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Saturday, January 18, 2014

Letter to My Daughter


Abigail,

As I think about the words I want to write to you I tear up a little.  You are our joy and our love.  I relish watching you as you pull yourself up on something bouncing your short little legs your face showing all the joy in the world.  Your voice brings a smile to my face when I hear it squealing in joy at your brother or yelling (at your reflection in the oven glass) or whispering at me when you get done nursing.  You always smile the biggest grin wit hone little dimple when your dad or I walk into a room, and it lights up our day. 

Your favorite thing to do right now is play in the dog water.  You have started eating solid foods and act like the world is going to end if there isn't food on your tray while you are sitting in the high chair.  You will eat anything we give to and eat until we stop giving it to you! 

Abigail, I wish so many things for you as you grow in this world.  I wish you to be honest, kind, loving, Godly, and discerning.  I hope to raise you to be strong and confident but full of grace.  The world that you will grow up in already seems so different from the one that I did. And it doesn't seem like it was that long ago that I was growing up!  I fear that you will fall trap to the world instead of striving to live above it and all that goes on, holding your own morals and faith regardless of those around you. 

I can't wait to watch you grow into a woman and I know while we won't always see eye to eye I hope we can always be respectful of each other and stay close.

Love Forever and Always,


Mamma

Wednesday, December 18, 2013

Baby Shoes





I swing from being totally over it to really fed up about the house never being clean and there being stuff everywhere. 

Then I see the baby shoe under the table that was kicked off by Abigail who is constantly on the move and crawls from one end of the house to the other squealing with delight when she catches up to someone in a room. 

Then there are the blocks that are tucked into the pile of dirty cloths on my floor because Garrett is constantly wrapping his toys in clothes as he plays Santa.  He lives for you to spend ten minutes "sleeping" while he eats the cookies and delivers your presents.

I walk by the baby shoe and remember that there is such a short time when those itty bitty shoes will be under my table and I decide to leave it a little longer, and smile every time I walk by it.

Saturday, December 14, 2013

Favorite Part of the Day

My favorite part of the day is the end of the day.  When the kids are all washed, pajamas on, and teeth and hair brushed.  They are so clean and smell so good.  All they want is a book and bedtime snuggles.  They smell like soap and there tired little eyes are hanging low.  I love reading to them watching them get in grossed into a book their eyes lighting up and a plot changes or something funny happens, or Garrett who gets excited and has a million questions about what is going on, and you can't possibly continue reading until they are all answered.

My other favorite part of bedtime, feeding and rocking Abigail to sleep.  The other kids are sometimes still crazy at this point and it is my time of the night to unwind and sit down for the first time, sometimes for the day.  Her room is dark with the noise maker going and the night light on it just barely illuminating her little features.  She grunts and swallows as she runs her hands up and down my chest and runs her little fingers through my hair.  Sometimes she even reaches up to feel my face as she settles in and gets sleepy. 

Of course then there are the nights when bedtime is the worst part of the day. When it is the last straw for everybody, no one listens, everyone is tired and crying and Abigail is screaming because she woke up for the third time when I put her in her crib.  But that's okay, I'd rather just remember the good nights!

Sunday, December 1, 2013

Giving Thanks

I find myself counting my blessings a lot these days.  I have two beautiful children and a loving niece. Then their is that wonderful husband that supports me in everything and is my rock.  We live in a beautiful place, have a wonderful home and so much support and love.

This Thanksgiving was spent with great friends of ours that live in Kalispell.  They we such wonderful hosts and brave to take on our family of five!  There little girl Grace is 14 months and is such a joy!  The weekend was spent laughing, loving on the kids, eating, and drinking.  The perfect Thanksgiving weekend.

Jen got a new camera so we got lucky and got a ton of great pictures of the weekend while she was playing around.


 Many faces of Addison

Many faces of Garrett


Jake works for the Kalispell Fire Department so we went and visited him while he was on shift.  The kids had a blast running around the huge engine bay and getting in and out of the trucks.



Being mobbed by the kids in the morning.


Banished to the kids table


Grace eyeballing Addison's ice cream



All of us at the Thanksgiving table



Playing with the kids in the basement



Saturday, November 9, 2013

Marriage


This quote came from a series that one of my favorite blogs is doing called "Less is More".  In the particular post that this appears in Eddie is talking about More Intimacy.

