Sunday, April 28, 2013

Seven At The Spa

It is birthday season around here, and today we got to celebrate Reese & Charlotte turning 7!

I'm pretty sure I've mentioned before that I love to throw parties, right? Well, I do. And I get carried away. But with so many kiddos, I like to have a lot of fun on their birthdays and I like to make them feel super special.

And I like to eat cake. So there's that bonus too.

They requested a Spa party much like one we did for Ella awhile back, and it was such a hit this time around as well. We did manis, pedis, and even facials...which cracked us adults up...

Nothing fancy, just cucumbers and organic yogurt for those facials. But the girls thought it was SO great :).

We set up little place settings for each girl...

They talked and giggled, and that makes my heart happy.

I love Etsy for cupcake toppers and fun little signs. I bought flip-flops for each girl to wear after the pedicures - thought that would be a good party favor instead of a bag of candy. And when Old Navy sells them for 2 for $5, how can you go wrong??

So we painted nails, and opened gifts, and sang to my sweet girls.

And of course we ate cake and cupcakes...

I can't believe they are 7.

So, so thankful that God rocked our little world back in 2006 and gave us twins. They have changed us, and made us better parents. They have been a breath of fresh air.

Happy birthday to the sweetest 7yr olds I know!

Being your mama is one of my greatest blessings!

Friday, April 19, 2013

Even Though I Still Can't Believe It...

2 years ago today God (finally!) gave us a little boy :). It feels like yesterday that I was rocking him back and forth in the hospital bed under that dim night time lighting. Sigh, I will forever cherish those moments.

This little guy has brought so much joy to our family. He is truly a rough and tumble vision of grace. And as you may have noticed, I'm just a little in love with him...

So we have been celebrating on and off since last weekend. We had a race car party that I will post pics of soon...because it ended up being such a cute theme!

But for now, I'm off to kiss his little 2yr old forehead again while he sleeps.

Happy birthday to the sweetest Lincoln on the planet (not that I'm partial)...

Buddy, you are one loved little boy!!

Friday, April 12, 2013

To My Only Son And My Future Daughter-In-Law

Lincoln turns 2 next week. Someone hold me, please. We are throwing a Race Car party this weekend in which I've stayed true to my crazy self and have gone completely overboard. I posted something like this a year ago and thought I would again :). You have to laugh to keep from crying as your babies grow in to not-so-tiny-babies anymore, right?? (Although, he is still my know, forever.)


They all say I favor you.

And they all speak a small amount of truth.

Even my best friends say that 20 years from now I will no doubt be sitting across from Dr. Phil on some Meddling Mother-in-Law show where I will be arguing that I am not "pushy", I'm just "really involved".

It's not that I actually love you more or have placed you as my "favorite" child, it's just that my connection to you is far different than my connection to your sisters. So many people told me the bond would be unique, but I just didn't believe it.

From the moment you were born I knew our relationship would be special.

You see, your sisters and I have the same hormones running through our veins which basically binds us for life. We'll hopefully have that "mother/daughter/best friends" relationship as they get older just like my mom and I do. They'll call me to talk about everything and nothing. We will talk about clothes, complain about pms, shop for prom dresses, plan weddings, and wait in line for $5 crockpots on Black Friday.

Lord willing, we will always travel in a pack. I already look forward to those future memories with your sisters.

Oh, we also will talk about your new girlfriend that you bring to dinner when we all go to the bathroom together. You might as well know that now.

But deep in my mothering heart, I know that won't be the deal with you. I know that boys leave their moms for a girl that has stolen their heart. That's why I have eaten up every single second of you while I can.

I know that before I know it you will be running around with the neighbor boys, playing in the mud, working out in the garage with dad, joining the football team, and then ultimately find some know-it-all girl who thinks she knows more about you than I do.

Keep in mind that I spent 9 months carrying you, gained almost 50 pounds, endured swelling that could've been featured on the Discovery Health channel, and then had my abdomen cut open to bring you into this world. Maybe you should write those facts down on an index card, have it laminated, and always keep it in your back pocket. Just in case you ever need a refresher.

It's probably best that you make sure any prospect is strong enough to embrace 1 mother-in-law and 5 sister-in-laws. She's going to need a GREAT sense of humor.

So I thought I'd help you and your future bride out by drafting up a set of vows for her - I will work on yours in the years to come. Please know that these are subject to change at anytime, especially as your wedding gets closer...

I, girl who is 2nd place to your mother, take you Lincoln, to be my husband.

(I also take your mother to be my mentor and go-to girl for all life questions. After all, she does know everything.)

To have and to hold from this day forward.

(And speaking of holding, she should hold all of our children as soon as I deliver. She does have tons of experience and she did raise exceptional human beings like yourself and your beautiful sisters.)

