Thursday, May 18, 2017

When May Is Rushing Over You

My favorite adventure as a mom is being at home and watching my children find their way in our home. I love watching them create their own play, whether they're outside or inside. To watch them figure out their own way around my home, their home, our home is one of my greatest excitements! I try to act like I'm casually watching, but inside I'm on the edge of my seat. I nerd out over the simplest thing, "oh my gosh they're all huddled around a pile of dirt and poking it with a stick. They are the best things to walk the planet." 

I've collected a few pictures of the past couple months. They are nothing special, but they speak the world to me. It's crazy to think that my personal theme song for my high school graduation can have so much power in a totally different stage of life. 10,000 Maniacs get that mom feeling too, and their words add to mine in an effort to somehow define the joy that I feel in this season. 

When May is rushing over you with desire to be part of the miracles you see in every hour.

Sunday, May 14, 2017

Welcome: Trucks and Babies

I never realized how many construction trucks were on the road until I had a toddler point them out to me. Ridge is in truck mode lately, his favorites being the trash truck and construction trucks. 

Recently the house across the street lost a tree and we had two days of entertainment for Ridge. 

As precious as it was, Fern's attentiveness to his experience was just as adorable. She is absolutely loving in her role as big sister to Ridge and Lark. When Burl's at school she sets the tone with her calm joy. 

Trucks and babies will always be welcomed at our home. 

Monday, May 8, 2017

Such A Lovable 2

It's been four days of partying and Ridge has loved all of it. He's definitely turning into the life of the party around here and is always a fun-loving charmer. Everybody loves Ridge and Ridge loves everybody! We were all excited about his celebrations, but his adoring older brother and sister took a special interest in it. 

Let's do a recap of the weekend:

1. Friday we had a truck/Cinco De Mayo birthday party for him, a natural crossover for a two year old, right? The party planned itself, quesadilla bar, massive amount of guacamole, and a chocolate truck cake. The good times rolled...

Ridge absolutely loved his cake. He didn't take one bite of it, but he moved it around the table and floor with his new little trucks. My dad called me the next day. Through his tears, he encouraged me so well. He said watching Ridge tear up a piece of cake, he thought, "oh no! Ridge shouldn't do that." Instead, he said that he was encouraged watching me let Ridge do his own thing. That call meant to much to me. (Thanks, Dad.)

We finally convinced Ridge to open presents and he had even more fun. He got more trucks and a water table. He loved the toys, the thrill, and the attention. 

We got a family picture, even though getting a focused picture of all six of us is proving difficult. 

2. Saturday we didn't do much at all. It was a very slow-paced day at home, just what we needed! Ridge got his gift from us. A sweet toddle scooter. Now he doesn't have to go to the park and steal everyone else's. 

3. Sunday night we did our new favorite tradition: we took the birthday boy out for dinner with just Mom and Dad. This is our favorite thing, and it's just as much for us as it is for the kids. We love getting to devote all of our attention to one child. Ridge loved being silly for us, drawing on the kids menu with us, and listening to important stories like The Day You Were Born and What The Trash Truck Does. 

4. Monday (today) was his actual birthday. The kids weren't going to let it go by without a couple of special treats. They suggested candles in the waffle and ice cream after school. Yes and yes!

We love our Ridge. Ridgey. Ridgerator. Celebrating him was easy!

Sunday, May 7, 2017

Lark's First Camping Trip

Recently we met with an empty nest couple to pick their brains about parenting. Among all the good advice and perspective, they said that one of the things they did right was family camping trips. John and I immediately high-fived each other, because we put in the sweat of relocating our family to the woods on a regular basis. 

They said that there was something about camping that brought their family together. Their kids got along better, they got along better, they had an easier time with their children on their camping trips. We feel the same way about it. 

John and I always notice how much longer the weekend feels when we're camping. Often our weekend family time flies by, but when we're camping it stretches out to a full time of good old fashion family togetherness. With the hustle of raising four children, we cling on to any ways that we can make time feel slower and longer. 

This was Lark's first official camping trip and he did great. Babies at this age are great campers, and they are happy spending all their time out of doors. 

We finally branched out of our usual park and tried somewhere new, which was just as beautiful. I had to bail early on our hike to feed Lark, but I can't wait until we return again to explore. The woods and creek were breathtaking! 

Our trip was made better by including our friends and neighbors. All the kids got along so well. They picked flowers (weeds), road bikes and scooters, played in the water pump, ran around, and entertained each other. John was just commenting about how easily our kids play with other kids and how cool he thought it was. 

We closed out the trip with a visit from Pops, because all the good camping in middle Tennessee is within an hour of his farm. 

It was another great camping trip for our family. However this feeds into how our children are shaped, we know that it slows down our pace and gives us good family memories. We couldn't be more grateful for that.