King of the House of Girls

It’s a girl!! Sophie Marguerite Bertoch! Adam is king of the house! Coming March 20th ๐Ÿ™‚ Haha although, Bailey was born on her due date, Claire came a day early…so I wonder if Sophie will be born 2 days early to keep with the trend haha. So yes, we will have 3 girls for our little forever family. Am I bummed we will not have any boys? Yeah, I mean, I would have loved to have had a Momma’s boy in the mix of my Daddy’s girls haha. But I still get my share of cuddles and loves ๐Ÿ™‚ Andย I feel blessed that I was given the impression early on that this would be another girl. I have had a lot of time to prepare for this kind of news. Ironically, even after Bailey, I struggled being able to picture what it would be like to have a boy. I easily pictured girls. In fact, I remember telling Adam when we were pregnant with Claire and didn’t know she was a girl yet, that I felt so guilty that I cant picture a boy. I cant see it in my mind. What was wrong with me! I always correlated it with the fact that it was because my first kid was a girl. But now I am able to see that the Lord was preparing my heart. Specially since we were given a very clear answer that this was our last baby. I am grateful for His preparation, because I really am excited for our girly household. And Adam is such a good ‘girl’ dad. I am so lucky to have found him to be the father of our girls. His therapy knowledge will definitely come in handy come teenage time haha. I am also so blessed to be surrounded by a handsome group of nephews that I can love on and experience boy stuff with ๐Ÿ™‚

SOOOOO. It has been a bit since I’ve done some updating, but luckily and thankfully, I am not feeling sick anymore! I literally woke up one morning in my second trimester and the sun was shining again and I didnt feel like death haha. I still get super tired and have to remind myself that I am pregnant and still have to slow down a bit…which is always a fun game to play while chasing 2 toddlers. But I am happy again!

I have a feeling this will be more of a photo dump type of post, pregnant mommy brain is taking its toll! But we have been doing lots of fun activities during this fall so far, between painting pumpkins, trunk or treats, to going to pumpkins patches and farms etc. ๐Ÿ™‚ We are finally starting to see some fall coolness…up until now it has been grossly hot for October haha but I am seeing a light at the end of the tunnel…hopefully. I wake up everyday expecting a high of 90 anyway to keep from being disappointed haha.

The girls are growing up so much. I feel like they wake up literally cognitively different than when they went to sleep on some days. Bailey will say something out of no where and I will look at her like…since when did you start thinking like a big kid? Using logic to answer a question I had said under my breath haha. She has become so much more aware of hers and other’s feelings. And she does listen to more than I realize…which can be good and bad haha. The other day I was frustrated that Claire crushed up crackers into the carpet (I was too lazy to make her sit at the table…so I told my 18 month old to not get crumbs everywhere…apparently I forgot to put my mom cap on that morning) and I was obviously frustrated and was grabbing something from the kitchen to clean it up, and Bailey goes “Mom why are you angry?” and I explained that I was frustrated that Claire had gotten crumbs everywhere in the living room. She looks at me for a moment and says “Mom…Claire is a baby. She is still learning.” And it stopped me in my tracks. Here I was, getting life lessons from a 3 year old. She just blows my mind. She is so mindful of people and their emotions. She cant watch a show that has people being mean and causing someone to be sad. She will beg me to turn it off because they aren’t being nice. She just has such a tender heart. I love her so much for it. She shares with her little sister, and speaks for her what she thinks she needs haha. She is desperate to play games with her, but Claire is still learning rules ๐Ÿ˜‰ (Although, I get such a kick out of watching Claire find Bailey with me in hide n seek.) Let’s see. Some fun facts haha. Bailey doesn’t like chocolate. She will eat M&MS, but thats kinda the extent of her chocolate desire. She had an ice cream sandwich the other day and ate the vanilla ice cream inside and left the shell of the chocolate on the table. It’s so weird to me haha because I could pretty much take an IV drip of it! Bailey is meticulous when she does things. Particularly when she is building blocks. She has such an imagination! She will bring me intricate towers that are usually color coded and symmetrical and so unique! She constantly amazes me.

