Monday, January 21, 2019

Second Thoughts - Invisalign Series Part 2

In case you missed it, I started Invisalign on November 30th! I wrote up a post about my initial feelings just one week in and I wanted to follow up on those thoughts and emotions now that I've been wearing them for 7 weeks. Check out that smile!

First Thought: My teeth hurt.
Second Thoughts: My teeth only hurt the first 48 hours after putting a new tray in and it's nothing compared to the initial pain I dealt with when I first started.

It took nearly a week for my teeth to feel better after my first set. The first days were very painful and eating anything remotely crunchy or hard was out of the question. The same thing happened after I got my brackets put on. I didn't get my brackets attached until I was 2 weeks into the treatment. (Some people get them attached at their first appointment I've heard. It varies patient to patient.) The brackets apply torque to certain teeth to help them move into the proper position, so it was rough again for a couple of days. Now each time I put a new tray in, which is every two weeks, the first day or two my teeth are a little sore and I get a bit of a headache. Nothing like the initial week though!

First Thought: The edges feel weird against my upper lip.
Second Thoughts: You get used to it pretty quick, but it's uncomfortable at first.

The edges of the retainer felt rough against the inside of my upper lip for the first couple of weeks. It hurt on one side the first week and then on the other side once my brackets were applied. In fact, there were small cuts in my mouth for a few days. It was sore and uncomfortable, but once my mouth got used to it, the sores went away and so did the pain. I think your mouth just has to get used to the foreign intruder and the new way everything feels.

First Thought: I feel like I have a lisp.
Second Thoughts: It's not so bad and only occasionally do I feel like I'm talking funny.

Again most people don't even notice that I have my Invisalign in until I mention it and they take a good look. That means they don't really notice a change in my speech. Occasionally I feel like I sound a little off, but it's probably just because I have too much saliva. (Heads up, you produce more saliva with Invisalign in!)

First Thought: How am I going to eat. I may wither away.
Second Thoughts: I have decided that I will indeed survive and not turn into a twig.

I'm still trying to figure out how much to eat at once! I need more calories during each meal because snacking is much harder especially when chasing 2 kids around each day. On top of that, I'm breastfeeding which means I'm ALWAYS hungry. Breastfeeding hunger is serious. I try not to take my trays out too many times a day. Some days I find this easy and some days I feel like I take them out a million times. But the moral of the story is that I'm not going to wither away. At first my teeth hurt so much more that eating hurt. That pain is definitely gone, so I'm able to eat more. I just have to think about when to do it. Right now I'm eating at breakfast, lunch, afternoon snack, dinner and most nights a little dessert!

First Thought: I have to brush my teeth a lot.
Second Thoughts: It's the truth.

I'm definitely brushing my teeth at least 3 times a day, but most days 4 times. I'm also flossing daily which I know you're technically supposed to do. All in all, this is not a bad thing. In fact, I feel like my dental heath is better than it's ever been. Not that I had poor dental health before. It's just awesome now!

So yeah, still different but I'm much more used to them now. Honestly, my teeth feel weird WITHOUT them on now! Don't get me wrong, they can still be a little bit annoying sometimes, but overall the 18-20 months I'll have them doesn't seem so daunting.

Friday, January 18, 2019

Balancing January

You know, it's funny, I have a blog about balancing my life and lately I haven't written about what I'm balancing or how I'm balancing or really even written at all. In fact, that was kind of a poorly written sentence but I'm going with it because it feels right.

I haven't felt like I've had the time or energy to commit to this space, but I'm realizing now that I wasn't making time for it. I miss blogging. I miss sharing my thoughts, favorite products, how I get things done and just having an outlet for me. Making time for something you love it totally worth it. I make time for my workouts, so now I'm making time again for my blog! Since I kind of feel like I'm starting over for the new year, I thought today would be the perfect time to reintroduce myself, my blog, my life and my goals!

Balancing Me
If you're new around here or just happened to pop in, I'm Amy! Please stick around and stay a while. Leave a comment or hop over to my Instagram. I love new friends and like minded people in my life! I'm a 31 year old follower of Jesus, wife to JP, mom to Chloe (3.5), Brody (4 months), Maggie (8 yo lab/shephard mix) and Moose (5.5 yo lab/terrier mix), fitness professional, running enthusiast, travel nut, Disney and Harry Potter nerd and lover of wine. I think that about sums it up in a nutshell.

