Where did the time go? So let’s catch up:
Ava- Ava is almost 8. I was trying to remember Ava’s toddler voice the other day and I couldn’t. She has been a “big girl” so long, her baby voice is just a faint memory. I hate that. I hate that they grow up and stop being legitimate babies. She is now in the 2nd grade and doing fantastic. We had a bit of a rough start with school but is finding a better groove now. Ava still loves animals, reading, math, art, crafts and still wants to be a veterinarian when she grows up.
Ava is still Ava. She still struggles some days with giving and receiving grace, not being in control and not being perfect. But she has grown so much. It is truly a God thing. But some days are still really hard. We decided to go to a new therapist – one Ava felt comfortable talking to and one that had a lot of experience with children. And we found an amazing therapist that has helped Ava learn so much. Right now, the good days far exceed the hard ones. She is really happy. She has moments of being so silly but always has the responsible, serious side peeking out. She has a soft heart full of compassion. She will move mountains one day!
Sam – Oh, my sweet Sam turned 6 this summer. He is now in the 1st grade and has mixed feeling about it. He came home after the first couple days of school this year and said “Mom, I’m really mad at you. You didn’t tell me it was going to be all day long!” I guess he missed that important detail in all the back to school busyness. He still loves Lego’s, building anything, art, playing with friends and riding his bike.
One thing I have really noticed about Sam this year is how important touch is to him. He is so self sufficient and kind of an introvert that physical touch is forgotten. One day he was really struggling with just about everything. It was Sunday so he went to the service with us and cuddled up under Jon’s arm. He didn’t move the entire service and once it was over, all was well. His love tank was filled and he was back to himself again. It was just a lesson for me to remember to grab him and hold him for a while, hold his hand or just cuddle with him for a few minutes before bed. It takes so little but makes the world of difference.
Jack – We affectionately call Jackson nicknames like Jack-Jack, Jack-o-lantern, Jackapotomus and Jack Attack. He has latched onto Jack-o-lantern and even introduces himself as that. Jack turned 3 a few weeks ago and is our little extrovert. He knows no stranger and loves to tell people about his dad and machines. “Did you know my dad has an excavator? Do you have a loader? My dad drives a loader and a bulldozer.” and on and on and on. He talks to construction workers every time we go on a walk. Obsessed is putting it mildly. Jack is funny, athletic and loud! He loves being a big brother and is very serious about protecting Stella from all sorts of choking hazards. Jack definitely makes life interesting!
Jackson has a big personality and is full of life. But he has a soft heart and a gentleness about him too. He is our only early riser so we often get extra cuddles with Jackson. In the darkness he often whispers “I love you.” He tells everyone exactly what he feels and what he is thinking. There is something about his 3 year old filter lacking heart that is refreshing.
Stella – Ah, the baby. Everyone loves Stella…but right now, she is very picky on who she loves. She is now 16 months and is all toddler. She loves to climb, find little places to crawl in, laugh when I say no and run when I say to come here. Thank goodness I have an ounce of energy left to keep up with her. She is dainty and quite petite so her orneriness is often a little surprising. She loves her siblings, fruit, being outside, bath time and stealing every single tooth brush in the house. She is keeping us on our toes!
We are so blessed by each one of these littles. God has taught us and shaped us so much in our parenting journey. We laugh sometimes when we think of life before kids. What did we do with that abundance of time?
And a few more pics for good measure. It might be another year before I post again.