Wednesday, December 26, 2012

the things they say.....

Last night when we put the girls in their beds Adia says, "I love you Momma, can I help with the dishes and laundry tomorrow?!" I replied with, "Sure! As long as you go right to sleep".
Rasa, "I love you too Momma. Can I help with the laundry tomorrow too?"

I never thought of bribing the girls with chores to get them to go to sleep. I wonder how long the excitement of it all will last? ;)

Sunday, December 23, 2012

everyday things.....

Macy's 8th floor

We almost missed out on our annual Downtown Macy's 8th floor trip because of the flu. I'm so glad we didn't! My Mom and I brought the girls on Friday and we had a great time. The display has been the same for years but each year the girls notice more and more.

Our Santa visit was a success! Rasa was particularly excited to see him and had promised me she was going to sit on his lap. Even still I couldn't believe it when she actually did! Adia was more hesitant but my Mom plopped her down and she was okay (kind of!). The girls wanted to know if Santa had a puppy or a kitty at home so I asked him to tell the girls and he went into an elaborate story about how he had both and what they liked to do etc. He must have spent between 5 and 10 minutes with them. He was so unbelievably sweet! He asked the girls what they wanted for Christmas and Adia told him "a cabbage baby" to which he said, "Oh a Cabbage Patch Doll". When we got home she said, "Santa didn't get it right! He said Cabbage doll. I want a Cabbage Baby!" lol! I assured her he knew what she wanted.

After Santa, Nanna bought the girls a cookie and we went to the puppet show. That's always my favorite part :) We had lunch downstairs at Macy's and then headed over to Candyland so the girls could pick out a treat! Unicorn gross but I can see the appeal to kids!

It really was a lot of fun! One of the things I love about doing things with my Mom and the girls is how relaxed it always is, we do what we want, we're not afraid of crowds or how long it will take. We just want to have fun, so we do :)

Saturday, December 22, 2012

winter solstice 2012

"May the dawn of the Winter Solstice chase the dark away.
May it bring to you the promise of endless brand new days.
May all your sorrow vanish.
And all your dreams come true.
And may the light of the Winter Solstice always shine on you."
-Donna Fletcher

We had a nice cozy night in (it was bitter cold last night). We lit candles and snuggled on the couch. It felt like winter solstice here in our new place. It's cozy here and warm and I love how much more connected my family feels with the layout of this house.

I LOVE both Summer and Winter Solstice. I love the seasons here and can't imagine not having both extremes. Winter Solstice has a different feel to it than Christmas but it's warm and festive just the same and I look forward to it each year. Winter was always special to me as a child because eleven days after Christmas was my birthday. Now the girls birthday is just a little over a week after Christmas so we have a lot of things to celebrate! Plus, if you live in Minnesota and you can't celebrate the winter than it's going to be a long few months!

Thursday, December 20, 2012

the things they play.....

The girls play together all day, every day. Listening in on them is usually hilarious. They build off of each others ideas and come up with some pretty creative ways to play so I decided to start this, "the things they play" to document.

What sparked my idea was the following:

The girls were pulling things out from their bedroom into the living room getting all set up. The first thing to go on the floor was a boppy pillow. Adia told Rasa to get in position to which Rasa crouched down on the bobby all huddled up. Adia covered her entirely with a blanket and then proceeded to sit on her, like a chicken on an egg. After a few seconds Adia jumped off and out emerged Rasa from under the blanket chirping like a baby bird. Adia screams! "My baby bird! You hatched!"

the things they say......

Rasa had a terrible stomach flu that had her vomiting non stop for twelve hours and landed her in the ER.

Me: Rasa do you wanna call Nana and tell her how much better you are feeling?

Rasa: I don't wanna talk right now. Just send her a text.

After the girls first day of Preschool we were walking out of school and to the car.

Me: Wasn't that fun?! Did you have a good time?

Adia: It wasn't REALLY cool but it was kinda cool.

Friday, December 7, 2012

school talk....and a mix of feelings...

Time seemed to sit still for me for about a year. The girls were getting bigger but our lives seemed to stay the same. Staying home with them hasn't been easy. Some days are just plain painful.

From toddlerhood to preschool aged brings new challenges more frustrating than ever before and once again Royce and I find ourselves clueless, trying to create new ways to deal with behavior and also trying to continue to live in the moment and enjoy the girls at every age and stage.

