Yesterday, there was another school shooting. This one was about an hour from us.
Everytime a shooting happens at a school, I go through what I think everyone does. First I am so saddened and shocked. Silent. Imagining what is happening inside another parent and child's worst nightmare. I start thinking about children hiding in closets and parents driving dangerously fast in the direction of their children, praying, begging God that they are ok. Then I begin to drift from that and place myself in those shoes. What if that was my reality? What if I didn't know if my child was ok or what if I was afraid that the child with a gun was MY child? I often decide at this point that I will never send my children to school. That I will homeschool them. After this, I begin an attempt to make sense of what has happened by finding causes. Was the shooter mentally unstable? Bullied? Abused at home? Who missed the signs that he was dangerous or screaming out for help that never came? What kinds of things lead a child to decide that murder is the only way to solve a problem?
At the end of all of this, I always come to the personal realization that we have failed our kids on a level that is unforgivable. Not just the parents of the kids who shoot, but our society in it's entirety. All of us, a part of this country that tells children that they can be whatever it is that they desire in their life. We tell them that they are this nation's most valuable resource but we don't walk this talk. Do we do all that we can to ensure that every child is safe, not just physically but emotionally, when they go to school? What it looks like to me, is that we don't. Because we fail to to take seriously the things that keep children out of trouble. Connection. Purpose. Outlets. People who give a shit.
When crisis strikes, our instinct as parents is to grab our kids up and hug them. Hold them tighter. Keep them closer. But what about our responsability to also hug up and connect with other people's kids? What about the kid that we forbid our kids to play with. The bad influence. Why are we not hugging that kid? Instead of banishing them from connection with our kids, why not invite them to dinner? Why not extend to them the one thing that we know can change the coarse of a child's life? Knowing that they are worth something. Knowing that someone cares about how you turn out? An anchor. By modeling this through action, we are also teaching our own kids to practice it. I know that I am not answering all questions or coming up with a solution that is obvious or complete with a post on my blog. I'm also not saying that a family dinner invitation will solve the problem of school shootings. These are just the questions that I am trying to answer for myself. You may not agree with me. But I believe that if we could all step outside of our comfort zone (our own families) and extend ourselves to giving a shit about other people's kids, we then have the power to turn this around. One kid at a time. But we don't. We have become so focused on our own that we close ourselves off and watch as things happen to others. All the while thinking, "Not my child. Not my child". We have turned inward. Our sense of community, all but gone.
When I worked with the children at the domestic violence shelter, I was often asked how I could do it. How in the world I went to work everyday knowing that kids who grow up in violent homes often become violent or victims of violence. To that I always said, because it takes one person to change the course of a child's life. One person. One activity. One anchor. But that person has to believe. Because these kids can smell a rat. These kids know if you think they are full of shit or that they are hopeless. So you better not think it, even for a second. How do we believe it? By looking at the reality that SIXTY SIX percent of kids who grow up in violent homes go on to change their lives (this is true for children of addicts and children of smokers too). We just don't hear about them because they aren't commiting crimes. So what's the big difference between the 66% that turn out ok and the 33% that don't? The 66% had something that the others did not. An outlet. A person. A connection that was someone or something other than their own parents. Another adult that took an interest in them. A sport that made them feel talented. A hobby that they shared with a good friend. A reason for feeling good about themselves. A root to plant them here and believe that they had purpose. It's not rocket science. People who believe in themselves and have the tools to express their anger and despair, do not kill people. We know the risk behaviors and precursers for violence. We know them. So why in the hell aren't we focusing on these kids?
Because we are ass backwards in this country. We fix things later. We wait for a problem. We build more jails and we find more things to outlaw. And maybe I'm talking like a crazy person here, but I just don't understand why we still are not stopping the problem when we actually can (with a young child) and instead finding new ways to contain the problem once they are too far gone as adults. It's mind blowing really.
So I guess my point is this, have you hugged someone else's kid today? Because my understanding is that the vast majority of us are good people with good intentions. We get a bad rap from the ones that are not. We have become afraid to reach out. Afraid that others will question our reasons. Or reject our offers of kindness. Or think we are weird. And to that I say, get over it. Do it anyway. Because we live in a violent world and no amount of closing our doors and shutting our blinds has changed that. When we turn away from others in pain, we leave it fester. We become a part of it's growth. We don't have to do that. We can be stronger than that. Martin Luther King Jr. said (and I paraphrase), the only thing that has ever conquered hatred, is love. It sounds like hippie dippy liberal peace and flower talk, I know. But you know what? It's the truth. And loving and connecting with your neighbor's kid may not prevent a school shooting. But it just might change that one child. It may show her that she doesn't need to have a baby at sixteen to feel loved. It may help that boy know that he is smart enough and brave enough to go away to college. By standing up for a child you are teaching them that they desreve fairness and kindness and they will learn to stand up for someone else. And on and on and on. You can be a part of that. And by doing that you are changing the world. You really are.
