Welcoming Ramona

I've been meaning to write about Ramona's birth story for a while now, but I just haven't been able to find the right mindset to sit down, focus, and make it happen. I keep waiting for that magical hour or two when my house is quiet and everything is checked off my to-do list. It turns out, my to-do list is never-ending, and my house is never really quiet except for a few hours in the middle of the night. And you all know I'm not about to willingly give up a single minute of sleep. So, I added this assignment to my to-do list last Monday, and here I am a week and a half later, finally sitting down to do it.

I've always loved childbirth. Call me crazy all you want-- but I love it. I love that it pushes me and challenges me. I love to be surrounded by family. And most of all, I love the powerful feeling in the room as we welcome a precious baby into our world.

Because I was induce with both Gunner and Penelope, I wasn't sure what to expect this time. I was really really really hoping to go into labor on my own a day or two before my due date. (My due date was September 30th) That would maximize the amount of time my parents and Bethany would have with her.  But after my 39 week check up on Monday (9/25), still not dilated, barely effaced, I was feeling very discouraged. The doctor couldn't even recommend me for induction because my body just wasn't showing signs of labor.

I was kind of heart broken. I was sure my dad and sister would have to leave before the baby was born and that would have been devastating for all of us. They kept telling me they wouldn't be upset and they were here to see me (liars) but I just hated the thought of them coming all the way out here and not even getting to meet the baby.

So, we walked. We ate spicy food. My mom rubbed pressure points. I ate pineapple. We did ALL the other things to start labor. Nothing. Bethany arrived on Wednesday evening and we decided that if my body didn't want to have this baby yet, we'd enjoy a quick day in New York City on Thursday. I lined up a babysitter for the kids and we packed our day bags. But I started to realize I hadn't felt the baby move much that morning. So I laid down to do my kick counts and make sure I could feel her. I was feeling movements but they were very subtle and not very often.

We decided I'd better call my doc and get checked out before we went into the city. They hooked me up to an NST, which showed that her heart rate was perfectly healthy. But an ultrasound showed my fluid was a little low, and for some reason my blood pressure was very high. I normally have VERY low blood pressure during pregnancy. So, the high blood pressure was concerning. They tested my urine and found a trace of protein. Which, when combined with high blood pressure, could be a sign of preaclampsia.

After weighing all the options, my doctor decided it'd be a good idea to head over to the hospital to be induced. He did leave the final decision up to me. But with his recommendation and my readiness to get this baby here, I decided to give up my dreams of going into labor spontaneously. As we drove home I called Zack and could barely explain what was happening. While I was ready to have the baby, I wasn't actually prepared to go do this today. We were just planning a whole day in the city and then all of the sudden it was like "Nope! Baby time!" and I was like, "Huh?!?"

Thankfully, I'd already lined up a babysitter for the afternoon, (THANK YOU DIANNE!!!) and she was willing to stay with the kids while we were at the hospital. Unfortunately, she was also supposed to be my birth photographer (maybe next time!) but I'll forever be grateful that she dropped everything and stepped in to take care of my kids during that time.

So, after we ran home to grab the hospital bags and get the kids settled with Dianne, we grabbed a big fat Chipotle burrito (you know, for energy) and headed to the hospital.

We arrived around 3:30 PM. The nurses came in right away to draw blood, and place and IV. But we didn't actually see my doctor until 6 PM. We asked to talk to her several times, and they kept telling us they'd go find her. But never actually brought her in. So we spent the next few hours catching up on my Hulu queue and playing cards. When Dr. Coca finally came in she let us know that it had been a very hectic day on the labor and delivery floor (including TWO sets of twins!) She suggested we order dinner before I started pitocin because I wouldn't be able to eat again until after delivery. So we ordered the most amazing pizza and garlic knots from a local pizza place.

In that moment I was so happy to be surrounded by my mom, my sister, and Zack. The most important people in my life. And they were all there to support me, to cheer me on, and to help me welcome my baby into the world. We ate my favorite food and laughed and tossed around baby names. (My top pick was Violet. Zack's was Eliza. My mom's was Cable. Bethany's was Clementine.)

I started pitocin just before 7 PM and it wasn't long before I was ready to try to get some sleep. The contractions were becoming regular, but still not too intense. I thought I'd probably try to rest in case we had a long night ahead of us. (And we did.) After about 2 hours (9 PM) on pitocin my doctor came in to break my water and speed things along. I was disappointed to find out I had only dilated to a TWO. Penelope was born before I'd been on pitocin for two hours.

