Keely, you are 10 1/2 now. You are 57 inches tall and skinny. You wear glasses now and are trying to let your hair grow out. You are easily embarrassed and very concerned with what other people think of you right now. You are wearing a school uniform right now every day, so we don’t see your fashion flare lately, but occasionally on the weekends you will put together an awesome ensemble. You also will put on lip gloss and perfume. You are into reading Percy Jackson books, playing on your kindle (mine craft, right now), listening to your current favorite music on your shuffle, and making rainbow loom style bracelets.
You can not stand school. It is “the worst place in the whole galaxy” and can’t wait to be a grown up so you can “do whatever you want”. You do not like any of your teachers and homework makes you so angry. You stay after school sometimes to get extra math help because you do not want to fail and have to go to summer school. You wake up as early as possible so that you can get to school super early. You are worried about being late. As soon as we get home we have to sit down and complete all of the homework before anything else can happen. It is not a fun routine. You stress out a lot about school.
You are fitting in now more with your classmates. You get along with most of them and have a circle of friends. You have a couple of girls that you hang out with the most. You still are best friends with Isis, from your old school too. You write each other letters every week and try to get together on the weekends to visit. You say you want to be like everyone else, so you won’t do anything that you don’t know for sure that your peers are not doing. It drives me insane. I hope that passes soon. You have low self-esteem and it breaks my heart. No matter what we do to try and build you up, you still think you are not smart, not pretty, not good at anything. I hope this is just a temporary thing that you are going through. You have some difficulties learning new skills, practicing, and with anything that requires memorization and that really stresses you out and makes you feel bad. We are trying to get you some help in those areas right now.
You are incredibly funny, witty, and creative. You can write a poem in two seconds. You can make up the best creative stories with no problem. You can read at a 8th-9th grade level. You LOVE animals and are super protective of them. You took horse back riding lessons with Grandpa Don this winter and did really well. You have a natural way with animals. You also still love being outside. Walking in the ocean, picking flowers, riding your bike -all bring your peace. You also love to sleep in your sleeping bag and sleep in as late as possible on the weekends.
You like me this year which is nice. You want to be with me and talk to me and gossip about school. I hope that continues. You’re quite good at imitating your teachers. You do get really mad at me for not letting you do things that “every other kid gets to do”. You will bring up the list of current things several times a week and get so mad at me. Right now your complaints are that: I won’t let you have a cell phone, watch horror movies or The Hunger Games, or ride your bike alone through the neighborhood. I’m sticking to my guns on all of those for this year.
Next year you are begging me to home school you and we just can’t decide what is best for you. I have no idea what we are going to do. You are really looking forward to summer break though. I hope we can start getting outside more now that the weather is warming up and plan some nice summer activities to unwind from a stressful school year.
I love you my Keely. I will always be on your side and be here for you. I hope you just be true to yourself, follow your own path, and look for the good in yourself and the world. You’re always my baby girl. xoxo
April 10, 2014
My littlest last baby is not a baby anymore. Lucas you are three. We can’t believe it. I remember holding you the moment you were born and you and I spending our first night alone together. You were so perfect…tiny, beautiful, and so calm. Now you are so big, funny, loud, capable and really adorable.
You keep our house busy son. You are so full of energy and noise. You make all your demands known and all your grievances. You still have the loudest scream. You have perfected the angry screech. You also have the most wonderful giggly laugh too though. I have to stop whatever I am doing when I hear you laugh, just to savor the sound. It really is like the perfect music. It sometimes makes my eyes tear up because I’m so thankful that you have that feeling of joy and you can express it so easily and fully. You laugh at Milo’s games with you and especially when you see animals doing something entertaining. You can laugh for a such a long stretch that you don’t even take a breath and you look like you might fall over. You better keep that wonderful giggle baby boy.
