot on the back of her head because she would refuse to do tummy time so she laid down a lot on her back. Our chiropractor has been so great and told us her torticollis will be a fairly easy fix as long as do stretches with her daily and help her stretch her neck more. The flat spot on the other hand will take a little more time because he has to sort of reshape her head. She hates these chiro visits but they're whats keeping us from having to buy her a helmet. Me and Kaleb are getting very excited for next month as she will start solids! We did BLW (Baby-Led Weaning) with Elijah and it was so much fun! We plan on doing that with Abigail as well. The 6-9 month stage is always my favorite! I'm excited to see her develop more and watch her learn to be mobile. Though her sleep is terrible right now we are all having so much fun with her. She's a blast!

Friday, June 10, 2016

Abigail:4 months

She is four months old! That sweet princess of ours. At four months old she is-

  • 13lbs 12oz
  • 24.5 in
  • going through the four month sleep regression
  • Sleeping in her crib for naps which currently only lasts about 30-45 minutes but cosleeping with us still at night and sleeps in 3 hour stretches usually
  • Nurses all the time still (block feeding)
  • Trying desperately to sit up on her own
  • TEETHING. I tried to kid myself and say that she wasn't but she is a fussy biter and Copaiba oil makes her feel better so yes, she is teething.
  • Doing turns when she's laid down but not rolling over both ways yet, still only from tummy to back
  • Found her feet and loves to pull them toward her
  • Still loves to be (double) swaddled
  • Still hates her car seat
  • Loves her wubby and Sophie Giraffe
  • Sits in her bumbo for about 10 minutes a day
  • Drools and chews on everything
  • Laughed for the first time about a week ago but hasn't really done it again since
  • Smiles all the time now especially at her family
  • LOVES to stare at her daddy and brother

The four month sleep regression....I hate it! I remember it being awful with Elijah so I should have figured it would be bad with Abigail as well. She's not sleeping very much which then in turn makes her super fussy and then the super fussiness makes her not sleep. It's a vicious cycle and we are all so ready for it to end. She's lucky she's so darn beautiful. We're all still very captivated by her, fussiness and all. We also noticed some things going on with her head. If you look at the above picture you can see her leaning it a bit to the left. She's been doing that for the last two months so her pediatrician suggested taking her to see a chiropractor which I've been wanting to do for her (and all of us really) for a while now. She also has a flat spot on the back of her head and cradle cap on the top. I have no idea why all of this stuff popped up recently but it's here and we have to deal with it. Poor girl. Other than regressing and having so many issues with her head she really is such a sweetie pie and a happy girl. She smiles so much now and slowly but surely she is starting to laugh more. We love our Abigail!

Thursday, June 2, 2016

Fatherless on Father's Day

Since having my own children Father's Day has been mostly about Kaleb. He's the father of my babies and the best one at that so I do my best to figure out how to make him feel special on the Father's Days he has experienced. I do that because he deserves it but I also do it because I know he misses his own dad. This fatherless thing isn't quite new to me. I've watched both of my favorite people, my husband and sister, lose their dads and really deal with it. I mean really, really deal with it. I've seen Kaleb break down in a hallway and Charlotte cry on the kitchen floor. I've seen it. I've witnessed it first hand but then my own dad passed away and I wondered why it hadn't hit me the way it did them. I felt mostly numb, I wrestled with my faith a bit, and I just simply missed him. I missed him incredibly much especially during the holidays with family around and definitely when Abigail was born and everyone visited us at the hospital. He wasn't there and it was hard. But I didn't imagine Father's Day being this hard. It's not even here and every time I see another Father's Day gift pop up on Instagram or Amazon telling me "Your dad would love this" I simply feel a bit sick.

I think I need to simply unplug that week from social media lest every dad post make me weep and make me long for my own dad who isn't here. I haven't done much breaking/melting down since he passed away but when I think about not being able to call my own dad on Father's Day, it hurts. It hurts in a new way that it hasn't hurt like this whole time hes been gone.

I just miss him.