After Dr. Gallousis broke my water, my contractions immediately intensified, and I was hopeful that things would move quickly. Within an hour (10 PM), I was done laughing and having a good time. The pain was getting intense. I was bouncing on a labor ball. I was trying all kinds of positions to get comfortable and it just wasn't working. My contractions had gone from "intense" to "OMG" So, I asked the doc to check me. I was feeling a lot of pressure and I was sure things were moving along.  And guess what! I was dilated to a THREE. You guys!!! I wanted to cry. I started to prepare myself for an all-nighter, so I asked for the anesthesiologist to come work his magic.

By the time he arrive (10:45 PM), I started to puke. Except, I feel like the word "puke" just doesn't adequately describe what was happening. (Strangely, no pictures of this moment. Haha) They quickly grabbed a bed pan for me to puke in. I filled that one, so they grabbed another. I unloaded every ounce of pizza and burrito into those bed pans. I probably even threw up all those pieces of gum and watermelon seeds I swallowed as a kid. I was sitting on a ball, leaning over onto Zack's lap. He was so sweet and chill about getting splashed will all the nastiness. But he kept cracking jokes trying to cheer me up. I was burping a lot and he couldn't stop laughing thinking about telling Gunner about my pizza burps... I almost killed him in that moment.

Once my stomach was COMPLETELY empty, I was prepped for the epidural. My sister suggested they check my cervix again, just to be sure. But the nurse said they'd do it after when I was more comfortable. They asked everyone to leave the room. But, I really felt like I needed Zack to lean on. I had to push to keep him in there, but they finally agreed. I'm so glad I did that. I was in A LOT of pain at this point and I was really struggling to relax. I needed consistent reminders to breathe. The epidural was placed quickly and  and the anesthesiologist promised relief within minutes. I almost felt relief for like 1 minute. But then I didn't. The relief didn't come. My pain intensified and I started to get angry that my epidural hadn't worked AGAIN. (This happened with Nella.) I honestly felt like I'd be experiencing this pain for the rest of my life. I kept saying "I want this to be over NOW."

Considering how slowly I'd been dilating I was honestly terrified that I'd be in this much pain for 10-12 more hours. I could not have sustained that. I began to panic. I couldn't steady my breathing. Laying on my side was the only position I could bear. The nurse repeatedly asked me to roll to my back, but I honestly couldn't. They put an oxygen mask down near my face and during each contraction I leaned into it to get a deeper breath. The anesthesiologist stuck around waiting for my relief to come. He said to me, "I'm really not satisfied with the amount of pain you're still experiencing." and I was like ME EITHER!!! He eventually administered some pain medicine through my IV. (11:30) It was then that I could relax enough to not scream during my contractions. Although, I did feel pretty foggy and wasn't able to talk or open my eyes. My contractions were getting so close together that I could barely distinguish between them.

(11:43) I was feeling immense pressure and almost thought I could feel the baby crowing. I was barely able to get the words out. The nurse asked me to roll onto my back, but I refused. (I know. So rebellious of me.) They lifted my leg to check me and said, "OH! Theres her head!" I was like, "Yeah. I know." Except I wasn't exactly in a sarcastic state of mind so I didn't say anything.

What I thought had been normal labor pain, was actually the baby transitioning. AKA, entering the birth canal. For those that haven't been through childbirth, transitioning is often considering the most painful part of childbirth, but it is also a sign that the baby is near!

The same thing happened with Penelope. I was able to endure the normal pains of childbirth, but once I started to experience the transitioning, I asked for the epidural, thinking I still had several hours of contractions ahead of me. But, because I received the epidural as the baby was entering the birth canal, it gave me no relief. (Although, I still believe the anesthesiologist placed it incorrectly last time.)

They called in my doctor (11:48 PM) who, again, asked me to roll onto my back. and I AGAIN refused. So, on my side, with my leg pulled up almost straight into the air, I "breathed" that baby out in a push and a half.

At 11:50 PM Ramona Mae Dupaix entered the world at 8 lbs 3 oz and 23 inches long. She was perfect and healthy, and had quite the set of lungs on her. She was immediately placed in my arms, and although I was still in a fog, my pain was completely gone. In fact, I was in a state of utter bliss. She stared up at me and I looked into her eyes and asked "Who are you?" While she felt familiar, curiosity washed over me about who she is and who she is going to be.

