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Tuesday, May 22, 2012

a perfect family day

Our family had exactly the kind of day we needed after losing a family member.
We had tea and breakfast on the patio, Ella had only one episode of crying and screaming as she fought cleaning her room, some quickie house projects, bike riding, the beach and more bike riding.  There was the love and fun and connecting we all needed - all ingredients for a great day.

At the yard sale I bought this tag along for the girls (for $10!).  Maya was kind of nervous but Ella thought it was awesome.  With Maya in the child seat on Sandi's bike and Ella riding behind me we were able to go for a true bike ride.  Thirty minutes of weaving in and out of neighborhoods and Ella was taken by the feeling of riding so fast.  At one point she yelled from behind, "It smells like lilacs and speed!"

Sandi is our designated family worry wart about all things safety related and she was nervous about the give in the tag along.  She kept calling, "Slow down! Not too fast!" to us.  Then just as she had yelled it for the last time on the downhill toward our driveway, she pulled around and passed us.  And that little imp riding just behind her turned around, slung her arm over the plastic molded seat and stuck her tongue out at us. 

I wouldn't expect anything else.

Since Sandi is going to be spending most of her summer inside an operating room, we decided to hit the beach. 

Can someone please tell me when my babies grew into bonafide girls?
It was only three years ago that Ella was wearing the second of her three "twirly dresses."  She fell so in love with this one sundress from our friends'  Fresh Produce store that we had to get another each summer.  When she was two she wore a yellow one completely out by wearing every day of that summer.

And now look whose wearing it?

And who is surprised that THIS is what she is doing with it?

The full skirt of the twirly dress doesn't exactly agree with trolling for snails and beach glass so a change of clothes was necessary.

All it takes to sustain joy at the beach is the ability to dig in the sand. And with some cooperative creativity, a hole is born.
To be faithful architects of a sound beach hole, you must test it.

We need to blow this picture up to poster size and hang it on the ceiling above the kids' beds so they can remember Mommy this summer and how much fun she is.

Aside from playing with the kids, the beach really only means one thing to Sandi: 
I have learned over the years how to catch and throw (poorly, but passably) and now I even find it fun.  As long as no one is around to point and laugh.

Despite the fact that it is a tad blurry, this is my favorite photograph I've taken to date.   And no, I did not catch the ball.

As the school year wraps up, I am overcome with the sentimentality that attacks me from time to time and weakens me at the knees.  My kids are growing up.  They are moving outside of our family.  Maya only has one more year at home after this.  One more year!  I just got used to this stage, I just got in a groove, why does it have to change?

People always say that "it goes by too fast."  I used to kind of roll my eyes and think, yeah well this part where I have one crying because she has too many skirts to choose from and the other trying to put elastics in my hair while I try to eat breakfast while it is still lukewarm can't seem to pass me quickly enough.

Here is what makes me uniquely crazy: I can both bemoan a stage of my life and lament its passing. I can be unhappy and uncomfortable in one moment but somehow have the ability to reminisce about it at the same time and wish for it back.  

I LOVE that my kids are more independent, that they have more stamina and we can do more with them. I love that they "get the joke" and can think for themselves, express their ideas (sometimes through song, often through screaming) and find stimulation in their own minds. 

I love that I sold their potty seats in my yard sale and that no one is an a 5 point car seat anymore.  I love that when they ask a complicated question, most of the time they can grasp at least some of the complicated answer.  I love that we are teaching them values and they are getting them.  I love that I can mow the lawn and not have to have my eyeballs on them every second.


My skin is changing, puckering in places ever so slightly in ways it didn't used to.  Ella can't comfortably fit in my lap anymore and has to work hard to tuck in.  I sometimes have to make her walk when she falls asleep somewhere other than her bed because she is heavy to carry.  Did I mention Maya only has one more year at home and then life as I know it (and sometimes begrudge it) will flip on its head?

I don't want my babies back.  But I do wish my girls would slow it up already.

I always said, three and six, the perfect ages.  Except... now four and seven are the perfect ages.

1 comment:

Zoe K said...

Your beautiful pictures put the biggest, goofiest grin on my face. I ask myself all the time why time seems to pass more quickly the older we get. Is it just because we are more aware of it, or is it because the universe is having a laugh at our expense and actually speeding itself up. That would be so rude. I've noticed time falling into a pattern for me; my mondays are gloomy and slow, and then each day progresses faster and faster until the weekend (which is when I get to see my boyfriend), which flies by so heart-breakingly fast I want to shake my fist at Father Time and sternly remind him that patience is a virtue, damnit.

P.S. Any good massage therapy reading suggestions? I still have a year at UMO left, but it's never to early to start prepping!

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