Posts Tagged With: love

IWotB 2021 edition ~ day two

My darling friend and mentor Jessica sent me the loveliest gift to celebrate my birthday.

The concept of these wishbeads is right up my alley. Something Jessica knows intuitively.
When I called to thank her for this precious and thoughtful gift, I asked her if she knew how much I loved tigers eye.

She assured me she did know, her choice reinforced based on their meaning and her wish for me.
Her wish is contained in the little brass cylinder. A wish that spoke to finding my fierceness.
A wish filled with love from a woman with whom I share a fierce love.

My life would be not only different without Jessica in it, it would be absolutely lacking.
The word gratitude is simply not enough to express the depth and breadth of my feelings surrounding this woman. But currently it’s the only one I have, therefore I will say I’m grateful for Jessica.
And thankful for the lovely gift she sent as I celebrate my International Week of the Birthday.

Categories: me | Tags: , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments

lilacs over here doing as they do

My lilacs are blooming like crazy.
It’s been chilly and breezy, but they’re out there being as beautiful. As they do.
I went out to cut some.
Even though we’ve been in construction chaos, I wanted to see and smell them in the house.

It was absolutely worth it.
Dang, I wish y’all could smell this!

Categories: around the house | Tags: , , , , | 6 Comments

Baby K is two!

Monday was the second anniversary of Baby K coming into our world.
Y’all, I’m just as awestruck, just as joyful, just as SQUEE as I was that day.
This little girl is more than I could ever hope for!

YBW and I went out to their house in the early afternoon timing our arrival with her waking from her nap.
Three things happened all at once: Baby K woke kind of grouchy, Aunt Gaga (Thing 2) called, and Papa pulled M&M’s out of his pocket.

When she heard her Auntie’s voice, Baby K was all smiles even though she was grouchy. Then suddenly, she climbed out of her mommy’s lap and ran to her Papa.
I was over there like WTF?
That’s when I realized he bribed her with candy.
Classic grandfather move. (imagine me shaking my fist, while also being slightly amused)

Well, it turns out talking to your Aunt and sharing chocolate with your Papa is just what a grouchy-wake-up birthday girl needs.

Presents were tricky, as she really didn’t understand exactly what was going on, but she loves to rip paper, so it evens out. However, she does rip the teeniest little pieces of paper off stuff, so it takes about forty-seven-thousand (possible exaggeration) separate rips to actually unwrap a gift.
Papa and I solved that problem with gift bags, though she pulls out each piece of tissue one at a time so it’s a similar process. (oh, that girl!)

This backpack was a hit.
She said, “A clue! A clue!”
The moment she got it on her back, she waved and said, “Bye!” before turning and walking to the front door.

That girl was ready to go!
Um…peace out, chicken.

My offspring are notorious for their ambivalence toward cake, and it seems to have carried on to the next generation too. So, instead of cake Baby K had ice cream as her birthday treat! A chocolate shake to be exact. From this delicious little frozen custard place not too far from their house.

How it started:

Where we finally put a stop to it:

Birdie took her straight to the tubby while her Daddy and Papa cleaned the mess, and her Mommy started a load of laundry.

Y’all it was spectacular!
She became one with that ice cream and it was an absolute joy to watch. Even when she splashed it all over the rest of us, we couldn’t help but laugh!

This was Baby K’s second birthday in the time of covid. Even though she didn’t get a big ol’ party, we had big ol’ fun!

My daughter’s daughter is precious and beloved.
I’m grateful she was born.
I’m grateful to celebrate her birthday with her.
I’m grateful to be her Birdie.

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

Birdie water is best water, or pros and cons of Baby K living at her own house

Thing 1, Husband N, and Baby K came to have dinner with us yesterday.
After hugs and kisses, the first thing that kid did was grab my water and chug it.
Apparently Birdie water is best water.

This lead to a bit of a joke that I’d make a pro and con list about Baby K living at her own house. Throughout the evening, each of the adults would randomly say “Pro” or “Con” and what began as an off the cuff remark became a reality.
Yep, I made a list.