Claire is talking much more and her personality has been exploding lately as well! She seems to have a permanent scowl on her face….but that’s just kind of her face haha. She really is a happy kid. She is just more reserved with people, where as Bailey walks into a crowded room and every single person is her friend. (Bailey was at the park the other day and she walked up to this kid and was like “Hi! What’s your name? My name is Bailey. Want to play with me?” I admire her confidence). Claire on the other hand is kinda okay being by herself. She likes to initially start out following Bailey, but then ends up wanting to do her own thing. I love how alike yet different they are. Here is a perfect example. At the park one time I look over and on one side I have Bailey sitting on the ground burying her legs in soft white sand, and across the park on the other side Claire is digging in the hard brown dirt. Neither wanting to be in the other area Haha. Claire speaks more my language in the chocolate department. I have to hide from her to eat any sweet chocolatey morsel in peace haha. Claire could sit and color forever. She lays down on her tummy with a coloring book and colored pencil and it is the cutest thing I’ve ever seen. I love it. Claire is my climber. She will find the tinniest ledge and somehow place her tiny toes on it and climb onto everything! It keeps me on my toes for sure! She loves to sit with a blanket and cuddle up with me on the couch to watch a movie. She has learned from watching Bailey how to apologize when she has done something wrong. It is so sweet. She will be mad at me and screaming (which is more of screech. Boy this kid has some pipes on her) and she will hit me and I’ll say “ow!” With a sad face, and in the midst of her yelling and crying she will grab my face softly and say “Sahh-y.” Melts my heart every time. She is obsessed with bubbles and playing with sidewalk chalk. She will grab my hand and pull me off the couch and drag me to the front door to go outside to play chalk haha. She has some strength for such a tiny thing!

So I know this has mainly been a hodge podge of how my girls are doing, but we are just kinda doing our thing. Just chugging along and enjoying the ride as much as we can ๐Ÿ™‚ I love my sweet little family of 5 and cannot wait until March where I can see even more dynamics ๐Ÿ™‚

These are our Bits O’ Bertoch.

Cassie Bertoch

 

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A lot Can Happen in a Month

Well, a lot has happened in the last month.

My parents came down to visit because they were on their way to see my brother AJ, who graduated basic training into the Air Force. I cannot say enough how proud of him I am. He confided in me when he was about 14-15 years old that he thought about going into the military. I am so glad he followed his dream. He has earned it that’s for sure. Basic training is no joke from the stories I’ve heard haha. Kudos to him for making it through with his sanity. But I loved having a visit with my folks for a couple days. The girls were sooooo happy to have some time with their Nana and Pop Pop.

Then not too long after my folks went back to Utah…my little brother Danny came to visit! He visited for about 5 days, and it was soooo much fun! I was worried that we wouldn’t be entertaining enough for a 15 year old boy haha but thankfully, he appreciates just chilling and playing games. He brought his Nintendo switch, and Bailey became his shadow haha. He also taught her some fun games consisting of Bailey tackling him while he protects himself with couch cushions hahaha it’s nice to have some boy stuff enter our girl world once in a while. I know Adam enjoyed having another man in the house! I think the highlight of his trip was when we went to see the Astro’s play in Houston. Danny and I grew up in a baseball world. We looooove it. It was so much fun. We won! And there was a special firework show afterward that was amazing. Ironically, Ally and John were there too, and only a section over from us! But it was really nice going to a night game just the three of us for his last night of fun before sending him back to Utah. Bailey still calls the spare room, “Danny’s room.” Plus she was mad that Danny took home “her switch” hahhaa.

Then the Monday after he left there was a solar eclipse. Now, I was boring and lame. We didnt get the glasses or make anything to look at it through. Adam was at work, Claire was napping, and I didnt want to stress over telling a 3 year old not to look directly at it and blind her. We didnt have entire coverage anyway, so we looked at really cool pictures afterwards. Maybe when the next one comes in a couple decades we can enjoy it more as a family haha.

THEN Hurricane Harvey hit Texas. (It hit during my birthday….it will definitely be a memorable one! Haha) We had been following it while it was in the gulf, and the damage it could bring. We decided to pack up our important documents and valuable things and enough clothes etc and hunker down at Adam’s parent’s house to wait out the storm. We had a really fun time! Granted, 5 days being stuck inside with all the kiddos got a bit crazy haha but I know the girls loved being around their cousins so much. Plus, it was really nice being around the adults and playing games and just coming together during this event in history. I am forever grateful that we are blessed to have family down the road who will take care of us no matter what. Such a comfort.
We were extremely blessed during this hurricane. Our house did not flood. Our neighborhood actually didnt flood. Adam’s parents house didnt flood. They had a generator that kicked on a couple times when the power went out, but it wasnt very often. Our roads in the area we were at didnt flood too much either. Extremely blessed. Others around us were not as lucky. It was surreal watching the news and seeing pictures and videos of places I have personally driven a hundred times, completely submerged in water. Seeing neighborhoods where the tops of cars are barely discernible from flood waters. It got to a point where even if we wanted to evacuate, we couldn’t. All of the highways out of town were flooded. The airport was shut down. We couldn’t go anywhere. I feel like I should have been more scared, but because we were with safe with family together, I felt a sense of peace. We received roughly 50 inches of rain over a few days. Broke records. Food was being rationed from grocery stores, and many other stores were bare anyway. But you know what happened out of all the tragedy that I witnessed? Goodness. Pure service. The love of God felt by those who helped each other. I watched as people were rescued by those who had large trucks and boats. Police officers and first responders working nonstop to help as many as they possibly could. Stores opening up their space as refuge from the storm, and giving away their goods that they would usually make a profit on. Ive witness miracles. I watched a community come together to help one another. I saw God’s hand in the midst of this destruction. Sometimes bad things happen. And in this case, it was awful, and I know will take years to fully recover. Many people lost loved ones and everything they owned. But there was a silver lining. People rose up to the task. Seamlessly. To help complete strangers. It brought me to tears. Adam and I were able to deliver food packages from the local food pantry, and serve lunches to those in the clean up crews, mucking out houses… and we were so humbled. Not only from witnessing flood ravaged places up close, but the attitude people had that we delivered to. They felt blessed and grateful for what they did have. Brought me to my knees in gratitude to my Heavenly Father. For not only protecting my family, but for restoring my faith in people. There are so many good people in this world. It is easy to forget when you read the news and social media and focus on all of the terrible in the world. And yes, there certainly are terrible things going on in the world, but if you’re not careful, it can confuse you into thinking there is only bad. Which is not true. I have witnessed with my own two eyes the good in people. It makes me want to be better and to serve more. It makes my heart swell with love. I pray for those affected by Hurricane Harvey.

