Tuesday, August 4, 2015

The Sting of Death

I had just finished reading a description of the fifth video released about Planned Parenthood. I was trying to read between stop lights in the heavy northern Virginia traffic. What has happened to our country?
Soon I found myself trying to wipe my eyes between stoplights. The crying wouldn't stop. My heart is wretched in two and I grieve.
The boys are in the backseat bickering and whining. Their tattling is ringing in the air. Why are they acting like this?
Harrison has a scraped knee, Jefferson lost his Iron Man, and Wilson is using his t-shirt to wipe his nose and I'm taking out the rising emotions in myself on the brake pedal being smashed into the floor board.
The noises filling the car aren't the most pleasant of sounds but they have breath and life to make them. They may get scrapes and stitches, lost toys and bad dreams, but they live. They play. They dream. They grow. They live! 
Knitted in secret they grew and thrived.
Yet in the secret, other babies are murdered at the hands of evil. 
I sit at the stoplight surrounded with whining, precious whining, staring at my phone sitting blank on the console remembering the words on it's screen moments before.
I can't read them again. The brake pedal couldn't take anymore.
I think of my babies I never held on this earth I would have moved Heaven and Earth to hold. Those precious babies I loved. I grieved their loss. And the same hurt, the same sorrow grips my being in the same crushing grief. I can't breath.
My brake pedal is glad to be relived of it's floorboard duty as we arrive home and I sweep four squabbling children in my embrace. It's tight, it's raw, it's the surrounding ourselves with life. Their silence in the moment is deep as if they know the solemn grief of my heart. I look deep in their beautiful eyes and wordlessly charge them in this fight.
America is under attack, the sacredness of life is being extinguished. But we are fighting. 
Oh my God give us strength. I can't handle the horror on my own. 
We're defenders of life.

Sunday, August 2, 2015

Now You Know

Did you know Lego's could multiply faster than rabbits?
 Did you know water balloons take three hours to fill up and 30 seconds to be thrown and exploded?
Did you know mustard should just be embraced as a permanent accessory to little boy's t-shirts; it's not washing out.
 Did you know toothpaste could be used for wall art?
Did you know goldfish crackers make perfect hand grenades for wars over living room fort rights?
 Did you know the toy section at Target emits a homing signal only kids can hear and effectively lures them in?
 Did you know living things can be tucked inside pockets?
 Did you know the equation "the more recently a floor as been mopped is directly proportional to the size of mess that it will attract" is a home economical fact?
 Did you know your shirt will be used as a tissue?
 Did you know you will never finish a meal on your own again? 
 Did you know you could never go to a grocery store without being asked at least once on every aisle for something not on your list?
 Did you know car rides, bathrooms, waiting rooms, and libraries will never be quiet again?
Did you know how so worth it it all is? Did you know how incredibly rich life is, even though your purse will now hold fruit snacks and Iron Man band-aids? 
I do, and I love. it. all.

Wednesday, July 22, 2015

A Comedy of Errors

You'd think four kids into this parenting thing we would have mastered a thing or two.
But even after six years of full time mommy status, I'll do something royally absent minded and wonder who in the world decided I was grown up enough to be responsible for little humans.
Case in point, taking four kids to the beach for a long weekend - seems innocent enough.
But then my mommy brain lapsed on packing necessities and somehow we ended up with a sore lack of clothing options for the infant...
...swim diapers for the toddler, snacks for bottomless pits, and shampoo and conditioner for me.
And while yes there are stores nearby to purchase aforementioned items, it wasn't until we were in the moment in which we needed them that we realized I had forgotten them.
Which is why I found myself lugging a sand covered toddler with a loaded diaper through a hotel with an infant strapped to my chest who's wearing the same outfit for the second day due to the shortage.
Or how we got to the hotel way past dinnertime and everyone was asking what was for dinner and all I had were two smushed packages of fruit snacks and a granola bar.
But the best thing about doing this parenting thing is you quickly learn to think on your feet and you kind of evolve into a Macgyver in your own right.
Problem solving skills go through the roof, and even the sandy dirty diaper moments become comical memories worth the momentary, "what was I thinking?"
These four awesome kids are turning out ok even with my occasional judgment lapses. They still love me and trust me despite my lack of granola bars on hand.
Our four days at the beach were completely perfect, even if we ended up having to walk a few miles to get lunch, spill water all over the restaurant menus, turn hand towels into sumo wrestler style temporary diapers, and ended up using the complimentary shampoo.
It's the stories I get to tell them over and over again from trips like this that make them dissolve into giggles over the silliness that are completely worth every hilarity filled moment of parenthood.

