Yesterday we took our annual family trip to the cider mill (in reality, we’ll probably go once or twice more). It was a picture perfect day. Slight fall feel in the air (but still very comfortable). Mix of clouds and sun, and we got there at a decent time to enjoy two full hours before lunch.

I took my “nice” camera vs. just snapping photos with my phone (a hobby of mine, I could spend hours with my camera).  The kids wanted to ride the train, so we got in line and hopped on. C decided at the last minute that he didn’t want to go; so hubby and C stayed back to watch S and I take a loop around the mill.

I was snapping away at S looking out the window…waving to people…getting excited about the train. She pointed out all the stuff she saw…”mama those pigs are stinky!” She’s 6, so it’s amazing how much they notice at that age.

The ride lasted maybe 3-4 minutes. Then it stopped. And although I had some cute pictures, including her getting SO excited about the tunnel it went through, I realized that I didn’t see ONE thing.

Not one. I was so busy taking pictures of her that I completely missed the train ride. And the scenery. And all the stuff she pointed out.

You see those articles about putting your phone down when playing with your kids to give them your full attention. I feel like this probably wasn’t much different.  Although I was doing what I thought would be nice for her (and me) to have later, my balance was obviously off.  I mean I did not look out the window ONE time.

Mental note – next time, I’ll need to put the camera down and see things through HER eyes instead of the camera lens. I see people at concerts missing the whole experience because they’ve got their phones up and are recording videos or taking pictures…and not getting immersed in the show. I sort of did the same thing.

Next time.

saturday morning

i love you because

…all is quiet

…i don’t know yet what the day will bring

…it means two nice long days of just us time is ahead

…i can sit with my cup of coffee before the craziness of the day begins

…there is no rushing, no place to scamper off to

…we can just do what our heart desires, all four of us


let her wear it

We were headed to a birthday party and my daughter had on a pink dress with a tutu (that she had picked out). She let me do her hair and she picked out a bow. Then I brought her white sandals over and she said “no, I want to wear my socks and black shoes.”

So, she did. And the socks were mismatched (as you can see). And the black shiny dress shoes didn’t really go with the dress. But she thought she looked dressed up for her friend. And I was happy that she was expressing her individual choices (at an age when she doesn’t have many choices day to day). So I told her I thought it was great that she picked out her own socks and shoes and off we went.

Especially with S being a girl – I want to ensure she is raised as confidently as possible. I know the years of self doubt are very close – and I’d like to push them off for as long as I can. The days where she will wonder if her friends will like something she wears or if someone will make fun of her are coming. But for now I’d like to let her express herself!

that sunday morning stillness

Every once in a while, I get a perfect Sunday morning of a tiny bit of quiet time to myself. That time is now. C is still sleeping as well as S (we had family over last night so they went to bed a little later than usual). Hubby is just waking as well, so I have time to make a cup of coffee, actually READ one of the magazines that comes to my house, and enjoy the stillness.

Our neighborhood is full of young children, but right now I know their homes are waking up as well (or already up and around if there are very young kids!). I never hear it like this – just the sounds of the birds chirping, an occasional dog bark and a rare car perhaps heading to church or on an early grocery run.

So I’m enjoying my few minutes (by writing too!) because in about 10 minutes, it’s time to get C his cup of milk, pack our swim bags for swim lessons, pick up the playroom that we left a mess last night and get myself out of my pajamas.

But right now it’s amazing!

Cheers to a mom’s weekend

This past weekend I took a “girls trip” to Austin. We sort of settled on that city because none of us had ever been, and we heard it had good food. At the time I agreed to go, it seemed like a good idea. But then as the time approached, like every time I know I’m leaving my kids overnight I started feeling sick to my stomach wondering why I even made these plans.

At the end of the weekend, I was SO glad I went. It was great to spend time catching up with frienda. Exploring a new city. Laughing by the pool. And recharging my batteries. We seldom get to do that as moms – for example, when my kids are in bed, I’m o line trying to order more diapers or figure out which classes I may want to look into for them.

And the kids? They survived whole I was gone. Dad and grandma did a great job keeping them happy and healthy.

So here’s to mom’s weekends everywhere – even though we cherish our time with our kids, I feel like it was a good investment in being able to take some deep breaths for a couple of days.

lesson learned: leave the trampolines for the kids

So my husband kids and I decided to go to the trampoline park Mother’s Day weekend. We usually have fun when we go as a family – we all buy our passes and jump. C tends to sort of just run around from thing to thing, but he LOVES jumping so it’s a lot of fun for him.  S loves it too…she and I often see what we can do (who can jump higher, who can do a tuck jump the best, etc.).

So this time, we were jumping….and I went up for a really HIGH jump (as I called it).  I felt an enormous amount of pain in my left knee and immediately went down. It didn’t pop – but I did manage to tear my meniscus slightly. So with all the young kids staring at me, this 43 year old woman had to be helped off the trampolines with a bag of ice.

I spent most of mother’s day weekend in bed with my leg elevated and iced.  I guess the one good thing is that I wanted a relaxing weekend – and I couldn’t do much, so it all worked out.  But 2 weeks later and I’m still hobbling around. Lesson learned – leave the jumping to the kids the next time!  Happy Mother’s Day to ME!

bubble – where I wish i could keep my kids (daily prompt)

But I know it’s not possible….but, I sure wish I could.

When S shares her deepest 5-year-old thoughts as I’m putting her to bed and she is reflecting on her day and she tells me that someone was mean to her on the playground.

When she falls and scrapes her knees and says she never want to play outside again.

When C gets whacked in the head by a swing he didn’t see (and that I couldn’t get to fast enough).

I know it’s not practical or even a real thing I could do, and probably wouldn’t be good for them, because at some point that bubble will pop and they’ll be in the “real world.” But for now, maybe for a few years, I wish I could keep their tender hearts and bodies in a bubble. So that nothing can harm their bodies and hearts.

So in the meantime I guess I do the next best thing – help them through it. Comfort, kiss boo-boos, whatever it may be.


via Daily Prompt: Bubble