Unfortunately, it is a hurricane that keeps on giving. The storm brought something in the air that does not agree with Bailey. She has a monstrous cough that bring so much mucus in her throat, that she coughs and coughs until she is wheezing, red in the face, and gasping for air. It is terrifying. Her doctor said it is allergies, and to treat her with humidifier and allergy medication etc. I just feel so helpless watching her struggle to breathe in a coughing fit. Breaks my heart.
And then on the other hand I have Claire…who does this lovely trick where she will get mad and cry, but not take a breath. She usually gets close to passing out and then will breathe. Well yesterday she fully passed out in my arms. Just went limp. Eyes rolled back. She came to a few seconds later, kind of out of it, as if waking up from a nap or something. But boy. It scared the crap out of me. Oh, and the reason she got upset? I took a book away so she could go to bed. Yeah. Gotta love my girls! I swear they are going to make me go grey before I’m 30!! Haha.

Tomorrow I hit 12 weeks in this pregnancy. Im going to actually be honest. This has been really hard. Hardest pregnancy so far. I feel sheepish even saying that, because no I am not throwing up…but I feel nauseous all the time. I don’t eat and I feel sick. I eat and I feel sick. Im sooooooo tired. I want to just lay in bed all day long. I am emotionally drained by the end of the morning usually, and we have been watching more and more movies again. (We brought the tv back out after the hurricane). I didnt realize how hard it would be having 2 toddlers and being pregnant at the same time. I knew this was the right thing to do, and I of course have zero regrets….but I am thankful this is the last baby to complete our family. Emotionally this has been hard for me. I am not used to needing so much help. Adam is my super hero. He takes care of us so well. He comes home and sees me on the couch looking terrible, with no dinner waiting for him other than if he wants to make a PBJ like we had, and he will come over and kiss me and swoop in to take care of everything. He plays with the girls and gets them all ready for bed etc. I don’t know what I would do without him. It has made me feel so guilty. I have spent many nights crying on his shoulder, apologizing for my lack of help. For not being the wife he deserves. For not being the mom the girls deserve. For feeling overwhelmed at tasks I used to run circles around. And each time, he hugs me close and wipes away my tears and looks me in the eyes and tells me I am always enough. I am creating a human being in my body. I am creating a miracle. It is okay to rest. Which of course just makes me cry more. I am so thankful for him. I married the best man in the world. I couldn’t do this without him. With starting my second trimester tomorrow…I am hoping some reprieve is on the way. Typically in the last two pregnancies, I come out of the fog in the second trimester. Praying this one follows suit!

I thank everyone for their prayers for our family. We are safe and sound, and we are doing okay ๐Ÿ™‚ I know I am not the best as asking or accepting help…but I promise I am trying to work on it haha. Please continue to pray for those affected by Hurricane Harvey. And please pray for those affected by the wildfires in the northwest, and those who may be in the path of Hurricane Irma. Terrible things may happen….but let’s be the silver lining. Let us serve others and be the calm in the storm.

These are our Bits O’ Bertoch.

Cassie Bertoch

Family of 5! 6 Year Anniversary! Sea World!

So this has been quite the past couple of weeks for our family! Lot’s of happy times!

We are becoming a family of 5! We are officially due March 20th, 2018.

