Over six years ago I purchased a couch. It had clean lines and was comfy. It came with tons of pillows and was just beautiful.
And it was barely off-white.
Do you know what moving does to an off-white couch? Do you know what a husband who has a tendency to spill his coffee does to an off-white couch? DO YOU KNOW WHAT CHILDREN DO TO AN OFF-WHITE COUCH?
It quickly becomes less off-white and more of a dirty wanna-be beige.
But I wasn't worried. I scoured Pinterest and decided that I would just dye the couch a new color. I WOULD JUST DYE IT A NEW COLOR.
I followed the directions explicitly, and decided to just dye the seat cushions first. And it went great! The color was like a foresty/bluish green color. The stains were being covered! Everything was perfect. Until it dried. And then the dye somehow disappeared. Except for the areas that were previously stained were now foresty/bluish green stains.
So then we got a slipcover. A horrible, cheap slipcover that didn't really fit the couch and got saggy after anyone breathed on the couch. A slipcover that made Ryan so irrationally angry at a polyester blend that one day it was ripped from the couch and a blanket was just sort of folded on the cushions.
At the same time, we got a kitten. Or found it in our garage and Ryan begrudgingly let us keep it. A kitten who decided that the pleather love seat that we had was the perfect scratching post despite being squired with water whenever she got near it.
We got a new couch. It's beautiful, kind, and sometimes I let the kids sit on it.
Friday, June 17, 2016
I'm entering my fourth month as a SAHM, and I'm exhausted.
Like, exhausted in ways that I never understood. I've been peed on. I've broken up more fights than I thought possible. Did you know it was possible to argue about cereal?
BECAUSE IT IS.
I've killed countless fish. We rescued a kitten. I've nearly passed out blowing up a baby pool. I have said the phrase "I'm not a short order cook"...which just lead to a line of questioning that I didn't expect. I've folded laundry, swept, mopped, meal planned, kept an organized family appointments calendar, loaded the dishwasher, and consumed more pots of coffee than my kidneys appreciate.
I've snuggled, played Legos, read books, "mined" for minerals, ran through sprinklers, played endless board games, and watched one of them really ride a bike for the first time. I've made muffins, pies, and brought meals to friends. I've kissed ouchies, cheered, and given Magical Dream Spells every night that the boys are home.
I am exhausted. In a way I couldn't ever imagine.
And it's been the absolute best gift that Ryan has ever given me.
Saturday, April 30, 2016
On March 20th, Ryan and I stood in front of our children, our families, and our friends to make our promises to each other.
Marrying your best friend and throwing a party to celebrate it is pretty much the best. You should really do it.
Saturday, January 30, 2016
Her breath is hot against my cheek, smelling like Cheerios. She nuzzles in, closer than I thought was humanly possible. Her sticky, chubby fingers grasp handfuls of my shirt, her chest rising and falling with each deep breath. Her stirring slows until she stops completely, finally content with the way her body meshes into mine.
My heart feels like it's going to beat out of my chest because I know that soon she will be chasing her brothers around the house, too busy to snuggle.
This is important.
Lazy afternoons with nothing but the delicious weight of a snoring baby on the agenda. Squeals from little boys eating gross jelly beans. Countless games of Uno and Candy Land. Watching the same tricks on the trampoline on repeat. Taking note of Halloween costume requests in February. Writing notes from the Tooth Fairy. Kissing boo-boos. Making school lunches. Reading bedtime stories.
This is what I want to remember.
Being a parent, being THEIR mom is more incredible than I could have ever imagined. Experiencing life through their eyes, watching them learn by trying new things, taking wobbly steps and getting to grow with them is a beautiful, messy gift.
And I wouldn't trade it for anything.
Monday, December 7, 2015
Have you ever had one of those moments where you meet someone and you just know that they are it?
He's missed work to stay home with the kids. He's taken Jonas to Boy Scouts. He helps them practice riding their bikes with no training wheels. He plays on jungle gyms, goes to school dances, and eats crappy pancakes at school fundraisers. He goes to every single tee ball practice and game.
He talks to them. He asks them questions that make them think. He works on school projects and homework with them. He has discussions about topics that not only are important to them now, but that will help shape who they become.
He helps remember to move the damn Elf on a Shelf religiously.
He believes in the magic of childhood. He holds living room dance parties. He cooks dinner, washes dishes, pours glasses of wine, and draws baths for me when my days are hard.
He plans for our future. College funds, goals, working hard to advance in his career- all for us.
No one has ever loved me so deeply, leaving me with a belly full of butterflies with just a glance from across the room. I never felt that I was good enough to be loved. I never fully understood what it meant to love and be loved.
Then I met him. And I knew.
Tuesday, June 2, 2015
After thirty two years of teaching small children, my Mom retired today.
Thirty two years. Thirty one of those in the same school, same classroom.
Her school has always been one of the lowest income schools in the city, which brings along additional challenges. She's personally purchased thousands of dollars worth of Angel Tree gifts over the years for kids in her school. For years she wrote a letter to each new student in her class; hundreds of kids in the area received their first piece of mail from Mrs. Breese. She let kids know that they mattered.
She demanded a lot from her students. Good behavior, listening, and basic manners were expected. Her "teacher look" terrified many a child (or unruly adult) into realizing that someone expected more out of them. She taught kids to realize that their actions mattered.
She made learning fun. Kindergarteners filled the hallways each January during Chinese New Year with their paper dragon and noise makers. They ate with chopsticks, did fun science experiments, and always had a classroom that was decorated with whatever theme they were learning about. She showed kids that learning wasn't limited to books and papers.
She's held students having seizures, bloody noses, and (basically) severed fingers. She's wiped noses, washed hands, and applied sunscreen for students. She let students know that someone would always be there for them.
She's taught the children of her former students. She's taught my friends...and most likely one of your friends, too. She's taught interns and acted as a mentor to her colleagues. She has single-handily impacted hundreds of people in Northwest Arkansas.
You made a difference even when you didn't think so, Mom.
Thursday, May 7, 2015
Growing up, I always said I wanted some absurd-when-not-a-fundie amount of children. The number always varied, but was never less than four.
Don't worry, this isn't a "SURPRISE! IRISH TWINS!" post, so y'all can relax (I'm looking at you, Ryan). Three is a great number of kids for our family, and I'm stoked that I get to be the Mom to these three rad kids.
The oldest kid, Jonas, turns six on Friday. I think that the first baby you have always holds a different place in your heart because they're the one that made you a parent. They're the one that you'll probably make the most mistakes with because every single day is uncharted territory. Sometimes you're too hard on them because you want them to be perfect-something you realize isn't possible because they're just tiny humans...and they need grace and space, too.
Jonas is one of the sweetest boys I know. He has the uncanny memory, able to recall things that happened once years ago. He's funny and so, so smart in a way that I will never understand.
The second kid, Noah, turns four in July. When you're the baby of the family for almost four years, you have this way of entertaining those around you. He's seriously one of the funniest people I know...his comedic timing is spot-on. He flips from being incredibly extroverted to hiding behind my legs when around new people. He's affectionate and very opinionated about everything.
And then there is the baby, Tallulah. God, she breaks my heart in a way I cannot begin to describe. The thought of going back to work is unbearable. She's the sweetest little baby, and wants to snuggle with her head under my chin...and I'm more than okay with that.
Being a Mom, being THEIR Mom, has been the absolute best thing I have ever done.