My inspiration for this record of my days:

“The biggest mistake I made [as a parent] is the one that most of us make. . . . I did not live in the moment enough. This is particularly clear now that the moment is gone, captured only in photographs. There is one picture of [my three children] sitting in the grass on a quilt in the shadow of the swing set on a summer day, ages six, four, and one. And I wish I could remember what we ate, and what we talked about, and how they sounded, and how they looked when they slept that night. I wish I had not been in such a hurry to get on to the next thing: dinner, bath, book, bed. I wish I had treasured the doing a little more and the getting it done a little less” -Anna Quindlen

Friday, August 24, 2012

Becca Boo

My little Becca Boo turned 15 this month!  How in the world did that happen?

From this:

becca and mom

To this:

becca 20 mos.

To this!  (She’s gonna love me for posting that!)


We were starting a month of extra healthy eating as of August 1st, so we had her real birthday cake request a week early.  Chocolate chip cookie dough cheesecake!  Yum!


On her actual birthday I made her a delicious custard sweetened with honey.  She was a really good sport about it.


The only thing that makes it OK for her to grow up so fast, is the fact that she’s doing it so well.  I couldn’t be happier with the person Rebecca is turning out to be.

She is so responsible.  I don’t worry at all about her getting her homework done on time, or doing her best at the jobs she commits to.  She keeps her word and prepares for her future.

She loves my babies.  I love watching her enjoy her little brothers.  They can tell that she loves them, and are so excited to see her when she comes home.  She will be a great mother.

She is forgiving.  In her teenage world, feelings can get hurt easily, and she has had her share of hurt feelings.  But when someone is unkind, she really tries to give them the benefit of the doubt.  She forgives them and does a great job of letting it go.

She’s learning to navigate well the ups and downs of being a girl.  She is really good at realizing when she is the one “feeling cranky” and takes responsibility for her actions.  Moodiness happens to the best of us, and she is learning early to manage it well.

She is fun.  I love to listen to Rebecca and Savannah giggling in their room. (When they should be sleeping!)  I have countless silly absurd videos on my camera.  Someday I will treasure those, right?

She is beautiful.  I worry a little about all those poor boys that are starting to hover around her.  Her dad is just a little bit overprotective!

She is a good communicator.  I love that she shares stories and details with me about what goes on in her life.  She opens up easily and isn’t afraid to talk about how she feels.

So…. Happy Birthday Rebecca! I’m so glad you were born!

Monday, August 13, 2012

So much more of me

In the Disney movie Pete’s Dragon, there is a scene where a chubby lady is mad at the traveling quack doctor.  She claims that his special diet pills made her gain a bunch of weight.  His defense is “Ah… but now there is so much more of you to love!” That seems to satisfy her.

Last night I was lying in my bed looking at a recently-hung wedding picture of Jeff and I.

wedding 1

I was trying to remember what it felt like to be that girl, and I found that I couldn’t.

I remember that she was happy and enthusiastic, with lots of good ideas and goals.  But there was so much that she didn’t know.  So much that she couldn’t understand, because she had never experienced it.

She didn’t know how comforting it is to wake up every morning for 16 years next to her best friend.

She didn’t know how much fun you can have, even when you’re a poor, married student.

She didn’t know yet that she actually enjoys teaching Sunday School, or that she’s a pretty decent choir director.

She couldn’t imagine how hard it is to be pregnant 7 times, or comprehend the overwhelming joy of rocking and loving that precious little baby once they finally arrive.

She hadn’t ever considered the effort it would take to try and provide healthy food for so many hungry people.  Every single day.  (It’s a good thing she didn’t see that one coming, cuz she sure as heck didn’t know how to cook!  She would have been terrified!)

She didn’t know the secure feeling of knowing all of her precious children are tucked safely in their beds, or the unsettled feeling when someone is missing.

She had never felt responsible for another person’s well-being; physical, emotional, academic, spiritual, etc., etc., etc.  She didn’t know how strong she would need to be to carry that load sometimes.

As I was thinking about all that I have learned over the last 16 years, I felt rich and full, if that makes sense.  I could see how my life’s experiences have stretched me and shaped me.  They have made my soul expand and deepened my understanding and my capacity to feel joy.

So back to Pete’s Dragon, now there is so much more of me!  Yes, there are the obvious extra pounds and wrinkles, but even those I wouldn’t trade.  Hopefully in 30 years I will look back on this post and smile, and think “ahh… but there is so much that she didn’t know.”

Friday, August 10, 2012

Big Brothers


Big brothers are the best!  They can do so many amazing things!  Just ask Simon.

Yesterday Josh stayed home from school.  He had thrown up the day before, but yesterday he was hopping and skipping (he can never just walk anywhere) all over the house. He decided first thing in the morning that he would spend his free day with Simon.


They sat down to make a list of all the fun things they wanted to do. 

Blow bubbles

Read books

Jump on the tramp

Make forts

Play a game

Climb a tree

Play puppies in space

It was an action packed day.  Full of all the fun things that Simon could dream up.

One of the other kids mumbled under their breath, “If I had a free day home, that is NOT how I would spend it!”

Instantly, my mind jumped forward 20 years to when Simon will be reminiscing about his childhood.  He will remember his big brother Josh with a little bit of magic.  How Josh could build the best forts, and blow the biggest bubbles.  How Josh always made him feel so special.

Maybe Josh should have been in school.  But if you ask me, I would say that the way he spent his day was eternally more valuable!