Posts Tagged 'love'

when you hitch your horse

Remember the other…week? Month? Whenever it was when I said I was just a punk kid, writing a blog, who knew nothing?

I’m learning the same goes for marriage.

Waaay long time ago I didn’t really…how do I say this? I mean grammar is purposely bad here so let’s not mess this part up….the whole vows thing. Words. They were just words that everyone says during a wedding. It was like a rite of passage. I mean who really sits themselves down to go through every vow and think it through to its inevitable completion?

No one. 

Because you can’t.

And I don’t even like to say can’t and we try to live the message that “can’t” isn’t a word we understand in our house, because there is always a solution to every problem…but for this particular thing, I’m going to say can’t.

Because you cannot possibly know what is going to happen over the years and down the path that will challenge and stretch and pull and tear those vows to their breaking point. There will be things that occur and words spoken and moments where you just want to throw in the towel because you. are. over. it. all.

Tim and I have had our share of all of those things. Big things and small things and repetitive things that aren’t even a big deal until they keep happening over and over and over again to the point they are the most exasperating thing in the history of ever OMG CAN YOU PLEASE JUST NOT WITH THE LEAVING THE THING ON THE COUNTER YOU DON’T WANT TO PUT AWAY BECAUSE YOU DON’T KNOW WHERE TO PUT IT SO IT JUST SITS FOR ETERNITY COLLECTING DUST AND MOCKING ME UNTIL I MOVE IT…to a place we can no longer find it when we need it again three months later because where I stored it makes no sense because I don’t know where to f-ing put it either.

Those things. They’ll make you crazy if you don’t learn how to see the humor and laugh about it.

We have finally, mostly, made it to that point. Unless someone woke up on the wrong side of the bed and obvious jokes aren’t even funny, can you just stop it right now, can’t you see it’s not even funny, until the grouch decides to make a joke out of the clear blue sky and all of a sudden think they’re funny. Except now, by that point, the person who was initially making jokes is in a pissy mood because the grouch went and rained on their sunny picnic….

It never ends people. Marriage is the same for all of us. Why do you think the comedian’s bits are so funny?
Because we’ve alllllllll been there. We are allllll there, every single day. We all have had the same conversations and the same arguments and the same ridiculous fights over the pettiest things. Over and over again.

The difference, I am slowly learning, is not not let all of the small things eat you up and build up and to deal with the things bothering you, even if you think it’s easier to just keep your mouth shut.

It isn’t.

You may think that’s the best way, but it’s really the worst way. You’ll fill up with resentment and lash out at seemingly unrelated things because the other person has no freaking clue that they are making you crazy (I don’t know how they don’t know, but trust me, they don’t know unless you actually tell them in plain English).

It means not walking out on a heated conversation even though you have zero desire to participate. 

It means you actually laugh – finally – when the other person makes a valid point during an argument in a funny way. You both laugh and you both are done. You kiss and make up and no one holds onto anything after it’s done, because it’s done.

We will be married ten years this year. And it has taken me that long to figure out some of this stuff. To let go. To understand what all of those vows really mean when they are put into practice.

If you’re going to decide to hitch your horses to the same wagon, then it’s for the whole ride. No one gets to cut loose and go around the river or rocky trail and leave the other to maneuver through the difficult part on their own. You go through it together. Side by side. Leaving all your shit behind you. You pull your wagon and you grumble at each other but you keep moving forward at the same pace.

That’s when the magic happens, because that’s when you learn the most about yourself, about your partner, and about how to get through the rough spots together in order to come out on the other side stronger and closer to each other. You trust each other more. You learn each other’s strengths and weak spots. You learn how to keep the other person going when they don’t think they can take another step.

So, if you aren’t married, small tidbit of advice: you better decide now if you enjoy spending all of your time with your horse – especially during the bad and boring parts – and you really better like your wagon, because it’s coming with you every step of the way.

it’s not what i thought it was

Tim and I went back and read through a bunch of my old blogs….man I was a know nothing punk kid! Legit what in the world? No words…I mean I guess it’s all a process but I really thought I was something, huh?

I know better now. I have no idea what I’m doing and I have no problem admitting that. 

Kids will do that to you. Bring you to your breaking point and then a second later make you laugh. You realize that nothing is really as big of a deal as you thought. Life really isn’t that serious and those things I thought were super important? Like OMG I need to match and I have to have makeup on always and if I’m going to send out a letter you better be damn well sure that stamp is 100% straight (sorry Mase…all those wedding RSVP envelopes you spent hours on…now that I think about it, as hell bent as I was on making sure you made sure the stamps were perfect becauussse…..they were coming right back to me? I mean really, self. Did I even care about the placement of the stamps? No. No I did not.)

All those things…are they really soooooooooooooooo serious??

No.

They’re not.

And when I read back through some of the things that mortified me?

Hysterical.

All the things I thought I was going to be and do after having Kellan??

