Monthly Archives: August 2010

MEMORY LANE WITH MILLIE

I have told Elli countless times over the last twelve months  that I wish I could turn back time and relive her first year of life again.  With  Elli, sure, I was excited about having a sweet little girl, but I was so nervous, so shocked by the lack of sleep, and so unaware that I should treasure every second with this sweetest of gifts – one child to love and hold with no one to interrupt me, no other child to clean up after, and no one to discipline.  Why didn’t I just sit and hold her all day???

Nine years, and four more babies later, I was prepared.  I knew that most likely, Millie was the last child I would ever give birth to.  From the day she came home, I stole every moment I could with her alone.  I still treasure the first weekend after she was born.  Nathan was away for 3 nights, and Papa Sam and Grandma Sue had the four older kids.  I made myself a pot of soup and spent the whole weekend (minus a few outings with Joni) in the red chair in my living room, staring at Millie.  We watched lots of movies, took some naps, and read some books.  It was heaven to me.  Throughout the fall months, I would put the kids to bed as early as possible and retreat to my red chair with my little baby swaddled up in her blanket.  It got to the point where Millie wouldn’t eat anywhere else.  In the middle of the night when she was hungry, I would work really hard to try and feed her in my bed, but we would always end up downstairs in our chair, where she would eat like a champ.

This sweet routine came to an end when my  little girl started to move (Jude, our neighbor, has nicknamed her “Millie on the Move” for a very good reason!).  She was a quick one, crawling at five months and walking by 8.  She’s never really let us cuddle with her (Except for one great day when she had a fever :)) because she always has somewhere to go!  As my wise neighbor said, “You didn’t get a baby in Millie for very long!”

She might not have been a baby for very long, but she has still brought us so much Joy (fitting middle name!)  She has always been so quick to smile and laugh, and seems to have a little sparkle in her eye.  I think she may give us a workout!  She has the sweetest kisses that she rations out in painfully low numbers and loves to tease us into thinking we might get one.  When I read her books she always giggles, and the one time she will sit still is when we swing together on the porch swing.

Millie loves her siblings, and the feeling is mutual!  I keep a monitor in my kitchen and EVERY TIME she wakes up, the kids are fighting to get up the stairs to get her out of bed.  She cries when any of them get out of the car to be dropped off anywhere, and she lets them all hold her.  Today, as I headed to take the older two kids to gymnastics, I noticed that Nevi was carrying her purse.  When I asked her what she had in there, she replied, “Oh, I brought some toys for Millie to play with while we run errands!”  She is well taken care of…

Sure, she doesn’t get pureed avocados like my first born did, or a bath every night, but she has 6 pairs of arms to hold her, and a family that adores her more than she will ever know.

We love you sweet baby girl.  Happy Birthday!!!

Note to self:  Take pics of Millie with the other love of her life, Daddy!

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SCHOOL AWAITS!

Mom and Dad:  My desktop is being fixed, so I’ll have to add pictures later!

The girls are tucked in their beds, uniforms ironed, dress shoes ready, alarm set, excited to start a new year of school in the morning.  We spent part of our day today on a little outing, sans the little siblings,  to the school to drop off supplies, and then to Red Robin for lunch.  I know Nathan just smiles at their enthusiasm, but it fills my cup to see them so excited about a new year.  Janie ran right into her room without me and organized her supplies (one of her favorite past times) and Elli held back and waited for me to go with her into her room.  There was a list of tasks on the board that she had to follow and it was so endearing to watch her mentally check off the items and double check that she did them perfectly (first born, who can understand them? :))  Then, it was on to her locker.  The three of us went together to “decorate” the tiny metal space that she had mentally been planning for 2 months.  Oh, what excitement!  I loved seeing them connect with old friends, hugging and laughing.  I never heard, “How was your summer?” or “What have you been doing since we last talked?”, but instead they just jumped back in to casual conversations as though they had never been apart.

At lunch I tried really hard to get them to come up with goals for the year.  They had no interest in that discussion, but instead wanted to dance in their seats to the music overhead, and laugh at each others funny stories.  I think the saddest moment of my day came when Janie grabbed a balloon as we walked out the door, and then changed her mind and let it go.  Can they really be too old for balloons at Red Robin???

We’ve had a wonderful summer, including lots of time at the pool(s), a trip to North Carolina to enjoy the mountains with the Wilkey’s and the Outerbanks with the Angell’s.  The girls have spread their wings and started riding their bikes a little farther from home, learned new chores, such as emptying the dishwasher and detailing the car, discovered that you can make incredible snow cones using the food processor (my blades have never been so sharp!) and spent tons of time playing with their neighbor friends.

Most days have been enjoyable, but the last few have been extra sweet.  It reminds me of my childhood when Jodi and I would sense Mom and Dad about to tell us to get in the car to go home from somewhere fun, or to get ready for bed and we would suddenly get engrossed in the best game or adventure and try to suck every moment of fun out of our leftover time..  These last few days have seen very little fighting or restlessness.  The kids have come up with clever ways to occupy their time, and the house has seemed much calmer (It helps that the weather is much cooler and they can play outside)  Yesterday, Elli and the neighbor Allison spent over an hour detailing the interior of my car.  I came outside to film them while they washed the exterior, only to find Janie and Sam and their friends sitting inside the van, licking popsicles and watching the water pour down around them.  Sam was giggling and smiling as if it was the best time of his life!   After a few minutes, he grabbed one of his library books and started to read it.  I guess next time he’s bored I’ll go sit in a car wash for awhile!

So kiddos, I hope you remember all the fun we had this summer.  Don’t remember all the chores I made you do, the piano I made you practice, or the nights that I had little patience and made you go to bed before it got dark.  Just remember the waves crashing on your bodies, the great times with cousins, the nights I DID let you stay up and have sleep overs with the neighbors and all the laughs we shared together!

I will miss you tomorrow!

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