This is Micah. Believe it or not, she’s three and a half. I honestly cannot believe how quickly the past year has flown by. One minute, I was writing all about her adventures as a rambunctious little two and a half year old, and the next minute an entire year had passed. How is that possible?
At any rate, since I devoted an entire post to Kendall the other day, I figure it’s only fair to devote another one to Micah. Attention hog that she is, I’m sure she would agree.
My little girl loves, I mean LOVES playing dress up. The tackier the better. Most days, as soon as she’s finished with breakfast, she heads for her dress up bin and starts piling on the layers. In case you were wondering, as long as it matches your tutu, a Santa hat is always in season.
She’s one big ball of energy. The girl never slows down. If I get a decent picture of her, it’s nothing short of a miracle. She’s constantly on the go. She’s a girly girl, for sure, but she’s not afraid to get sweaty either. She loves playing outside, kicking the soccer ball, and running hither and yon.
Unless of course, she’s zoned out watching Sofia the First with her babies, which, by the way, is one of her favorite pasttimes. She’s been playing “Mama” for a long time, and she thinks she has it all down pat. I learn a lot about myself when I hear her talking to her babies. The girl repeats verbatim things I say to her all the time. Which means that she does, in fact, hear me, even if she pretends that she doesn’t.
She’s a really good big sister. She loves Kendall, and she gets a major kick out of making her little sister giggle. No one can make Kendall laugh like Micah. Kendall adores her big sister, and for good reason. Micah can be so sweet when she wants to be. Fortunately, most of the time she wants to be sweet to her sister. That will probably change in years to come :)
She loves drawing, and, recently she’s actually started to draw pictures instead of just scribbling on the page. For a long time, she refused to attempt to draw anything. She would hand me a crayon and ask me to draw a picture of a house…or a little girl…or a flower…or a sun…but she wouldn’t even attempt to do so herself. Then all of a sudden one day while I was filling some orders in the etsy shop, I looked up, and she had drawn a picture of the two of us, complete with a rainbow over our heads. She never ceases to amaze.
I love this little girl. She thinks I’m amazing, but I know the truth: she’s far more amazing than I will ever be. I pray that she never loses the sparkle in her big blue eyes – that she never takes herself too seriously – that she will always be her sister’s protector – and most of all, that she would grow into a young woman who loves and serves the Lord with all of her heart.
This little lady makes me laugh daily. She reminds me to just let go and live a little. She has brought such joy into my life, and I love her so.
Until next time, grace and peace.
Newsflash: Mother’s Day is coming up soon and will be here before you know it – May 12th, to be exact. This year, I’ve designed a freebie for you that’s directly drawn from something my little girl tells me every day, at least 37 times a day.
Over the past several months, Micah has dubbed all girls amazing and all boys awesome. She routinely calls out to me while she’s playing just to remind me that I’m amazing.
This is how the conversation goes:
Micah: “Hey Mama!”
Me: “What is it, baby?”
Micah: “You’re amazing!”
Me: “You’re amazing too, Micah.”
Micah: “I know.”
As you can imagine, it’s pretty amazing for my self esteem.
In honor of my self-assured little girl, I’ve created a free printable Mother’s Day card for all of you who have mothers as amazing as me :)
Until next time, grace and peace.
THE SMALL PRINT: You may not accept credit for the design of this card or sell it to anyone. Felicity Paper retains the copyright. If you wish to share the digital file with others, please direct them to this post. Do not e-mail the file all over the world. Please don’t link directly to the download file. Click to download your Free Printable Amazing Mama Card!Pin It
When Dennis and I first moved into our house in Iuka, we were excited to be out of our cramped little apartment and have a little bit of space to move around. Then we started walking through the yard and noticed that where there should have been grass, there was a thick layer of dandelions. And, in case you didn’t know, dandelions are like the black plague of landscaping. They’re tough little boogers to get rid of.
Right now, I’m realizing that pride has taken root in my heart like a yard full of dandelions. It’s a sneaky thing, really, because you don’t realize how dangerous it is and how deeply its roots have burrowed until you start trying to rip them out.