It is important to present your sensory kid with challanges. To expose them to real world experiences so that they may learn to self regulate. That said, the mall on a saturday night isn't the best idea. Or is it? I mean, he simply played out all the things I would do had I never learned social graces (questionable, I know). Run like a bat out of hell through Victoria's Secret? Done. Attempt to steal wildly inappropriate panties
from Victoria (which is it's own post, I swear. Barf.)? Done. Scale carousel gate like a crazed monkey while screaming "HORSEY!!!!". Done. Decide after the ride begins that it is in fact BS and you want off? Done. Attempt to carjack the floor model hybrid car for some sweepstakes? Check. Handprint up that car in a fit of pure fury when he learns he can not break into it? Check! But the mall offers some great opportunities for the two year old demographic too. Balloon walls and giant cars to ride are among them. Did you know that you never have to have quarters for those car rides when your kid doesn't know yet that they come alive? He is happy just to play on them. And I am happy to have not spent a dollar a pop on making them move. WIN! I wonder when that will no longer fly? Anyhoo, the moral of the story, be ready for lots of fun with a bit of sweat inducing panic when taking your littles to the mall on a saturday night. And bring a blanket, because they will fight to the death over getting their coat on to leave. And be aware, the child may make it seem to all those shopping the mall that they are in fact being kidnapped by the dude that just said, "eff it" and wrapped the kid up in a blanket and walked out the door. But you can do it. Take your kids to the mall. It's fun!
Going all Dukes of Hazzard on this blue truck. Livin' the dream
Something out of sight has happened to Mr. Pants. The long awaited and much anticipated language EXPLOSION! Happy dance! He's even got a few choice catchphrases and he seems to be loving his new found glimpse of what it's like to speak the English language and be understood. I am over the moon. We have waited and waited for this. And it is awesome. The look he gets when he realizes that I have heard and understood his request (demand?) is killer. His eyes get wide and he repeats it fifty times. I love it. It's interesting though that some of his words come with diction that sounds as though he is without teeth, while other words come out clear as a bell. Often in the same exchange. My personal favorites are "Day doo" (thank you) and "Yooo Wellll-commme". One, the babble of a toothless child, the other, perfect. So awesome.
Once he figures out a phrase, he runs with it. A highlight would be his over use of the words "no" and "way". "Mr. Pants are you ready for bed?", "NO WAY!". "Let's put your coat on", "NO WAAAY!!!". "Wanna try putting your poop in the potty?", "No WAY!!". "Would you like a banana?", "NO WAAAY!". "What's that?", "No WAY!". Most No Way!'s are accompanied by a dramatic run to the back of the house. Even if dramatic running isn't called for. But I guess when you are two and three quarters, dramatic running is always called for. The commitment he gives to his run down the hall to collapse onto his bed is inspiring. And I am recalling making those very same trips as a child. Good times.
But Mr. Pants, we need to chat about something...
I see you little dude. That intricate system of transfering toys from the living room to your room is fooling no one. Those buckets, dump trucks and totes that line the hallway and into your room? The toy conveyor belt? I'll give you that it's really very clever. But you can not take every single toy in the house and hide it from your sister. Even if you stake your claim by proclaiming, "Mine!". It's a thing. Saying that it's yours, doesn't always make it so. It's against the law, dude. I'm gonna have to put my foot down on this one. She gets to play too. It's funny because you have never once played with the lizard that sings in three languages. Not once. Or the clicking hippo. They have always been beneath you. But Plum takes interest and suddenly they are your favorite toys? I smell a rat, dude.
Also, I think we need to work on something. Some clarification is needed. When you say "My turn!", the sound is music to my ears. But, I think you may be a little confused as to the meaning of the word "turn". The word means that there is sharing taking place. That one person waits while the other takes some time to play with the coveted toy. Or, the turn. So when it is always your turn, the concept is not working. And just to be fair, yes you do hand the toy over and I appreciate that, but you never actually take your hands off of it before declaring it to be yours again. That doesn't count as giving a turn, bud. So let's work on that.