Bwahahahahahhahahaha

None of it happened. Not a one.

Also? Having kids means F makeup and cute outfits. Did I shower? Are my clothes clean? Double check? 

Then we are having ourselves an excellent day.

So, back to whatever I was saying….oh! …I’m realizing now that wisdom is really learning to be comfortable with your “plans” never working out. Wisdom is letting go. Not allowing silly, trivial things to ruin a day. Being okay with  being present in the moment instead of trying to plan the next one. Saying what you think instead of being worried about what someone might think of what you have to say.

Wisdom.

It’s not what I thought it meant when I was a punk kid. It is not knowing everything.

It’s realizing that you know nothing.

I mean of course we all know stuff. That isn’t the point of wisdom. It’s more than that. A wise person…they understand. I don’t think I’m far enough in my wiseness to properly explain…

Anyhow. What I have realized is important are family and friends. We are sorely lacking in that department.

Sorely lacking.

So much family drama has left that circle really small. I keep having dreams of reconciliation – probably because I know how much everyone is missing.

I purposely have no spoken to or allowed my dad into my life for….probably a little over 7 years? We didn’t even give him our address when we moved. There are a myriad of reasons…but it boils down to how I was treated growing up and his life choices and me not wanting that kind of influence on any children Tim and I had. Not during the formative years.

…so he got my address over Christmas because I had to send one of my brother’s Christmas gifts there and I didn’t really think about our address being on the box.

Guess I should have known better.

One that it would be there and two that’d he’d find it.

He sent me a birthday card. 

First one in years.

I was just like….welp. Here we go again.

Part of me feels like I should respond? But the other part of me doesn’t want to open any doors or windows or cracks of any kind.

Then the wisdom comes in my brain. Not that it’s telling me I should be 100% on board with reconciling, but it does say that I should clear the air. Say what I mean and be honest. Whether or not he agrees or cares or does anything about it has nothing to do with me. I can’t change anyone, nor should I try. I should just be honest and then let things fall where they may.

I feel like that is what Tim and I both need to do with our respective family issues.

Clear the air.

Be honest.

And then whatever happens…happens. I really do not think we will be any better or worse off than we are now. 

It will just be as it should. Whatever that means.

Wisdom tells me that 

Let go. 

Say what you mean.

Be present with the ones you love.

I’m totally rambling and need to just stop because where was I even going with this?

I have no idea. I’m wise enough to admit that.

(See how I kind of went full circle? Maybe 3/4 circle?)

(I crack myself up sometimes)

change is…well it really *should* be simple. 

Marriage is a pain in the ass. Honestly. What other arrangement challenges you more than marriage? Mutually. Individually. Mentally. Emotionally. Every way.

I’m not saying this is bad. I’m saying no one really warns you about all of this personal growth you’re going to have to endure…suffer through. Argue about. Bicker. Nag. Complain. Lament.

We fight change so hard. Why?

Is it really so bad to change?

No. No it’s not.

But we drag. it. out. We resist and try to come up with allllllllllll the reasons why they’re wrong and you’re right.

Who really cares though? Why do we care so much? It’s like changing – or evolving – a part of yourself that isn’t really that commendable in the first place…something you wanted to change anyway…it’s like if our significant other calls us out on it, we dig in our heels and decide they are the ones with the problem.

I mean really. Come on. At the end of the day, if you are a kinder, more well rounded person, isn’t that a win for everybody?

I’m super guilty of this. Suuuuuuper guilty. I’m not ashamed or afraid to admit it. Well, admitting it to the person who called me out, aka Tim, that’s probably never going to be easy, but I’m trying to put on my brave pants and just do it. 

In the heat of the moment, I may have plenty of words to defend myself, but deep down it’s really just a facade. Of course when I have a minute to reflect I’ll be all, “Yup. That’s me and that’s definitely not A+ behavior. Really more like C- and I don’t do C-.”

I think being more aware of my resistance and admitting to it, be it right then or three weeks later, is a step in the shiny happy person direction. I’m not perfect and I know that I do plenty that isn’t star quality marriage material. I may not be able to totally wipe the slate but I can at least make concerted efforts to have the other half of the union happy and feeling good about the Status of Us instead of sometimes feeling like it’s us against each other.

All of this reflection came from a major purge over the weekend. We donated so many books…seven boxes of books…and along with all of books were all of our college binders and notes. Among some of my notes I found this “life plan” list I made. On this list included things I wanted in a person I married. 

That freaking list was freaking long. Two pages of college ruled paper long.

It had everything from being romantic to making me laugh to being “brutally honest” and being randomly spontaneous and liking sports and outdoor stuff. It had it all. Where I found the time to think up all of that…I have no idea.

I read the list to Tim to ask him if he thought he fit the various things I wrote down. By the end he was (joking) like,”Welp. I’m at about 50%…sooooo yah. There’s that.”

