Tag Archives | parenting

Tag Archives | parenting

last days and bittersweetness

The last day of school finally came for my two oldest Miller babes.

This specific last day brought on a lot of feelings – we are making some changes to our schooling next year, and facing the last day at a school we’ve loved, proved to be a lot harder than we had anticipated.

This year has been such a good one for my little girls.  They have had wonderful teachers again, and we are so thrilled about that.

Stella enjoyed all of 2nd grade with her best friend in her class – what little girl dreams are made of.  Harlo also blossomed this year – she received the “Kindness Ninja” award at the end of the year, and that fit my girl well.  I’m so glad that she shows as much kindness at school as she does here at home.  Both girls worked hard on their own to receive their school’s academic award – the Radiant Roadrunner, and both girls got their metals.  We have had a YEAR here at home with moves, and grief, and all the usual chaos that comes with a family – but our girls are strong and resilient.  I’m so proud of what they accomplished this year – and it really was ALL them. (Because mama had a rough year too!)

By the end of the day, we all had truly learned what the word “bittersweet” meant and felt like, but still decided that the direction we have been praying for, and talking over, and thinking about all these months, is in fact what will be best for us – even if it’s hard to say goodbye (for now!) to friends and teachers we love. (You have been the best Mrs. Thomas and Mrs. Bastian! My girls were so lucky this year!)

We know and believe that the future is as bright as your faith, so even though we don’t know exactly what this road ahead will look like, we have FAITH that as God brings us to things, they will always be what is best.  We do know that, and we are reminding ourselves as often as we need to.

We are still getting some ducks in a row for our next year, but I’m sure I’ll be sharing more about that as the story unfolds – you know how I roll. ;)

To my darling girls, I say to you:

You teach me every single day.  I have loved watching you go to school, learn new things, step out of your comfort zones, make friends, help people, show kindness to others all around you.  It has blessed my life to see how you both are flourishing.  I am so grateful for  happy healthy daughters who love each other, as well as everyone around them.  I couldn’t be luckier to have you two at the head of my children, and because you are the ones leading,  I know every little thing is going to be alright.

You are my favorites of all the kids in all the schools!

Next year is going to be a fantastic year – I know it.

-Mama

 

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mothers day weekend 2018

On Saturday morning I thought long and hard about what I wanted to do for Mother’s Day weekend.

I couldn’t think of anything I’d love more than staying home, doing whatever the world I pleased, without having a single time obligation.

That is exactly what I needed and wanted for Mother’s Day, and that’s exactly what I got.

After staying in my house dress for most of the day, making food for my family, getting to have an extra boy in my house (nephew Tage) to feed and love, we moseyed out on the town for some dinner.  Because I again wanted to give ZERO energy… we drove through to get the kids McDonalds and called in my favorite (Mad Pita – which Grae calls “Mada-Pita” so naturally we all call it that, too) and ate it in the car.

Then we headed to the nursery to pick up some flowers.  I requested flowers for my porch instead of my table this year, so everyone picked out a favorite for my pot and we came home and planted them.  Summer is my very favorite, and days like this are exactly why.

 

And then Sunday was a whole other story.  You win some, you lose some.  The first holidays without my sweet sis will sting a bit more than the rest, I guess.  Ang always made a deal about doing something fun on Mother’s Day, it made me miss her terribly.  But like everything else, where there is darkness there is also light.  I made a yummy batch of chili for my own little family, we delivered flowers to Angie’s grave.  I held my babies extra long at bedtime and went to bed with a full, albeit aching, heart.

I am so grateful for this good life I live, and so grateful to be able to celebrate so many amazing women in my life on mother’s day, including our own dear mothers who are loving grandmothers to our sweet babes.  I have a team of mothers (and not-yet mothers who bless me my children with their mothering natures anyway) that rally behind me and make it possible to live my life at the capacity I do.

I am also especially grateful that when I started this blog at the tippy tippy top of my mothering journey, you sweet women have checked in with me along the way, have written me, connected with me over motherhood, miscarriages, longing for children, having lost children.  We have prayed for each other, and your love has carried me through more than you’ll ever realize, and has helped me to fully embrace my own motherhood.  Thank you for loving and supporting me, and letting me share my heart with you over the years.

Happy Mothers Day to you from us here at Miller & Co!

 

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simple joys | backyard

Whether we lived in our 900 sq foot condo and had only a backyard porch,

Our little 2 bedroom rental with just a little patch of grass,

Our old rental downtown with a big, old yard and room to roam,

Our first home we could really make ours, and poured our heart into a backyard that was ours,

And now dreaming up a new space for the next years of our lives to unfold….

watching our babies play in our backyard is one of the simplest joys of my life.  No matter what our backyard looks like.

 

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a word from the mother

I am finding myself in a whole new season lately.
I have FOUR children, a whole family all of my own.  My dreams came true, and it’s surreal to be living it.
I have passed many of the infant/baby stages with no real promise of more coming our way, so that is also really different for us.

