Come On In, Good Stress

Life comes in waves.  The good rolls in, then ebbs away.  The bad finds its way to your shores a little more aggressively, but still retreats to leave you in peace.  In fact, they even all often come in threes: the good, the bad and the waves.

Side note: I feel like all of my analogies are wave/ocean related lately.  Perhaps it’s that pesky beach town homesickness.

The past year or two have been filled with what feels like more stormy waters than peaceful ones.  But there have still been so many happy moments in between, or even at the same time.  At age 32, I still find myself surprised at just how complex life can be…and how ridiculously fast it is flying by.

Today, I looked through the photos on my phone and noticed just how many exciting moments have happened in the last month.  I realized that while I have been busy wading through tragic events, cancer recuperation and life stress on my blog, I haven’t shown you nearly enough of the JOY that has occurred around here lately.

The truth is that the waves have been crashing with such frequency that I have simply been overwhelmed.  And the end isn’t quite in sight yet.  My husband still has the culmination of grad school this May, he is the best man in two weddings, we have a condo we are putting on the market in D.C., and the boys have managed to accumulate a wide variety of gooey sicknesses.  We are wiped and stretched to the max and just plowing through until we get to the other side, but that is no excuse to not pause and acknowledge all of the exciting, all of the good, all of the happiness.

So here are some glimpses of the positive from the past month:

First of all, we were treated to a trip to Florida with my parents for Easter.  Which rocked, as you can see by Xavi’s display.  (ps. How is it possible this was only a month ago?!)

In addition to plenty of oranges, the trip included plenty of goofy swim attire all day, every day, since the beach was right outside our door.

Talk about moments you want to go back and relive, and relive and relive….

And what beats an Easter egg hunt on the beach?  Nothing.  Look how good those vibrant eggs look next to a tan! (There was also a drum circle involved in this trip, but no photos really do it justice.  Just know that it happened.  And it was wild.)

We returned and were pretty much immediately met with my 32nd birthday.  Everything bagels with alllll the fixins, a gift and a card? I am a lucky woman.  …who did consider investing in some arm-toning weights after looking closely at this card.  Nah.

That night we had a cake so delicious that I forgave my husband for forgetting that he promised he would make me Samoa cake from Pinterest.  Seriously, this cake was ridiculous.  Too good.

The next night my husband took me on a birthday date, just us.  Amazing French restaurant, 30 minute walk to Chelsea, Creme Brulee donut seed from Doughnut Plant and the new Ryan Gosling movie.  NYC romantic birthday perfection.

A few days later this little MAN started in a peewee baseball league.  Because apparently he is going to continue to refuse to listen to me as I beg him to stop growing up so fast.  Jerk.

The following weekend, we went to my in-laws beach house to have Xavi’s 3rd birthday party.  Because HE isn’t listening to me either! Jerk, number two. But you know what? This party photo isn’t from Xavi’s party.  Nope.  It is from the surprise party my husband threw me.  I have been aggressively pleading hinting for a surprise party for the twelve years we have been together.  At least someone is finally listening to my pleas, even if the boys aren’t!

So, the theme was Clam Bake (even though my husband is deathly allergic to shellfish) because he knows how much I miss the seafood and clam bakes of my childhood.  My mother-in-law made this unreal clam chowdah and my husband used huge pots to do steamers, little necks, corn, potatoes, kielbasa and shrimp over a grill. (Yes, shrimp aren’t part of a typical clam bake, but the man will literally die if he touches one, so I think it was strangely extreme love professing or something?) I was too busy with my face IN my plate to take any pictures, unfortunately.

I did manage to snap a photo of the giant cake.  That would be a chocolate cake with espresso filling and a caramel cream cheese frosting schlepped (secretly) all the way from Magnolia Bakery in NYC.  Good man.  Let me say, I felt extremely loved by everyone this night.

The next day, we did finally get to Xavi’s celebration and began with a round of Safari mini-golf.  Xavi’s typical natural athletic talent did not actually shine here – as you can see from his awkward grip on that club – but we all had a blast.

Then the whole family enjoyed the small arcade attached to the mini-golf course and collectively won enough tickets to get Xavi a water gun, a blue lollipop and the deadliest whoopie cushion you’ve ever seen.  Our class is showing, isn’t it?

His actual party included a ball pit that his Tia and Tio gave him, which we also filled with balloons.  There were sports-themed banners, hanging ball thingies, balloons, hats and tableware.  Xavi seemed satisfied by the number of balls, so all was good.  I am just hoping some year he will maybe let me try a new birthday theme.

I made him a carrot cake basketball cake and lemon baseball cupcakes, which he declared ‘super lemonaid-y’ which is his idea of a big compliment since he would be content if everything tasted lemony/lemonaid-y.  It was a great party, but I still can’t believe he had the nerve to turn three so quickly after being born.

Before we came back to Brooklyn, Carlitos decided to blow our minds (and break his mommy’s heart a tiny bit) by jumping on a giant two wheel bike and taking off without training wheels.  You know, NBD.  Because why shouldn’t life continue flying full speed ahead while I cling to it’s ankles, pleading for it to slow down.  (Note my husband sprinting after him in bare feet.  Nobody was prepared for him to take off so skillfully and quickly!)

Also before we left that weekend? Our bid was accepted on a HOUSE.  Yup, at this point we are now officially under contract and should be moving out to the ‘burbs around July 15th.  I still can’t believe it.

The most important thing about a house when you have two little boys…and a penchant for all things grilled outside?  A YARD!  The boys would like you to picture the super amazing swing set that will be at the back edge of this yard.  Ohhhhh yes.

Alright, if you stuck with me through this photographic novel, you deserve our BIGGEST and BEST recent news and event:  WE ARE HAVING A BABY!  I am twelve weeks and due at the beginning of November.  We are obviously really excited and now you can perhaps see why all of the other stress, events, important dates, etc. have been a little extra difficult for me in the past few months.  Life seems to find a way to make you understand that there is always a deeper level of fatigue you can reach.  Always.

I seriously can’t believe all of this occurred basically just in the past month.  Honestly, we don’t slow down at all until June and then more completely after the move.  But at least these are all happy events.  For this kind of stress and exhaustion, I am truly grateful.

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11 Responses to Come On In, Good Stress

  1. sims says:



  2. Annie's Mother says:

    You are awesome, annie. I don’t know how you do it!

  3. Monica says:

    Yayay!!! So happy for you guys!!

  4. Mary Dean says:

    Well I am totally, totally exhausted! That was quite a month. And the BABY!!! Yipppee! Now I have to warn you: #3 makes #1 and #2 the most incredibly easy children. #3s are the best, sweetest little beings until 11-ish. Then watch out! No matter I adore my #3 as you will adore your’s!

  5. Sims –


    My uncle, the teenage girl??? 😉


  6. Thanks, mom!

    Wait…you really want to know how we did that last one???

  7. Monica –

    Thank you! 🙂

  8. Mary –

    Thank you! Soooo much in a month, right?!

    And your #3 is pretty adorable. Hoping ours is too! 😉

  9. Anne says:

    Whew….. I am exhausted reading this……and soooooo happy about all of your happy news. A new baby, huh……wonder what you are wishing for 😉

  10. These photos totally capture the joy! So excited for your move out to the suburbs! And a baby – so very happy for you. xoxox

  11. Juanita says:

    I am so very happy for you,
    Muchas felicidades!!
    Bendiciones para ti y tu hermosa familia.

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