He still calls him Daddy❤

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We were stuck in traffic…in grid lock trying to cross the causeway from the city to our little town, it was way past supper, it was hot….and we were late, but the kids were happy…there was a sense of calm in the minivan…it was unusual.

It was only Tuesday and the week had already thrown us a few hard punches…one of which was a broken jeep… not worth repairing…..our 2nd vehicle… the one my husband uses so that he can come and go as he pleases without taking 3 young kids with him wherever he goes.

We were on our way back home from picking my husband up at work…nearing the end of supper time rush hour traffic…there was an accident, and here we found ourselves at a stand still. This is typically witching hour in our house, everyone is usually tired and hangry but today it was anything but. My husband, ever the optimist, commented that even though we were stuck, hot, hungry and now late for my son’s baseball practice, at least we were safe and we were not the ones in the accident, if we thought our week was bad the unfortunate people in the accident have had an even worse week.

Shortly after he made this comment IT HAPPENED …the van fell silent…this is abnormal with 3 talkative kids, all constantly striving for our attention. In the midst of the silence our maturing 8 year old softly said “Daddy” in the sweetest voice, full of enthusiasm he began telling his father about something that happened at school earlier that day.

I didn’t hear the story, I was too busy thinking about “daddy”.. the way he said it, the innocence in his voice, the excitement I could hear….the love I could sense in just the way he said “Daddy”….then I wondered how much longer this would last…how much longer he would call him daddy?

My husband works long hours and unfortunately gets to spend little time with our children….I’m their primary go to…their constant…their chef…their chauffeur…their complaints department, their bouncer, their enforcer of all rules…so it’s rare now for my son to call me “mommy”….Sadly, I’ve been upgraded to “Mom!”

I love watching our son grow up, I love all of the first milestones, I love that he is gaining independence, I love who he is becoming….but most of all, right in that moment, I loved that he was still a little boy-no longer a toddler but not yet a pre-teen, he was still excited to spend time with and share is day with his father…

I love that he still calls him Daddy❤

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Are You Happy?

She had been sitting on the bottom step of a handmade spiraling staircase in a rustic old farmhouse now used as a summer cottage….she was warned not to go higher on those twisty steps but rather to sit there and eat her lunch. Surrounded by other kids and moms and dads, enjoying a late spring getaway to the Island….while the adults stood about the quaint kitchen talking, baby sprawled out on the floor and the boys circled around the table eating their lunch…..

HOPE- sat quietly on the bottom step…where she had been told, eating her crackers, her lunch…taking it all in…every single word. And while the adults were distracted by their conversations on life… she was being pulled away by the giggles of pre- teen girls at the top of those spirally stairs….the stairs she had been warned not to climb.

She carefully decided to see what would happen if quietly, slyly she slid her bum up into the next rung….and when she succeeded without falling or getting caught she slowly made her way up to the third rung…and then the fourth, fifth…and ever so cautiously & quietly..making her way to the very top ..one rung at a time… until she was there ..at the top with those giggly pre-teens. …And just before she stood up to run off with those silly girls….she peered down…now eye to eye with me, her mom, with her demanding voice and sheepish grin, she asked…

“Are you Happy?”

This is her question to me always… right after she’s has done something she was asked not to do…..Right after she’s pushed every ounce of patience I have left….Are you Happy?

Really what she wants to know is if I am angry or upset with her ….constantly seeking a reaction from me….I hesitated, analyzing my response.

Was I happy that she did not do as she was asked… no…but I was happy.

Happy that she made it to the top safely❤

Happy that she was having fun❤

Happy that she dares to push the boundaries❤

Happy that she is always smiling❤

Happy that she is such a free spirit❤

Happy that she took a risk❤

Happy that she’s teaching me everyday …my role as a parent is not to control her every move but to let go and and give her room to gain confidence in herself❤

Happy that we have been blessed with her big presence in our lives❤

Happy to let her be just who she is❤

“Yes Hopee, I’m Happy”

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Let her go❤

She wanted to go so badly with her brother and father to softball, it was her bed time…..but I let her go. She’s a bit of a free spirit, structured schedules are key….mainly for us, it makes the nights with her go smoother….but I let her go.

After they had been gone a while I sent her dad a text asking how she was doing. He replied with this picture and a caption that said she found a puddle….and he let her go. Oh no I thought, what a mess she will be.

A day later I find myself looking at the picture again and again…It has become one of my favorites so far.

I wonder what she’s thinking..
I wonder what she’s sees…
I wonder what she’s hearing..
I wonder what she’s feeling..
I wonder what she’s saying, I know she must be talking…..
I wonder what memories she’s making..

