Happy 6 months, Madison!

Lorin Marie Photography

It was just 184 days ago that our 8 pound, 3.2 ounce baby forever changes our lives. From her early morning entrance into the world on Cinco de Mayo, Madison has been lighting up our days ever since.

When people tell you, "Hold on tight because they grow up SO fast," they are so right. I can hardly believe 6 whole months have gone by. Even while staying home with Maddie, soaking up midday giggles, rocking her in the evening, afternoon playtime and bedtime baths, there is no freeze, stop time and stay in this moment.

Mama and baby girl | Lorin Marie Photography

So the best thing to do is make the most of each hour, each day we have together. I think time seems to move even more quickly when babies are this small because they are growing and developing at such astonishing rates.

While I could never fully express or put down words to completely describe our little baby girl, I can tell you the first you'll notice about her is her eyes - beautifully blue and dark but with a sparkle. She has big, baby doll eyelashes and is constantly smiling, giggling and laughing. Madison loves to move, squirm and kick. She is so alert, taking in her surroundings, holding new toys and shaking them, peering over our shoulders to see what's behind her and looking up at us and letting out an excited squeal during tummy time. There is so much personality oozing from such a small little girl!

Father and daughter cute photo | Lorin Marie Photography

As Madison turns 6 months old today (!) I'll be sharing photos from Months 1-5 on the blog in the coming days. Since she was born, I have intentionally spent less time in front of the computer and more time with her, trying to be present and enjoy every small, but important, moments.

Daddy and baby | Lorin Marie Photography

{Madison's Monthly Highlights}

Weight: Just over 17 pounds at her last doctor's visit (about 2 weeks ago). She's getting the chunky cheeks:)

Clothing: Still squeezing into 3-month onesies but wearing 3-6 months in most everything else. And shoes? Don't stay on her more than 5 seconds or so. She is a master shoe kicker-offer. Socks also fall into this category. Also, with her teething comes more drool on almost every outfit we put her in.

Sleep: She is sleeping well and through the night except when she is teething and restless or sick with a cold. Both really terrible to watch your daughter go through. Same goes for naptime - lately she's seemed to be in pain and poking at her gums right when she is also tired and ready to nap.

Eating: It's all good and she has a good appetite except when she's - wait, what's that over there? - distracted. As our friend calls her baby, she is also a major distracta-baby. We introduced some fruit and veggie baby foods several weeks ago and with the exception of avocado, she seems excited to try new things (yay!!!). Bananas are the top contender right now, hands down. Although now that Madison has grabby hands and is reaching for everything in sight, she also tries to grab the spoon. She's quite messy by the end but it's a good start to solids!

Personality: Full of joy, giggles, little sounds, tapping hands, kicking feet. Madison is what I like to call a verbal processor :) She loves to make new noises, pull at her feet (she recently discovered them!), bounce up and down, fly airplane with Daddy, look in the mirror, make noises back and forth with me. She gets somewhat stoic and more quiet in larger group settings but when it's just the two of us or when Daddy comes home, she lights up, ready to play, chat, squeal, laugh, grunt and bounce some more.

Likes: Scratching different textures (the tablecloth, for example, as I'm currently typing this), being thrown up high by Daddy, being sung to, splishing and splashing at bath time, the sound of snapping, holding and tugging at her crinkle books, having her photo taken (really!) and getting to see it after, when I stick my tongue out at her, being tickled, shaking rattles, shaking anything, dropping toys (her newest phase).

Dislikes: Being confined to her car seat (who can blame her?), teething, having a stuffy nose, when Mommy or Daddy sneezes (too loud), wearing shoes (she gets that from her mama), having eye gookies or boogers cleaned off, when bath time ends, being put down for too long (she'd rather be up high, looking around at everything) and missing out on anything fun.

What I want to remember: How she experiences something for the first time - watching me pour coffee, seeing the blinds open, feeling the ocean waves hit her little toes.


Sparkly gold baby bow | Lorin Marie Photography

Follow our daily adventures with #sweetmaddiegirlgram

Introducing Madison Elizabeth Fairweather | #MyFairweatherBaby | Newborn Photography

MyFairweatherBaby | Lorin Marie Photography

We're delighted to introduce you to

Madison Elizabeth Fairweather

Our precious baby girl Madison entered the world just shy of 42 weeks on May 5, 2015 at 2:27 AM. She is our little Cinco de Mayo baby! We're now calling the holiday Cinco de Madison, thanks to the suggestion of our sweet friend Amanda. And yes, there will **definitely** be some Mexican themed birthday parties in her future! Who doesn't love piñatas?! And baby sombreros! Which I began searching for the day we left the hospital. They **do** exist :) Party City for the win!

