Friday, December 30, 2011

Monday, December 26, 2011

Pilot and co-pilot

Merry Christmas to all of our family and friends! How wonderful to celebrate our Savior's birth with another year of growth, commitment and love.
Look what fit down the chimney again this year! We wanted something that they could enjoy together and with friends for a few years. With the 75 degree weather today, we took it for a real spin around the backyard.
Captain and co-captain. Pilot and co-pilot. No, mom, it doesn't have seat belts. No, Sita, Valentina never fell out. The kids LOVED it and rode it all over the backyard.

Friday, December 23, 2011

Serious Bed Head

Valentina woke up the other morning with some serious bed head. This picture does NOT do it any justice. We all laughed out loud as she emerged from their bedroom. Completing the insane hairdo was fuzz from their freshly washed white fuzzy blanket, hence the speck on her forehead. We laughed at her expense, for she was not a happy camper and must have tossed and turned all night just working on that crazy 'do!

Friday, December 16, 2011

Two. More. Winter. Hats.

They love them!
As winter approaches, I am learning to welcome it more. It brings nice holidays and a much needed break from work, but also brings terrible weather. I honestly just wait for it to run its course so we can get closer and closer to summer.
But I get more house cleaning done in the winter. Time to reorganize and rearrange. Move things around. Out with the old and in with the new...
As I was cleaning out the closets, I found a bag of Valentina's first shoes. Tiny little sandals and Pumas tennis shoes. Sizes 0 and 1. I remember buying them, dressing her, enjoying them, and putting them away.

It. is. all. going. too. fast.

We aren't having any more kids. And I feel complete. Honestly, I would've felt complete with any number of children, one or 5. When new life comes in and joins yours...COMPLETE!

There is something uniquely special about each size of family.
I smile when I see one parent and child. How intimate. How personal, special and fun! I imagine all of the things they get to do together, all of the places they can go. The deep conversations. How that parent gets a special ticket to know everything about that child and share many memories.
I smile when I see 4 or 5 kids. How fun and loud. Lots of giggly voices and pitter patters. Big cars, big meals. Lots of laundry. Hand-me-downs and sharing.

Funny thing is, families with 4 or 5 still have special times and go lots of places. And families with one still have tons of giggles, big meals, loads of laundry and sharing.

As I held on to Valentina's shoes, I closed my eyes and knew exactly what I wanted. Not another baby. I wanted THEM. To be babies, again. Or for longer. If I could do it again with them or just stretch time out with them, I would. More. Longer. Again.
As we were ready to rest and the bedtime story was over, I held each one in my arms.
One for my right and one for my left.
I could give each one of them an eye, a kidney, one limb. Even one nostril.
I have one for each half of my heart.
Lots of intimacy and places to go. Lots of giggles, big meals, pitter patter and sharing.

Why can't my babies stay babies for just a bit more?
Because there is.
And I wouldn't be typing this right now if we all stayed babies. Ha!

Wednesday, December 7, 2011

Salvatore is 4

You were born on a Friday night. The Simpsons were on TV. You came a week early.
I went to work and was expecting another weekend to rest. While giving my 3rd graders a math test after lunch, I started to feel tired. I tried to sit it out. By the time the kids were turning in their tests and I didn't have anything lined up for them to work on next, I knew I needed to call David and the doctor. One call to the office and Estella came in looking anxious and Alma walked in looking confident. I followed her lead. Sat on the broken couch and practiced my labored breathing while many teachers stared and smiled. Called Daddy many times-no answer. He was painting your room with Tia Mayda. Reached the doc and they said to come right in. Called my dad and he drove down with Daddy so they could follow us to St. Jude. Checked in. Got a room and a robe. 4 pm. 5 centimeters. 6 pm and 8 centimeters. Epidural.
You entered the world at 7:39 p.m. and my life was given to God all over again. I said to the doctor that I loved that experience and wanted to have 10 more kids. Seriously.
Did you know that you didn't give the doctor "a good enough cry" so she kept you under the incubator and the NICU team came in to help clear your lungs? For 45 minutes. I hadn't held you yet. One nurse told me not to worry if they were letting Daddy touch you so much. I NEVER took my eyes off of you for the entire 45 minutes. Then they gave you to me and I will never forget how it felt to meet you for the first time.
I couldn't believe how good I felt. I was ready to get right up and walk. Tia Mayda and Lolo were the first to meet you. So many visitors came.
On Sunday morning, Daddy and I had our first experience as a parenting team-your carseat. It had to be perfect in order to be discharged, and it wasn't, so we struggled with no instructions or idea of how to fix it. But we did it.
On the drive home, we stopped at Babies R Us and I was amazed and how it felt to be out in public with a two day old and to see you in your seat and not feel you inside anymore.
Benny was so happy to meet you when we got home. He has adored you ever since.
I have no "awful birth story to remind you about when you are older"...I loved every single minute. You are the greatest son and brother and we love you now and forever more, sweet Salvatore.
4 is gonna rock!

Friday, December 2, 2011

Salvatore's First Christmas Program

Tonight was Salvatore's first Christmas program at his preschool. We got him and Valentina dressed up. They were watching Rio before we left.
His sweet face in the crowd. His teacher painted all of their noses red for "Rudolph the Red Nosed Reindeer." They sang three songs for the families. He was so cute...happy and waving from the back row.
Picture with his neat teacher, Miss Mary.

His group of 2 and 3 year olds did such a great job. The 4 year old class was something that should be sent in to America's Funniest Home Video. We only clapped so loudly for the 4 year olds because they were done.

Salvatore is in the middle. He told me afterwards that people in the rows were giving him the "thumbs up" and he was so proud. We were too!

Notice Valentina approaching the singers. I had to bolt quickly because she was ready to interrupt.

P.S. Dear Santa,
Some homemade cake bites if you bring me a new camera. I fall somewhere between the naughty and nice list, but my kids deserve better, clearer memories.