Today I'm linking up with LeeAnn and participating in her new meme. The point is to highlight something good in your day, week, life, in order to get the positive energy flowing and just to make the world a little bit brighter. So often we read stories of tragedies, the evening news capitalizes on our fears, and when you add it all up, the amount of negative and disturbing information that we process on a daily basis is cause for all of us to become afflicted with anxiety disorders and panic attacks.
My MIL (God rest her soul) used to always say, "Carol! Stop putting that negating Sh!t out there. Positive thoughts bring positive results." I think she was right. So, here we go...Imma about to tell you somethings that are good!
This morning, I was witness to the cutest thing ever:
The clock reads 7:30 am, it's time to load up the truck to leave for school. As I'm pouring my cup of coffee for the road I hastily shout to the girls that it is time to brush teeth because we need to leave. They both scamper off to the bathroom. I follow to "load" their toothbrushes (it's a lot less messy when momma does it) and then ask them to brush. Chloe quickly follows this with a "no." I shake my head. "Can Momma please help you brush?" "no." I leave the bathroom. I'm trying to figure out if I really want to fight this battle this morning. I stir the creamer in my coffee, and as I walk back down the hallway to the bathroom I hear a 5 year old voice say, "Chloe show me your cheese face. No, Chloe. Like this. Do this." I walk in and find Camdyn diligently brushing Chloe's teeth. She hit every angle, she brushed every tooth and Chloe stood there patiently while Sissy brushed her teeth.
In other news that makes me happy. I'm really looking forward to our trip to Busch Gardens with LeeAnn and her family this Saturday. It's been on my calender for months and I'm excited that we are finally connecting again. And, this Momma is having a Girl's Night Out on Saturday night too with the O Squad. The two girls that I've known the longest here, the girls that have been there through thick and thin. The girls that have their place in this post about how important every friendship is. I'm sure a night will be had.
So, that's the sunshine in my life right now. I hope you take a minute to Thank God for all of your blessings and embrace Something that is Good.
Thanks, LeeAnn for this link up....I already feel like my day is off to a better start :)
When I was little we always spent Easter down on the Farm. We would spend the afternoon with all of our cousins and relatives. We would play basketball in the hayloft and push each other on the tire swing. We would indulge in a huge pot luck style early dinner and then it would be nap time. The kids would all tromp up the old wooden staircase and rush to lay down on old creaky box spring beds and nap so the Bunny would hop by and leave us treasures outside. Easter was not only about celebrating the fact that He Has Risen, but it was also about family...faith and family.
I think for that reason, I always get a little homesick on this holiday (of course, the fact that SHE just left makes the holiday hard too). I miss my family. I mourn the fact that my children won't grow up with similar memories. They didn't spend Easter surrounded by extended family, or even friends that might as well be family. We spent the holiday alone...a family of four, which should be plenty. I should be reveling in the fact that we are creating our own little traditions instead of lamenting on Easters past, egg hunts that we no longer participate in and family style dinner invitations that don't come our way. I should be happy that my kids are healthy, and we are having quality family time, but somehow there is a touch of sadness in what we miss while living so far away from family.
So, we made the best out of it, despite the fact that our A/C unit on our 1st floor stopped working mid-day on Saturday, despite the fact that it was 83 degrees and HUMID in our house all day long, despite the fact that it rained, and that Publix closed before I got French Bread to complete the meal that Stouffer's made for me. My children didn't know the difference and they enjoyed themselves.
Thursday night, we dyed eggs with Daddy.
See that tooth on the bottom right. Its days are numbered.
I love this photo. The egg somehow ended up in perfect focus. This was Chloe's first egg dying adventure. She caught on quickly.
As the sun set, we left our eggs to dry and took a dip in the pool before bedtime.
Church was a highlight of our Easter morning. The girls looked so cute in the coordinating dresses. Hubs tried his best to get everyone to look at him for the photo. I had 10 pictures to choose from, everyone took turns looking odd, I chose to the post the one that I looked the least odd in. :)
After nap time it was time for our egg hunt. We did it indoors this year. It turns out that the bunny brought a lot of chocolate and well, that would just be messy outside.
Chloe finds an egg hidden under Elmo's arm.
Oh the expression! Cam found an egg hidden in the chair. Is it just me, or does she look about 8 years old in this photo? She also slept over at a friend's house on Friday night. She never cried, she never asked to come home, and she can't wait to do it again. It's like she grew up overnight.
My whole world and some baskets.
Oh dear, this is her "cheese" face.
The bunny brought her bubbles and she was over the moon about them.
And here she is wishing that the A/C was working. I feel ya, Chloe.
After exchanging a string of emails with a friend this morning about our holiday and the way we like to spend it. I've decided that next year I will make a more concentrated effort to celebrate Easter the way that makes me happiest, to continue creating our own traditions, and that it's okay for my children's memories to differ from my own.
I hope you had a wonderful Easter.
He has Risen Indeed.
This song takes me back to my childhood. My father used to sing it to me as often as I'd request it. I have no idea how my father knew the lyrics to this Christmas song about a little girl who longed for a doll. But he knew them, and he sang them, and if I was able to sing without my children saying "MOMMA! stop singing!" then I'd be singing it to my girls too.
Wonderful memories, Daddy, of a childhood well spent.
Every now and then someone will ask me to take some pictures for them, and I jump at the chance. It means I get to spend a solid hour doing something I like to do. I get to practice my hobby and each and every time I learn something. It's the best way for me to grow and it gives my girls a break from the camera.
Such was the case last Sunday evening when I met V and her boys down at the Marina for a mock photo session.