I looked up at Zack, delighted to see his "ugly cry." I don't get to see it often, so this was a real treat. I couldn't help feeling extremely grateful for a husband who not only works hard to provide a wonderful life for us, but is my constant ally and perfect match. I wouldn't choose anyone else (not even Justin Timberlake) to make and raise babies with. I am so thankful that my children have come into the world with Zack as their father.

I looked around and saw my mom and Bethany and I felt a kinship with Ramona. She is so lucky to be the younger of two sisters. And similarly, a kinship with my mom, the mother of two daughters. My heart almost exploded as I imagined myself and my daughters in 25 years, side by side welcoming a new baby to our world. I can only hope that experience will be just as sweet as this one. I sincerely pray that my daughters love and cherish one another the way my sister and I do. And even more deeply, I hope they share with me, the bond we have with our mom.

I cannot adequately express what a blessing my mom was throughout labor. I have looked for the words over and over again, and always come up empty. I cry every time I think about it. She was absolutely heaven sent. She knew when to laugh, and when it was time to get serious. She knew just the places to rub to help me relax. Just the words to say to bring my focus back. Is it just me, or is there nothing in the world as comforting as a mother?? Knowing my mom had been through this 4 times and she knew the pain I was experiencing made me trust her when she told me I could do this. There is no one else in the world I would choose to have by my side through labor.

I am overwhelmed with gratitude for the many people in my life who were there for me throughout my pregnancy, childbirth, and the weeks following. When I reflect on the strength of my support system I feel extremely blessed. Because of the wealth of love in my life and the people around me, all three of my pregnancy and childbirth experiences are among the most sacred, most cherished days of my life. And welcoming Roe was certainly the cherry on top.

XX Sally

P.S. I'm saving the story of how we chose her name for another day. This post was way too long to add that long story. Haha So stay tuned for that.


Dupaixs Do Italy: DAY 1

I've been wanting to write down all our memories and experiences from our trip this spring. I thought it'd be fun to document them on the blog, in case any of you are looking for recommendations or ideas.

I promise the rest of the posts from this trip will be full of photos!! 

The Adventure Begins...

After traumatizing goodbyes with the kids and a pretty pathetic episode of sobbing into my Crunch Wrap Supreme on the way to the airport, Zack and I checked in at JFK and found ourselves sitting at our gate with more than enough time to spare. It was pretty shocking to see how effortlessly we made it through security without kids and strollers and backpacks and sippy cups. Since Gunner was born I've only flown without the kids a handful of times, and every time I'm shocked by the difference!

We attempted to sleep on the plane, but between Zack's excitement and my lingering pain at leaving the kids behind, we barely slept a wink. I have to admit, I didn't even feel an ounce of excitement until we touched down for our layover in Portugal and by the time we touched down in Rome I was downright giddy. I couldn't believe we were actually here, actually doing this!!

Our plan was to head directly to the Amalfi Coast, so we grabbed our (TINY) rental car and hit the road. Driving in Italy was an experience I'll never forget. And to be clear, when I say I'll never forget driving in Italy, what I actually mean is I'll never forget riding shot gun while Zack drove in Italy.

The freeways were full of tiny cars and mopeds. Even the trucks were miniature. The rare SUV looked ginormous. As we left the city behind, and the Italian country side opened in front of us, I put on my usual road trip playlist, which consists of John Denver, Cat Stevens, and America, which seemed so extremely out of place in this context.

The countryside was as quaint and beautiful as you'd imagine. The hills rolled on forever, dotted with a house or vineyard or two. (why didn't i take any pictures of this?!?)The drive was relatively uneventful until the sun went down and we saw flames climbing the mountain ahead of us. As if I wasn't anxious enough about the windy roads ahead, a car had crashed into the mountain and gone up in the flames. Traffic was stopped in both directions while the tiniest little firetruck maneuvered its way to the crash.

This was just the beginning of the scariest part of our journey. The last 18 miles were... terrifying, to say the least. The roads wound and weaved their way treacherously through the mountains, and eventually to the coast, where they narrowly curled along cliffs, the waves of the Mediterranean crashing below. I thought it probably would have been less scary during the day, but I was wrong.

