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  • Welcome to Counting My Kisses!

    Counting My Kisses is all about finding that silver lining, even on our most frustrating days. It’s about cherishing my little girls and enjoying being married to my best friend. It’s about taking a minute to stop & remember what’s really important in life—and to discover that each & every experience gives us something to be thankful for.

    I’m a daughter, sister, friend, writer, and most importantly these days, a wife & mother. My life is full of fun chaotic moments, and this blog helps me to capture the laughter and love that fills our house every day.

    Thanks for joining me on this adventure!

Blessings

Hello, friends!

Happy belated Thanksgiving! And…happy December?! I’m still a little in shock as to how we’re exactly three weeks away from Christmas. How can that be?! Can’t wait to share all things festive with you this month, from decorations to holiday cards and so much more!

Many apologies for my absence on the blog last week. We were busy bees getting our house in tip-top shape for the holidays, out-of-town visitors + Baby J’s Baptism celebration.

 

But first things first~ Thanksgiving!

We had a lovely day with our little family and Grammy + Grampy. We kicked the morning off with chocolate waffles + the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade~  a beloved fave of both the Hubs + I from our childhoods. It was really special to share it with the girls this year~ Little O & H-Berry were totally into it. So fun! We also caught bits and pieces of the dog show + football, of course. Traditions were in full-swing!

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I may have purchased matching dresses for all three girls to wear on Thanksgiving. I begged for a photo + while it’s not the best shot they’ve ever taken, it’s at least good enough to mark the occasion {because I’m not sure they’ll go for matching dresses again!}. 

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Such sweeties!

Next up: seeing Frozen with Auntie Lala, Auntie Emily & Cousin M on Friday. 

blessings

The big girls were in heaven, and truth be told, so were the adults. Have you seen it?? Truly, it was pretty much the cutest movie ever. We’re all a little Frozen-obsessed over here at the moment…and I may or may not know every word to multiple songs already. For the kids, of course.

Saturday brought a very, very special occasion in our house: Baby J’s Baptism. We’ve been looking forward to this day for a long time + it was every bit as incredible as we had hoped it would be!

A few highlights: Baby J wore my family’s Christening gown as she was welcomed into the Church. I, along with my sisters + brother, wore this gown during my Baptism, and so did my mom, all seven of my mom’s siblings + many of their children. Baby J was the 27th child to be Baptized in this gown~ how amazing is that?!

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It was a beautiful ceremony, and our sweet girl handled it like a pro, only protesting slightly when the holy water was poured over her head. It was such a wonderful moment!

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The Hubs & I picked two very special people in our lives to be Baby J’s Godparents~ Uncle Chris + our dear friend Corinne. We couldn’t be more honored to have both of them as part of Baby J’s spiritual family! 

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Both sets of Baby J’s grandparents were there to celebrate with us, which meant the world to the Hubs + I. 

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And where are Little O + H-Berry, you ask?

They behaved well all through mass + during the ceremony~ and then decided they were completely OVER IT during photos. This is the best family shot we have~ I think their faces say it all, no?!

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A framer for sure {at least of the adults}!

 

It was the perfect evening to celebrate this sweet, amazing blessing of ours. Baby J has brought so much joy + love into our family, and just like her two older sisters~ she truly is a gift from God to the Hubs + I.  

Blessings

Ahh. She melts me, especially in her 60+-year-old Christening gown!

 

Our hearts are overflowing with gratitude over our many, many blessings. We’re heading into this Christmas season with smiles on our faces + joyful words on our lips! I’m hoping for extra patience + grace as we face these fun, busy days ahead with our three little elves.

Hope your Thanksgiving week was equally wonderful, friends!

Counting My Kisses: Looking around our full house on Saturday night, the Hubs + I were struck by all the love surrounding us. Family + friends sharing food + laughter while celebrating our youngest daughter’s Baptism~ we are so incredibly blessed! We’re thankful for a lovely Thanksgiving week + we’re looking forward beautiful holiday season ahead, with all the fun, joy + craziness it brings with little ones!

Siggie-21

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Amy

How sweet!

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What a beautiful family! Congrats on baby J’s baptism and enjoy preparing for the Holidays!

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Amy

Dear Amy,
Does http://www.blurbbookkisses.wordpress.com happen to be yours, or did someone plagiarize you? If someone did plagiarize you, let me know if there’s anything that I could do to help!

