Tuesday, April 24, 2012

small things

Dearest Lily,

So much has happened this month, so many "big" events and circumstances, that I'm finding myself  ...to borrow a friend's phrase ....enjoying the small things :)



Itty-Bitty Pedicures
 I haven't given you one since last summer! You sat absolutely mesmerized on the bathroom counter of the hotel last week as I brushed each toe with melon-colored polish and exclaimed, "pretty, Lily!" with each stroke. Afterwards you marched proudly over to your sister and wiggled piggies furiously while grinning and pointing down at them. The gold gladiator sandals I slipped onto your feet were gifts at your baby shower two years ago...there are perks to that extra chromosome, one of them being that we get to enjoy trying on new items for several years after receiving them instead of months.
Which brings me to...




New Outifts

I dug into a giant-sized rubbermaid container a week ago, in search of spring clothes for our trip. Expecting to find a few random items that would be a good start on a summer wardrobe, instead I found dozens of pastel-hued pants, floral blouses and matching hairbows, sundresses and sandals with the tags still on....it was like Christmas in April. As hard as it was to say goodbye to all those snuggly sweaters and knit leggings and crocheted caps, you now have a closetful of darling outfits (size 12-18 months!) waiting to be worn.


And speaking of new things, I am enjoying...


Pearly White Baby Teeth

They literally sprang up overnight. Last year we spent many tear-filled days walking the floor with teething troubles, but thankfully these new ones came in unannounced. I only caught a glimpse of them the other day during our impromptu photo shoot, and I'm sure they weren't there the day before! There is only one thing that comes close to rivaling their cuteness ...



Crinkly-Eyed Smiles

Somewhere in that stack of "What to Expect From Your Baby With Down Syndrome" pamphlets they sent home from the NICU, they forgot to include the fact that almond eyes are the cure-all for just about any type of blues. Your daddy and I could be stuck in bed with the flu for several days (ahem!) and yet one little princess pulls herself up onto our sickbed and flashes those pearly whites and half moons.... and we're both grinning ear to ear. You're a charmer for sure.




The Great Outdoors

Although officially spring began on March 21st, it's taken our little neck of the woods a whole month to wake up to the fact. I just told your daddy last week that I could not believe the kajillion leafless trees around our house were still looking very much like winter was here to stay...and as if in unison with your little chompers, they bloomed overnight. After spending half my life in a virtually seasonless state (actually there were seasons- hot and hotter), I am now convinced I never want to live any place where leaves don't change colors.

And I'm pretty sure you agree...you are obsessed with the great outdoors. It doesn't matter how grumpy or tired or hungry you are- if I say the magic words, "Lily, do you want to go OUTSIDE?" ...your entire face lights up, you start nodding your head frantically, and you race to the sliding glass door. Our deck surrounds the entire house, and you love to race from one end of the house to the other, laughing and tripping and waving through the windows to anyone who is watching from inside. You love to explore, you are oblivious to the wind or even sprinkling rain, you just want to stay and play outside as long as we'll let you. I've never seen any of our children love being outside as much as you do, and I would just love to know what is going on in your little head while you're enjoying it all.








Toddlerhood

I talked about this when you turned two, but now more than ever I am so aware of the fact that you're not a baby anymore. I realized it even more at conference last week, when everyone who hadn't seen you in a year kept exclaiming how much you've grown up. People couldn't believe you were walking - make that running - everywhere, even though you turned two in January. I'm sure they forgot your age because of how tiny you are, but you have also changed so much developmentally in the last six months as well.

You have definite preferences in everything...you shook your head "NO!" at me one day last week when I offered cheerios for breakfast in the hotel room. I asked if you wanted yogurt instead, and you signed it, then yelled "YO YO!" and ran around the corner of our family suite to the refrigerator. You banged wildly on the door until I opened it and got out the yogurt... you plopped yourself down on the floor and started clapping, then signing "please" as if your life depended on it. If I stopped feeding you for a moment to wipe your face you signed "more!" and yelled "muh-muh-muh" as if I'd forgotten you were hungry.

But if you decide you're not hungry, there's no convincing you it's time to eat! You shake your head no, push the spoon or food away with a scowl, duck your head and purse your lips, and if we persist in trying, you growwwwwl "NUH!" at us with a vengeance. I keep reminding myself that all of my toddlers were stubborn, but I am starting to wonder if that little sentence I tried to overlook in the What To Expect stack might actually be true... the one that says stubbornness is a common "trait" among children with Down syndrome.