And then I remind myself that more and more I need to let my wild child go …..so she can remain the free spirit she was born to be❤2259_1524330025463

Someday I’ll Tell My Children

My husband works on the weekends and those days seem very long, especially when they are not broken up by daycare, school, playdates, birthday parties and extra curricular activities…..today was particularly longer than most. Perhaps it was becasue I was more tired than normal, after benefitting from a much needed late night out – nourishing my soul with wonderful friends, perhaps it was because they all seemed more demanding than normal-my kids not my friends❤, or pehaps it was just a bad day. No, seemed to be the word of choice for all of us today. The two that can talk made it very clear their friends have better moms than they do and that life in our little green house is not fair…but as usual when it comes to bed time, all they want is mom and all the hurts of the day fall away….❤❤❤

Someday I’ll Tell My Children

Happy Hour❤

My new meaning of
HAPPY HOUR….
It’s March Break in my world. When I am at work, I love this week. Typically my children would go to daycare, my husband would be at work and I would rest, have lunch dates with my non travelling friends, spend a day at the spa, enjoy a much anticipated massage, read, rejuvenate and indulge in a week of self-care. While on Mat Leave, March Break has become a reminder that we are in the trenches of parenthood….
My Facebook feed is lit up this week with pictures of my friends on ski trips with their teenage children, one couple is off on a romantic getaway in Hawaii sans enfants, good friends are escapading throughout Italy, one in Australia, while others are enjoying Happy Hour somewhere sunny and warm… Florida, Cuba, Mexico….etc…and some are even posting about loving their time with a new grandchild -Yes, that’s right we have friends our age with grandchildren, you see we are older parents of very young children. Officially sandwiched between young offspring and an elderly parent. We are in the trenches and some days it feels like we will never get out….but then this happens……

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That blissful hour between 8pm and 9pm, where they are all asleep and I still have just enough energy to take a bath, read a book, watch a home fix up show with my husband and just take a minute to breathe. Often I find myself roaming into each one of my children’s rooms, taking in the sound of their sleeping breath, their smell and that feeling….that feeling of overwhelming love. In that very moment every parenthood struggle that has happened in the past twenty-four hours washes away, the 8 year olds hurt feelings over something a friend said or did, the 2 year olds numerous temper tantrums about who knows what, or the never ending feeds and poopy diapers that comes with a new baby, in that very moment it’s all forgotten…… In that very moment there is nowhere else I want to be……. My New Happy Hour❤

Simple,Blissful…..Family Day❤

                                                     The simplicity of Family Day………..

As I sat in the overheated, smelly and noise filled Playplace at MacDonalds’, reflecting on the conversation I had just had and looking around at all the families, I had a sense of bliss wash over me. Our busy little family had sat in the back corner wedged between the bathroom and garbage can, where the sun rays were beaming in like headlights, almost blinding. Our choice of seats was not by choice but rather luck, as the Playplace was packed full of screaming kids, and we were glad to snag a spot. Our 2 year old and 8 year old had run off to play, the baby was content in her car seat, my husband was off to get the food and I was left to soak it all in.

We had just arrived from a long walk through a local nature park and the kids were hungry. Of course, when asked where they wanted to eat, the two older both declared MacDonald’s. While this was not the preferred restaurant for my husband and I….we agreed that they got to choose….after all it was Family Day. In fact, it was our first Family Day, the first time our province has given us…. a statutory holiday mid-February and it was just what our busy family needed.

So while my husband was off getting the food and the kids were off playing, I was taking it all in, when one of the workers came over to change the overflowing garbage can and struck up a conversation. The typical beautiful day isn’t it, I commented on how busy it was… she replied yes, because of the holiday and we both agreed that it was a nice treat to have this holiday mid-winter. She cooed over the baby, wished me a Happy Family Day and walked away, leaving me to reflect on our conversation, what I was observing and what I was feeling.

Family Day seemed different, looked different, felt different then all the other holidays. I was truly enjoying the day and my kids were at peace, my husband and I were at peace and everyone around me in the crowded, smelly noise filled Playplace appeared to be just as peaceful and content as I and then I realized why…..

Family Day was different..…then Easter, Thanksgiving, then Christmas and New Year’s because ……it was our first with…..

• no expectations of how the day would unfold…..
• no expectations to buy the perfect gift or two or three…..
• no expectations to have extended family over for a big meal……
• no expectations to decorate for the holiday….
• no commercialization telling us what we needed to buy, to do, to wear, to have, to make the perfect holiday…….
• NO EXPECTATIONS…………

                                 Just quality time with those we choose to be with.

A simple walk, a simple lunch and the simplicity of quality time with those you love………. pure BLISS❤

The Best Gifts In The World
Are Not In The Material Objects One
Can Buy From The Store,
But In The Memories We Make
With The People We Love
-A.B.