well. it's been almost 5 months. lots has happened, including my baby girl turning 5, and my baby boy growing like a maniac and deciding to act not so baby-ish anymore. this is going to be a big collection of random tidbits about these two precious nuggets of mine, as I go through the text messages I've sent myself over the last few months, reminding me of what I wanted to write once I finally sat down to do it...
so here are some things. Catherine went back and forth on the theme of her 5th birthday party, starting with "all of the princesses" and ending up with a "rainbow/spring time theme". I think that is the cutest, most creative and unique thing to come out of a little girl's brain. you told me what you wanted the scene to be on your cake and what balloons and decorations to get...here's a picture of your cake, made by the ever-talented aunt nikki davis.
amazing, right? and it happened to be so delicious I can't quit thinking about it.
her party was super fun. lots of people, more than I expected actually. I think all of the kids went swimming and a lot of the adults too (the grown men performed a random assortment of antics off the diving board again), all of the food was gone and some of our sweet family and friends were there well past the ending time on the invitation. all of these things I see as signs of a good party=)
most of all: Catherine felt loved and celebrated and had a great time herself.
I can't believe you're 5, sweet girl. most of the time our time with you as a baby in and out of hospitals and operating rooms is a distant memory, almost feeling like it wasn't real. a lot of times i'm thankful for that because it doesn't take much to flip my anxiety into high gear and send me into fits of worry that something will happen to you again. but on your birthday as I went in to check on you and kiss you goodnight after you'd already fallen asleep, I felt a gentle wave of pictures and memories play through my mind of that first year or two. you in my belly kicking my ribs. in the delivery room making your first squeak that gave us all hope. watching you fight in the NICU, some days filled with tears and some days filled with smiles. seeing your eyes open for the first time. hearing your laugh when you finally could breathe without a trach...i remember daddy throwing you up in the air in that PICU room 5 minutes after we took out your trach for good just so he could hear you giggle. for a second i thought we would get scolded for that, but as i looked around i saw the respiratory therapists, nurses, and the surgical team watching you and smiling along with us as we heard that sweet voice. while you slept, i ran my fingers over the scar on your neck, across your belly and that sweet g-tube hole that you ask about sometimes. and I kissed your lips and your cheek and the corner of your eye (usually it's in that order before I go to bed myself) and I felt a rush of thankfulness. of God's faithfulness and goodness. I was reminded again how he walked with us every step of the way-holding our hand and getting us through. helping us see what a gift you were, whether you lived or whether you went on to heaven as a baby. I was reminded of how He had you in His arms the whole time. of how you are His, and His perfect plan for you was and is playing out. that despite my biggest efforts and mistakes, I can't ruin that. that you are His, that you are immensely loved by the King and He delights in you. that He used and is using you to bring glory to Himself. out of His great love for you, and for all of us. how humbling that He would choose you, my sweet love. you are one magnificent little girl, and I am so incredibly thankful He let me be your mommy.
I can't get enough of you. you are just becoming the coolest little kid. watching you learn what you like and what your talents are, watching your eyes light up when you realize that you're good at something (coloring, especially). seeing how proud you are of yourself that you're in the "kindergarten class" at your school (fyi: we are officially putting you in kindergarten next year. but with the way your school works now, they moved you up to their kindergarten class this year since your birthday is in august. so to make sure you know you're advancing next year, we are now calling your class the sunbrook kindergarten class and next year you will change schools to the nickajack kindergarten class).
you are still a great eater. you LOVE noodles-this certain blue box of noodles that we get at publix-that is by far your favorite thing to eat. gigi and I both keep at least 3 boxes of those at our house all the time. your favorite restaurant is orient express in vinings. you love the chicken with Chinese vegetables and you can eat almost a whole order by yourself. for both of our sakes, we usually share=) you like the fortune cookies and your favorite part is having me read you your "lucky numbers" on the back of the actual fortune. you don't care much what the words say, but you are very interested in those lucky numbers=) you still like vegetables-you eat carrots and asparagus (not the "furry" part on the tip) and green beans. you don't love brussel sprouts but you'll try a bite of anything, and i'm so proud of you for that. you love apples and bananas and oranges and grapes, strawberries...most fruit actually. you still pretty much drink only water-i'll never complain about that. if you're given anything else you'll drink about 2 sips then ask for water instead.
you love to color and draw and are pretty good at it I think. when we ask what your favorite color is you say "all the colors of the rainbow", although you're starting to pick certain ones as your favorite every now and then. sometimes you'll draw a picture and tell me that you put lots of turquoise in it because you know it's my favorite. it was also fun hearing you learn how to say the word "turquoise". =) you're getting better and better at writing your letters and numbers and even reading a few words. your favorite thing to do at school is play on the playground. you love any and all of the Disney princesses, and you invented a game called "20 questions Disney princess style" where you think of a princess and we have to ask yes or no questions to figure out which one it is. hint: 99.9% of the time you're thinking of ariel. she seems to be your favorite although you won't really say that outright-you're very careful not to choose favorites ever, of any kind. you're very diplomatic in that way. =)
you just started playing soccer and it is the cutest and funniest thing ever. in the middle of your first practice last week you ran up to me and said "mommy-my armpits are sweaty" and started giggling. and at the end I caught you smelling your armpits to see if you were stinky. I can't put into words how cute I thought this whole thing was. you're growing up sweet girl, and it is a most incredible thing to watch=)
you love to sing. you make up songs and perform on a pretend stage for us. you love to dance. you LOVE to pretend, and usually you're pretending to be at school as a new student and i'm the teacher, or you're pretending to be a princess. or sometimes we pretend to be at ice skating class or dance class.