You sleep next to me every night still and I treasure our warm cuddles and the lingering special baby smell of you. I know these days are numbered. You take one nap a day now and sometimes you go up to your room willingly and other days you kick and scream or you insist on bringing a toy that you loudly play with instead of falling asleep. You wake up pretty early in the morning and drag your blanket to the top of the stairs and repeat, “mooooommy” in a zombie voice until I come and rescue you. We sit together for awhile before you are ready to actually be awake.
During most days you play with Milo and by yourself. You ride you scoot bike through the house, dump toys all over the place, draw, read books, build things with your Legos, and go to your room alone a few times to play. Your favorite toys are a few of your matchbox cars, Lego stormtroopers on Lego horses, and trains (especially one Thomas the Train). You always have one of those in your hand. You love to take the toy stroller and fill it to capacity with lego bricks or matchbox cars. Then you push them crazily through the house. You like to be held and carried still as much as you like to run and climb everywhere. Your favorite books are: Go Dog, Go and Goodnight Moon. You just started singing with me and will sing by yourself too. My heart explodes when it hears your tiny song voice. Itsy Bitsy Spider and ABC’s are your biggest hits.
You like mealtimes- although you have gotten much pickier about what you will eat. Butter bread, yogurt, baked beans, noodles, and rice are your most requested foods now. If something is deemed “yucky” by you now, you will throw the full bowl across the table or on the floor. It is lovely. We tell you that it is not okay to do that and you always replay, “Whhhhhhhy?” We try to get you to help clean it up and you will eventually say, “Oh, fine” and help. You say lots of humorous things. When you want to do something that we have said no to you say, “I’m allowed to…..”. “I’m allowed to draw on the chairs.” “I’m allowed to chase the cats.” Then in your sweet moments you say, “I really do LOVE you…uh, huh. I do!” If I (or anyone else) leaves the house-you say, “I think I lost mommy”. You say it in such a sad voice too. If you think someone isn’t being kind you say, “HEY! You tryin’ to be mean!” When we drive fast in the car you say, “Whoa! nice run daddy!” The post office is called, “the purple dolpey” and every rabbit is called a “happy bunny”. Love them all and I’m keeping most of them as part of my vocabulary forever and ever.
You loved to play with Milo and are so happy when he lets you into his big kid game. You get bored quick and want to do your own thing though. You are pretty good at entertaining yourself with your toys and sometimes just with your hands. You hands talk and jump and have lots of noisy battles. When your energy does start to wane, you start moaning and saying, “I tooooo heavy.” Usually that means you are tired. You only take one short nap a day around 2 o’clock.
When you are feeling tired or upset you twirl your hair. You always have a piece of hair sticking out because of it.
You like for us to go places and almost everyday want us to go out. “So, where we going today?” When the weather is decent, going outside to play or take a walk is good enough for you. You love running and swinging and finding rocks. You like watching squirrels and birds and you always let me know when the sunshine is out and when it isn’t. On cloudy days or in the evening, you come running to me and say, “She took your sunshine!” I don’t know who she is, but you let me know that I don’t need to worry because MY sunshine will be coming back.
You are a pretty awesome little guy. You have a giant personality. You say the cutest things and you have some of the most wonderful mannerisms and expressions. You keep me on my toes and always make me smile. We are so lucky that you are ours Lucas. Happy Third Year baby! I love you always.
February 27, 2014
Milo, you have reached six. It is so hard to get used to my babies aging. You are all still little to me. Six seems so big kid, but in my mind you are my little cuddly moo-moo. I see photos of you when you were 2 or 3 and in mind, that is how you still look. Then, I realize you are so different in reality. Your legs have grown so long and some of the baby-ness has left your little face. Thankfully, you have not lost your desire to cuddle or that sweetness that is so you.