The weather was perfect and the smiles were everywhere.
And, this just might be my favorite photo from the evening. Pure joy, real smiles that result only from belly laughs and hilarium. I love the way big brother has his hand on little brother's shoulder, and how Momma is laughing with her boys. This photo is SOOC. I sharpened it a little for the web, but I couldn't bring myself to edit it. I think it's lovely the way it is, it is an exact picture of the moment.
And boys will be boys and they enjoyed playing on a sculpture in the middle of the park.
Ahhh, hands in his pockets....
Big Brother asked me if I wanted to see his silly face. Of course I did!
I'm a sucker for pictures from behind. So little, and such a wide world infront of them.
This couldn't get anymore picturesque...water, rocks, bridge, sailboat, and a partially toothless grin.
I think we all have a short-list of irksome spousal habits. The ones at the top of my list are opening cabinets, cupboards, and doors and forgetting to shut them. This usually results in me either hitting my head on an open cupboard, or simply having to shut it to do what I need to do. If you open it, then shut it already. It's terribly annoying and sometimes painful. And, I suppose piggy backing on that would be the whole leaving the toilet seat up thing....a similar breed of annoyance only filthier.
With two kids, I'm awoken nearly every night. Most nights I don't have to get out of bed, but I wake, and toss and turn, and peer at the video monitor while I assess whether or not Chloe Belle will fall back asleep. And, it's also not uncommon for Camdyn to wander down the stairs in the wee morning hours and crawl in to bed with us. Of course, before we allow this we instruct her to use the potty, which she does.
Last night, this was our scenario:
A little voice moans from our bedroom door. "Camdyn, go potty." She flicks on the bathroom light and I hear her rustling around in my bathroom and then suddenly a little voice cries out, "Momma. I need help. Momma. I fell in the potty and I'm all wet." Hubs groans and turns over, I get out of bed to assess the situation. Sure enough, the seat is in the upright position, and Cam's nightgown is soaked with toilet water. Ugh. For, the love, it's 6 am. So, I instruct her to sit tight while I trudge upstairs to find her new bed clothes. When, I return she is sleeping on the bathmat in front of our shower. I re-dress her and we both climb in to bed....for 15 minutes of peace before the alarm begins signaling the start of a Monday morning.
As the Hubs and I did our dance around each other in the bathroom I asked him...."So, you think you can manage to put the seat down before we lose another kid in the toilet?" Hubs, "Girls, so demanding.....I suppose." Cause, I tell you what, the next time the potty swallows a little girl, he'll be cleaning it up.
Last Friday night, Camdyn hosted her first ever "party" which was not related to a birthday.
We had ourselves a Tangled in 3D pajama party with two of Camdyn's pre-school friends. Cam's uncle JJ pre-ordered the Tangled DVD as part of her Christmas present last year, and when the box arrived from Amazon we couldn't wait to let her open it. She watched the regular version over and over that weekend, and then the party planning began, so we put the movie away for a week so she would be excited to watch it with her friends on Friday night.
And, boy were they excited.
We started the evening off with playtime until the sun set, because 3D movies are that much awesomer in total darkness.
Then, we opened a gift from Miss Becky. She bought all of the girls tiny Rapunzel dolls, which they LOVED and played with all night long.
Then, Chloe went to bed, and the lights were turned down, and our living room transformed in to a movie house.
The girls ate popcorn, and drank lemonade out of Rapunzel cups with purple bendy straws. They giggled, and sang along with the movie. They cheered, and covered their eyes, and comforted each other when things got a little scary. They ate ice cream sundaes and stayed up way past their bedtimes. They enjoyed themselves to the hilt.
I'm looking forward to more times like these, times spent with older kids who carry on their own conversations, kids who are building friendships, discovering the world, and exerting true independence. I'm looking forward to more play dates, and sleepovers, and being the Momma that is down for that in a moment's notice.
With every age and stage there are perks....and this is one of them.
On Saturday, we attended the annual egg hunt which is held by our church. This year, scores of children attended. Here Cam & her Bestie pose for a quick photo before they run off to play games.
They separate the hunt in to 3 different age groups. The toddler hunt was held on the sand volleyball courts at the park. We nearly missed it. I had to run with Chloe in my arms to the back of the court so that she could pick up just a handful of eggs. She was a natural egg picker upper.
And then the bigger kids lined up on the softball field for their turn. Of course, the eggs aren't really hidden, they are more or less scattered throughout the field.
It was still fun.
Each child got to collect 10 eggs. We ended up collecting more than that, so we threw a few back.
We let Chloe participate too because I felt badly for partially missing the toddler hunt.
And in the wink of an eye - it was over.
I asked Chloe if I could hold her basket and she said, "no." I asked her if I could hold her hand, and she does this:
Every now and then I get to complaining about how busy things are; how our weekends end up jammed with one social activity followed by another. But, then I stop and think...I wouldn't have it any other way. The childhood joy of participating in events like this, the memories created year after year, make it all worth while.
The vacuuming and the toilet scrubbing can wait. I have children to enjoy.
“If ever there is tomorrow when we're not together.. there is something you must always remember. you are braver than you believe, stronger than you seem, and smarter than you think. but the most important thing is, even if we're apart...
i'll always be with you.”
~Winnie the Pooh
My Cup Runneth Over.
Becky is one of my dearest friends and she is responsible for the pint sized cuteness that is Handsome in the photos above. Chloe Belle adores Miss Becky and last Friday I captured this sweet photo of the two of them together. The moment after I saw this on my display, I said half joking, half serious, mostly both...
"I think I'm going to leave Chloe to you in my will."