Monday, December 27, 2010

A Merry Old Soul...

Last week, December 22nd to be exact, Allison turned 12.  I wanted to post something on her actual birthday, but I couldn't.  It wasn't because I was too busy or too tired or that I had a case of writer's block.  I just couldn't find the words to describe what this child means to me. 

Twelve years ago, I would've never imagined that the tiny brown-eyed baby I held in my arms would become a beautiful, wise young woman.  The fact alone that I can describe Allison as a "young woman" ages amazes me!  Allison has always been an "old soul".  I forget sometimes when we're having a conversation that she is only 12.  I often ask her advice and opinions on things, because I know she is guided by God and that alone weighs heavily on her way of thinking.  I know she seeks God's wisdom and counsel and I am always inspired by her example.  It may sound a little strange, but I look up to her. Her little sisters do everything they can to be "just like Allison", in their words.  They want to dress like her, act like her, talk like her.  I try so hard to teach my girls to be themselves (how do you teach a five and three-year-old that anyway?!) but even they see that special something in Allison that makes them want to imitate her. She is the kindest, most compassionate person I know and it pains her to see anyone suffer.  I sometimes find her teary-eyed after seeing a commercial for an animal shelter or the Salvation Army.  Some may call that being a drama-queen, but I think her tender heart is what will make her great in this life.  I've noticed that Allison wants to make the lives of those around her better, whether it's by making them a card or baking them cookies.  She just wants to let people know she loves and appreciates them. 

Even as I type, I'm still struggling to put the words together to accurately describe how much I love her.  Don't get me wrong, I love all four of my babies beyond words.  Just when I feel like my heart can't hold any more love for them, it finds a way to.  I have a different bond and different connection with each of my daughters.  I treasure each of them for their unique personalities and for what makes them "them".  I think what makes my bond with Allison special is that she made me a mother first.  The moment she was born, my life was forever changed and I will always be grateful to her for that.  The second I held her, I felt love that I had never felt before.  I didn't know it was humanly possible to love someone to the depths that I love her. 

In her 12 years, Allison has brought more joy, more happiness and more love than most people have in a lifetime.  She is our blessing and everyday I thank God for that precious, wonderful girl. 

Saturday, December 11, 2010

That Perfect Little Face...

Our sweet Laurie turned three today, and I can't believe how quickly time has flown.  When I was pregnant with her, I tried to imagine who she'd be like.  Would she be like Mary Carolyne and Ryan; outgoing with a big personality, or would she be like Allison and me; a bit more on the shy side?  Never did I guess that she would be the perfect "mash-up" of everyone, with a million times more energy than all of us put together! 

When she was born, one of the first things I noticed was the dimple on her left cheek.  I think it was God's finishing touch on that perfect little face.  It wasn't long before her personality began to develop.  She was such a busy baby, always on the move.  I never had to baby-proof our house until Laurie came along!  She was so curious about everything and everything she did was different than the way her sisters did it.  Even her straight hair is a stark contrast to Allison and Mary Carolyne's spiral curls. Laurie is our child that we never know what she's going to do.  Before her, I never had to clean crayon off a wall, or call 911 because a child jumped off the bed and knocked herself unconscious, or tell a child to stop splashing in the toilet water.  I've learned never to ask Laurie why she is sticky, wet, or where all my gum went.  The answer may be downright frightening :)  I've learned to just clean her up and send her on her way.  We affectionately call Laurie, "Pigpen" after the "Peanuts" character.  She attracts dirt and mess wherever she goes, but I wouldn't recognize her otherwise.  The child is more comfortable when she is messy, and I love her for that.  Laurie has made me appreciate the differences in all of my children.  She, in her three short years, has made me realize that a home is meant to look "lived-in" and that crayon marks on the walls are just a sign that kids are present.  That being said, thank goodness for Mr. Clean Magic Erasers :)

Our three years with this sweet baby have been a learning experience, to put it mildly.  She has brought more light and love to our family than we could ever imagine.  She has kept us on our toes and kept our lives interesting.  That perfect little face has blessed our lives in more ways than we thought possible.  Happy birthday, sweet Laurie Beth :)

Monday, December 6, 2010

Well, At Least You Make Me Laugh...

Tonight, Ryan was trying to help Allison with her math homework.  The lesson was on discounts and percents, and Allison was really struggling with it, to the point of tears.  We told her to take a little break and Ryan could help her finish it later.  She walked out of the room, and I said to Ryan, "Poor Allison, I remember having a hard time with math too."  Ryan replied, "Yeah, I never had a hard time with math, but I could never memorize stuff.  Like when I was asked to memorize all ten continents!"  I laughed so hard!  Ryan, unamused, said, "Lindsey, I tell you my deepest and darkest and you just laugh at me."  I couldn't help it though.  I'd rather have a fella that makes me laugh than one who knows all "ten continents" anyway :)