Balancing Motherhood
I've been a mother of two kids for 4.5 months now and balancing life with them is no joke. People said it was challenging going from one kid to two kids and I really get it. Some days are HARD and EXHAUSTING. But so many more days are HAPPY and EXCITING. I'm lucky to stay home with them as my full time job now. Chloe is a vibrant, strong-willed, shy 3.5 year old and Brody is a sweet, smiley, squishy 4 month old. Chloe absolutely adores Brody though it took her a few weeks to warm up to him and understand the idea of him. The good thing is that she always wants to have him around and she said that we don't have to send him back to the hospital. He can stay!

Balancing Work
I used to be a full time fitness professional working with others in personal training and group exercise. I stepped back a little when Chloe was born and worked 2.5 days a week and then eventually 1 day a week when we moved out to the suburbs. I sadly left my gym just two weeks before giving birth to Brody because driving into downtown was exhausting and it would be hard to have JP watch both kids while working from home. I still have my certifications and hope to get back into it one day, but for now I'm enjoying my break. My first step to get back into fitness is to start subbing classes at some local gyms. I'm not sure when I'll start, but I'll let y'all know when I do!

Balancing Health & Fitness
Speaking of being a fitness professional, I love health and fitness! I'm one of those weirdos that actually likes working out and running. I love sharing my workouts and what I'm doing to stay fit. (You can find lots of motivation on my Insta!) I'm far from a perfect body, but I feel good in my own skin. It's all about balancing working out and eating. Moderation is key y'all! I'm a firm believer in dessert, but I also love vegetables. See balance! But seriously, dessert is my favorite meal of the day. #sweettooth

I'm a runner and started running in 2009 just because I wanted to run a half marathon with some girl friends. It seemed like an awesome challenge. I ran my first one and I've been hooked ever since. I've run 24 half marathons (it'll be 25 after Sunday!), 2 30Ks, 2 full marathons and dozens of other distance races! Disney races are by far my favorite and I'm toying with the idea of running Dopey in 2020. I may be crazy! Aside from running, I love working out and setting a great example for my daughter. I finally decided to give BeachBody a try after having Brody and I've been loving it! I can workout from home and Chloe even does it with me. I'm hoping to start a new program after my races these next couple of months!

Balancing Travel
I LOVE to travel. You'll definitely find lots of fun and hopefully helpful travel posts along the way if you stick around here. Every year I do an annual girls trip to Disney World which is actually coming up next month! (So be prepared to see lots of Disney love.) I also enjoy, yes I said enjoy, traveling with my husband AND kids. Chloe has been overseas 3 times for a total of 7 weeks abroad in her short life. She'll be adding another 2 weeks later this year and Brody will have his first international flight when we head'll have to stick around to see!

As of right now, I have 5 trips planned with a couple of weekend getaways this year! First up is a weekend bachelorette getaway in a couple of weeks. My first trip away from Brody, so stay tuned to see the shenanigans and how it goes!

Balancing Blogging
Lately blogging hasn't been a priority. I was kind of frustrated with trying to switch platforms and editing pictures and coming up with new content that people actually cared about. I took a step back. Then I realized I missed it. What I miss is having a place to share my thoughts and what's on my brain. This space will be far from perfect and I'm not trying to become the next huge blogger that makes a full time income. I just want a place to be me. Hopefully people like reading about me being me, and get something out of it!

Balancing Life
So I'm here to stay. I'm here to try and balance all of the craziness of being a wife, mother, daughter, sister, friend, blogger, runner and all the other hats I wear. I hope you'll stick around and follow with me on this journey of life. I can't promise much, but I hope to inspire and make friends along the way!

Leave a comment telling me a little something about yourself and let's be friends!

Monday, January 7, 2019

James Brody 4 Months Old

Well it's clear that I'm a second time mom because I'm just now getting around to Brody's four month update and he turned 4 months on December 27th. Yes, 11 days ago. Such is life. It was smack dab in the middle of the holidays and I don't blog a lot from mid-December to mid-January. Sorry little brother! We still love you so big!

Month 4 Firsts:
(Beware there are a lot and mostly Christmas related!)

