{faith . family . friendship . fashion . fitness . food . fun . fabulosity}


Sunday, July 24, 2011

{hello there:)}

Anniversaries, birthdays, changes of seasons, new phases of life, the passing of time....ok, pretty much EVERYTHING....makes me sentimental. Combine our 12 year anniversary, madeline & claire's recent birthdays, the mark of our first year in NJ, the end of our first trip back to FL, a new school year on the horizon, the begging and pleading of my mother;) and the tugging on my heart to start blogging again and here I am....the new and improved blog. As usual, life has been challenging, strengthening and blessed in so many ways and I am excited to begin capturing it here again. First, let's get caught up!

Gosh, I love that guy. As I was shopping for anniversary cards, I noticed that there is this whole new section of cards within the anniversary section dedicated to "I love our family life". I picked up card after card and read sentiments that described loving "our kids, our family time, etc" but never mentioned a single thing about loving the actual spouse! This was so sad to me...so sad, in fact, that I found myself reading card after card because I was in disbelief of how many like that there were on the shelves. Don't get me wrong, I absolutely adore our children and as a "quality time" love language girl, one of my favorite things in this world IS our family time together....doing anything and everything just the five of us. But I hope and pray that I never reach a point in my marriage where it no longer becomes about US. As much as I love our kids and the family God has blessed us with, I love Ryan. I love that he is my best friend in the whole world, the person I feel the most at home with. I love that he is patient and loving and kind. I love that he can have more fun with the girls than I ever will but he can also be the voice of reason. I love that he is future-minded and sees the big picture when I only see the here and now. I love that he is way more obsessed with shoes than I am;) I love that he values me and is devoted to me. I love that he drives home everyday just to eat lunch with us. I love when he thinks he needs a haircut, but really it looks just perfect to me. I love that he considers shopping at Nordstrom a totally acceptable date. I love that the words he writes on a card can make me burst into tears. I love a million different things about him and I love that I love him more the more I know him. I am continually in complete awe and thanking God for the marriage He has blessed us with. And I will fight to keep it that way:)

I spent a good part of this year concerned and prayerful for my biggest girl and the Lord has been so faithful in answering those prayers. Em is my most shy and introverted and the one that has always given me the most worry lines. Adjusting to a new school and new friends was hard for her, but she's getting into her groove. A minor crisis a few months back that led to her being grounded for two weeks and me completely MORTIFIED! has surprisingly turned itself into a new friendship with a sweet little girl. This summer has been great for Emma....she is HAPPY as a clam and right now, and for this girl, that's good enough for me. I'm not sure if I've ever seen her this content and with her guard completely down. I'm so thankful to God for that blessing. She is a great big sister....thrilled to have Madeline at her school next year and excited to show her the ropes. I love overhearing her filling Madeline in on life at South Valley:) She is Claire's other mommy...if she gets the chance to dress her, feed her breakfast or read her a book, it's the highlight of her day. She finds value in feeling needed and capable and I find value in having an extra set of hands. Win/win? I think so! I'm still amazed at how well she reads....I don't think there's anything that we've thrown at her that she couldn't just read right back to us like it was the easiest thing in the world. Crazy, how quickly they grow:(

Sweet Madeline, where do I start?! For most of her life, I have labeled Mad as "the easy one". HA. HA. HA. Boy, was I wrong!!! Madeline is still a people pleaser and has the sweetest, most loving heart, but easy? No way. I don't know if it's classic middle child syndrome starting to make itself known, but Mad has quickly become our handful. There are several times a day where I have to brace myself because I know that any little change of pace or her not getting her way will turn into a complete Maddy Meltdown. Trust me, you don't want to be anywhere near one. They're UGLY. Kicking, screaming, out of control, "you are way too big to be doing this", ugly. The good news is that the meltdowns eventually come to and end when she realizes that we're not giving in and just like that she's back to being her sweet and happy self. The bad news is I don't see them going away anytime soon. Mad has many nicknames around here...."little miss forgetful" (the amount of stuff this girl loses is actually kind of shocking), "little miss complainy pants" (we're working on Philippians 2:14 for this.....so far, it's not really working;)) "little miss sunshine" (because other than when she's in meltdown mode, she is one of the silliest and happiest people I've ever met). I'm trying more and more to not take her for granted and to make sure my monkey in the middle knows that she is loved and valued as much as the next girl.

Claire is 100% girl, 100% adorable and full of 100% attitude. She looks like a 2 year old, talks like a 3 year old, thinks she's a 15 year old and spends half her day posing in front of a mirror. The world is Claire's stage. She thrives on being the center of attention and she usually gets it...whether it's just our family being held captive by her antics at the dinner table or any adult that loves the girl with the huge personality and the tiny body. Bear wakes up in the morning and immediately needs to get dressed in the fanciest thing she can find...it's a tutu EVERY. SINGLE. DAY. for this girl and if I even think about dressing her in anything else, I literally have to listen to a sob story about how "no one will think I'm beautiful". Claire and I have a talk on a daily basis about inner beauty, but for this just turned three year old that already has her mind fixed on her wedding day and the boy of her dreams (jonah glassford:)) it's not really sinking in. I've got my work cut out for me with this one! I cannot wait to have her all to myself at home while the big girls are at school this year :)

{and then there's me....}
I'm the same as always and hopefully different all at the same time. The Lord has really used this year to stretch me and mold me. There's nothing like being thrown from your comfort zone and starting over from scratch to keep you on your toes. I am thankful for all of the pain, sadness, excitement, loneliness, hopefulness and the million different ups and downs that this year brought because they have all drawn me nearer to the Lord. I had the best time in Florida...it was great to spend so much time with my family and to jump right back in with my friends. There were so many times throughout the trip that I forgot that I had moved, felt like I had never left and I thought that leaving would rip my heart out. I am so thankful that the Lord protected me from that. When we got back here, it actually felt like home. I had people I couldn't wait to see, places I couldn't wait to go and a house that I was anxious to settle back into. This was a huge answer to prayer! I have been loving the laziness of summer and the chance to spend extra quiet time because there is nowhere we need to be running off to. The girls have been memorizing scripture (they are sponges...it's incredible how fast they pick it up). I love how it's keeping me in the word, excitedly looking for their next verse to learn and how the silly little hand motions we come up with make it so easy for Ryan and I to memorize right along with them:) I am already counting down until the fall....daydreaming about the change of seasons and remembering how blessed we are to experience it. I still love a shiny new Range Rover, the latest j crew catalog, and the new fall floor set at pottery barn as much as the next girl (ok, probably MORE than the next girl), but it all pales in comparison to Jesus and the hope I have in Him. As great as those things are, they are temporary...and they still leave me longing for more...and there is SO much more than this world has to offer....how great is that?:)



Jill said...

so glad your blog is back and with such a beautiful entry~love you, glad you are home and excited to spend another fall together!

alisson boyd said...

i was just online reading your blog! love you too and can't wait to hang out again :)