joyous birthday celebrations

Posted on October 2, 2015





After such a difficult past few months, our hearts are especially full of joy in celebrating the birthdays of our two little girls.

Our days are often full of picking up the same messes, reminding Valencia not to climb onto the kitchen counters, and pulling all manner of things out of Tessa’s mouth even though we feel like we are vacuuming the whole house every 45 minutes. Just in the past 48 hours:

  • I walked into the bathroom to find Tessa playing in 1/2 in. of water on the bathroom floor that was the result of an overflowed toilet. yuck.
  • Valencia dumped a bag of lentils across the whole kitchen floor.
  • Valencia crashed onto the floor in a full meltdown for the following separate, but apparently tragic, issues: I cut her banana the wrong way. I told her she couldn’t watch a video yet. I took her off the 6 foot high shelf she had climbed up. I asked her to put away the play dough.

Order and calmness are just not words to describe our lives right now. And sitting at my computer snatching a few minutes of (mostly) uninterrupted time to write this, it is easy to have the perspective that the messes and the meltdowns are so not that big of a deal in the grand scheme of things. It’s easy to have the perspective that God is using these events to reveal to me just how impatient I can be, and just how selfish I am with my time and space, and just how self-righteous I can be toward my sweet babes (“I made you a delicious dinner out of food you love and you are just going to throw it on the ground; how dare you treat me that way?!”)

But in the midst of the chaos, my vision becomes muddy. I can’t see anything beyond my own frustration.

I can’t see the gift they are to me in a thousand ways. That through them I am slowly (painstakingly slowly) being shaped into the person God created me to be-joyful and patient and creative. That they are unique little people with God’s fingerprints all over them.

But birthdays are a great time to reflect on the ways that the person being celebrating is such a gift to us.

So here are this mama’s reflections on each of her little girlies on their birthday (month).

Valencia Rose  {turns 3}

So full of life and sunshine. This girl takes on the world with vigor. She loves to go on “expeditions” whether to collect leaves, pick berries, or just run wild through the unexplored crannies of our neighborhood. People of all shapes, colors and generations are her favorite. Eager to interact at all times of the day, toys hold nothing to joys of social interactions.  Valencia loves to dance, play in the dirt, wear princess dresses, be read to, paint, cook with mama, and fix things with daddy. She reminds me daily that there is so much about this world that should inspire wonder. Mommy, look at the moon! Mommy, look, sister is smiling! Mommy look at this bug! Wow, Mommy look at all that! (Candy isle). And dozens of small things (like, you know, Frozen bandaids, a single gummy bear, bubbles, and a heart shaped pancake). Her fiery hair matches her fiery spirit, doing nothing half-way. I live constantly trying to balance reigning her in without crushing her exuberant love of life. Daily I look at her and simultaneously think, watch out world, and Lord help me!  {{ Happy three years to our big girl! }}


Contessa Rachel {turns 1}

Oh how I could just hug this little bug all day long (yay for baby carriers!). She is the sweetest of sweet babes. Even the gas furnace guy who came by kept asking, “Is she always this smiley?” Yes, the answer is yes. Her face lights up when she watches her sister do anything. She loves to snuggle, especially in the earliest hours of the day, when her warm little body will nestle up to me. Sardines and avocados are favorites. Splashing in the water bring about instant infectious laughter. Throughout her time in the hospital she continued to smile, even at the people who came to poke and prod at her, and in the months since she has revealed that in the midst of all her sweetness, there is also a very determined spirit. Determined to not be left behind when her sister is playing in the other room, determined to pull herself up to standing at the couch if she is convinced there is something she can’t live without. We celebrate every little bit of progress she makes in recovering the use of her legs. She has been such a delightful addition to our family this past year, we can’t imagine her not being with us.  {{ Happy one year to our littlest girl! }}





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