Monday, January 19, 2015

The Days of Our Lives


Soo....big news (that I super vaguely alluded to in our last "life lately" update): Dustin got a job! He worked for a bit when we moved here, but that job wasn't the right fit for him (that sounds like a really diplomatic way of skirting over some drama, but truly it was a wonderful job that he just wasn't made for). So rather than slog it out in a role that was slowly sucking his soul dry (there's my signature dramatic flair!) he's been home with the kiddos. In addition to stay-at-home dad-ing it, he's been taking a class to get his teaching license renewed, and doing some freelance work for his old company back in Pittsburgh. It's been a bit of an unexpected detour for our family, but for the most part, it's been wonderful. I won't speak on his behalf too much (please, it's what I do) but he really loved being with the kids, and tried to take advantage of it as much as possible while we waited to figure out what might be next. We thought teaching might be the next phase (he loved it back in Cincinnati, and really missed it, plus thought the schedule would be a pretty perfect fit for our family), but he was also looking into corporate jobs more in line with his recent experience. And...very long story short, last week he was offered a metrics and analytics position and accepted it. And he starts today. What?! AND the very best/craziest part, is that his new job is at my company! Yep. The old gang is back together again. #powercouple

So as we prep for this new phase, I thought it would be fun to document the routine we're leaving behind. Being a SAHD isn't for everyone, but let me just tell you, my husband rocked it, and it made my life more than a little bit easier in the process. So while I'm totally supportive of his dreams to learn something new, take a risk, and you know...spend his days with people who don't poop their pants...a big part of me is also sad to say goodbye to our current set up. This has been an adjustment period, full of learning, and balancing, and relearning, and re-balancing, but it's also been such a sweet, sweet season for our family that I will look back on fondly.

Oh- and before I get into the specifics, I wanted to include a blurb from the last Day in the Life post I did over two years ago. Turns out, besides everything, not much has changed:
"before I share my daily routine, let me just add this disclaimer: It’s impossible describe my day without Dustin’s because it would be impossible to do my life without his. We’re a team like that. And very, very quickly it will be clear to anyone reading that the secret to any of my success is Dustin. Seriously. If I had any advice to give, it wouldn’t be time saving tricks, or multi-tasking tips. It would be choose your mate wisely. I somehow stumbled into this gem of a man and locked him in. And I’ve been reaping the benefits ever since."
So now you know not to expect some "secrets form a working mom" treasure trove of advice. In fact, this entire entry might be interesting to me and only me (and debatable at that) but for whatever reason I'm fascinated with the details of people's schedules. How do they do things differently? What aspects could I try or learn? Where is there a common ground of just trying to survive the madness?
So this might just be a post for me to review years later, to remember what life with two toddlers looked like. Or it might be semi-helpful for someone else to read and see how we manage (and struggle). So with that...on with the fun.

5:30- Dustin gets up and heads to his 6AM Crossfit class. He goes around 4 times a week, I think, but I can't really be sure because I sleep like a rock, and barely register his movement 99% of the time. It's a gift really.

7:45- Piper and Fin wake up. Piper takes her "ok to wake" clock pret-ty seriously, and we've somewhat accidentally (due to the time change, and a few random late nights) moved her wake up time back almost an hour over the last year or so. She was a struggle with her early morning wakeups for a long time, so I cherish this system. (for what it's worth, she typically wakes up sometime around 7 or 7:30, but dutifully waits until her magic green light comes on. Seriously- magic). Fin wakes up around 7:30ish too, but she's happy to play in her crib for a bit. She rarely even makes a peep, other than some cheerful babbling.
7:45- I wake up. I try to set my alarm for 7:20, thinking that if I actually manage to get up by 7:30 I could at least shower before the kiddos are up and about....But....I pretty much just love to sleep, and find myself snoozing until I'm greeted by an un-ignorable little face pressed against mine, proudly announcing- "MAMA! Wook! I made it to Green Wight!"
7:50- After checking all the super important updates on my phone (aka: emailed coupons, Instagram, and Timehop app) I actually have to get moving, or I'll be late. Or more accurately, I have to get moving, and will likely still be late. Here's where we get real: I shower every other day. It's a very simple, and obvious plan, day 1: hair down, day two: ponytail and bangs clipped back. I hustle through the routine while Dustin and the kids are downstairs doing their thing- which is breakfast prep, and an episode of Piper's TV-fav du jour. Dustin typically whips up some pancakes and/or cheesy eggs for all of us, while the jammy-clad girls zone out on the couch.
8:10 (ish)- I join the crew downstairs, and we all eat together. Kind of. The girls eat at the table, while Dustin and I eat/chat/clean/prep/pack my lunch etc. etc. I'm sure there's a way to streamline this (like...don't be so stinking lazy at night?) but we haven't really gotten our act together.

