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Wednesday, June 26, 2013

A Love Story

Whenever I stop blogging for a while, I contemplate just giving it up altogether. I feel like I have already missed recording so many big things. How will I ever catch up? Where do I even begin again? Then, there's the guilt of being a bad community member-- so many blogs I haven't visited and so many comments left unanswered...Then I remember one of the basic truths about blogging (forgive the reference to a cheesy movie)-- Blogging means never having to say you are sorry.

So, I start again, slowly and perhaps temporarily and haltingly. I come back because:

1. I love my Babies and I love the idea of recording their lives for posterity.
2. I love the outlet that lets my vent about all of the not-so-lovely parts of our lives, too.
3. I love the community that blogging provides and the way the words of moms I have never met help transform me into a better version of myself.

It's that last reason that inspired this post.

I might not be on Blogger all the time, but Facebook I am, and recently, a friend shared a blog post I wish I had written: Six Words You Should Say Today.

I....loved it.

And, just like that I was loving all over the place.

Until, Friday afternoon when we left for our three- hour drive to Charlotte. The one where we hit every traffic jam. The one where Emily didn't have to potty until we were stuck in the far lane in the worst part of said traffic jams. The trip where the public restroom gave me the shakes. The one where every word out of their mouths came out as a high-pitched, nerve-wracking whine. Where my headache lasted longer than the Excedrin.

I was...not loving it. (This is my record of this not-so-lovely part of this past weekend, per the #2 reason I blog).

But, all bad road trips do end, and thankfully, there was a cold drink, a clean potty, good friends, and a comfy bed waiting for us at the other end.

And, like the calm after a bad storm, the next day was bright and beautiful and full of love...

Seriously, I think I had the best weekend ever with my children.

So many times I find myself feeling sad about how they are going up so quickly, how each day they lose a bit of baby.

But, my, oh my!

Who knew that watching them become big kids could be so much fun?

I love watching them grow!

This weekend, traveling as we so often do, I was struck by how different this trip was--how much there was to love about three.
***
I love watching them finally ride their Trunkies the way they are meant to be ridden.

I love watching them push the buttons on the ela-bator--over and over again.

I love watching them explore the hotel room like it's Treasure Island.

I love watching them laugh at themselves as they listen to their echoes in the parking garage.

I love watching them play with my best friend's son and Drew imitating his every move.

I love watching them get so excited and Emily yelling, "Hey, guys! Check this out!"

I love watching them grab my hand, each other's hand.

I love watching them enjoy a Rita's icee in a way that only a three-year old can.

I love watching them (okay, Emily) reach down and scoop up the spilled icee because it's so good she can't lose a drop.

I love watching them ride the rafts on the water ride, squealing with delight and yelling, "Awesome!"

I love watching them ride the helicopters and finding out that Emily said, "I wish Mommy was riding with us."

I love watching them wrestle with great mysteries of life, like-- where does the valet man take our car?

I love watching them ask the waitress, "Have you seen our car?"

I love watching them smell the flowers, the same flowers I hadn't really noticed.

I love watching them eat ice cream on the same day they had an icee. Double treats for my double sweets.

I love watching them touch a starfish,

dance in falling paper,

build a fort,

demolish block houses,

and gasp over the glow of a jellyfish.

I love watching them wrap their sticky arms around my neck for a picture, a picture to capture just how happy I was at that particular moment.


I love watching them...live.









Monday, June 24, 2013

Birthdays-- According to Three Year Olds

A snippet of a conversation I had with Emily and Andrew on the way to school...

Guess who has a birthday this weekend?

We had a birthday!

I know you did. But this weekend, Daddy has a birthday.

Is he going to have a party at the bounce house?

I want to have a party at the bounce house!

Is he going to have a cake?

Mommy, if he drops his cake, he can get another one.

Is he going to be two? He's going to be two because he has a back and legs (as she holds up two fingers).


What do you think we should get Daddy for his birthday?

Let's go to Wal-Mart and get him a party hat! (as he throws his arms up in the air)


Happy Birthday, Daddy Marty! Have fun bouncing. Don't worry about dropping your cake--we'll get you more. After all, you're only two (three, tops) in your kids' eyes and they think you look fabulous in a party hat! What more do you need?



