Sunday, August 31, 2008

Photo Post a.k.a. Please Forgive me because my Kids are Cute

So this is all I've got for now - please accept my cute baby and toddler apologies for leaving you for six weeks with nary an explanation!!

Back from Maternity Leave

I'm finally back here to write after six weeks off. It's been six incredibly short weeks off that have flown by so quickly it only feels like a week since I've written. Two tops. Our family took a week long screen break, meaning no T.V. and extremely minimal computer time. It was hard, to be honest, but really good. In fact, it was so good for me I realized I needed more time off, so I took it. I decided to take the six weeks of maternity leave from writing that I didn't take after Melora was born because I felt compelled to journal about every wonderful moment. I'm sorry I didn't tell my regular readers (that would be you, Mom) that I was going to take a break and just left without any note of explanation. But if anyone is still reading (that would be you again, Mom!) I have so much to write, as well as a big huge apology/bribe to read again. Photo post!!!

We have had an amazing sprint to the finish line of summer. Although I missed blogging about all our adventures, I’m so glad I took a step back from the computer screen to actually have them.

Shortly after I last posted, we went to Wisconsin Dells with our church small group. We spent three days there splashing around the pools at our resort and smelling like a whole lot of sunscreen. Isaiah was too little to do any of the big waterslides, but we really enjoyed the lazy rivers and the housekeeping service. I may have enjoyed that last part slightly more than Isaiah. I think the trip will be more relaxing if we take it again in a few years, because this past time I was constantly on high drowning alert.

We then took our aforementioned screen break which was so challenging and enjoyable (eventually.) We took walks in the evenings, played for hours upon hours outside, grilled, played games together, and actually got to bed on time. I knew during that time that this was how I should live my life. I read so much more to Isaiah; I played all day with my kids; I spent hours staring into Melora’s beautiful blue eyes and making Isaiah double over laughing; I got lungfulls of fresh, evening air, and I snuggled with my husband as we read together in the evenings.

I wish I could say I didn’t miss the internet or T.V., but I did. I really missed T.V. during the day when I just needed 30 minutes to clean and couldn’t turn the boob tube on to entertain Isaiah. I missed the internet several times a day because I couldn’t sneak upstairs to read momformation or my friends’ many blogs. I missed T.V. in the evenings after Michael got home mainly on Tuesday night when Wipeout was on. How funny is that show? Oddly enough, after the first day or two, Isaiah didn’t miss T.V. at all. He’s smart enough to recognize a good change when it hits him, but I am stuck in my old, addictive habits. I’m glad I didn’t give myself a lifelong internet and T.V. ban, but I’m going to try, really try, to use them less. I’ve realized in the past six weeks how quickly my kids are growing up, and it’s shocking.

We celebrated our 5 year anniversary August 16th with grilled steak and cheesecake at home with our beautiful children. We have gone out to dinner for two the previous four years of marriage, and I was a little sad this anniversary was going to pass without the usual fanfare. But spending the night surrounded by our most cherished blessings was wonderful. We all enjoyed dinner together (Isaiah was a big fan of the cheesecake,) and I didn’t have any nagging worries in the back of my head about our kids left at home.

Then the Olympics hit and we allowed ourselves to watch T.V. again, and I will admit that I came down with quite the Olympic fever. I stayed up late to watch volleyball and gymnastics every night the games were on, and Isaiah even got excited when it was time to watch “Bali-ball.” Now that they are over, though, we are getting back to a somewhat normal sleep schedule unless I can think of a good excuse to mess it all up again.

So, yes, this summer passed in a huge blur, and I haven’t taken the time to write down the hundreds of wonderfully adorable things my kids have done, but a few favorites stand out:

Isaiah's version of "It's raining, it's pouring:"
Aaaaand the man went into his beeeeeeeed, and he didn't want to go potteeeeee in his potty seat in this morning.

Melora is extremely interested in food and has begun grabbing anything in my hand and trying to eat it. So far she has managed to get into her mouth, my cell phone, a vanilla Coke can, frozen lemonade, a toy train, and some cardboard. She likes it all.

Isaiah is becoming a more adoring big brother every day. He knows it’s his duty to protect Melora and keep her happy, so he has perfected his soothing “shhhhhhhhhh” sounds which he starts whenever Melora begins crying. Amazingly enough, she calms down for his “shhhhhhhh” much more readily than she calms down for mine. He also shares his toys with her (which is how the toy train got tasted in the first place) and makes sure she is given anything in sight that is pink. He is convinced that my pink underwear belongs to Melora, and I can’t sort laundry without him taking the pink panties and trying to dress Melora in them.

Melora can now roll over and hold her head up big and high. She has also begun talking, which starts first thing in the morning and only stops when she falls asleep again. She coos, shouts, and giggles all day long to herself and anyone around her. I’m absolutely in love with her laugh, which bursts out of her in a loud blast like she’s been trying to hold it in through an entire somber church service.

Isaiah has begun saying our family prayer before dinner some nights. I managed to record one the other night, which went, “Dear Jesus, thank you for this day, and thank you for this day…and for my corn, and thank you for this finger, and thank you for this Mommy hug, and thank you for these feelings. The End.”