His Mercies are New!

It was fun to share our bunk bed move with you this week, thank you so much for your kind comments about their room. We are so happy with the results, it's given us fresh wind in our tired-of-this-condo sails! So far, it's been a good couple of days and as of tonight we're now officially one week into the move.  Bedtimes have been the easiest transition so far.  They take a little bit longer to settle down at night, we hear lots of "Hi!" and giggling going on for a few minutes, but they eventually stop chatting and have been sleeping very well together.  Nap times are a little bit harder.  They are usually more wound up and it takes a few escalating threats to keep everyone under control, but we get there, ha ha!  We've got some sensitivity training to do with Ava.  We're fairly certain Carter was dead asleep this afternoon until she woke him up to play in his bed...Not an event we'd like repeated!  I definitely need to train her to get out of her bed quietly and leave the room like a mouse while he's still sleeping :) We had a crabby boy this afternoon due to his lack of sleep! 
Our favorite thing about this move however, is the little partnership these two are building.  Ava has been able to "fly the coup" out of her big girl bed for almost 2 years now and she wastes no time when she's awake to come waltzing into the living room or our bedroom to let us know she's up.  Carter has not had the same luxury.  He's been confined to his crib for all of his short little life, so the idea of escaping is still pretty new.  When he wakes up he's so used to us coming to get him, I don't think he really knows what to do with his new found freedom!  So now that he's got a big sister to show him the ropes, we are greeted in the morning or after their naps with two little buddies holding onto their blankies, grinning as they walk down our hallway to find us.  It's precious.  Ava is always the one in front and Carter is two steps behind her.  This morning they couldn't find me, I was reading on our porch and I heard her say to him, "Dare's Mama, Carter!  Come dis way!"  And sure enough, two little faces were soon peeking around the sliders to say good morning.  Believe me, they're not always up to good, often they are partners in crime not peace!  But we love that they are growing in their relationship and learning to get along.  It's not perfect by any stretch of the imagination, but it's a work in progress that shows signs of promise every now and then...
Ava is a proud, big sister.  Classic in every sense of the word.  She's bossy, nurturing, concerned, loving, instructional, and loyal.  She loves her little brother.  Sometimes a little too much!  We've graduated from praying at the dinner table and announcing all of his "sins against her" for the day, to flat out telling him to "NO! You don't do dat to Ava, Carter! STOP buddy!!"  Followed immediately by, "MOM!! Carty's disobeyin!"  

Then it's Carter's turn to contribute his "NOOOO! ADA! NOOOO!" at which point I proceed to get up from whatever I've been doing so that when I hear the impending screaming or crying coming from their room, I'm already in motion to put out the latest fire.

Clearly there we have a 3 and almost 2 year old living at our house! 
We've got some serious character development to work on :) :) :)  
One minute the two of them are literally yelling in each other's faces and the next minute, I find them snuggled up together watching Curious George or playing with their toys, all smiles and giggles!    In general, these days are just exhausting.  Fun, rewarding, sweet and fleeting...but exhausting.  I was just telling my cousin last night, on one hand I am loving all the new things they can do and they ways that they are showing their independence and desire to do things on their own, but in the same breath, I often find myself barely making it through the day without losing my mind.  It is amazing to me to discover each day anew that I am truly not a patient person.  I'm not nearly as flexible as I long to be or as slow to anger as I wish I was.  I lose it daily, I have to apologize often and I'm always thanking the Lord for new mercies and grace that covers a multitude of sin.  The Lord is not short on material when it comes to my sanctification!  He's got all sorts of areas to refine and weed out! 

But even with all the stress and the work and the lack of peace that my days can hold, I wouldn't trade any of it for the alternative of life without them.  It's joy to my soul to start my day with their little faces searching for mine so that they can say, "Hi Mommy!  Good morning!  I sleeped a long time didn't I??"  Nothing beats sweaty, little hands reaching up to hold mine or tiny arms wrapped tightly around my neck.  I love to be in public and feel the firmness of their grip as they assess the room and draw nearer to their Mommy in insecurity, waiting for me to tell them all is well so they can get down and play.  To think I've got a lifetime ahead of me as their Mom is an overwhelming thought but one that also draws me nearer to the Lord in my own insecurity, waiting for Him to tell me all is well, He's right here with me.  This job is not for the faint of heart, not for those who think they know everything or can handle all that a 2 year old throws at them.  It's the opposite of that in fact.  It takes courage everyday to stay committed, faithful and engaged.  It requires humility to accept that each day and each stage is another opportunity to grow and learn and to seek the wisdom of the Lord and others who have gone before you.  And it's a real insult to your confidence to realize you are being completely dominated by someone who is 1/4th your size and incapable of going to the bathroom on their own.  But that's the beauty of motherhood.  There is this instant camaraderie that comes with being some one's Mommy.  Suddenly you join the ranks of many women who have been there and are doing that.  Mommies who are standing with you, who extend a hand smudged with peanut butter and who bear the weight of motherhood the same way you do, one desperate prayer at a time. 
I love these little people.
I can't get enough of their little haircuts and the fact that they are basically the same size now.
I'm so grateful to be the only one they call Mommy.
And I'm not ashamed to tell you that I'm SO glad they are fast asleep in their beds, giving me a chance to recover and rest for tomorrow's fun, forgetting all the troubles of today! 
Can a I get an amen fellow Mommy friends??

His mercies are new every morning, friends...

...and GREAT is His faithfulness, thank you Jesus! 

Happy (almost) Friday to all of you.
No matter what today or this week has held for you, I truly hope you make the most of tomorrow and enjoy it to the fullest!  New day, new mercies...aren't you glad??

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