A letter to my son on his first birthday

Happy 1st Birthday, Luca Leo!

Dear Luca,

Happy Birthday, honey! You’re one year old today. I knew that day and I know now that I was put on this Earth to be your Mommy. Nothing in my life makes me prouder or happier than you. Waking up to your adorable little face and fluffy hair starts each day off with love and light.

Before you arrived, we were never nervous. We were ready for you to arrive and change our lives forever – and boy, did you! When you first were put on Mommy’s chest the moment you were born, I felt like I was born too – my purpose in life became clear. My purpose is you! I don’t remember life before you, and what I do remember, it seems empty – because you aren’t in it!

Since that moment, you’ve always looked at life with big, brown eyes. Everyone always commented on what an alert baby you were! Mommy’s smart little baby. You looked around and took it all in. You always wanted to be part of the action – you’ll learn what FOMO is one day, because you have it!

In those first few months, we carried you and walked you EVERYWHERE. You loved being held – you didn’t like your stroller at first, you wanted Mommy and Daddy to carry you so you could look around. Mommy still puts you in her carrier so you can be close to her while you look at the world. I’ll always be there for you, honey.

Happy 1st Birthday, Luca Leo!

My favorite moments during the first few weeks and months of your life were when you’d fall asleep on me. Nothing is sweeter than your little cheeks squished on Mommy and your long eyelashes on your closed eyes. Your little parted lips and your breath that always smelt sweet. I breathed you in so much and will never forget your smell.

You love so many things! You love everything, pretty much! You love playing with balls, opening and closing things (like books!), climbing, crinkling paper and taking all of the wipes out of your wipes packages. You love the park and meeting other babies – and climbing up the slides. You were afraid of the swing at first, but now you love it and giggle the whole time. You love “brush, brush, brush” when we brush your teeth in the morning and at night. You love butternut squash, fruit, almond butter, and Mommy’s muffins. You love bubbles and Mommy’s water bottle. You love pulling Mommy and Daddy’s clothes out of their drawers. You love music and banging on anything like it’s a drum. You LOVE giving kisses, especially to your stuffed animals and right before you go to sleep. You love the water, especially when you visit Grammy and Poppy in Florida and go in their pool. You could stay in there for hours – and in the bath, too! You love your Aunt Feef and Uncle Beef, who live next door – and love strumming on Uncle Beef’s guitar when you visit. They love you, too.

Happy 1st Birthday, Luca Leo!

And most importantly, you love your Mommy and Daddy and we love you (more!) Your first words were “Mama” and “Dada,” after all!

There are some things you don’t like, but not many. You don’t like being left alone, but that’s okay, because we’ll never leave you. You don’t like avocado, which Mommy doesn’t understand, but that’s okay. We’ll teach you that it’s okay to have likes and dislikes, but to always stay open minded.

You’re just starting to walk, little boy, and we can’t wait for you to see life through that view. We’re excited for every stage and milestone. We’re so grateful to have you in our lives, Tootie (Poppy gave you that nickname!)

You’re the BEST, Luca Leo, and we love you! Happy Birthday, honey.

Happy 1st Birthday, Luca Leo!

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hi! 👋🏼 just checking in! twins are doing so well, their little personalities are really shining through. and they’re getting so big, they barely fit on my chest together anymore 😭😭 (rio is almost 11 pounds and sol is almost 10!) they’re sleeping almost 5 hours at night which gives me some rest in between nursing sessions (if I’m lucky enough that one of my older kids doesn’t wake up in between that time 🤦🏻‍♀️.) as for me, I’m coming out of the newborn fog 🙏🏼 the hardest part has been dividing my time between all FOUR of my kids, honestly. I’ll never get it right 😏 today I had my 6 week postpartum check up and I guess everything is back where it’s supposed to go 😅 because I got the green light to resume normal life again, but can we be honest…. with twin newborns, I’m in no rush to 🏋🏻‍♀️ or 🍆 , ya know? ...

the soup that broke the internet! 😜🥣haha, just kidding, but after posting this on stories, my DMs were flooded with, "share the recipe!" and then dozens of you made the soup solely based off my story videos (which is why I shared it!)⁣ 👏🏼

I'm still deep in the newborn fog to take proper photos and build an SEO-friendly blog post (it's an hours-long process), so I'm sharing it here in the meantime - just save it to refer back to! you're going to want to make this alllll winter long.⁣ ❄️

potato and brussels sprouts white bean soup w/ or w/o chicken sausage⁣ 👇🏼
serves 4-6

3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil⁣
1/2 red onion, diced⁣
2 garlic cloves, minced⁣
2 carrots, diced⁣
1 large celery rib, diced⁣
1 15-ounce can cannellini beans, drained and rinsed⁣
1/2 teaspoon dried rosemary⁣
1/2 teaspoon dried thyme⁣
4 cups vegetable broth (I'm using @bonafideprovisions and it's honestly a game-changer! code INSPIRALIZED for 15% off!)⁣
salt and pepper⁣
1 1/2 pound bag creamer potatoes, halved⁣
1 pound chicken sausage, sliced⁣
12 ounces shredded brussels sprouts⁣
shredded Parmesan cheese (I'm loving @foragerproject's vegan Parmesan shreds)⁣
red pepper flakes to garnish⁣

heat half the olive oil in a large pot over medium-high heat. add the onion, garlic, carrots, and celery and cook for 5 minutes or until onions are translucent. add the cannellini beans, rosemary, thyme, and stir. add the broth, 2 cups water, and season generously with salt and pepper. bring to a boil and boil for 5 minutes. use an immersion blender to blend the soup. add the potatoes, bring back to a boil, and reduce heat to a medium-simmer and let cook for 10 to 15 minutes or until potatoes are tender.⁣

while potatoes cook, heat the remaining oil in a large skillet over medium heat. add the chicken sausage and cook until browned. add the brussels sprouts, season with salt and pepper, and cook until sprouts are tender and chicken is cooked through. keep aside. if you're vegetarian, just simply omit chicken sausage.⁣

once potatoes are done, add the chicken and sprouts to the soup, stir, and serve. top with cheese and red pepper flakes.