Wednesday, January 28, 2015

Midwinter Ramblings

Look at me blogging twice in 2015!  We've been doing a lot of sprucing around our house, and I hope to post some really dramatic after pictures in the next few months.  

Once again, I'm thankful for a job that allows me flexibility to pop in and out of the daily lives of our little ones.  The other day Uncle Nate and I took Lev on a field trip to Atwoods.  We were hoping to see some baby animals, but the weather is still too cold.  Lev was begging for some of the store's display balloons and I told him no.  A kind, older gentleman overheard his plight and quickly used his pocket knife to free the balloons.  He handed them over to Lev, who had picked out the perfect hat for balloon wrangling.  We rambled around the store for half an hour with balloons in-toe.  I returned them to the decorative sign before we left, and he was just fine with leaving them.  And don't worry,  I have made a mental note to go back and get that darling hat for his birthday in March.

Ava James continues to rock elementary school.  She's happy, confident, and has precious friends.  She earned a citizenship award, and Josh and I were so happy to celebrate her at the morning assembly.  


It's so hard to believe she turned 8 this week!  Here's a quick look back at Ava over the years.  I love that she cries "happy tears, no really Mama, I'm so happy I can't help it" when she watches a movie with a sappy ending, goes from wanting to smack Levin and trade him in for another model to holding him and smothering him with kisses in four seconds flat, gave up hairbows but still lives for a sparkly, twirly skirt, and that she'll still crawl into bed with us when the thunder or her dreams are spooky.  We love her to pieces!

Levin is a boy who loves hats and directing.  Of course, we are happy to oblige him.

And keeping with the theme of babies growing up, our Levy Bear moved into his own room this month.  The transition has been seamless and I only sneak into his room and sniff the dandelion fluff on top of his head a few times each night.

Sister talked a big game about how it was high time for Lev to sleep on his own, but then she was super concerned about him falling down the stairs or being afraid if his nightlight went out.  Being a big sister is such a paradox.

I'll end with a shot of my sweets enjoying some homemade whipped cream. 

This week has been rough, and I'm so thankful for these two little bright spots, caring friends, and the most doting husband.  I had a little medical scare over the past few weeks that resulted in my first surgery ever, a few days of anxious waiting for test results, and a longer recovery than I wanted to submit to.  I was so relieved when the doctor called yesterday to let me know the results all looked normal, and I'm on my way to a full recovery.  Doing my best to rest (not my forte), keep up with work, and spend as much time with my littles as possible.  

We are looking ahead to spring days, and maybe one good blizzard before those warm days settle in for good?  We have cute snow clothes and a lovely fireplace, and we'd really like to use them!

Thursday, January 8, 2015

Auld Lang Syne

 Hello friends.  I'm going to blog in 2015 or bust!   There won't be the same lengthy, picture-laden posts of yore, but there will be memories and a few photos.  Maybe a little blogging will help assuage my blog-atrophy guilt.  My write-a-novel-or-nothing mindset wasn't working so, I'm going to revamp.

Because moments like this are few and far between:

And this building and its occupants (and prospective occupants) now pulse in my veins 24/7:

And I spend every spare moment soaking up the happy that is this:

My blog has been neglected.  But I still have a voice, and a story, and I want my kiddos to have these memories somewhere other than FB.

So, what's up with us these days? 

Levin Alexander will be two in March.  Give the boy a ball, a book, or a blueberry (or 20) and he's a happy camper.  He has opinions about everything, from what cup he'll use for each beverage to where I stand when he kicks the ball to me.  He is a snuggler, but is infamous for his kicks and throwing blocks with cannon-force.  We work on "gentle touches, especially with Ava (who he calls "sista").  We were all praising Jesus when his head-butting days subsided.  (Three of four family members were concussed by his head force.)  He has hair like dandelion fluff and absolutely perfect pitch and timing.  He loves to sing along with the new Taylor Swift album, and never misses one "Hey!" with each track.  Every minute I think he needs to stop growing, but then he morphs into an even more fun, engaging version of himself and I'm okay with the growth.


Ava James will be eight this month.  She is a passionate reader, currently tearing through a 15-chapter Baby-Sitters Club book every other night.  (BSC fans, in case you were wondering, she sees herself as a cross between Stacey and Mary Ann.)  She's a math wiz who loves PE, proving she's at least 50% Josh.  She's been playing soccer on the more competitive circuit, and it's been a serious time commitment.  She has decided to drop soccer for a while once this season is over and plans to pick up piano again, and maybe add in some dance over the summer.  Ava is a serious, silly, starry-eyed dreamer all in the same moment.  She asks why, argues her point, and keeps us all in line with kind, gentle guidance.  Josh and I love watching her grow up, and can't believe she is the same little pink bundle we held in the hospital eight years ago.

Josh is in his third year working as Assistant Attorney General for Criminal Appeals for the State of Oklahoma.  It's a great job, that allows him to be a law dork all day and still be home in time to help with dinner and play with the kiddos until bedtime.  He spends his weekends watching European soccer and playing indoor soccer.  He listens to history-themed podcasts that I don't consider entertainment, paints, plays guitar, and can actually fold a fitted sheet.  We just celebrated 10 years of marriage, so he's obviously the most patient man in the universe.

I'm the Director of Admissions at OU Law, which basically means it's my job to make sure the best and brightest law students wind up at OU Law.  I'll spend days in Excel, or coding for a new web-based project, or splicing graphics in Photoshop, then spend the next  two days hosting brilliant students and planning fun events to make them feel welcome.  I travel to recruit and spread the word about law school, and work with a team of the loveliest people on the planet.  I see my babies at lunch and make dinner every night.  Sometimes there is mommy guilt or wife guilt or work guilt or all of it at once, sometimes Lev is cutting molars and no one sleeps, sometimes Ava can't find her shin guards and people yell, sometimes I run late and drive Josh insane, sometimes Josh doesn't gush with the chatty emotion I crave, but the sun comes up and the coffee is brewing, so who can complain? 

Here's to more time together and memories shared in 2015!
(And if you're still reading this, you deserve a hug.)