This year you have matured a lot. You play by yourself for long periods of time and usually can entertain yourself. You love Legos. It is the only thing you play with and you build really awesome stuff. You have a great creative mind and you can figure out anything that you want to. You also adore our kittens. You would be so happy if they (and we) would let you carry them around all day and night. You love to be loved on and have someone cuddle you. If they don’t want to be with you, you take it very personally. You think, “they don’t like me and they’ll never let me hold them again. Not ever.” Your feelings are so easily hurt and tears quickly follow sadness and anger for you. You stay very mad for about 30 minutes before you will let us reach out to you and love on you to bring you back around. Then you are ready for hugs and moving on with your day.
We are doing homeschool officially this year. We did it last year some, but now it is kindergarten work and it is daily for us. You are doing so good. You are reading and you seem to really enjoy being able to write. You write notes to us constantly. You like writing on itty-bitty scraps of paper in the smallest of letters too. You often write notes that say, “I love you. Be Happy. Enjoy. Love, Milo” So sweet. We also work on speech daily and you have progressed so far. You catch yourself often and correct your pronunciation on your own. You also talk non stop. You follow me room to room talking, talking, talking. Upstairs, downstairs, to the bathroom door, outside, getting in the car, driving, walking through the store. You can go and go. You have so much to say and ask.
I don’t know what the future holds for us in schooling, but for now having you at home is working out. You never want to go to public school because of listening to your sister complain about it. You think it just may be the worst place on earth. I have offered to take you to classes or get you involved with groups so that you could be around other boys your age, but you want nothing to do with it. You are perfectly content to just be with your family for now. You tell me almost daily that your best, most important, or favorite thing in the whole world is your family. Then next is your pets, then your house and then your Legos. You’re good like that.
Milo and Lucas. Lucas and Milo. We three are together, mostly at home, all day and night. Lucas pretty much drives you bonkers. You try to play with him, but he does not follow your game rules and usually just grabs, breaks, throws, or yells. You have given him one Lego Storm Trooper, and one Light Saber that he is allowed to do with what he wants. That mostly pleases him. He copies everything you do and really looks up to you. If he ever is sad or hurt you are right there at his side to comfort him. You will fix his broken toys and help him find things that he’s lost too. You do often try to trick him to get him away from things that you want though too. I guess you have a dose of typical older sibling in there too though. You love to run, scream, and jump like crazy men together. He loves when you play that stuff with him. I often find you two cuddled up together, looking at a book or holding a cat.
Keely and you don’t have much in common right now. You look up to her and are still sweet to her, but she pulls a tweenager attitude towards you and it hurts your feelings and then you two are at war. The weekends are the only time you two seem to find some moments of niceness together. I guess that is pretty normal for brothers and sisters who are over 4 years apart. She is jealous of you that you get to stay home in the day and she doesn’t and that you don’t have the oodles of homework that she does. That has not been good for your relationship.
You love technology games and beg to play on a phone or computer everyday. Currently, you are into Minecraft. You can really figure out any game on your own. I have no idea how even get started in those games. I’m always impressed with your capabilities. I can’t wait to see what you become when you grow up… but not just yet, of course. I have to keep you little for much longer.
You really still love nature and always come running when I tell you about the events in our yard: the morning glories have turned to seed, the squirrels are building nests, the Dogwoods have buds, Jupiter is out tonight, etc. I’m so happy that you care. I try to teach about whatever you are interested in. Each week we pick a subject/topic/interest and try to fit it in to our school time. We’ve been through lots of bugs and nature topics so far.
You are still a pretty particular eater. I think you’ve only added 5 new foods to your diet this year. You are seemingly healthy and growing fine though, so I guess you are o.k. We keep encouraging new foods and you are better about at least trying them. So, here’s to at least 5 more foods this year!
Pajamas are your clothes of choice. You get very annoyed that we change clothes every morning and night. “Why do we have to do this every.day. Why?” However, when allowed to pick out your own clothes at the store-you pick out pretty snazzy button down dress shirts. I had no idea you would want to wear that style, but you think they look nice and they feel fine to you. I love that you have your own style already.