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Both my girls were pretty punctual (Bailey born on her due date, and Claire the day before) so I feel like this is a pretty accurate time frame haha. This may come as a total surprise to some, specially since we have been hush for a bit, so here is some background info ๐Ÿ™‚

  1. Yes this was planned. Had you told me 6 years ago that I would be having my kiddos generally close together, I would have laughed. I am used to large gaps from my siblings and I all being 4 years apart. So I thought that sounded like a good plan. But the Lord had different plans for us. And I am grateful that He is in charge! I couldn’t imagine not having my girls close together! Having two toddlers isn’t a walk in the park, but I love the bond that they share, and I have grown exponentially from this experience so far. I have learned I am capable of more than I could imagine.
    Now…even so, I was thinking I would have a larger gap for the next baby. But again, I am not in charge of the bigger picture ๐Ÿ˜‰ Around Christmas time I had that feeling again. The “there’s another baby coming soon” kind of feeling. Luckily the Lord knows me and my mental ability for change haha, which is why I felt this at Christmastime. It gave me a few months to wrap my head around the idea, and then I went from not being ready at all, to actually being excited about it. We felt like we should have a similar gap with this baby as we do the girls, which would put trying to conceive around June-ish. I started tracking my period and got off birth control and in the first month of trying we got pregnant! I still have anxieties from it taking over a year to get pregnant with Bailey, so this was still a surprise haha.
  2. How do we know we are done? This is something that we didn’t take lightly. I always figured I would have 4 kids. Adam is one of four, and so am I, and it just seemed like the logical decision. I told him that when we were engaged and he was like okay sounds good haha. And that was my plan. But during the time that I had that “feeling” that another baby was ready for our family…I had a new feeling I wasnt expecting at all…that this was the FINAL baby for our family. I questioned this for a while, since I had already starting having doubts about having 4 since I was so exhausted with just the 2 I have. I thought it was maybe in my head and I was just being selfish and weak. And then Adam surprised me one day. We were laying in bed downloading the day and it had gone quiet for a bit, and then he confesses that he feels like we only have 1 more baby meant for us. And that he had felt that way for a long time, but he wasnt sure how I would react. I was shocked, because I had already felt the same thing! We both wanted to be sure this was God’s will for us, and not just us being overwhelmed. So we prayed together for a long time and we both got this very clear answer in our hearts. This was our final baby. So clear that we both looked at each other and said Okay! And havent questioned it since. I know people may not understand this, and will give us the “don’t be so sure” look that I’ve already seen a few times. But that’s okay. We are sure. haha. I have peace in our decision. I am happy and excited to complete our family. ย ๐Ÿ™‚
  3. Are we trying for a boy this time? Well, not that we really have a choice in the matter to be honest haha I am sure if there was formula for what gender you have, people would be all over it haha. We would be happy no matter what ๐Ÿ™‚ Ironically, I have this strong feeling it is another girl. I had this similar feeling for both Bailey and Claire, and I haven’t been wrong thus far haha. But I will completely love and adore any baby we are blessed with. Would a boy be amazing and awesome and new and fun? Absolutely! Would an all girl family be exciting and interesting and fun? Absolutely! So I am happy either way and will not be disappointed or wishful with either one ๐Ÿ™‚

So there you have it. Haha. Inside scoop ๐Ÿ˜‰ So far I have my usual 1st trimester fatigue and irritability haha. Food is not my favorite thing, but thankfully I am not puking or anything so far. I am guilty of passing out on the couch and waking up in a panic wondering if the girls set the house on fire though haha. But otherwise, just chugging along. Being pregnant with toddlers is a new experience. Exhausted would be an understatement, and wiping cute poopy tushies with a keen sense of smell is just fabulous haha. But it all builds character! And Bailey is so excited. She is just old enough to grasp the concept that there is a baby in my tummy, and it is all she talks about. It is adorable. She is such a ย good big sister. And I know Claire will be so happy to have a tiny companion to get into shenanigans with haha. So all in all, we are so very excited for this new chapter for our family ๐Ÿ™‚

And we also just hit 6 years married this last Saturday!

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Wow! 6 years! It has been the best adventure ever. I couldn’t have asked for a better man to be the father of my children and companion to me forever. He is the total package. I don’t know how I got so lucky. Our girls adore him and there is nothing that makes my ovaries explode more than them both running and attacking him with hugs and kisses when he gets home haha. Momma has to fight her way in for a smooch!
To celebrate we decided to go to the temple and do sealings for my ancestors as a reminder of the day we were sealed. (In the Lds church, we believe that we can perform work and ordinances for those who did not have the opportunity to do so for themselves while they were alive. It is truly remarkable, and the temple is the closest I have ever felt to the Lord in my life. I hope everyone can experience the peace and indescribable love that is felt in those holy walls. If you would like to learn more, here are a couple links to a site talking about temples that is directly from the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints:ย https://www.lds.org/church/temples/why-we-build-temples/what-happens-in-temples?lang=eng and ย https://www.lds.org/topics/temples?lang=engย ) It was a wonderful experience and I am so grateful that we were able to go. I even wore the same temple dress from our wedding day 6 years prior! When we were sitting in there afterwards reflecting on our life together so far, we felt such peace. Peace that we knew we were trying our best to live how God would want us to and that we were on this path together ๐Ÿ™‚ Nothing beats family! ๐Ÿ™‚

