Tuesday, April 29, 2014


Tears are streaming down my face right now.  I have an hour before I have to pick the girls up from school.  I feel the need to write.

This morning as I dropped Louise off (we'd already dropped Ainsley off at her room) her May calendar for school was sitting in her cubby.  I grabbed it, along with her sparkly cowgirl boots, walked her hand in hand up to the playground, gave her curly head a kiss, and headed home with Felix on my back.

I put Felix down for his nap and looked at the calendar.  Three weeks left.  It sent me reeling.

This year has been THE year with my three little people.  Two in preschool, one at home with me.  It's my perfect version of life.

Four mornings a week my girls get to go to the best place I can imagine.  A school filled with incredible teachers, imaginative clever curriculum, safety and learning and fun.  My Felix boy snoozed and I get a few hours to myself, to exercise, to tidy, to cook, to cry too, apparently.
Our afternoons are the best.  Time to to whatever we want as a family.  Cooking and baking, crafting, singing, dancing, going to libraries and parks, the conservatory too.  Or we all  nap, stay in jammies until bedtime, pop popcorn and watch a movie or make a big fort and just tumble over each other on the rug all afternoon long.

Next year it'll all change.  Ainsley will be in kindergarten.  My first baby will be gone all day long all week long.
I can hardly type that without sobs.  Does anyone else feel this way?  I feel like all I see are parents so happy and eager for their children to grow.  So excited for school for them.  I can't make myself feel it.  I just want to wrap her up in my arms and never let her go.

I know that's not true, that I'm not the only one.  I know that all parents feel these growing pains.  But my job is my kids, handing Ainsley's care during the day time over to someone I don't even know yet just feels wrong.

I went back and found this post just now.  At first it made me cry harder, oh do I remember those tiny pink sneakers and that garage sale stripey dress that she wanted to wear every single day.
I remember that day so well.  It was our first time going to the big elementary school park up the street.  Ainsley of course went straight for the scariest obstacle, a twisty rainbow climber WAY above my head.  I had Louise in the carrier and knew I couldn't catch her if she fell, though I pretended to spot her with my hand anyways.  She was so determined, I decided to let her go.  And she did it.  Over and over again.

I hate letting go. It's gives me panic and heart palpitations.  I crave control and order and knowing what to expect.  Right now my life has none of that.  It is the hardest thing I've ever experienced.

I can handle being uncertain about somethings, I realize what's really getting to me is not being able to prepare Ainsley for next year.  Not knowing what that looks like for her yet.  In preschool you can just walk up the hall to your new class, go to school with friends you've known your whole little life with smiling teachers that you already know.  In kindergarten it's all new and big and scary.  Why do we do that to tiny people?  I so wish kindergarten was only a half day.  I so wish we could afford to send Ainsley to The Children's School.  I wish so many things right now.

For me right now this is the hardest thing about parenting. Putting aside how I feel to do what I know my girl needs.  She is ready for full day school, is bouncing off these walls all day, so eager to learn and make friends and grow.  It is I that am not ready.  It is me that cries over baby photos of her and remembers when she needed me so much.  It is breaking my heart.  It's this realization that my children will continue to break my heart that's getting me down right now.  I don't know how to let them go.

Perhaps I don't.  Perhaps I let them let me go when they're ready.  Perhaps I just hold on as tight as they'll let me for as long as I can.  Perhaps I cry while they're at school and look at baby photos and drink too much coffee, then put a cold cloth on my eyes and a smile on my face and pick them up from school.  Then maybe I forgo any plans that I had for this afternoon and follow their lead.  Sit on the floor of their messy room and dress up dolls with them and play pretend.  Perhaps I just immerse myself in their lives each moment that I can and savor it all, because it is all changing, much too fast for my liking.  I already miss what I have now.  I best give it an extra hug today.

Saturday, April 26, 2014

Killer Day

Oh man today was full.

All week I've been in major spring cleaning mode, taking my full 2.5 hours of preschool Felix napping time to scour one room at a time.  First Ian's an my room, then the girls, and so on and so on.  Bit by bit these house is growing immaculate.  I'm loving it.

Then last night I lost my marbles after I came down from a 20 minute bath and the living room was a complete mess.  You win some you lose some.

Today Ian and I (and the kids somehow) joined forces and we had a rare day of total progress.  Behold.

