After a very long trip home from Asheville, NC, we are arrived home (to Baltimore) last night. Rather than going out and ringing in the new year, we spent an evening at Falls Road Animal Hospital. We said our goodbyes to Riley and began making arrangements for him. We came home feeling a little less whole and went to bed early. It was an exhausting day.
I'm not one for making resolutions, especially because resolutions are typically broken. We have a busy year ahead of us and so many things to look forward to. Rather than spout off a bunch of things I'd like to change this year, I'd much rather take a moment to reflect on the upcoming year.
Bella turns 2-years-old in April. Oh my goodness, where has the time gone? It seems like only yesterday we were planning for her arrival and we're getting ready to celebrate her 2nd birthday. I'm not sure if we'll be able to go all out this year, as I'll either be very pregnant or we'll have a newborn. Obviously we will celebrate Bella's birthday, but I won't be making decorations, designing invitations or anything too involved. Sorry Miss B! Perhaps I can hire a party planner (ahem, Stephanie Freedman...)?!?
Our second daughter will arrive sometime in early to mid April. We feel so much more prepared than we did with Bella, especially having the nursery 90% finished. We have ALL of Bella's clothes and toys so there isn't much to get. Although we sold our City Mini stroller and will be purchasing the City Select stroller. Poor baby girl is already get hand-me-downs from her big sister... Oh! And we need to finalize her name. I think we have chosen a first name, it's just a matter of agreeing upon a middle name.
Ian will have another busy year at work. He will be returning to a project he worked on last year, so he will most likely be working some crazy hours this fall. But, he is familiar with this project and will have a much better idea of what to expect this time. Perhaps even a promotion is on tap for this year? I'm not trying to rush things and as long as his compensation is good, he can remain in his same position, but he works incredibly hard and deserves some recognition.
My sister and brother-in-law are expecting the arrival of their son, Luke sometime within the next month. She's had many complications this pregnancy, so his exact date of arrival is up in the air. He could be here this week or he could be here in 3-4 weeks. Hopefully he can bake a little longer and avoid any complications or a lengthy stay in the NICU. Ian will be an uncle, I will be an aunt and Bella will finally have a cousin! I love the fact that our family is growing, slowly but surely.
Our friends Paul and Lisa and Rich and Kat are expecting baby girls in February. I'm so glad our circle of friends is expanding to the next generation, especially after being the only ones with a child for almost two years. I foresee many play dates and family get togethers in the near future. No more late nights out or bar hopping for this crowd! Haha!
Family time is going to be our top priority this year, as it has been for several years. I have a few ideas on how to spend some quality time together as a family, including vacations and staycations. Hopefully I can make some of these plans come to fruition, with the assistance of Ian and all of the grandparents. I'd like to visit friends in faraway places such as Nashville and Salt Lake City. I'd like to rent a beach house for a week and invite the grandparents to stay with us. I'd like to take more trips to Orlando this year, especially since Bella is in love with anything Disney. I'd also like to use our MANY annual passes to places such as the zoo, aquarium, science center and Busch Gardens to explore the great attractions our city has to offer. I know all of this sounds a bit much, especially considering we will have a two-year-old and a newborn, but I'm always up for a challenge.
2012 is going to be a very exciting year for our family. Only approximately 15 more weeks until we meet baby #2 and we have so much to look forward to. The end of 2011 was less than desirable, so we are really looking forward to all the fun and exciting things 2012 has to offer. So happy new year to all and hopefully 2012 will be just as exciting for you as it will be for us.
Ian, Kim, Bella & Baby #2