Family Pictures | in our own backyard

We did family pictures in our own backyard this year.  Both girls were sick, it was cold outside and it just didn’t seem worth the effort to load everyone in the car to drive to a pretty park when our own backyard had a few colorful leaves and our favorite spots to sit.  As I was picking my favorite ones I realized we didn’t any of just the girls together and we didn’t get any of just me and Forest.  But the ones we did get are precious and I can’t wait to get some printed for our walls and add them to our Christmas card.

These are a few of my favorites.  And if you scroll far enough you’ll get to see a few outtakes!











We took these pictures on our 6th wedding anniversary so we got a few pictures of our annual picture, holding the frame with the picture from the year before.



And the outtakes.  Because pictures with a 2.5 year old and 5 month old are super easy (said no one ever).



^neither one wanted to look but I might still kinda like this one



And there you have it.  A handful of family photos for us to cherish forever and hang on our walls.  Maybe next year the kids won’t be sick, we’ll take them when it’s a little warmer and we’ll take them at a pretty park. Or maybe we’ll take them in our backyard again and I’ll hang them on our walls and treasure them just the same.

Until next time — Cindy

*All images are original to A View from the Shore


Sloane | five months

We blinked and you’re five months old, sugar bear!  You’re a great baby and we love everything about you!

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  • Her hands!
  • Sitting (with support) so she can see everything
  • Naps in the swing + looooong naps in your crib
  • When Peyton sings to her
  • Funny noises
  • Talking/jabbering


  • Tummy time
  • Having her hair washed/rinsed
  • New people talking to her


  • Rolled over belly to back
  • Apple picking
  • Trip to the pumpkin patch
  • Vacation to Rachele’s in VA
  • Halloween (She was Pooh & Peyton was Piglet)
  • Taste of baby cereal


  • I’m still eating dairy free and the inconsolable crying/screaming has only happened a few times and it was during our trip to visit Rachele (I think she was done being in the car).
  • Sleep has been mostly terrible still.  She slept great in the crib the first few nights but she still wakes up a lot during the night.  Forest (what a great man he is) makes a pallet with couch cushions on the floor in her room because I will inevitably end up in her room around 2:00 am.
  • She’s napping 30-45 minutes at a time in the swing every 2 hours.  And recently started falling asleep on her own, in her crib for a 1-3 hour afternoon nap.  It’s been heavenly!
  • Sloane rolled over (belly to back) for the first (and second) time the day before Halloween.  She’s only rolled over a handful of times since then but we’re getting somewhere.
  • Playtime with Peyton is still hit or miss.  Peyton is still learning to be gentle and to share her toys but it’s progress and I can see them being good friends as they can play more together.
  • Sloane is extra giggly when she’s starting to get sleepy.  The smallest noise or sound will send her into a fit of giggles.
  • Sloane is all about blowing raspberries still!  And screeching.  And attempting both at the same time.  
  • And she still likes being in the exer-saucer/jumper.  She’s still figuring out her arms but she likes to throw them all over the place and hit the piano or other things attached.
  • We got to celebrate Sloane’s first Halloween!  You can read about all the fall things we did in this post.  We had a 3-6 month Winne the Pooh onesie that we squeeeeeeezed Sloane into and I made a Piglet costume for Peyton.  
  • Which reminds me that Sloane had her first trips to apple picking and pumpkin picking.  Which you can also read about in this post.
  • We traveled to Rachele’s house in VA for a long weekend getaway.  She enjoyed a visit to Bold Rock Brewery, a long walk to the park and watching us skip rocks, And Sloane slept all.night.long the three nights we were there.  There must be something 
  • And our little girl tried baby cereal for the first time on her 5 month birthday!  More of it was on her chin than in her belly by the time we were done but we’ll keep trying!

You are absolutely precious, Sloane!  We love you so much!



