Disclaimer: I print my blog and make it in to books, so from time to time I dote on my kiddo's - I want to remember their idiosyncrasies that make them unique . This is one of those times. :-)
We're on Christmas break and for the first time in a long time, we've been basking in family time! It may seem as if homeschooling would allot for plenty of family time, and it's true that we do spend a lot of time together. But, most days are spent going from one subject or activity to the next...and many days I feel like I hardly even looked at the kids...you know...really really looked at them with appreciation. So for me personally, the past few days have been spent basking in their freckles, their goofy big teeth (which will most definitely require braces before long...), their chipmunk cheeks and their awesome personalities. It's been wonderful...lots of cuddling on the couch, dancing in the living room to Christmas carols, leisurely meals around the kitchen table and snuggling under the blankets until mid-morning.
I know I usually lean towards sarcasm - humor and sarcasm helps me get through each chaotic/stressful day! But the past few days have involved pure unadulterated joy in my
babies children. I love them. I'm grateful for them. I'm proud of them. And I'm enjoying them tremendously!!
Lillie Anna...the runt of our group. I think right now she is bringing us the most joy...laughter and smiles are a by-product of being in her company. Who needs television when you have Lillie Anna?! ;-) We all remember the misery and suffering she experienced less than a year ago before we knew what was causing her to be so ill. So to see her blossoming and developing both physically, emotionally and spiritually, brings us so much joy...sometimes I look at her and feel as if my heart could burst. Gluten-sensitivity has been her miracle diagnosis that has given her (and subsequently, our family) the gift of healing and peace, but she's so much more than a Celiac diagnosis! She's our accessory lovin', nail polish paintin', joke tellin', mischief maker who finds joy in singing loudly and making others smiles...we absolutely adore her!!
Singing "You better watch out, you better not cry, you better not pout I'm tellin' you why..."
Shepherd...my mini-me. :-) He's the first to offer to carry groceries inside for me and is the first to attempt to make peace between his sisters when they bicker. I've told the kids many times that being a peacemaker is one of the biggest gifts they could give their momma' and he's taken that to heart! He's just a good boy...I've been around enough children to know that his sweet spirit should be appreciated! He's not perfect, but he's so teachable and desires to please. Compliant and easy going...and a rule follower to a fault (sorry Shep, you got that from me...). He came in to our room a few weeks ago with his phone and with tears in his eyes, he confessed to Chad and I that he had been playing games on it for 10 minutes each night that week (this was against the rules). He was wiping tears from his eyes as he told us that "a phone being kept in his room at night was just too much responsibility". <
> So we agreed to keep his phone in our room at night to remove the temptation. ;-) Super sweet and I LOVE his honest heart that is tender enough to be convicted! He still never stops moving...but we're beginning to see his constant motion and high energy serve him well as he exceeds in sports and as he channels his energy in to studies. Deeply proud of this lil' guy...who's not so little anymore...I'm betting in two years he'll be taller than his Meemaw. ;-)
And our Rauly-girl. I saved Rauly for last because she makes me think. I can easily define Lillie and Shepherd's personality, but Rauly in many ways is my mystery child. She's takes me off guard on a regular basis (and I mean that in a good way). She's feisty and spunky and confident. She doesn't know a stranger and I have to watch her like a hawk in public places because no amount of warnings seem to prevent her from gravitating to people she doesn't know. Her feistiness shows through in her temperament and her ability to go from happy to run-fast-or-I-will-kick-the-fire-outa-you in .2 seconds continues to crack us up...Chad and I have said many times that Rauly is a very. easy. target. when it comes to pushing her buttons. ;-) Chad relates very easily to her. Which is a blessing because so often I find myself unsure of how to handle her temperament but when I look to Chad with a deer in the headlights look, he can immediately take over...because he "gets her". She's the first to pop a gasket when she's mad, but she's also the first to offer forgiveness when I've offended or hurt her. She's the first to "play the victim" with her siblings which in the past has made me worry about insecurities, but she's the first to rush over to hug her old friends or walk in to a group of strangers to make new friends. When she's in her comfort zone, she's over-flowing with personality and "spunk" but is also an extremely calm child...sits still and speaks softly (usually) and that my friends is something I REALLY appreciate these days... She's tough as nails and rarely cries, but she's the first to feel compassion for others when they're sick or in pain. These are just a few examples of why I say she's a walking contradiction and often leaves me scratching my head. But I couldn't be prouder of her and am thankful for the ways she stretches me as a parent. She's a special and unique little girl and I love the layers that make her who she is!!
These three children light up my life!!