Letters to My Children | 2 Years + 30 Weeks in the Belly

July 20, 2019

Dear Babies,

We’ve been having so much fun this summer! Preparing for little girl and trying to soak up all the fun an only child gets. I’m trying to cherish every moment with my oldest, because I know too soon my hands will be full of another sweet baby. I am so thankful to be a mother to two beautiful kids. Only a few more letters to my children before sweet baby girl gets here. I’m so excited yet so nervous!

To my oldest:
I’ve already written you a special letter this month, since it was your birthday and you are now TWO! But I thought I’d continue the letters to my children and write you a little note as well. One thing that has already changed is that today you counted to three in spanish. It’s no surprise your favorite show right now is Dora the Explorer!

Another fun thing we’ve done this month is go to a place that had two bounce houses, trampolines, and a fun foam pit. You had a blast! I definitely have plans of taking you back. You were so fearless and would follow all the big kids around you. I was really proud but also slightly terrified that you would get hurt. I had a little bit of an internal battle with myself before I decided to just watch and see what happened, only intervening when I felt it absolutely necessary (which was only one or two times). I’m pretty proud of myself!

I really love it when you’re talking to me because you also call me mom. You’ll say things like, ‘Mom, I’m hungry’ or ‘Good job, Mom!’ or ‘Air go mama, a blue ball’ (here you go mama) it’s really quite adorable. You call me mom, mommy, mama and it just melts my heart. I love you so much, my sweet son.

To my youngest:
Wow are you growing and developing just perfectly. We got to see an ultrasound of you to check on a few things. The ultrasound came back perfect and they have no more worries about your development! I’m so happy because I prayed and prayed that you’d be alright. You are moving a whole lot more and I just love feeling your little kicks and jabs everyday. You’re especially active in the morning and at night (or maybe I’m just paying attention more). Which is the perfect way to start and end a day! I’m also starting to see you move my stomach, which is always such a fun part of pregnancy.

As far as my growing belly, no new stretch marks yet! I almost feel like I haven’t gotten any bigger, but I know that’s ridiculous! Because you’ve gotten a lot bigger! At the ultrasound they said you were measuring at 2 1/2 pounds! So little! I can’t believe you’ll grow to be 7 or 8 pounds! In just 10 short weeks. You have a lot of work to do, my sweet little girl.

I got a TON of clothes for you. Your drawers are completely full (unlike your brothers haha!) and the closet is full of cute little dresses I’m going to put you in. I might change your clothes 3 times a day just to see you in all of these cute outfits. Don’t tell big brother…he might be jealous, but he doesn’t super care about his outfits. They just have to have dinosaurs or spiderman on them!

I’m literally so excited to dress you in most of these outfits. And I even have a few more I want to get you that are just too cute to pass up.

My grandma (your great-grandma) is making me a beautiful dress. And I’m so excited because she has enough fabric to make you a matching dress for when you’re older! Gah I can hardly wait!

I’m feeling great. Chasing your older brother around has been good for me. Only recently have I gotten pretty tired. I’ve taken a few naps here and there throughout this past week. I anticipate more naps haha! I’ve had a few stretching pains, but I’m really feeling great. We’ll see what the third trimester brings (I’ve been in it for 2 weeks now, and it’s not too bad yet!).

All I know is that you keep growing, baby girl, and being healthy. I can’t wait to meet you earth side. I can’t wait to see what you look like. Your ultrasound was SO cute! I personally think your silhouette looked like your Aunt AJ’s silhouette. Which is funny, because people thought your brother looked like Aunt AJ when he was a newborn. We’ll see! I think you looked similar to your brother, but upon analyzing both ultrasounds side by side, I can see some huge differences. So I’m really excited to see what you’ll look like.

I may not be ready for your arrival quite yet, but I will be. I hope you know that you are already loved and that so many people are excited to meet and hold you.

I love you both so much.