8:15- I should leave.
8:30- I should definitely leave. I gather up all my bags, kiss the babies goodbye (which looks more like chasing Fin down because she thinks it's a game, and yelling "BYE, BYE, BYYYYYYE, PIPER!" repeatedly, because she's once again glued to the remainder of her show, thus, I'm invisible/silent to her.
8:30- AM commute, listening to my current audio book. I also still put my makeup on in the car. I confess this as the first effort to change. Someday.
8:55- Park, and walk to my office. Stop for a covert selfie if schedule allows and wardrobe inspires.
9:00- Arrive at work. From then on, my day looks like: work, work, meetings, work, work, so many meetings, eat something at my desk while working, annnnnnnnnnnd done. It's nothing extraordinary, and not overly hectic compared with what I'm used to. Just a solid stream of stuff to do until it's time to pack up. There's probably always at least a half hour ish of work that just doesn't manage to fit in the day, so it gets pushed to the next one. But by and large, it's a pretty manageable schedule, and I'm thankful that I can get out at 5 most days. (P.s. Even on the rougher days, I don't dare complain. It's a sweet gig, and if I'm being real, many days even involve a snack/treat/booze. #agencylife)


**meanwhile, back at the ranch**
8:30- Two days a week my mom watches the girls- usually Tuesdays and Thursdays, but it's pretty loose. She comes to the house to pick them up, which is extra awesome. So early morning is typically just getting dressed and packing up bla-bla and Jelly (the closest thing they have to "lovies"). If it's a "g'mi/papa day" they go over by 9 and come back after nap, around 4:30ish. (She drops them off too. Is that the best?)

Now, if it's a "daddy day" it typically look a little something like this:

9:00- Play a bunch, or take a bath, or go to Target/Kroger. Or all three.
10:00- Fin probably needs/wants a nap, but that's likely inconvenient because it means staying home pretty much all day, so usually it's better to skip it and try to ride out the crankiness. Snacktime is a good distraction.
10:30- Errand running and more playing, either at home (play doh, coloring, puzzles, stroller racing etc.) or a trip to the indoor playground, aka germ pit, at the mall.
12:00- Lunch...at Chick Fil A if they're really, really lucky.


1:30- Naptime! Dustin jams in the billion and two things he has to get done (usually a work commitment of some kind, or some writing for class, and some housework, plus all the things I put on his daily "if you get a minute, can you just do a few random things for me?" list) before the kids are up again.
3:30- Piper wakes up. She gets to watch a show on PBS kids or Netflix.
4:00- Fin wakes up. Everyone gets a snack. Play, play, play while Dustin gets dinner ready.




