Finally...it's naptime and I'm settling into my seat at the computer, ready to write again. Because I treat this blog as our family journal, I get sad when I'm not keeping up with it as I'd like to. I feel like I'm missing all of these great memories we're making and THAT is something I'm not a fan of!
I might start this post off by saying that this is the first of many writings I will be doing in our new home of Wisconsin! Isn't that exciting?!? I am so thrilled to finally be here and to know that we are going to make a life here for a very long time to come. The way that God has orchestrated all of these things working out is beyond me. Seriously...five days ago, I moved into a house I had never seen but just trusted that this was where He wanted us until we could find a place that would last us a while. What kind of mom in her right mind moves her kids somewhere she has never seen and knows nothing about?!? But you know what? It's perfect. It's a lovely farmhouse, on the most beautiful piece of property I've ever lived on. Our back living room window looks out onto a quiet lake and so far, in our short time here, we've seen deer, turkeys and watched two hawks screech and chase each other. This place is incredible.
The only thing I'm struggling with a bit is that our kids don't seem to be transitioning as well as I wish they would. Their behavior is out of this world. On Sunday, our first day at Westbrook, they were out of control. I could have dug a hole in the ground, crawled in and cried. Because that wasn't an option, Jake and I just looked at each other and, without words, asked each other who in the world these kids belonged to. They could not be our kids!
Watching them struggle is the hardest thing for me as their mom because I just want to fix it. What can I do to make this better for them? What am I doing that is helping or hurting them? And then, because I'm their mom, I get that mom guilt. I feel guilty for moving them. I feel guilty for pulling Cole out of school when it was so obvious that was where he was thriving the most. I feel guilty he's not getting that stimulation and socialization anymore. I feel guilty that I haven't spent a ton of time with them lately because there has been so much packing and then unpacking to do. I feel guilty that I get impatient with them when they get into boxes and things even though I know they're just curious. I feel guilty that I haven't taken the time to talk to them about all of these big changes. Ahhh!!!!! The list goes on and on. Basically, I've just decided to spend as much one on one time with them these next couple of days that I can. So far, we've played dress up, we sang and danced together, we've read books and Cole has read to me. And our day has gone unbelievably better so far.
Jake and I are working on our family motto/mission statement/beliefs. Whatever you want to call it, that's what we're working on. There are some very key things I want to be included in there but not so many that it gets overwhelming. If anyone has done this and has some suggestions, we welcome them! I'll be sure to post about it once we've got it put together. I just want our kids to always have a firm foundation about what our family is all about...what we stand for and what we work hard to uphold. I want it to be something they can be proud of and something they want to strive for. I am working really hard to make our parenting and our family values intentional instead of just getting through our days. If this is what God has called me to, this is what I need to pour myself into, right? After all, these are only my kids for a little while but they're His forever. I need to make sure I'm giving Him and them my very best. It's a lot of work, but what isn't a lot of work that reaps a great reward in the end?
Last, but not least, I'm sad to report that I am officially the mother of no babies. Laina is growing before my eyes and as hard as I try to freeze time and keep her just this way for just a little bit longer, it just isn't working. The older kids remind me often that she is a "tawd-wer" and I hate to say that they are so right...she is very quickly filling her crib and talking in sentences and eating with a fork and spoon. I couldn't wait for Cole and the girls to grasp these concepts but her? I just want to keep her squishy cheeks and sweet snuggles forever. She just fell asleep in my arms before lunch and I sang and rocked her to sleep. Those moments happen fewer and farther between and I cherish every one. Some day she won't want to sit on my lap or she'll just outgrow it entirely. Some day she won't carry around her blankie or ask for her paci. It's funny how a fluffy, pink cloth and the sound of her sucking on her pacifier can soothe me too. I want to remember this as one of the joys of motherhood that often gets lost in the hustle and bustle of every day. Today was just a great moment of stopping and resting with my baby...my toddler.
I love this picture of Laina and Maurah. For some reason, I never get good pictures of Maurah which is so sad because that girl is so stinking gorgeous. So this was a real treat to have them together. Aren't they just beautiful?
Hopefully I will get some pictures of the house up soon. I've got other happenings to catch up on too, like three birthday parties and then trying to do some Easter traditions with the kids. If I don't post before though, have a happy Easter!