Saturday, December 31, 2011

'Tis Better to Give...

That's what I found out this year!

Since I'm a big kid at school all day, Nana and DD have less time to spend with me. Reese and Kate get to see them during the week sometimes, but I'm at school. So, when Christmas break rolled around, Nana and DD and I had a special day together.

Our day at the Galleria turned into a shopping spree for me! When we visited the new Disney Store, I got really excited about all of the gifts there were to choose from.... This one for Katie, this one for Mommy... and don't forget Uncle Trey! I found many gifts at The Disney Store but not everyone's... we had to visit the Lego store and a lotion place to finish off my list. And then... back at Nana and DD's house, I was allowed to wrap the presents!

I was so excited and kept dropping hints (but never gave away Mom or Dad's gifts) so Nana and DD decided this might be a new thing for our family. A few nights later, Kate, Nana and DD all snuck away to do their Christmas shopping as well. Nana said that Kate is a very decisive shopper... she knows who wants what! She was in the dog aisle and Nana asked, "Kate, do you want to buy presents for Oscar and Dottie?" Kate told her, "No. They only like chocolate and I don't see any chocolate here." True enough.

The best part of gift giving wasn't the shopping OR the wrapping... although that was amazing. The best part was when we gathered as a family and I got to watch everyone open their gifts! Legos for Trey, a back scratcher for David, mugs for Mom and Dad, lotion for Erin, Nana and Amanda, dolls for all of us girls. I giggled with glee as each person opened their present and told me how perfect they were.

I loved the presents I got this year, also. But I'd say this Christmas, it was better to give than to receive!


Monday, December 19, 2011

Christmas Love

Kate, after singing a completely original Christmas-ish song to me:

"Mommy, did you like my song? My heart gave it to my mouth and my mouth sang it to you!"

And then, this:

"When I get a present at Christmas, I will share it with Mia and Avery a'cuz Mia is my cousin and Avery is my friend and I want them to be happy."

Our Katie Beth, our little Christmas Love.

Tuesday, December 13, 2011

Happy Five Months, Reese!

Reese is 5 months old today. Highlights from the last month:

FIRST TOOTH! She's been trying to tell us that she's teething for a while now, but finally, a day before her 5 month birthday, a tooth appeared! It's the bottom center right tooth. Precious girl was pretty miserable and stayed up around the clock for about a week while it came out.

Eating and sleeping: Reese has moved herself to a 4 hour feeding schedule and has also been introduced to baby food. So far, she has tried (and loved): rice cereal, sweet potatoes, and carrots. The week that she was teething, she screamed nonstop for about an hour each afternoon, so I took the baby food away for a few days to see if that was the problem (it wasn't - the tooth was). She's gladly back to eating baby food twice a day. Aside from terrible sleep the week of the tooth, Reese sleeps really well, with a 5 am feeding to hold her over until she wakes up at 7 or 8.

Reese weighs 15 1/2 pounds according to our unofficial baby scale.

New tricks: Reese's accuracy with reaching, grabbing, and moving items to where she wants them has improved drastically in the last month. She can sit up with help from the boppy or a chair (but not yet on her own) and loves to do the plank - arms straight, head held high - when she is doing her tummy time.

Reese is totally over the bouncy chair and throws her weigh around until she has either rolled forward out of it or scooted herself off of the bottom of it. Luckily, this happened right in time for her to fall in love with her excersaucer, jumperoo, and even her high chair.

It's cliche but true: time goes by way too fast. This baby cannot possibly be almost half of the way done with her first year! But alas, it's true.

Luckily, every new stage of babyhood has been better than the last. We love you so, little Miss Ree. Happy 5 Months!

Monday, December 12, 2011

A Sister's Love Is A Dangerous Thing

Mom can't keep her eyes on me all the time. I get that. But there are times... a lot of times... when I wish she was just a bit faster to look over at me.

Big Sister Kate loves me so much. And she has some favorite ways of showing it.

Like doing a forward roll over my face.

Or climbing into a child-sized chair. While I'm already sitting in it.

Or hugging me to the point of suffocation.

Or spreading lip gloss all over her lips and then transferring it to my face via kisses.

Or setting our tent up on top of me and adding plenty of toys for us to play with.

Or deciding to start a band with me and trying to teach me to play the recorder by shoving it into my mouth over and over again.

Big Sister Kate is full of love. I only hope I can survive it!


Sunday, December 4, 2011


I'm not often left speechless. Words usually come easy for me.

But lately, there are so many moments when I get the fullness of one of these girls.

They give me a look or say something that I want to be etched into my very being so I won't forget it. Or maybe I drive past the hospital and realize how very blessed we are to have three healthy girls. Or I'll be walking to school and notice how easy it is for Avery to run ahead of me and then come back to hold my hand... she's not too old for me just yet.

There are so many reasons, so many unpredictable instances. They come upon me and my heart aches with joy and love deeper than I've previously understood. In a moment, I'm brought to my knees and tears well up.

And I have no words.

No way to tell the Lord the depth of my gratitude, no way to pass on to my girls that the very beating of my heart is theirs. I can't seem to figure out how to express what happens to me, but not for lack of trying.

Some things, it seems, are deeper than words.

And I am blessed.