We pulled up to our hotel just 5 minutes before the hotel restaurant was scheduled to close and literally RAN down so we could eat before bed. (We were STARVING) After we sat down and ordered our appetizer, Zack realized his wallet was missing. He went back to the car and searched while I franticly emptied our backpacks onto our beautiful, white linen table cloth. It was no where to be found. I was sick. I couldn't believe we hadn't even been in the country 24 hours and we'd lost a wallet.

As the appetizer (a tomato and buffalo mozzarella caprese salad, of course) arrived, my phone buzzed with a Facebook message from a stranger. "I found a wallet that I believe belongs to your husband on the street in Amalfi. I'm staying at the Hotel IL Nido... I'm going to turn the wallet over to the front desk." Are you kidding me JOSE??? I could have cried. In our rush into the hotel, Zack must have dropped the wallet, and the nicest stranger imaginable picked it up.

Anyone could have found it. But an honest, kind, man named Jose found it and not only turned it in , but went out of his way to find us on Facebook and make sure it got back to us. I literally cried. You know, you hear a lot of cautions and warnings about traveling overseas. The pick-pockets, the thieves, the scams. Believe me, I'd read up on ALL of them and was more than sufficiently skeptical. But, this experience, in the first few minutes of our trip, really set my heart at peace. And on our first night in Italy, I fell asleep knowing that there are still a lot of really good people in the world.


CLICK HERE to watch my instastory from Day 1.


Bruschetta Burgers

Whenever people ask me what my favorite part of Italy was, I struggle to come up with something I enjoyed more than the bruschetta. I mean the museums and history were great and all. But those fresh tomatoes... (I'm drooling.)

"Bruschetta" is actually just grilled bread, brushed with olive oil and garlic. But, in America its pretty much always paired with a fresh tomato and garlic mixture. So, if you find yourself in Italy, make sure you order Bruschetta al Pomodoro.

They aren't lying when they say the food is fresher in Italy, and the tomatoes were no exception. They were bright and acidic; some were so sweet I could have sworn they added sugar. I'm not going to lie to you. I'm kind of a bruschetta expert at this point. It was the first thing I ordered when we arrived, and we had it with every single meal. (I'm not kidding.)


I Took a Two Week Break from Motherhood

I took a little break from full time motherhood this month while we went on our big Euro Trip without the kids. One of my fears in going was that I might realize that I prefer living my life without the pressures and responsibilities of caring for two kids. What if I went on this trip and realized that I liked my life better without them? Kind of morbid right?


Dock a Tot

Originally when I contacted Dock A Tot about trying their product, my intent was to use it as we transition Penelope from crib to toddler bed. But then Zack surprised me by planning a trip to Europe for later this month without our kids and we couldn't leave our parents with all the struggles that come from a newly trained big girl bed sleeper.

So, we've postponed the bed transition until after our trip. But, I feel like all this time getting her comfortable in the dock has been extremely useful; and will, eventually, make the transition easier.

Here are my top three favorite things about the Dock A Tot Grand:


Because my Husband is Here.

Can I tell you something about my husband?

He is the best.

Don't get me wrong. He drives me insane sometimes. And sometimes he forgets to take out the trash. And sometimes he makes me stay up late watching scary TV shows. Listen, I'm not saying he's perfect. But, you know what he's really great at? Being here. 

Last night I was frantically running around my house cleaning/preparing for a friend's birthday party. Zack was happily loading the dishwasher just as I'd asked. And my kids were...well let's just say they were complicating things.

For every one thing I put away, they pulled three things out. They were pulling on the vacuum cord and whining about needing this, that, and the other thing.

After the long day I'd had with them, and with the mounting pressure of guests arriving any minute, I lost it. I mean I really lost it. I screamed at my children with just about all the energy I had left. I told them to go play in their room and get out of my way and to leave me alone.

I'm not proud of this moment. In fact I cringe at the thought of even sharing it. But it needs to be noted that I really lost my cool. And both kids were terrified and traumatized. But I was so frustrated and frantic that I just walked away and got back to cleaning.

Before long I noticed they weren't crying anymore and went to see what they were doing. Zack was quietly comforting them and reminding them that Mommy had an important night and they needed to let me clean.

Then he caught me totally off guard when he asked them if they'd like to help him do the dishes. My kids are still young enough to think that's a treat. So he stacked the stools up next to him and the three of them stood there scrubbing and rinsing and having a grand old time.

