So I am basically smuggling a small watermelon at this point. I am 24 weeks (in normal people terms, 6 months) along and I am just getting bigger and bigger! I have been loving flowy, loose clothing for this pregnancy not only because it looks cute with the bump, but also for major comfort! We just had a doctor's appointment yesterday and she is weighing at a whopping one pound nine ounces. During our first anatomy scan, it was hard for the technician to see a few things so they had us do a redo... Which I'm totally okay with because that means we got to walk away with more pictures of baby girl and see her precious face!
I am loving every second of this pregnancy and I feel like my outfits are so much cuter now as crazy as that sounds. I adore the look of graphic tees paired with flowy, maxi skirts it has the perfect balance of care-free yet put togetherness I love. Also tying shirts up over the belly is a helpful way to show you are pregnant and not like you just ate a few too many slices of pizza. (Totally did, but now I have an excuse!)
Also, I never thought I would be able to find a romper fit this belly! I love rompers for the summertime and I'm so happy I found one that has plenty of room to grow. J and I had a date night to celebrate me finishing my Pharmacy Technician program. I love getting dressed up for our date nights together, and throwing on a printed romper is an easy way to look cute with minimal effort.
My current cravings are: water (yes, still iced cold!), applesauce, Cran Grape juice, milk, and chocolate. I've gained 15 pounds since getting pregnant, which totally makes sense because I'm so weak when it comes to eating! haha The nurse wasn't worried and said I am gaining a perfect amount, but still future Amy is cursing me now for all the sweets I'll have to work off.
I created a baby registry when I was at the end of my first trimester. I was immediately prompted to start adding items to it, and felt one sort of emotion: Overwhelment. So many different options for bottles, diapers, blankets, nursery themes, AH.
I'm glad they have so many different items on the market for baby and moms, but let's be real: it's insane. I wanted to be practical and just have the absolute must haves for baby and anything else I feel is needed I'll buy when it comes up.
The amazing thing about baby registries is it's a time for your friends and family to get together and give a gift to the one on the way. Registries are so helpful, because your family will be buying y'all stuff anyways, so this gives them a great guideline to follow and see what you are needing and what style you are going for. I personally registered on Target, but Walmart, Babies R Us, and Buy Buy Baby are great options too! I just noticed Target had the most average prices and weren't overpriced, and Walmart was kind of hard to navigate.
Bracelets: Target, Kohls, and Macy's
Lipstick: Mac "Viva Glam Miley"
While I have been on a maternity clothing high, I also wanted to invest in some great summer pieces I can wear pregnant or not! I am loving the current fashion trends, and didn't want to miss out on snagging a few for this summer and the years to come!
My husband and I just started a new budget plan and part of that plan is we only get a certain amount a month to spend on clothing. I made an order on Tobi after falling in love with this dress and ended up adding a few other pieces to my cart (they will be featured soon!). Y'all, their website is so hard to resist and I stayed on budget! I love how youthful and on trend everything is, I tend to dress boring sometimes so I'm excited to add some spice to my closet.
I love this dress because I feel so comfy and it's been challenging lately to fit into my normal clothing with this bump! This past Sunday I almost lost it after not being able to fit into my dress for church, I literally almost had a Hulk moment. This shift dress has so much room in it and it doesn't lift up in the front which is a major plus in my book!
I'm not sure why, but I have been feeling very boho in these past few months, and I'll be honest I'm not complaining. It's probably mainly due to me getting hotter easier and not wanting restricting clothes. Flowy, floral pieces have been my jam! I was kind of down about being pregnant during the heat of summer, but now I'm excited because I have found some great pieces that I can implement and stay fashionable and cool.
As a military wife, you learn very soon that never every holiday will be spent with your loved one. What I didn't really take into account, is I will also miss out on celebrating holidays with my family, especially my parents. This Mother's Day I wanted to do something special for my mom, because she is always sending me packages for every holiday! It's time we celebrate our moms! Whether that is your mom, sister, wife, friend, etc.; giving that mom in your life a gift will show them how much we love and appreciate all they do.
Now, I am no stranger to care packages and I thought this would be a perfect way to send my mom a gift even though she is thousands of miles away. I went to my AAFES on base and found the cutest American Greetings Mother's Day cards and gift essentials. They had an adorable stand and a huge selection of cards and gift supplies! It helped me establish the theme and I took the floral and bright colors into account when picking out her presents. This is an easy way to establish cohesiveness in your gift and act as an aid when finding the perfect gifts for mom!
