Giveaway! Win Four Free Tickets to Cirque du Soleil in Toledo

One of the things I love doing with Lila is taking her to see shows. Whether its a big professional performance, or a small jr. high production of Annie Jr., I love sharing my love of theater with her. She already is quite the little actress too! It seems like she’s constantly singing to herself or acting out some skit.

One show coming up that I’m excited to take her to is Cirque du Soleil’s new show OVO, coming to the Huntington Center in Toledo May 31 – June 4. This show is family-friendly and combines three things Lila loves: dancing, music and nature.

Cirque Du Soleil Toledo, OH

Here’s a bit more about the storyline:

OVO, meaning “egg” in Portuguese, is a headlong rush into a colorful ecosystem teeming with life, where insects work, eat, crawl, flutter, play, fight and look for love in a non-stop riot of energy and movement.

When a mysterious egg appears in their midst, the insects are awestruck and intensely curious about this iconic object that represents the enigma and cycles of their lives. It is love at first sight when a gawky, quirky insect arrives in this bustling community and a fabulous ladybug catches his eye – and the feeling is mutual.

If you’ve never seen a Cirque Du Soleil show, I highly recommend it. This is the type of performance that will awe adults and children alike, with incredible acrobats, colorful sets and costumes and fun, upbeat music.

The team at Cirque Du Soleil has generously offered four free tickets for me to give away on my blog! To enter, comment below with why you’d like to win and who you’d take with you. I’ll choose one entry at random on May 19th. 

If you don’t end up winning, you can still get $10 off when you buy before May 14th. Just click here.

Good luck and I hope to see some of you at the show!

I was compensated with four free tickets for writing this post, but I only write about brands I really like. 

 

Happy First Birthday, Whitaker and Davis!!

Our sweet boys turn one year old today! It’s hard to believe just a year ago they came into the world as teeny preemies born six weeks early. I made this video looking back on their first year.

I’ll never forget their birth story. It was the most physically difficult day of my life, but the most joyous emotionally. After miscarriage, infertility and a hard pregnancy, my boys were here and healthy! The first time I held them it felt like after almost three years I could finally exhale.

Screen Shot 2016-05-29 at 5.26.17 PM

This year has been a lot of work, no doubt, but I loved it all. The hard moments caring for two infants plus a four year old paled in comparison to the dark moments we faced trying to conceive them and then carrying them for nine months. There’s definitely something to be said about the hard times making you appreciate the good even more.

It also helps that these boys are FANTASTIC babies. Seriously, we got so lucky with these two. They are two of the most laid back, happy, curious, content babies I’ve ever been around. We had their first birthday party this weekend and everyone was amazed at how chill they were (even when mommy dresses them up and there’s 40 people in their house!).

Screen Shot 2017-05-08 at 3.18.57 PM

Most of the time these boys pal around together, crawling side by side from one room to another getting into trouble. Some of their favorites are pulling down the curtain in our TV room, dumping the entire bucket of lego jrs onto the floor, pushing kitchen chairs around and standing at the gate trying to shake it open. I love that already they are inseparable.

Screen Shot 2017-05-08 at 3.19.56 PM

Let’s hold hands, brother #batmantwins #twins #twinboys #twinmom #meltsmyheart #babyboy #10monthsold

A post shared by Liz Batman (@elizbatman) on

On their own, they have very distinct personalities. Davis, despite being the smaller one, absolutely houses food at meal time. You can’t put food in front of this kid fast enough and usually he’s two handed shoveling it in. Meal time is definitely Davis’ favorite time!

How big is Davis?! #sobig #davisray #11monthsold #sweetboy A post shared by Liz Batman (@elizbatman) on

I think Davis enjoyed his cake! #davisray #firstbirthday #cakesmash #cincodemayoparty

