Tuesday, September 6, 2016

Big boy school--we're coming for you

Please, someone tell me this is not happening.

I'm happy.

I'm sad.

I'm nervous.

I'm stressed to my max

I'm excited.

I am, amongst all of the crazy mixed emotions that have led up to this day. I'm excited. For him. For what he will learn, who he will meet, how much he will grow.

This is a big one. It's a big year in our household.

My son just entered in to the next phase of life. And I don't feel ready for this...at all. I've been grieving so hard the past few weeks. It's weird, really. But I hear it's completely normal, and pretty much never goes away with your first.

And I'm going to be honest, this has NOT been a smooth transition. Nothing about it has been smooth, nothing ideal, nothing as I had ever envisioned. Yet, I feel completely led that this is exactly where God wants our little (big) boy.

I have been fretting over school since...well, practically since giving birth! The moment I met Cole in that delivery room, and held his warm skin next to my face, I wanted the best of everything in the world for him. The mere thought of letting someone else spend more time with him than me, his mama, just wasn't what my heart wanted. The main reason why I quit working and we figured out how to make it work for me to stay home full-time.

And it hasn't always been easy. We have had a lot of kinks and curve-balls during the past 5+ years. But it has been good.....so, so good. I will never have any regrets on that single decision to be a part of my boys' lives 24/7. I don't ever have to wish that I was there for his first word, first steps, first foods....I was able to kiss away every boo-boo and learn to release him as time would allow as he grew older and more independent. I got to witness things that no picture or video could ever replace. And yet, I knew our time would swiftly come to an end.

And it has....more swiftly then I feel my heart can take. They don't lie when they say the days are long but the years are short. Yes. About that.

These have been the shortest years of my life.

And just like much of parenting. The curve balls, unknown and flying the the seat of your pants.....the same rang true for us in deciding what school he should go to.

I thought I would home school, so we prepared a school/playroom. We prayed out about.

Then I knew in my heart of hearts that wasn't what was best,  it wasn't our coursse or what Cole needed and he needed more than I could offer him.

So we prayed some more.

A school got put on our radar, it sounded absolutely perfect to me...it took Kyle awhile to warm up to. But in the end it seemed like the best fit. It was part home school/ part public school. A perfect mix of both worlds.

He got the last place in his class. We were thrilled, excited, and felt this was best.

Two weeks before school was to start, we got a phone call.

He was bumped out of his class for some one who last minute applied and was in district.

Cue tears and heart break. And a lot of unknown, again.

More prayers.

Another phone call that there was no room in our first choice boundary exemption. I am freaking out at this point because the public schools were to start in just a few days. All summer I had prepared my heart for only having him away from me 3 half days.....not 5 full days!

Then randomly...I still don't know why. But I started a desperate school search. (we  had already done this months and months ago). I happened upon a Christian school that we had previously  dismissed because they didn't offer half day kinder....

Suddenly a box popped up on my screen as I went to their website.

"We are now offering half day Kindergarten"

We called, they took us for a tour the next day. For the first time Kyle and I both left, looked at each other and said, "this feels right."

So it's been a mad dash filling out more applications, getting assessments done, making it to orientations, buying a completely different list of school supplies and gearing up for dragging three kids to drop Cole off 5 days a week at what seems like the  crack of dawn!

I still cry about it. I was definitely that mom in the front row (thanks Cole) balling my eyes out during orientations months ago....

But with my tears I have peace. I know without a doubt this is where God has led us. He closed some big doors to get us to this point. And I so very excited to watch how this plays out.

Mostly I'm exited to watch where this boy is going to soar to as he opens up his wings.

Cole, your mama could not be any more proud of the young boy you are becoming. I hope you never lose your sensitivity, motivation, and love of building. I pray you fall deeper in love with Jesus and am so thankful you will have the opportunity to grasp an even deeper understanding of who He is as you study His Word. May He grip your heart like none other and may you choose to never let go.

You have some amazing trails to blaze ahead, blaze them wisely and thoughtfully (as I'm sure you will)

Love you with all my heart, to the moon and back, forever and ever. I can't even begin to express how thankful I am to only have to miss your face for a few short hours.....I don't think I could bare much more than that! Because those eyes kind of kill me and make my day, every day.

Now go get em' and may you be stronger than your mother. ;)

(All Photos were taken by the amazing Amy Wennerlind of Amy W. Photo--thanks Amy!)


Friday, September 2, 2016

Davis: 18 months

I just can't even begin to understand how I have gone nearly 3 months without a blog post? Actually I can, between 3 mostly adorable little boys, starting a photography business, and figuring out what the heck we were going to do for Cole and school...yeeeeeaaaaahhhh, this mama has been a bit overwhelmed. OK, fine, A LOT overwhelmed.

I have actually tried to type up a post several different times, but then it seemed someone always woke up when they should be sleeping, someone needed nursing, food, milk, a snack, their nose blown, their bum wiped, yougurt scrubbed off the floor, or hands cleaned from playing in the toilet....

it just never seemed to pan out, but believe me when I say the intentions were there.

And then I told myself, at least I have Davis' 18 month post coming up...that will for sure happen...

Almost a month later, and it's finally happening!

