Tuesday, September 2, 2014

Goodbye Summer.

"Love; it will not betray you, dismay or enslave you, It will set you free. Be more like the man you were made to be. - Mumford & Sons

I think I've been a little more emotional lately. All the pregnancy/breastfeeding hormones are coming to a close and my body is so ready to be done with all of it. It's been a year of constant change in my body and the roller coaster has to end.

So fall is coming. My fireplace beckons me with its smells and patches of yellow leaves are spotted on my neighborhood trees. Minus the fact that its bloody hot out this week and the humidity is insane, I'm wishing upon a pumpkin spice latte for a cool day to put my hair up in a bun, throw my moccs on and grab my new leather bomber jacket while I take the kids out on a walk. I'm ready to be skinny and in my cute fall clothes.

So how are things? well... great! I've had like one super rough day in two months. So I would say that life isn't bad at all. Atlas is growing so fast, and Laef is using full sentences to talk to me and Brandon. His interests have turned from measuring cups and fake food to cars, trains, airplanes, school buses, tractors... anything with wheels. He is loud, he is everywhere, he is constant, he is sweet, he is a ball of boy energy with one level: non-stop. From the moment I get him out of his bed, till he lies down at night.... he runs, and laughs, and talks, and has the sweetest personality. I'm in love with his love.

Atlas is just so interesting to watch. Here is this three month old who is crazy strong. He's trying to crawl, he's wanting to be doing what Laef is doing, he beams when Laef hugs him, touches him, looks at him. oh man! Laef is really sweet with him, although the "Mine!" thing has started, where if Atlas even looks at his toys, it's "MINE!" ... oh joy.

This sums up their relationship a little..

I think about them as brothers when they are teenagers or adults and I'm just so excited to see what they become.

Atlas turned 3 months last Saturday. I'm crazy about his smile. 

He sleeps only on his tummy and his floor time is always tummy time, cause he doesn't really love being on his back. This kid is ready to go! He just wants to be in the thick of things. I'm so in for it. He also loves TV, so I'm having to watch him. I don't think I want him watching stuff yet.

A few weeks ago we took Laef to the splash park in Charlotte. I took my camera to take some beautiful images of him. He gets either super quiet around kids or becomes the biggest show off there is. It's really fun to watch him interact.

Laef got to meet some pigs and goats recently. He wasn't too thrilled about it.

And then, we took a trip to the beach with my folks and Brandon's folks. We were able to get a small condo on the beach for a couple nights, and my mom agreed to take Laef out on the beach and watch him so I could take some photos of him. He loves the ocean and is fearless on the beach. My mom was a hero, chasing him before he got attacked by the waves.

My heart was swooning as I watched Laef run full force at the water and hit the salty waves. He is a little free spirit and I can't get enough of his growing beauty.

I mean... come on ....

As school has started back, I have become much more thankful for every moment with my boys. The other day, Brandon and I double-strollered it down the driveway to take a walk and I started crying... the same driveway that I'm pushing my kids up in a stroller may be the same driveway I say goodbye to them as they leave for college someday. Our neighbors up the street just packed their daughters bags and took her to Oklahoma for college; I'm not so far removed from that to think that I have all the time in the world with these two boys. My days are just fleeing so quickly. Heck, summer is over already. My second child is over three months old. I have TWO KIDS! I just want to love them, and love well. I want to squeeze every last bit of sweetness out of the fleeing seconds of this season.

I am so much more aware of the seasons coming and going since I've had kids. I am currently in a season with small babes and then I'll be in a season of raising children, and then teenagers, and then dancing with my sons at their weddings, and then Lord willing I'll be a grandma to sweet grandkids. I hope to still travel the world with my first love. The season of getting up with Atlas in the middle of the night is pretty much ending. He is sleeping through the night. wow... how fast. He is now in his crib and the Moses basket sits empty by my bed.

The day will come when my kids say goodbye to us in our driveway, and we will walk the empty halls of our house and remember: "It was just a few seasons ago that,our boys filled the halls with toys, and we stubbed our toes on the bouncy more times than we can count." The laundry isn't piled high any more, and there aren't patches of oatmeal dried on the wood floors from breakfast leftovers.

I just can't help but cry and cry when I think about how beautiful my life has been since having these boys. I want to love them well and raise them well.

I feel like I am a broken record in every blog, but I guess it's the one thing I really care about--being fully present, remembering and giving my whole heart to the season that I am in. In a moment, or in a nap time, it can change. (Atlas wakes up and he looks different, or any day Laef could climb out of his crib...oh Lord!)

So, I think that's all I have for now. I'm sure I have a million other things I want to say...

I'm just going to sit back and watch my boys love one another and I'm going to love watching them do that. Laef starts school twice a week this week. I'll have some time to clean my toilets.

Happy Fall!

Friday, July 25, 2014


"There are all kinds of love in this world but never the same love twice." - F Scott Fitzgerald

Two has come to our house. It has a face of years and months. Two years of sweet wonderful little darling stud man Laef. He struts into a room with his golden hair and large dark brown eyes. He loves being tickled, he loves fruit with all his heart, he loves Daniel Tiger, Curious George, eating, snacking, playing outside, tupper wear, fake food, cups, talking, piggy backing on Brandon, playing with balls, pushing his fake lawn mower and drinking from my water bottle. 

Two Sunday's ago on Laef's birthday we threw him a monkey party on our wonderful back porch. I spent a few afternoons making monkey jungle vines for his party. It turned out pretty cute. We had about 25 people come and celebrate our little monkey. We had a small pool and sprinklers for the kids to play in. At the end of the day I fell into Brandon's arms exhausted and started crying. Through my tears I told Brandon "I had so many fears of having kids and Laef is the result in spite of my fears.. he is incredible. They are incredible." (haha... as I'm typing this Laef is throwing a tantrum and being extremely difficult today. All of my words will be tested. It's still sweet though, tears, fits, smiles, hard moments, sweet moments... it's all a journey that is incredible.)

