Tuesday, June 28, 2016

Dear Arabella

Oh, my sweet girl. Where do I even begin? 

Three years ago at 9:08AM, we officially met, and since the first moment I laid eyes on you my life has never been the same. Your sweet face and wild hair immediately melted my heart, and while you met many people, we mostly spent your first day on Earth just you and me. 

Over the years your personality has really developed, and you are a feisty, silly, and brave little thing. You love to play with your big brother (who you affectionately call Gav Gav) and you absolutely adore your Daddy. You give the most squishy hugs and kisses, and you can brighten anyone's day with that sweet smile of yours. I never dreamed that I'd have a daughter, and especially not one as special as you. You bring such immense joy to all of our lives, and we are abundantly blessed to have you in our family. 

Your brother completely changed my life by making me a mom, and the bond that we share is so special. However, having a daughter is a whole different ballgame. I  know that you won't understand this for quite a while, but in many ways you've saved me.

You were born the day before the world lost one of the sweetest women ever, my Me-Maw. Your birth allowed her death to hurt, but not shatter me. I hate that you never got to meet her...you would have adored Me-Maw. But she did get to see a video of you right before she passed away, and for that I am forever thankful. 

You make me want to be better woman, so that you have a great role model to look up to. 

You push me to follow my dreams and to never quit. 

You make me genuinely happy. 

You make me laugh each and every day. 

You inspire me to always work on my relationship with the Lord.

Today, you turn three and you're already embracing that "threenager" status. :) You have sass, you have spunk, and you are learning how to be more independent. While this can be frustrating for mommy and daddy, I hope that you always keep a little of these characteristics with you as you grow up.

Love this precious little face!
You are very dramatic and often act out your favorite TV shows, and it wouldn't surprise me one bit if you become an actress one day. You love to run outside with Gavin, and you also love twirling and dancing. You love when daddy throws you in the air (and often say "Do again, do again!" over and over until he does) and you love when I hold you. You absolutely hate brushing your teeth and fixing your hair, and I have to wrestle you to do both. :) 

As food goes, you aren't too picky, and some of your favorites are beans (of any kind), cheese, hot dogs (no bun), cucumbers, fruit snacks, and pasta. You dislike strawberries and would rather drink water over juice. Your favorite thing to do at the playground is to swing, and you could literally swing all. day. long. You love going to the beach and prefer to stay in the water (as long as someone is holding you) rather than play in the sand.

You travel pretty well and thus far your furthest road trip was last summer when we went to Louisiana (13 hours). Your favorite TV shows include Peppa Pig, VeggieTales (especially Larry Boy), Sofia the First, Little Einsteins, and a new favorite is Daniel Tiger. You are incredibly friendly, which freaks me out sometimes, but thankfully you're obsessed with the Safe Side Super-Chick DVD and she's teaching you in very silly ways how to be careful. 

Today, we celebrate your third year of life by exploring a little of Charleston, and on Saturday we will celebrate with your friends and family. I love you with all of my heart Arabella Therese Christmas, and I thank God daily for picking me to be your mommy.

Monday, June 27, 2016

Girls Getaway with Emily Giffin!

This past Saturday was quite possibly one of the most exciting days I've had in a very long time, as I met my favorite author Emily Giffin! 

If you're not familiar with her writing, maybe you've heard of the movie Something Borrowed? Well, that awesome chick flick was based off of Emily's novel of the same name. :) (By the way, I recommend reading SOBO, and then reading Something Blue. Something Blue is the sequel to SOBO and is actually in the process of being made into a movie (YAY!). Emily told us Saturday that scripts were just sent to Kate Hudson (who plays Darcy) and John Kransinski (who plays Ethan) and Something Blue is REALLY happening! Without a doubt, Blue is my absolute favorite EG novel...although Where We Belong is a close second. ;))

May 2011...impatiently waiting for SOBO's release
I've been a fan of sweet Emily for years, and although I can't remember how I stumbled upon this fabulous author, I'm so thankful that I did. The way that she writes is absolutely inspiring, and the characters that she creates leave me speechless. Her ability to captivate real, raw human relationships makes reading her books something that I simply cannot live without. 

Okay, back to the event! 