A post shared by Liz Batman (@elizbatman) on

Davis is super smiley and saves his biggest smiles for his sister. He loves to cuddle (I finally got a cuddler!!) and will nuzzle into my neck before bed while sucking his thumb. He’s a curious little cat and loves to go off and investigate the toys, turning each one over in his hand, banging it on the ground or chewing on it (always chewing!). Screen Shot 2017-05-08 at 3.25.01 PM Screen Shot 2017-05-08 at 3.23.53 PM Screen Shot 2017-05-08 at 3.26.05 PM Whitaker is a total boy in the sense that he is very physical, loud and silly. Wherever there is a loud BANG, you know Whitaker is nearby. He loves his bottle and is usually happy to let his brother steal food off his tray. While he’s not a cuddler, Whit is the most content when he’s being toted around on someone’s hip. He gets this hilariously smug look on his face like “heh heh I’m being carried and you’re not!” Screen Shot 2017-05-08 at 3.26.52 PM Screen Shot 2017-05-08 at 3.27.41 PM Screen Shot 2017-05-08 at 3.28.31 PM

Whit has taken to grunting when he wants something, like our attention, his bottle or a toy. His laugh cracks me up. It’s this deep, cackle like you’d hear on an old man. The quickest way to get a smile or laugh out of him is to pretend to bite his belly. I absolutely love this kids personality.

This boy has the gruntiess laugh. I just love it! #whitakerJohn #babylaughs #myheart

A post shared by Liz Batman (@elizbatman) on

Being a twin mom is seriously so amazing. I’m glad I get to experience this unique version of motherhood. I’ve become a much more relaxed mother since having twins. When you have two infants, you just have to let go of little worries like schedules, routines, milestones etc. Since my time is filled to the brim caring for these children, I’ve learned to savor moments and to be more present when it matters. I like this version of myself as a mom very much.

Screen Shot 2017-05-09 at 5.30.35 PM

The first year with twins is absolutely insane, but also incredibly fulfilling. I thank God every day for blessing us with these two souls. I know how lucky I am to be their mother and I can’t wait to see who they become.

Screen Shot 2017-05-09 at 5.32.03 PM

Screen Shot 2017-05-09 at 5.39.53 PM

Happy birthday boys! Mommy, Daddy and Lila love you so much. Thank you for bringing so much joy, laughter and peace to our family. 

 

7 Years Together

This weekend will be 7 years since Luke and I were married on a sunny, yet cool day in Chicago.

Screen Shot 2017-04-13 at 12.25.04 PM

To be honest, before we got married, I had a lot of anxiety. It was such a big decision and I didn’t want to screw it up! I knew in my heart Luke would be a great husband, but it was still scary.

You hear so many stories of couples who divorce, or worse live life together unhappy. I heard the saying “marriage is hard work!!” a lot and honestly, felt like I needed to steel myself for it to be difficult. I wasn’t exactly sure I wanted to step into a “hard” situation.

Of course I got over this fear and am SO glad I did!

Screen Shot 2017-04-13 at 12.57.28 PM

I know our marriage is still young, but after seven years (10 together total) I can honestly say being married to Luke has never once felt like “hard work.” It’s difficult for me to imagine a situation where it will in the future too.

We’ve been through cross-country moves, stressful jobs, raising three young children and the doozies – miscarriage and infertility. None of these things were easy, but they were made easier having Luke by my side. Situations that could have driven us a part only made us cling to each other more.

Throughout these seven years, we’ve evolved and grown. Both as individuals and as a couple. We’ve learned to communicate like pros, give support when the other needs it and serve up some tough love when it’s due.

One of the things I love and admire most about Luke is his desire to be a true partner to me. There really aren’t many fixed “roles” in our house. He carries his share of the childcare, housework, yard work, errands and more while working a stressful job. He is in tune with my needs and never makes me feel guilty when I need a break or time away to recharge.

Screen Shot 2017-04-13 at 12.53.24 PM

Screen Shot 2017-04-13 at 12.55.18 PM

When we do have an argument, it’s typically over in 5-10 minutes. Neither of us like to be at odds, so both of us are eager to talk it through, come to an understanding and move on. I think it’s just that we both agree that nothing is worth damaging our relationship over.

I often tell Luke that I really feel like our souls are linked. When he has to travel for work, I feel restless and unable to relax. I sleep poorly and just feel like something is missing. My life is always, always better when Luke is near to me. Thank God he works from home and is with us most days!

Screen Shot 2017-04-13 at 1.02.45 PM

When I started this blog, Luke and I had just gotten engaged. The posts were filled with my love for him and my excitement for the future. Three kids later, my posts have shifted to stories about motherhood, but make no mistake, Luke is still the most important and cherished person in my life.