Third, my son, I need to talk to you about when it is appropriate to say "Wha Happen?". When I come out from putting your sister to sleep and your rolling around on the floor covered in parmesan cheese, the words, "What happened?" don't really fit. You happened, my love. You happened to the parmesan cheese. The cheese never stood a chance. And now the house smells like farts. Same thing goes for when you tip your sister over. When mama sees you do it and you respond with "Wha happen?", it doesn't work. It may serve you well to learn a great old standby for these occasions. One we are going to work on. Next up? "I'm sorry".
But all of that said, no amount of dramtic running or screaming, "UP! DOWN!" seventy two times is gonna make me want you to stop talking. Because for so long I was so afraid that you might not talk at all. That I would never hear your sweet voice say "Mama" or "Ish (itch) a ma butt!". But you do say those things and they still sound as sweet as the first time I heard you say them. So bear with me when I tell you a million times a day that I love you. Because I'm kind of dying to hear you say that to me (No pressure). And I can take it when you shhh me and tell me to "be Ki-et!" because I'm whispering in your ear as you watch DJ Lance Rock and his creepy troup of possessed styrofoam toys sing about parties in their tummies ( a song you know by heart). Yes sir, I can take it. Because one of these days, you will say it back. And it feels amazing to be absolutely sure of that.
You are kicking ass, Mr. Pants. Keep on talking. I promise I will keep listening.
He is about 2 seconds from telling me to be "Kiet" in this pic. Ingrate.
When snuggling with your child, you may be moved to tell them that you love them. If it happens that they are then moved to tell you to be quiet, your instinct may be to say something like, "You be quiet, jeez." or "I birthed you, dammit. Why don't you love me?". This is a normal reaction to rejection. And you are more than in the right to then hide in the kitchen and eat the last cupcake.
I'm coming up on a milestone that I wish I could put off for awhile. But time is not on my side with this one. Ms. Plum is going to turn one whether I approve or not and my days of nursing a infant are blowing past me in gusts. Toddler nursing is awesome, don't get me wrong. And if I know my girl like I think I do, she won't be weaning anytime soon. But our nursing relationship is changing. As she eats more solid food, she becomes less and less dependant on my milk for her complete nutrition. And there's a part of me that mourns that. I mean, it's kind of amazing that my body made her food, everything that she needed for a year. That the milk I made, protected her from illness. That nursing helps to soothe her teething pain and calms her fears when she wakes at night. And she's gone from a freshly baked eight and a half pound itty bitty squirmy baby bird to a big plump thirty pound giggly girl. It's been such a blessing to nourish my sweet girl. But now I find myself trying to contain her as she nurses while flipped upside down or trying to climb up onto my head. Very soon, I will be able to leave her without having to pump a bottle. She can have some cow's milk or water and solids until I get back. Very soon solids will replace the nutrition that I have been making for her. And I'm finding that pill hard to swallow tonight.
When I first made the decision to nurse my babies, my reason was because it was free. Formula is expensive! I could feed my baby for free if I nursed. So that's what I decided to do. It didn't take very long into nursing Mr. Pants that my reasons for breastfeeding became a whole lot more than that. And now as I approach a new normal for our family, one where there are no more little babies, I am left trying to remember all the things that I loved about nursing them as infants. So I am putting those reasons here. So that I never forget.
Reasons like, the moment when nursing a baby to sleep and they are almost there and their latch loosens and they fall off. Then they quietly and desperately search for mama and latch back on and fall deep into sleep. It's. The. Best. Sometimes they even give a sigh. It's absolutely heart melting and has been known to make me tear up. Big surprise, I know. Me? Cry?
When my baby is scared or tired or hurt. She nurses and it soothes her fears or helps her to relax into a peaceful sleep. And there is something really beautiful that happens with Ms. Plum. She looks at me. She looks right into my eyes and we spend some time just memorizing the minutes. Her big blue eyes meeting mine in that place.
I love that in the middle of night she finds her way back to my belly if she drifts away. Or that when she wakes in the morning with the most sweet and sleepy eyes you've ever seen, she wants to ease into the day with some mama milk. And when she's done, she giggles. And smiles the milky grin. The milky grin is the sweetest.
And then there's her paws. Sometimes she looks like a lil puppy when she nurses. She hangs on and her fingers curl under and her hands look like paws. It's kind of the greatest thing. And I will absolutely never forget that she does that. Or when she slides her hands under my body to keep them warm as she falls asleep.
