As the Family Goes

JP II Quote

"As the family goes, so goes the nation, and so goes the whole world in which we live." John Paul II

Sunday, February 24, 2013

February 24, 2013 - Snapshot

Here's another snapshot for another week (starting top left, and moving clockwise to center):

One of the best things we ever did was to put the older boys in piano lessons.  We have a great teacher who takes them during the school day and lives not too far from us, and after a year and a half of lessons I am amazed at how they are progressing.  I can see the connection between music and everything else they are learning, and hope that with a good foundation, it will be a central element of our family for generations to come.  We both grew up in very musical families, so it makes my heart happy to hear the kids growing in their ability and confidence to play an instrument.  Music really is beautiful, for so many reasons.

This guy - I love him!  I have crossed a new bridge with him in that I am accepting his troublesome ways as part of his personality.  It can be challenging, make no mistake, and for a while I was just so exacerbated with him.  He's two, and I think I've been buying into the terrible two myth, which makes me sad because two is such a beautiful age.  When I manage to sit back and look at things objectively (you know, not like he is deliberately trying to do things that drive me crazy!) I realize what a gem of a little boy he is.  So smart, so full of life, and so funny.  And he's mine - hurray!  Oh - and that's blue marker on his face.  Life with a two-year-old...yep.

My oldest son has been stepping up to the plate in big ways around here, taking responsibility for things like preparing snacks for everyone, helping the kids get loaded into the van, and even changing his little brother's wet diaper and dressing him for bed.  I just can't believe how quickly the time goes, and what a joy it is to see him enjoying to help out.  People always say don't wish their life away, and of course I don't.  But I also recognize there is so much to enjoy in every stage, and I am loving each new year that comes our way, each new part of them that develops or grows into something I had previously not seen in them.  Life really is beautiful, and I'm happy to have a front-row seat, to see it all unfolding.

Do you remember being lifted way up in your Daddy's arms?  I do.  I also remember what a thrill it was as the oldest (who always said, "do it to me too!" but was always too big) when my Dad did pick me up.  There's nobody in the world that can measure up to a Dad, and these kids have a pretty great one.

My second oldest boy has taken my daughter under his wing, and it's so sweet.  With the wintery weather (and her just barely four) she can't go outside unattended.  When I put it to the kids who was going to take her out one day last week, he didn't waste any time in offering.  He has been outside with her every day since, and she adores it.  She loves to be taken care of, and he is so sweet with her.  While they are out he never leaves her side, and I can hear her chattering away and him happily answering all of her questions and explaining how every little thing works.  I love that she has big brothers.

I also love that she has a little sister.  Don't get me wrong, while many people called her the poor girl with all the brothers prior to the arrival of our newest girl, I don't think she had it too bad.  Nevertheless, she is revelling in having a little sister.  Her eyes shine the moment she sees her, and she runs around the house saying things like, "I want to kiss my baby sister!" And the feeling is definitely mutual - her baby sister adores her.  I am so glad they have each other.

This little guy is growing in leaps and bounds these days.  He's getting tall and slim, much slimmer than his brothers, which I think means he takes after my mother's side of the family.  I'll throw out a prediction now that he will be taller than his brothers one day, which would be fitting for him as the third boy.  Maybe he won't, I don't know, but it's fun to think about it.  Anyway he's also starting to put letter sounds together and is just on the verge of reading, which is really exciting.  He's doing really well in all his subjects in fact, not that it's very intensive in Kindergarden, but I can definitely see a big difference from when we first started the school year.  He is so peaceful and mild, and just a really happy little boy.  And I love him to pieces.

And this...never gets old. It occurred to me that the way babies love their parents is so unique.  I know I must have loved my parents that way, but I was too young to remember exactly what that felt like.  Which made me think about fact that this joy she is experiencing at her Daddy, the same joy she experiences with both of us many times a day, will grow and develop into something much different than it is now.  This moment right here is something that will be gone from her memory in a short time, but will be in ours forever. In that way it is a unique and special gift.  Parenthood really is such a beautiful blessing.


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