On Saturday I headed downtown to the Gaillard Center for Emily's Girls Getaway event that included a question and answer segment and book signing, as well as tons of food, cocktails, and games. I asked Emily if she plans to re-visit the storyline from Where We Belong and she said yes! (If you'd like to see the Q&A segment, check out the live video from the Charleston event on her Facebook page. I asked my question around the 10:45 mark.) While I went by myself, I ended up meeting a sweet girl named Jessica, who was also there alone. We had a great time discussing our favorite books, authors, and our lives in general, and I'm thankful for this sweet new friend. 

Thanks to Jessica, I also got the moment I told Emily that baby number 3 is going to be named Ethan, which happens to be a character in Something Borrowed/Blue, and she was thrilled. :) 

A video posted by Lindsey (@lindseychristmas) on

Mrs. Giffin's newest novel, First Comes Love, comes out tomorrow but thanks to an awesome swag bag that I got for attending the event, I received an advance copy. 

And y'all. 




I started reading it yesterday and I seriously cannot put it down. Because it's a signed copy I'm trying not to beat it up too badly, but goodness I've taken that book with me everywhere! A story about sisters dealing with the anniversary of a family tragedy, both are at a crossroads in their life and are dealing with separate but similiar struggles. I haven't decided if I'm Team Josie or Team Meredith yet, but I'll keep you updated. :)

Boys mow the yard, Mom reads, Bella runs around. :)
Overall it was an absolutely lovely weekend, and while I felt horrible on Sunday due to a night of restless sleep, I'm looking forward to the very busy week ahead.

How was your weekend? 

Are you an Emily Giffin fan?

Sunday, June 19, 2016

Father's Day: Healing & Hopeful

Up until my husband became a father, I was never a fan of Father's Day. My earthly father has not been the kind of man that one should ever celebrate or devote an entire day to, and Father's Day was always a hard day filled with flashbacks from my childhood, anger, and sadness. 

But something incredible happened. 

I watched the man that I married become a father to our son, and then our daughter, and I started to heal. Seeing the way a father should act has been one of the most beautiful things I've witnessed in my adulthood. Now, the man I chose to marry is the complete opposite of my father. For starters, he's not an abusive alcohol so I call that a big win from the get-go, but it's more than that. My husband is gentle and patient, he is kind and silly, and the best part of all he that is a Christ follower who teaches our children about God. Seeing him interact with our children has slowly but surely put all of those broken pieces back together. 

Right about now I'm sure I sound like a Kelly Clarkson song, and if that's what you're thinking then you'd be right. Sweet Kelly and I apparently have a lot in common when it comes to our father's, and her most recent song Piece by Piece is one that is very dear to me. While my father didn't abandon me like Kelly's did, he created a hostile and abusive environment for my sisters and I to grow up in. He emotionally, verbally, and physically abused my mother, and when I got old enough he tried to do the same to me.
Except I left home at 17 to live with my grandmother and I never looked back. Because while I saw what was happening all those years, I swore that I would never let a man treat me like that, and to this day one never has. (Well, they've tried...but this Cajun mouth hasn't kept quiet, and those men have no part in my life.)

To this day there is still turmoil with my father. He is erratic and even more of a drunk than he used to be. I've tried to help...tried to allow him to be a grandfather to my children, but the first time he yelled at me in front my children was the last time he ever saw them. As a Christian, I do believe that one should honor their mother and their father (Exodus 20:12), but I also believe that you should distance yourself from things causing you to sin and things that are toxic. (Mark 9:47)

So that's what I've done. 

Last month on the day I finished graduate school and earned a Masters degree, I received three incredibly rude and threatening messages from my father. He'd just figured out that I removed him from my Facebook and he could no longer see pictures of my children, and he was furious. He told me I was crazy...that I was messed up in the head. That I was a child and a coward and threatened that something would happen if he was not allowed to see his grandchildren. (FYI - all curse words have been removed)

On that day, in my heart, it. was. done. I was done. The power that he once had over me was gone because I was no longer a little girl, but a mother with an instinct to protect her children, and I was livid. The strange thing is that I no longer feel anger towards him, only sorrow for all that he has lost. I have forgiven him in my heart for all of his wrongdoings, but will not allow him to cause anymore harm.

On this day, Father's Day, I am disappointed that I do not get to celebrate that relationship in my own life, but I am abundantly excited to shower my husband with love. I know that in this world marriages fail just as often as they succeed, but I truly have faith that our marriage will be one that lasts. However, if something goes wrong and I do nothing else right, I can breathe a sigh of relief knowing that my children have been blessed with the most amazing father. 