Let me say this before I share it with y’all, my heart has disappointment that I don’t get to see my grandbaby every single day. But, there is a completely new kind of joy in seeing her.
A perfect example: last night, she and I played a game in which she ‘put me to bed’. She placed a pillow on the floor and gently pushed me and said, “Go to sleep.” When I laid my head on the pillow she squatted down and kissed me. Then I pretended to snore. My signal to wake was her tickling my foot. I giggled dramatically and sat up, saying “You tickled my foot to wake me up!”
She laughed and the game started all over again.
At one point her gentle pushes to get me to lie on the pillow became rough and then she was pushing my on my face. I told her, “I don’t like when you push so hard on my face. I will play with you, but please stop pushing me.”
She stopped and looked at me then went around me to point at the pillow and said, “Go to sleep!”
We had an accord.
A bit later I shifted the way my body was ‘sleeping’. I rolled onto my belly and bent my knees, touching my feet together then I fake snored my ass off.
Apparently me moving my body changed the game because she began walking around me going, “Hmm.”
Then she pulled my feet apart and began to climb up my back starting at my bottom. She did this several times, ‘falling’ off me at different places and in different ways.
Her giggles were off the charts, and she was mad as hell when her mommy told her it was time to go home.

Because I didn’t spend the entire day with her I had so much more energy to really play with her!
That is worth every single minute of us living in two different houses. Well, that and the fact that the drive is now forty-five minutes instead of eleven hours.

Here’s my pro and con list.
PROS
things that can be left out and remain safe:
drinks
remotes
reading glasses
pens
notebooks
bookmarks remain in books
(for the most part) everything remains tidy
reading more
doing less laundry
lack of flying food and dishes
folded laundry remains folded
more energy for play

CONS
not hearing toddler feet running down the hall
lack of random hugs and kisses
not having legit excuse for watching a shit-ton of Disney
hearing her say, “Papa”
watching YBW’s face when she says, “Papa”
not playing
not reading to her
not rocking with her before bed
not snuggling
not hearing new words as they come
not watching new skills as they develop
she has to leave to go home
I have to leave to go home

Truth be told, there is more good, more joy, and more opportunity for a new and different sort of closeness because my daughter and her family live in their own house, but I sure do miss receiving random kisses throughout my days.

Categories: me | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , | 8 Comments

adapting here and adapting there

Thing 1, Husband N, Baby K, and their two dogs officially began living in their new house April first. (no foolin’)
YBW took the day off work. We loaded up four vehicles with the last of their things, and off we went.

Baby K has a big girl bed with the most amazing (to her) Moana duvet cover! She’s so tiny in that full size bed, but it’s the cutest thing you’ve ever seen.
In the few days they’ve been there, Thing 1 and Husband N are getting settled in their room, and setting up work space for Husband N who only goes into the office two days a week.
Thing 1 built a kitchen table and chairs and a small storage island too.

After being at the house, YBW and I went out Easter Sunday for a visit.
Baby K came out of her house squealing and shouting, PAPA! BEEEE! (for Birdie) and running to hug us. That did YBW’s heart good, he’s missed his little granddaughter.

That girl had such fun hunting for eggs for the first time out in her brand new yard.

Her mommy found eggs big enough to hold Bluey characters, Moana and Frozen stickers, and even toddler-safe nail polish

color: Berry Sweet

It was so beautiful outside, we just had to sit on the porch and check out her loot! She’s holding her Bluey and singing to her.

After her egg hunt, she sat snuggled in her Papa’s lap before letting him take her to bed for her nap.
They’re coming to our house Wednesday afternoon and staying for dinner. If y’all could have seen the grin on my husband’s face!

My Momma heart is chock full of joy for my girl setting up her home.
I honestly think unpacking and getting settled is harder and more stressful than actually moving all your things. They’re making it work. Husband N goes through a space and cleans it well before Thing 1 begins to unpack. They’re working together to create their home in that precious little house.
My Birdie heart is chock full of joy that my grandbaby is so excited to see me that she runs into my arms when I arrive at her new house.

I thought I would feel so sad when they moved. I don’t really.
I mean, I miss seeing them every day, but I know they’re just a forty-five minute drive away. And when I see them in their new space, creating a home that works for them, I feel pride and joy.
When I’m home and I don’t hear a little voice saying, “Papa!” as she runs down the hall, I’m not sad like I expected, I’m grateful we had that time. Of course, when I’ve got a drink on the table and she doesn’t come over and snag it and chug it down as fast as she can then run away, I’m super happy she’s at her house.

