Tuesday, March 31, 2015

A Renewed Focus

This week, Holy Week, is a very contemplative week for me.  Not only reflecting on what Christ did for me but how I can live that out in all aspects of my life.  One of those aspects is motherhood.  Today I had to take an unplanned day off and my mind started going crazy thinking about all the things I could get done with this extra day off.  As I was planning my to-do list, I begun thinking that perhaps I should do something with the L's that they would enjoy doing. I normally would have been at work and my list wouldn't have gotten done anyways.  This lead me to think about how I spend my weekends with them.

I thought about the four days I have off every week with Lena and Levi and a typical day is usually dragging them through the grocery store or whatever errands I need to do or staying at home so I can clean or do yard work and every now and then throwing in a fun activity.  I am fortunate that Garth's days off align with some of mine so when he's not leading hikes or climbing mountains, we do have family time together.

But I realized I have wasted so many potential moments with the L's and starting today that was going to change.  I want them to have fun memories and not memories of mommy trying to get her to-do list done.

Since Lena is always asking if we can "take the Max train to daddy's airport?"  I decided that's what we would do today even though I knew it would take most of the day.  Lena was so excited when I told her!  The look on her face was priceless.  She talked non-stop the entire ride to the airport.  Levi stood on the seat looking out the window squealing and chattering.  I sat listening to them thankful for this time together making memories and time that I could give them my undivided attention. To top it off, Garth was able to take a break at the time we were there so we had quality time with daddy too.

From here on out, I want parts of my weekends focused completely on the L's with no distractions.  Whether it be a morning playing at home, finding new parks,exploring parts of our city, hiking or whatever; I want them to remember that they have my undivided attention and how important they are to me.

My house will always need to be cleaned, laundry will always need to be done but Lena and Levi will not be little forever.  

Sunday, June 15, 2014

Our Daddy

Any man can be a dad, but it takes a special one to be a father.  The dictionary defines father as a paternal protector and provider; two of many characteristics that Garth has.  Watching him with Lena and Levi is so beautiful; at times bringing me to tears.  The love that is exchanged is priceless.  Here are some traits that make Garth a fabulous father:

  • Godly:  He is the spiritual leader in our home.  Setting the example of what a Godly man is.  Lena loves to have her daddy read Bible stories from her children's Bible.
  • Provider:  Garth works a physically demanding job to provide for his family and so I can go to school.  Plus Lena thinks it's pretty awesome that her daddy works at the airport with airplanes.  
  • Fun:  I always knew Garth would be a fun father and he hasn't let me down.  When I hear giggles and squeals coming from another room, I know that there is probably a bed being bounced on, "piggy rides" going on, dancing to music, wrestling and many more ordinary things that Garth turns into fun experiences.  All while Levi sits back and thinks "someday it will be my turn."
  • Love of the outdoors:  Garth has passed his love of the outdoors onto our kids.  Lena loves being outside rain, shine, snow or hail and Levi is very content outdoors.  Garth has taken Lena on several father/daughter hikes and that leaves Lena asking, "I go hiking with my daddy?"  
  • Patience:  He is always so calm and patient with Lena and Levi.  Even when both are screaming at the same time. 
It is also the everyday occurrences that show how loved he is.  Lena anxiously waiting for Garth to come home so she can run outside and scream "Daddy!!"  Levi smiling every time Garth walks in the room.  Lena, when getting her first pair of flip flops, "just like daddy!"  Levi cooing when Garth talks to him.  Lena wanting to take her shirt off because daddy has his off.

I am so proud and blessed to have Garth in my life and on this parenting adventure together. 

Garth, we love you so much.  Thank you for filling our lives with love and laughter.  


Friday, March 14, 2014

Taming the Bear

The weather has been so beautiful this week that I decided to take Lena and Levi to the park yesterday.  Something, I'm sure, will be happening a lot.  After swinging and walking the trail around the park, Lena wanted to go down the slide.  Last year Garth taught her how to climb the steps and go down the slide by herself.  So now that's a favorite at the park.  