Sea world! We went on an amazing family vacation with Stacey, Dave, Ally, John, and the boys! We went to San Antonio at a resort that had a water park and fun stuff for the kids to do (we actually went there last year as well because it’s just so awesome!) and on our last day, we went to Sea World! Now…there is something I have to disclose about myself right now…..I am the biggest Orca fan. Remember the movie Free Willy? Yeah when I was a kid I was a part of the club they had with the save the whales, and I had the same cool orca necklace that it showed on the movie and everything. To say I love orcas would not be a strong enough emotion. So when I found out we were going to Sea World, I pretty much lost my mind haha. And it didnt disappoint! It was awesome! I cried when the orcas came out on the water stage thing. Yup. I was THAT person. Haha. It was definitely a bucket list item for me. I just wish I could swim with one. And give it huge hugs. I know I know….Adam already said no…..Hahhaa. What is even more awesome, is Bailey is now just as obsessed with orcas…bwahahah, the legacy lives on! lol. Bailey even went on her first rollercoaster! They had a kid shamu rollercoaster that we called the orca train so Bailey would try it haha. She had no facial expression the whole time she rode with Adam, and afterwards simply stated “I liked it but I don’t want to go on again.” Haha. What a blessing it was to be with family and cousins and make some great memories.

We are definitely blessed and I am so thankful for this life I have. I know it will not always be butterflies and rainbows, but I sure picked the right crew to be on this journey ๐Ÿ˜‰

P.S. Adam and I saw Third Eye Blind in concert for their 20th anniversary tour and oh my goodness it was amazing!

These are our Bits O’ Bertoch.

Cassie Bertoch

 

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Summer Lovin, Having a Blast

This is more of a photo dump of fun things we have been doing this summer so far! Zoo! Pools! Family time! (And my Aunt Leslie and her family stopped by to see us on the way home to Florida! That was a fun little visit!) Lots and lots of reading! Bailey finished the reading program at the library! She read 50 books! Each little goal she got something (a sticker, free Chipotle kids meal, free book, magnet, and lastly a medal). She is very proud of that medal ๐Ÿ˜‰ We also started a new program where we have a personal challenge to read 1001 books before Kindergarten. It comes with 10 worksheets with 100 stars per sheet to fill in per book, and we decided to get ice cream after each 100! We had one so far, and she is working her way to the second one! I am so happy she loves it ๐Ÿ™‚ It’s been so fun getting to know her interests and see her sense of humor. I have really been enjoying it so much.

It’s definitely hot!!!! Whew!! We are trying to keep cool and are just enjoying time as a family! Yay!

These are our Bits O’ Bertoch.

Cassie Bertoch

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Resetting

So it has been a week since we have taken the tv away and put it in our closet. It has actually been a wonderful experience!

Now let me preface this by saying a couple things:
1. This is something that OUR family has decided to do for US. There is absolutely zero judgment on anyone else for not doing what we are doing. I promise.
2. We are not “grounded” from the tv. If we go to someones house, I don’t care if the girls or all of us watch movie and shows etc. In fact, we still (attempt) to go to the theatre with the girls…for the hugest tv ever. Haha.

This was for me.
It was easy for me to turn the tv on and zone out on the couch with my phone and next thing I know, HOURS have passed. I was tired of feeling guilty laying in bed at night and realizing that when Adam asked how our day was and what we did…what he should have been asking is what did we watch….because I could basically tell him how many times we watched Finding Dory, or describe the entire last season on Octonauts.

It wasnt always this way, but in the last 6 months or so I noticed some things:
I found myself not wanting to go and do fun things because it took more effort. I rationalized that it was simply too hot in Texas anyway, or I was tired etc.
I noticed that Bailey was starting to not want to do things because she wanted to stay
home and watch tv instead.
I noticed that Claire would just kind of do her own thing because she would get bored of watching tv.
I noticed that Bailey would throw a huge fit if I turned the tv off even if she wasn’t watching it.
I noticed that we didnt sit down and have meals at the table anymore, because it was easier to just eat in the living room so I wouldn’t have to fight turning the tv off with my 3 year old.
I noticed that I used it as a way to feel less guilty being on my phone. (Which it didnt btw).
I noticed that we never read books together, and bedtime routines were rushed, and when Adam and I actually had time to be a couple together…we just watched tv.

So something needed to change. I needed a RESET. Since I am an all or nothing type of person, I needed drastic measures haha. I tried just turning it off, but the fits were too much and I found myself feeling like ย I “earned” tv time after an hour of play or so. Simply put, with it being in the room, I couldn’t ignore it.

