January. We ring in 2012 in a villa at Pelican Hill, it's one of the best vacations ever. I'm a tiny bit pregnant, we've known for just a few days. My cover is blown in front of a few very good friends at the pool when I order a virgin bloody mary. Back at home, Vivi starts escaping her crib. We get some possibly scary news about the pregnancy, switch doctors, have our minds put at ease with more testing.
February. I muster up the energy to take this Valentine photo, but never get around to turning it into an actual Valentine, so pukey do I feel. Vivi turns two, we have Megan and Michael and Robbie and Jackie over to celebrate. It's really farking cold.
March. I'm still sicker than sick in the early part of the month, and even zofran doesn't help. We do a lot lying around in my bed. Nobody ever gets out of pajamas. So much Dora, omg, so much Dora. We survive. I start to show. We get a blizzard to end all blizzards.
April. Easter happens. I turn 31. Kids and I take a trip to OC. We accidentally find out MG's a girl. Kids share the news.
May. Colorado becomes a sure thing. It's unseasonably warm, we live in the yard. House goes on the market. House sells in a week. We travel to Madison for a getaway, bid a bittersweet goodbye to one of our favorite cities. We're at Hodag Park every day. J flies a plane.
June. J and I travel to Colorado, buy the first of ten houses we looked at. Celebrate eight busy years of marriage (three states, four houses, 2.75 children, more pets than I can count). I entertain children daily by handing over a water hose, plopping myself into a lawn chair and staring down at my expanding girth with despair. My lovely Wisconsin friends throw me the sweetest of baby sprinkles.
July. Still hot, I respond by doubling in size, FOR REAL. We take part in the dealership 4th of July festivities. They don't make a shirt big enough to fit my massive bump. Kids play with the hose some more. J's 32. We decide to stay in WI until after baby time. We begin moving stuff from our house to my parents' lake house in preparation for our temporary move. I sweat a whole bunch.
August. Too big a month for just one photo. We bid a tearful front porch goodbye to our Wisconsin house, and close shortly after on our Colorado home purchase. J and A travel to Colorado to supervise movers. Vivi and I sit by the lake for days on end, I boss J around on furniture placement over the phone. Vivi and I go to Mall of America, where I waddle along behind her stroller and we buy half of Baby Gap. We do GTG in Walker, Minnesota with Anne & Kim and their families. It's awesome, as per usual. The kids and I sit by the lake every afternoon. I cry about my cankles. MG decides she doesn't want an August 31 birth date, and starts making her moves the week before. I drive an hour down to Wausau to see my OB, drive back home to kiss my bigger babies and get my husband, then drive right back down to have our baby girl. We meet MG that Monday evening in the midst of a triple digit heat wave in northern Wisconsin. We feel totally unprepared for how much love we'd feel all over again. She's the sweetest.
September. We bring MG home to the lake house, there's one person on hand for every square foot. She meets grandparents, great grandpa, aunties, uncles, cousins, the whole shebang. 11 days into the month, my big littles fly to Colorado. The next day, J and I and a 2 week old MG hit the road to follow. We're Coloradans. Bug turns four. Bug starts preschool.
October. We continue settling into the new home. Bug struggles a bit to adjust to preschool life. We do the Halloween train with Mommo. Neighborhood Halloween party.
December. Holidays! Festivities! I go a little crazy with the merry-making, it's all a whole lot of fun. The year draws to a close with us living a happy, if hectically so, little life.
Happy New Year, my friends. Thanks for coming here, for supporting and cheering and offering up your advice and love. I wish you all the very best in 2013!
*September and December photos courtesy of Heidi Chowen Photography. Love, love, love.