Then he asked me to answer the same things for myself. If I thought I did any of the things I was desiring of someone else. And you’d think since I wanted those things, then I should also reciprocate, right? It’s only fair.

I looked right at him and said (in a semi-joking way), “I don’t do any of these. I’m not a nice person, remember?”

But the truth of it is that I rarely do any of the things on my own damn list. I do and am some of them, but on the whole…not so much. I’m pretty short tempered and get annoyed easily and as he put it once, “a real peach.” 

And he didn’t mean above sweet one if you catch my drift.

Even though I could list a myriad of reasons why, the truth is exactly what I said to him layer on:

Regardless of how I’m feeling, there’s no excuse for being mean.

And I’m right.

(See what I did there? I can’t even with myself…I’m a mess….and cracking up…)

baby Bista is a……..

Gender Reveal (Kellan)

BOY!!!!!

I have always known, somewhere deep down – maybe call it intuition – that I would only have boys. I even remember having the thought while pulling Kellan in a wagon in our neighborhood in Colorado, probably at least a year ago, if not longer. It went something like, “Do you really want another one? You already know it’ll be a boy.”

It’s like my whole life has set me up to be a mom of boys. I only have brothers. I preferred to play with the boys in my neighborhood growing up (making forts and jumping over bushes and riding skateboards down steep driveways was way more fun than Barbies). I was even envious of my brother being in Boy Scouts. *I* wanted to be in Boy Scouts. Girl Scouts was so boring. I legit would hide during meetings because I didn’t want to see how long it would take for dripping water to fills cup. Bring on the Pinewood Derby (that’s a Boy Scout thing) and camping trips and why can’t I go to the meetings????

As I got older, I felt like I could relate to boys better. I preferred having friends that were boys. I liked stereotypical “boy” activities better. Boys were more interesting and did more interesting things. Boys were not complicated (until I was a teenager, and honestly, I’m pretty sure the overthinking and emotional state we girls are in at that point are what makes that whole thing complicated in the first place).

This is not to say I never had girl friends. I did. I still do. Some of those friends will forever be near and dear to my heart, with years and years of memories.

What I’m saying is, I know boys. I am totally comfortable with boys. Boys are predictable (to me). Boys are well within my comfort zone and I have lots of years of experience with them. I truly enjoy doing the things they like to do. I would be hopelessly lost with a prissy, doll-loving, wants to get mani-pedis, french braid my hair girl. I’d be like….well, to start, I’d need lessons on how to french braid hair.

And how to properly apply makeup.

All that.

Don’t get me wrong, I’m in awe of those girls, mostly because I have never been one and I could never figure out how to be one, though I tried and tried….and tried….and tried.

I think I finally realized somewhere down the age line that that isn’t me, and that’s why I can’t be that person, even though there were times I REALLY WANTED TO BE THAT GIRL.

I’m not. I never will be. And that’s okay.

All this time, all this gravitation toward more “boy” things…has completely prepared me for this journey. I’m more than ready and so very excited that Kellan will have a brother, that we will have another son, that our family will be complete.

I will say that I am sad that Tim will not have a daughter. I mean, yes, it is true we will never know what it is like to raise a girl. We just have to take it as we aren’t supposed to have that experience, that our path has a purpose, and that path and purpose is full of boys. Don’t get me wrong, Tim is super excited about baby Bista. He just knows that this will be the last child to occupy my uterus (though others think we will change our minds…), for a variety of reasons. So, barring adoption (which isn’t something we are considering), there will not be a girl in this house (other than me…hahahahahaha). And that’s just what it is, and honestly, and this goes for every single person and family out there – there need not be any explanation as to why we are happy or sad or anything.

This is our family.

We are all deeply devoted, protective, and completely in love with every single aspect of it. Tim even said to me the other day…and I quote, “We’ve built a life together.”

He is totally right.

We love our family.

We love our life.

It’s as simple as that.

P.S.: And for those wondering what baby Bista’s name will be….stay tuned…until June. Because, for those of you who remember baby sprout (Kellan!), that’s a secret we don’t tell anyone until they are born. I’m pretty sure we drive our family and friends crazy. We don’t even give up initials. Top secret information over here.

I am thankful – December edition. aka one whole year of being thankful!

Hey! We made it! An entire year of thankfulness! I can’t believe it’s already over! I’ve realized that my picture posting became lazier as the year progressed, but my quality time increased, and capturing each moment in a picture became less important to me. I think that’s a pretty big win in today’s internet obsessed world…we are enjoying life more, screen time less.

Anyhow, this month…literally zero editing, here. I promise I can spell. It’s just 99% of these are written right before I fall asleep at night and, well, priorities. Especially when preggo.

December 1: The ability to let go and allow Kellan to take off his shoes and only wear his new socks that he was super excited about in a restaurant. I mean, he was so happy and it caused zero disruption, so who cares if it isn’t normal?

