i've wondered since i began this blog how i would mark another year of kennedy and blakely's lives. it's hard to sum up 4 years of life when you combine all of the memories with the crazy and indescribable way you love your kids. plus, i didn't have this blog the past 3 years, so i've never captured the previous years. in a nutshell, this post is loooooooong. it's especially hard pregnant because i pretty much cry over anything anyway these days; putting words to my love for k and b might flood the house. of course these are things they obviously can't read yet, but will hopefully appreciate one day:
four years of k and b in pictures...
first time i saw you girls (or atleast remember seeing you):
kissing each other goodbye in the hospital when it was time for kennedy to go home without blakely:
finally together at home:
how the first few months were spent:
this was our first family photo shoot (and last for 3 years) and the day we realized you would probably never like the camera. do you like how me and daddy posed and left you two on the ground to hang out? who does that? yall look fake. see, you weren't the only ones who had a lot of growing to do...
one year (and a hilarious depiction of your personalities then):
and now (most random picture ever. you look like caged animals but for some reason i can't find any recent ones of you together):
-spell and write your name and spell nicole and brett.
-write all of your letters but write most of your numbers backwards.
-love dressing up. if we're home, you've got on a princess dress.
-live half of your lives as though you're in the sound of music. i have to be maria more than mommy, and i definitely have a 3rd child named "fregrent".
-love fashion and approve of or critique my outfit every day.
-love to read with me.
-love family time. any time the 4 of us are together and having fun, one of you will look up beaming and say "we're having a family".
-never want to be apart from each other, and never stop talking to each other. never.
you both still:
-say "mama hold you" sometimes. it's the one gramatically incorrect thing i'll never ever be able to correct. nothing melts me more than the innocence of that phrase.
-let me have the whole hair cut budget to myself. and get really sad that your hair is not long like all of the other little girls. good things come to those who wait ;)
-won't wear bows in your hair.
-love and look out for each other more than i've ever seen in 2 siblings.
-love to eat and love to know what you're eating is healthy (your favorite nutrient is "fiver"...mama's girls).
-have to have your blanket to go to sleep and suck on the corners to comfort yourself. you turn the blanket around and around until you've wet all the corners, then go to sleep.
i still can't believe i've only known you 4 years, when now i can't really remember my life without you. here you are at 2 days old. it had been a rough and scary pregnancy, so i was beyond relieved to have you here and healthy (though small and premature):
you stayed at northside for 2 weeks until you were strong enough for us to bring you home. here you are wondering where your womb-mate is:
you cried alot the first 7 months of your life, but after that, were pretty content and easy-going. here you are at one:
you love reading, dressing up, blakely, and being with people. you always want to know what we're going to do and who we're going to see. you can pitch a fit with the best of them, but when i give you a look that says "really?", you start laughing. you can't stay mad for long. you have the sweetest heart i've ever seen on a kid. you are a people-pleaser by nature, and so obedient. when you see someone hurt, you cry with them and long to protect those you love. i can't not smile when i see your big smile, missing tooth, and deep dimples. it lights up your whole face and your beautiful blue eyes. i feel like you'll always be pretty grounded, but i pray that you'll always know it's not your good performance that makes us love you. i'm sure we'll go through rough times like we already have, but no matter what, i will always be more proud than i can tell you to be your mom. i love you forever and always; so much more than i can begin to tell you with my words.
when i met you 4 years ago, you were the tiniest baby i had ever seen. you needed special care, and a month in NICU to grow strong enough to come home. i know we talk a lot about your strong will and fighter mentality, but i'm pretty sure god used that to keep you alive in the womb and out.
i still cry everytime i see this picture and remember how scared i was that you would never live a normal life. when i was pregnant with you, the doctors told me you girls would possibly die or have cerebral palsy. i forget about those long, scary days all too often and take for granted that you are not only "normal", but one of the sharper 4 year olds i know.
this is when you were finally big enough to come home, but still hooked up to your heart rate monitor...aren't you huge?!
this pretty much sums up what most pictures your first 6 months look like. i think we were too tired to put clothes on you.
you had a rough start. you had surgery when you were 3 months old to remove a hemangioma that was infected from irritation from your heart rate monitor strap. no wonder you cried all the time.
we made it through a year...
and now we're here...
you still wear "hair" on your head, resist help because you like to do everything yourself, color in the lines perfectly, and are really, really funny. you're the leader of the pack with your sister and your friends. you put up a tough shell, but have the most tender little heart when you're broken. your heart is most revealed when it comes to kennedy. you'd do anything for her, and long for her happiness almost as much as your own, which is pretty rare at this age. i think you'll probably rebel as a teenager, but take really good care of me when i'm old.
blakely, i know we battle it out a lot. i know we drive you crazy somedays trying to teach you obedience, patience, manners, respect, and to one day know and fear our lord. some days i want to pull my hair out. but there's no one in this world who has ever existed or ever will that i would trade you for. because ultimately, though necessary to function in society and convenient for me as a mom, i don't want your obedience, patience, and respect. i want you and everything that goes along with you. i love you no matter how messy it gets sometimes. thank you for teaching me that you're really what i look like too, and how my heavenly father loves me in the same way, only in an infinitely more perfect way. i thought it necessary to perform and you've shown me how far love goes beyond that. i love you with everything in me, and it grows deeper each day.
happy birthday to my sweet little angels! i'm so proud of the little girls you're growing into.