We’re adapting here.
They’re adapting there.
It is as it is.
It is as is should be.
And I am content in my grateful life.

Categories: me | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 8 Comments

adventures with Birdie and Papa

When mommy and daddy are away, Baby K will play.
Or as her Papa said, “When it’s just you and Birdie and me, we’re going to party like rock stars.”

Thing 1 and Husband N did a two day – one night trip to celebrate Thing 1’s birthday. Then it kind of became a bit of celebration for buying their first house. It was also a bit of utilizing the built in childcare YBW and I can provide.
Thing 1 remarked that going on a minibreak two weeks before closing on their house was chock full of irony, but it was already planned and she was excited.

Saturday morning Papa read every book in the basket in Baby K’s room, then she and I colored with markers at the kitchen table before we went to the playground at our neighborhood elementary school. The first thing she did was fall off the stairs on the slide. (grandparent fail?)
I think she was more scared than hurt and even with the snuggles and kisses and mulch removal, she was unsettled. Not the best way to begin our adventure, but she rallied and chose to be adventurous.


She struggled to climb up through the tube, but with Papa pushing from the bottom, and Birdie pulling from the top, she made it!
Then there was lots of giggles going down the slide on the other side.

She “quack quack(ed)” at all the birds and said, “Hi!” to the airplane flying by.

When we got home from the playground, we had lunch then watched some of Moana.
After her nap, she played in her media table, which is currently filled with a variety of beans.
She had pizza for dinner, but not just any pizza, pepperoni rolls which are kind of like garlic knots and stromboli had a delicious baby. And she loved it!

She had such fun exploring at the new house Sunday morning. She’s got a penchant for picking up construction debris and finding creative ways to use it.
She found this empty caulk tube and turned it into a scope. (yes, we brought it home and washed it for her to play with)

We blew bubbles on the porch after lunch. Well, we didn’t blow them, the bubble blowing machine did. Baby K and the dogs danced and chased and popped so many bubbles!
Her mommy and daddy got home about ten minutes after she woke from her nap

Y’all, we had such fun with that girl!
How fortunate we can provide childcare for her parents at the same time getting to spend such precious and sacred time with our granddaughter.
Birdie and Papa FTW!

Categories: love | Tags: , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

without love we are nothing

In his letter to the Corinthians, Paul wrote many beautiful things about what love is and is not. One of his more important points is that love is meant to exist without conditions.

Unconditional love.
We don’t always find that in our world.
The worst thing humans do to each other is love with conditions.

My second daughter experiences a great deal of the way selfish love works. Love is a weapon. Love is power to hold over another. Love is a tool with which to manipulate so get what you want.

I plan to make a powerful statement on love, but first I have to provide a bit of background info…
Thing 2 and her friends lost out on the house they were trying to rent. That hit her hard.
She’s not been seeing her counselor regularly (because, covid) and she didn’t realize how much she missed it until she got a call last week saying he’s starting to see clients in the office again.
She and Boyfriend M are strong and healthy.
But personally she isn’t in the best place.
She started a new job last week, one she’s enthusiastic about.
She’s making an appointment to see her therapist this week.
She and Boyfriend M had a good talk about mental health and being in a good supportive relationship.

Monday morning she wrote in our group chat

She’s excited about feeling like she’s killing it and doesn’t even need help.
Then immediately not wanting to jinx it.

Thing 1 and I shared our joy at her enthusiasm, and spoke to many things.
But I became stuck trying to make sense of this contradiction.

(here’s where the connection to love starts to make some sense)

Acknowledging you’re ‘killing it’ does not jinx it.
And, ‘killing it’ does not mean you can’t use or don’t need assistance, support, and love.
‘Killing it’ means you’re doing your best.

I believe we must celebrate what’s good. What feels positive.
But more than that, I believe being good, or successful, or feeling healthy doesn’t mean you don’t need (or want) backup.
It’s not one or the other. It’s a delicate balance of relying on yourself and the love of your tribe.
Love and support foster your personal strengths.

‘Killing it’ and needing help are not mutually exclusive.
You can ‘kill it’ and still receive support from the people who love you.
And best of all, when you’re ‘killing it’ as well as receiving love and support the world is a truly wonderful place.

