Monday, January 26, 2015

Dear 2 1/2 year olds... What things do you love?

The answers you get from kids when you ask good questions never cease to be splendid. As I was cleaning up my room today I came across the transcription of this gem of a convo the boys and I once had over lunch. Since the conversation dates back to *ahem* August, draw whatever conclusions you want about the state of my room. So glad that I stopped that day to scribble our conversation out on a post-it. And now, saved forever on my personal cyberspace, I can never lose it!

M: Boys, what things do you love?
Z: Jesus!
M: Awww, really?
(Z just nods and keeps chewing.) :)
M: Gabe, what things do you love?
G: Jesus, Light o' World!
M: :) What else?
G: Don't bonk 'a head! Don't bonk 'a head... (This is an original Z and G song they sing a lot.)
M: So you guys love Jesus, and your song. What else do you love?
G: Blocks. G-Pop blocks, a' G-Ma's house.
M: I know. Playing at G-Pop and G-Ma's house is fun. What else?
G: Outside. Outside a' eat!
M: Aw, I love our lunches on the porch, too. Anything else?
Z: Jesus!
G: Swim.
Z: Swim!
G: 'a you, poot!
M: Yes, the funniest joke of all. Is that all?
Z: Shhhh (he pretends to whisper in someone's ear which is a game we play, pretending to tell the boys a secret and then zerberting them instead.)
M: What things do you love, Zeke?
Z: Play and Ni-night.

And there you have it. The great conclusions about life from my toddlers. (Funny how a few sentences can take you back to days that were so different just a few months ago!) These are some special two-year-olds I get to raise.

Wednesday, January 14, 2015

Snowed in with my faves.

The magic of a snowy morning: cancelled alarms, wintery white light coming through the window, little feet plodding toward your room. I woke up making room in bed for Gabe's stuffed hippo who he'd rolled into a taco (that's a Hill family practice - rolling babes into "tacos"), followed by Elmo, Giraffe, and then Gabe. Before he was ready to snuggle, Zeke started his morning with a fashion show of Mommy's shoes. (That is also a thing around here these days.) And then, there were two parents, two boys, two extra blankets, some shoes, animals, and toys, all snuggled under the winter morning light.

Snow days = time to choose what I want to do with the time that was previously scheduled somewhere else, and today I want to stop and take note of my blessings; I'm so aware that they are abundant. (Be forewarned, this is a Mommy post.)

Here's a little piece of the millions of things I wish I could capture forever... Just listen to all the things that make my heart want to explode around here:

-The boys are recognizing letters - all of a sudden they see them everywhere: "Mama, A!!!" (And they're right!) "D for Daddy!" Zeke is often heard saying, "G for Gabe! Where's a me?" There is a definite shortage of Z's in the world. I'm sure a p.c. group will take up this cause before he's reached adulthood though.

-Cary built us an armoire. (It's beautiful.) We have been waiting to put the doors on until we find the perfect strap hinges to complete the aesthetic (and function), but in the meantime, it's completely set up in our room, minus the doors. The boys have found the floor of it to be the perfect perch for reading, coloring, playing... It feels so classical to see them creating their own magical little spaces. Takes me back to my "The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe," days.

-Language Explosion: Little echoes of everything I've ever said... This morning when the yogurt spoon flipped out of my hand, Gabe got the word "Whoopsie!!" out of his mouth before I could. (And that's exactly what would have come out of mine.) But even crazier than that, is hearing the boys construct brand NEW sentences all day long. We're weeks past Cary and I looking at each other with the *did you know they knew that word?* faces. All words are fair game, and it's so much fun to hear these two express themselves so well.

-I'm not always the targeted audience anymore. Sometimes, when I am not engaged, the twins still do stunts or funny faces or tell stories that Gabe explains afterwards were "funny," cuing laughter and applause, and even egg each other on with ridiculous giggling or the dramatic clapping of hands or thigh slapping. *does someone else in this house do that?* I don't know how I feel about this. I hadn't realized the egocentric role they let me play for so long - all stories, impressions, and stunts were previously for my benefit.

-Inversely, a new phrase entered the household about a week ago, and I'm afraid it's here to stay. "He did it." That's right- just what you're thinking. (Mom turns around to get a towel and hears a splash in the potty. M: "Gabe, did you just drop that in the potty?!" G: No, Zeke did it. M: Zeke, did you drop that in the potty?!" Z: No, Gabe did it. *blink, blink*) What's a mom to do?! (We have known all along these were Mischievous Mighty Men.) :)

-Good and Evil is characterized by "the mean giant." I posted at Halloween about our Light the Night encounter with Goliath. He dropped in for a game of *here kid, you be David and after I make burly giant noises you can throw a stone at me, and I will fall over for old times' sake.* The boys were terrified mystified panicked entranced.... Needless to say, we've been talking about David and "the mean giant" ever since. The boys seem to recognize the same evil across the board (in every movie villain, storybook, pretend play, and even negative kid interactions. It all boils down to this: "the mean giant."

The list goes on and on...

-They brush their own teeth!  

-Gabe loves to go to the top of the stairs quickly so he can turn around and help the people coming up behind him.

-Zeke spends quite a bit of free time rehearsing his favorite musical numbers (namely the "Ice" song from "Frozen"), or taking orders and cooking muffins and chicken nuggets in his imaginary kitchen.

-Both boys are spending 20 minutes of meaningful practice on their instruments every day. It astounds me. 

-And, perhaps the best for last: the unexpected, "Mommy, I love you." "Hug Mommy!" The wet, mushy, or otherwise well-loved object being held up to me as a gift, "Mommy, yoo-oou!!" Or the seventh goodbye plus the sign for "I love you" before leaving to go to the store with Daddy, or on an imaginary journey... Those may still be the best. Could anyone love their people more? Thankful for a magical day *stuck* at home to enjoy it. <3

Sunday, January 11, 2015

Goodbye December, and Onward

Cheers! Here's to a beautiful 2015. In the spirit of fresh starts and moving forward, I'm letting go of countless painfully unfinished and unnamed posts that have filled this Mama's heart for the past 6 months. While those precious memories haven't been preserved here the way I'd like, something tells me this rich season is one that will stick with me.

The end of 2014 was full. While Cary pushes to see those three magic letters in his robe and hood, we are both spending more hours than we'd like on work so that we can, ya know, afford to eat and live in our house at the same time. At the end of 2014, twin milestones were abundant, personal sacrifices were made, our family of four grew tighter, work was fruitful, exhausted parents burned out, new dreams flickered, and all the while, God was near.

A friend introduced me to the app "1 Second Everyday." Over the month of December it captured one second of our life each day. At a time when I couldn't give more than one second to documenting our life, I'm thankful for the teeny picture of this season the compilation turned out to be.

And now, to being present and refusing to be bogged down by photos not posted and tasks not done, to seeing more of what is lasting in each moment, and trusting the Lord from whom all good things flow... Bring on the new year!