**meanwhile, back in the rat race**
5:10- Scramble to wrap up whatever I can, or at least transfer to my to-do list for tomorrow, before sending an "on my way" text and heading out.
5:50- Arrive at home. Most days the family is just sitting down to dinner, so I walk in just in time to join. If they're sitting down already, I'm greeted with loud shouts of MAMA!, and if they haven't yet gathered at the table, then I'm pretty much bowled over with hugs when I walk in. It is: the best. Then we all sit down and hold hands while Piper prays, then we all chat while we eat.
6:30- More playing, while Dustin and I clean up dinner. (sometimes we get a head start while they eat a treat.) This wild hour is usually filled with wrestling, pillow piles, tickling, dance parties, and chasing each other around the "loop" of the kitchen/living room. Sometimes we squeeze in 8 or so rounds of hide and seek, and/or 7 library books.
7:15- Clean up and start the transition up to bedtime. The girls get jammies on, and brush their teeth. If it's early enough we'll read a few books.
7:45- In bed. Lights out. Sweet dreams. Fin might cry for 3 minutes, but then is zonked immediately. 
8:00- Dustin and I tinker around getting a few random things done, but because he does the majority (read: all) of the housework/chores/errands, our evenings are delightfully free. So a typical night involves me blogging or saving pictures etc, and the two of us watching an episode (or 3) of Parenthood on Netflix. I know. The glamour. It's overwhelming sometimes. 
8:30- Piper usually stops singing and goes to sleep. Usually.
10:30- Dustin heads to bed, and I promise I'm right behind him.
12:30- I finally tear myself away from whatever crazy online 

So that's the shape of it right now. Or at least...last week, last month, last year. And now....we enter a new phase that's going to look a bit similar, and also a lot different. I'm scared (justifiably so...we did the whole- both of us work full time thing with two kids for a while, and it was tiring) and excited (justifiably so...we did the whole- both of us work for the same company thing for years, and it was pretty great). We'll have to figure out daycare dropoff again, but we'll get the perks of a carpool buddy. And we'll have a lot more planning to do at night to make things run smoother, but we'll have a little extra cash to potentially justify outsourcing some of that effort (cleaning service? yes please!) It won't always be easy, because nothing is, but I've got the best crew to figure it out with me, so we'll enjoy the adventure as we muddle through it all together.

P.S. If you're diggin' the "slice of our everyday" vibe, you can out all of our Day in The Life posts,

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Friday, January 16, 2015

Show Your Real: Ali

I was "introduced" to Ali by a mutual friend of ours, and though I've only got to know her through her blog and a few exchanged emails, I instantly fell in love with her heart, and connected so easily with her stories. I read her post about her friend Donte and his new home and found myself crying at my desk, in awe of her compassion, and faith. Yesterday she posted an update on that topic, which once again inspires me (and makes me tear up) with its honest portrayal of what faith and disappointment look like- even when they're mired together in the "middle" of the stories God is writing in our lives. I'm honored to be able to point people towards her as an example of transparent struggles and real faith and grateful to have her share some of the lighter (but still real) side of marriage here today.
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When you get married, you learn which traditions you have to keep from your spouse’s family in order to have your spouse in enjoy the holidays.  For my husband, JR, Granny’s homemade cinnamon rolls and homemade apple sauce are a must.


The year we were engaged, when JR would first be spending Christmas with my family, I met secretly with Granny and other women in his family to learn how to make the cinnamon rolls and apple sauce.  I surprised him Christmas morning with his special breakfast.
Two years later, we were back with my family this year for Christmas.  Christmas Eve I head to the kitchen to make the rolls in order to please my husband.  I want him to enjoy time with my family.  I want him to appreciate the effort I make to include his traditions.  I want every part of Christmas day to be perfect.  Maybe you can relate?  Holiday survival – keep the people happy, keep the people full.

Over the course of the hour, I work in the kitchen alone making the dough, rolling it out, and stuffing it with sugary buttery goodness.  (Did I mention we were also working with a shortage of butter and had figured out how to perfectly ration it to get through Christmas day until stores could re-open the day after?)  Right as I’m placing my finished work in the pan, my mom comes in and sees the yeast packet still sitting out.  She asks, “Did you mean to leave out the yeast?” 
Whoops.  Nope.  Absolutely not.  Definitely wanted to have that in there. 

As I’m half laughing/half crying, my husband walks in and asks, “Does this mean we aren’t going to have cinnamon rolls?”  His tone wasn’t angry; it more closely resembled that of a sad little boy who didn’t receive the present for which he hoped.

I had a few options at that point.  Melt down.  Cry because “Christmas was ruined.” Forget the cinnamon rolls altogether. Or go to google, figure out some substitutions and start over from scratch.

The cinnamon rolls did not go according to plan.  I finished the endeavor well after midnight.  The second batch had much less butter than the first.  But the next morning, they were still delicious.

