Becoming a mother has been more wonderful than I could have ever imagined. Yeah, I sleep a lot less, and of course, clean laundry sits in the baskets for longer than I would ever want, but you begin to see what's really important in life.

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When I was pregnant I always told myself that I   wasn't going to be the "type of mother" who let her house get out of order. Not that I ever judged, I just knew that "that way" wasn't going to be our lifestyle, at least, if I could help it.

Truth is, I am so busy! Wow. Like, busy busy bumblebee... times ten. I get up in the morning, play with my lil miss, pump for 20 minutes, do my {5 minute} make-up, get Claire changed and cleaned up and then hope I have enough time to do my hair. Four out of the five days, I go to work with a ponytail. Once again, I always said {when I was pregnant} that I would always go the extra mile to look my best. Uhhh... nope, that doesn't happen. I'm not entirely proud of it, but it is what it is people. Not to make excuses but, Claire's in a phase where she only wants me. Only me. So spending thirty minutes on getting myself dolled up isn't high on my to-do list. Mooshing and gooshing and cuddling with my lil miss is though, because it's not a matter of choice anymore ;)

Good news is that Claire is always show-stopping beautiful! When I'm home, she's always dressed in clothes and donning a matching headband. I'm constantly lathering her in lotion and brushing her hair {or lack thereof}-- something that I VERY rarely do for myself.

Along with how things work around the house, the way I view my life, in general, has undergone an extreme makeover.

After Matt fell, we experienced some pretty extreme financial hardship. He is, without a doubt, the bread winner in this home and him being out of work really hurt us tremendously.  To make matter worse, I was on maternity leave, which meant that I wasn't bringing home a single cent. None. Zip, zilch, zero.

But here's the silver lining... he got to go back to work. Yeah, was out of work for 5 months and only receiving 60% of his normal wages was a huge change in our monthly income {that's a lot of 'in's!!}, but that's more than others may be receiving while off of work.

Once again, there's good news!! Matt is back to work and because of his incredibly generous grandfather, we were able to stay afloat during all of this. If it weren't for him we would have had to dig into Matt's 401K to make our mortgage payments.  Scary, very scary, but once again, the fact that we had the money as a last resource was somewhat reassuring. We did learn that we need to save a little more than what we were saving prior to his accident. If you don't have long & short term disability, I would absolutely recommend looking into it. It's relativity inexpensive and it will save you tremendously if anything ever happens to your or your spouse.

Before Claire, we talked about all the things that we looked forward to. Most of the time, they were material things. For example, we really wanted to buy a boat this summer, and within the next five years, we hoped to purchase a small lake house. We looked forward to buying new vehicles and other ridiculously expensive, non-essential items. Now that our lil miss is here, we are focused solely on raising her well. We are already discussing which private school we want to send her to {we've chose to have her educated in a Catholic school} and how much we're going to save each month for her and her future sibling's college funds.

We have both completely reevaluated our relationship with God. We are doing our best to make certain that we set good examples for her so she can inherit the same love for our church and God that we both share. Going to church every.single.sunday is a MUST. To be completely honest, Matt's been going by himself for the past couple of months due to the crazy cold weather and the mighty awful flu that's been circulating.

We are 100% completely open to expanding our little family. Like today. We thought we would want to wait but after the lil miss, we are so excited to add babe #2 to our family! God has been so good to us and if we can just make some super awesome kiddos who will love him and spread His word, I think we will be doing well in His eyes, which is all that really matters. My mother-in-law always told us that "good people need to have more children". We feel that way now :)

Okay, if you read that, you are awesome and I love you! Here's a picture of the lil miss... yes a picture! Lucky you, I know ;)

It's her 5 month birthday today! And in those short {but mind blowingly fast} five months she has brought more light and love and joy and excitement into our home than we could have ever imagined, dreamed, hoped, or prayed for. 

We love you Claire Maire, our little angel.

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