I'm gonna miss it. I'm really really gonna miss it. But I'm so grateful that I had it. Because it was awesome. And I have a feeling that this next year will be just as awesome. Just different.
You know, if I was at your house and I saw a piece of poop just hanging out on the floor I'd be so grossed out. So why is it that when it's the poop of my own kid I'm all, "meh, whatever." Grab the nearest washable thing, pick up the poop, drop it in the toilet and go on with my day? Maybe it's because they are a part of you? Because I made them with my body so by some kind of extention I see their grossness as my grossness? Because I am rarely offended by my own poop? Dare I say I am sometimes impressed by it (I can not be the only one)? Maybe sleep deprivation dulls the senses or makes you zone out when faced with horrific things? I don't know. I just know that some of the stuff that happens in this house is absolutely the grossest shiz that ever happened and I handle it like a champ. Award winning awfulness. So I nominated myself for a few awards from myself and I won!
Here are the awards I earned this week.
Because I deserve them.
1. The Guts of Steel Award
I got barfed on. On purpose. A lot. By both children. Something primal took over. And it turns out I'd rather be bathed in vomit then scare them anymore than they already are by forcing them over a bucket or toilet. This week I held both of my kids while they barfed what seemed like buckets all over me. I took Mr. Pants to the toilet but he was afraid. So we sat on the floor next to the toilet surrounded by towels. I graciously accept (!) my Guts of Steel Award and would like to thank my mom for being awesome and comforting to me when I would barf as a child.
2. The I Watched a Movie Award
I did. During the day. It took me four days to finish it and Mr. Pants yelled "YO YO!" at me about fourteen hundred times expressing his disapproval and preference for Yo Gabba Gabba. But I watched Fame
. And even though it was a stinking pile of poo. I am proud to have finished a movie that only I
wanted see for the first time in a year. I accept this award and thank Irene Cara for making me want to go to a New York City performing arts high school so bad that I watched a totally crap remake twenty five years later.
3. The Cleanliness is Next to Godliness Award
I showered four times this week. Four times. And I scrubbed the floors. The end. Award please!
And in the spirit of spreading the love, I'd also like to give a few awards.
4. The Poop Nurse Award
And the winner is.....my friend Tiff! Tiff talked me through my baby girl's first bout with some nasty constipation and held my hand the whole way. And now my baby's pooping great because Tiff knows her shit. <== see what I did there?
5. The Tigress Award
And the winner is...Kelly! Who blogged
this week about getting back in the sack after having a baby and all the crazy body issues that come with that. I'm still struggling with my post baby body and I totally needed to read that. Big ups, Kelly. Big ups.
Feel free to offer an award to yourself in the comments. Because you deserve one or seven. I will clap for you and aknowledge your award. OR you can nominate another mama for a deserved award. Give out as many as you would like. Here is your award. Most obvious to me is that it could hold a decent amount of wine, no?
(image source: www.thestowcompany.com)
I have two big brothers. I was the baby. The only girl. I was pampered by many and treated like the queen of the house that I was by my mom and dad. But as much as I tried to woo those brothers of mine with my daintiness, they weren't buyin it. My charms only went so far with them. And that wasn't very far. They saw me for what I was. A baby sister. An arch nemisis. A way into our daddy's heart. A little girl longing to play with the big boys. And they never pitied me or coddled me. But eventually I won their favor. They let me in. It was perfect really. While I still got to be a fancy little girl about half the time, if I was going to build the bridge into their hearts that I'd designed in my mind when I went to bed at night, I was gonna have to get dirty. I was gonna have to learn how to play ball. How to build a fort. How to climb a tree and most all, how to fart. It was the latter that I think sealed the deal with these guys. Let's just say, I had skills.
My memories of growing up with my brothers are vivid. But what I remember most was how they made me feel. I knew they loved me. I knew because they never took it easy on me and they rarely excluded me. They let me play too. And when I got the hang of whatever it was, they were proud of me. I knew because, even though they didn't stay too close on the playground, they were watching and when I really did need them, they were suddenly there. Everytime. Ready to protect their little sister. But only if I wasn't able to protect myself. I knew they dug me even when they were kicking my ass (Not in a scary way. More of like a "why do you keep hitting yourself", tickle traps and de-pantsing kind of way).