First Christmas Season
This includes lots of Christmas outfits and pictures in front of trees, lights and other decor!

First Visit with Santa
Brody got to meet Santa when he came to visit our neighborhood for Donuts with Santa! Brody was a bit more fascinated with the light coming through the blinds than Santa himself. But he didn't cry, so that's a win in my book! Meanwhile, big sister was NOT a fan of Santa, but loved the donuts!

First Christmas Party
Brody got to go to his first Christmas party and didn't sleep a wink! This little boy has some serious FOMO and isn't into napping or going to bed when fun things are happening. I can't say I blame him. Here is the only picture of Brody from the party with his sister and Aunt Emmy!

First Flight
Brody killed it on his first flight and barely made a peep! (Brag moment: His big sister was really awesome too. I felt like a rockstar mom!) People around us said they forgot there was a baby in our row because they never heard him. Tip for breastfeeding moms flying with little babies: Wear a shirt with easy boob access and just give it to them whenever they want throughout the flight. I pretty much let Brody sleep on the boob and he was a happy camper. Same goes for bottles mommas! That sucking motion really helps their ears and full babies are happier babies!

First Trip to Chicago
That first flight brought us to Chicago! This will be his first of many trips to the windy city because his mommy, daddy and sister's best friends moved up their in April. Whenever we go to visit as a family, our plan is to spend a night in the city exploring different parts before heading to the burbs to see our people. I also have family in Northern Illinois, so we may be venturing up there next visit!

First Hayride to see Christmas Lights
Right after returning from our Chicago trip, we went on a hayride around our neighborhood and the one right by us to see some AMAZING lights! Brody slept through most of it and Chloe slept through half of it, but Mom and Dad really loved it! Also this is the best picture we got.

First Christmas in College Station
We celebrated Christmas a little early in College Station with JP's family! This way we could see his parents, sister and our soon to be brother-in-law. Plus JP's uncle and family we visiting from North Carolina, so it was extra special. We saw lights in Central Park, had a lovely dinner out, opened lots of presents (way too many for these lucky little kids) and just spent time together!

First Christmas
To finish off this awesome 4th month of life, Brody celebrated his first Christmas! From decorating cookies on Christmas Eve at the Timmers to waking up WAY too early to make it dressed and ready for 6:30 am mass to a huge Christmas dinner for ALL of our family (both sides) at our home. Brody did Christmas like a champ! He was passed all around and was barely put down all day. Lots of love for this sweet boy.

Brody loves...

  • eating whenever he gets the chance.
  • watching his big sister. (He adores her!)
  • chewing his tongue. (All the time y'all. It's hilarious.)
  • chewing his hands when he's not chewing his tongue.
  • standing in his Exersaucer. (He LOVES to be in the standing position.)
  • swinging in his swing. (He'll be too big for it before long it seems!)
  • trying to sit up. (He's getting close)
  • talking and smiling all the time!

Brody doesn't love...
  • getting dressed after bath time.
  • when we don't get him out of his carseat fast enough once we're home! (Assuming he's awake of course. But when he's awake, it hurts his feelings if we leave him in there at all.)
  • having to wait.
Our sweet boy is still such a happy baby, but when he's mad, you know it! 

My sweet Brody Boy,

This holiday season with you was the absolute BEST! We went to Illinois and actually experience a cold holiday like weekend, played at Winter Wonderfest at Navy Pier, met Santa, saw lights on a hayride, had an early Christmas in College Station, spent Christmas Eve at Nonna and Poppa's and hosted our first BIG Christmas dinner. Through it all you were such a trooper. You loved watching everything that was going on and being held by everyone. You're always happy when someone is paying attention to you!

We were so busy this past month and your firsts were BIG ones. You first plane ride and vacation to Chicago and to see The Crowsons went great. You were a rockstar on both plane rides and loved being worn in the carrier all over Chicago. Being near your momma is the best! I'm soaking up all of your sweet snuggles as often as I can because I know you'll be busy and moving before I know it! You didn't have any physical firsts this last month, but a few more are on the horizon. You roll belly to back, but I think you'll roll back to belly and even sit up on your own very soon.

You continue to bring me and our whole family so much joy! As far as babies go, you're pretty darn easy. You let your momma sleep, you love to snuggle, you're happy most of the time and you smile more than you cry. Your giggle is mesmerizing and it makes us want to do anything to make you laugh. I'm going to keep on holding you close as long as you'll let me baby boy!

