Being Thankful

Traveling, eating, eating even more, traveling again, eating again, more traveling and more eating pretty much sums up our Thanksgiving. Between the car rides and yummy food, I did make sure to remember what is most important during this time…and for me, that’s family. With life so busy at times, it’s easy to take for granted how blessed I am. I do try so hard to live in the moment, cherish each day and the wonders that it holds, and to always be grateful for having such an amazing family. On a day that is focused on giving thanks, I found it utterly impossible to find the words to explain how truly grateful I am. I am so thankful for all of my extended family; sister-in-laws, nieces & nephews, my brother-in-law, all of my wonderful friends and my dear sweet Hailey who have all made such a positive impact on me. I know without each of these people in my life, I wouldn’t be the person I am today. However, extra gratitude goes to my mom and dad who have always supported me and allowed me to make my own mistakes and grow. After becoming a parent, I realized even more all of the sacrifices they made for me. I had such an amazing childhood and know that my marriage is so strong partly because of the example that they provided me. I am grateful for my wonderful brothers who watched over me when I was younger and always allowed their little sister to tag along. Now that we are all grown with our own families, it makes me smile to think back at those times and cherish the friendships that we have now as adults. I am also blessed with wonderful in-laws. Ryan’s parents are not only responsible for raising the amazing man who I love more and more every day, but they have also accepted and welcomed me into their family…craziness and all. I understand as a mother that no one is quite good enough for your baby, but I have never felt that way with them. For all of these amazing people, I am truly grateful. But, there are absolutely no words of gratitude that can accurately express how I feel towards Ryan. He is just the most incredible husband; the kindest, most loving and caring person I know. He has filled my life with more joy than I could have ever imagined. He is my best friend. And together we have been touched by an angel. Through Lauren, we are witnessing more beauty and love than either of us have ever known. The word BLISS is the only thing that comes to mind right now.  I am so thankful.

To see some pictures from our extended Thanksgiving weekend, click here.


Techno Kid

I’m sure it happens with each generation.  Just as my parents told stories of a time in the world when they were kids that was very different than mine, I will do the same.  Here is just one example:

Part of our conversation on the way to school this morning:

LP:  “Mommy, how does Daddy know where to go?”
Me:  “What do you mean?”
LP:  “How does he know where to go without a map.”  (referring to the navigation system in the car)
Me:  “Oh, well if he hasn’t already been there once before, he can get directions from someone or maybe even look on the computer before he leaves.”
LP:  “Or he can use the map on his phone.”
Me:  “Yeah, he could do that, too!”
LP:  “Mom, your phone doesn’t have a map, does it?”
Me:  “No, it doesn’t.”
LP:  “Sorry, Babe.”

I’m amazed that my child believes that a map is some type of digital image…and laugh each time I think about how she called me Babe.


Blessings

As I continue to worry about the level of maturity Lauren shows compared to the other kids in her class, I am taken back at the idea that if LP had been born only 15 days earlier, she’d be starting Pre-K next year!! That sounds frightening and unimaginable to me! And while I am concerned that she might bore of the lessons that she’s currently being taught, I am so grateful for another year of Lauren being at home with me. I want to embrace every lazy morning with just the two of us playing non-stop, every casual lunch filled with laughter and singing and sharing, every afternoon walk, day at the park, visit to the zoo, and all of the other wonderful little moments that we share as mother and daughter that will become a little less frequent when she does start school. Our time together is such a blessing. 38 months ago we welcomed Lauren into our lives. It’s been filled with amazing accomplishments, hard lessons learned, laughter, tears, dance, time-outs, irreplaceable moments and unforgettable joys.

This past month we’ve had the wonderful opportunity to continue to relish in all of LP’s laurenness (my word describing Lauren’s personality). She still loves to make people laugh (always making funny faces or dancing around silly) and hates to be wrong (constantly coming up with excuses to make what she said or did right…so have to work on her understanding that it’s okay to be wrong). She talks so mature, using words like “slither” and “organize“. I was taken back when she said to me, “I was able to convince Daddy to play” and when I overheard her say, “Daddy, did you expect that?” Her imagination is unbelievable. I jotted down some of the highlights of a story she recently told Ryan and me while getting her ready for bed. It went something like this:
There was a Mommy jellyfish with her baby jellyfish. They had a dog who pretended to be a polar bear and swam all around the house. They also had a pet snake – who was nice and didn’t bite – that painted whiskers on himself and pretended to be a seal. The baby jellyfish would spend the day swimming around in her mommy’s mouth when they weren’t jogging around the house.

It’s amazing how someone so young has the knack to say just the right thing at just the right time. The other morning as I tried to rush Lauren towards to door in order to get her to school on time, she said, “Mom, you kind of pushed me. Say you’re sorry.” That was exactly what I needed to hear. It put a smile on my face and served as an important reminder to slow down and enjoy this moment in our lives. I hope you enjoy some pictures from this month’s photo shoot, click here.

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Ladybug Girl!

She can dash from house to house, quickly identifying which one is ready for trick or treaters, she enthusiastically greets anyone on thep1080562-3-large.JPG other side of an open door with an extremely loud “trick or treat” followed by a gracious and just as exuberant “thank you”, she has the ability to wander the neighborhood holding a heavy ladybug bag with just one hand, and she scurries to the door in a single bound to eagerly pass out handful after handful of delicious treats to fellow bugs, ghosts, ghouls, fairies, and princesses.

This Halloween was more fun than any of us could have imagined. Lauren was so excited about getting dressed up and was quite impatient as it seemed like dusk would never come. And she was definitely on some kind of high throughout the evening…whether it was the exhilaration from the activities of the evening, the 4 pieces of candy she got to eat from her bag, or both we will never know. However, Halloween made a lasting impression on LP. Her candy is mangled from us recreating the thrill of that night over and over again as we play “Trick or Treat” in all the rooms upstairs.

Click here to check out some pictures of Ladybug Girl in action as well as some with her reluctant sidekick, Ladybug Dog.