It's taken a really long time to understand this because in my mind the word father is not synonymous with good things, but I do have another father. This Father adores me and is proud of me. He will never hurt me or leave me. He is perfect and caring and a King, and technically that makes me a princess. I know that I can do all things through His strength, and that He is always there for me. 

And that's a beautiful thing. 

***If you're reading this and can relate to the relationship that I have with my earthly father, I urge you to come to terms with the facts, get angry about it and then let that anger go. Forgive him. If you can repair that relationship, try. If you've tried there's still suffering, walk away. Pray for him. He will always be your father, but he doesn't have the right to hold that fact over your head or to take credit for your accomplishments. Run to your heavenly Father. Dive into His Word. It's going to be okay. Maybe not right away, but eventually, you're going to be okay.***

Wednesday, June 15, 2016

Our Rainbow Baby - Halfway There!

Somehow time has flown by incredibly fast, and I am already 20 weeks pregnant with our sweet Rainbow Baby! My last update covered my pregnancy experience during the first 12 weeks, so I'll pick up at week 20 and briefly summarize weeks 13-19. :)

Current week: 20 weeks and I cannot believe we're halfway through this pregnancy! We visited the doctor yesterday and got the cutest profile picture of our sweet boy! Everything is looking perfect and I'm so thankful for a healthy, growing boy. We also confirmed the gender again (since we found out so early at 14 weeks), and after 20 minutes of poking around he finally let us see his boy part. :)

Size: According to the ultrasound tech he weighs 12oz, and according to the app on my phone he's the size of a mango.

Movement: For the past week I've been feeling his sweet kicks every day, and boy is he active! This feeling is so magical and I'm thankful that I get to feel them again. Last Monday (6/6) Keith felt him for the first time and was the sweetest thing.

Cravings or aversions: As much as I liked eating oranges, tomatoes, and all things acidic in the first trimester, all of it caused a lot of trouble and I had a flare up of my IC (Interstitial cystitis...a bladder problem I've had for years), so I've had to stay away from them. I can't really say that I've craved anything specific, but I will say that I will all of a sudden be starving, eat a few bites of something, and then be sickly full. Oh, the pregnancy fun. :)

Weight gain: I've happily gained only 7 pounds! Hopefully I won't gain a ton more so that I'll be around the 20-25 lb. range. I started out heavier than I would've liked to be, but I'm remaining hopeful that my body still knows how to grow and have babies.

Sleep: I'm sleeping pretty well, minus the fact that I have a toddler (Bella) next to me and she sleeps horribly. We're still co-sleeping with her and are hoping to move her to a Big Girl bed very soon.

Symptoms: I'm quite exhausted and am usually passed out by 10PM. I also get heartburn frequently, pee all of the time, and can be a bit moody (just ask my husband;)), but honestly I wouldn't change a thing. I know what a big blessing this baby is and I'm thankful for each moment.

Gavin is SO in love with his baby brother!
Name: Oh, the name! We had originally decided on Ethan Elijah, but after much thought and going back-and-forth with Keith, we've finally decided on Ethan Andrew!!! I'm SO excited about his name and finally feel at peace. For some reason Ethan Elijah never felt right, but I'm thrilled with Ethan Andrew. :)

Monday, June 13, 2016

Judy Hopps is my Soul Sister

I know that we're a little late to the game, but on Friday night my family and I finally watched Zootopia. A movie about a determined bunny, rookie cop named Judy Hopps and her unlikely partner, a con artist fox named Nicholas Wilde, who work to uncover a conspiracy ailing the city of Zootopia.

As a parent, I loved this movie for my kids. Of course it was cute, funny, and full of teachable moments, but more than anything it was inspiring. It showed humanity in the form of animals, and was incredibly honest. The movie ends with Judy saying, "Life's a little bit messy. We all make mistakes. No matter what type of animal you are, change starts with you."

And this I love.

There are two major themes I took away from this movie.

The first...

I want my kids to know that yes, they may only be one person, but they have a voice and it should be used for good. They should speak up for those that cannot speak for themselves (Proverbs 31:8), and never forget that they have to power to be courageous. We live in a world that is full of negativity and evilness, but yet in spite of that there are still good things here. Still beautiful moments and people and experiences, and we each have the opportunity to be a light in the darkness...to embrace who we are and soar.

