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whatever things are lovely…

I'll admit it.  Sometimes I am a begrudging stay-at-home mom.  Not because I don't enjoy my darlings (and they ARE darling).  But because of the every-day-all-day-ness of it. Sweeping the floor for the third time in twenty-four hours.  Doing laundry and dishes.  Picking up the toys knowing I will be picking them up again in an hour.  Calling the fence guy and the cable people and the pest control man and the health insurance company (when did health insurance get so complicated, by the way?).  Rinse, repeat, and whine about it.  Yes, I'm whining.  Because as an extrovert, sometimes just whining about it (repeatedly) lets the air out of the stress-balloon. 

But sometimes, frequently, I have a morning where I realize–no, actually feel so lucky to be home cataloging all the things my babies are doing and learning and becoming.  Like this morning, when Evyn decided she wanted to do her own teeth and hair.  I stood in awe of how methodical and able and proud she was – do you mind if I show you a virtual flip-book of the process?

Notice the serious expression:

1

Making sure the back of her new 'do lays down (she has one of those angled bobs – I call them "Emma bobs," because it seems like a 'do for an Emma or Sophie or Madison)

2

"This hair belongs on this side, right, Mommy?" (paying careful attention to where her hair parts)

  3

Grr, stupid flash – I wasted time trying to turn it off and missed a picture of her fumbling with her barrette, which she put in by herself!

4

This was one of my favorite parts of her little routine – the "foofing" at the end:

5

Putting her comb away and fishing for the finishing touches… 

6

You know, you're never fully dressed without a piece of jewelry,

7  

8

and a smile!

9

The whole little routine was just precious to watch.  There's nothing like that little voice exclaiming,"I can do it myself, Mommy!"  And at one point, "This is cool, Mommy."  (My three year old said, "cool" as if this was the proudest, bestest moment of her life so far).

She went on to make me a cake and candle from play-doh, ask me to read her "Hey, Little Ant", discuss how it would be wrong to squish the ant because "that would hurt," put barrettes in my hair and instruct me how to turn my head "so Daddy could see it" when he comes home, and then went off to take a nap without complaint.

It's a day like this that God reminds me what's really important to dwell on.

"Finally, brothers, whatever things are true, whatever things are honest, whatever things are just, whatever things are pure, whatever things are lovely, whatever things are of good report; if there be any virtue, and if there be any praise, think on these things."  ~ Phillippians 4:8

Dawn - Sweet…
They grow up all too quickly.

Dawn - Sweet…
They grow up all too quickly.

Amber - What a great reminder. Sometimes it’s hard not to get weighed down by picking up the same toy for the millionth time or washing the dishes after it seems you just washed a whole pile a second ago. We really are lucky to get to stay home and watch these precious people grow up!

Amber - What a great reminder. Sometimes it’s hard not to get weighed down by picking up the same toy for the millionth time or washing the dishes after it seems you just washed a whole pile a second ago. We really are lucky to get to stay home and watch these precious people grow up!

Andrea - How can Evyn be old enough to do her own hair AND put on jewelry AND say the word “cool?!” It seems like I was just reading about her baby antics!
I loved the virtual flip-book. The “foofing” at the end was my most favorite part. Absolute perfection!
You – an extrovert? NO WAY!!! :)
-Andrea

Andrea - How can Evyn be old enough to do her own hair AND put on jewelry AND say the word “cool?!” It seems like I was just reading about her baby antics!
I loved the virtual flip-book. The “foofing” at the end was my most favorite part. Absolute perfection!
You – an extrovert? NO WAY!!! :)
-Andrea

melissa sews - You’re a wise woman… try to soak it all up and focus on the positives. Good advice. It’s amazing what changing your perspective does for your attitude. Good advice in Philipians.
I learned (not that long ago) that it’s just not important to have everything in it’s place all the time. And a super-clean house will have to wait until my kids are older. I used to kill myself trying to do EVERYTHING all the time and was miserable for it. Now, I take time out to enjoy those simple everyday moments and forgive myself if I don’t check off everything on my to-do list. They won’t be little long.

melissa sews - You’re a wise woman… try to soak it all up and focus on the positives. Good advice. It’s amazing what changing your perspective does for your attitude. Good advice in Philipians.
I learned (not that long ago) that it’s just not important to have everything in it’s place all the time. And a super-clean house will have to wait until my kids are older. I used to kill myself trying to do EVERYTHING all the time and was miserable for it. Now, I take time out to enjoy those simple everyday moments and forgive myself if I don’t check off everything on my to-do list. They won’t be little long.

