Thursday, May 19, 2016

Fletch 2.5 | Milo 8 Months

Sheesh time is flying.  
Brothers, you're going to have to share the spotlight here as I try to play catch up with my life-chronicling obsession.

Fletcher | 2.5
You are so sweet and SO mischievous!  A totally unique personality from your bros.  We've had to reassess the way we parent because you learn/respond/operate in your own individual way.  Luckily God gave you dimples to get you out of the trouble you find yourself in daily.  They definitely help soften the blow when I discover you on the couch...with a Sharpie (that I'm convinced you stashed somewhere for the sole purpose of assaulting the furniture when I wasn't looking).  You just smile innocently.  Too cute for your own good, no doubt.  On the flip side of your adorably, frustratingly naughty behavior - you are so so cuddly and affectionate.  As much as you give us a run for our money, I sincerely love your wild personality.  Testing boundaries and trying to get a reaction is the name of your game.  And I'll spend the next 15+ years of my life trying to stay one step ahead of you.
You can:
- count to 15 (although 13,14 and 15 are always in the wrong order)
- say your ABCs
- buckle your own carseat
all of this is credit to having older siblings, I'm sure.
Fletcher's "Happy Half" at Foo's Fabulous.

Milo | 8 months
You unabashedly live up to your two nicknames: Smil-o and Moose.  You're determined to be the fattest, happiest baby around :)



Lately, you've started giggling to yourself in the backseat while I'm driving.  Even when your brothers are at school and there's no one in the car except us.  Big baby belly laughs.  I have no idea what's so funny but I can't help but laugh too.  So ridiculous.

Something I respect about you - the dedication you have to your meals.  You won't give up on that last slimy chunk of banana on your tray no matter how much it tries to escape. Your faithfulness, your grit.  It's both an exhausting and fascinating scene to watch.  But if this banana-tenacity translates into going after what you want in life, you'll be very successful.

I also enjoy the way you "talk" and interject your babbles and squeals into the well-established chaos that is "family dinner".  You're not shy about speaking up.  And your brothers, who think you're the best thing on earth, will actually stop talking over one another to reply, "Oh?!  Then what happened, Milo?"  And you smile so huge back at them.  Just happy to be heard and included.

My dear boys,

Having four kids is madness.  The best kind of madness. Overwhelming and lovely at the same time.  It's honestly much harder than you might expect but also a million times better ;)  And we are living every moment.

My whole heart,

Tuesday, May 3, 2016

We loved here.

Our home.  A safe haven for our family.

We first arrived on it's doorstep with one toddler in tow and have since carried three more babes across the threshold to call this place home.  In these past five years we've lived every inch of it.

It's where our love has taken root.  We've celebrated life and victories, and we've poured out grief and acknowledged defeats, all with these sturdy walls surrounding us.   Our cozy home on the edge of Brookside, surrounded by community and crooked sidewalks, we have loved here.

The kisses I've given at the bottom of the stairs, the stories I've read under the heavy covers of our bed, the closets we've huddled in during hide-and-seek, our sidewalk covered with chalk many times over.  The parties we've thrown.  Little ones learning to walk and then learning to ride a bike without training wheels.  This house has been the backdrop for all of these memories.  These are things that breathe life into a home.

I've always felt that houses have "personalities".  Ours is jolly and welcoming and forgiving of the stress we impart on it daily.  Our house seems to say, "what's one more!?" with regard to children and guests, and "I don't mind the noise...or the crayon on my walls."  A comfortable and easy going presence that wraps its arms around us no matter what the day brings.

One of the {many} reasons I love old houses is the simple thought of "if these walls could talk".  How many babies were soothed, how many owies were kissed, how many tickles and cuddles and pep talks were given within these walls - by me and others -  in it's long life.   Not every day is a happy day.  Some days there are feelings of frustration that dampen the feelings of love.  Miscommunication and tears.  So many stories and we are only 5 years - a mere flash - of it's nearly 100 year history.

I knew the moment that we walked into this house that it was ours.  I could feel the love that had been absorbed in its walls after a century of existence.  It felt right.  Perfectly right for us.

One of my happiest memories is when Billy and I were sitting in our "new" bedroom, surrounded by boxes and eating Chinese food to satisfy my cravings (I was 6 months pregnant with Sully).  We had no cable or assembled furniture, but I just remember telling Billy, "I am so, so happy right now."   We were home.

Our house is old.  Our house is wise.  It has been loved well.  And it loves us well in return.

We'll continue adding to it's legacy.

I dug deep into the vault of grainy iPhone pics for some of these :)

 It's crazy thinking back to how stressed and desperate I was when I wrote this post.  It seems like a million years ago now...