(It's honestly a little difficult to believe the words above in light of this weekend's events in Orlando, Florida. On Friday, a beautiful, young, talented singer named Christina Grimmie was murdered after performing at her concert, and then on Sunday morning 50 innocent lives were stolen at the hands of an Islamic terrorist. It's unfathomable how so much harm was done in such a short amount of time, especially all in the same city! I'm absolutely sick over these vicious attacks...I just don't understand. I know that my God is bigger than this evilness and the only thing I find peace in is knowing that He is in control, and He is a just God, and those responsible for these horrific acts will face justice one way or another.)   

The second...

Another theme in this movie is sweet Judy and her "I can be anything!" attitude. Now, as someone that tries and fails often, I admired seeing a character so determined and full of gumption. (For the record, this may be my favorite word, as it literally means "shrewd or spirited initiative and resourcefulness", and that my friend is me in a nutshell. Gumption doesn't mean you always succeed, but it means you try.)

Anyway, while Judy is determined to become a cop (the first bunny cop!), her parents have a different way of looking at things.

In case you didn't watch the video, here's the just of it:

Bonnie Hopps: Of course, it is okay to have dreams.
Stu Hopps: Just as long as you don't believe too much in them.

While Stu and Bonnie Hopps mean well, they are straight up dream killers. It's perfectly fine to be realistic and share your concerns with someone, but to spew negativity stating how you just know something will not work out, or that it's definitely not a good idea is just foolish. Because here's the thing -- these people don't know how things will turn out. Just because they don't believe it can happen doesn't mean it can't.

I know many people just like Judy's parents who eagerly share how awful my plan/dreams/goals sounds. And considering that I have many interests and goals and sometimes go overboard in executing them, I somewhat understand the concern...but why not offer support or encouragement? Why not have faith and believe in that person, or why not simply keep your lips zipped?

I don't know what my future holds, but I know that if animated movies like Zootopia give me goosebumps and inspire me to keep going, then that's enough for me. I'm so thankful for movies like Zootopia and hope that my children grow up to be as determined and persistent as sweet Judy Hopps. 

Friday, June 10, 2016

Lake Lure, I Love You!

Only a 4 hour drive from our home in Charleston, my family and I frequently visit the Asheville, North Carolina area. I've loved this area since the first time we explored it, and that's mostly due to the enchanting Biltmore Estate. 

During those first visits we stayed in Asheville at hotels, but have ventured further away from the city and into the beautiful mountains. From Black Mountain to Bat Cave to Lake Lure, each cabin and location offered something unique. However, our most recent trip occurred over Memorial Day weekend, and was hands down the best cabin trip we've ever taken. And the beautiful Lake Lure area gets all the credit for this accomplishment. 

Lake Lure is as unique as it is beautiful, with it's winding mountain roads, mountain and lake views, and small-town feel. For most of the year, only 1200-1400 people actually live in Lake Lure, but once summer hits nearly 10 times that amount spend their days in Lake Lure! I can absolutely understand why, as there is something here for everyone. To put this quaint area into perspective, have you seen a little movie called Dirty Dancing? Well, Lake Lure was the location of that film and it's just as charming now as it was when we watched Johnny get Baby out of that corner. 

We only spent 1 full day actually exploring the Lake Lure area, but were able to see the entire lake via boat tour (highly recommended!) and walked around the town center to the Lake House Diner for lunch (where I had an absolutely delicious burger). There was also an arts and craft show happening, and my sister-in-law and I stopped by to browse. We couldn't have prayed for better weather, and it was just the perfect day.

While there's tons to do, perhaps the most enjoyable thing was sitting on the deck at our cabin and enjoying the solitude. The cabin was located in a private community with access to a lake, picnic area, and trails. With three toddlers in tow (my 2 and my sweet nephew) we didn't utilize the amenities, but instead enjoyed being in the middle of nature. I can't explain how peaceful it was, and how peaceful I felt.

It was quiet.

It was calming.

And I felt closer to God than I have in a long time. 

We did have access to the internet and television, but we didn't watch TV a lot and barely used the internet. We basically had a technology detox and it was fabulous!

The following day we headed to Biltmore, but I'm going to save that post for another day. I don't know when we'll visit Lake Lure again, but I'm praying that it is sooner than later. :)

**Below is a list of cabins we've personally stayed at and recommend if you're interested in visiting this wonderful area!

2 Bed/3 Bath Cabin that I talked about in my post. :)

3 Bed/3 Bath Cabin located on Lake Lure with gorgeous views! We stayed here in January and it was stunning.

Unfortunately, the cabin that we stayed at in Black Mountain overlooking the river is no longer available, but if you can find a similar one I say book it! There's nothing like waking up to the sounds of the river paired with a mountain view.