Val - Great advice. I too sometimes focus on the whiny part of parenting. These moments are so precious! Thanks for sharing-great post.

Val - Great advice. I too sometimes focus on the whiny part of parenting. These moments are so precious! Thanks for sharing-great post.

Regina - This has to be one of the sweetest blogs ever…

Regina - This has to be one of the sweetest blogs ever…

Lucy - Andrea,
I’ve just tripped over your blog. My husband is leaving in two weeks for his second deployment to Iraq, and I’m blogging for therapy, and searching other military blogs for ideas.
I’ve read The Story and The Rest of the Story (but couldn’t figure out where to post that you’d see it, other than here) and you’ve got me in tears. Thank you for your service. Thank you for capturing so many of the things I think and feel so well in writing.
Lucy

Lucy - Andrea,
I’ve just tripped over your blog. My husband is leaving in two weeks for his second deployment to Iraq, and I’m blogging for therapy, and searching other military blogs for ideas.
I’ve read The Story and The Rest of the Story (but couldn’t figure out where to post that you’d see it, other than here) and you’ve got me in tears. Thank you for your service. Thank you for capturing so many of the things I think and feel so well in writing.
Lucy

Gift of Green - Okay…you also realize in that last photo that she is gesturing, “Hang ten, dude!” My 4 year old would be very impressed with that. :)

Gift of Green - Okay…you also realize in that last photo that she is gesturing, “Hang ten, dude!” My 4 year old would be very impressed with that. :)

amy - i just found found your blog through your comment on jane’s apron. i have enjoyed reading through your story. i am also a stay at home mom and this post is quite easy to relate to. i’ll be visiting here often!

amy - i just found found your blog through your comment on jane’s apron. i have enjoyed reading through your story. i am also a stay at home mom and this post is quite easy to relate to. i’ll be visiting here often!

Teri - I came this way via Nester and stayed up entirely too late reading your archives.
I don’t really know what else to say but this post spoke to me and mirrored exactly the way I feel some days. Thank you for sharing.

Teri - I came this way via Nester and stayed up entirely too late reading your archives.
I don’t really know what else to say but this post spoke to me and mirrored exactly the way I feel some days. Thank you for sharing.

Lucy - Hi Crystal,
Yes, I realized after the comment was up that I’d called you by the name of another commenter. Sorry about that =/. Thanks for stopping by and leaving a comment. A lot of what you wrote really clicked with me, and it’s nice to hear from you.
Lucy

Lucy - Hi Crystal,
Yes, I realized after the comment was up that I’d called you by the name of another commenter. Sorry about that =/. Thanks for stopping by and leaving a comment. A lot of what you wrote really clicked with me, and it’s nice to hear from you.
Lucy

Penny - so sweet! She is so precious!

Penny - so sweet! She is so precious!

Penny - so sweet! She is precious!

Penny - so sweet! She is precious!

Susan - She is too cute for words! I LOVE these pictures.

Domestic Diva - awww she is so adorable and so very detailed with getting that hair just right. Kids are so precious!

Domestic Diva - awww she is so adorable and so very detailed with getting that hair just right. Kids are so precious!

Sarah - What a great day! Thanks for the reminder!
Sarah

Heidi McGuirk - Only twenty minutes since i convinced my almost three year old to go to sleep by telling her that the whole animal world was sleeping. The birds in their nests and the bunnies in their burrows. Only ten minutes before that we were both very upset and i couldn’t see the end of the fight. It just shows how innocent little people are, and how their imagination can aid in distraction and distress. Thanks for the reminder for the morning when she dosent eat her cereal!
:) Heidi

Heidi McGuirk - Only twenty minutes since i convinced my almost three year old to go to sleep by telling her that the whole animal world was sleeping. The birds in their nests and the bunnies in their burrows. Only ten minutes before that we were both very upset and i couldn’t see the end of the fight. It just shows how innocent little people are, and how their imagination can aid in distraction and distress. Thanks for the reminder for the morning when she dosent eat her cereal!
:) Heidi