Posts Tagged With: joy

(an unusual) Baby K weekend – January 2022

Thing 1 called me Wednesday afternoon.
I was checking out after getting my hair did.
Me answering: Let me call you right back.
Her: Uh, OK. But we have a gas leak, can Baby K and I come to your house?
Me: Yes! Why are you even asking. I’ll call you right back.

I called her back asking about Husband N, the dogs and cats. Thing 1 told me she turned off the gas at the tank (their furnace runs on propane) so they could no longer smell gas in the house. Husband N had to stay there for the guy from the propane company to come.
They were more worried about the cold than anything at that point, but we did come up with a plan just in case.

Turns out they simply ran out of gas. Which in itself is a somewhat convoluted story that shouldn’t actually have happened, but not actually relevant to my point.

Thing 1 and Baby K arrived within half an hour of me getting home.
My daughter was frazzled. Her daughter was excited to be at “B-Papa house”.

This weekend was our Baby K weekend.
But our grandgirl arrived Wednesday afternoon and the weekend weather was looking bleak, so I suggested to Thing 1 she go home whenever and we’d bring Baby K home later in the day Saturday to avoid traveling Sunday.
This plan worked for everyone.
Of course Thing 1 wasn’t getting any toddler-free time because she was here too.
Though it was nice to have some time together in our two mommies-two daughters sort of way.

Gas tanks were filled Friday morning.
Closet design appointment was scheduled for eleven Friday. (more on that later)
Thing 1 stayed long enough to get Baby K in bed for her nap before she left.

Baby K was grumpy and sad Friday night and asked to go home several times. (so unlike her) I explained it was too late to go home Friday night, but reassured her we would take her home Saturday morning when she was ready.
Kid woke up all chipper and ready to play!
We ended up taking her home after her nap Saturday afternoon.
She was nearly exploding with joy when we got her home. Not just because she was home with her mom and dad, but because we were all there together with her.
She was super huggy and giggly. She kept saying, “Come here quick, please!” just so we could all see some silly thing she wanted to show or tell us. She told us, “Both of you” or “All of you” a few times too.
Her joy is contagious!

It was a tricky week to be in my daughter’s family.
It was a tricky week for YBW and me, though I think we got the better end of the deal.
Extra Baby K time for both YBW and me.
Unexpected time with my girl for me.

Things will come up.
Plans will change.
It won’t always be the way we hope or expect.
However, we’re lucky enough to be in a situation in which we can make it work together.
That’s the bit I love most!

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organizing my home and brain space

This is the view from our bedroom window this morning.
Can you spot three deer out there in the snow?
I watched them for about ten minutes while they foraged.

Today is snow day number four.
And two to four inches of snow predicted in the overnight hours tonight.
Three full weeks of winter break.
I’m actually ready to get back to school.

Though I’ve been quite productive around here and feel good about it. This additional week was helpful.

I found some good decor items to add with things we already have to style the dining table. I’m being mindful about making sure I have mostly practical pieces that are useful in ways other than simply looking nice. I don’t want decor for decor’s sake. I want beautiful things I can utilize in other ways.
I may end up returning some things, I’m still trying to figure it out.
Photos to come.

I’m actively journaling.
It feels good to get my brain space better sorted. In addition to journaling my thoughts and feels, I’m also writing about writing. My hope is that will eventually translate to this blog.
We’ll see, those thoughts are still hatching…

I’m feeling positive and hopeful about all the things right now.
Inspired and encouraged.
About our home.
About my feels.
I’ll strive to do what’s best for my physical and mental health.
I’ll continue to ask questions that may or may not have answers.
I must consider some serious decisions.
But I’m going to accept what comes as it do.
And I’m going to embrace as much playful fun and joy as I possibly can.

How are all y’all feeling this first week of the new year?
What thoughts are hatching in your brain space?

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present and engaged this Christmas

For the first time I can remember, I didn’t take any photos at Christmas! ​
A tiny part of me is sad there are no photos, but I love that I was completely present and engaged on Christmas Eve when our family was here.
Three of our four kids, their two partners, one mother in law, and our grandgirl came to our new home to celebrate together.
We popped bubbly.
We laughed.
We opened gifts.
I was disappointed Thing 2 and Boyfriend M weren’t with us, but I talked to her for nearly three hours earlier that day, and I know she spoke with her sister too.

