This week, we have been a-sparing-us all the extras and just simply soaking up this time it is meant for us!

Carmen's 32-week bump - A-Sparing-Us

Author’s Personal Collection/Carmen Grover

There’s so much more I can say, but that’s what this week is: getting to “play grandma” by dressing up baby dolls, being shot by a fire-breathing dragon, and cozy snuggles with our baby girl who is under the weather.

Carmen playing with her daughter - Carmen's bump day blog, week 32: A-Sparing-Us

Author’s Personal Collection/Carmen Grover

Just connecting with my kids! We are not cleaning; we are just laying around and enjoying how they want us just to be with them.

That’s it. OK, it doesn’t mean it doesn’t get totally overwhelming, and there is stuff I will at some point have to do, but for now, I’m sparing us the high anxiety tension of me picking up as they play. Phillip took a shovel to the toys, just pushing them out of the way.

Carmen's selfie with her son

Author’s Personal Collection/Carmen Grover

We’re taking time with family to remember our holiday pasts and celebrate our current presents.

So, I didn’t capture the kids’ giddy excitement as it moved so fast, like lightning strikes as they searched for presents (a newly formed tradition of Santa hiding gifts like an Easter egg hunt), and them making sure the wood stove wasn’t on as Santa burned his butt the first time and still brings bandaids–an ongoing joke!

Opening presents on Christmas

Author’s Personal Collection/Carmen Grover

The kids formed their own parade in the restaurant after we were finished, going around the restaurant giggling and singing Christmas songs to everyone.

They went running up and down the halls of Oma’s retirement home, making all the elderly people laugh at their youthfulness and remembering their own.

I held my daughters as they weren’t feeling well, imagining similar pictures when they lay bundled in my arms as newborns.

Carmen snuggling her sick kiddos

Author’s Personal Collection/Carmen Grover

Maelie painted my nails with so much care, doing such a good job, enjoying it, our pride and joy being enough.

This time feels so sacred and like it’s not mine to deserve.

But we are soaking up all the special family and me time it was given to us to spare us the familiar stress this season and pregnancy in general brings. We’re experiencing just tasteful living, all we could ever really want with no real big “to-do.” How often do we ever get that in life? This baby’s gift to us is melting away all my worries and fears because we are all here in our very special family, baby, and my time…a-sparing-us any trouble…our chaotic mess and lives a-spiring-us into making memories!

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