a month or two ago I was driving you to school and I overheard you in the back seat telling adam that God loves us and will never crush us. I thought it was funny that you used the word "crush", but I figured you heard it in a song or something=) you'll help me feed him a bottle if i'm running extra late in the morning. you are the best big sister-you still love him to pieces and have never once acted like you wish he wasn't there. even when we can tell you're a little jealous or missing some attention, you have the kindest and most loving heard to that little brother of yours. i'm so so proud I can't stand it. and you're always trying to make him laugh or feel better if he's crying. at your pre-K graduation in may you were walking off the stage but then you stopped and turned around and waved and yelled "bye adam!" so he could hear you=)
we were at grandypa's store a few months ago and you got to take home with you a purple pencil with a parrot on top of it. on the way to the car you decided you desperately wanted a pink one instead of purple, and got pretty upset about it. we told you maybe next time we could get the pink one but you were very concerned that someone else would buy all of the pink ones. once you calmed down and we were driving home, you started praying out loud that God would put another pink parrot pencil in grandypa's store for us to get next time. then you looked up with these wide excited eyes and said "I bet He's doing it right now!" we've had a lot of fun conversations about the way God answers prayers and it's so neat to watch how you process all of that in your little girl brain.
so adam. my sweet little man. you are one big boy. still not surprising, and still nothing we're complaining about! most of the men in our family are pretty big guys and it wouldn't make much sense if you weren't heading in that direction too. but most people don't believe me when I tell them that you're only 8 months old=)
you're still a pretty easy baby, but slightly less easy-going as your sister was at this age. we always thought she was probably so tough and go with the flow because she had to be, so i'm glad you get to pick whether or not you're ok with the things that are happening to you=) you've just learned to give us kisses on demand and give us "high five" and you've started crawling up and pulling up on our leg so we'll pick you up when you want that. you are sweet and snuggly, but the only time you let me hold you baby style is when i'm feeding you a bottle. makes sense=) you HATE your car seat (and have since you were about a month old) but once you calm down you like watching the clouds or the trees out the window, and it's one of my favorite things to see.
you love your sister. you will violently move your head around so you can see around me and find her. you laugh and laugh when she makes silly faces or sounds or does goofy dances for you, but you do not like it when she tries to hold you in her lap=) when you get really mad and cry for a while you get a splotchy rash on your forehead. you're a wild man and into everything, and last week you had a busted bottom right lip, a busted bottom left lip, 3 large bruises/bumps on your forehead, and a cut across your tongue from your teeth. it just so happened that Catherine had a MASSIVE and horrendous looking bruise on her chin and we were kinda afraid to take you two out in public for fear of being reported. oh, and you fell out of the bath tub that same week. it didn't phase you-I had you and Catherine in there together, took her from the bath to my bed 10 feet away to give her pajamas, and we heard a big thunk in the bathroom. I knew immediately what it was and ran in there, but you were just kinda laying on the floor right outside the tub working on getting up. weird, wonderful baby boy=)
one of your favorite things to do is swing on the back porch of gigi's house or at the lake. you've recently started pushing a car around on the floor and it is the most stereotypical picture of a baby boy to me and I love it. around 7 months you started pulling up and standing and I didn't know what to do with myself. I still don't know what to do with myself, actually. I was not prepared to have a baby do these things early! especially one as curious as you-i'm so afraid you're gonna fall down our stairs! =) changing your diaper is always an adventure. you won't stay on your back for more than about 5 seconds so if i'm not quick I know I have to kinda sit to your side and let my leg lay across your chest while I change it so you won't flip over on me. i'm learning lots of new tricks with you=)
you're still a pretty good sleeper-teeth threw us off for a while there (you got 6 around 4-6 months and haven't had any new ones since) but you're getting back into the swing of it now. you go to sleep between 8-9pm and usually wake up around 6am. I absolutely wish that wake-up time was later but i'll take what I can get! you eat pretty well-not too picky so far and you like crunching on puffs. you like the song "you are my sunshine"-that's the one I've noticed has the best potential for calming you down when you're upset. I credit granddaddy for that because he loves to sing that one to you. you also like it when I dry my hair-you always flip your head around with a big grin on your face and try to see me when I turn the hair dryer on. it's never really scared you, even when you were a newborn. you seem to like the noise=) you love splashing in the bath. you also love standing up in the bath, which has been the cause of many of those busted lips and forehead bruises. the mat I put in the bathtub has helped only slightly=) you also like chewing on your toes.
here you are in some of my favorite pictures from catherine's birthday dinner. you and your sweet sister are some of the brightest lights in my life, and i'm so thankful i get to be your mommy! you fill our days with joy and with all the chaos that life and parenting and jobs and school can bring, i can honestly say that each phase gets better. you both surprise with the fact that it becomes more and more fun as you advance to the next stage and we're thanking our lucky stars that we're the ones that get to walk with you two!
all of our love, you sweet little nuggets,