Sometimes my heart desires for everything to go perfectly smooth.  I like everything in the proper place and everyone to be happy.  But sometimes messes and mix-ups happen.  I was reminded this Christmas Eve to laugh at my mistakes and shortcomings; to regroup and try again.  You never know when Plan B may end up better than Plan A.
There may be some messes and mix-ups in your life right now.  They may be involving bigger issues than a batch of cinnamon rolls and a holiday.  But I think the same things are still true.  We need to laugh at our mistakes and shortcomings.  We need to dust ourselves off, regroup and try again.  And we need to trust that sometimes Plan B is a way better option than Plan A was ever going to be.  For me personally, a lot of times Plan A is my plan and Plan B is God’s plan.  I’ve never regretted coming to Jesus in repentance and opting for Him to take control in Round Two.

I’m going to keep baking, keep living and keep embracing my messes as I go.  May you be encouraged to do the same.

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http://bowdenisms.blogspot.com/search/label/showyourreal%20guest%20post


Show Your Real is a series of guest posts centered around the concept of authenticity. The goal is to encourage each other to expose the reality of our lives- good and bad- and to foster a sense of community that goes beyond the often surface-y interactions of social media. And you're all invited to participate! Please write, caption, comment, link, and hashtag to spread the #showyourreal love. And if you would like to contribute a guest post to the series, please email me (cjsbowden@gmail.com).

Monday, January 12, 2015

Little Pip-Speaks: Volume 13

The New Year, New Quips, Same Old Silly Pip edition.
http://bowdenisms.blogspot.com/search/label/little%20pip-speaks 
Pip-speak #1:
Piper {refusing a nap}: I can't sleep. I promise not to be cranky. I'll try my best. 

Pip-speak #2:
Piper {regarding her chalkboard drawing}: I hafta unrase it

Pip-speak #3:
Piper {referring to Fin stomping around}: Do you hear her footprints?

Pip-speak #4:
Piper {to Daddy}: You are the silliest billy you ever billied. 

Pip-speak #5:
Piper: Mom, you're the best mommy in the world. You get a medal {puts imaginary medal on my neck}. And I'm the best piper in world. Here is my medal. {puts imaginary medal on her neck}. We match!

Pip-speak #6:
Piper {after opening a new set of footie pajamas on Christmas Eve}: They're my new jammies? Do I get to keep them? I've always wanted jammies like this!

Pip-speak #7:
Piper {singing}: Alice the camel has no humps. Alice is a...corn! 
Mama: A corn? Not horse?
Piper: Yes. A corn is a type of hedgehog
Mama: {???}

Pip-speak #8:
Piper: I stuck both of my stickers together and put them on Fin's car seat because she's the sweetest girl I've ever seen. 

Pip-speak #9:
Mama: Do you like your new  playhouse? Who do you think got you that? 
Piper: I think Father Christmas brought it!

Pip-speak #10:
Piper {after throwing a fit about who knows what}: I need something to wipe my tears. I will use my jammies and then we can wash them in the dryer.

Pip-speak #11:
Piper: Mama! Today we made snow ice cream! We used healthy snow, mama!
Mama: Healthy snow? 
Piper: Yeah. The white ones. Not yellow.

Pip-speak #12:
Piper {shopping with my mom}: G'mi, can we get a card for mommy and daddy?
G'mi: Sure, what do you want it to say?
Piper: I want it to say thank you for G'mi.

Pip-speak #13:
Piper {in the backseat of the car}: I love you. Period. So come back soon. {pause...} I was talking on my phone.
(sounds like maybe someone has overheard her share of "voice to texts"?)

Pip-speak #14:
Piper {after seeing a shirt she liked at a store with my mom}: G'mi! You could buy me that for my birthday! 
G'mi: If I do, Piper you're going to have to forget I bought it and be surprised on your birthday. 
Piper: I can do that G'mi. I can forget. 
Piper {smiling, repeating under her breath}: I will not forget I will not forget I will not forget.