Love,
Mommy

Letters to My Children | 2 Years + 30 Weeks in my Belly
Letters to My Children | 2 Years + 30 Weeks in my Belly
Letters to My Children | 2 Years + 30 Weeks in my Belly

A Letter to the Birthday Boy | 2 Years Old

July 12, 2019

Dear little one,

You’re two years old today. I remember when I first found out I was pregnant with you. I wasn’t quite as thrilled or excited as I should be, because I had been pained from a miscarriage just a few months earlier. I was worried if I got too excited, I would miscarry you as well. So, I didn’t let myself get too excited about being pregnant with you. But by the time 12 weeks came along and we heard your heart beat for the first time, I knew you would be just fine. And I started day dreaming what it would be like to have a newborn in the house. What would it be like to be a mom? All the things I dreamed about and thought about, came true, but even better than I could imagine. Being a mom is one of the most amazing things I have ever experienced.

You have taught me so much, my sweet little boy. I became a mother because of you. You have taught me patience (mainly because you came into this world so late!), you have taught me how to love more, you have taught me to enjoy the simple things in life, and so much more. The day I had you was one of the best days of my life. My heart grew 10 times bigger that day. My love for your father grew 10 times more that day. My love for you grew 10 times more. You helped me feel empowered. You helped me feel wanted. You helped me feel important. I am a stronger and better person because of you.

Things you love at the sweet age of two: Spiderman! If you could have all things Spiderman, you would. You love to watch any movie featuring Spiderman. You love any clothes with Spiderman on it. You are all about Spiderman. You also run around pretending to shoot webs and making a ‘pew’ sound everytime you do it. Oh my goodness is it the cutest thing I have ever seen! You also love to jump off of things lately, which always makes me so nervous! You are constantly on the go and this pregnant mama gets tired. You love to wrestle with your dad or uncle or aunts. You love to sing ‘ABCs’, ‘Twinkle, Twinkle, Little Star’, ‘The Itsy Bitsy Spider’, ‘The Wheels on the Bus’, and ‘Monkeys Jumping on the Bed’. I’m pretty impressed because you know most of the words to all of those! I love it when you’re playing with your toys and I just hear you singing one of those songs to yourself. It’s adorable and makes me so happy.

Another thing you love is anything to do with water. Splash park, pool, lake, sprinkler, all the above you love! You also love going on walks and going to the park with your mommy and daddy.

I haven’t counted how many words you know, but I’m pretty sure it’s around 250. You can already say sentences with up to 6 words in them. You also never stop talking, which is fine with me right now! If you ever come across words, you start singing the ABCs song, and it’s really cute! You’re learning so much by talking and repeating what we say. You’re figuring out how to piece words together to make a sentence. And I’m really proud of you for that!

You are extremely good at copying what others do. If you can’t figure something out, I just show you how to do it and then you just do it from then on. It’s quite impressive, I wish I had that ability! You learn really well by watching.

You enjoy spending time with your family; your mommy and daddy, mamo (grandma) and aunts and uncle. You really love going to mamo’s house. I don’t blame you, she has a kid pool and a trampoline and a slide that you just have so much fun with. The images below were taken at your mamo’s house!

A Letter to the Birthday Boy | 2 Years Old Aly Dawn Photography

Lately you’ve started to play with your toys by yourself. This is a huge accomplishment! I’m happy you are content to do things by yourself. It gives me some time to do the things that I want to do. Like blog! Or edit pictures of you haha! Your favorite toy is this hot wheels track. You love taking the track apart and putting it back together again. You also have some blocks that you like to play with, as well as some dinosaur figurines you like to make fight with each other. If there’s cars, dinosaurs, or blocks involved, you are one happy camper!

I’ve caught you a few times reading to yourself, and I hope you continue your love for reading! You get pretty excited when I bring home a new book (which I’m trying to do at least once a month). Your favorite books include dinosaurs or trucks. Which I can’t blame you, they’re some pretty fun books out there that have those two things in them!