Thing 2 shared how fortunate she feels to have friends, family, and “a mans” who love and support her endlessly.
Her counselor said, “God works in mysterious ways.” and later that same day Boyfriend M told her “the universe works in mysterious ways”.
She was angry and sad and didn’t want to hear it. But she knew they were right.
She knew this because in one twelve hour span, she had love and unconditional support from ‘the boys’ (her core friend group), then her counselor, then her Momma, and then Boyfriend M.
She said, “Everyone cares about me, for me, not their own selfish gain. And that it truly magical, I’m glad I appreciate that now. At the time, I was cheesed off because it felt like I was fine and everyone was treating me like a broken toy all at once –turns out I was not doing fine and needed that huge multi-directional wave of love and support.”

To which her sister replied, “We will always love and support you, that’s what we’re here for. Even if sometimes it feels like we’re being mean or treating you like a broken toy, we just want you to be the youest you you can be.”

I hope with all my might that this experience begins to shift Thing 2’s understanding.
I want her to know you cannot jinx your success by celebrating the joy of it.
You can be ‘killing it’ and still require support.
You can be as successful as humanly possible and still rely on the love of others.

(here’s where the connection to Paul starts to make some sense)

Paul knew what was up.
In his letter to the Corinthians he wrote a great deal of what love is and is not.
He wrote he was nothing without love.
He wrote we should remain hopeful and faithful and do everything in love.

I’m not as eloquent as Paul, but these are some of the most important things I know about life and love:
Love is safe.
Love comes at you to lift you up.
Love is a celebration of who you are.
Love is the greatest gift.

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

meant to be

How precious is this house?

This adorable house is the reason we couldn’t go to our home site Sunday morning.
This adorable house will soon be home to Thing 1, Husband N, and Baby K!

YBW, Baby K, and I met Thing 1 and Husband N there Sunday morning while the inspector was there.
In the car, Baby K sang to us the whole time. She also kept saying, “Mama” (pronounced Meh-MEH) at random intervals. We told her Mommy and Daddy were at the new house and we were on our way to see them.

That girl was so excited to be in the new house!
She didn’t even really understand that it’s going to be hers.
Of course she was excited to see her parents, but mostly she was excited to explore.
We successfully stayed out of the inspector’s way while still investigating every nook and cranny. And believe me y’all, that attic space has its share of nooks and crannies!

When we said goodbye and left the house, we drove through the neighborhood a bit. It’s just as precious as the house they’re buying.
There’s an elementary school around the corner with the best damn sledding hill you’ve ever seen!

Thing 1 loved this house the moment she saw it. She spoke of it’s character. She spoke of it’s feeling of comfort. She spoke of it’s potential.
She knew this was meant to be her home.
She knew it welcomed her with open arms.

My momma (and Birdie) heart was anxious until I saw it. Until I walked through it.
It has such charm and character.
It has a warm and gentle welcoming feel about it.
It was truly meant to be the home of my daughter and her family.

I hugged my girl and told her, “You can live here.”
She hugged me tighter.
She and I both know she can damn well live wherever she likes. She and I both know she’s an adult and makes her own decisions. She and I both know I do my best to respect her life choices.
But she and I both know that it matters a great deal that we had that moment. That we both know we’re comfortable in that house that will become her home. That as joyful as she is, she has my full support to contribute to that joy.
I’m not sure I’m explaining it right, but we understand what it means and that’s all we really need.

They’re scheduled to go to closing the end of March.
I’m so excited for them!

Categories: around the house | Tags: , , , , , , | 6 Comments

the worst truth

Thing 1 and I were in the car Wednesday morning. I’m not exactly sure how it started, but we were talking about how to manage anxiety and it turned into how Mommas always prioritize your best interests even if (or especially when) it’s hard to understand.
Thing 1 said something to the effect of: Even years fourteen through eighteen when I thought I hated you, I always knew you’d do whatever it took to help me, to take care of me and keep me safe.
Then she said, “That’s why I came to you when I was cutting myself and wanted to die.”

I had an immediate rush of relief. I always worried that when she came to me for help and ended up in the hospital for two weeks she felt like I betrayed her instead of helped her.
She told me while being in the psyc hospital was in itself traumatizing, she never equated the two. Her asking for my help was one thing. Being in the hospital was another thing entirely. They’re separate in her thinking.

