I celebrated my 35th birthday at Bang Bang with my best friends.
Melissa and I headed to Las Vegas for the weekend to see Mariah!
Santi had a blast at Kaison's 2nd birthday party!
My 10th annual Palm Springs girls weekend rolled around just in time! I was in need of some serious RR & GT (rest, relaxation & girl time!)
We rented a gorgeous house nestled against the mountain and spent 3 fabulous nights swimming, tanning, eating & crafting. Flower crowns, portrait painting, Cards Against Humanity, bike riding & sparklers. Oh yeah, it was the perfect getaway!!!
Santi's first music festival! He had a great time watching his dad paint and exploring the festival with his cousin Ricky and BFF Chadi! These boys are TOO COOL!!
Abe and I went on an adventure to Marfa, TX with our good friends Patrick and Sara. We explored the quirky little town and got to see the XX (one of my most favorite bands!) perform a super intimate show at the Chinati Foundation. Spectacular.
Hanging out with his best buddy Kai!
Santi came to cheer me on at the 10/20 race in Del Mar. 10 miles, 20 bands, running with my bestie and greeted at the finish line by our husbands, sons & in laws...it was awesome!
February is CHD awareness month.
CHD stands for Congenital Heart Defect. HLHS is rare, it "comprises 4-8% of all congenital heart defects. It occurs in up to four out of every 10,000 live births. HLHS appears slightly more often in boys than in girls. Beyond family history, there are no clear risk factors for it, and no known way to prevent it."
It's funny to think that with everything we've been through with Santiago, (two open heart surgeries, a total of 7 weeks at CHLA, 4 months on oxygen) we rarely think of him as different or as having a heart defect. We rarely think of "all he's been through!" He is SO normal (whatever that is?!). He is just a charming little guy who's almost two years old.
I love sharing his story and instilling hope in other families. Santi is proof that modern medicine is marvelous. He is proof that you can still be a regular kid, even with a rare CHD like HLHS.
Santi overload is coming! 28 days of Santiago Banks in honor of CHD awareness!
Our best friends in El Paso have a son who is just 7 months younger than Santi. It's so fun to watch the progression of their interaction. The age gap is slowly closing. Also, unplanned matching jackets!
We had a lovely visit to the EP zoo with our great friends. Santi was more enamored by seeing the animals than ever before.
The only thing better than being a kid at Christmas time, is watching your own kids on Christmas.
We had an awesome pre-Christmas celebration in San Diego with my family, before heading to El Paso. Santi wasn't too sure about tearing open wrapping paper, but it didn't take him too long to catch on!
Santi surprised us on Christmas morning with the sweet and unexpected gift of sleeping in until 9:30am! He's a great sleeper and all, but 9:30 breaks all of his previous records!
We spent the day at Abe's parents house with lots of family and friends. Santi had a wonderful day (besides skipping his nap!) and was given so many thoughtful gifts.
I've said this before and I'll say it again...and again and again. I think it's so important for moms to make time for themselves. I am so lucky to have an amazing husband and family to love and care for Santi when I need some girl time.
I recently spent 3 nights in Alexandria, VA visiting my bestie Lindsay and her sweet family. I consider these trips "research," because her daughter Eva is only 8 months older than Santi. It's fascinating to see all the things Eva is doing and saying. It certainly helps prepare me for Santi's next phases.
We packed a lot of adventures into my short visit: Air & Space museum, American History museum, sea glass hunting, wine tasting and of course hours of girl talk. There is nothing that can soothe the soul like a first class flight, wine tasting, girl talk and a bed to yourself. Hah! Did I just type that?! But it's true! A little "me time" goes a long way.
After three bad falls in one week we decided it was in his best interest to get his beautiful hair out of his beautiful eyes, to protect his beautiful face!
I took Santi to Disconnected Salon, where he always gets the royal treatment. Despite crying through the entire appointment, Neil still invited Santi to sit on his motorcycle. What a treat! We're adjusting to our little guys new look. He looks too mature!
Santi LOVES tractors right now. Melissa & I took the boys to Leo Carrillo park so they could see some up close. They even got to chase a few peacocks.
Santi's BFF Kaison turned one! They celebrated by splashing around in Kai's back yard.