Major, my baby, is gaining serious momentum toward full-blown toddler hood.
I don’t think it’s any secret that having a boy changed my heart (some may say it grew 3 sizes that day), but mercy me, I see very clearly why God sent me 3 little girls ahead of him.
This boy of mine is busy, busy, busy, busy.  I am turning around to clean one mess up, and he’s on the top shelf of something else.  I get him down and he’s running off to find the next bit of mischief he can find.  He is into my cupboards, drawers, pantry, baskets, bathrooms, any pile of anything.  I am on my toes and busy literally chasing him most of the day, besides his glorious glorious nap time – bless my heart.
He snuggles me, he adores me, he lights up when I walk into a room.  He will hang on the couch with me forever, never fights me (except when I’m changing his diaper!), and keeps me and his sisters swooning our days away.  I get it, guys.  Baby men.. nothing quite like ’em. He is talking more all the time, and is 100% boy in every single way.  His pudgy little feet stomp around, constantly snacking on something, car in one hand, ball in the other.  He loves me to sing to him and sings along with me to ‘twinkle-twinkle’, ‘you are my sunshine’, and giggles when I begin his night time lullabye.
Even if he does refuse to stay my forever-infant, I am still just as head over heels in love with that son of mine.

HOWEVER, don’t let that get you mistaken.  My girls are the girls of my dreams.

Harlo is just effortlessly cool (I felt her distinctly pass me up at age 8), she is stunningly beautiful and doesn’t even realize it.  She is tender and kind and gentle and good.  She is getting so mature and I’m loving this new layer to our relationship.  We often stay up way too late chatting in her bed, she’s my right hand planner, and she’s in charge of all the organization in our home and doesn’t get annoyed with me yet.  I love her! Harlo is also made up exactly like her father, and (almost) nothing  like me, so she keeps me busy working on how I communicate with her, paying close attention to whether she gets enough love from me, worrying over our relationship because of our differences, and appreciating so much how much she’s opened my soul and changed me, and how I look at people, forever and ever amen.
Because of our differences though, we find this deep understanding with one another.  I can clearly see when she’s at her limit, and she can see when I’m at mine.  We have a certain respect for one another, and we help calm each other rather than rise tension with one another.   We seem to balance each other.  She more than anyone else I can see the reason she came to my life.  Because she is the only one who could have changed everything for me, and keeps changing everything for me.  My love for this girl runs deep.

Stella is just the funnest.  Picture a skipping, twirling, giggling dress-wearing, baby doll-loving 7 year old, and you’ve got Stella.  Stella is the best server in the family.  She is always getting drinks or snacks for someone, assisting Harlo with this, or helping Grae with that.  She’ll keep Major entertained while I cook, and thinks up games for everyone to play.  We all often say “Stella’s the best!” because she’s always leveling up the love around here.  Stella marches to the beat of her own drum and is completely not bothered by what anyone else thinks – exactly what I adore in her father, I love this about her.  I find myself praying for protection over this about her.  I hope she always marches on and never bends to the pressure of the world.
Stella, like me in so so so many ways, is also like me in the sassy-mouthed, loud-mouthed, no-hard-time-expressing-her-feelings kind of way.  Because of this, she’s always the first one to stick up for one of her siblings against me, the one I’m reminding most to watch her mouth, and reigning her in from emotion-overload.  I cringe at myself inside when I have to get after Stella because I can feel the internal smirk of my parents.  Oh mercy.  When they said “I hope you get a daughter just like you!” (in both good and mad ways) I surely did in my Stella. :D It’s because of this though, that I don’t worry about our relationship (aside from her teen years! Bless.).  We speak the same love language and sort through things the same way.  I know this will be such a blessing for a life-long relationship, especially in her adult years.

Grae.. Oh man, what can be summed up about that girl?  She is finally moving on from ferocious toddler moodiness that started around age 1 and we’re hoping now that 4 is around the corner, we’re seeing the end of it.  She is communicating so well and beginning to understand how to cope through her rather complex emotions. :D The very unexpected surprise of Grae is how much of a lovey girl she is.  She is very affectionate, so snuggly, always telling me she loves me, or Major, or anyone else, out of the blue.  That girl can take you from 0-60 and back in absolutely no time.  With my older two I was like “They’re darling, but in order for them to develop properly, we mustn’t give in to every whim..” with Grae I’m like “So sue me, I give in to every single whim.”
Grae has me wearing out the pages of “the strong-willed child” in The Child Whisperer, and boy does that fit her to a T.  One tip that has been so helpful in that book has been to read “Let them do what they want to do with your set boundaries, because they’ll likely find a way to do it anyway.” Switching that idea in my head has made a world of peace between Gigi and I.  She is an excellent little artist at her age, and now I see those years with the sharpies all over my (damn) house were just her inner creativity yearning to come out!
Grae girl is a total tom-boy.  Obviously this is not anything she picked up at home with me and her two very girly sisters.  She just likes what she likes, and what she does like is blue and green and cars and reptiles and superheros.  She looks like a real-live tinkerbell and is usually dressed in a gecko costume. Ha!  She is the best thing on the planet.  Seriously.

My life is completely full as a mother and wife, and I’ve had to be intentional about shaving a bit of time for me and my passions.  That is soooo okay with me though.  These are the years.  The full and fleeting family years.  Even though it can sometimes feel consuming and overwhelming, these are the years I’ve dreamed of, and I am going to soak them in every last drop.

Some things that are necessary for my sanity:

monthly cleaning lady, writing (making a priority after months of slacking), weekly date nights, church on Sundays to refill my cup, late night chats with friends after kids are in bed, boundaries from the world and outside pressures, Maskcara makeup, and my happy planner.

 

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