[Reply]

Amy

Oh my goodness Amy, thank you SO MUCH! It actually is mine~ I needed my blog to be in a different format & had to export it to that version of wordpress in order to make a printed Blurb book. I *totally* forgot about it & definitely need to take that down. Thank you so much, I will work on that this weekend! You are the sweetest!

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This is so, so wonderful- and the 27th kiddo to be baptized in that gown? How incredibly special is that?!

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Amy

How many times have you seen Frozen? I’ve gone with my girls FIVE times and don’t get bored. We are SERIOUSLY Frozen-obsessed at our house too.

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Enough

Confession: right now I’m having a hard time wrapping my brain around life.

 

As I write this, I have my littlest baby bear snuggled up against me. She smells like lavender from her nightly bath. I keep rubbing my cheek against the top of her head + her angel-soft wispy blonde hair. Her breaths are in sweet little puffs as she slowlyyyy relaxes into my chest. She’ll be sound asleep in a few minutes. I should give her a kiss + gently settle her into her bassinet for the night.

But I’m not ready yet.

I’ve been through this stage before. Twice, actually. It goes so fast. Too fast. And while it’s exhausting + all-consuming, the baby stage is amazing to me. Someone so little, so sweet, so fresh from God, placed into our care?! The magnitude of it takes my breath away. And it makes me want to snuggle this precious gift for just a little longer tonight while I try to capture what’s on my brain.

 

 

The question we get the most right now: how is life with three kids?

My short answer: it’s amazing. Incredible. So much fun. So very busy. And completely exhausting.

 

The baby has adjusted fantastically well to our loud, busy family. Sweet-tempered + super laid-back, Baby J rolls with just about everything {as long as it doesn’t interfere with feeding time}. She’s been sleeping through the night since six weeks old, which has officially earned her the title of Rockstar Baby in my book.

It’s the middle one that has really thrown us for a loop. I need to dedicate an entire post to the antics of H-Berry. Let’s just say life has been a major, major adjustment for H-Berry the past two months. Was it the arrival of Baby J, or was this Terrible Twos Showdown in the works all along? Not quite sure. But H-Berry hit her meltdown zone about two weeks after Baby J arrived + I feel like we’re finally~ maybe, possibly, please God~ emerging on the other side of the tunnel.

And our eldest? A total mini-mommy. She’s in love with the baby + also in love with *helping* H-Berry do everything {“Sissy will show you!!!” is heard roughly 494705 times in our house each day}. Little O is rocking school + loving anything art or writing related. She’s growing up right in front of our eyes as the leader of our trio of little girls.

 

It’s fun + funny + frustrating + wonderful.

I’m exhausted. But a happy exhausted. A fulfilled exhausted. I’m going to bed every night with the knowledge that I’m giving everything I have right now to my loves.

It’s a pretty incredible feeling~ most of the time.

But if I’m being honest: it’s sometimes overwhelming. Am I doing enough? Am I giving enough, guiding enough? There’s still the same amount of me, but now it’s spread between three wonderful little ones + an amazing husband. Am I enough for them? They all deserve the very best momma + wife. Sometimes I feel like I’m rocking it; other times I feel like I’m doing anything but.

 

One thing I know for sure: it’s a gift to be in this crazy, busy, wonderful season of my life. I’m enjoying the ride, even though I’m not always sure where things are going to end up.

But isn’t that what life is all about? 

enough

Maybe I don’t need to wrap my brain around it, after all.

Counting My Kisses: I’m incredibly thankful for the gift of being a momma + wife. Life is crazier than I ever could have imagined right now~ but it’s also even more fulfilling + rich with love than I ever could have dreamed. Here’s to a great weekend ahead with lots more memories to be made!

{Also: photo credit goes to Allison Shell Photography, who did a FABULOUS job on our fall photo shoot! I highly recommend her + can’t wait to share more of my faves in the weeks to come!}.

Have a great weekend, friends!

Siggie-21

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Laura

Thank you for such a real and open post. No matter what the struggles are in day to day life, it is a reminder that we all struggle from time to time with the same questions. Am i doing my best? Am i enough? Pretty amazing when you come out on the otherside in a few weeks and look back and can answer YES!! Yes, you are doing everything just right and excelling at the hardest job in the world!!

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What a beautiful picture. Even with three little ones, it seems you have everything under control! Have a great weekend with your family!