Our friends Josiah and Nicole (who made the watermelon pirate ship last year for Laef's birthday) made the monkey fruit for him.

Laef got so many toys- his own Ikea pots and pans, his own tool box, Mr Potato heads, his own broom, clothes, toms, fake food, blocks, bath toys, PJ's and a monkey back pack.

It really was a sweet party for my boy and I'm so happy that I could throw him such a fun time. At the end of the day I asked Laef "Did you have a fun day?" and he said "I did." (Brandon is his father.)

So two has come to us in yet another sweet way. Two months of my beautiful Atlas. His smiles are overtaking my heart. I don't love him like Laef and I don't love Laef like Atlas. That's why the quote at the top is quite true. The love I feel is so different and unique for each of them. Laef and I have history together. Atlas is coming in and adding onto the story with such grace. My favorite is watching his face whenever Laef walks into the room, walks by him, or plays close by. Atlas is pure smiles. He loves Laef so much already, and Laef loves kissing baby A.

For two years now my song for Laef has been Brooke Fraser's "Sailing" song. We sing it to him religiously before bed. It is a staple in showing love to my boy. Laef used to lay sweetly in my arms and coo at me when I would sing it. Now, he is the energizer bunny before bed, running in and out of his tee pee and trying to get me and Brandon to play. Every now and then he lets him hold him tightly and he lays his head on my chest. I knew the calm baby would someday be a roaring boy who loves to rough play and likes to dive at you full blast. And I know Atlas will be that too. There is such a sweetness in looking back on every night we have sang that song and seeing the growth of a boy who would stare at you with calmness to a little man who thinks your so beautiful, yet wants to hit you with his toys. The "Sailing" song is my song for Laef. And I would read to him a Nancy Tillman book every night. (They are my favorite)

So with Atlas, I thought.... I need a song for my boy. I want this to be our song. I don't want to sing Laef's song to Atlas because me and Atlas will have a different relationship then Laef and I. So this song became my song.

If the stars were mine I'd give them all to you
 I'd pluck them down right from the sky And leave it only blue 
I would never let the sun forget To shine upon your face 
So when others would have rain clouds You'd have only sunny days 
If the stars were mine I'd tell you what I'd do I'd put the stars right in a jar And give 'em all to you

If the birds were mine I'd tell them when to sing
 I'd make them sing a sonnet When your telephone would ring
 I would put them there inside the square Whenever you went out 
So there'd always be sweet music Whenever you walk about 
If the birds were mine I'd tell you what I'd do
 I'd teach the birds such lovely words And make 'em sing for you 

 If the world was mine I'd paint it gold and green 
I'd make the oceans orange For a brilliant color scheme
 I would color all the mountains Make the sky forever blue 
So the world would be a painting And I'd live inside with you I
f the world was mine I'd tell you what I'd do 
I'd wrap the world in ribbons And then give it all to you 
I'd teach the birds such lovely words And make 'em sing for you 
I'd put those stars right in a jar and Give them all to you - Melody Gardot

I also started reading the book "You are my I love you" - (Thank you Sharon)

I am your parent you are my child
 I am your quiet place, you are my wild 
I am your calm face, you are my giggle 
I am your wait, you are my wiggle 
I am your audience, you are my clown 
I am your London Bridge, you are my falling down 
I am your Carrot Sticks, you are my licorice 
I am your dandelion, you are my first wish 
I am your water wings, you are my deep 
I am your open arms, you are my running leap 
I am your way home, you are my new path 
I am your dry towel, you are my wet bath 
I am your dinner you are my chocolate cake 
I am your bedtime, you are my wide awake
 I am your finish line, you are my race 
I am your praying hands, you are my saving grace 
I am your favorite book, you are my new lines 
I am your nightlight, you are my sunshine 
I am your lullaby, you are my peek-a-boo 
I am your kiss goodnight, you are my I love you Author: Maryann K Cusimano

So life with two boys? Not as hard yet as I imaged. I think about having another one already. (yah, I know... crazy) Yesterday I had a moment as I folded clothes and the two boys were sleeping.... the rain began to fall outside and the summer rain smell filled my room as I opened my windows and listened. I started crying looking around my room and outside. There is nothing whimsical about folding clothes (trust me) but I realized how incredibly happy I am. Never in all my days have I felt such happiness. Even on the hard days, there is a glimmer of sweet and pure happiness that unfolds in the chaos. I've learned to bend down and hug Laef more. To sit on the kitchen floor and watch him play hard with his toys. We pretend together, we laugh together, we make tents together, we walk outside together, play in water, play in the rain... my boys are my best friends, my sweet wonder.

I have learned so much that "things" cannot fill your soul with happiness.

Toys on my floor are a sweet reminder to me that my boys won't always be in my home. Dirty bottles in the sink that seem to never go away, remind me that my sweet Atlas is healthy and eating well. So we must enjoy their toys and their laughter as much as we can. (I do not feel this way about dirt, and spills and messes that are dirty. I'm Mrs. clean.)

So here are some crappy quality photos for your enjoyment. ;D Thanks to the lifeproof case my phone doesn't take great photos anymore. I'm not crazy about the case but when you have a two year old... a phone that takes blurry photos is better then no phone at all. 

The things we do for chiken.

My best friend Sharon came to see me last week. <3

So that is all for now. Brandon and I are having a date tonight, and that is a rare event. I have weddings for the next few weekends and we are finishing getting our office done and functional. We may even buy our first TV. (wow! right?) I'm happy with life. I'm thankful, so so thankful for the joy that coats my house.

Till next time. <3