I never actually planned on putting the tv away. I remember just complaining that I needed to watch it less because it was getting ridiculous. Days and weeks and months I feel like I said that. Then I talked to a friend of mine (who has 4 kiddos), and she mentioned she got rid of the tv for the summer and they were happy and actually play together more. I remember thinking wow! I envy you! I wish I could do that! But that is too hard, I cant. It’s not for me. I made every excuse in the book as to why that wouldn’t work for me. But I admired her for doing it.

Not even a few days later, I am laying in bed with Adam around 11:30pm, downloading the day, and AGAIN feeling guilty and frustrated…when he says kind of nonchalantly “Man I wish we could just take the tv out of the living room or something.” I sat there for a minute, and I had this overwhelming feeling to do it now! Right now! So I told Adam lets do it! Before the morning comes and we talk ourselves out of it! ย So we hopped out of bed at almost midnight and took the tv down, put it in our closet, vacuumed and rearranged the furniture how we always wanted to, but never could because of where the tv would be. We had so much more space! We went to bed…nervous but excited.

Well the next morning Bailey had a meltdown. I am pretty sure she went through the 5 stages of grief in about 30 minutes lol. When she finally calmed down enough we explained that the tv needed rest and it was sleeping. For whatever reason, that clicked in her brain, and it really hasn’t been an issue since. She still mentions that she wants to watch a movie or Octonauts, particularly when something reminds her of it, or it’s that lull time of the day. But then I remind her that the tv is resting and she’s like oh yeah. And does other things haha.

Overall it has been a really positive experience. Here is what I have noticed in just a week:

  1. I am on my phone less. It is still a work in progress. I am still on it and catch myself…but it is definitely less than before! And sometimes Bailey and I will watch some shark youtube videos…because she is reazaaaaaly into sharks right now haha. And 20 minutes of shark videos are the best thing ever.
  2. The girls play more! They play pretend food and peek a boo and chase each other around. They build cool towers with blocks and fun beds out of the couch cushions and blankets from beds.
  3. I read more to them! That has become the replacement for the times I just want to vedge. I will get all cozy in the fun couch bed that Bailey makes and will read book after book to them. It has been something I have been wanting to do for a while, but just never could find motivation to do. Bailey hadnt been interested in books because she preferred the tv…now she loves having cuddle time with me while I read. And I get cuddles! Which used to be few and far between haha.
  4. I do more things. When the tv is gone I noticed I gained a lot more time to fill in the day. Sometimes those minutes are looooong haha. But I’ve been better at filling it with fun stuff. We will play in the backyard in bathing suits (or sometimes just strip down in panties and diapers since we have a gated yard) and they play with the hose and little pool. They eat sticky popsicles to their hearts content and just enjoy the sun. Or we go to the library! They have a summer reading program where you can log books you’ve read and get points to cash for little prizes! Bailey has already earned a sticker that we need to go get. So fun. Ive also started to engage more with them. Having dance parties in the living room. (Today we had one and I loved watching Claire watch Bailey dance and try to do it herself haha. She ran around in circles like Bailey and totally got dizzy and fell and just gave up and laid on the ground for a while.) Playing pretend with them. Hide and seek. Cooking together. Bailey is actually interested in what I do now while making cookies because she isn’t zombified all the time with the tv. We go to parks! We explore more park options and are usually out and about early before it gets too insanely hot. A good solid 45min-hour and the girls are pooped and loving it haha.
  5. More time with Adam! Instead of just watching tv or movies, we talk about each others days, or play games and just hang out. I didnt realize how much I missed that. Granted some days we are still on our computers when we need to do things haha like I am right now….but still! More time together! And we have been doing Family History by Indexing, which has been really neat.
  6. Less rushed. I feel like I gained time. So bedtime we can have a nice quiet wind down with bath time and reading scriptures and singing songs and saying prayers…and the girls go to bed content! The change in that has been pretty cool. I think overall I just noticed their “love bucket” being more full at the end of the day, since I am paying more attention to them personally. I can pick up on things more and engage with them better. In fact today Bailey said the cutest thing. I was giving her a kiss on the cheek while we were in the bathroom going potty, and she goes “I love your kisses…but no more for right now.” Haha it was the sweetest thing! She is so funny. I love that I can see their happiness increase. I look in their eyes more when I talk to them and I notice little things in each of their personalities that I love so much.

So all in all. It’s been a win. I am not perfect. I still get frustrated and tired and snap at the girls at times and have moments on my phone ignoring them…but I am making improvements little by little. This was by far the best decision we have made in a while.

So again. No judgement to anyone. I could care less if you watch a million hours of tv all day long. Or even if the girls are at your house and watch 3 movies. Fine by me. Haha. I just needed a reset in OUR home. And I definiltey got it. Iย was the last person I thought would do something like this, but I would recommend it if anyone is on the fence about it. Hands down.

