Thursday, February 28, 2013

Nighttime conversations with Scarlett...

Scarlett:  Mommy, I don't want to close my eyes.  Sometimes I have bad dreams.
Me:  Oh honey, I'm so sorry.  Let's think of some happy things before we go to sleep.  Like pancakes.
Scarlett:  Oooh, like talking pancakes.
Me:   with chocolate chips...or popsicles
Scarlett:  oh yeah, singing popsicles
Scarlett (after a long pause):  Mom, you know how that little boy in the Bible beat Goliath?
Me:  How hunny?
Scarlett:  God was on his side.
Me:  That's right sweetheart, God was on his side.  Is God on your side?
Scarlett:  Yes, and mommy too.
Me:  Yes, I am always on your side, and Daddy.  Maybe we can ask God tonight for good dreams?  Do you want to pray?
Scarlett:  Dear God, thank you for today, and I pray for happy dreams, Amen.
Me:  That was perfect sweetie. 

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Wednesday, February 20, 2013


Scarlett absolutely LOVES her cousins.  In fact, most mornings after asking me what we are going to do she usually asks if we can see her cousins.  You can expect to have at least one conversation per day with Scarlett that will include the names Audrey, Michael or Lizzie, and most of the time these conversations relay bits and pieces of truth mixed with imagined play dates and deep desire for future play dates.

Unfortunately, her cousins live in Fallbrook.  Just far enough away that it is an all day adventure with actual play time squeezed in between an hour and a half drive there and back.  But on the days that we chose to bite off the long drive with a toddler and a new born it is all worth it to watch Scarlett smile as she jets from the car screaming her cousins names and fall instantly into the heavenly realm of pure playtime pleasure.

There are no other kids in this world that make Scarlett as happy as her just to work on getting Joe and Kim to move the family about 1.5 hours north. 

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Tuesday, February 19, 2013

Late night conversations with Scarlett...

Putting Scarlett to sleep can sometimes be a huge hassle.  We created bad habits early and three years later they are still hard to shake.  Every night we go through our routine of books, prayers and songs before trying to convince her of her big girl status and slip out without having to rock her or rub her back till she falls asleep.  But some nights I do indulge her, lay down next to her and stroke her hair until her eyes close and her breathing deepens.  Last night as I lay behind her rubbing her back and giving her sweet kisses, I whispered in her ear that I never wanted her to grow up, and this is how the conversation unfolded:

Me: Scarlett, I don't want you to grow up.
Scarlett (serious look in her eyes):  But mom, all kids have to grow up
Me:  I know, but I just want you to be my baby girl forever
Scarlett:  Yes, but I have to grow bigger.  I want to be like my cousins
Me:  Yeah, I guess your cousins are bigger than you.  But, I always want you to be my tiny little love bug. 
Scarlett (places her arm around my neck): Mom, it's okay.  I am right by your side.  (Gives me a sweet kiss on the lips.) I will love you forever. 

Since the day Scarlett was born I have spent countless hours looking down at her face in the dark and whispering those words, but last night as she whispered them back, I cried.  I cried knowing that regardless of the fact that I can not stop time and freeze these perfect moments with my little girl, she will still always be my little girl.  Wise beyond her years. 

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Friday, February 15, 2013


Scarlett LOVES to read, even on the bathroom floor, in the dark.  (with lights sticks to guide her)

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Thursday, February 14, 2013

Baby baby baby...

Scarlett took this picture of her and her brother and then I died from the cute. 

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Wednesday, February 13, 2013

Creative expression...

Sometimes I have to remember to let Scarlett be herself.   Until about a year ago I would hover over her as she waddled around the house.  Picking up her messes, take a running tally of the contents of our entire house. I always knew where her favorite toy lay tossed aside in the frenzy of finding something more exciting to play with.  I gently encouraged her to follow the rules and stay inside the lines. Craft projects are always done step by step, glue is always placed in perfect dots and paper is always cut in a straight line. Food was always eaten straight from spoon to mouth. Spills are never kept sitting on the table for longer than the duration of the meal.  This is very much who I am.  I am a rule follower.  As Scarlett started becoming more of a little person and especially as she starting playing with friends, I noticed that she is very similar.  I wonder if this is because of my hovering or because she was born with these inclinations. She closes doors before she leaves a room, closes cupboards after grabbing a snack, yells to me from across the house when she spills a dollop of oatmeal on the kitchen table, she dots her "i"'s and crosses her "t"'s.  She is a mini me. 

Except when she wants to paint.   Since the beginning of her painting days she forgets the rule of paper only and almost always ends up in the bath tub, covered head to toe with the rainbow.  And in this artistic area I accept a little creative expression (or a lot in most painting cases) as long as it doesnt carry over onto the walls.


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Tuesday, February 12, 2013

Tiny tot band...

These kids kill me sometimes. 

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Monday, February 11, 2013

Time is ticking away...

There are so many differences between the beginning months I spent with Scarlett and the time I have spent with Dominic.