December 2: Kellan being able to entertain himself with anything and also anywhere we go. Clothes shopping? Let me hide in the clothes. String? I want to tie it around my leg and run around the house. Christmas blocks? Let’s line them up on the floor and scoot across them. His imagination and ability to just play are incredible.

December 3: Surprising Tim at the airport… It’s easy to do, because we have the tiniest, cutest airport that is super close, but we never have. On a spur of the moment decision, Kellan and I went over to meet Tim and the look on Tim’s face as Kellan ran up to him yelling, “Hi daddy!!” as Tim walked out of the security area…oh how I wish I had it on film. Absolutely priceless and worth it. It was so sweet and endearing.

December 4: How compliant Kellan can be….even when he doesn’t want to be….and that’s really incredible that an almost three year old can exhibit that amount of patience/agreeableness.

December 5: Unexpected trip to take photos of a nonprofit for a newspaper story. Witnessing those who give and dedicate so much of themselves – their time, effort, everything – to those in need is truly humbling.

December 6: Not doing what was planned. We had planned on going out to see the Polar Express train car thing in the city, but Kellan said he wanted to stay home. So we adjusted and decked the halls (the Christmas tree) instead. And it was nice.

December 7: Our advent calendar activities haven’t been going “as planned” and I’m not really freaking out about it….we had a really nice weekend, despite not doing anything from the advent calendar. Trying to learn how to let go a little. This is probably a good first step.

December 8: How excited Kellan gets when it is a “clip day” on the advent calendar. AKA take off a Christmas clothespin from the advent pocket and open a wrapped book day. We may not be doing all of the activities planned, but we don’t miss clip days!

December 9: Realizing that I honestly do not care of baby 2 is a girl or boy. Whatever baby bista is exactly what he/she is supposed to be.

December 10: Kellan enjoying the little things, like the reindeer grilled cheese sandwich for lunch by the tree. He even asked to play Christmas music while we had lunch. It was really sweet and cute.

December 11: Kellan trying to take a shower (with all of his clothes on). Big step for him to be willing to get in the shower AND ask for the water to be turned on.

December 12: Tim powering through to go do Christmas stuff even though he didn’t feel well….Kellan working really hard to do a somersault until he did one all by himself. He used to just give up on stuff like that (gross motor). It was a super exciting moment and Tim and I cheered like crazy for him. AND Kellan trying to sound out a word all on his own when we read a story before bed. So many new/amazing things happening today.

December 13: A fun and spontaneous day that included a visit to the Trolley Museum.

December 14: 100% felt baby bista moving/kicking!!

December 15: Tim’s belt spontaneously breaking. So, as I come back downstairs, Tim is like, “Sooooo this random piece of metal fell out of the sky” …..and I have no idea where it came from….guess the house is haunted. Then, about five minutes later, Tim goes, “Welp. I figured it out.” And he lifts up his shirt and shows his broken belt buckle and goes, “No ghost!” Best laugh we have had in a long time.

December 16: Every single day, every minute, is such a gift. And sometimes I need that reminder to live and love those minutes, even the hard ones.

December 17: Safe travel day for Tim

December 18: How candid and conversational Kellan is with people he doesn’t know. If he senses they are “good” people, he will talk with them all day….like he did with two older men today at Panera. When we left, one of them said we had a really neat kid and they enjoyed talking with him.

December 19: Safe travel day for Tim AND he’s home for 15 days!!

December 20: Safe grocery trip an hour away plus having Benadryl when kellan started breaking out in a rash/hives because I failed to wash his PJs before he wore them…his skin and histamine system was none too pleased.

December 21: Kellan not getting upset at all when Lexi ate BOTH of his Christmas cookies he was so proud of….His response when his hard work was gobbled up in 0.5 seconds? Can I have the snowman cookie instead? Tim and I were like, we need to take a page out of his book and learn to just roll with the punches.

December 22: Kellan seeing and taking pictures of Christmas lights at this huge house….and his cooperation in general while we ran random errands all over the place and went to dinner.

December 23: a clean house AND all laundry done before Christmas fun! Haha….that rhymed…

December 24: Being able to get up after Kellan went to bed to help santa!

December 25: A really nice and LONG Christmas Day. And dinner was perfection.

December 26: After a multi store quest, we found Blade!!! The ONE gift from santa that was broken and that Kellan had asked for and wanted more than anything and EVERYONE was out of stock. We all feel better now.

December 27: Laughter. Batman cape (Tim saying, “It was just my cape!” After I turned lego batman’s head around to face the right way and then lifted his cape up to realize his head was already the right way, just his cape was backwards). Mangos (Kellan (while eating dried mangos…what are you thinking about? I’m thinking about these mangos.), socks (Tim walked downstairs after his shower and said he lost his socks from the bathroom to downstairs. Hours later I open the dryer and see towels and a pair of socks inside. I ask Tim why there are socks in there and then I realize and start laughing right as he goes, “found ’em!”)

December 28: THE SUN! BLUE SKY! It’s been WEEKS since we have had a nice day. WEEKS! We went to the nature center. How could we not be outside?!