You are pretty much a homebody, like your mother. You like to go on little family outings, but mostly you rather be at home doing your own thing. I get it. I just want you to know there is a whole, big world out there full of beautiful things and I want you to experience and see as many as you can. Take all the good stuff you find and make it part of you. Your home and your family will always be here waiting for you when you get back.
I love you my sweet little Milo. You are my best Milo. You are always snug in my heart. Happy sixth birthday.
December 3, 2013
We have arrived at the double digits my baby girl. You are now a ten year old young lady. Sometimes out of the corner of my eye, I catch a glimpse of the lady you will become . When you are sad though, I can still see my little baby in your big eyes and pretty face. Now we get to navigate 10 together.
You finished up fourth grade with a wonderful honor roll report card. You even got a B in math! You stayed friends with Isis, but she was really your only close friend. There were a few mean girls in your class who made many days very upsetting for you. Summer couldn’t come fast enough. Of course, once summer arrived you didn’t know what to do with yourself for a few weeks. Suddenly having free time again is confusing. We took lots of little day trips and made a lot of outings. We got down a summer groove and a loose daily schedule. The pool got up and you spent hours in it. You so love being in the water. You alternate between swimming and floating calmly to splashing and screaming frantically in it. You made tons of smoothies in the magic bullet and watched a lot of Scooby Doo with your brothers. You started spending time with Milo and including him in things. You also spent a ton of time fighting with him. Lucas just follows you both around and watches and gets into your things. Lucas started coming to you for comfort more when he was upset or hurt. You love that. You love when he wraps his arms around you and wants you to carry him.
You play and read on your favorite “toy”- your purple cased Kindle. Daddy bought it for you at the end of the school year as a reward for doing so well. We couldn’t keep you off that thing at first, but now you’ve moderated your time on it. You still prefer to have “real” copies of your favorite books. You like to reread them and have the collections on your bookshelves. You don’t play with any kid toys now. I think you played with your Barbies 3 times this summer and that is it. You spend time sorting through you collections of key chains and jewelry. Sometimes you clean up your clothes or rearrange the tops of your shelves and dresser. You make your bed every morning and put your things away. Your room stays pretty clean except for papers and actual trash that you will just throw on the floor and leave.
At night, you stay up very late reading in your room. I often have to come up and tell you lights out because I am going to bed. When I come up to tell you goodnight, you try to keep me in your room by talking and asking questions. It takes me about a half hour to leave. You’re a chatty and silly thing most evenings, but I usually hang out with you since we don’t get much brother-free time in the day. You seem to really want and need that. You’ve become a lot less sensitive to clothing this year and you’ve not had quite as many full of melt downs. They still come around, but not nearly as often.
This year I’ve heard you make many observations about your environment and how it makes you feel. Usually it is something about nature. You’ll tell me you love the sound of the leaves rustling in the trees or the sound of the rapids in the rivers. “Oh mommy, you have to come and see the moon tonight. It is so beautiful. Like magic.” If it is raining you will try to sneak outside without your brothers, so that you can sit under a tree and listen and feel it all around you. It is so reassuring to me that you are aware of those things and that they bring you peace and make you feel happy, yet calm. When you see pretty things outside you command me to come and take a photo of it and if I don’t act fast enough, you snag my camera and take a picture yourself. I find many photos of things you’ve captured on my phone, mostly of nature things, but sometimes of self portrait goofy faces or of you and your brothers being silly.
You still watch for fairies in our yard and are certain that they live in an old tree we have. You say you have seen glistening sparkles there many times. You want there to magic in your world so badly.
