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Tag: kids

What Makes Us

Our experiences make us who we are. We hear that simple statement so many times during our lives, albeit in many different forms. But it’s true, isn’t it? Everything that happens in our lifetime molds and shapes us into who we are from infancy through our eventual death.

This idea of experience has hit me several times during the last several days, both through personal challenges and exterior observations. I’ve been thinking a lot about how my lifetime experiences have shaped me into who I am now, and about how I am shaping those around me simply by being me. I see glimpses of myself in my kids, both good and bad at times.

I think about Caleb, who spent the last 9 months or so attending Montessori school – an opportunity my other two children did not have. He learned a lot of skills there that they will learn or have learned over time, through home or other sources, but he has had this amazing experience that they will never have.

My daughter is getting ready to head off to a new school next year where she will have so many opportunities for learning beyond what is offerered in a traditional school classroom. How will that change her and shape her life differently than if she continued on her current path? I can’t wait to see.

My oldest son, who has struggled for so long, had the best school year he has ever had thanks to a teacher who really cared about finding ways to make things work for him. Changing a few things both environmentally and procedurally made a huge difference for him. He now has a positive outlook on school where it has always been a little negative.

Our work environments, our social environments, our Spirituality, our teachers and mentors, our friendships – all of it makes us who we are. I am not the same person I was even three short years ago. That time in my life seem so far away now. Not that life is perfect by any means, but losing my job may have been one of the best things that ever happened to me. It forced me to change my environment and get out of my comfort zone where I could grow instead of remaining stagnant.

I’m not even sure where I’m going with this rambling, disjointed entry so I’m just going to publish it and call it good. This is just what I’ve been thinking about.

**random picture of my boy just because!

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The End of an Era

(Before I get started, if you are reading this on my actual site, I apologize for the hideous look. I started playing with my template and then ran out of time to finish it…a few weeks ago. I’ll get around to it someday.)


Caleb has officially weaned himself. It has been eight days since he last breastfed (though we’ve been down to only a bedtime feeding for a while). It became apparent a few weeks ago that he was no longer satisfied with simply snuggling and nursing. He wanted to take his milk and roam around the room, which didn’t work so well when his milk was attached to my boob. I’ve been fighting the gymnastics and biting for a while now, so in a way I’m glad that he has decided to make this break. He will still occasionally tug on my shirt, but if I ask if he would like a cup, he’ll run to the kitchen and happily take a sippy cup with milk or water in it.

I have mixed feelings about all of this. On one hand, I’ve been ready to move on and have my body to myself again, but on the other, I already miss the snuggling and bonding, and the ability to instantly comfort him simply by lifting my shirt. And then there is the whole part of me that keeps saying, but he’s my BABYYYYYYYY! Not only that, but he’s my last baby. I’ll never get to experience that kind of bonding again. I know not everyone has a good experience with breastfeeding, but for me it was just absolutely lovely (not to say that I didn’t have some struggles, but overall it was good). I loved that I could provide for my children in that way and I am a little sad that it has come to an end. I spent over three years of my life (39 months total) nursing my babies – Caleb being the longest at 17 months. They each weaned themselves when they were ready. It just seems hard to believe that that part of my life is now done.

Caleb is a full-on walking, talking, opinionated toddler. Evie starts kindergarten in a couple of weeks, and Zach already has the attitude of a pre-teen at only eight years old. My babies are growing up, and while there are benefits to this (they are finally starting to do some chores!), right now I’m a little nostalgic for those baby years. I truly have no desire to have another baby. Our family is 100% complete as it is, but I’m still a little sad that I’ll never have the experience of holding my own newborn baby again. I’ll just have to find someone else’s baby to hold now and then.

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Today kind of feels like the first day of summer for our family. Summer school is finally done for Zach. Evie and Caleb are done with day care for a while. For the first time ever, my kids actually get to know what it feels like to have a summer off and get to stay home. The idea of putting all three kids in full time day care for the summer nearly gave me a heart attack, so my awesome sister agreed to keep the kids for the rest of the summer. My in-laws are coming up to cover about a week and a half while my sister has other obligations, so that only leaves about  a week at the end of the summer for us to figure out.

I’m not even sure when this became such a big deal to me. I mean, sure, it saves me some money in day care costs, but it isn’t just that. I’m genuinely excited that my kids get to be at home. They can sleep in, watch tv, play, and just enjoy being kids – all of the things I wish I could go back and do again. The only hard part is that I don’t get to be there to enjoy it with them. I find myself wishing, yet again, that I would have followed my own plan and continued to pursue becoming a school guidance counselor (I could never be a teacher!) so that I could have summers off too. I didn’t realize what I was giving up when I let my life change course.


I shouldn’t let myself do it, but I keep finding myself daydreaming about the things I could do with the kids if only I were home with them during the week. We can only cram so much into a weekend and I feel like they deserve so much more than I can give. Plus, splitting my time between 3 kids is way harder than splitting it between 2, especially when 1 of the 3 demands my attention the majority of the time. I feel like the older kids are really missing out right now and it just plain sucks.

In order to combat my feelings of inadequacy, we came up with a summer bucket list of sorts of all the fun family activities we want to do…that I now have to also cram into the already full weekends. Instead of taking the time to clean my house, do laundry, and grocery shop on the weekends, I’m taking time out to be with my kids and do something fun with them. I need it just as much as they do. So if you come to my house and can’t walk through the living room? I’m sorry. We’re going to be too busy applying sunscreen, playing in the water, going camping, picnicking, having water balloon fights, and hanging out at the lake to clean it up.

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Zach turns seven today and for some reason I am a mopey mess of emotions about it. My BABY is SEVEN! I’m blaming this crazy emotional state of mine on the residual hormone changes from birthing my last baby (who is already 4 months old!) and the fact that said baby is practically a little mini-me of Zach. The personalities are different, but my two boys look so very much alike that it is hard to look at Caleb and not think about sitting and holding Zach as an infant. Looking at the two of them just reinforces how quickly it all goes by. He may be turning seven today, but I’m pretty sure when I blink my eyes he’ll be 18 and moving away from home. Although, he has assured me that when he moves out he’ll just buy the house next to mine or maybe across the street so he can still come visit a lot. I suppose I can live with that.


Since his party isn’t until Saturday and Daddy won’t be home tonight, we decided to celebrate a little bit last night. We took him out for the dinner of his choice (which ended up being McDonald’s), had ice cream for dessert, and then let him open his birthday gifts from the family.



I’d say he is pretty happy with his gifts. He would have been even happier if I would have let him stay up all night and finish building his new Legos, but even 7-year-olds need their sleep.

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The Nephews

If you’ve been reading along for any amount of time, you know that I spend a lot of time with my nephews. My sister and I are really close and our kids are constantly begging to see each other. It is rare when we don’t see them at least once on the weekends. My sister asked me months ago if I would do the boys’ photos for their birthdays this year and we finally found a day to do them. I think they turned out pretty good, but as always, I learned that there are a few things I should do differently next time.








p.s. You can thank my husband for this post as he has been complaining about the lack of of updates lately.

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