A Letter to the Birthday Boy | 2 Years Old Aly Dawn Photography
A Letter to the Birthday Boy | 2 Years Old Aly Dawn Photography
A Letter to the Birthday Boy | 2 Years Old Aly Dawn Photography

You are one polite little human. You are pretty good at saying please and thank you. And I think it’s so cute how you say ‘tank you’. And when you say please, you hug yourself tight. It’s adorable. Sometimes I have to remind you of what to say, but for the most part, you are really good at saying thank you to those who help you.

I’m really proud and happy because your bedtime routine has been pretty consistent and it’s been so easy getting you to sleep! We brush your teeth, put you in pajamas, let you have some milk or water, and then let you listen to a bedtime story on my phone. You go right to sleep. And I’m so happy! Getting you to sleep has always been easy, but it’s nice to finally have a bedtime routine that we can do every night.

A Letter to the Birthday Boy | 2 Years Old Aly Dawn Photography

You’re still a huge fan of your daddy. It’s so cute whenever he comes home and you go running to him yelling, ‘daddy!’. I also really enjoy seeing you two interact and get along. He’s a pretty awesome daddy, but you already know that! I hope you always love your daddy this much!

A Letter to the Birthday Boy | 2 Years Old Aly Dawn Photography

I’m so blessed that I get to stay home with you every single day and watch you grow and learn. Being a stay at home mom is so amazing and fulfilling! Thank you for teaching me so much in the two years you’ve been in my life. I can’t wait to learn even more from you! You’re my little buddy, my partner in crime, my explorer, and my sweet boy.

I’m really excited to see you become a big brother. I have this feeling that you are going to be such an amazing big brother! I can’t wait to witness this growth. I know you’re going to be such a big help when your little sister gets here. I’m excited to see what type of personality she will have and how you two will work together. I think you’ll really enjoy being a big brother.

A Letter to the Birthday Boy | 2 Years Old Aly Dawn Photography
A Letter to the Birthday Boy | 2 Years Old Aly Dawn Photography
A Letter to the Birthday Boy | 2 Years Old Aly Dawn Photography

I hope you know just how loved you are. How special you are. I hope you see your worth and you know that you have parents who love you very much. That you also have grandparents, aunts, and uncles you love you very much. You are loved, my sweet sweet boy. You are amazing. You will do amazing things in this life, I know it.

Happy Birthday. You deserve to have a day to celebrate you! I hope you enjoy it and I hope you have so much fun!

Two years looks good on you, my sweet boy.

I love you so much!

Love,
Mommy

A Letter to the Birthday Boy | 2 Years Old Aly Dawn Photography

Dinosaur 2nd Birthday Party

My son is turning TWO in July and we celebrated (a little early) by throwing him a Dinosaur Birthday Party! He had a BLAST! July birthdays are so much fun! I failed him last year by not really throwing a party (I mean, he was turning one…) so I wanted to up my game a little bit. Especially since I am about to have another cutie in my life, I wanted to do something special for my son before all attention went to his sister. #sadbuttrue

I got a lot of inspiration off of Pinterest, I’ll be honest! I am not always the most creative when it comes to things like this. But, I had a lot of fun and I made it my own! All of the graphics were made by me and also the birthday banner.

I also made his CAKE! And I am SO PROUD of it!

All of the images you can download at the end of this post, because I’m just that nice. 😉

Dinosaur Birthday Party Ideas

Dinosaur Birthday Food

So I wanted to break everything down in this post for you, and tell you exactly what I did for his party.