Still, I am enjoying every aspect of your toddlerhood, and this budding independence really does do a mama's heart good. Someone last week remarked at the fact that you were not nervous at all around strangers. You kept darting away from me during our donut break each morning, and more than one conversation was cut off with a blurted out, "hold on while I go grab Lily!".  I'm not sure if it's because you were clingy for so long that people expected you to remain that way, or if maybe some people just don't know that toddlers with Down syndrome are still...toddlers. But I'm proud of your independence, and yes even your stubbornness...because it shows that you have a mind of your own. 






Home Sweet Home

We had a wonderful week away, and although we returned to piles of laundry, and a nasty unexpected flu bug, it is good to be home.

I love the view from my big picture windows: the budding branches and blossoming flowers, the grazing sheep and rusty red barn, and snow capped Mary's Peak in the distance...

I love the sound of my children's voices in the morning at the kitchen table, the scratching of pencils on workbooks, the hum of the dishwasher and the strains of Pandora a quiet backdrop to it all...

I love the familiar scent of our sheets, the fragrance of our now freshly cut grass, and yes, even the smell of the rain-soaked ground...because to me it all says home.

I'm grateful and mindful of blessings big and small, and as always, dearest Lily, I am so very thankful...



....for you.



Always yours,

Mama oxox

20 comments:

Karly Jaco said...

What a beautiful post.... much to be thankful for. Thankyou for the great reminder to always be grateful and aware of the small things!

Katrina said...

So many beautiful pictures of Lily. She does look so grown up in them. Love those gold shoes and cute toes.

Katrina
Carlene's soon to be momma
www.operationorphannomore.blogspot.com

The Holt's said...

Love this post and she is absolutely beautiful!

Sarah said...

Sweet post, sweet girl, sweet Mama! The only TIME Molly is ever still is when I'm painting her toes or pretending to put on lip gloss. They learn all to early the details of being a girl, which is funny because at this time in my life I don't have much time for make up myself. i just don't see how you find time to do it all. do you ever sleep?

nicole said...

I want to hold that sleeping Lily ~ she is such a doll!

cathy said...

beautiful...
I pray you are feeling better

xoxo
cathy

Jenny said...

Loved this post, such sweet pictures of Lily. You know Russell loves the outdoors too, much more than any other child I have ever seen. No matter how grumpy he is, if I say let's go outside, just like Lily his face lights up !...Also he is the most stubborn child I have ever met, so I wonder if there is something to that whole thing! lol

Crystal said...

I completely hear you on all of your favorite things. Except I can't get my boys to stay in any size for more than a month or so it seems! Love her new outfits.

Mrs. K said...

This is the type of post I look forward to reading. And to see my little Miss Sunshine all smiles. What a fashion statement with the toes all painted and those glamorus sandals. Mom is praying for you Patti. Love you so much.

April Vernon said...

I love all of these photos! My fave is the black & white one in the section about her teeth. I always enjoy your posts. Glad that you are enjoying the small things!

Sarah said...

She looks so grown up! :)

Cindy said...

Love that little pink shirt with the ruffles... and those toes!! And that smile?! She is an absolute doll.

Jody said...

Those sandals are presh!!!! We never "heard" how Lily did after her ears were operated on.....did her hearing improve? Would love a follow up on the before and after progress. Thanks for a great post - Lily is adorable!

Anonymous said...

My heart leaps when I stop by here and see a new post. Lily is so beautiful. Thank you for sharing her and so much of your life together with us.

Jennifer said...

Lily looks so grown up! When did that happen? Hope you are doing well.

Jennifer said...

Lily looks so grown up! When did that happen? Hope you are doing well.

kirsten said...

She is so darling & I love the shoes!

cara said...

Cannot get any CUTER than this!!!!!!! Beautiful!! SO glad you posted all these pictures.

I LOVE her crinkled eye smiles!! Benji does that same grin; just melts me.

Oh Patti- I am SO sorry you all got the flu too. That is AWFUL!! I am praying for you. xoxo

Lori said...

So so sweet!! Love the hair, the toes, the shoes, the clothes....kiss that little lily for us!!!

Keri Jo said...

I've been a silent friend bcuz I've been so busy! Don't know how you do it. your house is always CLEAN in the pictures... not so with mine! anyhoo... Lily is losing her baby face and starting to look so grown up... she gets cuter with each post :) My 7 month old is just getting into 12mon. clothes, so I'm guessing he's almost as big as Lily! I do wish they stayed little lots longer! So sorry to hear about baby #14. I was SOOOO excited for you guys. You are a very special couple/family. Hope to see you again at a conf. soon.