Reflections of a Mom's Life

Thursday, April 30, 2009


"Somehow, I feel more successful when my kids are dirty... like they're doing what they're supposed to do."
by Natalie Renstrom

I couldn't agree more!!!

i love a good laugh

i just read the cutest post on my friend Natalie's blog about her daughter Greta. Greta has mastered the art of taking off her clothes and gave her mommy a good laugh the other day.

i laughed out loud when i read it and was immediately reminded of my neighbor's daughter Taylor.

Taylor just turned 3 in march and has also mastered the whole taking off her clothes bit. you never know when she'll strike. it's not just one piece of clothing either, she takes EVERYTHING off. hilarious.

the other day Kristine and i were outside trying to figure out where she should plant her forsythia's that she had just bought. i turn around and there is Taylor, TOTALLY NUDE, sitting on top of one of those green electrical boxes in her yard. Kristine could have died and ran to take care of the problem.

the next day, we're all outside playing and i see something out of the corner of my eye, glance to the right and there goes Taylor running down the driveway...TOTALLY NUDE!!!! hysterical! i'm sure not so much to Kristine but i can't help but laugh my head off.

you NEVER know when Taylor will strike. i think that's part of the humor in it. aren't kids just the funniest little things! i love 'em!

gotta go with your gut

one thing i've learned over the past 7 years of being a mom is that your gut plays a BIG role in knowing what to do with your children. especially when it comes to sickness. call it mother's intuition if you will, you just KNOW when something is not right.

she looks happy, right? playing, laughing, content, curious, all day long...

so what's the problem you might ask?

she has an ear infection. a first for her...we've been blessed!

ear infections are the funniest things. so unpredictable and different for EVERY child it seems. when Harrison has had an ear infection he runs a high fever and is completely out of commission. Jackson may run a low grade fever but usually no fever at all. he'll be a little more prone to take a nap or may want to sit around more...that's usually the best indicator that something is wrong. he's not a sitter.

they all seem to have a fairly high tolerance of pain. they never tug at or complain about their ears. it's never been like the "books" say it will be. is anything ever like the "books" say it will be??? :)

Addison may be a lot like Jackson. she's run a low grade fever off and on for 4 days, has a runny nose and some coughing. normal cold stuff but nothing big and nothing i've worried too much about.

here's where the GUT plays a big part. even though she was as friendly as EVER while we ran our errands yesterday smiling and talking to every person in sight, didn't even cry when i dropped her off at nursery last night before choir, played ball with the ladies in the nursery and crawled around all over the place, slept through the night and to any bystander would seem just fine...except for the dealing with a common cold part......

something just didn't seem quite right. and the low grade fever had gone on for too many days in my opinion. so we made our appointment this morning and low and behold she has an ear infection in her right ear. we got the drugs and i'm confident she'll be 100% in no time.

what holds us mom's back from going with our gut? i think it's the fear and frustration of getting everyone ready and over to the Dr.'s office only to hear...AGAIN..."no, mom, it's JUST a virus." i've heard that a few times and it is always annoying to go all the way over there just to hear that it's a virus and they can do NOTHING to help your little one. however, i've also been on the other end and NOT gone because i didn't want to waste my co-pay and hear the whole virus talk, blah, blah, blah...only to end up at the Dr. a few days later to hear..."OH MY WORD, look at this poor little thing, they have _____________________ (something that's a big strep throat that Harrison had this year and wasn't even complaining of a sore throat)! i can't believe you haven't been in here sooner!"

wow, that'll really boost your confidence concerning your mothering skills. way to make me feel like a total loser mom!

i've learned to go with my GUT. when i do, i usually get it right. sometimes it's a virus but i'm OK with that. soemtimes you just need the peace of mind to KNOW everything is OK. and that's what insurance is for right? peace of mind!

OH, OH, OH, i almost forgot! because we HAD to go to the Dr. we got to see how much little miss Addison weighs! she's grown quite a bit since her 9 month appointment.

9 month - 14.5
11 month - 16.3 WOO HOO!!!

Wednesday, April 29, 2009

my little J is coming home

Jackson has been in Flor-dee-ya and is coming home tomorrow morning. i can't wait to see him. it's been a nice break but i've really missed him today. i want my boy to come home!

Two cute things he said today...