My most recent battle with pride has to do with my girls. When others gush over my girls’ gorgeous blue eyes (they are stunning, if I do say so myself) and praise Micah’s smarts (because she’s a child genius, y’all) or Kendall’s laid-back personality (who doesn’t love an easy-going baby?), I swell with pride. And not just a little bit of pride. It’s a lot of it.
If it were just those things that I’m prideful over, it might not be so bad, but it goes deeper than that.
For three and a half years I’ve gloated over the relatively good health of my kids. As if I had anything to do with it. Seriously. Micah NEVER got an ear infection as a baby. She was rarely sick, and when she did come down with a cold, she bounced back quickly. Other people’s children suffered from chronic ear infections and were always sick, but not mine. My kids were perfect, and I was proud of it.
Until now. When Micah came home from preschool in early December with a nagging cough, I never dreamed that we would still be battling its lingering effects two months later. And yet, here we are. First it was Micah. Then it was me. We both hacked and sniffled for nearly a month before the antibiotics finally did their work and we got better.
But then Kendall started coughing. And then she got her first little ear infection and took her first round of antibiotics. Ever. And then the ear infection came back, so we stepped it up to the next level of antibiotics. Ten days of that, and I thought she’d be better (because my kids ALWAYS bounce back), but over the weekend, she started going downhill AGAIN, so I took her back to the doctor yesterday morning.
Guess what? The infection is back and worse than ever before. Her poor little eardrum is so swollen that it’s on the verge of rupture.
And I nearly cried. Especially when I realized that I was taking these ear infections personally. I’m ashamed to admit that they have seriously wounded my pride. Yes, I’m concerned about my daughter and her health, but I’m also concerned about my track record as a parent, and that’s shameful.
The crazy thing is, I know how ridiculous this all sounds. It’s stupid for me to be prideful of my daughters’ health because the truth is that their wellness has nothing to do with me and everything to do with the grace of God. The only reason that we have enjoyed three and a half years without any major issues is because the Lord has willed it so. Period.
As a mom, it’s far too easy to take credit for how great my kids are, even if I have nothing to do with whatever it is that people are praising. My greatest temptation is to pass off the work of the Lord as my own – to accept all the credit when really, all the glory is due to Him alone.
It’s no secret that the baby years are hard for me. When I see other mothers floating through the early months of their kids’ lives on a fluffy pink cloud of bliss, I want to gag. I always assume that they’re just pretending. The reason that I assume that? Well, in my experience, God has used both marriage and motherhood as chisels, chipping away at my character and removing anything that doesn’t reflect His likeness.
Apparently, there was a lot of junk that needed to be cleared away, and, in case you’re wondering, it’s not exactly fun. It’s painful. But hey, I’ve heard that the first step to recovery is admitting that you have a problem. So this is my confession. My name is Leslie Ann Jones, and I’m a recovering pride-a-holic.
When stuff like this happens, I am reminded that God is still working on me. Right now He’s helping me realize that the pride that I have tolerated for so long has taken root in my heart, and it’s time to do something about it. Thankfully, He’s pretty good at wrenching out things that don’t belong.
Until next time, grace and peace.
Sometimes I feel like my entire life is tied up in whether or not my children get enough sleep. Any mom out there will know what I’m talking about. Or maybe it’s just me.
Kendall is generally easy enough to get to sleep. She’s taking three naps a day and goes to sleep on her own at night. Her problem isn’t going to sleep. It’s staying asleep. She routinely wakes up 45 minutes into her nap, wide awake and ready to play. Then she’s exhausted just 30 minutes later, but unable to settle down. She wakes in the middle of the night and early in the morning with no intention of going back to sleep without intense cajoling. One night last week it lasted for two and a half hours. Let that sink in. For two and a half hours, she was wide awake, either screaming or thinking about screaming. It was not fun. For the past week she’s been stirring between 4 and 5 a.m. wide awake and raring to go. That’s just a bit earlier than I’m willing to get up in the mornings.
