Saturday, September 28, 2013

My Girl

How is it possible that I have a five-year-old daughter? It's true. Tonight at 12:33 marks the 5th birthday of my firstborn. I am amazed that I could love someone this much. But I am not perfect, and I make mistakes. So here is my flawed letter to my beautiful girl:

Dearest Emerson,

Tomorrow morning, you will be five years old. Mommy remembers everything about the day you were born - how excited and nervous I was, how tired and hopeful and crazy and scared and happy. How I wanted so much to see your little face, and how you turned out to look so different than I imagined, and how perfect and beautiful you were from the very first moments you were here. I will always love you with everything that I am,and I will always be here to support you and your dreams with love and strength and a listening ear.

Age 4 brought a lot of changes for you.You got a new brother just about two months before your birthday last year, and it was a positive adjustment. You went to New York, Canada and Martha's Vineyard. You had your third dance recital, you went to Pre-K at Saint Joseph's in Wakefield and started Kindergarten at Saint Patrick's in Stoneham. You finished your time at Miss Eileen's. You were a flower girl in my cousin's wedding and you stole the show. You always, always, steal everyone's hearts, especially your Nanny. You said goodbye to your babysitter Jesse as she left for camp and then college, and you sent her letters to both places. When I leave for work in the morning, you run to the window to wave or open the door and yell, "I love you! I love you so much!"and some mornings I hide the tears so you can't see them. You had a birthday party at our house with a 'princess bouncy house," just like you wanted. 

Some days, Mommy is a great Mommy and makes you smile and laugh. Some days I am not. When you are old enough to read this, really read this, I will tell you about the days you made me crazy. About the days when I told you to get dressed for the twelfth time so we wouldn't be late. About the days when you wanted to hide under your covers and I had to dress you there. About the times when I got frustrated and yelled at you, and always ultimately made myself feel worse for upsetting you, but didn't know how to handle the situation better. About the times I had to referee you and your one-year-old brother. About the time I wrote a note to your teacher at school, telling her you had a little cold and packing you some nice little tissues, and you took it out of your folder and stuffed it into your backpack so she wouldn't see it. (You came clean later, but it was gutsy. You told me you "didn't want to be different" and I respect it. But wow.) About the weird dynamic that evolves between your Nanny, you and me when we are together, and how your Nanny feels I'm too hard on you, so she overcompensates by spoiling you, which makes me mad. About how sorry I am that I'm not as patient as I could be, and how I will strive to be the best Mommy I can be.

The world is here for you, and I want to give it to you with both of my hands. Tonight you told me I was "the best Mommy in the world" and I hope you always feel this way. I hope you always feel the love I have for you, and as we grow, we will grow together.

All my heart,

Wednesday, September 25, 2013


My little, beautiful boy took his first steps today!!!!!

It started out like any ordinary day - hectic and stressful. To be honest, the nighttime routine is anything but relaxing, the sleeping hours and restless, and the morning chaos is unnerving. After a few weeks of this with some busy weekends in between, I have been TAXED.

And then, out of the blue, my little son stood at the couch, reached for me, and took three beautiful baby steps into my arms.

And suddenly, the world was a beautiful place to be.

Tuesday, September 24, 2013

Any day now

What a month - so much is happening. I can't even.

Okay, so here's a bulleted list:
  • Em is in kindergarten and has more little things to do than I can handle. In addition to becoming a mom who packs lunch and snack every day, I now wash uniforms, lay out uniforms (down to the socks and undies, plus coordinating hair bows and headbands), check and empty school folders, put all over the completed papers into a nice binder, and generally attempt to manage the tornado of little assignments ("Bring a family photo! Bring three apples! What is the date of your Baptism?  Bring a photo of your Christening Day!") not to mention the barrage of invitations for birthday parties for children whose names I do not yet know and parents I have not yet met. It's EX.HAUS.TING.
  • John is moving and grooving. In addition to his tiny little bottom teeth that started showing just before he turned one, he now has two top teeth that are poking out and looking exactly like his sister's. It's so cute I can't even describe it. He's cruising around the house and getting into everything: the cabinets under the sink, the (formerly) neatly folded t-shirt stacks in his sister's bottom drawer, my trash can. He is harder to nurse now, but I am incredibly proud of myself and of him for sticking with it so long. He is purely lovely and mischievous and I want to squeeze him all day.
Some days, life is heaven. Other days, it's another story. But seeing them look up at me makes think of a sweet moment I shared with my mom. I had asked her when she felt like a grown up, when she truly felt like she'd arrived on the doorstep of adulthood. I expected her to say something like, "When you graduated from college," or "When you got married" - but her response was something I had never expected.

"Any day now," she said, and smiled.


Saturday, September 21, 2013

Monday, September 2, 2013

Back to Cool

Oh, happy day! My classroom is a light, beautiful, baby blue! Sigh...

Let me back up. I have been teaching at APS for twenty years, and the color scheme has always been a variation of green; that is, mint green subway-tiled walls in the hallways, and classrooms with various shades of beige. Despite my love for all things Bobbi Brown, that vanilla/beige color on walls does little for the complexion or the spirit. So I sent an email to my facilities coordinator to see if I could use this light blue paint my husband and used for our bedroom

My facilities coordinator came up with an even better idea: they had some light blue paint left over from the nurse's office, and they she'd have the summer kids paint for me! So exciting!

Honestly, it is so refreshing and light - I love it! Sometimes it's the littlest things =)