These are our Bits O’ Bertoch.

Cassie Bertoch.

 

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May in Texas is a beautiful thing

Well, May is just about gone. Compared to how fast April flew by for me, I feel like May crawled along…but we had some fun regardless!

On the 2nd Adam turned the big 3-0! I made my key lime meringue and we enjoyed a family lunch before he went to work. ๐Ÿ™‚ I will cherish my last couple years of being in my 20s before joining him in the 30s club ;).

Spring is amazing in Texas, because it is full of fun thunderstorms, breezes, and the heat hasnt gotten to the point of ridiculousness yet. So we have been taking advantage of it as much as we can! Between swimming in the Woodlands, to the Childrens Museum in Houston, days at the park, fun with friends, washing cars, and fresh fried catfish down near Kemah boardwalk….it’s been a fun month ๐Ÿ™‚ (I will let the million pictures tell more of the details haha)

We have had some happy days filled with friends and cousins and birthdays (Jefferson turned 3!!! Yay!) and some sad days…Adam’s grandpa Bertoch passed away at the end of this month. Adam was able to attend the funeral in Utah this last weekend. I am so grateful he was able to go and be with family and celebrate the life of his grandfather. I know he will be greatly missed.

All in all, closing out May and thankful for all the memories we have created ๐Ÿ™‚ 

It only gets hotter from here in Texas! Bring on the heat and the memories to create ๐Ÿ™‚

These are our Bits O’ Bertoch.

Cassie Bertoch

 

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Birthdays and Family and Wedding–Oh My!

I think it is safe to say that April has been a busy month for the Bertoch Clan! Both girls had birthdays, my mom came into town, Easter, and we went to a wedding! Lot’s of fun things to talk about and a million pictures! So I am going to break it up by topic for this blog.

Claire Madelyn Bertoch’s Birthday: April 11th

So Claire had her first birthday! My youngest baby is 1! I cant believe it! Boy that was a fast year. I had Claire in Lubbock and then a month later we traveled down here to North Houston! Such a blur! But this doll face girly of mine has been nothing but a joy to our family. She is already walking and running and pro status at climbing up stairs and slidingย off couches. She is pretty good at entertaining herself with toys and books. She is just happy and content to be hanging around us. She is extremely ticklish. All I have to do is poke her anywhere and she giggles. I love it. She has 6 teeth and I have officially weaned her off of breastfeeding. This was a different experience than with Bailey, because Bailey weaned herself at around 7 months and preferred the bottle. However, Claire looooved to nurse. She didnt take a pacifier like Bailey did, so I was essentially her pacifier haha. But I knew it was time. She was a champ. The first day or two it broke my heart when she would grab for my shirt, but I would give her cuddles and a sippy cup. She got over it super fast. Now she is drinking milk no problem (she refused milk when I was nursing her) and sleeping on her own without needing anything other than some good cuddles. At her 1 year check up she was 6% in weight and 26% in height…so she is a tiny thing for sure! But she has always been a teeny thing. She is healthy and happy and I cant imagine life without her. Bailey loves to introduce her to everyone we meet; “This is my little sister Claire!” and Claire follows Bailey everywhere she goes. I sure love my fuzzy hairedย 1 year old.

Bailey Marie Bertoch’s Birthday April 20th:

Bailey turned three!!! What?! When did that happen? I still remember being pregnant with her like it was yesterday! Bailey is my adorable bundle of love and attitude. She keeps me on my toes and is so tender hearted. She is in a stuffed animal phase, where she has to sleep with them and bring them with her in the car, and have them with her in the living room. It stresses me out at the thought of losing any of them! She has an owl, kitty, elephant, doggy, ย 2 pandas that she calls lambs (we cant convince her otherwise…we have tried many times haha) and her bunny. Whew. And she knows immediately if any of them is missing! She is so delicate and specific about taking care of them. She is such a little caretaker ๐Ÿ™‚ She also loves playing doctor with her doc mcstuffin doctor set. She checks our heartbeats, gives us a shot and follows with a bandaid, and takes our temperature. I have been blessed with her in the fact that she takes medicine like a champ. If I explain to her that the doctor just wants her to feel better, she will take it. No tears or fighting. Crazy right? Haha but she does have a stubborn side. She is very sensitiveย to emotions, so if she feels I am frustrated with her, she shuts down. Reasoning goes out the window. It has been a learning experience for the both of us, specially with me in keeping my frustrations in check. She can definitely be a bit bossy, and is learning that people dont always do what she wants them to do. (Get used to it girly!) But I adore everything about her. She loves playing with other kids and is concerned if any of them are ever sad or hurt. She includes Claire in things she is doing. She will always try at least one bite of anything new that I put in front of her, and has the BEST sense of humor.ย I sure love my curly headed 3 year old.