I've been fighting feelings of really wanting to work more and have the girls in daycare part time. Working from home and staying home full time during the week made things harder. I felt less of a Mom and more frustrated trying to balance out getting work done and prioritizing my families needs. I kept thinking to myself, I can't wait for school to start. I feel a little guilty that this fall passed us by with me having too much work and not enough time to spend cherishing the excitement of new experiences that has always recharged my mommmy battery.

Then it hit me: this is my last year full time with my kids. Free to do as we please whatever day we want to. Knowing that school is just around the corner and it will be so much different as we shift from home life to school life. I have regret. A lot of it. I wish I would have had endless amounts of patience and creativity. Why didn't I do more of this or that with them when I had the chance, etc. Why can't I be perfect. They deserve that. I know it's not real but it doesn't make me want it any less.

We did kindergarten screening two weeks ago and then decided one day a week school would be good for them. It would give them the opportunity to be away from me. To experience new things, new kids, new learning experiences. To grow and be confident, to push them a little outside of their comfort zones and in return fill them with the confidence they need right now to know they can do it. I'm so happy we are doing this. Rasa, especially, has just shined and we've watched her in two weeks turn from a timid little mouse to an outgoing happy girl that is even more eager than ever to show us what she's capable of. Adia has been a little reluctant. Wanting to be held more. Wanting to talk more about when she was a baby. I'm watching her closely, picking her up more and telling her how proud I am of her.

Today the girls, my Mom and I toured our first choice for PreK. It's a wonderful wonderful school in the Seward neighborhood with two amazing teachers and a classroom that's both Montessori and has a warm Waldorf feel and practices. Exactly what we dreamed of for the girls. Such an easy transition from the home to school. Originally I thought we would do two days a week but after talking to the teachers today they think they should do three days minimum because of their age (because of them having winter birthday's they'll be some of the older kids in the class when in school). Whoa. Three days of school a week huh. They're not my babies anymore. They're going to be school kids.

We have selected our first choice for Kindergarten and it's five days a week so it makes sense to have them in PreK three days. My mind can't even wrap around the thought of shipping them off to school every day of the week but I have a feeling they'll be ready for it, and if they're not we'll find a place that suites them better.

I'm excited for them! I really am but maybe the overwhelming feeling I'm having is a loss for myself. I'm not a helicopter parent. I don't want to hold my kids hands in college or anything like that. I just didn't expect time to go this quickly. I truly believed that if I forced myself to live in the moment with them I wouldn't feel a loss for them as they grew. I do though. You never dream the things that drive you crazy and seem so painful are the things that you're going to miss. I hated having to rock the girls to sleep every night until they were 2. I wanted them to go to bed, lay down and just sleep! Every night we spent two hours getting them to sleep! Now I cry a little every time I think about it because I would do just about anything to sit in their room in the quiet night and hold them, sing and rock them safely and sweetly off to sleep.

Thursday, December 6, 2012

happy saint nicholas day!

The girls left their shoes outside their bedroom door waiting for chocolate from Saint Nicholas in the morning and were excited when they woke up to have them filled with little Santa foil wrapped chocolates.

Tonight we're gong to get the girls ready for bed and surprise them with a christmas lights tour of the city! We got popcorn cups and hot chocolate to make it extra fun :)

Happy Saint Nicholas Day!

Wednesday, December 5, 2012

Festive weekend!

I had eleven sessions last weekend to wrap up my busy season and I enlisted the help of Royce and the girls to help make things run more smoothly and welcome clients while they waited. Royce was huge help with set up and tear down of the studio (even though I decided to shoot outside after all) and clients had a good time. The girls helped me with test shots and also to put some of the timid little clients at ease. It was a busy working weekend but having my family around me made it really fun.

The Gordon family decided to start a new tradition this year of meeting up at the Holidazzle to get the cousin's together and just do something fun before Christmas. We made a quick hot chocolate run before we left and were off to downtown. Josh, Suzanne, Olivia, Owen, My Parents, Royce, the Girls and I all had a wonderful time at the parade and we went to Nye's in Northeast after for a late dinner.
The kids had so much fun playing and dancing and dinner was wonderful. It was a perfect end to our weekend.