Mimi: "do you want ketchup?" (he loves ketchup by the way...could eat it with a spoon)
Jackson: "no, me not like ketchup"
Mimi: "i thought you loved ketchup"
Jackson: Heh-son (Harrison) not like ketchup and me not like anything Heh-son not like."


and then on the phone tonight before bed...

me: "i love you Jackson"
Jackson: "me love you most"
me: "no, i love you the most"
Jackson: "no, me love you ALL DAY LONG"

talk about melting my heart!!! i love that little Jackson of mine so much and i can't WAIT to see him tomorrow!!!

Monday, April 27, 2009

a year and a half is too long...

April 7-10th Addison and I were able to visit with Vonda, Ella Rose, and Carolina Grace. What a wonderful reunion we had! It's been a year and a half since we've seen Ian, Vonda, and Ella Rose. It has been TOO LONG!!

Now that they are back in the States I begged Anthony to let me go and visit. It didn't take much begging...he knew how much it meant to me to get to squeeze those little girls. I hadn't even met Carolina Grace yet! I'm so thankful that Anthony knew how important that was to me and was willing to make it happen. He's so good to me!

Vonda and Addison meeting for the very first time!

Can you tell I couldn't wait to get my hands on this sweet girl!

look at these precious cousins! it thrilled my heart to see them all together for the first time!

Addison and I flew out on Tuesday and flew back on Friday. I wish it could have been longer! We had such a great time just playing and enjoying the girls. Ella Rose melted my heart with her love for "Aunt Bethy". Oh she was SO sweet! I loved how much she wanted to be with me and how excited she was that I was there. Talk about making my day! She made my month! :) Carolina Grace is a sweet heart and those blue eyes and gorgeous smile just melted my heart! Oh how I love those girls! I can hardly wait until August when we will see them again. Our timeshare vacation to Hilton Head, SC is going to be SO MUCH FUN! I can't wait for the boys to see their little cousins. They are going to love spending time with those precious girls!

I'm sort of glad I was able to go out there with just Addison. I'm sure if Harrison and Jackson had been with me little Ella Rose wouldn't have had all that much to do with her "Aunt Bethy". She would have just wanted to play with those boys, and who could blame her? I'm glad I got some good one on one with my precious nieces and SO glad Addison could play with them. We both had a ball! I also loved catching up with Vonda and spending some precious time together talking about everything under the sun. Vonda is not just like a sister, she IS my sister and I'm so glad that God has allowed us to be family! I love her dearly. She is always such an encouragement to me!

Here are more pictures that I know you probably care to see but I just couldn't narrow it down! Try to enjoy them just for me! :)

the house they are renting has a park directly across the street. the girls all love to swing!

Ella Rose swinging with "Aunt Bethy". She was such a good sport letting the little girls sit in the swings while she sat in my lap. Of course I loved every minute of it! :)

the next morning we went on a walk/run first after my half marathon and knee injury so it was GREAT to get out there again. they have a double and single jogger so we were able to take all the girls and it was so much fun!

bath time was fun for the girls!

Addison showing off her flexibility. :)

just hanging out in the girls room before bed!

Ella Rose LOVES people and she loved on Addison. Addison felt right at home as she is very much used to lots of love and attention from her brothers! :) at one point Ella Rose was pulling Addison around the living room floor by her arms. HILARIOUS!!! I stopped it of course but it was quite funny. Seriously, Addison is SO tough! She has to be with those brothers!

a quick photo shoot before we head to the mall

going down hill....

OK, they're completely DONE!

doesn't she have the cutest personality! you can totally tell in this picture. she is a doll and i just love her to death!

look at this sweet girl! she always has the most beautiful smile on her face and is the most contented baby! i could just eat her up!

look at those blue eyes!

i just love this little girl!

playing outside

the girls are taking off...

love, love, LOVE this girl!

hanging out in the airport before our flight back to Raleigh...

we miss you Ian, Vonda, Ella Rose, & Carolina Grace! please come visit us in Raleigh soon...

counting down the days to Hilton Head 09! :)

Sunday, April 26, 2009

our first girls trip

Addison and I took our first GIRLS ONLY trip together a few weeks ago to San Antonio, TX. We went to visit Vonda, Ella Rose, & Carolina Grace (and Ian too but we were really going out there to visit with the girls). :)

Here are a few pix of our flight out. She did great. It was a long flight and she's not much for being held. She would rather get down, crawl around, and do her own thing. We managed though and I have very fond memories of traveling with my little girl. I hope we'll have many more little trips just the two of us! The boys will have their camping, sports trips or golf weekends and Addison and I will have shopping and spa getaways! Can you tell I'm planning ahead???

isn't she sweet???