December 29: Steak and spinach. I’m low on iron, apparently. Because I NEVER like steak.

December 30: A morning in the woods behind the house with the family. It is so rejuvenating. And it was perfectly cool and crisp.

December 31: Finishing another 365 project! First, sunrises. Now, thankfulness.

If you want to relive all of 2014 via thankfulness, here you go….

January
February
March
April
May
June
July
August
September
October
November

I am thankful – September edition

And we are just plugging along, here…..the most adorable thing happened on the last day of the month, by the way. Also, I didn’t have time to grammar and spell/autocorrect check, so I apologize for the errors that probably exist.

September 1: Hanging a million pictures. I mean, I may have to have a whole week of being thankful once the very last picture is up. This is a process, let me tell you.

September 2: being Kellan’s mom. He’s such a joy and light in my life. Also….randomly coming across an explanation of the “peace that passes understanding” and finally actually comprehending what it means. We used to sing a song in church as a kid with that phrase in it and I never really thought about it, I guess….but tonight! It came to me at the perfect moment. And I get it. And it makes me feel so much calmer inside. Less bothered…not at all bothered, really…by external things and people who can easily get under my skin.

September 3: Finding another dentist for Kellan that we like much better/are more comfortable with.

September 4: We survived the allergist appointment. And by survived I mean did really, really well. AND had a negative skin test to peanut butter! Phase 1 of 3 for no peanut allergy passed!

September 5: Officially a freelance writer for our local newspaper!!

September 6: After having an over the top, ridiculous argument about nothing important, after maybe 39 minutes, I went up to Tim and said, “We have been married way too long for this to be an issue.” And laughed and gave him a hug. We both apologized and it was over and done. A few years ago, we would have sulked all weekend. That’s definitely growth of some kind, I think, and thankful to be able to just see it for what it was, apologize, and move on. Married 7 years on Monday!

September 7: Spending enough money by SEVENTEEN DOLLARS to get our credit card reward thing we signed up for six months ago. We had to spend X amount of money every month for six months, and August was the last month and we barely made it over the threshold. It would have really ruined our day had we missed the requirement spending amount on the last month! It seems really silly to be thankful for money…but I mean, half a year of watching the credit card to get a reward at the end and missing it by thismuch would have been really upsetting. Let’s be honest.

September 8: Surviving a really not pleasant dentist experience with Kellan. I’m scarred for life, I think, but we made it and I kept it together for him versus totally losing it in tears. Also, making it to seven years of marriage with my BFF!

September 9: I stepped on the couch while the “pokies” (aka car deterrents) were still on and Tim was like, “Ouch! Stepping on the pokies?” And I was all, “I’m fine.” Then? Kellan starts trying to take them all off, saying “No! Don’t step on the pokies, mommy!” It was really sweet. I think this was the first time he has been outwardly and obviously protective of me/my feelings/well being. Melted me.

September 10: me recognizing my attitude and apologizing for it….and then, again, hearing myself say something in a mean way and in the middle of my words saying sorry and trying again.

September 11: Kellan went into the yard and picked a tiny flower and ran over to me with a huge smile and said, “this is for you, mommy!” This was the first time that I can recall him doing this without prompting by anyone. It was heart melting. He also has been really willing to help clean up his messes or just help when I ask, which is really mind blowing to me, because for a long time, it’s like he was all about RESISTANCE! Oh, and his blood test for peanuts came back negative! Yay!

September 12: Total random act of kindness when the guy at the John Deere store checkout gave Kellan a hat. Completely unexpected and so sweet. If I take nothing else from our Arkansas experience, it will be how genuinely nice everyone has been.

September 13: COOL FALL-LIKE WEATHER AND A TRIP TO AN OUTDOOR ACTIVITY!!!!!! (Nature center). can you tell I’m over summer?

September 14: When clearing out a REALLY old woodpile in the yard from who knows how long ago, Kellan asked Tim why he was taking the dirt/leaves/etc left after all the wood pieces were gone and Tim goes, “Always do your best work whenever you do a job.” I mean, we all know that cutting corners is way easier in the moment, but it always comes back to bite you in the butt. Tim, however, does it right the first go, 99.9% of the time, even if it takes a million times longer. *However* it never comes up as an issue again. And even though the taking a million times longer sometimes makes me crazy, I’m very thankful he puts in the extra effort and is such a good example to Kellan – and me – as to why you don’t half ass your way through anything.

September 15: Tim coming downstairs after taking a shower in non-work clothes. It’s rare he’s even home at a reasonable hour these days during the week.

