Amy Lou Hawthorne is an active duty Army helicopter pilot who was was born and raised in Kentucky. She moved to Kentucky at 18 and attended Seton Hall University for a few years, then transferred to Auburn University in Alabama and graduated with a Bachelor’s of Science Degree in Mathematics. Upon graduation, she was commissioned as a 2nd Lieutenant into the United States Army. Her first Army assignment was at flight school where she met her (now) husband Blake, on a blind date!
They both graduated as OH-58D Kiowa Warrior Army Reconnaissance Helicopter Pilots and were stationed in Fort Lewis, Washington. While stationed in Washington they did a nine-month tour to the Republic of Korea and upon returning to WA, they had their first child, Miss Everly Brynn Hawthorne! They consider their little six-year-old beagle Bella their other daughter.
Amy loves traveling, watching and playing sports, crafting, pretty handwriting, decorating the house for every holiday, camping, Auburn football and coffee! She is VERY passionate about soldiers and sharing her life lessons and one day, wants to adopt a little Korean boy or girl. Lastly, she is a living testimony that failure is going to happen and it is okay. It is how you grow from that failure that really confirms your true character.
How many children do you have? What inspired their names?
We have one beautiful baby girl who just turned seven months old! Her name is Everly Brynn and there’s a funny story behind how we came up with her name! My apologies if you have ever heard this story before, but it cracks me up.
Every single name I mentioned to my husband throughout my pregnancy he said he did not like. I started to think we would end up having the baby and she would have no name! I loved the name “Channing” and I loved the name “Tatum”. I told him and he thought I was crazy! He said we are not naming our daughter after that guy! Ha!
Halfway through my second trimester, I came across the name Everly! I thought it was beautiful, timeless and classy, yet a little modern and edgy, and most importantly it was different! But I just knew Blake wouldn’t like it, so I hesitated telling him. One night over dinner I just said it. “Hey Blake, what about Everly?” And he immediately looks at me and says, “that’s it!” I knew right away it was the one, because it was the first name he didn’t hesitate over!
Fast-forward to third trimester. There I am, scrolling through Yahoo News stories and I see that Channing Tatum and his wife had their first baby, and….yup, her name was Everly. HAHAHAHA! Moral of the story is, now Blake thinks I had a hidden agenda the whole time and named her Everly since I could not get Channing or Tatum!
What’s your favorite way to spend time with your family?
We love weekends. Like whoa. During the week, we wake up at 4:30 every morning because we are Army helicopter pilots. So to be able to sleep in until 6 or 7 on the weekends is GLORIOUS! We bring Everly in bed with us and all just lay there and cuddle with the dog and play and she giggles and we just love it. We also love going Saturday morning thrifting/yard sale-ing and on weekend morning walks!
We put the babe in the stroller, grab our coffee and the beagle knows right away what time it is. It seems like every time we go on a walk, Blake and I dive into our deepest conversations. It always feels like we love and respect each other the most during these conversations. I think it’s because there are no distractions. There’s no TV, there’s no cell phone, there’s no laundry or dishes or chores, it’s just us. It’s the quiet, quality time that we so desperately need to keep the fire alive.
Are there any children’s brands you find yourself buying over and over again?
Yes! If you follow me on Instagram (@AmyLouHawthorne) you know that I am all about baby clothes, baby accessories and baby room decor!!! I never realized how much I’d enjoy shopping for my babe, but I actually don’t even shop for myself anymore! My favorite bow shops are Monroe and Harlow, Mint and Arrows, Ruby Blue Originals, Lemons And Lace, Miss Ruby Locks and GuGuBerry (I love big bows)!
As far as big box store clothing goes, I love First Impressions by Macys, Zara Baby and Gap Kids. And for room decor I LOVE The Land of Nod! For small handmade shops, I adore Candy Kirby Designs, Little Bow and Arrow, Alpine Baby Co., Solly Baby, Baby Jives, Sly Fox Threads, and Loved by Hannah and Eli, just to name a few but you can see all the shops through #BabyHawthorneStyle and #BabyHawthorneNursery!
How has motherhood affected your personal style?
Honestly? Not much! I’ve always had a very relaxed style. My favorite things to wear are destroyed jeans, loose v-necks and my hair up in a messy, top knot bun. In the fall/winter, I love leggings with boots, oversized hoodies and again my hair up in a bun. So, not much has changed. I love 3 day old hair with dry shampoo and I will say I love it even more now, cause let’s be real…who has time to do their hair?
What is your favorite thing about being a mom?
There’s so much! I love teaching her to love the Lord. I love knowing that this beautiful little human-being crawling around my house is who I have been waiting my whole life to meet. I love knowing that she is a product of the love between my husband and I. I love being a part of “the mom crowd.” I love being able to talk to other parents now knowing what they were talking about! I love saying, “yes, I’m a mom!” and I love walking around the grocery store with her.
I love seeing her daddy play with her. I love watching her grow and change. I love seeing how much I have grown and matured as a woman and wife. More than anything, I love that she is my greatest joy and that the smile on her face can completely turn my day around. Because she needs me in order to survive. And that’s just amazing to me.
What’s the hardest thing about being a mom?
There is so much information at our fingertips. Sometimes too much. With the press of a button, we can have answers via google, a friend, a parent, a doctor, an email, the news, you name it. That’s scary. It’s so easy to hear everything we are doing wrong. It took me awhile to realize that whatever works best for my family is what is right. No matter what, there are going to be people that disagree with what I do and I can’t let that bother me. Now knowing that I can do what works best for me and our baby has taken away so much stress!
Nights are tough. Especially cause we get up at 4:30 every morning. I breastfeed, so for the longest time, I’d look over and see Blake asleep and I would grow so bitter. It wasn’t until I finally took a deep breath and realized that there would come a day that I would miss this. I’d miss these late night feeding sessions. I’d miss these middle of the night cuddles.
So I took on a new perspective, and I began realizing that every messy night brings a new sunrise, a new morning and a new day. And so rather than hating the night, I learned to love the mornings. I lie there in bed and see the sun start to peer through my blinds and a sense of calmness and peace immediately comes over me (and then I make coffee and all is right again).
Has your beauty routine changed at all since you’ve had kids?
Ever since I started prenatal vitamins, my skin has been so much healthier. I’ve never worn much makeup, but now I hardly wear any. Not only do I not have time, but I’m also in the Army, so I don’t wear much of anything anyways. I will say I just recently started wearing lipstick and it makes me feel so done up and grown up! Even if I don’t do much else, when I put on lipstick I feel like I got all ready! Ha!
Since having Everly, I do pay more attention to my skin care. I use eye cream and face lotion both day and night and I ensure we are both wearing SPF when we go out in the sun.
What have you learned from your kids?
An entirely new love that I didn’t think was possible. I’ve learned the importance of patience. To be honest, I’ve never been one with much patience, but boy does being a parent change that! And time management. Wow. For sure time management. I cannot even remember what I did when I had so much time!
While I am at work all day, I am running through lists of things to do for when I get home that all involve Everly. I am literally doing everything I can to keep another human being alive! Crazy! Through it all, you still have to find time for your Faith, your marriage, work and don’t ever forget yourself. You always have to make time for yourself.
What is your favorite easy, go-to recipe that your child loves?
She’s only 7 months so we haven’t done anything too crazy yet, but she loves avocado, sweet potato, zucchini, squash and carrots! I love making baby food purees! I did just find out you can make s’mores in the oven though! Haha! My entire pregnancy I craved s’mores, and I never knew I could make them inside!!! Click here to get the recipe.