Happy New Year (a little late, I realize). I am not going to lie, I wasn’t super sad to say goodbye to 2016, although not for the usual “this election cycle was terrible” or “so many celebrities died” reasons you see on social media.

2016 was an interesting and hard year for my family. It was our first full year as a family of 4 and living in a new place, after welcoming Little P in the spring of 2015 and moving from Colorado to Iowa and starting a new job that summer. When I look back on 2016, there are a lot of things I am really proud of and happy about. There are also a lot of things that frankly exhaust me when I think back.

At many times last year it felt like I was using all of my time and energy trying to juggle everything. Working full time. Parenting 2 little boys. Trying to figure out what I want to do for the rest of my life. Making our new city and house feel like home. Grappling with unexpected financial stresses. Dealing with professional and personal disappointments. On top of those normal struggles, Mr. Peas ended up having to travel extensively for a big chunk of last year, which meant I was often a solo parent. It wasn’t all bad. It wasn’t all great. It was just kind of hard. And I am not sad it’s over (although of course I try to be thankful for every moment as I am acutely aware how lucky I am to be dealing with these struggles instead of others).

Last fall when Mr. Peas and I finally had a chance to just sit down and relax, we spent a lot of time talking and thinking about what we wanted for our little family’s future. And it quickly became clear that (1) we wanted to do some things differently than we had in 2016 (more on that in a future post) and (2) even though we had no idea how we’d juggle it all, we wanted to add at least one more child to our family. And so we decided we would try for Baby #3, and around Halloween I took a pregnancy test and was thrilled/ terrified to find out we were expecting.

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Baby P is due at the end of June 2017. I am relieved to have survived the first trimester, which left me more exhausted and sick that I remember feeling with my prior pregnancies. I am grateful that so far this baby appears to be happy and healthy. I am thankful we had the chance to spend the holidays with our extended family, but I am equally thankful to be back home in (unfortunately freezing cold and gray) Iowa with a long to do list and a mostly empty calendar.

I am mostly really excited about what 2017 holds for me and my family. For the first time in awhile, I feel like I have some clarity about what I want for my future and am not just investing all my time and energy trying to get through today. Among many other things, I hope it involves a lot more writing on my personal blog and on Hellobee, so stay tuned for more frequent updates from the Peas family.

And please feel free to reassure me that we’re not completely insane for deciding to add a 3rd baby to our little, chaotic family.

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