I didn’t know this at the time, but three or four months prior to her coming to me, she talked with her dad. When she shared with him how she was feeling and that she was hurting herself, he “looked away from me, stood up, walked out of my room and shut the door behind him.”
He left her sitting there after she told him she wanted to die. (Everything I think and feel about this is a different topic for a different day, but let me assure you, ain’t none of it good.)

In the car that morning, she talked about how it only made it worse for her. She felt like if her own dad didn’t love her enough to help her it only reinforced all her negative feelings about herself. She began cutting herself more and actively planning how to end her own life.
Then she said something that literally took my breath away.
She wondered aloud if her father would have let her die in order to hold it over my head for the rest of our lives. She imagined him saying to me, “She killed herself because she hated you and it’s all your fault.”

I opened my mouth to deny her wondering.
I opened and closed my mouth five times before I finally said, “I want to believe he loves you more than that, that he’d rather you be alive than hold it over me forever.”
But I knew in my heart of hearts that she was right. And sadly, she knew it too.

Then she said, “Would he really want me dead to punish you? Don’t you think he loves me more than that?”
To which I replied that I do think your father loves you in the way he can love. However, his grief would fade. The pain of losing you would ease. But he could get pleasure from blaming me that you were so unhappy and hated me so much that you took your own life. All the pleasure, absolutely none of the effort.

Here’s the worst truth.
I didn’t know she talked to him before she came to me.
He never told me she came to him. Not when I told him I was taking her to the ER. Not the two weeks she was in hospital. Not when we had family sessions with the therapist when they released her from the hospital.
I only found that out because she told me in the last couple of years.

Had she taken her life I would never know that he could have done something to prevent that. I would have lived the rest of my life thinking that when we struggled the most I couldn’t keep my baby safe.

In Conscious Discipline there is a ‘safe keeper’ ritual in which the adult in the home or classroom (or wherever) tells the kids, “My job is to keep you safe.” to which the kids reply, “Our job is to help you keep us safe.”
My daughters knew I was their safe keeper.
They still know this.
But this ritual is different now.
They are their own safe keepers and I am the one helping them.

I want so desperately to reassure her that her life is worth more than her father’s desire to “win” against me. I all honestly can’t do that. As soon as she spoke I knew she was right.
She called this ‘a startling revelation’ then told me, “As soon as I said the words I wanted to suck them back in because I knew they were true.”

I’m not really sure why I’m writing this for y’all to read.
Partly because it was simply too big for me to keep inside. Partly because I thought writing it would help me understand it better.
I feel confident in saying I don’t understand it any better.

I hate that my girl experienced this time in her life.
I hate that I experienced it.
But I am awed and humbled by the healing we’ve experienced in the years since.
I am awed and humbled by the words we share.
By the love we share.

Categories: on being a mom | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 14 Comments

energy alignment and evolving spaces


I came across this on instagram the other night. It struck a chord in me as I immerse myself in packing.

I like how it says not ‘aligned with who you are anymore’.
I like the idea of your space evolving as you do.

I’ve been thinking about this concept as YBW and I leave this house to live in the new house.
The new house will begin with who we are together, where and how we are aligned now.

A new alignment will not change who we were individually, and who we were together. It doesn’t change how we lived in previous dwellings individually and together. It simply shifts the focus to who we are in this moment in time.
This is who we are now.

I believe creating new alignments does not dishonor who we used to be. I believe it is a reflection of who we are now.
I believe we can support and keep each other safe through this process.
I believe we can encourage each other’s alignment with love and respect.

Each of us choosing what we bring to our new home. How we choose to live together in this new environment.
What we bring with us has it’s own energy. We owe it to ourselves and each other to choose that energy carefully.

I’m hopeful as we continue to pack our things we choose mindfully.
I’m hopeful that the energy we bring into our new environment is positive and promotes growth.

Eight months ago, I wrote about being mindful how I curate my environment.

Things are just things.
At this stage of my life, my main focus is to curate my surroundings in a way that helps me thrive. Living my intention, learning and creating, and growing into the next version of me gives me all the feels.

That’s the kind of energy I’m all about creating an alignment with.

Categories: around the house | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 4 Comments

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