I was so thankful that he was here. In this moment when I had lost control of my temper and had hurt my children's feelings, I was so glad that he was there to comfort them; to hug them and reassure them. I was so glad that instead of criticizing me, he reminded my children that mommy has needs too. And I was SO thankful that instead of telling them to stay out of the way (like I did) he included them in the work that needed to be done. It didn't make the dishwashing process any faster, but it kept them happy and occupied, and that made my work easier.

Last night, and pretty much every night, I am so thankful that he is here. Like really here. 

It's because he's here that I know I don't have to prepare the house (for a girls night that he's not even invited to) on my own. Because he's here, he's aware of my needs and of our children's needs and I know I can "tap out" if  I need to. And because he's here in the moments when I can't see or think clearly, he is able to pick up my slack, and make up the difference. I find an immense amount of comfort in that.

He could stay late at work. He could work on projects during dinner. He could be a lot of places physically and mentally. I am so thankful that he's here.  

Having Zack home by dinner has always been a priority for us. We have made our education and career decisions as a team, and based on what will be best for our family. We both make sacrifices to ensure we are able to give the very best of ourselves to our children and to each other. Individually, we are far from perfect. But what makes it work, is that when one of us fails, the other is here and willing to pick up the pieces. 

I know having a dad who is home for dinner every night isn't a possibility for everyone. Moms and dads make huge sacrifices to provide for their families. And what works for us, doesn't work for everyone. I would never assume to know what would be best for anyone else's family.

But after that ugly moment last night, I was so thankful that he was here. 


P.S. What helps you guys to be present with your family? I'd love to hear your experiences!


Thick & Chewy Ginger Molasses Cookies

Let me start off with a little secret about these cookies. I had never had them, and never had any interest in trying them (how gross does molasses sound??) , until someone requested them for their birthday treat. So I gave them a shot, with extremely low expectations. The first pan came out of the oven and I bit into one as soon as they had cooled enough and I was hooked! That was all it took.

So these are kind of a traditionally Christmas cookie. But when have I ever cared about traditions?? Never. (Not true.) So, I make these all year round. Literally. And guess what--No one complains. So there. You have every right to make these delicious chewy, spicy, (christmassy) cookies whenever you darn well please. If anyone gives you trouble, give them a cookie.

You'll find a lot of recipes for this type of cookie out there. And most of them will have almost identical ingredients. But there are a couple little technique changes that will make a big difference.


How To: Save Money Online

Disclosure: This post is sponsored by Groupon Coupons. But as always, all opinions are my own. 

I can't be the only person who is addicted to online shopping. Right? I mean you stay home. You stay in your PJs. You turn on Disney Junior for the kids. And you shop in peace. The convenience factor is off the charts. Real Talk. But did you also know, there are tons of ways to save online that you can't necessarily do in stores. So, here are my tips and tricks for saving money online!

Groupon Coupons

I ALWAYS, ALWAYS, ALWAYS, use a coupon or promo code. I'm not kidding. I don't check out online until I have found a coupon code. My favorite place to find codes is Groupon Coupons. Groupon isn't just a great place to find killer deals on products and travel. They also have an entire section of their site dedicated to collecting online promo codes for all your favorite sites. We're talking thousands of websites. (Including, Target, Gap, Priceline.com, Anthropologie, Best Buy and so many more.) They even have a Student Discounts section for all of you college students!

My favorite part is that you can search by category. So when I'm looking for the perfect gift for a loved one, I just click the Flowers & Gifts  or Gift Certificate category and I'm taken to a list of the internet's best deals on flowers and gifts.

Next time you're ready to check out online, make sure you search Groupon Coupons first!

More Tips Below


Words of a Stranger

Have you guys ever heard a stranger say something in passing and have it completely change how you feel about your life?? I have. But let me start from the beginning.

My iPhone sucks. Its been randomly shutting down regardless of battery percentage. It won't turn on until I plug it in. And then, of course, when it boots up it still has 73% battery. After being tethered to my wall charger for a week, I finally arrived at my wits end and made an appointment at the apple store to have it replaced. I was annoyed to pay the $80 for a new battery, but I dragged my kids to the mall anyways. Imagine my delight as I sat at the genius bar and the so-called 'genius' told me they didn't have my battery in stock........... (the pause is to emphasize my annoyance) So he scheduled me an appointment at a different store the next morning.