Wednesday, June 8, 2016

Book Review: Love & Gelato

A few weeks ago I had the most vivid and beautiful dream. Everything was crisp and it felt so real. Luckily, Keith, the kids, and I were in Tuscany and then Cinque Terre, and I woke up on cloud 9. The next day I brought the kids to Barnes and Noble‬ and I happened to find Love & Gelato sitting on a table. I knew that I not only had to purchase it, but read it immediately.

My hopes were high, as my yearning for Italy has grown over the last few months (if you can believe it), and I was actually hoping to find a fiction novel based in Italy that day at BN. I began reading Love & Gelato last weekend on our way to Lake Lure for a weekend getaway, and finished a few days later.

I am pleased to report that this book easily met my expectations, and I loved exploring Florence with Lina and Ren. While this book is considered a Young Adult book and is for readers 12 and up, I thought it was a perfect summer read. (And technically, 30 is still considered "young adult", right? ;)) Another reviewer of this book stated, "I have a hole in my heart shaped exactly like Italy, so this was a delicious story to sink into to." I wish I'd said this, because it's exactly how I feel. 

Love & Gelato is written by Jenna Evans Welch and is her debut novel. (!!!) So, what's it actually about?

From Amazon.com:
A summer in Italy turns into a road trip across Tuscany in this sweeping debut novel filled with romance, mystery, and adventure. 
Lina is spending the summer in Tuscany, but she isn’t in the mood for Italy’s famous sunshine and fairy-tale landscape. She’s only there because it was her mother’s dying wish that she get to know her father. But what kind of father isn’t around for sixteen years? All Lina wants to do is get back home. 
But then Lina is given a journal that her mom had kept when she lived in Italy. Suddenly Lina’s uncovering a magical world of secret romances, art, and hidden bakeries. A world that inspires Lina, along with the ever-so-charming Ren, to follow in her mother’s footsteps and unearth a secret that has been kept from Lina for far too long. It’s a secret that will change everything she knew about her mother, her father—and even herself. 
People come to Italy for love and gelato, someone tells her, but sometimes they discover much more.
So besides beautiful Italy, what's so great about this book? For starters, I love Welch's writing style and her ability to paint such detailed pictures of Florence. I love how the relationships between characters blossom and how the reader is able to get to know each person personally. I enjoyed laughing out loud to different parts of this book, and felt empathy for sweet Lina as she navigated life without her mom. And to top it off, my favorite quote was used in this story: "A life without love is like a year without summer."

Overall, I highly recommend reading Love & Gelato and anything else Jenna Evans Welch writes!

Monday, June 6, 2016

Weekend End Wrap-Up

This past weekend was one filled with tears (the good kind), exploring, resting, and relaxing.

On Friday, Keith and I headed out on an early date and saw the movie that I've been looking forward to for months, Me Before You. Having read the book, I knew what I was getting myself into, but that didn't stop me from sobbing the last 30 minutes of the film. This story is one of love and loss and is hauntingly beautiful, and I highly recommend watching it. However, maybe check it out on a Sunday afternoon instead of on a big Friday night. After the movie, Keith and I went out to dinner and both felt a bit exhausted and heavy after watching the ever delightful Louisa Clark and the handsome Will Traynor.

Silently sobbing makes for a good swollen face :)
We awoke on Saturday to a bright and sunny day, and decided to take the kids out and explore a bit of Charleston. While we always say that we live in Charleston, we actually live 20 minutes from downtown and don't venture out as often as we'd like. One of our favorite places, Cypress Gardens, was damaged during last year's massive flood and has yet to re-open, so we're always looking for new places to go with the kids.

Keith mentioned heading to Fort Moultrie, which is located in Sullivan's Island about 40 minutes from our house, and I hesitantly agreed. The only time we visited was years ago during the winter and we froze our butts off. However, this time around we had the most wonderful experience!

Arabella has been taking very unpredictable naps and ended up sleeping for most of the time, so she missed out on exploring the fort and checking out the cannons. We ended up wandering around the front of the fort and discovered a path to Sullivan's Beach!

Our little Bella Reese woke up to see one of favorite places (if not her favorite!) and loved hanging out in the water. After spending time at Ft. Moultire, we stopped for lunch and ice cream, Toys R Us, and headed home to relax for the rest of the evening.