I love you without wax,
Your Momma

James Brody Gougler
4 Months Old
15lbs 6oz
25 1/2 inches long

Monday, December 31, 2018

2018 A Year in Review

Oh my this year was a fast one. Looking back on it, I think I say this every year. The days are long, but the years are short. This statement may be cliche and overused, but it couldn't be more true. There are days I have wondered how we'll make it to the next, and yet we always do. Then here we are another year later with so many more memories. More fits of laughter, more tears of sorrow, more magical moments, more countries visited, more memories made.

One of my favorite things to do at the end of the year is look back on the year and remember all we've done. This year was a busy one for us! We spent two weeks in The Netherlands and France, traveled to Chicago twice, JP started a new role at his work, I grew a human and gave birth to our baby boy and we became a family of four! But let's take it month by month to see all of the adventures.

We rang in the New Year with my family and wound down from the holidays. We celebrated my father-in-law's 60th birthday with a surprise party in College Station. Chloe started her second "semester" of school. We made it through a hard freeze in Houston. We heard the baby's heartbeat and saw him for the first time. JP went to Singapore and the Philippines for work. I ran the Hot Chocolate 15K with my friend Rachael!

Chloe and I road tripped to North Dallas to see Julie and Baby Alexandria. We had a mommy and me Valentine's Day. We did a family photo shoot and found out we were having a baby BOY! I rescued my sister from a flat tire on the side of the highway and we almost managed to change the tire ourselves. (Yes, this is noteworthy for me. It was a hilarious and unforgettable experience.) I went on my annual girl's Disney trip and completed the 5K, 10K and Princess Half Marathon

We remembered and celebrated the life of JP's Mimi who I had the privilege of knowing longer than both of my own grandmothers. We went to a lot of parks enjoying the Spring weather in Texas. We showered and celebrated our friend's Corley and Elissa wedding. We moved into my parents' house for 2 weeks while we had our entire house painted. JP went to London for work. We found out that my sister was expecting and due just 9.5 weeks after me!

We celebrated Easter in Houston and did lots of Easter egg hunts. Chloe and I tagged along on JP's work trip to Amsterdam. 9 days in The Netherlands and 4 days at Disneyland Paris. We saw the famous Keukenhof tulips, the windmills in Leiden, walked all over Amsterdam, took a train to Paris and dined with the Disney Princesses in one amazing family trip!  

We bought a new car for my Mother's Day present! We started swimming every weekend at my parents' house. JP turned 32, so we did one of his favorite things, GOLF. (My pregnant self drove the golf cart all around.( We took our final plane trip as a family of 3 to visit our best friends at their new home in Chicago. Chloe finished her first year of preschool. We celebrated Memorial Day with all of our neighbors.

We found out that my sister was also having a baby BOY. We spent a day at Schlitterbahn and floated the river in New Braunfels with both of our families. We took a family day trip to the beach in Galveston. We spent a lot of time at splash pads and pools. We went to an Astros game where I got to consume my favorite pregnancy craving...chili cheese fries. We celebrated our friends' (Meena and Greg) engagement! My family and friends showered me and Brody with so much love!

We celebrated the 4th at our neighbors. Chloe saw her first movie at the theater. We went to a Sugar Land Skeeters baseball game for my sister's birthday. We spent a lot of time in the pool. I was a core team member for VBS at our church for the second year. Chloe was a part of VBS for the first time. We got Brody's nursery put together. We celebrated Chloe's 3rd birthday at one of her favorite places...gymnastics!

I helped my mom with her Annual Community Baby Shower at her hospital during World Breastfeeding Week. (This was my 4th year to help her! Prep work starts in January.) I did an impromptu maternity shoot in my parents' backyard. My dad and JP built Chloe a swing set. My sister in law got engaged! I walked and walked and walked and walked trying to get that baby out! I went past my due date. I had prodromal labor for 12 hours and went to the hospital just to be sent home. I FINALLY gave birth to my wonderful, precious baby boy.

