Wednesday, September 25, 2013

17 months-little Lil is growing up

Beginning to use spoon
Can use fork
Loves to dance and loves music
Likes to laugh when I catch her taking her piggies out

Loves to listen to books
Can sign: water, all done, please, again, sleep

Talking a lot more
Can say all done, momma, dada, Gus Gus, dog, duck(sounds like duck)

Waves bye bye
Blow kisses
Raises her hand when we say Amen
Knows that at night when we pray it means bedtime
Loves to give kisses on pictures 
Loves Madeline. 
Recently found a love for soup.   

Climbs up stairs independently
In the toddler gymnastics class now
Can go down some slides
Will enjoy the swing for a little bit

Loves dogs
Learning to sign: butterfly, dog, pig, bunny
Knows what sounds a dog, bear, and lion make

Dear my sweet girl,
You are a sweet, gentle, beautiful little one. You have taught me love and persist able. You are learning so much right now and it is a thrill to watch you. You have blessed our lives greatly and I pray everyday that you will be a bold leader for others to follow. My sweet Lil, keep exploring, the world is yours to be discovered. 

Saturday, September 21, 2013

What my daughter has taught me

You here it all the time "your kids will change you." "They'll teach you patience."

Sure sure, I understood that because being a teacher, I learned so much from my students.
But things are much more personal when the lessons come from your children.

But Lil has taught me how resilient children are. It was always a fear of mind that I would have to go back to work. That fear was crippling. When it was brought up, I refused to let it be an option. My thoughts were "I can't do that to her," "She'll never forgive me," "It will ruin her." It brought me to tears often. I felt that I would be choosing work over her. The love that I had for her has grown immensely and her adaptability with me going back to work has made me comforted and proud. Even though I am only working part-time, I miss her dearly during the days and often have to give myself a reality check that I am NOT ruining her.

Lil has taught me how learning is a process, not a destination. Being a teacher, I was destined to make sure my babies were the smartest. That they would be walking first, talking up storms and initiating friendships with others. I wanted to be able to brag about how 'advanced' she was. Thank you Lilly for not letting me be like that. Seriously, who likes to be around those people?!!! As others around her were crawling and getting into things, Lilly would sit and watch. She would entertain herself with a toy and was content with watching things around her. As her first birthday approached, I was eager to want to push her into walking. But I was reminded to as to what kind of parent I wanted to be: A Pusher or An Encourager. I chose the latter. And its been such a rewarding experience to see now all that she can do. Not because I pushed her, but because she developmentally can. I love to see her work problems out and be persistent. I love to see how cautious and calm she is. Its her personality after all. Despite the comments "Oh you just got an easy one," I truly believe that it is our approach to child rearing and finding the one that encourages and brings out the best in children. Even though it sometimes makes me sad that Lilly is in such an independent stage, I am SOOO PROUD that she has developed confidence in herself.

The life of a little one IS hard. Its so easy to say, "What's so hard, you're a baby. You've got it made." I know I am guilty of it. But seriously, imagine being in a place, you've never been and trying to communicate and navigate it all. When you ask someone in this new place a question. They mutter something to you. You continue to ask. That would be very difficult.They get more upset. You ask one more time, and they shout at you and point for you to leave. Do you get where I'm coming from (if not, I have a weird affinity for analogies, if it doesn't make sense, I apologize)And although Lilly gets, what I think, is frustrated easily, all of this really is new for her. And she hasn't yet developed the ability to make choices, rationalize, or understand the why. For goodness sakes, I still don't understand the why. I really feel like this lesson is the most important one I've learned. It's so easy to think that our stage of life is the most difficult, but I think we've got it easier than the little ones. They are learning trust, learning independence, learning about their environment.
What a blessing it is to be able to have a little one. To see them grow. Babies are such a reminder to love the simplicity in life and be challenged by the BIG world around us!

What lessons have you learned from others?

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Wednesday, September 18, 2013

Snap Shot of Growing Up

With life being so busy the past few weeks, I honestly am in awe that I have found the time to read, run, and have a little fun. I've had to make some adjustments and adjust quickly because I quite frankly haven't had time to deal with it. My house isn't clean. Laundry sits in a basket as I type this. My life is consumed with juggling my time and making sure dinner is served before Lilly is too tired and before my sister has to head out for school.

But today was a good day...A GREAT DAY!!

It was as if today went in slow motion. You know those days when you are just ON!
I also felt like maybe today was going in slow motion because I felt like me.
That last sentence is weird to write but its so true.
It was as if I was shedding a layer and becoming more grown up.

I guess that is what it must feel like, I've grown up always being responsible, but today I had a new confidence about it.

Teaching went successfully, Meeting with my dream manager...amazing, Lilly time...a blast, and community group...wonderful.

Maybe things are just coming together.

I've waited so long to be a part of a community at church. It's so nice that it works for us. I really feel blessed. There is just something so special about connecting with others, whether at church, through email, online, or reading their stories. Connection is innate in us all and if we aren't connected, I don't think we are really whole.

Since being back at Tricks Gymnastics, I read the book Dream Manager, which is freaking amazing and the fact that Tricks has a dream manager is wonderful. I meet with my DM  once a month and talk to her about my life...and I get paid for it. I'm so grateful to Tricks that they have found this resource important to provide their employees. How great is it to be able to have some time to spend with someone chatting about your dreams as a individual, about your accomplishments and weaknesses without being measured up or feeling inferior. In fact, it does just the opposite, I feel empowered.

