Take you to the forest, let you feel the raindrops falling down

This is a blog that is devoted entirely to my little Penelope Wren.

Penelope just turned the big 1 back in November and somehow I missed her one year blog!
Well her special day was so great! We had a quaint little family birthday party that she shared with her cousin Fynn, who is just 7 weeks apart from her. It was a day filled with a lot of love for our little ones.

I thought that this time around I would go low key with it since it was just family. I have learned that a) no matter how little work you put into it leading up to the day, the last couple of days is so filled with perfecting all those little details, that it feels like you spent months on it and b) I don't think I actually know how to go "low key"

Penelope was taking a couple of steps here and there on her special day and fast forward 2 months and she is literally running now. It is unbelievable how much changes over the course of just a short month or two.

In addition to running, she is our little dancing queen. Any time a song comes on the tv, she comes running into the room and squeals with delight as she jumps up and down with her big toothy grin. Her favorite Christmas gift was a little teapot set that she spins around with when it sings her it's little song. It is quite possibly the cutest thing I have ever seen.

We are STILL going through some separation anxiety. She is very attached to mommy and daddy at this time- at least when it is outside the confines of our home. She will engage with friends and family's kisses and smiles...but only from the safety of our arms for the time being.

On a separate note- Penelope has lost her need to suck her fingers. I'm going to miss this...

Penelope is going to be strong woman. She takes her brother's daily pushes and alpha male dominance like a champ (working through one day at a time!). She has survived a bathtub incidence and a topple down the stairs- both of which I wish to never recall unless pointing to God's grace and goodness in continuing to entrust us with her precious little life. She plays amazingly well by herself- something Preson still finds to be very hard to do (what can I say- Im his favorite playmate!) It is a welcome trait that has blessed mama with some room to breathe!
She babbles all day and now says "hi daddy" and "bye daddy", and makes any animal noise you tell her to... but still no "MAMA"!! Oh dear, I will just continue to be patient.

As she moves from baby into tot, I am actually a little more prepared on what to expect this time around. She still remains the sweetest and happiest little spirit I could have ever hoped for. She is our little (yet big) ray of sunshine I love you, Penny Wren!
Can you believe there are less than 3 months between the first picture and this one?? Slow down little girl!


refinement and the choice of happiness

I am at a place in my life where I am 99% mommy and wife and 1% everything else. I am so focused on this stage of life with my children, because I firmly believe that is clearly what God has called me to do.

There are seasons where I allow myself to slip into this very lonely place of motherhood where I feel as though I am barely keeping my head above water. And then there are moments where God recenters me upon my refocusing on him. In those moments, I come back to life in a sense and re-embrace all things that bring beauty back into my life. Turn off the TV and the computer. Turn on some classical music and open the windows. Go outside and take the little ones on a wagon ride or to feed the ducks at the pond or go to the park. Eat healthy, wholesome food in small quantities. Going to my quiet spot and getting in the word of God, meditating on his goodness and talking to him like I truly believe that he is my best friend in the world. Sticking to my schedule. Going to bed at a decent time. Exercising. Sitting in silence...there are so many things in life that are good.

In all things, God gives us a choice. We can choose to live life just getting by and feeling constantly discontent with life- which usually entails living for self. Or we can choose HIS BEST. Which is basking in his creation on all levels and using discernment when we have downtime. What do we do with that time? I know I fall into lazy, selfish indulgences when I have downtime and without fail, those are the times I most feel lifeless.

I have learned that in every stage of my life and my little one's lives, there will always be wonderful parts and tough parts. Being a mommy is the most personal growth I have ever experienced in my life apart from God bringing me to himself. There are times it seems as though the negative encompasses the positive, but it is inevitable that they are both a part of the mothering process and therefore I must submit to the situation of this stage of life. Accept it as part of my life and not only do that, but EMBRACE it. I must not only take on the view that I am teaching my children, but in the process remember that God is teaching and refining me through it all.
Very humbling to be reminded that in most cases it is ME who is the child.