I got very little sleep. Chloe started her second year of preschool. We found a rhythm and our new normal as a family of four. We enjoyed having JP at home on paternity leave. We celebrated Emily and baby Gabe at her shower. Brody had his newborn photoshoot. We went on our first family trip to College Station to see my in laws and watch Aggie Football. JP took me on a shopping trip and we had Mexican food and margs to celebrate my 31st birthday. 

We spent another weekend in College Station. Brody had his first pool day. We continued to enjoy JP being home on paternity leave. We went to pumpkin patches, farms and fall festivals. I slowly started to run and workout again. We celebrated baby Alex's first birthday up in The Woodlands. We went to a Houston Texans football game. We went trick-or-treating as two Elsas and two jack-o-lanterns.

We welcomed Baby Gabe into the world and I became an Auntie! I picked up my running game and officially started training for my first post-baby half marathon. I started to figure out how to be a mom to two kids after JP went back to work. JP started a new role at the same company. We decorated for Christmas. We took cousin pictures during Gabe's newborn photoshoot. We spent Thanksgiving in College Station and saw in person the epic game where Texas A&M beat LSU!  

I started Invisalign. We took countless cousin pictures. Chloe leveled up again at swim lessons. We took our first flight as a family of four. We explored Chicago and visited with our best friends. We went on hay rides, looked at lights, drank hot chocolate, decorated cookies and met Santa. Chloe actually sang at her Christmas performance. We enjoyed holiday parties and hosted Christmas dinner at our house for the first time. We enjoyed a lazy week at home with just the four of us between Christmas and New Years Day!

2018 was so good to us and we're looking forward to everything that 2019 has to bring. I know that this year wasn't easy for everyone. I pray that 2019 is better than the year before for all of you. I know that a new year can't take away loss, sorrow, depression or longing, but it can bring a new outlook and hopefully joy along with it. Here's to new year and another chance to get it right!

What was your favorite month this year and why?!

Thursday, December 6, 2018

Something New - Invisalign Series Part 1

Well I did a thing. As you can see from the title of this post, I started something new, Invisalign! It’s new and weird and a little bit painful (sometimes a lot a bit painful). I'm only 6 days in and I'm not entirely sure what I think about it, but I thought I'd share my initial thoughts. Then I can continue to share my thoughts and tips as I go along in case anyone out there is thinking about starting Invisalign!

Why I started Invisalign
I didn't actually start Invisalign because I didn't like my smile. In fact, I felt completely happy and confident in my smile and how my teeth looked. Yes I had a couple of rotated teeth on the bottom and my front teeth were a little crooked after shifting over the past couple of years, but it didn't bother me. It was my dentist that actually recommended that I go to an orthodontist because my bite was off and my gums started receding on a few teeth because of it. Not only that, but my shifted front top teeth were now rubbing against my lower front teeth causing me to grind them in my sleep. This could result in short, stubby bottom teeth later in life. Not exactly something you want to hear. After talking to my dentist, I decided to go to the orthodontist to see what they had to say. The dentist's fears were confirmed and I decided to go ahead with it. The Invisalign would fix my bite to keep my gums from receding and my teeth from grinding, plus I'd get a beautiful straight smile in the process. An 18-20 month process I might add.

Left picture without Invisalign and Right picture with it in. I can already see a little difference. I hope I remember to keep taking these pictures to see the progression over time! So my story begins here at the beginning of December 2018. It'll likely continue until at least June 2020, and since I'm paying for it, you better believe I'm sticking to it!

*Side note: I have never had braces or a retainer before, so this is completely new to me!

I wanted to share some of my initial thoughts, feelings and agitations about the Invisalign after just having them in for a few days.

My teeth hurt.
When I first put them in, I noticed that they felt tight but after just an hour or so, my teeth felt achy and painful. It's not just in one place, but all over. Not only that, the ache is truly painful at times! They say that the first couple of days with a new tray will hurt, but as your teeth shift and get used to that tray, the pain and ache lessens. At this point, I'm hoping that's the case! This time around, day 5 is when the pain started to subside. They're still tender when I take them out to eat, but hopefully that will get better too.

The edges feel weird against my upper lip.
Another thing that I'll likely just have to get used to, but the edges of the tray feel weird against my upper lip. It's actually rubbing a little sore on one side which I plan to bring up with the orthodontist if it doesn't go away.