On Sunday, I woke up feeling a bit sore and had a pretty intense backache. I think the combination of walking a little too much and riding in Keith's lifted truck made this happen, but I was still feeling okay. Then, my sweet Gavin tried to give me a kiss and accidentally head-butted me in the nose. Now, as a mom I've been head-butted plenty of times before, but this time was incredibly painful. I immediately burst into tears and checked for blood, because I was sure that my nose was broken. Luckily, there was no blood and if anything my nose is only bruised, but the headache it caused lasted for most of the day. :( Gavin felt horrible but I assured him that it was okay, but I was pretty much useless the rest of the day. We did get to watch Djokovic win the French Open (GO DJOK!!!!) and that was awesome.

I also watched the Miss USA pageant and really enjoyed seeing how diverse and intelligent this year's contestant were. Pageants get a lot of heat for being just "beauty pageants", and yes these women are beautiful, but they are also strong and intelligent and fearless. I follow a lot of the contestants and pageant sites on Instagram and my favorites going in to the competition were South Carolina, South Dakota, and Hawaii. After the initial introductions, I was also rooting for D.C. to win because I admire her service in the Army. 

District of Columbia, Hawaii, South Carolina, and South Dakota
All of my favorites made it to the Top 10, except South Carolina who made it to the Top 15. Each year I watch this and it is clear that you must have confidence and poise to make it to the interview, but if you bomb said interview then you're toast! Alabama and California were fan favorites and doing so well, and then their answers were lacking and a bit painful to watch and they did not move forward. 

It does seem a bit convenient that the military contestant was asked a question about the government allowing women to fight in combat, while Hawaii was asked who she was going to vote for (Clinton vs. Trump...really????). Both contestants handled the questions well, but I do think Hawaii had an unfair advantage that may have cost her the crown. 

Overall, it was a wonderful weekend and I am so thankful that I get to do life with these people!

How was your weekend? 

What did you do?

Wednesday, June 1, 2016

Hello Again!

After a few months writing at my new blog, A (Lindsey) Christmas Story, I've decided to jump ship and start again at My Dolce Vita. I've written at MDV for years but felt that I needed a fresh start on a new site. Well, I was wrong. That fresh space felt cold and unwelcoming, and I'm SO glad to be back here with all of you!

I only posted a handful of times over at A (Lindsey) Christmas Story, and I imported those posts to this site so that nothing is lost. (Well, comments posted on the other site were lost, but only because I was unable to successfully convert the Wordpress file to a Blogger format :/) Looking back at what I've written here on My Dolce Vita, my heart is warmed each time I read a post from the past. I started blogging after moving to South Carolina in 2009, and this blog has seen everything from becoming engaged, wedding planning, getting married, pregnancies, babies, and so much more. While not everything written was rainbows and sunshine, it's all a part of my journey and I love reminiscing.

So, why did I name this blog My Dolce Vita?

Anyone that truly knows me knows of my love affair with Italy, and My Dolce Vita seemed like a perfect fit. "Dolce Vita" means "sweet life", and while my life isn't perfect it sure is sweet. :) Although I've yet to visit Italy, I'm waiting and praying for my evening in Roma. And when it finally happens, it is going to be a dream come true.

A bit of a life update since writing consistently...

* Keith and I have now been married for a little over 6 years

* Gavin is 4 years-old and Arabella will soon be 3

* I've just earned my Masters degree in Human Services Counseling with a Criminal Justice Cognate

* I haven't made it to law school yet, but I haven't given up

* We still live in Charleston, South Carolina after living briefly in Atlanta, GA and Mooresville, NC

* I am the big 3-0 and I'm loving it

* After trying to get pregnant for a year, it finally happened in November '15, but then we lost this sweet child by miscarriage in December '15. We named him/her Hayden.

* Only two months after the miscarriage we were blessed with another baby, and I'm currently 18 weeks pregnant and due with a sweet boy (Ethan Elijah) in November

* I've fallen head-over-heels in love with the Biltmore Estate

* Now that school is over I've been reading for leisure, and it's brought immense happiness to my life. I used to be an avid reader, and hope to keep making time for this hobby.

* In 2015 I restarted my wedding videography business and renamed it in my grandmother's honor. I'm currently filming weddings in South Carolina and Georgia and I'm very thankful to carry on her legacy.

I think that's pretty much it! I'm looking forward to writing here and sharing more of my story with all of you!
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