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So, yes, I know that I already wrote a blog post this week on finding the “Best Yesses.” And, yes, I know that I was woefully behind in my updates prior to that. But, I’m turning over a new leaf. A summer leaf. One that allows me to feed my soul and nourish my spirit.

When Abby is awake, I chase her. (That girl’s got speed!) I go to the zoo and make up animal noises for animals that clearly weren’t part of my childhood repertoire. (Anyone know what a hippo says?!?) I read the first two-three pages of several different books in keeping with her short attention span. (One day, I will know how the stories end.) We eat watermelon in the shower and go down too many park slides for my liking. We take a lot of bubble baths and blow a lot of soapy bubbles. IMG_0907

When Abby is asleep…well, now, that is a different story. She has been fighting naps for hours and hours, so I can’t say that I regularly enjoy “me time.” However, I’m making an effort to not just be on social media. To not just veg out in front of Netflix. To not just return doula work emails. But, to truly choose refreshing activities. Such as completing brief 20-minute, post-baby-friendly online workouts. Such as journaling and praying. Such as writing.

So, here we are. The second day of June, and it is supposed to reach 90 degrees in Denver today. Oh, for an A/C system…

Anyway, I find myself evaluating my days and my activities with new introspection lately. Am I encouraging Abby’s character development, cognitive development, emotional development? Am I becoming the mama and the wife that I want to be in this season? Am I honoring my own goal to be a life-long learner?

Hard questions without easy answers.

This morning, I can’t say much else with certainty except that Abby turns 14-months-old tomorrow, and I’m astounded at the changes of the past couple of months. She has clearly transitioned to “toddlerhood” with its mood swings, motor skills, communication efforts, and the occasional temper tantrum. Overall, she is one of the happiest children I know, but certainly in possession of opinions on everything! She asks to put on a hair “BOW” and necklaces as soon as she wakes up and often refuses to nurse until she is properly accessorized. She loves almost all foods, but requires variety and correct textures. She would prefer to snack on the go, and hates being tied down in anything (stroller, high chair, car seat, etc.) for very long. She loves shoes and bright colors. She points upstairs and begs for the “BATH” all of the time, and likes to splash all over the bathroom. IMG_0516

IMG_1039Every day her vocabulary grows. I’m not keeping track anymore and instead just enjoying her new sounds and words. She has now taken to communicating through pictures as well. She has a book of baby activities that she will point to when we aren’t getting the message and she would like something specific. For example, she will point to the baby getting her diaper changed when she has decided that her own feels too wet. Or, she will point to the baby getting fed when she is hungry. We certainly didn’t teach her to do this and am amazed at her creativity.

Her favorite place to go is the zoo. And, thanks, to her Grammy and Pop who bought her a zoo pass, we will be going all year. Any animal that growls makes her Top 10 list, though she loves the seals and elephants too. IMG_1007

As a mom, I’m gaining an entirely new appreciation for family. Grandparents specifically. While David was camping on a geology site in western Colorado for nearly two weeks, I visited Houston to see my parents and then enjoyed a week with my mother-in-law back in Denver. Their help was immense, and I’m so grateful for the fullness and joy that they bring to Abby’s life and my heart. I’m learning so much from them and gleaning from their wisdom. I can’t wait till David’s parents move back to Colorado permanently from Kentucky. Abby and I feel rather lonely these days without them!

Friends, I will wrap up this post with a few of my favorite photos from my Texas trip and my mother-in-law’s visit, but let me also encourage you to revel in the summer days ahead. Time is flying by so quickly, and I’m afraid I’m going to wake-up and Abby is going to be going on her first date. Her first dance. Her first youth group trip. Whether you are a parent or not, I’m sure you have experiences seasons that seem too busy to enjoy them, but let me encourage you to join me in finding some…SLOW…this summer. Some slow mornings. Some lazy afternoons. Some peaceful evenings.

Some SLOW beautiful in the busy.

~~~

Photos from Texas Trip to See My Parents (“Yaya & G-Pop”):

IMG_0676IMG_0690IMG_0708IMG_0721 IMG_0722 IMG_0723 IMG_0724IMG_0751 IMG_0750~~~

Photos from Mother-In-Law (“Grammy”) Visit:IMG_0792 IMG_0794 IMG_0808 IMG_0809

IMG_0903 IMG_0904 IMG_0905~~~

Photos with Daddy (she missed him soooo much during his two-week trip!): IMG_0664IMG_0914 IMG_0918IMG_0826

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