I put out the cookies Thing 1, Baby K, and I made.

We ate three different varieties of soup.
We nibbled and talked and told stories. We were content to celebrate together.

Baby K helped me pass out pressies to her parents, uncles, and other grandmother. She enlisted her Papa’s help as she was feeling a bit shy about taking gifts to her uncles and Thing C’s girlfriend.

We all had Christmas Eve gifts of jammies and books.
Our adult kids get gift cards for Christmas, which may seem boring, or even like a cop-out, but it works for our family.
Of course, not being an adult, Baby K gets gifts.
And I can assure you she was all about opening them!
Even though we went to see her Christmas morning, she opened gifts from us while she was here on Christmas Eve.

It was the loveliest Christmas I’ve had in a while and my love and joy were spilling out all over.
I hope all y’all and your families had a wonderful Christmastime.
I wish you all comfort and joy.

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love and joy and cookies

Thing 1 and I baked cookies all day yesterday.

Baby K said, “I help you!” many times.
Of course toddler help looks often looks like her taking cookies off the pan and cramming them in her gob as quickly as we can cut them. (I’m over here like, dude, that’s what scraps are for!)
Or taking a handful of flour and throwing it on the floor while saying, “It’s SNOW!”
Then when her mother unceremoniously removes her from the stool upon which she stands, laying in the flour on the floor and…”I making snow angel!”
(Yeah, we laughed. It was freaking adorable!)
We had a reprieve when her Papa came home from lunch and they sat at the island being all cute while they ate their lunches together.
And again while she napped.

Baking is not my strong suit.
But yesterday, baking with my girl. I was absolutely content.
I enjoyed her company.
I enjoyed working in the kitchen with her.
I enjoyed watching her be her daughter’s mom.

That time was sacred to me and I’m grateful for it.
It wasn’t about the cookies, though most of them turned out beautifully.
It was about the process.
It was about the fellowship.
I know how fortunate I am to live close to my daughter, especially after not for so long.
But more than that, I know how fortunate I am to be close to my daughter.
Love, joy, and gratitude are spilling over in me and out into the world.
I hope y’all can feel it too!

Categories: love | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

merry and bright

Meadowlark Gardens does a Winter Walk of Lights at Christmas time!

I bought tickets and convinced YBW to go.
Initially I thought it would be a fun outing. You know, get all bundled up and walk around the gardens we love lit up at night. A Christmasy date night with my sweetheart.

But then…
But then, I got an idea.
“Then he got an idea. An awful idea. The Grinch got a wonderful awful idea.”
(Not really an awful idea. I’m just committing to the bit.)
I decided we could shoot our Christmas card photo there!
How precious, right?
Can’t you picture it? Two cutie-cutes all bundled up against the cold – festive holiday lights – the perfect holiday vignette.
The photographer in me was all about it.
The lover of all things Christmas in me was all about it.
Turns out, YBW was all about it too. Partly because he thought it could be fun, by mostly because I was enthusiastic about it.

There was a small part of me worried that it might be lame. Concerned I’d drag my husband out in the cold and it wouldn’t be worth it.
But when we got there, I went into full on SQUEE mode!

It was absolutely magical!
I took our photo at least fifty times and narrowed it down to two perfect Christmas card shots.
Mostly I just squeed. And told YBW how much I loved it. And thanked him for coming out in the cold with me.

I was the Christmas spirit.
I was child-like wonder.
I was joy.
I was merry and bright.

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Baby K weekend December 2021

Our grandgirl was busy this weekend, y’all!

Saturday we played in the creek behind our house. That girl loves water! So much so that she dragged me into the middle of the creek before she realized the water was up over her boots!
After dumping out the chilly water and squeezing her wet sock feet, she decided she was better off standing on the shore throwing rocks.

After dinner we watched one of Birdie’s favorite holiday shows!

What you can’t see is her dancing every time they sing about how the Grinch is so mean.

Sunday morning we were up, breakfasted, and ready to roll before nine o’clock. We wanted to take Baby K to see the National Christmas tree. The night before YBW checked on the interwebs that the trees opened at 8:30.
We were like, how perfect! We’ll go first thing before it gets too crowded and be out of the city before lunchtime.
Alas, the universe was all, haha NOPE to us.
When we got to the Ellipse, everything was closed!
I immediately got on google…and this is what I saw.