So after having the slide to herself for a while, another little girl came over to play on it as well.  A great opportunity to teach Lena about sharing.  Well...until the unthinkable happened.  As Lena was climbing the stairs to take her turn (with me standing right beside her), the little girl starts climbing the narrow steps and squeezes herself between Lena and the bars and pushes past Lena nearly knocking her off the steps.  Lena begins to wail and that's when it happened...the mama bear came out in me.  

Now mama bear has made an appearance once or twice before, but not under these circumstances.  Mama bear was angry.  Mama bear scolded the little girl while her mom sat and watched, doing nothing. 

When Lena had calmed down a little, I encouraged her to try the slide again.  As soon as she saw that little girl come close, the wailing starts again.  How dare anyone do that to my little girl.  When she once again starts pushing past Lena on the steps, the mother comes over and tells her to wait her turn. But in mama bear's eyes, it was too little too late.  Lena didn't want to go on the slide anymore that day.  

Although very few words were spoken, my body language was speaking pretty loudly.  I realized then that I need to tame the bear.  The bear needs to learn to show love in unfair situations not just because little cubs are watching but because it's how we are called to live.  

Tuesday, March 11, 2014

This Mommy's Heart

This is my very first blog and I'm a little nervous.  I've wanted to start one for a while but have been hesitant since I'm not a very good writer.  English wasn't my best subject.  Plus I don't know my way around a computer very well.  For example, I don't know how to post pictures to my blog yet and haven't figured out how to change the "about me' to me and not Garth.  But as soon as my personal, live-in tech support team (aka: Garth) gets back into town to show me, my next blog may be better.  

Now Garth does a great job of keeping people informed of our life through his blog and my blog my overlap some of the same stories.  My blog will just be from a wife and mommy perspective.  I may also share more of what's on my heart and what God is doing in my life.  

A recent experience has me wanting to write about it.  March 14th is mine and Garth's 16 year wedding anniversary.  Garth had the week off so we decided to go somewhere even though I was only going for 4 days.  I knew I couldn't be away from Lena and Levi for longer than that.  The week leading up to our departure was filled with mixed emotions.  I found myself getting excited then the next moment crying at the thought of leaving my kids.  Other than occasional date nights, Garth and I hadn't had a vacation together without kids in a year and a half.  I was excited to finally have this time with him but little did I know how this would effect this mommy's heart.  

I was comforted in the fact that both grandmas' would split the time staying at our house with the kids. So that should have made it easier to leave, right? Wrong. I was not prepared for the flood of emotions I felt early Friday morning as we left for the airport.  I remember crying the first time we left Lena, but nothing like what happened this time.  Maybe it was because we had a 7 week-old now or that I'm still hormonal from breastfeeding.  But this time the tears kept coming.  My mommy's heart was breaking. 

 Even the TSA guy at the airport asked why I looked so sad and with that, the tears began to flow again.  Garth was quick to jump in and explain so I wouldn't have to.  As the plane roared down the runway and began to lift off, I laid my head on Garth's shoulder and cried.  I didn't care what the people around me thought.  All I could think about was the aching in my mommy's heart.  We finally got to Dublin Saturday morning and I was feeling better and even excited although there was still a yearning in my heart for my babies. 

 Garth and I had a great time in Dublin and am so glad I went.  The best and perhaps the most important part of the trip for me was on Sunday night in a little restaurant called Sweetwaters.  We had a simple conversation about what I had been feeling, on parenting, and being able to spend time together.  In that moment I felt a new closeness with Garth that I had not felt in a while and I knew I had made the right choice in going to Dublin.  Having a toddler and a newborn sometimes I get so focused on trying to be the best mom that I forget that I still need to strive to be the best wife; a Proverbs 31 wife.  

Looking back, I think the sadness I was feeling in my mommy's heart was something I have been struggling with for a while:  completely trusting God with the two most precious people in my life.  I'm the type of person that sometimes thinks God needs my help in certain situations and one of those being the protector of my kids.  I need to remember that He is our ultimate protector but it's hard for me to let go and let God sometimes.  I know that He is growing me through this struggle.  

I have been blessed with the most patient, understanding, caring and compassionate husband of almost 16 years.  He pulls me out of my comfort zone when I don't want to be but am always glad he pulled.  He pulled me this time and I am so thankful he did.   We had a great Dublin adventure but for me it was seen through this mommy's heart.