For better or for worse,

(Although I just would like to say that life will always be better when your mother is right smack in the middle of our business. She has earned the privilege of knowing everything about me and my ways. I should probably give her access to all my social networking sites.)

for richer, for poorer,

(Which by the way, money will never matter because your mom can guide me on big purchases, shopping trips, and help me find the best deals on the latest trends...she is after all such a fashionista.)

in sickness and in health,

(And when you are sick, I know you'll want your mom to come take care of you because she is the only woman that will ever be able to truly comfort you. She's your world.)

 to love and to cherish;

(Even though I will never cherish you like your mother does. You should call her everyday and remind her how much you and I adore her. Schedule weekly lunch dates with her too so you can get her opinion on important decisions we are making at the time.) 

from this day forward until death do us part.

(Now lets go to the reception where your mom should have the first dance with you.)

I think that is completely appropriate, don't you? We can work on them as you get older...I'm sure I'll need to make some changes here and there.

Love you, my sweet Lincoln. You are my favorite little man on the planet, forever and always.


I know all you other moms of boys have vows just like this already written, right? No? I'm the only one? Oh well. I'm ok with that :).

Monday, April 1, 2013

10 Things For My Girls

Last week I took my older 3 ladies out for an overnight "Girls Night". We shopped, got our nails painted and laughed the night away in a local hotel. It was bliss. I've been telling Eric that I want to be doing this more often so I can talk to them about things...about life.

And so for the record, here is my heart in a little letter.


My sweet little (although growing so fast) girls, there are 10 things I want you to know. And I loved talking through some of them with you on our special night out :). I know that you won't always want or welcome my advice, so I will try to refrain from constantly blurting out my opinions as you continue to grow.

I said I'll TRY, I can't promise anything.

In the newness of this "older kids" season I have learned a lot. My life isn't all toddlers and babies like it once was. I've learned a lot about waiting and listening. A lot about letting go and letting you grow. And a lot about how I try to control things that were never meant to be in my control.

Motherhood is humbling, girls. It's a journey of grace, and love, and joy, and pain, and sleepless nights. It's dancing in the rain, and soaking up the small stuff. It's this passion that runs so deep in my being that sometimes it's painful.

And just as I blink and remember being in my early 20's with my belly swollen with your newborn goodness, I also know I'll blink and we'll be ten years from now.

10 things, girls. 10 things that I want you all to remember as you grow...

You are unique. Unique among your siblings, and unique among your peers. You won't be any good at being someone else, but you will be great at being you. Each of you have different passions and talents that make you stunning in His (and my) eyes. Embrace the beauty that God created when He knit you together. Inside and out.

Everyone is not doing it. Not everyone is acting that way. Not everyone talks like that. Not everyone is wearing that skimpy outfit. And not everyone thinks its cool. The only one you need to be following is Him. Otherwise, be a leader and a light.

You are worth it. You are worth that dream you want to chase, that goal you want to reach, and anything else your little hearts desire. You are worth waiting for, worth fighting for, and worth the respect of others (especially the boys, my dears). You are worth it because He says so.

Don't be a gossip. You don't want to be that girl. It never ends well and it almost always comes back to bite you. God wants your words to be full of grace.

Be Honest. To me, to yourself, to Him. Be upfront and tell it like it is. It's like telling someone their zipper is down, awkward at first, but better for everyone in the end.

Focus on your heart, not your appearance. Modesty is admirable. The pressure from our culture can be nasty, be prepared to fight for what you know is true. The state of your heart is more important than your size, or choice in designer clothes - you are more important than a number. And at the end of the day, people want to be with someone who's heart is full of passion and joy, not with someone who only talks about her image or lack there of.

Love your sisters. Take a look around you, these ladies are your best friends. They will be here when you are down and when you want to celebrate. They (along with myself) will sit in bed and eat pizza with you when you get your heart broken. It is an unbreakable bond, remember that.

I am your mother, not your friend. This is a hard one for me because I really want you to like me and I know that sometimes you won't. For now though, it's my job to raise you. We'll laugh and talk like girlfriends sometimes, but for the most part, I'm mom. I can't wait to have the grown up relationships with you that I have with your grandma.

Show grace. Love people even when they're not your favorite people. Everyone needs Him and you never know what the kid next to you is dealing with. Nothing trumps the grace that He has shown us. It truly is amazing grace, ladies - don't ever let anyone tell you different. Share it with everyone.

I'm here. Anytime you need me. Anytime you need to talk or cry or rejoice, I'm here. I want to know whats happening in your little world. I will wait for you to tell me and I'll try to accept the times that you don't. Just know that I hurt when you hurt, and I rejoice when you rejoice. Tell me all about life, I'll listen.

I love ya, my babes.

Yes, you'll always be my babies. And no, I won't call you that in front of your friends anymore.

There is nothing I wouldn't do, no fight I wouldn't fight, and no other earthly love like the one I have for you.  It is unique and mysterious and a gift from Him.

You ladies are a gift in so many ways. I am forever thankful for the bond we have. And yes, I am in favor of many more "girls nights out" :).

Love you so, so much,