The foods and the dinosaur names are as follows:

  • Stego Chips – Tortilla Chips
  • Diplodocus Dip – Salsa
  • Pterodactyl Pizza – Bagel Bites
  • Carnivore Tenders – Chicken Nuggets
  • Herbivore Valley – Fruits and Veggies (and an AWESOME watermelon!)
  • Jurassic Juice – Green Koolaid
  • Dino Droppings – No Bake Cookies
Dinosaur Birthday Party Ideas
Dinosaur Birthday Party Ideas

My awesome, wonderful sister made the stegosaurus watermelon! It turned out SO good! I am super impressed with it! Don’t you think it’s just the cutest?!

Dinosaur Party Favors

I was a little unsure about doing party favors…but I quickly learned that they are a must if you are throwing a party for a toddler! Sometimes the toddlers don’t understand why they can’t open the birthday boy’s presents…and that’s when party favors come in handy!! So, if you are unsure about party favors yourself…DO IT! You’ll thank me later!

Dinosaur Birthday Party Ideas

These adorable little dinosaur bags (and actually ALL of the party favors) were purchased on Amazon (afl. link)!! Amazon was a life savor for me while planning this party!

The rest of the items in the bag are below (all afl. links):

My son actually picked out most of the things we included in the party favor bag! He was especially excited about the dinosaur stickers part! I wanted to stick with something that doesn’t have a lot of sugar for a snack, so that’s why I went with applesauce. They were being loaded up with cake so I didn’t want to give them candy or anything sweet. I was pretty happy with how they turned out! Plus those bags are just too cute.

I made sure to have enough for everyone including the birthday boy, he deserved to have a party favor bag as well!

Dinosaur Crafts

I was pretty excited about the dinosaur craft I had picked out! I totally found this all over pinterest, so I am not claiming this at all! But it thought it was perfect for toddlers, and I was right! This was the perfect dinosaur craft for toddlers!

I got some washable paint that claimed it would wash out of clothing and skin. It worked really well on the skin, nobody got it on their clothes so I’m not sure if it would wash out well or not! But my son loved it! And I just decided to invest in all the fun colors because I knew I could use it for some craft time with my son later on.

Dinosaur Craft at a Birthday Party

So all you do is make a stegosaurus body (you can download my version below, I printed them out on cardstock, cut them out, and glued them to different colored cardstock) and then you use the paint and the children’s hands to make the stegosaurus’s spikes. The kids loved it! Then you make a dinosaur name out of their name. They could pick between adding a ‘saurus’ or a ‘don’ or a ‘t-rex’ to the end of their name. For example, Ethanasaurus, Andrewadon, or Sarahasuarus T-Rex. Super cute, super simple, and SUPER EASY! Win-win-win in my book! Plus they’re super cute, am I right?!

Dinosaur Cake

I found this dinosaur cake on Youtube – the tutorial comes with print outs on exactly how to cut the cake and also instructions. This is a total Pinterest win for me!

I would recommend to do a crumb layer, then freeze it for at least 30 minutes before you put on the final icing layer. That really helped make it look nice and smoother (I’m not an expert cake maker, so if I can do this, so can you!).

Dinosaur Birthday Cake

For the big dots I used the flat Reece’s. Then I used brown M&M’s for the small dots and Hershy Kisses for the spikes. Super yummy and so cute!

Birthday Boy

I’ll probably still write a letter to him, but here’s the birthday boy on the day of his party! I bought him the cutest dinosaur shirt that he absolutely loves! I was looking for one that said ‘two-a-saurus’ or something along those lines, but they were more expensive than I wanted and not quite as cute as I imagined. So I went with this shirt – that way he can wear it for a long time, too!

Free Printables

As promised, here are ALL of the stuff I made and created for his party! In the banner PDF, I included an extra 6 that you can add white letters for your own child’s name. (If they have more than 6 letters in their name, then just repeat some).

I printed these off on white cardstock at a local store. I looked around for which one would print on cardstock for the cheapest! For the stegosaurus body, I bought my own cardstock and printed it on different colored cardstock.

I hope you enjoy these print outs!