Friday, July 17, 2015

A Surprise the Size of the Ocean

Matt works some pretty crazy hours.
We couldn't be more proud of the man he is, how dedicated he is to his work, and how hard he does it to take care of us.
But with the long days and late hours, days will go by before the boys get some time with him.
So Matt had a brilliant idea to escape to the beach, just the six of us, and it was perfect!
The boys had no clue what we were doing. They didn't know until the minute Matt opened our hotel room and the ocean was sprawling beyond our patio doors.
Once the shrieks and jumping off furniture calmed down we all ran out onto the beach. We didn't take anytime to change into bathing suits but that didn't matter at all to the boys who ran straight into the waves.
The sun was setting, the beach was almost empty, and yet we stayed out playing in the waves, letting LilyMae touch the sand and sea for the first time, and watching our silly boys drip with salt water as the stars came out.
We had an incredible three days playing on the ocean front, spending time as a family and having Matt all to ourselves. It was needed and perfect, and may have further confirmed our dreams of one day making the beach our home. ;)

Tuesday, July 14, 2015

Blue Racecars

Jeff makes his decisions slowly, methodically, tediously.
I can see his stress building as he pressures himself to make the perfect decision, so he'll procrastinate making any just to avoid it.
This means choosing a shirt to wear in the morning can escalate to life or death status in his eyes.
So choosing a birthday party theme included months of wavering as we scratched dozens of ideas off the list. Jefferson maintained his methodical approach of waiting for the perfect choice to come along.
Out of the blue the perfect idea came to him and since he only makes a decision once he is certain, "blue racecars" became the theme to my four year old birthday boy.
I honestly don't know where the idea for "blue race cars" came from since we don't watch NASCAR or any kind of vehicle racing for that matter. But he was resolute and I set out to give him the best "blue race care" party ever.
He had a blast choosing blue cars for his cake, watching the blue flags being hung across the table, and running under the "finish line" banner his aunt made for him. That night he threw his sweet little arms around my neck and thanked us profusely for his "blue race car" party.
As a spontaneous, last minute, act before I think, type of personality, I have a lot to learn from my little man. I'm proud of the way he makes sure before he makes a decision. It's a character trait that can save him from many bad choices down the road and I love the wisdom he's already demonstrating in his decision making. 
Happy "Blue Race Car" party J-Man! I love you!

Saturday, July 11, 2015

2 Month LilyMae

LilyMae, you are now two months old, ok slightly over two months old, and officially moved from newborn to baby.
There is no denying your alertness, your eager observation of your wild big brothers, and the way you fight any coddling.
You prefer to be carried high on a shoulder so you can have your head up high looking out over the world from your nosy perch.
You are all smiles and "coos" as long as you are getting eye contact and in someone's arms.
You are the sweetest little girl in the whole world. You are perfectly content to go with the flow at all times. You eat, sleep, and entertain yourself just about anywhere we are.
You only get fussy when you're not feeling well, super hungry, or need to be changed. Otherwise you stare up at us with your gorgeous deep blue ocean eyes and we melt.
You are in size one diapers and size 0-3 months clothes, though I tried a 6 month dress on you recently and because of your long little self it fit!
We love you sweet girl and love the pink you've added to our world! Your big brothers, mommy, and daddy can't get enough of you! It's been a blessed two months and we can't wait for the many years ahead of getting to you know you!