All the FALL things

We had such a fun time picking apples and pumpkins this year.  When we find a place we like we tend to stick with them year after year so it’s no surprise that we decided on Battleview Orchards in Freehold, NJ for our apples and Cheesequake Farms in Old Bridge, NJ for our pumpkins.

Peyton had so much fun picking apples this year.  She was running up and down the rows of trees and begging for another bite of apple.  She wasn’t the biggest fan of picking the apples herself but she most definitely enjoyed eating them!  Sloane fell asleep facing forward in the carrier just as we were paying, I couldn’t believe it but I guess when you’re tired, you’re tired! Forest made homemade apple cider later in the week with the apples we picked and it was absolutely delicious.  He did a great job!

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Sloane | four months

Four months — sixteen weeks — one hundred and twelve days.  That’s how long we’ve been smoochin’ your cheeks!  And I’m so thankful that you are ours to smooch!

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  • Her hands!
  • Sitting (with support) so you can see everything
  • Naps in the swing
  • When Peyton sings to her
  • Funny noises
  • Talking/jabbering
  • Indie kisses on her toes


  • Tummy time
  • Having her hair washed/rinsed


  • I’m still eating dairy free and the inconsolable crying/screaming has only happened once, just this week.
  • Sloane slept in her own room!  In the bassinet for a few weeks until Grandpa Johnson and Great-Grandpa delivered and assembled her crib!
  • Sleep has been mostly terrible still.  She slept great in the crib the first few nights but she still wakes up a lot during the night.  If I sit in her room, she’ll sleep for hours and within 10 minutes of me leaving the room she’s awake again.  It’s happened too many times to count…
  • And naps are 30-45 minutes unless I hold her or carry her in the wrap.  Which I’m trying so hard not to do… She’s good about putting herself to sleep when she’s tired and she falls asleep in the swing but never, never, never sleeps for long stretches of time.
  • We’re having Sloane wear bibs because there is so.much.drool!  I’m 95% sure she’s teething.  Excess drool + everything to the mouth = teething in my book.
  • She’s finally doing better with tummy time!  Since she holds her head up while we hold her she’s holding her head up while on her tummy for 5 minutes or so.  But once she’s done and her head hits the floor, she’s done.  Ha!
  • Playtime with Peyton has changed now that Sloane is more interested.  She’s still not reaching for toys but if she hits one while her arms are flying she’ll grab it.  But Sloane LOVES to watch Peyton.  She gives Peyton all the smiles and Peyton loves to sing to Sloane.
  • If Sloane is crying or fussy Peyton has started comforting her by saying “It’s ok Sloane-y.  Right here Sloane-y.”
  • Which reminds me that Peyton calls Sloane, Sloane-y.  And that’s the only person who I’ll allow to call her Sloane-y. :)
  • Sloane has the best laugh!  And getting her to belly laugh is the cutest!  Forest can really get her going!
  • Her eyes are still blue but they are lighter than when she was born.
  • And she’s starting to grow back some hair.  She lost all of it except a small patch on the back of her head and some is starting to grow back all over.
  • She found her loud yelling voice and likes to use it when she wants someone to pay attention to her.
  • She likes facing forward in the carrier.  Forest has even worn her facing out!  (I love it when he wears the babies!)
  • And she likes being in the exer-saucer/jumper.  Her core isn’t quite strong enough for her to sit on her own so we stick a blanket behind her for support.  I don’t think we’ll need it much longer!
  • Sloane is a rock star in the nursery at church.  She goes on Sunday mornings and Tuesday mornings while I’m at Bible study.
  • Sloane had her first bonfire on her 4 month birthday!
  • I packed away the 3-6 month clothes and she is officially only wearing 6-9 month clothes!  Well except for a few special 6 month clothes that I want to squeeze her into one more time.
  • I weighed Sloane at home 2 weeks ago and she was 16 pounds.  Her 4 month appointment is tomorrow so we’ll see how much she weighs and how tall she is.

You are absolutely precious, Sloane!  We love you so much!