I feel like I have a lisp.
When I first put them in, I felt like I was talking so funny. My entire mouth felt out of whack. My sister and husband both said that I sounded fine, but every sound I made just felt off. Luckily I don't actually have a lisp and talking is easier as I have them in longer. But seriously, I feel like I have a lisp.

How am I going to eat. I may wither away.
You're expected to wear your trays for 22 hours a day. They're only supposed to come out when you're eating. That's it! That only leaves 2 hours a day for me to eat and drink my morning coffee! Anyone that knows me, knows how important food and especially snacks are to me. I'm interested to see how Invisalign will change my eating habits. I may need to learn to snack a little less. Maybe 4 meals a day instead of 6? I'm not sure how that will go for this grazer. I'll be sure to keep y'all updated.

I have to brush my teeth a lot.
Pretty much after I eat anything, I have to brush my teeth. Now I'm not saying this is a bad thing. It's actually a good thing and I know it will improve my dental health, but it's time consuming and just one more thing I have to do. It's not easy when I'm trying to finish eating so I can get my trays back in before nursing the baby. He's not to keen on waiting. Again, something I'll get used to and in 6 months, I won't even realize the extra time it takes me to brush my teeth after each time I eat.

I can tell they're going to change my habits more than I initially expected. Eating in public and drinking anything that isn't water are already more complicated than they used to be. Taking the trays out and putting them in isn't a hard process, but it is a nuisance and is kind of gross. It's not something you want to do over and over again, especially when your teeth are sore. I have to think about when I want to eat a meal and snacking is likely a thing of the past. That's going to be hard for this breastfeeding momma. It looks like I'll just be brushing my teeth a lot!

Right now I'm just trying to figure things out with my new mouth. I know it will take time and eventually it will just be normal. For now, I'll quietly complain to myself and remember that it's all for a good cause! I'm hoping that in a week or so my initial thoughts and fears will be a thing of the past. Stay tuned to see how the process goes!

Have you have Invisalign or adult braces?
How did it change your lifestyle or habits?

Monday, December 3, 2018

James Brody: Three Months Old

I think I blinked and another month passed by. More than a month in fact because my baby turned 3 months old last Tuesday! I may have forgotten because I thought he would be 3 months on the 29th. Nope. He was born on the 27th and Chloe on the 29th. He's clearly a second child. At least I have a bit of an excuse! But I haven't been blogging nearly as regularly as I would like, so here I am finally posting about my sweet 3 month old boy!

Month 3 Firsts:

First Halloween
Originally Chloe was supposed to be a unicorn and Brody a dragon. Last minute, Chloe changed everyone's costumes, and for some reason, I decided to go with it. She wanted to be Elsa with me and have JP and Brody be pumpkins. And the cutest pumpkins they were!

First time to be a cousin
On November 1st, my sister had her baby boy, Gabriel. Chloe and Brody became instant cousins and I finally became and Auntie! Chloe is smitten with both of them. Brody and Gabe are pretty much built in best friends and we can't stop taking pictures of them!

First giggle
Pretty much the sweetest sound in the world. Baby giggles never get old! I got a video that I'll post on Instagram of him giggling while we were at Chloe's gymnastics. He doesn't do it every day, but I can tell he's on the verge of being a little giggle monster!

First Bridal Shower
Brody came with me to my dear friend Meena's bridal shower! Now he's been to a baby shower and a bridal shower. Next up, Meena's wedding in February!

First trip to the zoo
We finally made it out to the zoo the week of Thanksgiving! Brody loved it so much that he slept right through the almost 3 hours we were there. He woke up now and again so that we knew he was there, but he mostly enjoyed snuggling in the stroller. On the plus side, it was the perfect day, all the animals were out and his sister had the best time!

First Thanksgiving
Two holiday firsts in one month! Brody's first Thanksgiving was spent in College Station at his Jojo and Pops' house. He enjoyed his first Thanksgiving buffet of his favorite food...breastmilk! We had a blast with JP's family for the long weekend. It involved way too much food, Aggie football and lots of fun family time.

 Brody loves...
  • chewing on his tongue.
  • playing with his big sister.
  • napping in his car seat whenever we go places.
  • sitting up and standing.
  • sleeping through the night in his Dock-a-Tot.
  • eating. Always wants the boobie!
  • talking and smiling at anyone who will pay attention.

Brody doesn't like...

