On Saturday I turned twenty-seven. Crazy how age catches up with you. I feel like I only just turned 22.
My sister flew in for my birthday and it was so fun to have her here for my special weekend. I indulged in all the simple things I love – food, fun, and family. We didn’t do anything too crazy, but I got taken out to lunch, got to nap whenever I wanted, and choose wherever we ate the whole weekend. It was definitely a great birthday weekend.
I am in a sweet and busy chapter of life right now. I have school aged kids, mixed with young ones at home, expecting a newborn in about 6 weeks. My life really feels like it’s bursting at the seems a lot of the time, but along with the madness comes this contentment that I’m where I’m exactly where I’m supposed to be. At 27, I never thought I’d have (almost) 4 kids, but I have learned in my twenties to lean on faith and trust in God, and I hope that my life is a reflection of that. I have more blessings than I can hold in my heart, I feel. Though my days aren’t as simple as they once were, they are wonderful. My days as a mother and wife fulfill me, and I am grateful for that.
A typical weekday starts for us around 7:30.
The girls are usually already awake, and we start breakfast.
Mr. Miller makes Harlo’s lunch while I help the girls get dressed and do their hair.
We fight over outfits, hairstyles, and matching shoes.
Then we try to find shoes, which always proves to be difficult.
I double check backpacks, smooch them and squeeze them, and send them out the door.
By now, usually Grae is awake waving and yelling “bye girls! Go to school! Bye Harlo! Bye Stella!” from the front porch.
Once the girls are off, I try to sit down and write a bit.. which these days usually don’t happen because Grae wants to “hold jew” then “watch elmo?” then “watch gumpy?” then “I chokit mik?” then back to “hold jew mama, I hold jew!” and by the time I’ve met her needs, it’s time for Stella to get home from Kindergarten, I quickly get ready and we head to grab lunch with Daddy.
Lunchin’ together is a big part of the Miller lifestyle, and it’s something I have tried not to take for granted with Brady’s flexible schedule. I love that we live close to his work and we can see each other during the middle of the day. Of course, some days are busy and on those days I usually try to swing him by a drink or he brings me one to break up the day a bit. For me, that’s my breath of fresh air and a little recharge to keep my day going with the girls. Sometimes I require a little pep talk, some days I need a good venting session, some days I have a few issues I’d like him to weigh in on. On these kinds of days, I’m extra grateful for a husband who loves me despite my short comings and who seems to have endless amounts of patience for me.
After lunch, it is naptime… for mommy and Grae. At this stage of pregnancy, I pretty much must nap each day to make it to the finish line. A lot of times Stella naps with me on the couch or watches a show, or browses American Girl stuff online (her latest obsession). If I can get an hour of rest, it’s a great day. Too soon, Grae is up and Harlo is getting home from school.
Even though the bus drops off right in front of our house, I make sure that everyday I’m on the sidewalk to greet Harlo from school. She tells me I don’t have to do that, but I know she likes it. Usually I have her little sisters jumping and shouting for her arrival. I love the way her face lights up when she gets off the bus and sees her welcome wagon.
After school is a whirlwind. My girls chat with me about their days, I go through school folders, and help with homework. After homework we do chores and tidy things up and get ready for the evening.
Ideally, this is when I start dinner, but I’ve got to say this last leg of pregnancy has been getting the better of me and more often than not, I don’t get dinner made. :\ This is one of the biggest things I miss about my non-pregnant self. I find myself longing for the days that I have enough energy to keep up with my life. The good news is, I have learned they will return.
By the time our afternoon of responsibilities, arguments, whining, playing, laughing, twirling, working are done, Mr. Miller is pulling in the driveway. We load up in the car and usually find ourselves at Cafe Rio for dinner. Cafe Rio is one place that our entire family can agree on. (No easy task!)
At dinner we catch up for the day. My favorite part of the whole day. We talk about our favorite parts of the day, and discuss our least favorite parts and weigh in on issues we might be having. We laugh and be silly and I remind my kids 2,303 times to take bites of their food and admire my husband across the table, feeding bites off his plate to the wild toddler.
We arrive home from dinner and start the bedtime brigade.
The girls can get themselves mostly ready for bed, just with a few hundred reminders of what to do next.
Daddy jammies the little one, and hands her off to me.
I cozy her up onto my big round belly, sink back in her rocker and sing her a lullabye. Usually she requests the song, and then sings it along with me.
These are the moments I am almost sure my heart is going to burst right out of my chest. I just can’t take on any more love.
After her lullaby, she has me list off all the people who love her. What a sweet reminder each night.
After I lay her down and tuck her in, I sneak in for a prayer with the big girls and then I walk my aching feet and hips to my bed, where I stay for the rest of the night.
Those few hours after the girls go to bed are the only uninterrupted minutes of my day. I constantly battle between soaking up some me-time and getting caught up on sleep.
Because I’m a night owl, me-time almost always wins out.
After Brady gets caught up with his night, he joins me and we hang out together in bed for a few hours.
These days, most of those hours are spent watching the little animal in my belly wiggle around, discussing the miracle of life, and maybe toss around a few baby names.
We talk about our dreams and goals and where our life has brought us so far.
I remember the guy I fell in love with and I am dumbfounded at how our relationship has grown. There’s no one in the world I would rather lay in bed chatting with, and I think that is really something to cherish.
When it’s way too late, I click off my lamp and silently thank God for all my blessings, ask for guidance for the days to come, and grace as I know I will need it. I ask for the love between me and that Mr. Miller to be blessed, and for our children to be happy and healthy. I pray for our families and friends who might be struggling that they may seek God and see Him working in their own lives.
And sometime after that, I drift off to sleep.. where I will toss and turn as much as I can with this giant belly, get up to pee, get woken up by baby hiccups and jabs to the ribs, and soon light will be peeking through my window and I’ll be promising to go to bed earlier from now on.
Then the alarm goes off and we start all over again, much the same and yet so much new each day.
I am living a good, good, good life.