September 16: this video: http://www.iflscience.com/brain/5-ways-social-media-changing-your-brain#

It actually really bothers me that I am so…dependent?…on “the internet” when I know I can survive just fine without it. At least the social media aspect. I have been wanting to trim down my social media accounts and really change my habits when it comes to checking email/twitter/Instagram/Facebook/etc. It isn’t healthy and it is not a good example for Kellan. I think this video may have been the straw to break the proverbial camel’s back. Facebook will be the first to go. My plan is to just have this blog, and maybe Instagram, nothing more. Well, twitter, too, but mostly just for weather information, since I seem to be able to find out what is going on faster there than anywhere else….SIGH. It’s a slippery slope, isn’t it? Wish me luck.

September 17: the chance to write a story that will be on the front page of the newspaper AND getting set up to visit the fair before it is open to the public for a different story about an exotic animal petting zoo…and Kellan gets to come! Think camels and zebras and emus!

September 18: Nice post-dinner outside time. The weather was perfect and Kellan has a blast. This is night two in a row where we went outside after dinner and it was so relaxing and fun.

September 19: Kellan surviving his first carnival ride. Actually, all of us surviving, because it was not at all what any of us expected. Poor Kellan. He was being so brave…and then the Lightning McQueen car whipped around the curve and his head almost didn’t make it around with his body. Suffice it to say, we got the guy to stop the ride ASAP and got him off. First time we put Kellan in a situation and he thought it would be ok and it wasn’t. Learning and growing experience for all of us. Thankful Kellan survived without any real injuries and we all survived this parenting first.

September 20: Kellan going to bed/falling asleep without much of a fuss after I told him I needed sleep because I wasn’t feeling well. He is really starting to develop empathy, and it is really amazing to watch.

September 21: we went outside for a little but in the evening and I had on a pair of nap socks (super fuzzy socks) over a pair of regular below-ankle type socks (my feet are always cold inside. I blame the wood and tile floors). I took the fuzzy socks off while sitting on the driveway and Kellan picked them up and threw them into the bushes. I asked him to go pick them up and he instead ran the other direction down the driveway (hello, testing toddler). At that same point, Tim had to go inside for something and he took the socks with him. I told Kellan that that was really nice and he should say thank you when Tim/daddy came back out. I had kind of forgotten I had said that until a few minutes later. Tim walked back outside and the first thing out of Kellan’s mouth? “Thank you for bringing the socks inside for me, daddy.” WOW. He does listen. And wow. Just…every day he amazes me in ways I never expect.

September 22: I’ve probably said this already, at some point, but I REALLY LOVE our neighborhood. It’s so unique. It’s not color cutter. It has an amazing feel. I can’t even describe it. It feels like it has been loved for a very long time and gives that love back to you as you’re walking down the street, admiring everyone’s house and yard and unique touches they added to make their house a home. I love it so much. This is how I want to feel in our forever home, wherever that will be.

September 23: Another day. Life is so
precious. I am so grateful to live it.

September 24: recognizing that I really just do not handle stress well. At all. Isn’t this the first step?

September 25: Randomly happening upon this quote: “The things you take for granted someone else is praying for.” No idea who said this, but a really good reminder, because it’s the absolute truth.

September 26: Seeing the relationship blossoming and growing between Tim and Kellan. It is less “mommy all the time” and more “mommy, leave.” Harsh but also good.

September 27: Peace of mind. Also known as an underground tornado shelter.

September 28: While Tim and I were making dinner, Kellan was playing in his little play area off the kitchen. He had gotten out this farm set with a barn and animals, etc. A few minutes later, I looked over to check on him and he was finishing putting it all away in its bin, all on his own. I was so proud. I went over and told him how proud I was and how that was such a big boy thing to do and gave him a big hug. I don’t know what prompted him to do this, because he leaves messes a lot, but this moment did show me that he is learning and trying really hard. Makes my heart smile.

September 29: how well Kellan can – and will – entertain himself. Sometimes I feel like I should be right there, too, playing with him, but I try to keep my distance and only join when asked. It’s incredible how he has developed this wonderful imagination, seemingly all on his own.

September 30: experiencing the most adorable grocery shopping trip of my life. When Kellan and I got to the grocery store, he went over to the little carts for kids and started pulling them out. I asked if he wanted one and he said yes. He’s gone over before but has always said no. He pushed that little cart through the whole store, filling it up with everything he wanted….and he was so proud of himself. It was something I hope I never, ever forget. If you’re curious, his cart had pomegranates, lemons, pears, apples, carrots, broccoli, parsnips, asparagus, tomatoes, grapes, cheese, yogurt, and then some boxed stuff (brown sugar and powdered sugar, Graham bunnies, etc).

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I am thankful – August edition

Wow. It’s been a month, that’s for sure. Life is very….different? This was Kellan and my first full month in Arkansas. It’s ready hot, you guys. REALLY FREAKING HOT. I’m not a fan, though I am thankful for our wooded backyard+ mature trees because that equals lots of shade….on the house. Not like a person “throwing shade.” I don’t even know if I totally understand that because shade is actually really nice…and cool…I guess trees throwing shade is just a whole different thing….I digress. Here’s our month. In thankfulness form.