  • changing clothes.
  • getting out of the bathtub.
  • having to wait too long when he's already been patient.
Honestly, he's the happiest baby. He's so calm and easy going that there isn't much that he truly doesn't like! He's made being a mom to two kids so much easier than it could have been. I'm so obsessed with him and his sweet, calm demeanor. 

My sweet Brody boy,

Another month has come and gone and you have made our hearts grow more than we could ever imagine. You make your mommy and daddy so happy. Your smile lights up a room and your coos melt our hearts. You continue to be the easiest, sweetest baby we could ever imagine. How did we get so lucky?

This month has been a big one! You experienced two holidays and became a cousin in just 31 days. You rocked the pumpkin costume your little sister picked out for you, and you loved laying in the wagon as we went trick-or-treating around the street. You did opt out of treats on Halloween and turkey on Thanksgiving since you prefer the boobie. Who needs anything else when you have that?You and Gabe are already little besties, and we can't wait to watch you grow up and get into trouble together. We started imagining what we'll be dealing with in 3 years, and we're glad that you both can't move around quite yet.

Everything about you brings me so much joy! You smile when you hear my voice and look around for me. If that doesn't melt a momma's heart, then I don't know what does. You're my little boyfriend and I hope you'll let me kiss you forever. For now, I'll just soak up all the snuggles and the smile you give me because for now, I'm the center of your world and I wouldn't have it any other way.

I love you without wax,

Friday, November 16, 2018

What's in a Name: James Brody

Years ago I wrote a post about the reason I chose the name for this blog and that spiraled into the meaning of Chloe's name and how we chose it. I thought it would be fun to do the same thing for our Brody boy! {Take a look at Chloe's name post if you're interested!}

First let's look at the origin of his name.

From Baby Name Wizard: From the Ecclesiastic Late Latin Iacomus, an evolution of Iacobus, a cognate of the Hebrew Yaakov. The name has its root in ya`aqob (supplanting, seizing by the heel). Some say Iacomus arises from an error in the transcription of manuscripts from the Greek to the Latin by an early monk. Short: Jim. Pet: Jamie, Jimmy.

Meaning: Of Hebrew origin, meaning "He who Supplants".

From Baby Name Wizard: Transferred use of the surname meaning “from Brodie.” Brodie is a place-name believed to be derived from the Gaelic broth (a ditch). Var: Brody.

Meaning: Of Scottish origin, meaning "Second son; Ditch". 

Second son seems quite fitting because he is our second child and a son. Of course he's technically our first son, but we'll just look right over that. Now for the fun part. The story behind how we chose James Brody Gougler to be our son's name.

I have loved the name Brody for a very long time. In fact, I told JP when we were in college that I was going to name our son Brody. {Yes, I was that obnoxious girl who assumed JP and I were going to get married even though we started dating when I was 19. But hey, it happened!} For some reason the name spoke to me. In fact, I wanted to name my future son Brody James, but that changed for several reasons.
  1. My mom reminded me that my Aunt Ginny {one of my mom's childhood best friends} named her dog Brody James. Yes, that exact name. What are the odds? Did I really want to name my son after a dog?
  2. A good friend of mine mentioned that his initials would be BJ. Need I say more?
There are other more positive reasons that we decided to switch the order of the names to James Brody.
  1. My husband, Dad and JP's grandfather are all named James and none of them go by James. Husband: JP; Dad: Jim; Grandfather: JB
  2. JB are the initials for JP's deceased maternal grandfather and the only grandparent of JP's that I never met because he passed when we had been dating for less than a year. By switching the order of his names to James Brody they have the same first name and same initials.
James is obviously an important name in our families. Not only is my dad's name James, but my brother's middle name is James. JP has a grandfather, uncle and cousin named James. Again, none of them go by James. 

It only seemed fitting to stick with the trend. James would be our son's first name after many men that we love and admire, and Brody would be his middle name but the name he goes by. Of course he's always welcome to choose the name James in the future if that's what he prefers, but this momma will always call him Brody!

There you have it! Our sweet boy James Brody Gougler.

Again, if you're interested in finding out the meaning behind Chloe's name, take a peek here!

What are your kids names?
Is there a special meaning behind it? Or did you just like it? {Spoiler: I just loved Chloe's name. No special meaning!}

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