Screen Shot 2017-04-13 at 12.54.24 PM

These seven years have flown by too. Sometimes I still feel like a love-sick 20-something who just met a tall, strong man named “Batman.” I hope someday when we’re old and have lived a good life together, that feeling will still be there giving me butterflies.

Luke, I love you so much! Thank you for being my person. I can’t wait to see what adventures this life brings us! XOXO forever.

 

 

 

 

Life In the Fast Lane

Oh me, oh my. It’s been far too long since I’ve sat down to blog. It seems life is moving so quickly and each moment of my day is filled to the brim with caring for babies, giving Lila my attention, working, exercising and trying my best to be a present wife, friend, daughter and sister.

Sadly, time for blogging has been hard to come by.

Beyond being busy busy, life has been really good lately. Our boys are now nine months old (!!!) and getting cuter and cuter by the day. They’re crawling all over the house, eating solids like bottomless pits and letting their personalities show.

Screen Shot 2017-02-12 at 8.49.45 PM

Davis may win the award for World’s Happiest Baby. The dude seriously just smiles all day long, giggles when you just look in his direction and seems to absolutely love life.

A great example of how chill Davis is happened today. We drove 3 hours home from visiting Luke’s parents and unbeknowngst to any of us, Davis was sitting on top of five of Lila’s mini, plastic My Little Ponies the whole time. You never would have known little plastic toys were digging into his back based on how quiet and happy he was!

Screen Shot 2017-02-12 at 8.53.26 PM

Whitaker in contrast is a little beef ball. If he does not like something, he will LET YOU KNOW IT! He exudes personality and goes from giggling, to yelling, to crying and back to giggling all within minutes. He’s very physical and is usually crawling into every nook and cranny of our first floor just checking things out.

Whit is a serious little baby and you can tell he’s thinking, thinking, thinking constantly. He’s also very vocal and is always blabbering to us. He is judicious with his smiles, so when you get one, you know it’s really special.

Screen Shot 2017-02-12 at 8.56.39 PM

The boys are starting to show that special twin bond. Just recently they’ve started smiling and giggling at each other. They still mostly play next to each other, but occasionally I’ll see them playing together – usually in the form of crawling on top of each other, pulling each other’s hair, or stealing a toy.

Screen Shot 2017-02-12 at 9.01.04 PM Screen Shot 2017-02-12 at 9.01.25 PM

Lila seems to be maturing so much these days. She’s morphing into a little girl and I couldn’t be prouder of her.

Screen Shot 2017-02-12 at 9.26.26 PM

I was worried how things would go once the boys were here and my time was split into thirds when she was used to having it all for 3.5 years. If anything, I think this change has been very positive for her.

She’s learned to entertain herself, be more patient if I’m busy and become very self-sufficient. The other day I was so impressed when she saw I was busy with the boys and got her art cart out to do art on her own for an hour.

Screen Shot 2017-02-12 at 9.05.58 PM

She’s gotten really into playing make believe and every day for our “play time together” we play barbies. I’m usually the little girl and she’s the mommy or babysitter. We play out little storylines that usually seem to intersect with what’s actually happening in her life. It’s a special time for the two of us and I love getting a glimpse into how she perceives her world.

We’ve been fortunate enough to find two great babysitters who watch the kids two afternoons a week while I work, and for date nights. Those first six months with the twins were all-consuming, so it feels good to get some time away to focus on my career and time with my main squeeze.

Screen Shot 2017-02-12 at 9.12.30 PM

I’m not going to lie, there are times when I feel like our life is so hectic and chaotic I’m not sure how we get through the day. On the good days, when everything goes according to plan, I catch myself thinking “twins are not so hard!”

But when one gets sick, or Luke has to travel, or things get out of whack, I can feel like a chicken with it’s head cut off. Like I’m just running around attending to someone’s needs every minute of the day. On those days I’ve found some good ice cream and talking with Luke about our life brings my perspective back in line.

Life certainly is an adventure with these kids. It’s hilarious, frustrating, joyous, difficult, unrelenting and satisfying all at once. Through the ups, downs and very full days, I take solace knowing that being their mother is exactly what I’m meant to be.

Screen Shot 2017-02-12 at 9.32.48 PM