Tuesday, May 28, 2013

Wordless Wednesday: Our Long Weekend

My handsome boy is getting so big.

Apparently this is a good place to read.

My babies.

An outfit isn't complete without 4 bows.

How does this happen?

Emma LOVED flying through the air!

Once again, Little J slept the whole time we were on the beach.

Our Family: Through the Husband's Eyes

I cannot put into words how much I love my husband.

Jude's first time in the ocean.

Hi everyone.

I absolutely love this.

Check out the Facebook page.

Thursday, May 23, 2013

Happy Birthday to the Best 6-Year-Old I Know

Lillian Grace,

Your 6th birthday is coming to an end.
In fact, you are probably already tucked into bed and fast asleep,
but I wanted to take this opportunity to tell you how incredible I think you are.
You are such a beautiful, smart, funny, and sweet girl. 
I can't believe you turned six years old today.
It was just a little over three years ago that I met you for the first time.
I will never forget that day.  You were wearing a pretty yellow dress and your hair was in braids.
You had a tiny little voice and the sweetest smile.  I knew right away that you were someone special.
You are so full of energy and life and are truly a joy to be around.
I am honored to have you as a part of my life.  You have held a special place in my heart 
from that very first day we met when you reached up and grabbed my hand to cross the parking lot.
I cherish all the time we get to spend together and I hope you know 
that I love you with all my heart.  Happy birthday beautiful girl.
I hope you had a wonderful day.


Monday, May 20, 2013

Why I Love the Weekends: One-on-One Time

With both the husband and I home on the weekends,
it is easier for each of us to find a few minutes here and there
for quality one-on-one time with each baby.
Don't get me wrong, I love it when all four of us are together,
but one-on-one time with each baby is so special, precious, and meaningful.
Those shared laughs, tickles, and games of peek-a-boo not only enhance our current relationship,
but they also lay the foundation for our future bond.  It is this bond that will help us get through
the hard times that we as parents, daughter, and son are inevitably going to encounter.
The more time and effort Joshua and me put into our relationships with our children now,
the stronger they will be later on down the road, which will hopefully make
even the toughest of decisions and consequences
easier to handle, learn from, and then move forward from.
Every moment with our children can be influential if we let it.

Sunday, May 19, 2013

The Simplest Activity can have a Huge Impact

I've been wanting to write this post for a long time now, 
but diapers have needed to be changed, toys have needed to be picked up, 
bottles have needed to be made, and babies have needed to be rocked.
I guess life as a momma of two babies has gotten in the way, 
and I'm okay with that.  I would put anything on hold for my incredible kids.
But right now, both of my loves are asleep so I thought I would get this done,
or at least started.  We'll see how far I get until one of them wakes up.

A couple months ago I really started to work with Emma on her shapes.
I started with some really basic activities (drawing different shapes on her chalkboard table
and saying what they were and then over exaggerating as she played with her shape sorter.)

Husband called and is giving me a Dave Matthews Band lesson
and if you know my husband then you know there's a lot that goes into this lesson.

Okay, back to Emma and shapes.
She was catching on to the concept and was beginning to identify circles, 
but she didn't seem all that interested.
I knew I needed to come up with a new, more interactive way for her to learn 
her shapes and have fun with it at the same time.
Lucky for me, Emma had just discovered the white board and was fascinated by it.
I decided to use her excitement and her love for her Little People princesses to my advantage.
I asked Emma to pick out four of her princesses and I drew a different shape in each corner
of the white board.  Emma's job was to put a princess inside whatever shape I called out.
She was amazed by this simple activity and had so much fun with it.
She quickly mastered the first four shapes I drew 
so I erased the board and drew four different ones.  Like before, 
she caught on to these shapes right away.  She was very proud of herself.
She gave out a lot of "up tops" (which are high fives) to both me and the princesses.
Soon the princesses even began to dance inside the shapes.
I didn't anticipate the amount of smiles, squeals, laughter, and clapping 
that ended up coming along with this activity, but I am glad she loved it so much.
My baby girl was having the time of her life and learning at the same time.
It doesn't get much better than that.

The possibilities are endless when you incorporate a child's interests into learning activities.

Raising Imperfection

Thursday, May 16, 2013

Jude Scott: 5 Months Old

Jude Scott,

Can you believe that I have been cuddling, kissing, and tickling you for 5 months now?
It doesn't seem possible, but thinking about and remembering life without you doesn't
seem possible either.  We may not have been aware of it, but our family was definitely missing
something until we met you at 1:31 in the afternoon on December 15, 2012.
You have fit perfectly into our family and brought all of us so much love and joy
from that very moment.  I don't think God could have blessed us
with a sweeter, more handsome boy.  I am so grateful for you Little J.

You are so incredible J Bird.  There are so many things about this stage in your life
that I wish I could capture in a little bottle so they would last forever.

I think it 's the cutest thing in the world how you giggle every time I pull your shirt down over
your head while I'm getting you dressed.  I look forward to hearing this sweet sound
each and every day.  Most kids hate to get dressed, but you seem 
to think it's hilarious, which I think is absolutely adorable.

Although I hate to see you upset, I think it's kind of funny how you roll over onto your tummy
and then get "stuck" because you seem to forget that you know how to roll back over.
I don't understand why you do this and I wish you would consistently start rolling from your tummy
to your  back because I think you would enjoy playing on the floor a lot more if you did.
But I know you'll get it here soon and then you will be rolling from one end of the house to the other.

The way you laugh when you are getting tickled in just the right spot is priceless.
It's as if you put your whole body behind your laugh to make it stronger.
During a really good tickle session you laugh so hard that it sometimes sounds like you're in pain,
but I know you're not.  I guess it's just the way your squeals and grunts come together.
Either way, I think it's so cute and I absolutely love tickling you and seeing your big gummy smile.

I love how you always, as in every single time, grab a hold of my shirt while I rock you to sleep.  
I think it's your way of holding me back and it's absolutely precious.

I love your wild hair.  It is uncontrollable.  I try brushing it down, but within 30 minutes it
is back to standing up in all directions.  It makes me laugh 
because it is so you: loose and care free.

I love you so much Little Man.  You are an amazing baby.
Everything about you, your personality, your movements, your reactions, scream boy
and I absolutely love it, but at the same time you have the perfect amount of sweetness in you.
You're still Momma's little cuddle bug and I hope it stays that way for years to come.
There is nothing I love more than getting all cozy with you and holding you tight.
Thank you for the pure joy that you have brought me throughout the past 5 months.
You are truly a blessing.  I am honored to call you my son and it is my privilege to take care of you,
comfort you, nurture you, teach you, and encourage you.  I will do all of these things,
and so much more every day for the rest of my life. 

Signs that you're getting older:
- You hold your own bottle.
- You are starting to sit up by yourself.
- Once you see a bottle, you get upset if it's not given to you right away.
- You are starting to get your knees under you and your butt up in the air when you're on your tummy.

Your Likes:
- ocean friends
- Dylan the Duck
- playing Peek-a-Boo
- when Daddy plays the guitar

Your Dislikes:
- being left alone
- getting "stuck" on your belly
- having your bottle taken away so you can burp
- sleeping anywhere other than cuddled up in bed with Momma

I love you Jude Scott Williams.