Dear Young Parents,

Last week while in Disney, I was able to see parents in all stages of parenthood.  Some had little ones.  Some had, like I did, the tweens. Some had the their young adult children.  I was drawn to the parents with their young children.  I wanted to pull them aside when I could see the stress I had once experienced with my own children at that age and say….

Dear Young Parents,

ENJOY every moment.

Enjoy the tantrums because these tantrums are easily fixed.

Enjoy the cuddles because they will be far and in between as they fight to be independent.

Enjoy the kisses because before you know it, you will have to sneak them because it isn’t “cool”.

Enjoy the obsessions of dressing a certain way because dressing like a princess or a pirate every day will not last forever.  You will be lucky if they wear underwear or change their socks.

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Enjoy them wanting to be with you all the time because once they find an activity or make friends of their own, they will choose them over you.

Enjoy the talking non-stop in your ear because as they get older you will be begging for them to tell you one simple thing that happened during their day.

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Enjoy watching endless hours of their favorite Disney shows because they will soon be replaced with shows that have questionable messages.

Enjoy their sweet voices because soon they will turn hormonal and you will look at them and wonder if you gave birth to them.

Enjoy the little giggles because there is nothing more joyous than those belly laughs.  As they get older, you will fight for them to find humor in anything you do because they will think you embarrass them.

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Enjoy wanting to eat them up because believe it or not there will be days when you can’t stand being around them.  YES this will happen especially around the age of 9 1/2 – 10 1/2.

Enjoy when your kiss makes everything better because life is hard.

They are only young once and then they turn into aliens and then hopefully they turn into amazing adults because of all your hard work!  So ENJOY!!!

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Time for New Traditions

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I have to say one of the reasons I love social media is seeing pictures especially on holidays.  I love seeing what traditions others do with their families.  I LOVE traditions.  But since Ryan has died, I have to admit I have completely slacked in this area.  I think it is because the traditions we were starting are too painful for me to continue doing with my kids.

But seeing some of the fun traditions this past weekend and Ella turning 10 has made me realize that I need to start them again.  I’ve always known that I didn’t have to do the same ones.  But I think I didn’t want to rock the boat all at once.  I wanted to keep some continuity.  I love traditions and making holidays fun so I am really looking forward to trying some new things.  I just hope the kids are equally as excited.  But we all know kids so I will not be holding my breath!

It is time for me to start enjoying the holidays a little bit more and bring back the fun.  Of course I still cry and miss Ryan terribly.  But I want to continue my promise to myself that my kids would grow up with a lot of great and meaningful memories.  So it’s time for some new traditions!


That Magical Feeling


My first time visiting Disney World happened 35 years ago this week.  It was my 6th birthday and my mom was 7 months pregnant with my brother.  I had been begging to go to Disney. I remember this moment as clear as day…

It was time for me to open my presents.  My parents and grandparents were there.  My parents took me to their bedroom and on their bed was a denim color suitcase.  They told me to open it up.  I opened it up and it was filled with new clothes!  On top of the clothes was an envelope.  My mom told me to open it up.  So I open up the envelope and there were 3 plane tickets and what I remember a note saying I was going to Disney.  I remember jumping up and down with excitement and saying “We are going to Disney!” over and over again!  Then I was told I was going but not with my parents.  I was going with my grandparents.  I remember crying because I had never went away without my parents before but looking back, there was really no way they would have been able to go.

I can remember the plane ride.  I remember getting wings from the pilot.  I remember having to do homework because I was missing school.  I remember drinking Tang every morning in the hotel room.  The one thing that I remember, and to this very day makes me smile, is seeing Cinderella’s Castle on Main Street in Magic Kingdom.  I will never forget the feeling I got at age 6.  It is the same feeling I get even now.  It is the same feeling I got when each of my children saw it for the first time.  In just a few short days I will be seeing the castle and I know it will take me right back to being 6 again.

For me, Magic Kingdom is the most magical place on earth.  I love the feeling I get as soon as I walk onto Main Street….it’s magical. I love that all my worries disappear….that is truly magical!  I love that I am living in the moment and enjoying myself no matter what is going on in my life….magical.  I love that I am getting to spend a few days alone with my oldest daughter in the most magical place on earth….simply magical.

The Last of So Many Firsts

My baby girl lost her 1st tooth!  She couldn’t have handled it any better for the very 1st time.  No tears over the tiny amount of blood. No fear over it during the short process.  Me, on the other hand, had tears running down my cheeks.  It got to the point that I went up to my room and cried.  It reminded me that all of Gracie’s “firsts” are now my “lasts” as a mom.  I read a similar article on this a few months ago and it really didn’t get me thinking about it until the loss of her tooth.


When you become a parent, you look forward to all the “firsts” and celebrate with your child.  You are beaming and feeling such happiness.  I was like this will all of my children’s “firsts”…1st steps, 1st time holding their bottles, 1st time going to the potty, 1st day of preschool, etc.  I always knew that all of Gracie’s “firsts” I would never experience again.  But it didn’t sink in until this moment. I will no longer experience the feeling of seeing  my child experience certain milestones for the very first time again.  I have already experienced the last of so many firsts…

First time rolling over

First steps

Sitting up

First word

Saying “mama”

Holding the bottle

First haircut

First laugh

First smile

First Day of Preschool

Riding a bike

Seeing Santa for the first time

First Birthday

First time on the potty

Losing your first tooth

This last of a major “first” has reminded me that I need to stop and relish in the moments that are yet to come for all 3 of my children.  No matter how many times my children have promised me that they will stay 5 forever, reality is they don’t.  My 1st baby will be 10 in a few weeks.  You know I will relish that moment because it is the last time for her to be that age  ever again.  It will remind me that I will be blessed to celebrate two more 10th birthdays and still have so many more “firsts” to experience.  But, hopefully, I will remember that once they happen, they will never happen again.



Warp Speed

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Do you remember as a kid how slow time seemed to go?  I remember school seemed like it was 10x’s as many months, summer lasted what seemed like a long time, and just driving to the mall seemed like you needed a whole day for there and back.  What happened?  I feel like I live at warp speed any more!

The weeks are flying by and by this time next week we will be into April.  How did that happen?  Ella informed me that she only has 10 Tuesdays left until the end of the school year.  That is insane to me!  In a less than 2 weeks I will turn 41…I swear I just turned 40! Then my very first baby will be 10 years old….I have been a mom for 10 years!!!

There are so many moments I would love to hit the pause button on life…my kids getting older, a day where I have so much to do, to be two places at once, etc.

But then there are the moments I am anticipating I will want a fast forward button…the tween years, seeing your children struggle and having to let them figure it out on their own, anything that causes us to be out of control of the outcomes, etc.

I can’t even start to list the rewind button moments…too many.

But life is constant.  Time keeps going forward and we have to as well.  We have to take the good with the bad.  We have to savor every moment.

A Moment…

Something happened last night that I felt I had been lacking for so long…a moment of pure family fun!  I need to stress it was a moment but I will take it.  I feel like with our busy schedules these little moments have been far and few.  So what was our moment….a family dance/sing-a-long to my favorite (insert sarcasm) movie Teen Beach Movie.

I can’t tell you how much this moment made my entire month!  It was so nice to have all 4 of us laughing and just being silly together. No one said “don’t touch me” or “it’s my turn”.  THIS is a rare occasion!