Madison Fairweather | Lorin Marie Photography

I went into labor in the early morning on Monday, May 4 & after about 18 hours of labor at home, Dean packed up the car & we drove the 15 minutes (which, at the time, seemed **much** longer) to the hospital. Madison was born about 3 hours later on Tuesday morning, healthy & pink & with adorable newborn wrinkly fingers & toes. (It didn't occur to me until we realized the date that we had delivered on a holiday. Truly a reason to fiesta!) She weighed 8 pounds, 3 ounces & measured 21.5 inches long, & we love her to pieces.

As my mother-in-law later asked, "Can you imagine life without her??" No we can't. At all :)

Must-have baby photos in the hospital | Lorin Marie Photography
Must-have baby photos  | Lorin Marie Photography
Baby yawn | Lorin Marie Photography

We are beyond blessed that the Lord would entrust us with this sweet baby girl & bring this diapered bundle into our lives!!! After she was born, I kept adding "She's so cute!" to everything she did - like "Ohh, she did a tiny sneeze - she's so cute!" & "Look, she's asleep. She's so cute!"

And that is still my consensus. I know, I know, I'm her mama so I'm supposed to say things like that buuut truth is I can't help it.

I am SO thankful for my incredible husband who was supportive & encouraging the whole time! Dean pushed on my back over & over ... & over & over during my hours of back labor, made sure I stayed hydrated, kept me calm, prayed for us & read the Scripture verses we had printed (Val Marie's labor verses). He was such a wonderful coach & I cannot imagine having gone through labor & delivery without him beside me :)

Hospital newborn photos | Lorin Marie Photography
Baby swaddle | Lorin Marie Photography
Must-have hospital baby photo  | Lorin Marie Photography

And we are really grateful for the wonderful Bradley Birth classes we took for 12 weeks beforehand (if you're in the Columbia area, look up Ruth Glowacki. She is a fantastic teacher!). They focused on preparing us for what to expect throughout a natural labor & delivery as well as teaching Dean how to be my labor coach. We joked during my pregnancy that he would have to wear a referee jersey, carry a clipboard & blow his whistle at the hospital to make sure everything went OK. He ended up leaving the ref gear behind but I still think it would have been fun...

Newborn layette outfit | Lorin Marie Photography

One verse I had been mediating & reflecting on during my pregnancy that really brought me comfort was John 16:21, which says:

"A woman giving birth to a child has pain because her time has come; but when her baby is born
she forgets the anguish because of her joy that a child is born into the world."

That is the best way I can describe the feelings I experienced after birth. Good-bye, painful contractions. Hello, beautiful little daughter!

Newborn baby girl | Lorin Marie Photography
Daddy kissing baby | Lorin Marie Photography
Newborn pink mittens | Lorin Marie Photography
Newborn hospital photos | Lorin Marie Photography

{July Goals}

Our Fairweather Baby | Lorin Marie Photography

'Be a branch snapper off-er in a world where people are in the thick of the woods."
Carrie Grace

Earlier this week, I read an incredible encouragement email from the wonderful creator of The Kindness Box, Carrie Grace. It's so like God to have His perfect timing, right? These past few weeks I've been struggling with feeling & showing love & kindness to others. This often-tired new mama was trying in my own strength, & on my terms, to love others...& not quite getting it right.

Then I read Carrie's email:

"Perhaps that is why we aren't called to go at this life alone. Maybe God & others who reflect Him to us are tiny branch snappers...I think we are called to make getting out of the woods easier for one another. That we are supposed to speak truth in love as a means to get others into the clear.

Talk about a change in perspective! In the midst of being in what I'll call an un-kindness rut, God met me where I was & reminded me of the bigger picture - it's not about simply doing kind things or speaking with kindness toward others, it's about snapping those little branches off for those He's put in my life. It's about being willing to walk through the woods with them. As Carrie put it, "It's about staying when the woods are dark & cold & being willing to sit in the hard waiting period with others. And it's also about refusing to let someone stay."

Snap, snap, snap.

July Goals

>> Love & respect Dean well
>> Be an intentional mama & point Madison to the Lord
>> Commit new verses to memory
>> Road trip to Nashville!!!
>> Read The Best Yes & go through the Bible study at church
>> Take a walk with Madison 1x a day
>> Review our budget & plan for August
>> Lovingly serve our LMP clients
>> Treat others with an abundance of kindness

P.S. A first family photo with our little girl Madison! Taken by Casey Edwards Photography. (See My Fairweather Baby posts for more).

My Fairweather Baby | Nursery Reveal

Modern girl nursery | Lorin Marie Photography

Drum roll, please ... And now, without further delay, our precious baby girl's nursery reveal!

