As the last few hours of summer are officially coming to a close, I thought I'd actually stop for a moment and record some of the sweet memories from the past few months. It's been an incredibly sweet summer, I suppose you could say I was enjoying it so much I never took a break to document it!
Since Ava was born last June, life took off at full speed. Three kids, two moves and one baby with acid-reflux (think no sleep)...those first 9 months of Ava's life, while totally precious, can sometimes feel like a blur. Once spring of this year rolled around, I finally felt like I could catch my breath. I felt settled in my new house and adjusted to life as a mom of three. Which brings me to this summer...what a sweet gift it was! I soaked up every moment of it. Especially the time with my girls. They are now 5, 3 and 1, and I totally adore these ages. There are (obviously) still many difficult days have three young kids, but I'm also daily aware that they are growing up...fast.
It's been a while, so here's a little update on each of my girls:
This girl is growing up. She can swim across the pool by herself, has her first loose tooth, is learning to read and has *gasp* started Kindergarten this month! Alathea is a total delight to me. She's perfectly created to be a first born. She loves helping me and takes delight in "coming to the rescue" to help her little sisters through out the day. She loves every bit of Kindergarten and is learning to read like a champ. I'm so grateful to have her as my oldest (or as she likes to refer to herself, as my "#1 girl, since she was born 1st"...its only logical, right?). She loves to talk, about God and really anything...I almost feel like I'm having adult conversation during the day. I love watching her amazement as we talk about God and the Bible and I'm so grateful for her heart that her little sisters would learn about God too.
While she can seem so grown up at times, I love that she's in many ways still just a little 5-year-old girl. She loves playing dress-up, playing with her doll house, her princesses, riding her bike...or her all time favorite activity- coloring. Really, this girl has been known to color for two straight hours!
I'm grateful for Alathea's seemingly effortless mix of being a social butterfly and a homebody. All neatly packaged in the same little girl. I think she's actually simply content, in whatever circumstances she's in. She loves being home and is totally content to play all day with her sisters. But she also loves every minute she gets with her friends and would be happy to spend all day playing with them. Funny thing is, she's also totally happy and content to do her school. I'm a blessed Mom to have such a happy & content 5-year-old...and I have a lot to learn from her!
Oh my, Abigail. Where do I begin with you. This picture sort of speaks for itself :)
While Alathea seems so grown-up, Abigail still seems very much, well, not in a huge hurry to grow up. She's in no way behind for a 3-year-old, but she's just content to be my little girl.
She still loves her blankie & paci (which she's only allowed when sleeping, but would have in her mouth 24hours a day if we let her). She love her Momma...I guess you could say she's my Momma's girl, or as she likes to be called, my "little buddy", because when given the opportunity, she'd be by my side 24/7. She's my grocery shopping pal, my snuggle bug and my permanent helper in all that I do. And I know there's nothing wrong with that...I think she's just happy to be three.
I make Abi sound all quiet & sweet, but obviously you all know her better than that :) She is sweet, but that girl also has a wild & crazy side too. I think her mischievious nature has caught a second wind in discovering a little-sister-partner in crime in Ava.
Abigail's also all about bling. She's regularly seen with a dozen bracelets, necklaces and a big shiny ring on her finger...topped off with 10 applications of lip-gloss, daily applied nail polish and her sparkle tennis-shoes. This is complete with a mis-matched outfit, a dirty face and her oh-so adorable crazy head of hair. Gotta love that girl :)
Abigail's current claims to fame are her ability to climb up a 15-foot fire pole with virtually no effort (no doubt in my mind, she's our athlete); her intense passion for food, especially food covered in some sort of sugar; and her ability to safely carry Ava all over the house while in search of Mommy.
Don't let this sweet little face fool you, this teeny-tiny little thing packs a whole lot of spunk. Ava is packed full of personality. Funny thing is that you'd never know unless you spend a good chunk of time with her, because she's just now starting to grow out of her "stranger anxiety- all I want is Mommy" phase. So when other people are around, Ava is glued to my side. But at home with her Daddy & sisters, she's a non-stop running, laughing, squealing 15-month old.
Ava's definately my most opinionated child...she's fiesty and spunky in the best sense of the words. This picture below is perfect- Ava facing a wave bigger than her, all by herself, with no fear, just excitement. I'm looking forward to seeing how God uses this energy & spunk as she gets older.
Our summer was full of pool days, play dates, two beach trips, a most wonderful family reunion, painting and settling into our new home and an extra amount of family time, which I'm so grateful for. Joe & I are very aware that we are blessed to have these three sweet girls to live life with.
The thing that probably brought the most smiles to me this summer was watching the girls friendships with each other grow and grow. They just love each other. Alathea & Abigail have always been the best of friends, but Ava has now happily joined the sweet sisterhood...they're like the three amiga's ;) I don't take their closeness for granted, it is a gift from God indeed!
*love them so*