I think for now it's ok to be sad.

Tuesday, May 10, 2016

Abigail:3 months!

She's 3 months! I feel like I'm updating this blog way too often with her monthly updates. Time needs to slow down. We haven't been to see her pediatrician in a while since her next wellness check isn't until 4 months so forgive me for not having her weight and height this time around. But at 3 months-

  • Nurses every 2 hours still during the day but has ramped up nursing more at night because of her developmental leap
  • Glands are overproducing so she drools, sweats, and stays congested a lot lately
  • Wearing size 1 diapers still
  • Wearing size 3m clothes and some of her 3m-6m outfits
  • Can no longer be froggy in the wrap when I wear her but sticks her legs out now
  • Still naps in her swing all the time and co sleeps with me and Kaleb at night
  • Still hates her carseat unfortunately
  • Can kick her legs up and tries to grab her feet
  • Grips her O Ball very well as well as my hair and Kaleb's beard
  • Sucks on her hands constantly
  • Wants to be facing out when she's being held, she loves to see the world
  • Hates the hiccups with a passion
  • Gets very excited when she sees my face, Kaleb's face, or Elijah's face
  • Gearing up to giggle but not quite there yet
  • Still coo's all the time and loves for you to talk to her

This past week we moved her crib into our room. It was originally in Elijah's room but he's still not a very good sleeper as it is so I figured a baby who still wakes through the night should probably be in our room for a while. We plan on co sleeping at night until she's at least only waking up once but we've started putting her in her crib every now and then for her evening naps. She does pretty good all things considered. This past weekend she did so well on our first family vacation. She snoozed by the pool and at the beach, she didn't fuss or cringe when I let her feet touch the water, and she overall just hung out while we did different things throughout the weekend. It's surely her demeanor but I'm positive it's also just me and Kaleb being seasoned parents. When we're calm, she's calm and honestly even when we're not she's still pretty calm. We've labeled her an angel baby and just look at her! You can totally see why. We love her. 

Thursday, April 14, 2016

Worth it

Last year when I turned 24 I posted a little photo of me, Kaleb, and Elijah with a caption that read-

"I feel like this is the first year that I can confidently say I know who I am. Some people find themselves in high school, some in college but I found myself this last year."

Two days later I miscarried our baby.

While I do believe I found myself that year I also believe that this past year I have found my faith. I've always had such an easy time choosing God. As soon as I was saved any hard time that came it was still so easy for me to choose the Lord. But then we lost a baby and then I lost my dad and somehow choosing God became not so easy. I wrote a post about my dad and shared how I almost walked away from it all. That moment of deciding all of this was still worth it changed my faith and challenged it really to keep growing. I really had to ask myself (and I still do) if I believe that right now God is still who I believe Him to be. Is He a good father? Yes. Is He mighty to save? Yes. Is He my comfort and peace even now? Yes. Is He my teacher and my bridegroom? Yes. Does He love me? YES! Do I love Him? A thousand times, YES! There were moments while I was in the middle of loss where I really thought the Lord didn't love me. But right now seeing that perfect little girl napping so soundly in her swing and that rambunctious, joyous toddler reading books on the floor I know that He does. Look at those two gifts He entrusted me with. Let alone the amazing gift of marrying Kaleb that He entrusted me with as well. All of these things, all of this sequence of events carried out goodness in the end because that's what He promised back in Romans 8. We know two things for sure: that there will be trouble in this life but that He is the giver of peace. He has overcome the world! While He didn't cause these things He can and He does weave them together and makes something incredibly beautiful out of them because He is Father who loves His children deeply. It doesn't always come in the form of an actual gift like a home or a child. Sometimes it comes in the form of things you've never experienced before like peace that you can't explain or value that you never realized you had before. That tough season or hard moment you find yourself in? Just hold tight to Elohim. There is something great coming for you.

"Yes, my soul, find rest in God; my hope comes from him. Truly he is my rock and my salvation; he is my fortress, I will not be shaken." Psalm 62:5-6