A Beautiful Moment 

Most days are routine; a bit mundane and whole lot of crazy. They’re the kind of days where you take it all for granted and forget for a moment that all your dreams have come true and you are living them. 

Mostly because you are exhausted. 

Those are the majority of my days. I dislike admitting it; admitting that I take J and our tiny humans for granted more often than I should. 

I see the magic and the beauty in the midst of all the chaos. But I don’t always appreciate it. 

We are currently on vacation. A much needed vacation. 

Sweet M is probably never coming home. He’s found his happy place right on the shore where the waves crash, not fully in the sand or in the water. That’s the in between line of his peoples and he demands I deposit him there and then situate myself near by. 

Miss H is a fish. She’s always been a fish. Today she said to me, randomly, “You’re so beautiful, Momma.” And then proceeded to show me her bucket of “beautiful,” broken shells. God knew what He was doing with this girl. 

And Mr. B. Oh boy. That boy used to dislike the water, and now you’d never know. He swims like a fish and is more brave than I’d like. But his bravery is what gets him so far in life, so I know I cannot reel him back to squelch my own worries. 

I sat in Sweet M’s happy place this evening: the sun setting in the pink sky over the ocean; Miss H and Mr. B jumping through the crashing waves, uninhibited, free, in their own happy bubble, and Sweet M nursing on and off, occasionally sucking the salt off my arm or his fingers. The waves tumbled in around me like the a soothing lullaby written just for my prudent soul.  

It was a truly beautiful moment. 

Right there in that moment, in that window of time, everything I’ve ever wanted in life was neatly tied up in a bow and put before me in the most beautiful of ways. 

Happy, free kids with a relationship with one another that I know time and distance won’t be able to strain in 20 years. They’re the driver of their lives, and they don’t take one another for granted. 

Beautiful babe in my arms. The baby my soul yearned for before he could ever even be a possibility. 

J was in the condo doing homework; but where our children are, he too always is. He’s so much a part of these tiny people. 

And there was me, watching these fabulous people while I sat in a bikini with my stretch-marked covered gut hanging out for the whole world, not giving one single fuck, and loving everything this beautiful moment had to show me. 

Not every moment in life gets to be this perfect; but that one was. So I’m going to stick it in my pocket and hold onto it, and pull it out on a rainy day. 

Miss H’s Paris Room

Miss H has been dreaming about Paris pretty much since she’s been dreaming. I won’t lie; she’s probably been swayed a bit by outside forces. Like her parents.

Paris is alive in our house in the form of art. We talk about it a lot, too.

I’ve been there four times. It’s where J proposed to me (the second time anyway!). So she comes by it honestly.

So when she was finally ready to move into her own big girl room (we moved her and Mr. B into a room together 15 months ago when we moved them out of our room), she requested a Paris-themed bedroom.

I was happy to oblige.

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I love everything about this room!Well, except for the storage situation. But you can’t win them all. Now that each kid has their own bedroom, and Sweet M is on the move, all of their toys have to be in their own rooms. No more playrooms.

I researched bed canopies and crowns for weeks. I found a lot of things I liked, but nothing that was just right.

Since J and I just have so much free times on our hands these days (you read that sarcasm right?), I figured giving us another small project wouldn’t hurt.

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J used leftover barnwood from the dining room table he made me this past spring (yeah, I married an amazing dude), to make the base. H and I headed over to Hobby Lobby and she picked out the fabric. And as an afterthought we added the butterflies to the top. They were a gift from H’s Grandma J on her first birthday, and they’ve survived this long!

And voila! An adorable shabby chic bed crown.

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I snagged that adorable comforter she’d been eyeballing at Target for months when it was on sale for 50% off. There was only one left so it essentially was the deciding factor as to whether she had a queen sized bed in her room or a twin sized because that’s how we roll. Throw on the decorative pillows that she stole from our bedroom, a homemade pillow from when she was smaller, and a cute “hello” pillow we picked up…from somewhere (Hobby Lobby or Target, I’m sure), plus 309847239874 stuffed animals, and she’s set!