Micah, on the other hand, sleeps like a rock. Her problem is going to sleep. I can feel the dread of naptime approaching when it’s still hours away. I know what will happen. I’ll give her a five-minute warning. I’ll set the timer and tell her that when it goes off, it’s time for a nap. Sometimes, she instantly complies, cleaning up her toys and docilely following me to her room, where we’ll read a story, and I’ll gently tuck her in. She’ll give me a hug and kiss, I’ll give her a pat and leave the room. Only to come back five minutes later to discover her surrounded by a pile of books on her bed, quietly resisting a nap. Other times, she flat out refuses to get ready for a nap and throws herself into a rage before we even head to the bedroom. I end up taking away all of her favorite baby dolls, her blankies, and her dream lite every single day before she finally gives it up and goes to sleep. The same thing usually happens at bedtime.
A few nights ago, Dennis and I were sitting in the den, preparing to go to bed ourselves. It was 10:03 when Micah came bebopping into the room. She was wearing a princess gown over her pajamas. She had a crown on her head, a string of Mardi Gras beads around her neck, and one cheap plastic clip-on earring dangling from her right ear. She stuck out her bottom lip as she handed me the other earring and said, “Mama, my eaw-wing bwoke. Can you fix it?”
I just looked at her in shock. Seriously, kid? She had been playing silently in her room for TWO ENTIRE HOURS, and she really expected me to fix the blasted earring? At that moment, I decided that her dress-up clothes probably shouldn’t live in her closet anymore. You can imagine how well that went over.
I’m not really sure how I became this sleep-obsessed mom – I only know that if my kids don’t get enough of it, then it’s all over. I will fiercely protect naps and sequester my girls in the house if something threatens their rest. I’m sure that some people think I’m crazy, but I also know that my sweet little girls turn into raging little monsters if they don’t get enough sleep. I suppose they get that from me.
At any rate, we’ve been going through a rough patch lately. Neither of my girls are sleeping particularly well, and it’s starting to wear on me. As I mentioned before, sleep and I are really good friends. I don’t respond well when our time together is interrupted.
Sigh. I know many of you can commiserate with me. I’m looking forward to the days when they’re a bit older and I can stop worrying so much about the amount of time that their eyes are closed each day. Of course, I’m sure there will be something else to worry about then. It’s just one of the many joys of motherhood. We’ve gotta have something to worry about. And right now, it’s sleep.
Anyone else dealing with sleep issues with their kiddos? I’d love to hear about your experiences in the comments section.
Until next time, grace and peace.
It’s hard to know what to say now that I’ve finally decided to take the plunge and resurrect this blog. I really didn’t mean to drop off the face of the planet in February. It just sort of happened. And then, the longer I said nothing, the harder it became to pick up where I left off. And now, it’s November and crickets have been chirping here for eight months!
Sorry bout that, y’all.
I’ll try not to let it happen again, but I’m offering no guarantees.
Instead, I’ll try to hit the highlights of the past eight months of my life. Then we’ll get on to business as usual.
I had a baby. Isn’t she sweet? Last time I wrote, I was still reeling from the unexpected news that I was pregnant. Now I have a 4-month-old little girl that I can’t imagine life without. Kendall arrived a couple of weeks early (unlike her sister, who debuted a week late), and I did it au naturale. Maybe someday I’ll tell you about it.
I renamed and rebranded my stationery business. Goodbye Senojal Designs. Hello Felicity Paper. The change was a long time coming, and I couldn’t be happier with the result. I wanted a name that (a) people could actually pronounce and (b) reflected my business goals. I’ll tell you more about that later.
Micah turned three. This picture is from her “fancy schmancy” third birthday party, which was heavily inspired by Fancy Nancy books. It’s hard to believe that my baby is now a big girl who constantly tells me what she’s going to do when she grows up. Slow down, sister! Please. Your mama needs you to.
I survived. That may not seem like a big deal to some of you, but it’s gargantuan to me. There are some women who flourish and glow their way through the newborn stages. I’m not one of them. It’s hard for me. It was especially hard to figure out how to parent my toddler with a baby that demanded my attention. We had a lot of moments like the one pictured above, and unlike the picture, I wasn’t always smiling. But we’re getting there. As Kendall gets older, life gets easier, and I’m finally able to come up for air. In case you were wondering, it’s nice to breathe again.
I promise to be back sooner rather than later this time. It’s my goal to write once a week. If I can master that, we’ll shoot for twice a week.
Until next time, grace and peace.
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