Saturday, June 15, 2013

Third Birthday Party Recap

I know. I know. It seems like just yesterday that we were strolling down Sesame Street, hand-in-hand with Elmo, celebrating Emily and Andrew's SECOND birthday. How can it even be possible that their THIRD birthday has come and gone?

While Marty insists the last three years have been long, I argue just as emphatically that they have been short. How did we get from here...

to here...
Image by Lifelong Impressions


so fast?

Okay. Okay. I am going to stop with the sentimental, you've-heard-it-all before, time-is-passing-too fast blather.

This is a birthday recap post. Let's bring on the party!
***
This year we decided to take a different direction with the party--one that played into Emily and Drew's natural energy, one that took us to one of their favorite places, and one that didn't require me to clean my house: an indoor bounce house!


What could make jumping at a bounce house even better? How about jumping in pajamas?? Here are my two pajama-clad monkeys (and three Minnies) ready for their big party!

We chose the early morning time slot, making us the first party of the day. What happens when you bring three year olds to a bounce house before it opens? They stalk the place!

But, eventually, watched doors do open, and we found ourselves in the "pre-party" room where we waited for our friends, completed our release forms, and dropped off our shoes.

There was so much action we didn't even stop to color our shirts.

Who has time for coloring when we can climb and bounce and slide (headfirst, if we want)??



Everybody was having so much fun, I wondered how we would round them up for the muffins, yogurt parfaits, and birthday cake that awaited us. Ms. Pickles, our party host, knew just what to do...a whistle and a line put all the little monkeys on the move!

All week leading up to their birthday, when I would ask who had birthday coming up, Drew and Emily would both yell, "ME!" Drew would then try to out- shout Emily, yelling, "NO! It's MY birthday!" Apparently, they don't even want to share birthdays.

Here Drew is telling Tamia, "IT'S MY BIRTHDAY!" He makes me laugh!

On to the party room!

And, it looks like it's Emily AND Andrew's birthday!

More of our favorite things...

Like balloons!

Muffins!

Presents!

CAKE!

Surrounded by our awesome family and friends!

Happy birthday, Emily and Andrew!












Thursday, June 6, 2013

Our Ship Has Come In....

Literally!

Today, the Babies' third birthday present arrived!

While their birthday isn't technically until Saturday, I knew there was no way we were going to be able to conceal the big ark banked out back.

Instead, I envisioned a surprise unveil, complete with the parent paparazzi to capture the oohs and ahhs.

Drew was easy. After his eye appointment, he fell asleep in the car and was out when I slipped him inside.

Emily was not so easy. She has eyes like an eagle.

As we pulled in, I came in on two wheels, hoping to whip in and thereby prevent her from seeing the big boat peeking out from behind the house.

"Mommy! I saw something!"

Ignore.

Louder-- "Mommy! I saw something!"

"You did?"

"YES!"

"What do you think you saw?

"I saw a blue slide!!"

You can't get anything by her...

She wasted no time in waking Drew up from his nap and dragging him, half asleep, out the back door.

A short walk up the gangplank, and the maties were on board for waves of fun!

There's a blue slide

and a rock climbing wall.

A forward deck for gathering with friends

and a deck below with a bench and a fireman's pole.

There are regular swings

and trapeze swings (aka "an accident waiting to happen").

All sailors need an overlook to spy the open seas-- or peek over the neighbor's fence for the first time ever. Emily exclaimed, "Mommy, they have a pool and DOGS!" Yes, baby. There's a wide world out there...

They have a ship's wheel to safely steer them through their adventures.

It didn't take them long to get into a pretend adventure, as they reenacted scenes from Jake and the Neverland Pirates. Emily quickly assumed the role of captain, ordering Drew, her first mate, to check the treasure map. Like a seasoned sailor, he pulled a piece of paper out of his pocket. After a quick check of their location, Emily decided they needed to adjust their sails, and Drew assured her, "We're almost there!"

Something tells me the trip has only just begun!









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