So years go by and we grew up. In college, I'm on the phone late into the night with my brother after a painful breakup. Helping him to process the pain in his heart. Never thinking for a second that I'd rather be doing anything else.
Fast forward more years. I see my brothers truck pulling up at the wrong side of dawn to come and take me to my final surgery to try and get cancer out of my body before more drastic measures would be taken. I see his face and I feel safe. I climb into his truck and I feel almost relaxed. The smell of McDonalds coffee and Fahrenheit cologne. The smell of safety.
And then still even more years go by and I am in the bathroom trying to protect and care for my baby boy who is afraid and covered in bee stings
. The only thought in my head was that I needed to call my brother. He would know what to do. He would help me. He would bring me back. And he did.
These were our tests along with the hundreds of other life changing moments the three of us have been through. And we came out knowing that even if we sucked at everything else, we totally ruled at loving each other.
So, I relate to Ms. Plum's position in this family. I know what it's like to be the baby girl with a big brother. And from my perspective she is a very lucky little girl to have landed Mr. Pants in her corner throughout this life. Just like he hit the sister jackpot when she arrived. It's funny because these two couldn't be more different. But in a good way. I think they will balance eachother. Mr. Pants' tendencies to mask his emotions will not be tolerated by Ms. Plum. I guarantee it. She already draws him out. She brings anger and laughter out in him with ease. She brings out a softness from him that is only for her. I hope he will never be able to hide his feelings from her. I dream about future conversations they will have and her having to explain to him that the girl teasing him at school actually likes him. It will blow his mind. But he'll believe her, because he trusts her.
And he makes her curious and adventurous. She's a cautious little lady, but Mr. Pants won't abide caution (God save us) and pulls her into exploring furthur than she'd set out for. I kind of love that. Even if it makes my eyes cross at times. She admires his skills and he knows it. Recently she's begun crawling fast after him as he runs from her down the hall. Both of them in fits of laughter. He's too fast so he slows down, doubles back to her and says, "Cuh-mahn Cuh-mahn!", waving her back into the chase. And as I watch them, I see things like him in a pool with her on the edge, afraid to jump. He has his arms out and a smile and says, "Come on! Come on! You can do this. I'm right here. I'll catch you." And she will jump. Because she trusts him.
My greatest hope for these two loves of my life is that they find each other when life gets hard. That when his heart is broken, his sister will be there to pick him up, feed him dinner and remind him of his awesomeness. And he will feel loved. And when she finds herself alone, she will know that her brother will come and pick her up. And when she climbs into the seat next to him, she will feel safe.
I want them to have what I have.
Once a month, I am happy to host a guest post by a fellow blogger. I think that hearing from different voices with different perspectives and ideas is so important. Especially when it comes to this crazy parenting gig. So because I loved her so much last month, I asked her back. I hope you check out her blog. Leave a comment and let her know what you think. Because she is awesome.
So without furthur ado, February's guest post comes from Kim....
We all have our demons. The things about ourselves that we wish we could change or pieces of our personality we aren't proud of. It has taken me a long time to realize that all of my little ones stem from one major theme. Fear. I fear unknowns. I fear change. I fear being a person I can't respect.
What is truly ironic about our demons is that we often despise those traits in others. Why is that? Why are we so judgmental of something we should have more empathy for? I look at someone who has fears, specifically those that hold them back in life, and it makes me a little ill. I don't want to be around it. It makes me angry. How can that be? Shouldn't I be able to relate and therefore want to comfort the person? And what's worse, what if you recognize those traits in your own children?
You may recall that I wrote about being able to relate to our children. But what if those things that we should be most compassionate about, are the very things that we hate within ourselves?
I can't imagine that anyone truly in touch with their emotions hasn't felt this way at one point or another. Because one of the worst parts of parenting is passing on our negatives. If you smoke your children are more than twice as likely to begin smoking than those who don't. Abusers often raise abusers. But is nurture always to blame? Are some traits deeply embedded in us, regardless of parenting and influences?
My daughter has a lot of fears. Many of which she keeps deep inside and doesn't share. But I'm her mother, I know it. I can see it. Mostly because I recognize it from my own childhood. And I won't lie, it bothers me. It pains me and upsets me and makes me want to scream. Because I don't want her to be like me. I don't want her fears to hold her back. But how do you explain that to a five year old? Especially when you struggle with it yourself? And how do you parent without judgment or allowing your emotions to take over? Especially when that emotion is negative?