So the next day I loaded my kids up again and dragged them down to an apple store in the middle of the ritziest downtown area in Connecticut (where I'd obviously never been.) After circling (more like aimlessly wandering and turning the wrong way down one-way streets) for 45 minutes, I decided to park in the middle of the road in front of the apple store and wait as long as it would take to for one of those parking spots to open up. Luckily, it was only 20 more minutes before a spot opened up a few stores down. And I only had to honk and shout at two different range rovers that tried to slip in before me.

Already exhausted and beyond frustrated, I parked. I went to the meter only to find it only accepts change. (Where am I?!? 1984?!? Am I really expected to carry loose change?!?) So I dug all my nickels and dimes out of the little pockets in my wallet and starting pouring them in. Nothing happened. No time was added. It just kept flashing 'EXPIRED'. I asked a passing person if they know how these things works and he said, (this is NOT the life changing stranger) "They only take quarters." QUARTERS?!? Why do I not have ANY quarters?!? It's because I'm always a sucker for those dumb bouncy ball quarter machines outside of diners. I agreed right then and there I was NEVER going to let my children take my quarters for quarter machines again. (Can you sense my mood?!? Haha)

I frantically dug around the car (while my kids whined) for any quarters that may have fallen into cracks or under seats. No luck. I non-optimistically checked the designated change compartment assuming nothing would be there, because (let's be honest) I don't organize my change into designated change compartments. I leave it in jacket pockets and spend it on quarter machines. But thank heavens for Zack. He literally ALWAYS saves the day. He wasn't even there, and he saved the day. He had so thoughtfully placed a few of each coin type into their slots so that my designated coin compartment was stocked for me. I mean... (cue the heart eye emoji. #besthusbandever)

I grabbed the two quarters and threw them in the machine. And unbuckled the kids from their seats and started uphill (yes, up a very steep hill) to the apple store.

Okay, so I want to pause here. Because can you just imagine how I looked? If you looked up "struggling" in the dictionary it would have been a picture of me at this moment. I was positively frantic and annoyed. My hair was a mess, things were falling out of my purse, I was carrying Penelope and holding Gunner's hand (there may have been some dragging involved). At this moment, I wasn't thrilled with my life.

Half way to the store I saw two older ladies walking toward me. They were dressed nicely and had lovely manicured nails. They looked like the picture of leisure and luxury. Just a couple of older ladies lunching in Greenwich. Can you just imagine them? And how lovely they looked? And how wonderful their lives were?? I almost rolled my eyes with pure annoyance. As we approached each other I met eyes with one of them, and she looked us up and down and said to the other woman, completely genuinely, "Oh! How lucky is she?"

I literally scoffed as I walked past. What on earth did she mean?!? Lucky??? Me. Lucky? Couldn't she see me?!? It completely caught me off guard. Here she was, in head to toe J. Crew, lunching with her friend. No children to pull her hair or wipe cream cheese on her or dump her soda all over the floor of a restaurant, and she thought I was lucky?!? (Granted, this woman probably wasn't drinking soda at lunch. Guarantee she was drinking sparkling water.)

The comment stuck with me all day. I kept reevaluating her tone over and over again, looking for some hint of sarcasm. But it wasn't there. She looked at me, with my hands too full to even think straight, and all she saw was that I was blessed. And when I look at my life with a clear head, I know that it's true. But, in this particular moment my gripe list was a mile long. I had a million complaints about my life. I was blinded from seeing that these children (that fill my hands and more) are the greatest treasure of my life.

No gift I ever receive, no peaceful uninterrupted lunch, no perfect manicure, no J. Crew jeans, will ever compare to them. A lifetime of those things could never compete with the privilege it is to be their mother.

So the next time you're frantically scrambling to get somewhere with kids in tow, I genuinely hope a kind stranger will remind you of just how lucky you are to have your hands full.



Stocking Stuffer Faves

We got home from our trip late last Wednesday night. Like really late. Like I may have actually cried while I dragged my stuff and kids for 2.5 miles through the airport to baggage claim. (Has anyone flown into JFK and NOT been in the furthest gate possible?!? Yeah, me neither.) 

Anyways, the kids and I slept in on Thursday. Poor Zack had to go to work bright (dark) and early. But, once I finally woke up I decided to jump start the unpacking process, which is soooo not like me. At least not like 2016 me. But maybe this is, like, my new thing? My new 2017 thing. I unpack immediately after arriving home from a trip. Wow! 2017 me seriously has her cr*p together. (Spoiler alert: It didn't last! There is still one suitcase sitting in my closet. Completely full.)