Since their birthdays are so close, and my mom was in town, we did a combined party! Super low key. We had a couple blow up pools in the yard (my neighbors rock and had theirs out too) I filled up some water balloons (that I pretty much used as target practice for the kids…) and they just played! Then we had cake and homemade pizza on a table out front. Loved it. We just had Bailey’s best friend Nora, who lives next door, and her cousins Brayden and Jefferson, and it was perfect. I hope all of them can be this low key! Haha I can dream right?

NANA WAS IN TOWN! My mom was in town for about a week! It was so awesome! I hadnt seen her since Thanksgiving and she hasnt seen where we lived since moving down to Houston. It was so fun showing her around and treating her to real Texas BBQ. (Spring Creek BBQ for the win!) We had some adventures!

We went to the Houston Zoo. Which of course 1. I got lost because I thought I would be cool and try the closed off HOV lane for the first time…not realizing that there was no way to get off of it until I’m already in downtown….learned that lesson. 2. The zoo had NO PARKING. It was a madhouse! I was getting so frustrated! We ended up parking all the way on the other side and crossed through a park and it was just nuts. But we made it and had a blast! The weather was perfect and the girls were in love with all the animals. They have a carousel near the giraffes, and the girls ย loved it. They rode it twice haha thanks to nana ๐Ÿ˜‰ And then there was a petting zoo section that Bailey was gaga over. I thought she was going to smuggle one of those goats home haha. I was surprised! I thought she would be afraid! But nope, she was brushing its hair and giving hugs and taking it personally when they would walk away from her haha. We also ended up running into Ally and John and the boys while we were there! Go figure! We live 5 minutes away and end up running into each other downtown at the zoo. Cant make that stuff up. haha.

We went to the Woodlands Waterway so we could see the koiย fish pond. Again, parking was an issue, so we had to go the loooooong way. Then we finally get to the pond and it starts to rain a bit. We hide under some trees but Adam was thinking it was going to dump on us. I brushed his concerns aside so we could still have fun….sure enough. 10 minutes later I think the heavens opened. We got drenched!!!! So what did we do? The only thing you can do..play in it! And they have a little splash pad, and since we were already wet, we had a blast in that. Fun memories. Ill never forget those images. I love it.
My mom was here for Easter too! Which totally snuck up on me between her visiting and the girls’ birthdays. My mom hooked us up with some delicious Easter candy since mine all went to the Church Easter egg hunt that I was in charge of the week before. Whew. Like I said…busy! But it was awesome because then we all went over to Adam’s parents house and had a big Easter dinner all together. So fun ๐Ÿ™‚

It was so hard dropping my mom off at the airport. But I am sure I will see her soon! The girls had such a blast playing with her and wearing her out haha. They definitely miss her. Visit again soon Nana! ๐Ÿ™‚


Wedding! The day after my mom left, we went out of town for the weekend to see Adam’s grad school colleague get married! It was seriously the most beautiful wedding ever. The vineyards were breathtaking and the weather was perfect! But it wouldn’t be a Bertoch event without something going on. So we had quite the weekend haha. Firstly, we drove the 6 hour drive after Adam got off work. We figured the girls would sleep in the car since we were getting in around midnight. NOPE. They slept on and off, but were awake when we pulled up to the hotel. We drove our car instead explorer because of course the check engine light is on. But it was good because we totally hit an armadillo on the drive up on accident…and it would have popped a tire in the explorer for sure haha. Oh and the girls still woke up at 6:30 the next day. At the wedding the girls were great! Until the actual 5 most important minutes of the ceremony…so I hurried like a quiet Tasmanian devil to bring my kids to the very back so they wouldn’t disrupt anything haha. But they were quite the little entertainers while we were with Adam’s cohort. Bailey danced the night away and Claire enjoyed watching Bailey dance haha. It was soooo great seeing everyone. And Allie was such a beautiful bride. I am so happy for them. ๐Ÿ™‚ So fun. But then when we got back to the hotel for the night and put the exhausted girls to bed…Bailey had night terrors most of the night. I have never experience anything like that before. It scared the crap out of me. She was screaming for me. Eyes open. Thrashing around. And I was right there trying to comfort her and tell her Momma was there..but she didnt recognize me and pushed me away afraid. Then she would go back to sleep. It happened 3 diff times. Broke my heart. I know it was because she was so sleep deprived. Poor thing. So that was fun. Then on the drive home we almost ran out of gas. Adam thought about getting gas, but it was a bit of a scary little town with a prison right in the middle of it…so I was like ehhhh next town. Well…there was no next town. It went to nothing. Then the gas light came on. Long story short…we went almost 50 miles before we found a town with gas and chugged there. Barely making it. The last 20 miles, inside the car it was dead silent haha. I knew it was my fault for not getting gas at the prison town dang it. But boy. Never a dull moment eh? Haha.