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Her desk was a labor of love. Mostly J’s labor, but I spent a lot of time agonizing over what would perfectly fit right here and what it should look like. H’s Grandpa J came to the rescue when he offered up his grandmother’s desk. I verified we could paint it, and it worked perfectly! I genuinely could not be happier with how this turned out! (And that little Eiffel Tower and string of pompom garland? You guessed it: Hobby Lobby!)

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Since those drawers are stuffed full of her craft supplies, I wanted this area to really repensent the crafty side of her. Hence her two personal paintings up there. Plus one of my all time favorite wall art pictures.

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This picture doesn’t really “go” with the room; it was in her and B’s shared room where it did flow. But I love it too much and feel like it so deeply encompasses how we try to raise her that I couldn’t let it go just because it wasn’t perfectly themed.

“Be Your Own Kind of Beautiful.” There is the physical aspect of course; I don’t want her to adhere to societies ideas of beauty; I want her to stand out as her own.

But more deeply than that, I want her soul to be beautiful. I want her to know her beauty so deeply, that she never questions it or falters.

Yesterday at school there was an incident where she took a boy’s hat, and passed it around in a game of keep away. The boy’s feelings were very much hurt as he did not find it to be an enjoyable game.

I talked to her – maybe too much – about what happened. And then later that evening I made her talk to J about it too. Miss H is a lot of things: sassy, vivacious, strong. But unkind? Nope. Never. Okay, okay, except sometimes to her brother. But little brother’s can be annoying at times.

So I was super surprised, a little disturbed, and caught way off guard when I’d heard she’d not been so kind to this little boy. After a lot of talking, I really do think she thought she was playing and having fun; it wasn’t until after a few minutes that she realized he was not having any fun.

We talked in depth about why he may not have found it to be fun. He’s a little more on the quiet side; the antithesis of my loud, boisterous girl. She hadn’t asked or been given consent to take his hat and play keep away. So to him, it could have easily felt like he was being teased, picked on, or down right bullied.

Needless to say, H was a bit horrified. It hadn’t been her intentions.

I told her she needed to make it right with him.

Although “I’m sorry” is always valuable; it only goes so far. We try so hard to model and instill in our children that when you are really sorry, you try to find a way to make it better when possible (it’s obviously not always possible).

When she woke up this morning she asked for a piece of scrapbook paper and she drew a picture with a stegosaurus and wrote him a letter that said. “I am sorry you did not want to play. I thought you did, but I was wrong. I really want to be your friend. Can we play something else?”

She gave it to him at school today. They played tag in the gym.

Y’all. That is the kind of beautiful I want that girl to be. The one who plays with the kid who may be a little different, or quiet, and doesn’t care what anyone else thinks.

But I digress. Back to Miss H’s bedroom.

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The very, very, very best part, in my opinion, are these amazing images.

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I collaborated with Nursery Rembrandts and I couldn’t love them more! More importantly, Miss H loves them.

They’re personalized for her specifically with her name: “Halloway’s Fleurs” (there isn’t much more in life that this girl loves more than flowers – other than maybe Paris!), “Page’s Patisserie,” and possibly H’s favorite of all – her cousin’s name: “Olivia’s Café.”

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Y’all, seriously. These are some of the most lovely wall art pieces she’s ever owned. They’re adorable and really bring Miss H’s whole bedroom together.

I’ve got my fingers crossed that there is another little girl in our future some day that will let me decorate her room with other art from Nursery Rembrandts because it is all just so stunning (or maybe just a niece. I’m not sure I can survive another girl). So seriously, if you’re looking for a picture, or 10, head over to Nursery Rembrandts for your perfect piece!

I really loved how Miss H’s room came together. It’s so pretty and elegant and so, so Miss H.

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This cute find came from the clearance section at TJ Maxx
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My paternal grandfather made this baby cradle for me when I was a little girl. It’s one of the very few things from my childhood that I have.
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Because she will always need a picture of her and Mr. B: the dynamic duo.
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Cross from her Baptism