Summer of Fun 2013: Have a Tie-Dye Day

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One of the fun, simple things on our Summer of Fun 2013 was to have a tie-dye day.  It is a little tradition that we have.  I like for the littles to have semi-matching, bright shirts when we go on little trips.

So, last Monday, we sat aside some time to tie-dye our shirts.  I let them choose their patterns and their colors.

Summer chose and went first.  She wanted the swirl pattern, and she wanted to use every color.  She patiently waited while I swirled the shirt, and then she started to work on her creation.  Her shirt turned out bright, colorful, and beautiful, just like my sweet sunshine girl.

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Gabriel went next.  He wanted his to be a burst of colors, and he wanted it to look like a sunburst.  We are both somewhat visual learners, so we had to look at the pattern, back at the shirt, and back at the pattern to determine which colors needed to go where.  I was very happy that he still enjoyed the process of creating his own shirt.  I always hear, “Oh, he will not want to do that much longer.”  I choose to not listen to the negative naysayers.  My parenting theory is that if we continue to make it a fun, family experience, then they will all continue to enjoy it.

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Ethan went last because the shirt that he chose was a graduated colors of green.  I needed to make sure that everyone else had used the green so that I could re-fill it to use the strong solution and then slowly weaken the color.  As I watched him, I was so proud of him.  We have been tie-dying shirts for several years, and it is just one of the things that I never knew if he would want to do or be able to do by himself.  Of course he could do it by himself.  He rocked the tie-dying.

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It was a fun morning.  While one was tie-dying, the other two were enjoying the morning, riding bikes and scooters in the drive-way.  There was such a feeling of utter, complete contentment about the whole experience.  As with all of our summer fun days, I cherish and enjoy the little moments just as much as I do the big ones.

My Three Pumpkins

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We completed one of my favorite October traditions yesterday.

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I think that there has only been one year that we have not done this in the 10 years that I have been a momma.

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It is something that is over in the blink of an eye, but those memories stay imprinted in my video in my brain for years.

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We went to the Pumpkin Patch.

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Nonna made us all t-shirts, the same color but with different designs.  We wore them to school yesterday, knowing that we had our special date planned for as soon as school was out for the day.

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I was so happy that my littles were just as excited about it yesterday as they have been for the past several years.  Actually, I think that they were more excited.  I am not sure if it is because they really enjoy it that much, or, if it is because they know that I do.  Either way, it makes me happy.  I am glad that they know that traditions are important, fun, and exciting. Traditions and love, those are two of the building blocks of family.

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This was the first time that I have made this trip after a long day at work.  There are some things that I am proving to myself can still happen, even though our lives have changed a bit now that all three littles are in school, and I am working almost full time.  The one thing that will always remain the same, no matter what, is that family is always, always first.  So, even though I was a little more tired yesterday, it was still a perfect day for a trip to the pumpkin patch.  As our lives change, we adjust.  We tweak things here and there and determine a new “normal”.  What matters to my littles…and probably to all children…is that they know that the heart of our family is the same no matter the season of life or chapter of our book.  Yesterday, our hearts were in that pumpkin patch, exactly as they have been every other year that we have gone.  This season of our life is beautiful…beauty, after all, is in the eyes of the beholder.  And, we looked around that pumpkin patch yesterday and saw beauty all around us – in our eyes, in the pumpkins, in our hearts, and, especially, in our family.

 

Just Stopping By

I have been gone for a week.  It is hard when I leave this little blank canvas for that long because I miss it oh-so-much.  However, please know that all is well in our lives.  We are just so busy.

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Last week was kind of a blur, the kind that kept me chanting, “We can do this.  We can do this. We can do this.”  Not in a bad way, though.  It was in that mom warrior kind of way, where I felt determined to prove that I could cook, clean, teach, mother, etc. and still be standing at the end of the week for pizza and movie night.  I learned that I am capable of doing it all but that asking for help is okay, too.  And, the important thing is that I was still standing for pizza night…even though my position for movie night was comfortably lounging on the couch, feeling very peaceful that our tradition has continued after all these years.

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The weekend itself held three birthday parties, a soccer game, three volleyball games, a roller coaster football game, and plenty of time to visit with my own mother.  While I cannot say that I would want that much jammed into every Saturday, for this particular Saturday, it was just as it should be – fun and exciting while also cozy and comfortable.

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We are definitely at a new stage in our lives, one where I look up and it went from Tuesday to Friday in the blink of an eye and I ask myself, “Did I take a picture all week?”  But, for all of the times that I wonder how we can continue at this pace, I have the peaceful calm, knowing that October is always busy but then there is November where we settle into shorter days, longer nights, fires in the fireplace (when we are lucky enough to have those colder days), cozy meals, football, and even more family time.

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I am learning more about balance than I knew was even possible.  And, even though I have been told that I will never find it, that does not mean that I will quit trying.  I believe that balance looks different for every person, for every family.  Right now, for our family, we will embrace the busy days, knowing that it is a huge blessing that I get to go to work with all three of my littles almost every single day.  And, we will count down the days until November, Thanksgiving, and Christmas, as we excitedly plan a fall and winter that will most definitely look different than it has in the past.  However, different is good, different is better, and different will be as absolutely perfect as we are determined to make it.