Tuesday, January 6, 2015

Christmas 2014

Christmas always seems to come and go in such a hurry every year.  I tried to really take time and enjoy my little family and not worry about getting everything picture perfect.
In fact, the only pictures I snapped all week were from the kids opening their annual new pajama gift that night before bed.

I admit... I got a little teary eyed thinking about how different next December is going to be.  With Andrew deciding to go away to college, it will mean waiting on  him to come home.  It's the last year of all my babies living at home.

And now, it's time for a fresh start and the new year.

Friday, January 2, 2015


I always knew I wanted to be a mother.  Yes, I had other aspirations and dreams but being someone's mother was always at the top of my list.

And then one day, that dream became a reality and I found out I was indeed going to have a baby.  I was still so much of a kid myself and no where near mature enough for the emotional responsibility I was undertaking.   But if nothing else, I am head strong, bull headed and refused to give up simply because someone thought I couldn't do it.  Psh, I'll show them, I thought.  Each day of my pregnancy, I felt more and more of my own childhood slipping away.  The more my belly grew, the more of an adult I felt until that moment I pushed my son into this world.  I was someone's mother.    I was YOUR mother.

They were right, you know.  It was incredibly hard, but it was also worth it.  Being a teenage mom shaped me in ways that I'm not even sure how to put into words.  It was the single most defining moments of my life.  And looking at what a wonderful young man he's grown into, I don't think I've done too bad of a job. It wasn't done alone though.  I couldn't have accomplished it without the support of my family and meeting the amazing man who stepped up to be a father when he didn't have to.

Preparing for this birthday of the one who made me a Mom has been more difficult than I would like to admit.   It's a major milestone.  My baby is no longer a child.  At eighteen, he's considered an adult.   Although in so many ways, he is very much a child.

Dearest A,

This birthday is a major milestone.  It marks the beginning of your adult years.  And while the number may reflect that legally you are a man, in my eyes you will always be my little boy.

I am so proud of the person you are growing into.  And I admit, when our friends compliment you or comment on what a nice young man you are,  my pride swells because I'd like to think I had something to do with that.  Because as much as you are your own individual, as your mom I see you as a reflection of me.  And I'm working on only seeing you as the person you are, I promise.   It's still so hard not to simply see my little boy who would ask for cookies every night before bed and had to have his blankie where ever he would go.

We've grown up together, you and I.   I certainly haven't been an adult the entire time you were in my life, but we figured it out together.  It has been a hell of a roller coaster but I wouldn't trade it for the world.

There are moments I catch myself just staring at you.. from across the room, at the table or simply from the corner of my eye in the car.  I can't believe you've grown into such a funny, smart and kind human being.  It feels like it happened over night.  I closed my eyes holding my sweet toddler and when I opened them a grown man stood before me.  You have given me so many great things to be proud of, but none greater than simply being my son.

It has been so much fun getting to know you.  The nights I sat rocking you and breathing in that new baby smell, I wondered who you were going to be.  What type of man you would be.

It turns out, you aren't entirely different now than you were as a toddler.  You do things on your own time and not when someone else thinks you should.   You have a laugh that's infectious.  It's one of those deep, full laughs that make me smile when I hear it.   You're so very loving and never one to turn down a hug, even if it's from your mother in public.

And now with college in your near future, here is a bit of motherly advice- some of which I was told at your age, some I've picked up along the way-  all things I wish I had listened to at 18.

  • Anything worth doing, is worth doing well.  
  • Never leave the house without wearing a clean pair of underwear. 
  • Manners, while seem small and insignificant, will carry you far in life.  The simple act of saying please, thank you, holding the door for others and offering your seat when someone walks into the room says volumes about your character. 
  • Your parents are only a phone call away even if it's 3 am. 
  • Mistakes do not define us.  We all make them.  They are teachable moments.   Learn from them and move on. 
  • Treat every young lady with the respect she deserves. 
  • Speak with confidence.  Not everyone will want to listen to a "kid" but educate yourself about your opinions and don't be afraid to make your voice heard.  
  • Sometimes you will be wrong.  Don't be too proud to admit it when you are. 
  • Look people in the eye and use a firm handshake. 
  • Those 8 am classes may seem like a good idea when you're making your schedule.  I promise they aren't.  Never take classes that early.  
  • Don't be afraid to ask for help.  A fool is the man who thinks he knows everything and refuses to ask questions. 
  • God gave us a mouth that closes and ears that don't.  Be a good listener.  
  • The most important sex organ is a brain.  
  • Face problems head on.  Don't run away, they will just chase you.  Stand and deal.  

And at the end of the day, don't forget to be awesome.   

Love you forever; Like you for always, 


Tuesday, December 9, 2014

We Gobbled Until We Wobbled

I"m FINALLY getting my Turkey Day recap posted.  Now that we're smack dab in the middle of Christmas choas, but I figured it's better late than never.
Thanksgiving was fairly low key this year.  We all met at my aunt's house for a lunch.

We watched football.    We laughed about whatever cute the kids were doing.

Basically, we just had a good day.

This was an attempt at getting a family picture for our Christmas card.  This is also what happens when your husband is rushing everyone around instead of letting his wife take the lead and position everyone.  

This kid?  Is so close to being 18.  I wonder if he knows how much I adore him?

And in the first time since I can remember, I didn't step foot in a store for any Black Friday shopping. Instead, we hung out with some of my favorite in laws making the annual polish sausage.