I shared my inspiration board with y'all a couple months back & praise the LORD, we finished putting it allll together a few weeks ago. I know Hubby is glad that my extreme, constant nesting phase has calmed down a bit :)

My desire was to create a beautiful place where our little girl can sleep peacefully, we can rock & cuddle together, read stories, pray & also be visually stimulated by the bright colors, textures & shapes. I just adore how it all came together! We are so excited for our little one's arrival!

White girl nursery | Lorin Marie Photography
Rifle Paper Co You Have My Heart card | Lorin Marie Photography
Pink and gold baby girl nursery | Lorin Marie Photography
Nursery stuffed animal toy bin | Lorin Marie Photography
White lace nursery curtains | Lorin Marie Photography
Dark brown wood changing table | Lorin Marie Photography
Grey nursery glider | Lorin Marie Photography
DIY headband and bow holder | Lorin Marie Photography
Pink tissue paper poofs | Lorin Marie Photography
Sparkly crib banner | Lorin Marie Photography
Sparkly girl nursery inspiration | Lorin Marie Photography
Baby girl nursery | Lorin Marie Photography
Nursery hair bow display | Lorin Marie Photography
Vintage baby nursery | Lorin Marie Photography
Nursery shelf | Lorin Marie Photography
Sparkly crib banner | Lorin Marie Photography
Bright baby girl nursery | Lorin Marie Photography
Girl nursery inspiration | Lorin Marie Photography
My Fairweather Baby nursery reveal | Lorin Marie Photography
Emmy Grace Budquette Nightfall crib sheets | Lorin Marie Photography
Our Fairweather Baby Nursery | Lorin Marie Photography
Bright pink nursery chair | Lorin Marie Photography

BIG News for the New Year!

Outdoot maternity portrait

As you can hopefully see from the bump above, that's not just a burrito belly or an extra piece of chocolate cake. Drum roll, please ... the Fairweathers are becoming a party of 3 this spring!!!

Baby Girl Fairweather's debut: April 2015!

We could not be more thrilled with this incredible blessing the Lord has brought into Dean & I's lives! It has been an eventful, exciting journey so far & we still have a ways to go before our little one - My Fair Baby as my mom is affectionately calling her - arrives (get it? That's for you, musical fans :) ).

Outdoor maternity portrait

I'm 23 WEEKS along as of today & about to turn 24 tomorrow. It's so funny how when we first found out we were pregnant, it felt like YEARS waiting for 12 weeks to roll around for our first doctor's appointment! And it seemed to take so long to wait to share the good news with everyone & for a baby bump to appear!

Practically every day I'd tell Dean, "Look, I'm bumping!" He would usually smile & be like, "Sure you are" when barely a smidgen of a curve had become visible. Now that bump isn't going anywhere anytime soon & I'm definitely bumping every day haha. And, we're over halfway there to meet our sweet little girl woo!

Couple's maternity announcement

God has so showered us with an abundance of prayers & support from our family & dear friends over the past few months. We can't thank everyone enough for the encouragement, phone calls, emails, advice & gifts that been shared with us! And that's not all we have to share...

The Fairweathers have relocated!
Falls Church, VA --> Columbia, SC

In addition to adding to our family, we've also added a move/new job/new home into the mix. After much prayer & discussion, Dean accepted a new position with an awesome construction firm in Columbia just 2 weeks ago. Was it a a lot to leave our church, community, work & comforts behind for a new city where we know very little & don't have any close friends? And to not resign our townhome lease & sleep on the couches/pull-out beds of dear friends for 6 weeks as Dean went through his job search? You betcha.

But God :) Two of the very most powerful words. He allowed all things to work together for His good throughout the whole process. He affirmed & reaffirmed our faith in Him alone day by day. Although right now it still feels like we're on a trip & should be headed back to NoVA any day, this fresh new season is filled with so much peace & joy. We can't wait to pour out our lives here in this new town, which does happen to be close(r) to both sides of our family! Yay for visits to & from grandparents :)

Black and white maternity portrait

Now is the start. The words of this song have been playing over in my head. We're right where we're supposed to be. Take comfort in knowing you're exactly where the Lord wants you to be, friends! Here's to an incredible new year, walking each day by faith & not by sight.

Since we're still getting settled into our new home & I'm nesting like crazy (ask Dean!), LMP won't be accepting any new inquiries for weddings or portrait sessions in Northern Virginia or SC for now. I'll start accepting new clients in the early spring for mid-fall dates, as my planned maternity leave will be April-August.

P.S. A shout out to my awesome sis for taking these photos!