AUGUST THANKFULNESS

THANKFULNESS

August 2: an entire day of zero house/unpacking/fixing stuff. And we found a mellow mushroom…haven’t been there mmmsince we lived in Georgia. Fun re-memory. AND I found two wooden Thomas trains on super clearance. As in both were less than $4.00 IN TOTAL. If you know anything about Thomas trains, you know the wooden ones are anywhere from $15 to $25 or more…EACH. I never find deals like that! I found this one by complete accident. Happiest checkout experience ever.

August 3: THE HALF BATH IS DONE! I mean, I need to put some soap in there but that’s way easy. Yay for the first completed room!

August 4: unexpected Mickey pizza from manager at longhorn because she heard Kellan asking for a pizza for dinner (versus the grilled chicken he had). We were so surprised when our server brought it out. Such a nice thing to do…the manager heard the pizza request in passing and acted on it. Such a rare thing to find and have happen these days it seems. Grateful to have been the recipient.

August 5: [writing this on August 6] because I’m thankful for surviving the day. Holy horrible sickness that morphed into a migraine and resulted in my bowing to the porcelain bowl around 9pm…and *then* barely getting any sleep because my head hurt so badly. The kind of hurt where you try not to think at all because that just makes it hurt worse and you instead try to find something to repeat over and over in your head. Like “cool moss.” Thankful to have survived the day and night because it was brutal.

August 6: Not having the stress of being the sole breadwinner in the family. I use to be really bothered by that – not being *the one* making all the dollars – but now I’m glad I’m not the one with that stress…not to say I never want to make the big cheese, it’s just that today, I’m thankful I’m not the one carrying that burden. I can only imagine how stressful it can be.

August 7: A NEW KITCHEN FAUCET that isn’t broken/has zero water pressure/has never run long enough with its tiny stream to ever get the water hot. It made washing anything really, really gross…having to will the tiny food particles down the drain…tiny wet food particles….ew ew ew. Thank you new faucet and water pressure!

August 8: even though Kellan is at the age/stage where I basically want to pull my hair out sometimes, there are these little moments where it’s just like, wow. Maybe we are actually getting through to him. Tonight, after we came inside after playing in the rain on the back deck (looooove the back deck), I handed him his water while he was sitting at his table reading a book and as I walked away he goes, “thank you, mommy” with zero prompting from anyone. It was so sweet and polite and unexpected. It makes all those other AHHHHHH moments melt away.

August 9: Mimi is here safely!

August 10: Parenting lessons from Mimi. Also known as watch and learn. She makes it look so easy!

August 11: Seeing how much joy Kellan brings to Mimi. It is so sweet to watch them together, laughing and playing. He loves her so much. Whenever they see each other it is like no time has passed, and they just pick up where they left off.

August 12: the most perfect, low humidity, mid-80s with a breeze weather day. Lots of other things happened today that were less pleasant, but the weather was spot on.

August 13: A fun afternoon going to an antique store with my mom! I am new to the antique scene and I LOVE looking for fun finds! She’s way more experienced so she helps me learn how to look for the “real antiques.”

August 14: some days I am reminded just how blessed our family is….how blessed I am. Nothing in particular really happened, it’s just sometimes I get this feeling inside like, “Wow. We really have so much to be thankful for.” Today was that day.

August 15: Kellan asking to sleep with Tim at bedtime. He lasted all of five minutes before saying, “I want to sleep with mommy” but it is a huge sign that he’s getting ready to be comfortable sleeping on his own/without mom all night! Also slightly bittersweet but yay for imdependence.

August 16: We organized the garage… almost. As in a garage sale must happen before we can completely finish, but still. It looks way better than it did, and we all know how much we love (read: extremely dislike) an unorganized mess.

August 17: getting more of the house out together. I think today is the first day since we moved in that the hallway area between the kitchen/dining room/pantry is 100% clear. Oh, also thankful for my ability to see I was having a bad attitude morning and Tim gave me a huge bear hug and said he was sorry I didn’t get any sleep (which is true). Self awareness on both parts made me try to constantly check myself before I wrecked myself all morning until the little black rain cloud following me finally dissipated.

August 18: I have been having trouble finding the humor in minor “disaster” things that happened recently. Today, the watermelon I bought wasn’t secured properly in the back of my car and rolled all over the place on the way home. After we pulled into the garage, I opened the back door (Highlander) and got Kellan out of his car seat. I started walking inside and I hear a loud thump and I was like, “Kellan! Did you drop the watermelon on the floor?!” (Concrete garage floor) and in a very proud of himself voice he was like, “Yessss!” And the first words out of my mouth were, “It’s ruined!” (I dropped a watermelon out of the back of my car the other week and totally destroyed (bruised) the inside). Then, as I start walking back outside all I can hear is Kellan yelling in a panicked voice, “It’s rolling away! Oh no! It’s rolling away!!!!!” In a split second, I knew. I knew exactly what had happened. And I started laughing hysterically. Kellan’s watermelon had made it to our downward sloping driveway and rolled allllllllll the way down and across the street. When I asked, through my laughs, where it went, Kellan points and goes, “Over there! In the road!” And sure enough, there was our watermelon, resting in the gutter. I’m thankful today to be able to see the humor instead of getting upset about a probably ruined watermelon.