 Ainsley had a birthday party today (2.5 hours, glorious!) allowing us the time we needed to really crank some things out while Felix napped.  We went to home depot first thing this morning for paint a plants among other things.  I FINALLY planted our tiny street corner patch.  It's been half dead filled with weeds all 4.5 years we've lived here.  I also finally found something to replace the sorry boxwood I dug up from our front garden.  A bright yellow forsythia.  I love the yellow coupled with the purple and maroon of the other plants I planted.  I wish I'd taken a photo in the morning sun.  It really is brilliant. Ian painted both the front and back steps today.  I managed to rake and weed our entire yard and re-fence the vegetable patch, which is already sprouting lettuce, beans, and spinach! I also cleaned out under the deck which was quite the feat.  Ah accomplishment.

I picked Ainsley up from her party and we stopped in the arts district to check out a new consignment shop (meh) and grab a coffee for me.  I decided last minute to run into Majamas to see if they had any good sales on their adorable baby clothes.  I snagged a new pair of my favorite pants for Felix (zutano!).  The coffee refueled me for the rest of the day and it was so fun to have a tiny outing with my big princess girl (you should have seen the looks and smiles she got from passersby, she felt oh so fancy).

In the afternoon Louise and Felix enjoyed the fresh sand in the table and then we enjoyed a brief walk with the push car and trike I unearthed from under the deck.  Felix LOVED the car.  I'm excited to have a new mode of transportation for him.

Then Ian took all three kids to the park and I took a 5pm bath (with wine!).  I came down to them watching Frozen (because what else do you do at the end of a crazy full day?) and made dinner (pan seared pork chops with sweets and greens).  Now the kids are tucked in, I'm enjoying a cup of tea and very much looking forward to not feeling like I need to do anything in particular tomorrow.  Except laundry.  There's ALWAYS laundry.

Ah.  Hoping you all had a wonderful Saturday.

Oh!  And did I mention Felix is walking?!?!!!! Well, 4-5 steps all day long.  It's pretty darn exciting.

Friday, April 25, 2014

Felix the boy

Six years ago I wasn't a parent at all.  I had just found out that I was pregnant with Ainsley.  I was working as an aide in a kindergarten class at an amazing progressive child centered elementary school.  I was abuzz with anticipation and joy.  How was I possibly going to be able to wait 8 more months to meet my first little baby?

Six years later, my third baby is turning one.

It's easy to get caught up in milestones with little ones running around all day.  First smile! First tooth!  First real crawl! First words!  FIRST STEPS!!!!  I've done a terrible job keeping track of these big firsts with our third baby.  Poor Felix's baby book is nearly empty.  There just has not been time, or more truthfully, it's not been a priority for me anymore.

My little people are changing so fast, to spend too much time agonizing over it, documenting it, only means I'm missing out more.  So with this little guy, my third tiny baby, I've been soaking it all in.

Felix boy, I will never ever forget the day that you were born.  Your birth was a dream come true for me, your whole pregnancy, really.  When I found out I was pregnant for the third time I secretly hoped for a boy.  I planned for your arrival meticulously, made you oodles of things, dreamt and prayed and imagined who you would be.  Then you came.  So easily into this world, into my arms.  You were born.  "It's a boy!" Your dad declared.  "It's Felix!" I replied.  We cried.  I just stared at you in awe.  I'm still in awe that you are here.  My little boy.

The past year has simply flown.  You have been such a wonderful little baby.  You tolerate your sister's adoration of you quite well, and all the toting around you must endure.  You are growing up so much, especially these last few months.  You want to be a part of whatever we're doing, you scream loudly to pipe in, you sing, you dance, you move so very fast, you stand up with no hands and have taken just a few tentative steps.  You are finally sleeping all the way through the night, have given up your pacifier entirely, still love a good bottle but are happy with milk in a cup now too.  You have been all done nursing for about two months.  I was very sad about it at first, but it's fitting that my big guy is ready to be done.  You can be quite stoic and remind me SO much of your dad in temperament and personality.  I can still get a good belly laugh out of you with a good under the chin tickle or a rousing round of chase on all fours.  You are still so snuggly and are happy on my left hip or nestled right under my chin.  When we're playing on the floor you often come find me, just to flop down on my tummy.  I love that I'm still your home base, you need me around.  I need you too my little guy.

Today on your first birthday I remember your birth.  I remember those first awe soaked days of snuggles and spring breezes and sweet newborn you.  I remember you growing and learning and seamlessly fitting into our cooky family.  I remember how much you are loved, by all of us, how your sisters have shown not one bit of malice towards you since the day you arrived.  You were made for us little guy.  Today I remember how lucky were are to have you and how excited we are to see you grow.

Happy first birthday little Buboo!  We couldn't love you more.