Saturday, January 31, 2015

You're FOUR!!!

Holy Moly!  How is it that you are FOUR?!  I know parents across the world will agree with me when I say, "Can time just slow down?!  Please?!!!"  I look forward to watching you grow up but does it have to be so fast?!  I realized the other day just how quickly time goes (well, really I've been realizing it since you were born...but I digress).  I realized what you call me and more times than not these days, you are calling me "Mom."  On occasion you still call me Mommy or Mama, but it's become "Mom" most of the time and it really hit me that you're moving from babyhood, to toddlerhood, to now, childhood.  You're growing up much faster than I ever could have imagined.

In an attempt to get a snapshot of you to "stop time," I found a website that posted a Birthday Questionnaire and thought, "How perfect!"  (Here is a link to the questionnaire I used.)  So for your fourth birthday, here are a few items that make you YOU!  (smile - names and personal mentions have been removed)

It was cute doing this with you and I hope to continue doing it with you each year.  You are such a silly girl and at first, you were giving us silly answers.  Once we played and you figured out how to answer the questions, we had a lot of fun telling stories for each answer.  For instance, you do LOVE the songs from Frozen but you LOVE hearing "Shake It Off" come on the radio and dance as much as possible in your car seat.  It's so adorable!!!  (You say, "Mom!  That's my favorite song!")  You love to hear stories about yourself, and made up ones too!  Just recently you've been asking about me being pregnant with you and your birth story.  You also love it (and ask for it often) when we make up stories, most of the time with a princess of the same name as the lead character.  Your imagination is really developing and it's so wonderful to hear your beautifully artistic imaginary side!

But I think my favorite answer is where you want to go on vacation.  "L---s house."  One, it tells me you don't quite get what the question means and that's ok. Two, and maybe more importantly, it shows us how the simplest of things make you happy, and really, isn't that part of what life should be about?  You are content with what you have, what we do, and are truly happy about the littlest of things.  (smile)

Here are some highs (and lows) of who you are, a snapshot of what it's like being you at 3/4:

  • You LOVE to play dress-up
  • You LOVE to sing and dance (asking us to turn on the Ree-deee-ooo with long drawn out vowels)
  • You are a lover of all things Chocolate - you and Princess Anna do the line in the movie perfectly
  • You LOVE to color and are getting really good at drawing things to the point I don't have to guess what it is, I know!
  • You LOVE to read books and have started trying to read them yourself!  You read (memorize) Brave - A Mother's Love every day!  What a great way to start learning!
  • You LOVE school
  • You LOVE adventures - any little thing is an adventure to you and I love it (although we did stop calling them adventures for a while since each time we called it that something not so fun happened but they were still adventures and we found ways to laugh and have fun)
  • You LOVE all things princess (as seen above, you'd love to be one!)
  • You LOVE food - there really aren't many foods you don't like and you love to try what everyone is eating but we're still working on you telling us when you are hungry (sometimes you get a little ornery when your energy sources have been depleted he he)
  • You LOVE to play in your kitchen and make me different meals throughout the day
  • You LOVE to assist me in the kitchen, grabbing your step-stool and helping me cook
  • You are VERY expressive, in speech and actions.  Not gonna lie when I say I love hearing all your thoughts.  You are constantly saying, "That's my favorite (fill in the blank)!" or "You're the best Mom in the whole world!" or "I love you soooo much!"  Warms my heart.
  • With all that excitement, there are lows that can get pretty low and we talk constantly about our feelings to try and work out those lows.  You tend to cross your arms and put a very deep scowl on your face.  It's still a work in progress.  (wink - Daddy even called it being "a card carrying member of exaggerators anonymous for four year olds" he he)
Honey, I love you with all my heart.  We have our good days and our not so good days but we are working on it together, constantly improving our relationship and our relationship with others.  I so much look forward to helping you grow into a strong, confident woman.  I found this picture the other day and it speaks volumes as to what we mothers must remind ourselves when raising our children and I'm trying desperately to "own my role as mother:"

(Image source:

I hope and pray you can see just how important you are to me, your mother.  I love you always and "Happy birthday my dear four year old!"


Thursday, January 8, 2015

A letter to the future me...

As I sit here typing, I am listening to the sounds of "Beauty and the Beast" coming from the karaoke machine and you building with your Duplos, sounds that have come to tell me you're happy.  I love to just listen.  Listen.  It tells me so much about you and so much about life.

Over the holidays, we spent a lot of time just being a little family of three.  Spent time with family and friends alike, got some of the long outstanding chores done, and overall just had a very relaxing time.   During that time, I did quite a bit of reflecting.  I listened to my heart and my head and really just tried to figure out what I'm doing.  One of those ponderings brought me to thoughts of when I am a Grandmother someday (hopefully).  Here are some ramblings of what I might want to say to my future self, a list of do's and don'ts if you will.  Ah hem...

Play.  Play a LOT with the grandkids.  Get on the floor, who cares if your knees are gone, your belly comes out to them, and you cannot get up.  There will be help to get off the floor.  And lots of laughter to see the spectacle of you trying to get up.  (smile)  Play lots of games, board games, card games, hide and seek, anything that the kids enjoy.  Take them to the zoo, to the park, go with them to parties, meet their friends.  The laughter and joy the kids have is the greatest thing to hear and see.  (smile)

Listen.  Listen to the laughter, the tears, the crazy zany sayings said with such exuberance you cannot stop but laugh and smile yourself.  (Unless you're Scrooge - wink)  Talk with them to figure out all the little nuances of their brains, help them to understand in a childlike way, get on to their level.  Smile, laugh, cry along with them. 

Be there.  You may not always like some of the parenting styles, no two children are ever really raised the same, even within families.  But be there.  Be present.  If you're working, take time off to spend with family.  Spend time with just the kids, just you and the kids.  Work will always be there, kids will grow up.  Be with them at every stage.

Hugs and kisses.  Give LOTS of hugs and kisses.  And when they don't want them, be the silliest person you can imagine, they'll come around.  Don't take it personally when there are times (and there will be times) when they don't want to come to you.  As stated before, get on there level, and just be silly old Grandma.

Create memories and stories from those memories.  Laugh about them, tell them often, include them in on the stories.  They may not get it now, but someday, they will.  I still laugh when I think about the times my Grandmother would pick me up from school for either a basketball practice, or choir, or any such after school activity, and we'd chat in the car ride, talking about the day, funny stories, anything.  I really could tell her anything.  Be THAT person.  (Maybe one day I'll tell you about getting pulled over by a cop, with my Grandmother as the passenger.  Yup, that really happened.  She never told a soul.  (smile))

So many things can be said, and I'm sure I'll want to add more as I get older.  Hopefully I'll even remember to write them down.  (wink, wink)  With all that is said above, just remember to be present.  Family comes first.  Someday I hope I get a chance to tell just how much you truly mean to me.  How much you have changed my life, my thoughts, all for the best.  I hope to be able to spend time with you as you hold your little ones, being there, being THAT Grandma.

I love you baby,