So maybe it's not me growing up...maybe I'm just coming into my shell...of being more confident in who I am.

For so long I think I just had the attitude 'fake it till you make it.' Today felt like a small step towards me shedding that and really being confident. I hope that I can continue this and be able to let go of my insecurities.

I think we are constantly in a state of competition and feeling of defeat that WE never appreciate ourselves, as we wait longingly for others to recognize us. We stress over those who have made our day miserable. Recently learning about the 7 Habits of Highly Effective People, we are asked to have a proactive mind and conscientiously choose to have a good attitude. WHen we let others' issues plague us, its hard to stay positive. And honestly, I believe we aren't really encouraged as a culture to address issues with others (oh, except passively on Facebook :). But then that adds to our stress as we have not only our own feelings to deal with we are now worrying about others.

I digress....

It was a good day

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Sunday, September 15, 2013

Lilly Mae 16 months

Signs: Water, All Done,  More, Please, Sleep
Knows how to do Downward Dog and Happy Baby yoga poses


Likes to dance on the chairs.
Loves to be held and danced with.
Knows how to clean up.
Knows how to do apart together feet
Learning to say more each day.
Good at communicating her needs.
Loves to be outside! 

First Fall (8-25-13)
Doing great with mommy going back to work

Likes to be chased.
Likes to play in the shower
Loves her pup Gus Gus
Points out dogs when she sees them or hears them

Starting to run
Goes 'round and round'

Likes trampoline and parachute at gymnastics

Weighs 24.2 lbs
Height: 32 inches

Loves to put lids on things
Enjoys taking things apart and putting them back together
Likes to be chased
Loves to dance
Can find her 'bebo' (bellybutton)

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Friday, September 13, 2013

Health and Fitness

Hooray!! Glad to be back to this. I always look forward to it.
We are in the second week of the Emeals planning. Its going really well. I love that I don't have to meal plan. If I don't like something or I know it won't be a family favorite I just modify it. It's great because the meals are based on what is on sale at Safeway. It's been such a life saver. Not so much a time saver, but I am learning to adjust my schedule.

I've been doing lots of running. I've been trying to get up early and go for a run. Its's so quick and I feel great the rest of the day. However, I have been experiencing some tight knees. I've been bad with my stretching and yoga. I tried Blogilates 100 burpee challenge and did not finish it. Boo! But hey I've got a challenge to complete. I'm so hard on myself due to my competitiveness that I am easily discouraged and I get upset with myself. But I can be perfect at everything, there's no fun in that. 

I'm currently reading:

And loving it so so much!!
Next up are:

It's hard to get some of my reading in. I've fallen far behind on my Bible reading plans lately and am excited about getting those completed. But these books are so tempting to read instead. Until I finish my plans, they sit quietly on my nightstand. 

How is your week?

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Thursday, September 12, 2013


Yowzers!! Its been a crazy few weeks. Even though I'm only back to work parttime, I feel like I have had NO TIME. Poor blog, its been on the back of my mind, but I just havent had quality time to get it all done. 

Being back at work has really been fun. I honestly never thought that I'd feel that way. I know that it was the right time because Lilly is doing so well and so am I. We are so lucky to have had my sister move in with us so that we have someone to watch Lilly. 

And I missed teaching. 

It so weird to type that. I remember last January fighting to not go back to work. Not because I didn't want to work, but because raising Lilly was so imporatnat to me. And now I have the best of both worlds. Lilly is learning to be independent as well as myself. 

I think we have both grown a lot.

It was important for me to go back to teaching this year because of the Teacher Credential Clearing Process in California. It's called BTSA and it can be a pain. I like it, especially all the forms (I was definitely meant to be a teacher), but there is a lot of outside commitment athat makes it hard when you are trying to find child care. 

If you live in California and are a teacher you can skip this next little paragraph :)

California requires its teachers to have a Clear Credential. In order to do this you must be a teacher and go through BTSA (Beginning Teacher Support Assessment). BTSA requires two years where you meet with a veteran teacher, attend professional development workshops and use case studies to strengthen a weakness in your teaching. If it sounds like a lot of paperwork, IT IS!!

But anyway its been a lot of fun, my quirkiness and loud voice is back and it feels good to to be back teaching even if its just a few days a week.

How was going back to work? Did you have any reservations?

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Wednesday, September 11, 2013

Napa Trip

It was a much needed trip! We have been needing to take a little vacay and it was well overdue to see our friends new home. We had such a wonderful time. Lilly loved hanging out with her Uncle Lucas and Auntie Mae Mae. We may have even got her to say Lucas :) My girlfriend seriously has the cutest house. Definitely made me want to start working on some Pinteresque ideas.

We also got to go down toward Hayward and visit some friends and their new precious baby! How stinking cute is he?!
It was fun being around a newborn, forgot how little they are.

Lilly was still a bit unsure about there being a baby around.

But she loved playing with their dog, Copper.

Her favorite thing this weekend was crawling in Auntie Mae's lap and sitting with her.

Sunday we got to visit Oxbow. So fun!! We enjoyed a little taste at Kara's Cupcakes  (who was runner up on Cupcake Wars!!!). I had an organic blackberry cupcake that was to die for. So delicious and light. We also had to try Three Twins Ice Cream. All that sugar did me in. I had a big tummy ache, but it was worth it!!

Have you been to Napa? What are your favorite restaurants?

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