Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Baby love~

Ainsley the lovely from Summer '09
Can't sleep but not for the usual reasons. I'm a sleeper! Love my rest and the only time I'm ever up is because I'm thinking and re-thinking things way too much or I've had some caffeine deliciously disguised in chocolate treat. Today, it's the latter.

Ainsley love is on my mind. We sure had some sweet moments together today. She didn't nap long or really at all if anyone was counting...maybe a 45 minute snooze which is just amateur for her. So when I heard her calling for me mid-afternoon I was at first a little bummed to find my alone time cut short, but secretly I was elated that we'd have some time just we two. This love is growing so fast. Her baby looks are muted now, trumped by her budding preschooler appearance. But she's just all baby to me. My baby. I guess when you know it's your last one you just hang on for dear life. At least that's what it feels like to me. So much of me wants to bottle her tiny-ness and keep her little. But I don't know why exactly. It's not like I don't positively adore mothering a five year old anymore than her. Each stage has its own rewards... but there's nothing like a baby love. No one like Ainsley.

So we cuddled a good bit today. Her long legs wrapped around my waist. I gladly made dinner with one hand, refusing to forfeit my prize for a nap-less day. More hugs from the girl. Her downy hair smells so good. Her skin so silky. I love how she wants to *help* me with things. And sometimes in her desire to help she'll hand me things I have absolutely no need for in that moment -- such as a jar of pickles as I'm mashing up potatoes. But I can't resist the way she says "You're welcome" after I graciously thank her. Her lilting voice goes up so high at the end of her phrasing like she's the happiest southern belle in Texas... but of course we live in Minnesota - which makes it all the more endearing.

Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Right on Target

So last night we took a family trip to Target before bedtime. Don't hate us for our cosmopolitan lifestyle. But there we were, cart full of all manner of items, and ready to head home...when Emie got an idea. Now this is not altogether uncommon, for the girl to get an idea and certainly not uncommon for her to have an idea for fun. She suggested that we all head to the Target cafe for some refreshment. You can probably guess that this was not something that Dirk or I would readily file in the fun category... but the girl is persuasive and it is hard to resist unmitigated cuteness. Emie sees a bistro, a chophouse, a bar and grill where the rest of the world sees a hot dog stand.

So we ordered up some fruit (and I do use the term quite loosely) smoothies and gathered around the formica. Well Emie was probably the only one who wasn't surprised to find that it was incredibly fun. Staring across the table into those precious faces was enough to melt me to a puddle. And they looked back at us with the joy of lottery winners as they sipped their treats through plastic straws looking into the faces of some of their favorite people: us their lucky parents. Life is rich indeed.

Well Dirk seemed to be feeling the joy as well since it wasn't long before he had made his way up to a poster size print of a glass of bubbly pop. And, to rave reviews he stood sideways next to it pretending to drink it down in big gulps. I thought I might need a bathroom run I was laughing so hard. Now it doesn't seem that funny right now but in the moment it was the greatest. Emie, not be outdone made her way up to a poster size print of popcorn an pretended to shovel it into her mouth by the fists-full. Ainsley love was laughing so hard I thought she might slide right off of her little stool.

I will remember that night for a long time. The kind of night that makes the sometimes long days especially full. The kind of day that makes you eager for tomorrow. But what I hope I don't ever forget is what I learned from the resident five year old. The lesson that plans are best held loosely. That sometimes for all of our adherence to schedule and routine we often miss the most hilarious fun of the spontaneous.

This is why...

Cracked up last night when I found these two dolls. I picked them up before Christmas as stocking stuffers and wasn't sure which cherub to give them to. I was leaning toward Emie because she's a bit more genteel (shall we say) in her handling of toys. But Ainsley does love a dolly so I hadn't decided.

As I unpacked everything on Christmas eve once the girls were well into REM and visions of sugarplums Mary and I had the following exchange:

Me: Aren't these the dollys cute?
Mary: Sooo cute!
Me: Maybe I should give both of these dolls to Emie instead of Ainsley - she'd love them.
Mary: (Ever the advocate of the underdog youngest child) Why not give some to Ainsley so she can also have something special?

This is why!!!


Wednesday, January 19, 2011

New Year

First post of the year... twenty days in. As much as I love to write and love to mother I can't seem to find the time to do both. Or at least find the time to write about doing the other. In any I am.

Christmas seems like a long time ago. Sweet memories in my heart. The girls are at the ages where it's pure magic. Finding their stockings filled really is like looking at a burning bush to them...or something equally supernatural. They make me want to be young at heart. Make we want to believe. And I do, I am.

Last night I attended the local Kindergarten round-up. Time to send my precious Emie off to school. Sniff. I know I'll be a hot mess on the first day of school in the fall... missing her wildly. She's so ready and so excited so truly I shouldn't have an ounce of concern for myself. Once again, it's not about me. Dang it any old way. Our district only has a half day option - at least that's the only free option. There is a full day "experience" available for the cost of a decent used car. I'm actually considering it. There's an additional option where resident pupil goes a full day a couple of days a week and half days the remainder of the week...also for a fee. This is something I'm considering as well. I think the additional structure could do us all a world of good. We'll see what comes.

Ainsley will go to preschool as well two days a week. Crazy to imagine but indeed it's true. She's still my baby girl though her third birthday is seven months away. When people guess her age at three I'm quick to retort "She's only two." Don't grow my baby up too fast now. It happens fast enough without anyone's encouragement.

Yesterday Emie and I had this exchange which I found so endearing:

Em: Mommy, when I'm all bigger will I have babies?
Me: If you want them then I do hope God blesses you and you will.
Em: Oh, I want them!
Me: (Smile)
Em: But how will I know who to pick for the daddy?
Me: Well, that's the best part. You don't have to pick. God picks the daddy for you and sends you just the right person to be your husband. Just like he did with me and your daddy.
Em: But I think I'd like to pick Wyatt.
Me: I think that's a great choice. (smile)