Y’all, I’ve lived here my entire life (minus eight years) and never ever have the fucking trees been closed on the weekends.
Or in the evenings.
Is this a covid thing?
I don’t even know, but I gotta tell you I was pretty damn salty about it.

It was quite pretty though.
This is the first time in my memory that there are pressies under the tree.
But no trains!
I was disappointed, but Baby K had a blast being in DC!
She was in her buggy at first, but then she decided to walk. Across 17th Street. The kid is a natural at navigating crosswalk signals. (while holding hands with Birdie and Papa, natch)

We went next to Old Town Alexandria.
Our plan to let her walk to her little heart’s content.
Her Papa and I got coffee, she got a great big chocolate chip cookie and off we went down King Street towards the river.
Of course we had to stop at the huge Christmas tree in Market Square at City Hall!
Baby K nommed her cookie, ran through the square, and climbed up and down each set of steps and the ramp on the stage right in front of City Hall.
Sadly, our outing was cut short when she had an accident.
We got her all dried up and put on clean clothes, but her shoes were wet, so it was time to go home.

Where she built with blocks then had pizza and salad for dinner.

Oh! NEWS FLASH!
She doesn’t call me B anymore.
She says Birdie now. Only it sounds like Boo-wie.
So, Baby K’s weekend at ‘Boowie’ and Papa’s house had it’s ups and downs, but being together is what it’s all about.
All the JOY!

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finding the right balance

If you’ve read this blog for any length of time, you know Thanksgiving is absolutely not my thing. But, Thanksgiving is Thing 1’s most favorite holiday. When the our dining table arrived, Thing 1 said, “You know, Momma, our house is really small. And yours is big. And you have that big island and new table. So, if I cooked and cleaned, would you host Thanksgiving?”
Without hesitation I told her yes, I also told her I had to talk with YBW.
I only got as far as “and yours is big” in relaying her question before he said “Yes!”

YBW then reached out to each of our other three kids and invited them for Thanksgiving. And when I say invited, what I mean is he didn’t actually give them a choice as much as he was like, I want you here, please and thank you.
And if you actually knew my husband, you’d know that’s not his typical M.O.
The boys and Girlfriend L are confirmed.
Thing 1, Husband N, and Baby K are confirmed.
YBW’s brother, his wife, and our nephew are also confirmed.
Thing 2 and Boyfriend M cannot be here.

YBW and Thing 1 are planning to do all the work. I’m planning to watch the parade and drink apple cider mimosas and play with Baby K.
Though I’ll make the cranberries and probably the stuffing. And maybe the gravy, because it’s Thing G’s fave. Though Thing 1 could absolutely make him some gravy he’ll love.

I’m excited about three of our four kids being in the same place at the same time.
I’m excited about two of our kids’ partners being here with us.
I’m excited to welcome my brother in law’s fam to our home.
I’m disappointed Thing 2 won’t be here, but what she’s doing instead is actually much more important.

I have real, and deeply rooted anxious feels surrounding Thanksgiving and I’m working hard to reconcile those feelings with my excitement of us all being together.
These opposing feels create unbalance in me, and I want the joy to outweigh those feelings of discomfort.
I don’t like Thanksgiving, but I love being surrounded by my family.
I’m hopeful to find the right balance.
But even if I don’t, I’ll always have the parade.
And that’s fine by me.

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Baby K weekend – November 2021

Last weekend was our Baby K weekend!
This kid, y’all!
At two and a half, she’s at that peculiar developmental place where she’s about seventy percent sweet like candy, and thirty percent rotten to the core. (she’s not really rotten…she’s appropriately moving between two and three)

She was already with her Papa when I got home from school Friday. She came running (the long way) around the island screeching, “BEEEEEE!”
All! The! Hugs!

It poured with rain so we didn’t make a trip to the playground.
Instead, we built with blocks.

Lately she’s all about playing veterinarian. Even though she left her doctor kit at home she still made sure Big Bird had a check up.

Mike and Josie came to visit Sunday morning.
Baby K was excited to have new grown-ups to play with.
Mike brought her one of his favorite books, Caps For Sale.
She loves this story, and does an enthusiastic “Tsz tsz tsz”!
Josie took this picture of us enjoying it together.

