Friday, February 18, 2011

A Change of Heart

I love the quote from the movie, "Valentine's Day," where Jennifer Garner is telling Patrick Dempsey why he doesn't understand not appreciating the holiday. She says something along the lines of..." You wouldn't understand. But for the girls who remember having braces and playing saxophone in the marching band in jr. high, they have plenty of reasons not to like Valentine's Day..." She was basically describing me, except I was playing the trumpet in the concert band. Boy, those braces did a number on the inside of my lips as I jammed them into the trumpet mouthpiece... I remember listening on the intercom every year, hoping they'd call my name along with the hundreds of kids receiving flowers, candy, teddy bears, etc... Now, don't feel sorry for me! I never got anything at school from a jr. high boy, or even from my parents, but I came home to a loving family and always a gift from both my mom and dad. But I did really want to be one of the masses (it really was a mass of kids - the stage in the gym was packed with tokens of "love").
Well, I guess this year is my 11th Valentine's Day celebrated married to my husband. That's pretty wonderful :) We've started a habit of buying each other a cd on this holiday. I bought him a "best of the Beatles" cd and he bought me one of Nora Jones. A few years ago, Rich began buying the girls a gift just from him. He picks them each out a book. I figure that will change as they get a little older, but they still love it. I made a celebratory dinner for the family as my gift for them. We had sparkling cider, conversation hearts all over the table, heart pizzas, fruit salad, and heart-shaped brownies.
As my kids get older and we move into a new phase of life with them, I realize that you set the tone for what they will appreciate. If I buy them a ton of presents at every occasion, they will expect it and demand it. I love to shower them with things I know they will enjoy. But much more importantly, I want them to appreciate the relationships we share. So I'm trying to train my kids to appreciate the little things. My whole family loved just feeling special for the evening. They even got to eat the candy throughout the dinner (a tip from a friend)!

Valentine's Day is just another holiday in the list of those that are WAY more fun as a mom of two sweet, passionate girls and the wife of a great husband.

**side note: I don't whole-heartedly recommend the movie "Valentine's Day". I found it really entertaining, but as one who tries to be extremely careful about the movies we watch, there are a few questionable situations to be leery of...

Tuesday, February 15, 2011

Allie's Birthday

My baby is five! She is so cute about it, too. She keeps thinking she can do things a little bit better, now that she's five. She'll attempt something, like maybe a cartwheel or something, claim that she can do it better now "because I'm five."
A couple days before her birthday, we met with a bunch of her friends at an indoor park in town. She's been begging me for weeks to take her. I thought this was a good reason to get over there. This is just about all the friends that came, all piled in the little-spinny-thing. What a cute bunch of kids!!
Time to pile out!


A few of the kids didn't want to cooperate, but here's a few of them back at our house for cake and presents. We are really blessed with a great group of kids for both of our daughters to be friends with.

Something has been funny on my photo library and I'm just wanting to get this posted, so I'm posting another picture sideways.

And another... this is Allie's present from us: a Koala pillow pet.

This one turned for me... Allie got a special doll from her grandma and grandpa.

We celebrated on her birthday by going out to breakfast with just the four of us. The girls think IHOP is about the best place on earth! It was a rare thing for us to do, so we really had a good time. We just kinda hung out for the afternoon, and then spent the evening with Gramma Ginny and Grandpa Rich. All Allie wanted to do was do a scavenger hunt, similar to the one I did a few weeks ago that I shared about. So I made some clues and we ended up at the pet store, the carousel, and one of our favorite places for dinner, Adam's Rib and Smokehouse. It was a great day!!!

Saturday, February 12, 2011

Number 5 and She's Alive!

Today we celebrated Allie's 5th Birthday. I can hardly believe it's been 5 years since I've had a baby! I was remembering how when I was pregnant with Avery, I used to worry a lot because she would stop moving for what seemed like days at a time. Avery turned out to be a pretty active little girl, but I should have known I was in for something with Allie. That girl was an active little booger in utero! She hasn't quit since. She runs EVERYWHERE she goes and has enough energy for all of us. She keeps me on my toes at all times. Lately I find myself saying constantly while we're out, "you need to respect people's personal space." I'm always apologizing to strangers because she bumps into them or just stands right up against them! But her hugs are worth it all! That girl gives the best hugs :)

Sorry for some of the photo positions. I just didn't have the time to switch them around, but I love the pictures.
Allie, I can't imagine my life without you! I'm sure it would include a few more restful days and a few less wrinkles on my still-young face, but I wouldn't give you up for anything. I pray for you constantly and look forward to seeing God harness that energy and passion into a young woman who will bless His name. You fill my heart up to its fullest!