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Erin

You ARE ENOUGH =)! I’m sure Mimi has some insight for you on the adjustment for the middle daughter! Every kid is different…but she’s at the age Jack was when Roman came home. 2 year olds are so “needy”…she’s just trying to find her place! I had to make a conscious effort to read an extra book, rock a little longer, etc to try to make up for it. Give her another month or so and she’ll forget what life was like without J!(Atleast that’s my 2 cents!!) Keep up the good work!

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Oh man, you’ve totally captured everything that’s going through my head (and WILL be going through my head)! You make it look awesome. Keep it up, sister.

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I know exactly how you feel and it seems our lives are so parallel right now!! My first is definitely the helper, having problems with our 2-year-old middle, and our new baby is a rockstar, too! Maybe this is the norm?!?

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Hello, Monday! {hello, three snowy girls!}

Hello, friends!

And hello, Monday! Hope you had a fabulous weekend!

 

It feels like it has been FOREVER since I’ve done a Hello, Monday post~ so let’s dive right in, shall we?!

 

Hello…

snow?! It feels a little early…but it sure is pretty! 

hello monday 3 snowy girls

Hello…

to REALLY EXCITED little girls. Because snow! On the ground! Quick, let’s play in it before school just in case it melts! 

Hello monday 3 snowy girls 2

Hello…

to Baby J’s first snow. And adorable hat #42. 

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Hello…

to our three snowy girls! 

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Hello…

to tender moments that make me want to cry happy, thankful tears

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Hello…

to the gorgeousness of a sleeping baby. 

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And hello…

to a brand-new, busy week! On my agenda: finish Baby J’s thank you notes {almost doneeeeee!}, keep up with laundry  {cough cough PUT IT IN THE DRESSERS cough cough}, cook an actual non-freezer-meal dinner + start cleaning the house, room by room. We shall see how things stand by Friday. But it’s good to have goals, right?!

What are you saying hello to this week, friends? Have a GREAT one!

Counting My Kisses: After a really nice weekend full of family time, relaxing + getting life organized, I’m gearing up for a fun + busy week ahead. I’m SO looking forward to getting back into the swing of things on the blog too! I’m planning to post Little O, H-Berry  & Baby J updates this week~ can you guess which child is giving us a run for the money these days? {hint: it’s NOT the baby!}.

Have a great day + stay warm/dry/safe in the midst of this crazy fall weather we’re having!

Siggie-21

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LOVE the snow pix! And the hat! …okay, all of it. Good luck getting back in the swing. :)

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When I saw the picture of the snow, I just had to read your post and see what that was all about! I am assuming you live up North? The snow sure is pretty ( when it is untouched), but i’m not quite ready for that yet because then that means colder weather!!! Stay warm! ~M

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The 48-hour vacay

Hi friends!

Happy Friday!! Woo hooooo!

 

Hope you have all sorts of fun weekend plans on the schedule~ or better yet, nothing planned at all. We are looking forward to a pretty low-key weekend with our girls. Highlights include a fall family photo session~ our first as a party of five!~ and lots of R&R. I can’t wait!

 

It’s a contrast to last weekend, when the Hubs & I hung up our parenting shoes for 48 hours & traded them in for party shoes. Our close friends got married & we had SO MUCH FUN!

With our sweet girls being lovingly taken care of {Baby J was at Grammy & Grampy’s; Little O & H-Berry had fantastically fun sleepovers with Auntie Jen & Auntie Lala}, the Hubs & I were able to kick back & enjoy every minute of our little mini-vacay.

 

We kicked off the weekend with beers on the rooftop deck at 3pm on Friday. Yes, please.

rockstar 1

It was in that moment~ beer in one hand, the Hubs’ hand in the other~ that I relaxed. Really, truly deep-sigh-of-happiness relaxed.

I had no one to worry about. Our children were in great hands. The Hubs & I could talk for more than four sentences without being interrupted. I could go to the bathroom by myself and didn’t have to schedule the day around meals, naps or bedtime. No negotiating. No temper tantrums. Nothing but a husband who I was super excited to hang out with, and friends that have been in our lives for over a decade to laugh + catch up with.

 

It.was.glorious.

 

We celebrated the heck out of the newlyweds. They were so incredibly happy~ it was a true gift to watch them commit their lives to each other. Aren’t they gorgeous!?

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We had a FABULOUS time with our friends. Here’s a shot of the crew {and yes, the Hubs is wearing a mask…don’t ask. Lol}.

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And can I just say how absolutely *great* it felt to leave the yoga pants at home & put on a pretty dress?!

It should a be required post-baby activity. Dressing up + having a wedding date night with my favorite guy really helped me to feel like myself again. Woo hoo for that {and woo hoo for slimming camera angles too!}. 