Letters to My Children | 23 Months + 24 Weeks (In My Belly)

June 12, 2019

Dear Babies,

Summertime is officially here and I am loving every minute of it. The warm weather, the rainy days, the days at the beach, the days at the park, I’m excited for it all and to spend it with you. I feel as though time is flying by….but at the same time, I feel like it should already be Christmas time. I don’t want it to be Christmas time, I’m not ready to have to buy gifts for two kids yet! But I am ready to meet baby girl and for the two of you to play and laugh together. It’s going to be so cute!

To my oldest:

You are so talkative lately, it’s adorable! Sometimes you’ll say a recognizable word, followed by a bunch of gibberish, and then another recognizable word at the end. You are trying so hard to form sentences, and, I feel you! It’s hard sometimes! But, I know you’ll get there in your own time. I can communicate with you really easily. And you are starting to say actual sentences like “more yogurt please” or “thank you so much” but one of my favorites is “I love you mama”. I’m proud of you for all the things you’ve been learning lately. And for putting words together, you’re so smart.

Your loves right now include Lightening McQueen (you call him ‘a queen’), building blocks with mommy and daddy, Dora the Explorer, and eating non stop yogurt. You also love Spider-man and Hulk and watching any movies associated with those two.

What you’re learning this month is the alphabet and counting. You can count to six by yourself (sometimes you need a little help at 4) and you can sing along with mommy to the alphabet song. You are also learning some fun nursery rhymes like ‘Twinkle, Twinkle, Little Star” and “The Itsy Bitsy Spider” and you will sing along to those as well. You love singing and sometimes I catch you doing it all by yourself and I just sit there and smile! I really hope you keep it up because it is adorable.

Oh my adorable little son, I can’t tell you how blessed I am that you are in my life. You make everything fun and worth while. Even those days where you may be having a bad day, I still can’t help but feel so blessed. And I’m so excited to see you jump into the role of big brother, you’re going to do so great.

To my youngest:

You are moving around so much! And I’m starting to be able to feel your kicks when I place my hand on my stomach. However, you always stop kicking when I get daddy to feel. You’re already a little trickster!

At our appointment this past week, when the midwife was trying to find your heartbeat, you were kicking the doppler so much and moving away from it. It took so long to find your heartbeat! The midwife said, “I know you’re OK in there! I just need to find your heartbeat!!” You were also moving so much you were making my stomach move. I love it when that happens and I’m looking forward to it happening more as you get bigger and stronger.

As far as I’m feeling with this pregnancy, I’m feeling great! I’ve actually been working out more the past two weeks and I feel amazing. I may not lose any weight or get any skinnier, but at least I’ll be healthy to give birth to you. I think the only complaint I might have about this pregnancy so far (aside from the morning sickness in the first trimester) is trouble sleeping! I have been waking up at 3, 4, 5 am every day this past week and can’t go back to sleep! So….I wake up and blog. Haha. But really, other than that, I am feeling really great. On occasion I have some aches and pains, but that’s to be expected with my growing, beautiful belly. I’m really just so blessed to be pregnant with you.

We’re so excited to meet you!! This next week daddy and I are going to buy you and your brother chest of drawers and toy organizer to set up your room. I’m excited for you two to have your toy room that you can play in together. I can’t wait to get it all set up in the next week or two!

I can’t wait to meet you, but you keep growing and being healthy. We love you so much already. And, although your brother might not know it, he’s going to love being your big brother, too!

I love you both so much. You have both taught me how to love more and how to be more selfless. I am forever grateful and blessed to be your mama.

I love you both.

Love, Mama

Letters to My Children | 22 Months + 20 Weeks (In My Belly)

May 12, 2019

Dear Babies,

Today is Mother’s Day! And I can’t help but sit and reflect how blessed I truly am to be your mama! I have grown so much as a person since I became a mama, and I love being a mama so much. It was what I was meant to do, I can feel it. I’m so grateful for Mother’s Day and for me to reflect on how truly blessed I am. I don’t need gifts or treats (although, that is ALWAYS nice!) to remind me of how blessed I am. I can’t believe how lucky I got with not only an amazing husband, but adorable children as well. And although I have yet to meet my youngest, I just have a feeling they will be amazing, too. Thank you, little ones, for making this mama proud and happy. Happy Mother’s Day to me!

