Thursday, July 23, 2015

Twin Cousins.

While I was growing up, I felt lame because my favorite people (and best friends) were family members.

And now, I couldn't imagine my life any other way. Nor would I want it to be any different.

Most of the people I considered my best friends over time who I wasn't related to have come in and out of my life and they are ALWAYS a warm & happy part of my memories. At the time, though, I couldn't imagine my life without them.

I can see now what a supreme blessing it has been growing up next to my siblings and cousins... we're stuck with each other! And thank goodness for that.

The really great thing to look back on is how much our parents made sure we would get together as often as possible so that we could spend time with our aunts, uncles, grandparents, and cousins. I have to give credit to my mom and Aunt Jill for all they did to get us kids together... if they hadn't done that I might not be so close with my cousin Breanne. It's true that you don't fully understand or appreciate the things your parents do for you until you're a parent. Then it all begins to dawn on you how lucky you are to belong to the family you are part of.

It's Breanne's birthday today and it's days like these that cause me to reflect on just how thankful I am for her. I have taken our friendship for granted so much over time because it's just always been there because she has always been there.

She's always been a force for good in my life. Whether it was someone to just laugh with - which we have done a LOT of - or someone to sit, listen, and give advice from the heart... Breanne is someone who always seems to get me out of my own head and comfort zone. Heck, she even successfully talked me into dating Tony a million years ago! It also helps that we're so close in age and able to relate to each other so closely in that regard.

And now that we're moms - with two sets of kids that are just about the same age apart as we are! - we get to bond about pregnancy, labor, childbirth, breastfeeding, parenting, marriage, etc!!! (Bond... AKA vent!!!) I don't know what my life would look like without her and I'm glad to not know.

So... definitely photo overload on this post... but I couldn't seem to pick just a few of my favorites. Anyways, happy birthday to one super special person in my life... hope we're around to enjoy 27+ more years of each other! (Preferably a LOT more than 27 more!) Thank you for keeping me sane at every turn and for your friendship. We got lucky by being family but no one ever forced us to be friends and I promise to always be here for you, too.

Monday, July 13, 2015


Holy canoli... I have a one year old (and a three year old). This makes me so happy. And a bit melancholy. Molly's infancy went by in what can only be described as a blink of an eye. She went from being this tiny babe who you could set down, leave the room, and know she wouldn't move an inch to this little lady who eats everything you put down in front of her and is cruising around our couch already. It's hard to understand what there is to be sad about, then. She's growing up - just as every parent hopes for their child - but there is something bittersweet about your child outgrowing their babyness.

In the busyness of trying to get your child to be independent, you realize you're missing out on so many special moments of their life you may never get again.

And that's the part that breaks a parent's heart. How many more times will she fall asleep on me? How many more days will she be babbling instead of speaking more clearly? How much longer will she be sucking on her little hands and fingers? How much more often will she reach out to me when she wants me to hold her? I know that these little, beautiful moments will be replaced by new and amazing things for us to enjoy, but you never know when the last time will be the last until after it's already passed. And even then, it might not even register!

My beautiful one year old weighed in at 16#14oz. and measured 28.25 inches at her twelve month check-up. Once again, she is still below 5% for her size, I believe, but has gotten back on her growth curve (which she dropped off of at her 9 month check-up). Dr. Jones doesn't seem concerned about it and so I try not to worry either. Like I said before, she eats everything we give her - very heartily - and drinks a ton of breastmilk daily.

In addition to turning one, she was baptized in the Church as well. And from all our Catholic family members we heard "it's about damn time" plenty. ;)

It couldn't have been more different than Presley's baptism - but it was a beautiful day and it was great to share the moment with family. Molly looked so perfect in the dress I picked out just for her. She couldn't have looked any closer to an angel! And she smelled heavenly. Mol smelled like the christening oil for a week later and every morning I couldn't get enough of that smell on her. We couldn't have asked for her to behave any better, too. (Anne Marie and Presley on the other hand....)

Molly wants to do everything Presley does. This includes climbing, playing with all of Presley's toys, eating whatever Presley eats, and following her around the house. Presley is a champ with most of this but like any one else, she has her limits. But today Presley was hugging Molly and said, "Mom - me and Molly are best friends..." and I literally felt my heart burst on that one.

This kid loves bananas lately. And can really throw back some cherries, too! And she's like me when I was a kid... a little bread head!!! She's also super serious but she has really started to smile lately.

And it just brightens up a room! We got a family membership to the Children's Museum for her birthday and she loves it there. She also loves to scratch the hell out of our faces. And squeeze our faces. Like she genuinely seems to feel joy doing that. Sooo that's a little on the disturbing side but hey, we're working on it.

She tries to sing with us when the rest of us are singing... adorable. Did I mention she loves Presley?

We've got a toddler instead of a baby. I hate saying that. But I guess it's true. Even though - as cliche as it is - she is always always always going to be my baby.

Molly Lou - Miss Stinker Pants - we are so incredibly blessed by you. Every part of you is so special and unique and hilarious and spirited. You make the perfect addition to this family and I cannot imagine our lives without you, baby girl. Thank you for letting me love you and for loving me, too. It's a privilege I promise to never take for granted.