"can you believe that i get to play in my own seat! Mommy says she loves empty planes!"

"this is fun mommy!"

"i'm loving all this attention Mom! i don't have to compete with my brothers!"

me and my girl!

Saturday, April 25, 2009

the first Williams yard sale

Our neighborhood had a community yard sale today that we participated in. It is actually our FIRST and only yard sale we have done as a married couple. It wasn't bad...I wish we would have sold more. A lot of things I thought WOULD go, didn't. I'm going to try and Craig's list a few things this week. I'm $133.65 richer than I was when I woke up this morning. :) We set up with another family right beside us and three of the 4 of the homes in front of us were participating as well. I think it helped get us the most traffic. The interesting news was that I had set my alarm for what I thought to be 6AM but was woken up by Harrison at 7AM. Guessing the alarm was set for PM. BUMMER!!! Woke up panicking because the yard sale STARTED at 7AM. Anthony and I were running outside in the clothes we slept in trying to get our stuff to the street to meet the masses....that didn't arrive for another 30 min. :) Made for a fun start to the day!

Harrison and Jackson had a bake sale. Andrea made muffins for them to sell and I made cookies. They were a hoot! It helped them feel like they were a part and boy did they show off their selling skills. Their daddy was proud! :) They made $7.00!

Addison just hung out and enjoyed herself until she headed back inside for a nap. Perfect little Angel! :)

Thursday, April 23, 2009

a new day

a better morning.
so thankful for a new day to start over.
some prayer with Harrison before school.
thankful for his tender heart.
thankful for a NEW DAY!

Wednesday, April 22, 2009

cried a river

just cried a river over my oldest little man. i am so at a loss. God has got to give me wisdom. i know He can and will but i need it so bad and RIGHT NOW. i don't know what to do and i don't even think anyone could tell me what to do. i really feel like the Lord is going to have to work this out.

he is so tired. he is hating school. he has only been back 2 days. he is crying through every minute of his homework and ending up angry through the process. the amount is overwhelming him and i'm already dreading it before he gets home from school. i can't seem to make it fun for him. he's just dead set against wanting to do it. period. he's being disrespectful like i've never seen before. he's never been an angry child. i'm almost in shock to see it.

i am so discouraged. i love this little guy so much. he's 7 years old for goodness sake and i feel like we are dealing with some big stuff here.

please pray for him.

please pray for me and Anthony to know how to handle all of this and come out of it stronger and more loving than we believe we can be.

he went to bed angry and it breaks my heart. i'm begging God to give me wisdom in how to reach our little man without making him more angry. i'm praying i can show him love and that he will FEEL loved. i just want to wrap my arms around him. i'm very heavy hearted tonight.

a lot going on

haven't been blogging much as you can see. :) trying to read YOUR blogs and get caught up on comments. i haven't really been able to put my finger on why i haven't blogged. of course i don't really have time but that hasn't stopped me before. :) but i have started to think a lot about it the last couple of days.

i have a lot going on. around me and inside me.

Harrison was tracked out of school for 3 weeks and there was a lot going on with that. he and I both took trips and things were pretty busy. my sister Janet brought her kids to visit and that was long overdue! we had such a WONDERFUL time together. we were so blessed to have them here. i have pictures galore to post. and i will. Jackson's Birthday was Sunday. he's 4 NOW!!! pictures to post of that too.

we have a CRAZY week this week. lots of getting together with people, which i love, but trying to keep it all together. Harrison has a TON of homework and a project. i'm feeling guilty that we have so much going on because i don't want him to suffer for it. we have a neighborhood yard sale saturday so i'm working to get things in order for that. i'm a little cranky 'cause i haven't been able to run this week like i normally would do. i think i'm gonna have to sign up for another training program and another race. i'm feeling like a fish out of water.

