Dear Tessa…

Dear Tessa,

I know.  Where have I been? We last left off with me trying to desperately save our beloved cat Jack that we had for a mere two days.  Then I left you to sit with that cliffhanger for a really long time; which was pretty uncool of me.

Here is how it went down for Jack…

I went out to check on him at 5:30 the morning after I–ok fine, Dad–had given him his vaccine.  And let me tell you, Jack looked terrible.  It was clear that he was not going to make it so I left him there to pass. After I got you on the bus at 7:15 a.m., I went to put Kendal in the car.  I decided to check on Jack one more time.  He was gone.  I picked him up to move him to a proper resting place, but was horrified to find that upon picking him up, full rigor mortis had set in–like straight through his tail.  I can’t un-feel that.  There is nothing pleasant about that.  I had a stiff cat in my arms (*shutters*) that I was trying to shield from our resident cat-loving three year old.  A dead cat is dramatic enough for me without Kendal’s knowledge of it.  So back into the box he went until Dad could come home and help me out later that day.

I admit it…we straight up lied to you about Jack’s whereabouts after that. We told you that he went to cat therapy at the vet so that he could get better; hoping that one day you guys would just forget about him. Cat-freaking-therapy. It worked for a while.  But your sister, with her exceptional memory, brought Jack’s name back out the other day and we had to come clean…well, sort of. We said that Jack was so sick and the therapy just was not helping him which led to his unfortunate death.

Oh and remember how I said there would be no more cats?  I lied about that, too.  You will come to realize one day that we have told many white lies throughout your childhood.

R.I.P. Jack.  The end.  You and your sister are both fine, and I now realize that I went to great lengths to shield your hearts from something you were both okay with in the end.  Boy when I am on, I am really on in this motherhood business.  But other times, I am so far off.

How is everything else?  For anyone else who asks, I use many phrases that involve swear words to describe life as it has been the last few months.  Take that for what it is worth.  There have been many ups and downs, and most days feel like we are just entering a boxing ring with a defending world champ.  But we battle on because that is what we do best.

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Kendal’s face is all of us right now…

I can’t believe I almost forgot this–you have glasses now!  I mean you definitely hate them, but they sure are cute.  So far they have only had to be repaired once, which isn’t too bad considering how much you detest them.

In other news…you have a brand new baby cousin who is too cute for words, we had our first snowfall at the new house and we spent some much needed time as a family in the Dells last weekend for a family Christmas gathering. You gave us quite a scare when we had to get your labs drawn unexpectedly the end of last week, but all was well with your results.  Always full of surprises Miss Tessa Jo.  wp-1481308607512.png

Of course there is so much that I did not cover.  In time, though.  Right now we are playing a never ending game of catch-up in everyday life while trying to get ready for another beautiful Christmas.  More to come soon…

Love, Mom.

 

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Little Doesn’t Last Long

“When did you get so big?” I asked my two–wait, almost three–year old recently.  “Yesterday mom.  That’s when I got so big,” she replied with certainty.  “Yeah me, too mom,” her big sister chimed in.

No really, I thought, when did it happen?  They climb in and out of the tub on their own, dress themselves. And their hands, without even the slightest of baby squish anymore, wrap around mine when they tell me they love me. Yesterday I held them for the first time; today they are singing all the words to Taylor Swift songs.  It is easy to get sidetracked as they grow.  I don’t mean to; I suppose it just comes with the territory.

That transition from newborn to big kid seems like it happens overnight. Somewhere in between scrubbing crusty cereal off the kitchen chairs, discovering crayon on the walls and marker on the carpet, breakfast giggles, first wagon rides of the new year and falling asleep while reading yet another Dr. Seuss book, I tend to forget that someday–long before I will be ready–they will be grown up.  I won’t be reading bedtime stories or strolling two little girls to the park forever.

When those days come, I hope the sight of marker stains from days past will take me right back to these very times.

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I complain about the messes.  I scold them for silly things.  We rush through the days without thinking to slow down. Then out of nowhere I am reminded of how quickly time is passing, and I am remember to appreciate the hard days of parenting too.

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We enforce rules and sometimes we bend them too.  And today bending the rules meant wearing sparkly dress-up dresses for no reason other than they wanted to.

I really was not prepared for how fast this all goes.  Last night both of the girls asked me to rock them to sleep so I did.  We have gotten into a strict bedtime routine lately that I forgot how much I missed wrapping them up in their blankies and rocking them to sleep.  One held my shirt sleeve and the other held my hand.

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Today:  “Can you hold my baby for a little bit mommy?”  Right before I was about to tell her I couldn’t, I realized the chores could wait. My phone could be put down.  My attention could easily be her’s.  With a baby doll in my arms, she says “Okay.  I have to go to work.  Change her diaper and feed her a bottle.  Don’t drop her.  Okay?  Thanks mom.”

Sooner than later, they won’t even pick up a baby doll.  Answer that toy phone.  Eat the play food.  Rock them to sleep.  Listen to their stories–even if you’re busy.  Build the lego towers and tip them right over.  Read the extra book.  Give them sugar.  Create memories.  Make a mess.  Play hide and seek. Play house.  Play beauty parlor, school, dress-up…whatever they want. Be silly. Let their imaginations soar.

Because little doesn’t last long.

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