I find the best way is to slow down, try hard to remember what I would have wanted my mother to do and find some variation that will not coddle MK or hinder her ability to push through her fears. Oh, but it's hard. Because in the rest of my life I have simply been able to avoid someone who expressed traits I didn't like. Not when it's your child though. I'm now forced to deal with my demons head on. And in so many ways, I think that this is my greatest challenge, because it forces me to re-evaluate my own demons and how they have been holding me back. So that I am parenting by example and not “do as I say, not as I do”.
I won’t pretend to have all the answers to these questions. But I will say that it is a struggle for me. I work extremely hard to overcome my fears, and other negative traits, so that I don't pass them onto my children. Am I always successful? Of course not. I haven't perfected this parenting thing, let alone being a human being. But I work at it. And I often reflect on what I need to improve - a major part of my writing, in fact - and take strides to get where I want to be. Because I really believe that is how life is meant to be lived. A constant search for a better way. I believe that life gives us exactly what we can handle and that what we are handed we need to be stronger. It fixes our flaws. I think that it’s important for us, as parents, to face those demons head on, and what better way than to present themselves in the people we love most dearly in this world. So that we can work on them together. Because I may be the mother, but my children have a lot to teach me as well.
Kim is the mind/writer behind Great Big Question Mark. A blog that is so well written and thought provoking, it is a must read for me. So go over and show her some love at her bloggy blog.
But first please leave a comment here and tell her what you think.
Growing up, my family had a ton of ritual and tradition. All sorts of stuff that we looked forward to. Christmas meant advent calanders, candles and wreaths, new PJ's, pinatas, and sleeping in my brother's room on Christmas Eve to try and stay awake all night. Thanksgiving meant that we would get to eat my Aunt Candy's broccoli casserole, tell everyone what we were thankful for and create plays or dance routines for the family in my grandparent's rec room. Easter always meant baskets, fancy dresses, hats and orchids (perfect for a fancy little lady like me). But Valentines Day was one of my favorites. And it was very simple.
I am so excited this year to start the Valentine's Day tradition that my mom did with us.
My mom would make a dinner that everyone loved. Sometimes that meant things didn't go together (think spaghetti and baked potatoes). The table would be decorated with hearts and pink and red stuffs. Everyone had a festive place mat and setting. All of it dripping with lovey sap. And everyone had a small bucket stuffed with goodies and valentines. The Valentines Day bucket, you know, cousin of the Easter basket and the Halloween pillow case. We made valentines for each other and brought them with us to give out at dinner time. My mom always wrote the sweetest things to us. It always made me feel so good. And that's all there really was too it. A family dinner made extra special.
So the cool thing about keeping traditions with your kids is that they grow up and get crazy-super-all-kinds-of-giddy excited do the same with their own babies. Because they remember how awesome it was just to get a love note from their mom and have yummy dinner on chintzy heart shaped plates. And get an heart shaped eraser or a small heart shaped note pad. It's the little things that stay. Even something as simple as a dressed up family dinner.
So this year, The Pants Family Valentine's Day menu will be spaghetti w/meat sauce, broccolli and garlic bread (Mr. Pants would eat this every day, all day, if he could). Cupcakes with M&M's for decoration are up for dessert. And I've written a valentine for each of my people. Tomorrow, Mr. Pants will work on one for his daddy and sister. And Monday night (we have to celebrate a day early this year), our table will be all decked out with ooey gooey smooshy loveness.
And here's the cool part about this, the whole thing cost twenty one bucks and change. Food, decorations, little gifties. All of it. Can I get a what what! for dollar sections? And the Valentines are made from our own art supplies. And few things I just had around the house. I have had two small red planters from Ikea for about eleven years. I knew someday they would find a purpose. They are perfect for Pants and Plum's Buckets O' Love.
Happy Valentine's Day!
A valentine for mama
Plum's favorite foods
Do you have a Valentine's Day tradition?
Twenty nine days to soak in having a baby in the house
Twenty nine days to say goodbye to crawling
Twenty nine days to watch her stand alone
Twenty nine days to watch her think about walking
Twenty nine days to get used to my new gymnast of a nursling
Twenty nine days to stop and smell her baby hair
Twenty nine days til she is one
Everyday I will meet her where she is
Everyday I will love her for who she is
Everyday I will thank the Universe that she chose me
Everyday I will hold her hand while she is wobbly
Someday soon, I will let it go
Everyday I will remind myself that it is ok that she is growing
But still, everyday, I will remember when she was so small
Today I will give her my heart for the 336th time