 More than anything, this boy, he is the most mellow fellow in all the land. I keep waiting for the day he outgrows this, but alas, he just keeps on being his sweet, mellow self.

This has been such a fun stage with him. He is fast enough that he does a pretty good job keeping up with his brothers, but he is still very much my baby.

Does he ever have to stop being my baby?

He is tough as nails. Not much can make him cry, and if he does, then you know he is really, really, REALLY hurt. This month, he fell down our stairs, but somehow managed to stop himself half-way down. Scared the living snot out of me. After hearing him, I found him bracing himself, like a starfish, across several stairs to keep from falling any further. He cried for a good 30 seconds, and after lots of kisses and snuggles, he scrambled to get on with his day.

He climbs. Oh boy, does he climb....on everything! When he is caught, he giggles and does a happy dance on whatever he has climbed on top of.  He makes it really hard to scold or get upset with him. Oh boy....

He puts up with being shoved, pushed, pulled and knocked down by one particular brother. And recently learned how to retaliate when he has enough. Deep inside I silently cheer him on (is that bad?!), because people, he turns his other cheek over and over again.....so much more than most his age...or any age really.

He loves, loves, loves books. His favorites by far are, "Orange, Pear, Apple, Bear" any Thomas the train book (we have about 5 that he rotates through) and "The Little Blue Truck" (also my personal fave). Often times he will climb up on my lap with a book, or if he gets really quiet you can pretty much bet he is sitting somewhere flipping through the pages....

Or playing in the toilet. (that dang toilet and the older hands that continually forget to close the bathroom door!)

He often is let outside in the backyard by one of his brothers, and absolutely loves this. But prefers bare feet and a diaper instead of proper clothing.

 Mud. He loves it. Even more if he can cover himself head to toe. All the days.

I try to embrace this, I do. But man, sometimes the clean-up about does me in. Because guaranteed this happens immediately after I scrub my floors. And then I get muddy little prints all over those shiny floors, and I try not to scream...usually just cry. Then I laugh when I look at the pictures. Pretty much I'm a bit bipolar when it comes to how I feel about mud.

He still has the most adorable beer-like belly, tree stumps for legs, and the squishiest cheeks that bounce up and down when he breaks into a full-blown run. He learned to jump....errrr....more like bend down, with a really long wind up....only to stand up super tall, with his hands in the air. But oh the proud look on his face afterwards, priceless.

Although, last night I think both feet almost cleared the floor!

Sleep. Hmmmm.....this is debatable. If you compare it to him waking every 1-2 hours like he had been doing for months and months that seemed like years upon years....then he is doing 110 times better. He's down to waking 1 but mostly 2 times a night. Thankfully he is learning that he WILL survive without an all-night buffet. This mama is trying to close up the graveyard shift!

But he still very much loves to nurse. And still gives me very persistent little pokes if he thinks he is due for a drink. This is often. And ALWAYS a must if I sit down at my computer.

He is starting to talk or at least thinks he can. He will have some pretty convincing conversations that make no senses because most of it is still gibberish. You can often hear him mimicking his brothers and repeating words he hears. It's pretty cute, and for the most part his brothers get really excited whenever he copies something they say. For a long time if you asked a question, didn't matter what question, he would nod his head "yes". He would nod "yes" to questions in books while reading, if you were asking someone else a question....everything was "yes". Now he has learned "no" and actually saying "yah!" along with his head nodding.

And for the most part I am just loving this stage. (I feel like I say that with all of his stages)

The wonder, the way you can see his little mind turning and turning and figuring everything out. The way his eyes tell me a deeper story than words ever could. His cuddliness, his patience, his inner joy that bursts from everything he does.

My heart still mourns the fact that soon this too will change and he is going to get bigger, stronger, and will probably pick up habits that aren't quite so cute nor sweet. But for this moment, everything about his is still so incredibly sweet. He is the essence of sweet. And I,  am still a huge part of his world. He looks at me, his eyes sparkle and shine with joy and love all over his face. He loves to give me the tightest hugs around my neck while simultaneously patting my back. Is there a better feeling than having chubby, baby hands squeeze your neck with such intense love?

I am his safe place, the place he runs to to escape wild brothers, unfamiliar faces, and his church nursery.

 Gosh, I just love this little one. At his 18 month appointment he was in the 11th percentile (31 inches) for height and 44th percentile for weight (23 lbs). Short and sturdy seems to be his jam.

He is just so precious. In the midst of stressful days and long nights, he never ceases to bring out the joy in my heart. He has a special way about it, some say it's the 3rd child, I say it's God-breathed. God breathed this amazing life in to him, every day I am reminded of His faithfulness and how grateful I am to get to be his mom. I know I am better because of him and some days all I want to do is to sit and drink him in deeply. Because I have never been more aware than I am today just how fast they grow up. I am pulling my big girl panties up and getting ready to send Cole off to Kindergarten. Don't talk to me about it, because chances are I will start wimpering and crying before I can get any words past my lips.

So yes, I'm soaking this one up as long as he will let me. Because he just makes it so easy. Easy to smile, easy to breathe, easy to love. He's the easy one....not the most loved in any way...just super duper easy peasy.

That's him, in a nutshell.

Sweat and easy.