For your birthday, you had a lunch date with Isis and went swimming together. Then, on your real birthday, you took cupcakes to school and we picked you up with helium balloons. You still really love balloons. We waited to do your family party until after school started so your grandmothers could be here. You chose a white and pink color theme and requested money, jewelry, and a bike. You received all of that. You also got tons of girly things….like body sprays and washes, lip gloss and nail accessories. Our whole upstairs smells like a tweenager now. You so love using all those products and accessorizing your outfits with jewelry, scarves, and headbands. You also finally got your bike and could right it as soon as you got on it. Such freedom. We don’t really have a neighborhood that’s good for bike riding so we’ve held off for years, knowing we couldn’t safely just let you go off alone riding your bike. Now you beg us everyday to wander the hood with you so you can zoom around while we race to keep our eye on you. Ugh. Overprotective parenting is so over rated.
At the end of the summer, we started school shopping for 5th grade and your anxiety kicked it. You really didn’t want to go back to your old school because of all the mean kids. We know homeschool isn’t right for you because you like to be around other girls (nice ones) your age, so we started searching around for alternatives the last week of summer break. We ended up going to a Catholic school, taking a tour, and signed you up the next day. The next 3 days were filled with getting uniforms and supplies because they had already started school. We all took you to school for your first day and I walked you to your class and left you all alone with you big, scared eyes. I could barely make it out of the building before bawling like a baby. I felt so bad leaving you in such a new, strange place. Everyone at the school has been together for all the grades. It is just one class per grade and they all move up together to the next grade. They all know each other well and the school. You are such an outsider right now. I was so stressed and worried for you. Over the next couple of weeks you did alright. The school is very different and there’s lots we don’t understand yet. They write in cursive-all the kids and the teachers do on the board- and our public schools don’t teach cursive, so that is a huge problem for you since you can’t read anything the teacher is writing. We get to practice that in addition to all the homework each night. You like the students and the daily schedule of changing classes there, but you do not like the work and for that reason you have decided that you just want to stay home and school is awful and please don’t make me go back ever is what we hear each night along with crying. I hope you settle in and things get easier for you soon because I just don’t know what other options we have right now.
I love you my tall, beautiful, smart, funny, witty, daughter. You are growing up so fast and I miss the little you, but I am hopeful that the young lady you will become is going to be just awesome. I know life and rules are so hard for you sometimes and all of your struggles really weigh you down, but we are always here for you. We want you to be happy and enjoy your life now and as you grow up. We will always do everything we can to help you. Just be kind, be honest, and do your best. I love you so much Keely. Happy 10th birthday.
September 17, 2013
July 31, 2013
Our neighbors had one of the oldest trees in the neighborhood in their yard. It was close enough and large enough to us though that it felt like ours. It was our favorite thing about our space. It was an enormous tree that provided lots of shade, interest, and coziness. One day half of the tree just spit and fell into all the neighboring yards. It was a mess and started a mass butchering off all the trees it damaged. Now our space is so bright and empty! The sun is blazing on us all day and our old house lot is looking more like a plot in a new treeless neighborhood. So sad. We were all pretty bummed about, but one day when all the tree cutters were chainsawing and grinding away, Milo said, “Well, I am very sad about this but I think we shouldn’t be too sad because soon we will get used to it not being there and there will be something good about it being gone I think- like we can see more of the pretty blue sky now.” Wise little man.
July 29, 2013
July 18, 2013
We decided since we aren’t taking any “real” vacations this year, that once a week we would play tourist at a local place or neighboring city. We’ve kept to the plan pretty well so far. We usually make it about 2-3 hours and then all the children fall apart in various ways and we call it quits. I try to take photos, Ryan tries to corral the children, Lucas runs around and insists on walking everywhere and being very loud, Keely melts down that it is too hot and she may die, Milo asks if we can go home now or eat. Yay! In between the frustrations though, there are moments of nice picturesque family time, learning moments, and pretty places. So, we keep trying.
July 13, 2013
July at our house
July 9, 2013
Hello all! We are busy summering around here. It’s hot and these three babes are noisy and crazy and want to be entertained an awful lot. I’m going to try and start posting here again and maybe even give this old blog a makeover. If all else fails though and anyone here still wants to keep up with us-you can find me on instagram. That’s quick and easy. I can do quick and easy certainly.
July 8, 2013