Saturday, November 30, 2013

Two. Years. Old.

I can't even believe I'm saying this, but Vesper is going to be two years old tomorrow. TWO. Two years. 24 months. I can't even... I mean... how? I have no idea. But there are a lot of things I want to remember about Vesper at 2 years old. Here are a few of my favorite things about 2-year-old Birdy:
(p.s. read my letter to Vesper at ONE year old here!)

My sweet Vesper Sparrow,
This past year has been a whirlwind. With the arrival of your brother, I worried that you would have trouble adjusting, but you are just as sweet and loving and lively as ever! You know all of your letters on sight, you can count to twenty and recognize numbers to twenty as well. You can recite the alphabet, know lots of colors, and tons of words and songs. You also know many animals and their sounds and you love to play the "What animal is that?" game. You are speaking extremely clearly and can carry on a conversation fairly well. Your favorite song right now is "What Does The Fox Say?" by Ylvis. You also like to sing along with your Sesame Street DVD. Your favorite TV show is Team Umizoomi, but you also love Yo Gabba Gabba and Super Why. Daddy recently introduced you to football and you've enjoyed a few games with him too! Your favorite food is Panera's broccoli cheese soup with potato chips and you're beginning to wield that spoon quite well! Other favorite foods include macaroni and cheese, chicken nuggets, and pink sprinkle donuts. You know, just the healthy stuff.
Every  morning when I come into your room, you give me the biggest smile and tell me all about the stuffed animals in your crib, and every night when we go up to bed, you climb the stairs on your hands and knees. You recently moved from your highchair to a booster seat, and every meal you just have to touch mom and dad with your dirty, sticky hands and give sticky-mouthed kisses!
Your favorite place in the whole world is "Mommabed!" and I really cherish all the cuddles we have there. A close second would be the park or church. You've become such an excellent helper with your baby brother and I love seeing the way you are becoming more and more affectionate with him. I think you'll be great friends soon! Right now, your best friend is Mykah Marlin.
Little girl, you're a force of nature. You are full of everything that is right with the world and it is an absolute joy to be your momma! Thank you for being my sweet Birdy girl!

Wednesday, November 13, 2013

Coming Home.

In all the moving and unpacking craziness, I forgot to mention that it was my anniversary. My one-year anniversary of being a stay-at-home mom.
A year ago I was working in a corporate office managing a small staff of administrative personnel. I had an office and a name plate with a title and I wore heels and pencil skirts every day. I went to meetings and made decisions, I had a fantastic boss and worked with people that I truly liked. But I woke every morning and dropped off my child at daycare and fought the pit in my stomach. When I would pick her up in the evenings, I would fight the knot in my throat as she came crawling towards me with that big goofy grin. I savored every single drop of our weekends together and those days always felt too short. I liked working outside our home. I liked having a place to go and work to do and adults to talk to and decisions to make and emails to send, but my heart was at home.

I knew where I needed to be. I knew that I was being called to work at home as a mother, as a wife. And to be honest, a part of me wasn't necessarily thrilled about it. Because in the same way that I knew that God was calling me to be a stay at home mom, I also knew that it was going to be the hardest job I've ever had. I mean let's be honest, I've quit every job I've ever had as soon as I got tired of it and this would be one job that I couldn't quit. I wouldn't even get to take a personal day when I just wasn't feeling it. And on top of that, it wouldn't exactly be an 8-5 position. 

But another part of me was absolutely thrilled at the prospect of seeing my children learn and grow each and every day and being the one in charge of that growth. My heart ached at the thought of someone else kissing booboos and wiping away hot tears and playing peek-a-boo and even doling out punishment- and it leapt at the thought of extra kisses and cuddles on the couch on lazy, sun-drenched afternoons after a long day of play dates and baking flawless batches of chocolate chip cookies... Maybe the latter wasn't necessarily an accurate depiction of what was to come, but it sure beat the hell out of spread sheets and purchase orders.

So I turned in my notice to my boss (who by the way, was absolutely the best boss I've ever had, and if I ever decide to go back to work, I hope to work for her again) and on my last day, Halloween, I breathed a heavy sigh as I rode the elevator and walked to my car for the very last time. I remember going to bed that night and thinking, "I have no idea what we're going to do tomorrow..." it was all at once anxiety-inducing and exciting. The next morning we had French toast. And we began the long, arduous process of starting a routine- learning each other again. The Dance as I call it.

Since that morning, I wouldn't quite say I've mastered the art of being a domestic goddess. We added one more baby to the mix so ya know... the dance continues. But despite all of my shortcomings, I've seen grace and felt God in more ways than I ever thought possible. I've become acutely aware of my personal struggles and aware of those of my babies as well. Ironically, they seem to be the same struggles most of the time: patience, anger, laziness, and refusal to rest when given the opportunity. I am reminded each and every day of the grace that God heaps on me even as I struggle against it.

There are good days and bad. Most days end up somewhere in the middle, a mix of complete and utter failure, and wildly beautiful, messy moments. After we moved, I packed up my pencil skirts and slacks and felt a small pang, but it wasn't a feeling of longing. It was an affirmation of change. It was validation that I am exactly where I am supposed to be. I wouldn't trade it for the world.

Monday, November 4, 2013

"like an angel in disguise..."

{Hi, friends! I've noticed that a few posts haven't published correctly, so this is actually about a month old. Better late than never, right?}

I am absolutely itching to do some projects- decorate for fall, paint something, create *something*- but the biggest project on my list right now is packing up this house. We're set to close in less than a week and there are just so many little things that need to be stuffed into a box for temporary keeping. But since I can't keep those creative juices at bay for too long, I decided to make Vesper's Halloween costume this year!

Last year, she was the sweetest little lamb I've ever seen
And this year, because she's completely obsessed with the Ylvis song, "What Does The Fox Say?" (seriously, she asks to watch it a thousand times a day and sings I tall day long) the obvious choice was for her to go trick-or-treating as a fox! After seeing a few costumes online, I knew that I wanted a more "homemade" look. Don't get me wrong, the pre-made costumes are cute, but there's just something special (and totally adorable) about sending your kiddo out in a costume that you made at home. So I bought some felt and some fun fur and set to work! The only problem was that I had already boxed and sealed my sewing machine, so I had to stitch all the pieces by hand!

The result was pretty darn cute!

I took her and Grey up to Tulsa to surprise my mother at her office. We went trick-or-treating in my Nana's cul-de-sac later that night and it was just so much fun!

Then there was this handsome little cowboy. He learned to sit up that night!

It was a good one.