With all the chaos going on in our lives these days Brian and I sometimes feel like ships passing in the wind.  Now that he isn't in paramedic school we do have more time at home together but it still seems like it is the rarity instead of the norm. 

I truly believe that the strength of a family is dependent on the healthiness of the relationship between spouses.  The stronger and deeper rooted the relationship between husband and wife the stronger and healthier the family is. 

One of the keys to a secure marriage is intimacy.  I am not just talking about intimacy in the bedroom but intimacy throughout the day.  I am talking about the moments in the kitchen when you kiss as you are preparing dinner or doing the dishes, the little whispers in the hallway while moving kids from bath to bed, texts saying that you are thinking about your spouse.

I am lucky in that Brian is so good at all the little moments.  It pushes me to respond back in the same manner, when I am apt to run in the other direction with ten things on my mind.  The moods of our house definitely revolve around the mood of our relationship.  When we take the time to be loving with each other, I have noticed we are often more relaxed and loving with the kids.  When we go into stressful survival mode and don't take the time to check into each other the kids feed off of that. We are more likely to be sharp with them and they in turn are less likely to obey.  


Sunday, October 27, 2013

Multipling Children

Brian and I were walking across the street the other day, he is carrying Abigail in her car seat and I am herding Garrett and Addison across the street.  We run into old friends of ours that we hadn't seen since last Christmas, and I think the jest was something like "man, you guys have been busy procreating!" While we didn't procreate Addison, we definitely have been busy multiplying children!

Adding two kids in four months to our family has sent us wheeling in a lot of ways.  We also feel so blessed in many ways as well!  We feel lucky that we have the means to provide a safe, healthy, and loving environment for Addison. Garrett and her are getting along so well, love playing together and our family has molded around her.  She seems to have thrived in the structured environment in our home constantly asking questions, wanting to help cook dinner, and constantly wanting to have an interaction and connection.

Things have also been hard, Abigail and even Garrett are sometimes up multiple times a night. There are fights between the older two, tears about things not being fair, and Addison (understandably so) can be over emotional.  It is a fine balance to keep everyone feed, happy, disciplined and well rested.  One that is exhausting and almost never obtainable.  But it does make those moments when I am making dinner, Abigail is napping, Addison is coloring at the kitchen counter talking with me and Garrett is playing quietly with his trains very sweet and rewarding.

The other thing I have noticed about multiplying children, even with a 5 year old and a 3 year old, someone is always hungry.  I cannot keep enough food in the house!  This is especially true with Addison.  She can eat two bowls of oatmeal for breakfast, oatmeal that has fried apples and raisins in it and then tell me 20 minutes later, while she is in line at school that she is hungry. We are constantly going through snacks, and then telling them they have to wait for lunch, dinner, etc. to eat again.

Then there is the laundry...I am learning that if I don't just take a day and do it, including folding and putting away, we are constantly doing laundry. All. Week. Long.  Digging through piles on our bed, and moving piles from our bed to the bench back to the bed, back to the bench, back to the bed, which is even more annoying than just pushing myself to do it all in one day.  And we basically end up doing laundry all week anyway between accidents at night, spills during the day and Garrett's bloody noses!  Aggghh, and re-reading that paragraph just made me exhausted...

I am constantly telling myself to let go of the things like the laundry, dirty bathrooms, and dog hair everywhere and just enjoy the kids.  To give them what they really need which is my time and attention.  They are only young once and the bathrooms can wait.  The laundry will just get dirty again and pile up in a corner. 

I try to make myself sit with Abigail drinking in the smell of her neck soaked with baby drool and spit-up, that smell that makes my heart skip a beat just thinking about it.  To make her giggle and soak in that toothless grin, that is now blemished with one little tooth. 

To tune into Garrett's constant chatter as he and I are painting his Halloween costume and he is so into what he is trying to tell me that he has been talking for the last 20 minutes and completely stopped painting. 

To let Addison help me with dinner, pulling up a stool and wanting to help measure, see the noodles boil and to just be next to me with my undivided attention for 10 minutes.  Her face lighting up when I tickle her or tease her. 

We have been busy and the adjustments have been hard at times but the blessings that we see and the richness and joy of the kids makes it all worth the crazy!