We took her home Sunday after her nap.
She was mad and sad about going home.
I told her that her mommy and daddy missed her and were ready for her to come home. She wanted to stay at “B-Papa house”.
She was content when Papa carried her down to the car and when I asked who she was going to hug first, she told me, “Cats!”
Thing 1 came out the front door when we arrived and Baby K went running across the yard shouting, “Momma!” But did not hug her mother.
I’m not sure she actually hugged the cats, but she was excited to see the dogs.

One weekend a month in which we get to play with, and be responsible for our granddaughter is absolutely one of our most favorite things!

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Halloween kitty

Since we moved into our new home, YBW and I have seen only a handful of kids.
Maybe ten kids total? They all look to be middle school age and younger.
This created some debate regarding Halloween.

My favorite thing is to sit on the porch and wait for the kids to come. Even the big high school age kids, if they’ve put forth any effort to ‘dress up’ I’m all about them having candy. Let them hold on to their childhood a bit longer.

Halloween in this new neighborhood would leave me disappointed and trust me when I say, nobody wants that. Not to mention all the leftover candy…and trust me when I say, neither of us needs to eat all that candy.

So we decided we’d go out to celebrate Halloween with Baby K.
Her mommy wants to make group costumes work as long as humanly possible, and this year she went ‘old school’ with ‘traditional’ costumes. You know, witch, mummy, vampire, black cat, ghost…that kind of thing. Picture watching the Great Pumpkin…

YBW and I picked up pizza and went out to their house, excited about trick or treating.

Baby K was a kitty!

Thing 1, Husband N, and Baby K went out for a bit, and when they made it back around the block, the stopped off at the porch. But, Baby K wasn’t finished yet! She asked that “B-Papa” take her out for a bit.
Y’all! We had the best fun walking with that girl!
She said “Trick or treat!” and “Thank you!” and even met another (bigger) girl dressed as a cat.
At one house there were a ton of big kids. The family was hosting a party. After our little kitty trick or treated, thanked the lady and man, she started after the big kids to join the party! We were like, um, this is a party for big kids, and you’re not quite a big kid just yet. She wasn’t hearing it and wanted to hang out with those teenage girls!
When we came down the hill and she saw her house, she said, “MOMMA! DADDY!” and dragged me along to get home faster.

She danced on the porch and ate a third of her body weight in candy.
I had the honor of tucking her in at bed time.
YBW and I came home full of pizza and a whole lot of Baby K love!
It was a mighty fine Halloween!

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“B-Papa house”

We had our first Baby K weekend.
Well, it was more of a trial run. She spent one night instead of two.

Saturday morning she spent her time waffling between eating her breakfast and rushing to the window to see if I was there to get her yet.
When I came down the hill to their house, she and her mommy were on the front porch waiting. I beeped the horn and she threw her hands in the air and said, “BEEEE!”

On the way home she talked excitedly about seeing her Papa. When we pulled into the garage, I sent her inside to find Papa while I got her bag and mine from the car.
Of course Baby K was immediately distracted by all the pumpkins I placed around the house. The search for Papa was temporarily postponed while she went everywhere she could reach them and brought them to a central location in the living room.


She systematically gathered them all around her.


Then cracked up with laughter!

Papa had to wait patiently for her to be ready to greet him. It was worth the wait though, she flung herself at him and squeezed him tightly.

Sunday we went to the little playground in our neighborhood.

This girl climbed and slid and climbed and slid and went in and under and over as much of the entire structure as possible!

She went into the little house and announced it was hers then began to say, “Arf arf!”
I asked her if she was a dog and she said, “Mm-HMM!”

She even barked out the window to her Papa.

We were able to play nearly half an hour before it began to sprinkle and we had to head home.

She’s really into creating family groups. Pulling together three things and calling it the baby, mommy and daddy. Whenever she groups these things, she says, “Awww” and kind of hugs herself.
She was doing it here with us too. “B-Papa, Awww”
When we were both near enough to each other and her, she would put her arms out and say, B-Papa. We would lean into her and she would make the sweetest mmmm sound and whisper the word home.
The fact that we are her home as much as her parents are overwhelms my heart. That we’re a place she feels comfortable and safe is powerful stuff, y’all.
The fact that I have seasonal decor she can play with doesn’t hurt either…

Categories: love | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments

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