This time I am bottle feeding, my patience for feeding from the breast was slim to none and within the first week I switched to pumped milk.  His diet is still purely breast milk, but not from the source.  I remember spending so many quiet nights with Scarlett, sitting still in the silence, looking down at her face and weeping for the joy of this tiny child.   With Dominic, I wake in a fit of flurry rush to the kids bedroom and scoop him up before his whimpers become cries loud enough to wake his sister.  I run to the kitchen and prepare a bottle, rush back to my bedroom and shove it in his mouth to calm his now impatient cries.  It is much less peaceful than the quiet moments I formed with Scarlett over and over again. 

I have so much less time to sit in a quiet house just watching.  With Scarlett I would sit for hours just watching her move.  Watching her limbs slowly transition from wild undefined movement, to batting at the figures hanging within inches of her tiny nose, before finally settling into a conscience desire to strategically wrap her fingers one by one around an object and bring it delicately to her mouth.  Dominic seems to jump to these new milestones within moments.  Each one slipping by in a frenzy of bath time, bed time, feeding time and play time,  intermingled with the side project of keeping his sister from breaking her neck as she turns the world around her into a giant obstacle course.  

I go days without ever actually looking at his face and when I do I have to double take, thinking that somehow he has been switched with someone elses blue eyed beauty.   He is inches longer than I last remembered, no longer fitting into his shrinking three month clothes.  His eyes are closer together and his face is longer.  I notice his finger nails have grown, but only because of the scratches he has placed on his cheeks and near the corners of his mouth.  He is gurgling tiny words and copying me as I turning my lips into the shape of an "o".  This is not the boy that I just birthed.  This is not the tiny helpless human being that I held in my arms two days ago.  He has changed so quickly and I can hardly keep up.

With Scarlett I hung on every day wondering when she would come upon her next milestone. Worried that she wasn't moving fast enough.  I waited anxiously for her to roll over, to scoot across the floor and army crawl around the living room.  With Dominic I would not be surprised if I came home from work one day and he was in the kitchen making me dinner.  Time is going so fast and my little boy is  going with it.  He is still just barely three months old, but where did it go?  He is already reaching for the world around him, bringing his hands cautiously to his tiny mouth.  He is already scooting around in his crib, turning himself around from one end of the mattress to the other.  He cries with purpose, not just to experiment with his new found voice. 

I suppose this is the nature of life, the nature of motherhood, the nature of growing older.  As we grow, so does the world around us.  As we grow time continues to slip away.  If anything I want this ever speeding time to make me wiser, to teach me to look closer, to cherish longer, to hold onto the things that are steadfast, the things that will keep me grounded.  To hold onto to the deep love that I find in my family and the wonder that I see in my children's eyes.

As time goes, as family grows, I learn, I love, I gain.  

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Friday, February 8, 2013

Perfecting our schedule...

Now that I am back at work I only have two days home with Scarlett and Dominic, and these two days are never enough.  I want to fill our time and keep Scarlett busy but still be able to sit still and watch my little boy grow.

So when we are home Dominic spends most of his time here:

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And Scarlett spends most of her time doing this:

The times that we find ourselves at home are few and far between but when we are we have created a routine that is perfect for us.  Scarlett mothers her living baby doll and her doll quickly grows into a little boy and all the while I get to sit back and watch as these two people grow together.

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Thursday, February 7, 2013

sneaky sneaky...

Scarlett snuck into bed with her brother before Chris and I got out of bed one morning.  Before putting her brother into her bedroom we warned her that this was completely off limits.  But it was still so cute that I had to snap a couple of pictures and then proceed to tell her that it was not allowed. 

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Wednesday, February 6, 2013

Three months...

Happy three months to you my sweet baby boy.

You still spend most of the day, eyes closed, clinging tight to your giraffe blanket. Your smiles are contagious and your coos are incredibly charming.

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Your favorite toy is Sophie the Giraffe, her squeaks immediately calm your fussy inclinations.

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Your sister used to be constantly aware of her surroundings, both fighting for attention but shying away from the attention that she received.  You on the other hand show signs of complete contentment, never asking for more than you need, but completely basking in what you receive.

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You furrow your brow just like your father, as if you are always deep in thought.  I love this about you.  Although you look like my side of the family you are very obviously your fathers son.  You act as if the only thing you truly desire is to be known. On the days that I read these desires and anticipate your needs, everything is perfect, not one cry escapes your lips.

You fall asleep on your own,(contrary to your sister), butt in the air, cuddled against the sheets that surround you, and when I am afforded the luxury, I watch you breath, a soft peaceful beat.

You have blessed us these past three months more than you will ever know, and maybe even more than I will ever realize.  You are the perfect God given addition to our little family of four.

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We love you a bushel and a peck.

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Tuesday, February 5, 2013

Photography by Scarlett...

I sometimes let Scarlett use the special camera and she sometimes dresses herself like an adult and takes pictures with it.

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And surprisingly good pictures...

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Monday, February 4, 2013

Saturday boxing match...

Scarlett was a little out of her weight class, but took the competition as a challenge.  Make sure you watch till the end to see who wins.

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Saturday, February 2, 2013

Future diva...

Scarlett spent a sick day with daddy last week and she showed her true colors at the La Habra Kids Museum.
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