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The best part?

When we went to pick up the girls on Sunday afternoon, I was rested. I was refreshed. I was more than ready for their hugs, kisses + endless stories about all the fun they had at Auntie Jen + Auntie Lala’s houses {or in Baby J’s case: coos, snuggles + sweet smiles}.

That energy has stuck with me all week. Who knew that a 48-hour mini-vacay could help me be a better, more patient momma?

I always hesitate to leave the girls~ I don’t want to miss one second!~ but this trip served as a great reminder to me: it’s okay to need a little time away every once & a while. We all survived. In fact~ we’re all better for it.

I call that a major weekend win, friends.

Counting My Kisses: A big huge thank you to my in-laws + my sisters for taking such great care of the girls over the weekend! Little O & H-Berry are STILL talking about their sleepovers {we owe you one!}. I’m so thankful for the time away with the Hubs + with our friends~ it makes me that much more appreciative of all of the fun, funny + positively awesome people we have in our lives. And our mini vacay made me even more thankful to be a momma~ having a 48-hour break from it just reaffirmed that it’s truly the best job in the world!

See you next week, friends! Have a GREAT weekend!

Siggie-21

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Tiny Prints: a love story

Early in our marriage, the Hubs deemed me the “Writing Correspondence Captain” of our household.

Something needs to be signed with a heartfelt sentiment? I’m your girl. Wedding RSVP has to go in the mail? I’ve got it covered. Holiday cards that need to be sent out to 125 family members & close friends? I’m on it.

 

Truth be told, I’ve enjoyed my role as Writing Correspondence Captain from the get-go. Stationary is kind of my thing. I love picking out the perfect card to send a friend or a fab set of thank-you notes to send out to family.

And then…

I discovered Tiny Prints when I was pregnant with Little O.

 

Can we say game changer?! 

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I spent hours pouring over birth announcement options during my pregnancy with our oldest daughter. When Little O checked into the world in 2009, I had settled on her Tiny Prints birth announcement weeks earlier. I simply filled in her arrival details, uploaded one of my favorite newborn pictures of our brand-new babe & volia! The cutest birth announcements ever arrived in our mailbox a week later.

I was hooked.

 

In quick succession, Little O’s Baptism invite, first birthday party invite & first birthday party thank you notes were all purchased from Tiny Prints. Each order was even more adorable than the last.

By the time H-Berry arrived in January of 2011, I was a Tiny Prints pro. Birth announcement, Baptism invite, first birthday invite, family Christmas card~ Tiny Prints was my go-to. My expectations for greatness were high, and Tiny Prints met & exceeded them every.single.time.

 

So you can imagine that Baby J’s birth announcements have been front & center on my mind for some time now. I may or may not have spent a bit of time narrowing down my options the weekend of her gender reveal party. I’m dedicated like that.

 

Friends, I’m happy to report that Tiny Prints delivered again. We sent out Baby J’s birth announcement to friends & family a few weeks ago, and I must say~ it’s my favorite announcement yet!

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It’s the perfect fit for our Baby J~ soft, sweet & adorable {I removed all of our names for this post but the gorgeousness remains!}.

And the back? I melt

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Seriously~ it’s the cutest picture I’ll probably ever take of my children. I’m quite certain I’ll still have it framed when I’m 90 years old. Love it!

 

And speaking of love…

I have all three of our birth announcements hanging on our fridge. I look at them at least a hundred times a week as I’m making lunches, refilling milk glasses and putting away groceries. The birth announcements capture a life-changing moment for our family~ and serve as a constant reminder as to how fast our sweet girls are growing.

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Tiny prints 5

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If you are in the market for a beautiful & unique card for your little one, check out the fabulous birth announcement collection over at Tiny Prints. Every color, size & style you could EVER want~ it’s so much fun!

Counting My Kisses: A huge thank-you to Tiny Prints for partnering with me on Baby J’s birth announcements! It has been an honor to work with one of my absolute favorite companies…and an awesome way to come back from my bloggy maternity leave. Hope your week is going great friends~ stay tuned because we have LOTS to catch up on!!

Siggie-21

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I am also the writer/memory keeper of our family! Those prints are adorable! I am also addicted to Shutterfly. Is Tiny Prints a branch of Shutterfly?

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Amy

Shutterfly is fab too, Meranda! Shutterfly & Tiny Prints are owned by the same company, I love it. :) Thanks for stopping by, have a great day!

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