This American Greetings wrapping paper was the first thing that caught my eye and was my inspiration when designing this care package! I decided to measure my box flaps and cover them in the wrapping paper, so when she opened it, she had a bright floral welcoming! Also, if you buy 3 cards, you can save $2 from 4/17-5/14. This is perfect to show the appreciation and love to all of the mom's in your life! Being on an Army or Air Force base means we are away from our families, so this is a perfect way to give the mom in your life a nice pick me up and gift for this holiday.
I found this little wall art piece and a light scarf that she can wear for the summertime. I added in a photo of me and J because she has been asking for one for awhile now (great and easy gift for any mom, they love pictures!). I then filled a cute Mom mug with chocolate that I will be bubble wrapping at the post office to keep it safe in shipping. I wrapped all of the gifts in this American Greetings tissue paper and gift wrap! I also found an adorable women's devotional, that just so happened to go with the theme extremely well, and a floral lotion.
While shopping for the perfect Mother's Day card, I stumbled upon this grandma one, and it was too perfect! This is my mom's first Mother's Day as a grandma and I wanted to throw in something special that would remind her of this special year and add in an ultrasound picture of her granddaughter. Adding special touches like this will give that personal feel and be great keepsakes for years to come. I love that American Greetings has a card for every mom out there, there are plenty of personal to you and unique cards to choose from.
For more Mother's Day inspiration and to
find the perfect card for the mothers in your life, check out
Sometimes the smallest acts can make the biggest impacts. I cannot wait for my mom to receive her care package! I posted this early enough for y'all to go out and buy the mother in your life some adorable American Greetings goodies and be able to recreate a care package too. I know how tough it can be to be states away from your mom, but never feel like you can't still treat her as you would if you were there with her.
Happy Mother's Day to all of the moms out there, we wouldn't be here without you.
Call me naive, but it never dawned on me until recently that our children will be growing up in a military home. And it scares me.
I fear the day my husband is deployed and our children are old enough to understand, but not fully grasp why daddy is leaving again.
I fear being a single mom for the days, weeks, months he is away and hope I can be a good enough mother.
I fear those days when I need to be strong for them and my husband, when I don't even feel strong enough for myself.
While I don't have all the answers, I do know there is a huge network for raising our children in this military lifestyle. 'It Takes a Village' could not be more accurate and I'm glad I have found a few resources to rely on. I feel better not being so alone in this, and while it may be a challenge, I feel better equipped to raise our children in this life.
FRG & Community Events
Family Readiness Group and any community events can be great outlets for children. Staying involved in the military community will not only be great for social interaction, but also because they are families and children going through the same situation. You can find more information on the individual branch's support groupshere.
All children can also utilize the youth center that is equipped with computer labs, gymnasiums, music and game rooms, and special field trips like swimming, bowling, or movies.
Books & Videos
Sometimes reading or hearing stories can be the best way to reach a child and have them understand the situation better. There are a variety of books and videos you can present your kids, and it's something a little more tangible than an activity. Below are a few books and videos you can purchase, fitting your family's current situation.
Military Youth Coping With Separation: When Family Members Deploy
Mr. Poe and Friends Discuss Family Reunion After Deployment
Sesame Street’s Talk, Listen, Connect: Deployments, Homecomings, Changes
A little bit of a step up from community events, there are several camps that our military children can take part in. This is a great way to make friends and to take their minds off anything that may be currently going on.
Kids 11-17: RV Camp For Kids
AFR & ANG Kids 14-18: Teen Leadership Summit
Armed Services YMCA: Operation Outdoors
Operation Free Ride: Horses for Heroes
Operation Purple Camp: National Military Family Association
Our Military Kids
Care Package for Military Children
Little Patriots Embraced Care Package
Brat Town Bugle (free book)
Free admission to Sea World or Busch Gardens
Free admission to National Parks
A Story Before Bed
When your loved one is deployed, creating a deployment center or wall can be a great visual for your children. This can include a countdown of some sort, what time it is where your spouse is, letters to their parent, and any pictures you want to include. This will keep your spouse very much alive and around even when they aren't, and give your children something to look forward to taking part in.
I love having the reassurance that I'm not alone in this. My husband is a 'military brat' and was raised moving around and dealing with his father not being home in his early years. It's no easy lifestyle, but I know that it is doable. To all the military spouses out there raising children, we got this. We may not have all the answers, things will break, our kids will miss our spouses more than anything, but this is just a small sacrifice we make for our families and this country.
What is your biggest takeaway from raising your children in a military home?
Thank you for stopping by The Strattons Blog! Here are snippets of my life, motherhood, and the military!