Tuesday, January 21, 2014


Yesterday we took advantage of the springish winter weather and headed out to wander.

One day, we will walk out our back door to a place like this.

But for now, we jump in the car and drive until we find a place to fill up our souls and tire out our legs.

Saturday, January 18, 2014

Dear Lulah {month 10}

Dear Lulah,

Sweet baby girl, or rather...bear cub.  This is what your Papa and I refer to you as.  You are our very own bear cub.  You are such a nuzzler and snugly little thing.  And when you are feeling playful, it's straight up wildlife video.  You paw and pounce and grunt and snort, all with a little smirk on your face.  A little cub rolling around on her mama.

However, when set in motion my little cub, you still take on the animal spirit of a three toed sloth.  Your confidence and skill has not increased your speed.  It seems you have inherited your Mama's creed of  'slow and steady'.  And I'll go ahead and tell you, it really doesn't win any races.  You have the most precious, focused, lumbering crawl.  The whole house can hear your steady beat when you're on the move.  But Lulah, it's a good pace.  It's easier to take it all in, savor the small stuff.  And you do.  In the mornings, you start your laps.  From the living room you move into the dining room, preferring the under the table route.  You pause to eat any crumbs left on the floor (or really anything left on the floor), then you continue to mosey on into the sun room.  You hang a left, pull up on the dollhouse and then maybe rearrange a few of your sister's 'decorations'.  You look around for me to acknowledge how awesome your new mobile freedom is and with a huge grin you drop back to your knees and move on to the play kitchen.  After a few pots are thrown around and the oven gets opened and closed 27 times, you decide to continue on with your trek.  Next stop is through our kitchen and straight to the fridge to knock down as many magnets as you can.  And then repeat.  

We're also going on 2 or so weeks of you sleeping in your crib at night in your sister's room.  You still end up in our bed in the wee hours of the morning sometimes to nurse, but sometimes just to cuddle.  I don't mind.  You snuggle like no other.  Lulah, I can not tell you how much I love that you are already sharing a room with your sister.  So many special memories await you.  I lay you in your crib and hear you find that thumb.  Quietly I carry in Lucy and we lay down in her bed, minutes later she's asleep.  Listening to the night time breathing of both my girls, I slip out with a heart full and content.

You are changing.  You are getting longer, stronger, more balanced.  You are gaining more confidence and stronger opinions.  But your sweetness?  It's still as tangible to me as it was on day one.  And your roundness?  I can't stop kissing your roundness.  No lines, no angles...just round.  


Friday, January 3, 2014

Finishing a project and looking ahead...

November 2012 I started a photo project.  My plan was to take one picture a day of Lucy.  I wrote about my motives, here.

And you know what?  It worked.  

When there were days I felt overwhelmed, moments when this two year old was making this baby thing hard, I could scroll back through these pictures and with a smile on my face whisper, 

‘Man I wouldn’t have this any other way.’

They would bring me out of my pity party and remind me of my reality.  My truth.  And that is that I have this amazing, hilarious, beautiful little girl who keeps my days colorful and interesting and full of joy.  And that my baby gets to have this strong, creative, and caring little girl as her big sister.  And that they will have each other for the rest of their lives.  And the stress and the pull and the demands of mothering…well they seem more like a privilege.

And I certainly do not mean to imply that all of this is a one time realization and then that’s it, and I live in that happy place.  I wish that were the case.  There are many different ways to help us remember the gift that is motherhood.  But for me, it is my photographs that bring me back so quickly and easily.  I have quite often heard and read thoughts on putting down the camera to be fully in the moment and I have thought about how that applies to my life.  

But this little project made me realize that for me, the camera has the opposite effect.  It has trained me to see details I think I might have otherwise missed.  It’s become a way for me to ‘list’ my joys.  To capture a small slice of what makes up this season of life.  And the ‘A Lucy Life’ project has been such a sweet and simple way to not only keep me in the moment but to slow this time down so it doesn’t fly past me in a haze.

By the way, if you are wondering the significance of starting the year on November 21, there is none.  One thing I’ve learned about myself is that if I come up with some grand idea and plan on doing it at some future date, it’s more likely to never happen.  So when an idea strikes, I have to go for it.  Hence, a start date of November 21.

So closing out 2013, what does my 2014 look like? 
There’s the specifics like, build a new raised bed for a flower garden and plan our out West trip this spring.  There’s also some general stuff like, dating my husband, and more family outings and adventures with our girls.  And there’s the me stuff, more photos, more writing and reading, more creating, more time with my Savior.

But for the most part, my yearly goals look pretty different then they did 10 or even 5 years ago.  It used to be about planing backpacking adventures or cross country road trips.  Grand plans with high expectations.  My new definition of adventure is quite hilarious to me now, but surprisingly as fulfilling.  Now it's less about the grand, and more about being adaptable.  Living a little less spontaneous, but living more intentional.  To sum up, I've seen this floating around the web and thought it was perfectly stated:

So there you go.  I'm excited for another year.  Another year of growth in my girls.  Another year of loving my husband.  Another year to grow older and hopefully wiser.

Looking back full of thankfulness, and looking forward with hope and excitement.

(To see the photos and captions in full, you can go here.  Don't be confused by the tumblr dates, taking a picture a day was no problem, posting them each day was another thing!)