August 19: honestly. I forgot to write something before going to bed last night and now it is the next day and I can’t remember anything….because 1. mom brain and 2. we had to get up super early to go to the DMV. Or as Kellan said while crying this morning because wakeup time was WAY earlier than normal, “I don’t want to go to the DMV and U and W.” I hear ya, kid. Me either. Anyway……totally drawing a blank….I’m thankful for?…..Tim finally getting a diagnosis on his ankle (tendinitis….and now he’s having to wear a walking boot for a month and take massive steroids to help with swelling)? Maybe that, yes. So he can get it healed and then get on with our exercising together selves. Because that is way more fun, in my opinion.

August 20: Getting to the ER in time after Kellan had an allergic reaction to peanuts, we think. Glad I listened to my mommy radar after he started breaking out in giant hives all over his body.

August 21: thankful to have had the FOURTH doctor I called get Kellan in for an appointment and subsequent referral to an allergist today versus weeks from now or not accepting new patients now. Hopefully we will know something soon…even though soon is like two weeks from now….

August 22: Not that I was driving super fast, but thankful the cop I passed “checking” speeds seemed mine non-ticketable and stayed in his hiding spot (how is that even fair, anyway?)

August 23: Struggling with coming up with a thankful moment of the day these past few days….today we put up pictures and Kellan didn’t nap but oh! He asked to vacuum! He walked right over to it and said he wanted to vacuum! So, that was new….and this morning at breakfast, we were cracking up because Kellan kept asking Tim to do the “voice of Batman/Superman/Aquaman.” Batman was deep. Superman was a radio personality voice. Aquaman was Kermit the frog voice. It was hysterical. Thankful for those laughs.

August 24: Getting stuff done. As in hanging about a million pictures. Yay for less clutter and pretty walls!

August 25: random act of kindness from a lady in the floral department at our local grocery store. Kellan ran over to look at the balloons while I was finishing checking out (read: had to chase after him). He was behind the counter when I got there and I was like AHHHH! We don’t work here! Then I saw the lady and she was like, “I was going to blow these up for him if that’s ok?” I was so surprised. It was such a sweet thing to do! Usually we get the evil eye if Kellan runs off and does something like that, like why are you not controlling your child?! She, instead, says, “He’s just too cute!” Zero irritation or eye rolling at Kellan just being a kid. That is one amazing thing that we are learning about Arkansas. Everyone is so child friendly/patient/gracious. It’s really hard to find places like that these days, but we found it here.

August 26: Random venting session with the BFF. I think we both feel better, now.

August 27: THE ONLY NATURAL FOOD STORE IN THIS TOWN HAD BREAD. Kellan all time favorite, toast with jam, can be consumed again.

August 28: at the grocery store today, I saw a mom, dad, and little boy no older than two, in the produce section. The kid had one of those tiny shopping carts and the had knelt down with a bunch of bananas and was calmly and very nicely telling/explaining to him to put them into the tiny cart gently. The kid was trying but I mean, the bananas were almost as big as he was, so I’m guessing the task was a little difficult for his little hands. Anyway, the mom was standing above them both, arms crossed, looking pretty annoyed. Finally, she said, “gentle hands” and rolled her eyes because obviously dad was using the incorrect words to get his point across. The dad immediately started saying “gentle hands” and at that point, I walked by them so I don’t know how the story ended. I am guessing more passive aggressive lecturing from the mom. That whole five seconds scene really made an impression on me, though. The dad was really, really trying to do/say the right thing and the mom was just standing over them like, “You are such an idiot. You have no idea what you’re doing.” And maybe he didn’t, but from an outsiders perspective, he was doing everything right and was making a big effort and that effort was basically sh*t on when the mom stepped in all, “GENTLE HANDS.” I think maybe the randomness of me seeing this tonight was a moment for me to step back and be thankful that Tim has a dad like that, who really does try to do the right things, even if he doesn’t know the “usual” or the “term/phrase” that Kellan is used to hearing to complete a request. I need to be a silent observer instead of stepping in and sh*tting on their activity by basically saying Tim is doing it wrong, whatever it may be. It’s actually pretty heartbreaking to witness, as I did today. All that effort by dad is basically undermined when mom steps in in that manner. So, I’m thankful to have witnessed the hurt and harm in my own actions, though not done by me. I guess sometimes you have to see it that way to really understand how you look to a stranger.

August 29: Safe travel home day for Tim!

August 30: The most gorgeous sunset! I love nature.

August 31: Kellan’s sense of humor. He knows he’s making a joke and cracks himself up, which makes everyone laugh.


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