Full of Gratitude Month

It has come to an end.  Much too quickly.  As I reflect back on the month, it was this nightly/daily practice that made those days that were TOO much more manageable and gave every other day a positive glow.  Even as I sometimes struggled to breathe through whatever chaos or imagined emergency in the moment, by the time I sat down to write, I could always find something about my day (and usually at least 5) that was unique and special and worth being grateful for.  My month was infinitely improved by looking for the good, the great and the mundane.  

My Cookin’s So Good

it’ll make ya cry!

True story.  Two out of three kids were sobbing at dinner time because they couldn’t bear the thought of eating broccoli cheese soup.  And Lily gave me a look of compassion and said, “I tried it and I don’t really care for it, but I’ll eat it anyway.”

But at least I laughed about it!  And the other two ate bread and butter and cereal.  

I’m grateful for training the kid(s) to say, I don’t care for it instead of I hate this.  I’m grateful for TJ’s Candy Cane decaf herbal tea!!  I’m grateful for kid-decorated Christmas trees and learning to cede control of how I picture it all and just going with the flow.  I’m grateful for girls dancing in underpants (as asymmetric tops, oh yes).  I’m downright top of the world thankful to watch Emmy get down and move her solid little body.  

Uptown, funk you up.  Uptown funk you up, ya’ll!

Snip Clap 

This is what Ollie explained before bed: Uncle Andrew can really snip and clap fast. Snip, clap, snip, clap. It was so cute I couldn’t bring myself to tell him it was snap clap. 

This year we will have Christmas lights outside!  It is making me so happy. And we had the perfect day to do it!

We had a blast of a Thanksgiving. Totally lowkey and relaxed. I only wished it could have lasted a bit longer (the visit not the dinner). Lucky to have shared my time with this good looking (all good looking just not all smiling or looking at the camera when they ought) group!

Thanksgiving 2015

Happy Thanksgiving!

As I Walk with Beauty

As I walk,
The universe is walking with me
In beauty it walks before me
In beauty it walks behind me
In beauty it walks below me
In beauty it walks above me
Beauty is on every side
As I walk, I walk with Beauty.

~A Traditional Navajo Prayer

 The girls who can read each shared a poem–the above was Lily’s–today before our feast (thanks to Brent’s share of a Thanksgiving Reader!).  Over cheese and crackers, pre-feast, Ollie started our round circle share of things we are thankful for this year (and/or always).

Uncle Andrew arrived and everyone jumped for joy and we sat down to eat our smoked turkey and delectable sides sometime around 5.  It was such a wonderful day of relaxed preparations, sunning ourselves outside, reading, playing, and asking when Andrew would be there every 4.5 minutes from the beginning of the day until his eventual arrival.  🙂

A masked bandit was eating the birdseed when we woke up this morning; hoping it won’t be back tonight.  It was a fat little sucker and will be ready to hibernate soon, I hope.  Emmy, Lissa and I took a sunny walk to try and coax a nap or spot any turkeys but to no avail.  I had to rock her to sleep and it was the sweetest thing to have her breathing turn regular and deep and her little body twitch as she drifted off.  After dinner and dessert, the kids worked on puzzles and Ollie declared: We are ROCKING this puzzle, yeah!

I am grateful for a day filled with so much good stuff.

Thankful Eve

Seems like it is all coming together for tomorrow!  I love the anticipation part–and the doing it part–and even the after part (because that involves Christmas and everything🎄). But tonight I am thankful that Sam has off the next four days, I have the sweetest kids in the world, sitting in the sun today sipping my soda without a jacket on was absolutely, downright pleasant, the moon was orange and giant and so fast-moving this morning and Ollie sat in the dark with me to watch it, and that we get to spend a few days living it up with Lissa here.  Bring on the Turkey (and I’m really thankful that sucker arrived!)

Almost Gobble Time

Today was a good day. Just like yesterday. 

  • Grateful for a run. 
  • Grateful for Emmy (and Sam’s) look at my bottom dance. 
  • Grateful for Trader Joe’s holiday teas. 
  • Grateful for helpers as well as swipers in the kitchen. 


  • Grateful for boys who rush to give me great big hugs when I return home. 
  • Grateful for our library and the cool programs offered there like:

American Girl doll Thanksgiving craft night

Make a List

Warm pajamas😃zippers😃waking with the sun😃ambitious plans😃re-reading details😃hot cocoa with whipped cream😃Clue😃high chairs😃bundled kids in coats😃tostadas😃chapter books😃pillows😃


Oh, Ollie just cracked me up.  He is asleep but still has a baby Santa hat on.  Probably no pjs but yes, a hat.

Grateful for Amazon Prime and The Good Wife.  Just started Season 2.

I’m so thankful every child is clean.  Somehow everyone got bathed tonight!

First snow of the season…my kinda snow, too.  Barely noticeable and through sunshine.  

Passing it on

Remember how Lily ran around naked or costumed or nearly bare while we lived in CA?  And how when we first moved here the Baker Boys didn’t know what to make of her doing those things?  Then summer turned to fall and fall to winter and she simply couldn’t do it anymore.  She has passed the baton of naked to her little sister and a change is a’coming soon.  Little Miss Em needs to keep her clothes on and she simply refuses to be reasonable.  Let’s face it, when you are that cute and “free” years old, being reasonable is not a strength.

Ollie and I worked together and then he finished independently his first {entire} LEGO creation.  It was a birthday present from Jack, a Jr. LEGO set featuring Batman.  Just his speed.  Of course, Sam wanted to get him these but I just didn’t know how well they would match his skill level.  Thank goodness for multiple perspectives when raising kids🐵🙊🙈🙉

Finally, I am grateful for somehow magically keeping a straight head in the face of trauma.  So poor Owen managed to hurt himself pretty badly* but in these situations when I would think I would start to panic, time slows down and I can see what needs to be done.  We walked him home and his grandparents took over.  But it was so calm.  Same thing happened when Lily hurt her ear last year, or when someone is throwing up and I’m catching it in my hands.  Is it the magic of motherhood?  Or the miracle of experience and empathy?  Maybe a little of both.  (*ripped a fingernail completely-completely off his finger–grisly).