These people. They are some of my favorites.
My Texas favorites. Except they don't live in Texas anymore. Since we have been gone they moved from Texas to Colorado. Just typing that makes my heart hurt a little bit. Because while they are not residency people (GASP! Wait? There is life outside of residency?!) they are a HUGE part of why the last year...year and a half of residency have been bearable for me and my kids. This amazing lady has opened her home to my kids and me nearly every Sunday for almost as long as we have lived in Texas. Oh and we were even allowed in on other days too;) She loves my kids fiercely and I love hers like they are my own. And she has encouraged and challenged me to be a better me - just by being her. I am so incredibly thankful for her friendship. Texas isn't going to be the same without her there. Good thing Colorado is practically on my drive home from Minnesota. Okay it isn't at all on my way home...but whats an extra 500 miles? Nothing when it comes to friendship. Thank you for being my friend Tami.
Tuesday, July 4, 2017
The kids and I left Texas 2 weeks ago. As of today we have driven 1,900 miles. And slept in 7 homes + 1 hotel + camp. We've missed naps and eaten dozens of meals out of our van. We've stayed up way too late - way too many nights in a row. We've also slept in and slowed down. Enjoying time with friends and family - people we only get to see once a year. People that we love dearly.
Just this morning we started our day at my grandparents' home. Playing in the garden and visiting.
And tonight we ended our day at Joe's great grandparents' house. Swimming in the lake and going on a pontoon boat ride.
There was a 2 hour van drive between the two houses. But the effort of traveling solo with my four kids...it's always worth it. Time spent with family is the BEST time. And as a bonus Minnesota has the best summers. Warm and sunny during the day and cool in the evenings!
P.S. Don't be confused by this post. Traveling cross-country and living like gypsies for weeks at a time with small children is NOT easy. I don't mean to gloss over the hard or ugly parts. Trust me there have been plenty of those moments...like my sunglasses falling in the toilet at our very first rest stop. Or waking up with a neck so stiff I cried out in pain and could not turn it on day 9. Or being so tired that driving just one more mile felt impossible. Or having kids ready to brawl to the death over the last ________ (insert pretty much anything) while family-you-see-only-once-a-year watches. All of those moments plus many more have happened on this trip. But it's been worth it. Family time is the best time.
Thursday, June 22, 2017
The kids and I are started our annual summer trek to Minnesota. We covered 400 miles today...in 11 hours. Oops. We are going to have to pick up the pace tomorrow. But we were just having too much fun - playing along the way. We hit up a playground in one town, a splash pad in the next and our last stop was McDonalds.
And since we had been having such a great travel day and the kids were being such great travelers I decided to splurge and buy Happy Meals for the girls. Upon the discovery of these...
...instead of the advertised Beanie Boos (stuffed animals) the tears flowed. Those were the least happy Happy Meals I've ever witnessed. Overall though this trip is going well. We've had a few minor mishaps...sunglasses in a (used) toilet, another pair of sunglasses broken, one cut chin at the playground and a few sibling squabbles. But really we are all healthy and mostly happy travelers. I couldn't ask for more.
400 miles down. 1,000 to go!
Friday, June 9, 2017
As a child I can remember how exciting it was turning 10. I mean double digits! How cool was that?! Now as the parent of a soon-to-be 10 year old double digits doesn't sound quite so cool. In fact I can't stop crying because ten YEARS has absolutely flown by. All those people that said "don't blink" and "they grow up so fast"...they were right. Darn it. I blinked and he's more than half grown.
How did we go from the mom + baby on the left to the kid + mom on the right so quickly? I'll never understand it. Don't get me wrong I'm incredibly proud of the kid Isaiah is today. He's smart and funny and creative. He's an amazing big brother. This kid is the definition of a book worm and his use of language cracks me up. Just tonight he was pushing the coffee table out of the way so "we would have adequate floor space" (for our family dance party). But he will always be my baby. The one who made me a mom. The one who made me love so deeply it feels like my heart might just burst at times. The one who has taught me how to be a mother. (Sorry kid I really don't know what I'm doing but you've been a great experiment!) Being his mother has been one of my greatest joys and accomplishments.
Tuesday, June 6, 2017
Tomorrow morning this girl will wake up a SEVEN year old!
And just like I've said every year...I'm not sure how that happened. Because seven years ago tonight I was nine days past my due date and HUGE and 100% convinced I would be pregnant forrrevvvverrrrrr:)
And now she is seven. And I'm very much not pregnant;-) I loved looking back at these birthday celebration pictures but more than that I really enjoyed celebrating Charlotte today as a family.
Because of Joe's trauma schedule we did not have a party but instead chose to have a family fun day! It started with donuts for breakfast followed by gift opening and an hour of jumping at an indoor trampoline place. Which Charlotte deemed "the best birthday ever - even without friends". Then we had pizza and ended our day at the beach with our residency family.
P.S. After every last morsel of those birthday donuts were consumed Charlotte decided to inform that she doesn't like sprinkles on her donuts! Say what?!? That information would have been hugely useful years ago considering 3 of her 7 birthdays have included SPRINKLE donuts.