I have thought many many times over the last few months about how much I'm missing out on recording memories. Right now, the kids are all sound asleep, the hubs, who is usually burning the midnight oil doing work, is also sound asleep, and I have the quiet house. So here goes:
Rachel. This girl drives me nuts, no doubt. From the time she was a tiny little thing, she has been so intense. As soon as she figured out the whole language thing, she was talking. Nonstop. But I don't need to recount that, because I used to write a blog post every. single. day. But, hey, that's how it is with the first, right?!? Anyway, I was entirely hopeful that she would snap into some reasonable level of maturity when she turned four, but this last year has had its own trying times. But by and by, I see glimpses of that big girl I've been hoping for. She's definitely not a baby anymore, and we've had to cross bridges of unchartered waters this year--like explaining that she can't be lovey dovey with every man she meets (only family, please), and that it's just not cute when she fake laughs or acts wild around new people. Seems like common sense stuff, but I suppose we were taught it once, too (thanks, mom and dad...seriously). She's growing up. But wasn't she just a baby??
There are two things about Rachel that I am fascinated to watch and encourage. One thing is that she loves--and I mean LOVES--to do things with her hands. If it's a craft, she's all over it. Glue, scissors, stamps, stickers, markers, paint, fabric, beads--these things are not safe if she's around. A few weeks ago, Jarrad gave me flowers (I know--sweet, right?). I cut them down a bit and pulled off some of the leaves so they would look nice in my vase. Before I had a chance to clean up after myself, Rachel had created a picture for each kid in her preschool class using those discarded items. She glued one leaf and one stem to each piece of paper, colored a little, and wrote her friends' names. She was sure to take them to school the next day and handed them out so proudly.
And that brings me to the second fascinating-thing-about-Rachel. The girl loves loves loves giving gifts. Oddly, "gifts" is one of my love languages, which is quite handy (they say you speak your own language easiest, so I assume that the fact that Rachel loves to give gifts reflects that that's how she also feels loved). Last week, she came into my room one morning before school, and she asked if she could please give each of her friends an animal. Bear in mind that Rachel loves her stuffed animals and dolls. She plays with them more than any other type of toy. But I will be the first to admit that sometimes I feel like the stuffed animals might attempt a coup d'etat and completely take over, and so I did not object to her idea. I had no hand in the process whatsoever (I had my hand in other daily preparations), and she took it upon herself to find a bag and loaded up ten of her favorites. I was aghast at which ones she chose, and [sadly] I had to repress the urge to talk her out of some of them (why would I do that?? but I was still oddly bothered that she wanted to get rid of some of those animals that she loves so much). I reasoned in my head, though, that our friends and family who have gifted her with so many lovely toys and animals do so because they think those things will bring her joy, and, well, if they will bring her joy by giving them away, then I most certainly should not stand in her way, and I most certainly should encourage her. Do not hold onto things of this world, Child. And so she happily took all of the animals to school and handed them out, one-by-one, each child receiving the particular animal Rachel picked out for him/her. She was so happy. "Do you know why I want to do that, Mommy? Because I love people." She really said that. And I was so proud and thankful. And it's so odd, too, because she really has trouble (like any kid) sharing her toys when friends come over, or
even especially with her sister. I guess that's different, somehow.
I really can't wait to see how these things grow with Rachel. Will she always love to craft? Will giving always come so naturally to her, or will she become jaded? Maybe we were all like that once, who knows?
Well, that's Rachel. I think I'll end here and join the rest of my family's snooze time. The next chance I have to sit and ramble, I'll spill all about Carly--the sweet-faced one. That little girl definitely keeps me on my toes..