To my oldest:

Can you say terrible twos? Although you haven’t hit that milestone yet (just two more months!) you have definitely started to show the attitude of a two year old. Some days are very tiring and it’s definitely hard to be patient. But I just try to put myself in your shoes. And I know, life isn’t always fair. I too sometimes want to cry and scream when I don’t get my way. I understand. You won’t always be in this phase and I know the saying, ‘the days are long but the years are short’ is all too true. I want you to stay my little baby forever. But, that’s not reality or possible. You are so amazing and so smart. So, I will be patient for you. I will hold you when you cry and let you tell me what’s wrong. You usually calm down and tell me what’s wrong and then you’re well on your way to being happy.

I really appreciate how polite you are! You sometimes say ‘please’ but you almost always say ‘thank you’! And it’s quite honestly the cutest thing I’ve seen.

I’m starting to prepare for your SECOND birthday? How on earth did I give birth to you almost two years ago! I guess time really does fly when you’re having fun. It’s been such an amazing two years, you are my favorite little almost two year old!

I can see it now, you’re going to be such an amazing big brother! You have such a sweet heart (even though you’re in the terrible twos stage) and you really do show me the world with different eyes. I’m so happy to be your mama, you keep growing and you keep learning. Together, we’re going to do amazing things. You are so special and so loved, don’t ever forget it.

To my youngest:

This past week we got to SEE you on the ultrasound machine! We were able to see you wiggle and kick and even give us a thumbs up! Oh, and one other very important thing…we found out what gender you are! And……….YOU’RE A GIRL! A girl! I can’t believe it! I had this feeling for a while that I was going to have a girl, I couldn’t shake it. And I thought to myself, ‘if she isn’t a girl…I’m not sure what I’ll do!’. Then the ultrasound technician asked me if we wanted to find out gender and I said, ‘yes!’ and she asked if I had a guess. I told her I thought you were a girl…then after about 2 seconds she said, ‘you’re right! You’re having a girl’.

I’m so excited and may have already started planning what I want you to wear, all the pictures I’ll take of you, the bows I will put on your head (against my own mother’s wishes, I bet). I am so excited to have a girl! I do have to admit, though…I thought for sure I was going to be a complete boy mom. I’m glad that’s not the case!

Now I have to start collecting girl stuff (since I have NOTHING because of your older brother), figure out a middle name for you, and buy some things for the nursery. To say that I have a lot to do is an understatement…I still have to pinch myself sometimes, I can’t believe you’re joining our family! You are so loved, little girl. We’re all so excited to meet you and snuggle you. I can’t wait to see what you’ll look like – will you look like me and your older brother? Or will you look like your daddy? Will you have brown hair like your brother? Or blonde? Or maybe that reddish tint from your daddy’s side? I can’t wait to see what your little nose will look like, what your eyes and ears and mouth will look like!

But, to be honest, I of course can wait for you to grow and develop. Please come at the right time, when you are fully developed. I want to meet you so bad, but I can be patient (thanks to big brother!). You keep growing and developing like you’re supposed to. You’re perfect, little honey. You make me so happy.

I am also happy about the possibility of giving birth at a birth center! Some things have to line up perfectly for this to happen, but I have faith that if it’s meant to be, we will meet you there! It’s the closest I’ll get to a home birth. Although I really enjoyed your brothers birth, there were a few things that I’d like to change, and I feel these changes will happen at the birth center. I’m excited and I hope it happens!

Thank you both for making me a mother, for showing me how to love more, and for giving me a new purpose in life.

I love you both so much.

Love, Mama

Louisville KY Maternity Photographer