the inside stuff on top of all that needs to be done is pushing me over the edge. some tough things i'm praying about and working on with Harrison. i know they won't be better overnight and that's hard to accept. some big family changes happening in the next few months that are keeping me on pins and needles and constantly before the Lord asking for his wisdom and peace. feeling lonely. i've struggled with this off and on since Harrison was born. i have loads of people around me, loving me, supporting me, praying for me and still i feel alone. how is that? i don't know. i wish i could understand it. i just know that the Lord is drawing me to Him right now and i'm trying to stay at His feet. i spent precious time with the ladies of my Lambs group last night. our leader, Karen, has been so precious to us. last night she told us all how we had led the group and she said that gentleness came to mind when she thought of me and what a wonderful mother she knew i must be to my children because of my gentle spirit. WOW. i totally cried. i don't feel gentle. i don't feel like a good mother 50% of the time. i don't think my children probably see me as gentle. i try. i long to be gentle with them and there was a time i was better at being gentle. i felt like the Lord used her last night to speak to me. i know i'm so hard on myself and struggling a bit with that right now and He blessed me last night with those sweet ladies. i've learned so much from them and i'm sure they don't even know the impact they've had on my life while i've been able to just "watch" them and their walks with the Lord. i know the Lord is working on me right now. i know what areas He's tyring to change. i want to change. i'm feeling very vulnerable right now.

i think this is why i've been hesitant to blog. a lot going on in so many ways. but, the whole reason i started this blog is to journal my everyday stuff. my fun pictures, my kid's activities, the fun stuff we do as a family...AND the everyday, hard, mundane, normal life stuff too. i want to be real and honest about what life is like for me at each stage and how God is working in my life...even when it's hard to articulate. gonna have to get back to it. i know it will be good for me and i want all of this in the "book" when i finally get working on those blog books that i have been planning to make for 2 years.

Jackson leaves for FL on Sunday for his birthday trip with Mimi and Papa. gonna start on that blog book...i've got two to complete and it's gonna take a while. :)

Thursday, April 2, 2009

you think he's excited???

Harrison leaves for his annual birthday trip to "Flor-dee-ya" (I know he's 7 now but I'm NOT correcting day I will miss it!!! and Jackson says it too now and it makes me very happy...OK back to my post) on April 10th, NEXT Friday. He tracked out of school this past Friday, March 26th and came straight home from school to pack. His suitcase has been sitting next to the door or in the living room ready to go ever since. :)

I LOVE IT!!! He is such a planner by nature but I LOVE how excited he is to go. He can hardly wait! He loves his Mimi and Papa so much and he LOVES the Villages where they live. I do too. Non stop fun. seriously. Yes, it's a retirement community but I wish I could live there. :) I know he's gonna have so much fun and I'm looking forward to hearing all about it. He won't miss us. He never does. His bond with Mimi started very early on and he would pick her most days over me. I don't let it bother me. :) I know he loves me too.

I had a very similar bond with my Nanny. I wanted to live with her. I wanted to spend the night every week. I wanted to go to work with her. I soaked up being with my Nanny any minute I could. Most importantly, she wanted me. I always felt loved and never in the way. I would call her in secret and ask her to call to see if I could come spend the're not supposed to invite yourself! :) and she would. She'd wait a couple of minutes and call back to ask my Mom. My mom knew what I was up to I'm sure! :) I don't ever remember a time that Nanny said NO. I don't ever remember a time she was too busy to have me hang around with her or tag along.

I love that Harrison loves his Mimi and Papa. Jackson does too. He's excited about his trip too. :) How thankful we are for grandparents who love these precious kids and who LOVE spending time with them!

OH YEAH.....and I'M EXCITED TOO! I don't have my bag packed yet but very soon! Mimi and Papa arrive on Monday and Addison and I leave for San Antonio on Tuesday. While they watch the boys, Addison and I will be visiting with Ian, Vonda, Ella Rose, and Carolina Grace until Friday. I can hardly wait! I've never gotten to meet my sweet niece Carolina Grace and she is 9 1/2 mo. old and I haven't seen Ella Rose since she was 6 mo. old. It's been over a year and a half since I've seen Vonda, Ella Rose, and Ian!!! WAY TOO LONG!!!

So, as you can imagine, we are going to have the time of our lives when we see each other and get to play with all these little girls! I can't wait!

We ALL can't wait...these next two weeks are sure going to be fun!!!!
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