Pip-speak #15:
Mama: Daddy's going to be home in a little bit, because he has to help someone paint. 
Piper: Why?
Mama: Well because they need help so they asked daddy to come over. 
Piper: Because they needed a big strong man! 

Pip-speak #16:
Piper: Dear Jesus: Thank you for the food. Thank you for the wonderful meal. Thank you for the trip to the library, Jesus. Amen. 
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Friday, January 9, 2015

New Years-ing

Happy New Year! I can keep saying that, right? Yeah.....I latched on to Christmas for a month plus, so I'd say New Year's deserves at least a week and a half of fan fare. 

I'm not really making resolutions this time around, but even without that part, I'm still pretty into the ceremony that comes with a New Year. It means new wire bound planners (Franklin Covey nerds, holla!), clean sweeps of the house, and the inexplicable sense of hope that this is the year. The year of greatness!

In reality, nothing has really changed much...our routine this week is pretty much the same as it was a week ago, there are just fewer pine needles underfoot. But regardless, the New Year still has a fresh, shiny allure, and I'm all too happy to get sucked into that sense of open possiblities. So let's honor of the start of the year with another Life Lately List (otherwise known as "All the 'Ings"). I'm thinking of it as a time capsule for the beginning of 2015. Here's what we're up to around here, right about now:


Making: some big decisions about Dustin's job. I almost never write about work, and almost never never write about Dustin's job...but he's been home with the kids for the last few months which has been pretty awesome. We knew that wasn't the forever-plan, so I tried not to get too attached to it, and now it's looking like things could be changing sooner than later. (argh! super vague cliffhanger!)
Cooking: nothing. Well...almost nothing. Since Dustin's been home, he's been doing most/all of the cooking. He's also been in charge of the grocery shopping. Did I mention I love having him at home?

Drinking: grapefruit soda. They're 10 for $10 at Kroger and I just can't get enough. I've been buying them pretty much since we moved here, and now our fridge looks like an episode of cribs with our bulk beverage purchases. (Coke Zero in 4 varieties, and a stockpile of pumpkin ale are keeping them company as well).
Reading:
(listening) to Sharp Objects, by Gillian Flynn. It was fascinating, and addicting, and utterly horrifying. I could barely get through parts of it, but was just intrigued enough to push through the creepiness. In the end, I'd say I liked it, though part of me is still ick-ed out by some of the details. Pretty sure they won't be adapting this one into a movie (or at least not one I'll go see).
Wanting: the energy to complete the millions (ok...thousands...) of projects I have in mind for the house.
Looking:
for a cute pair of low black boots....and failing at it so hard.
Playing: hide and seek with the kids. They're awful at it, but love it SO much. Fin covers her eyes when everyone else does, runs around shrieking with glee, and ends up wedging herself underneath the crib, giggling like a madwoman. When it's Piper's turn to hide, she doesn't even wait for the full count to be over before loudly proclaiming her "hiding" place: "I'm in the bathroom!!" "I'm under this blanket, Daddy!!" And on our turns, we have to hide more-or-less in broad daylight for her to find us. It's terrible, and endlessly hilarious.

Wasting: time watching Netflix. It's like the black hole of my motivation. I come home with big dreams and big goals, and then: Parenthood season 5. Done-zo.
Wishing: Summer would come soon. I hate to wish for time to speed up, but I just miss my backyard, and my neighbors, and the laid back ease that comes with lazy Summer evenings.

Enjoying: family dinner night. Every Thursday my mom cooks a huge meal for our huge family and we eat (and yell, and laugh) together around the huge table. It's pretty much awesome.
Waiting:
to plan my birthday party. Well, less waiting, and more...lazing. I'm just not sure we'll do much this year, which I'm strangely ok with. Maybe a nice meal with my husband will be the right way to ring in the big 3-1.
Liking:
finally getting some art up on the walls. It's crazy how something simple like that 1: takes forever to actually do, and 2: makes such a difference in how a home feels.

Wondering: if I'll ever get off of my hamster sleep cycle....no matter how hard I try, I just can't go to bed before midnight...but then I'd sleep 'til 9:30 if anyone would let me.
Loving: finding more magical photo memories from Christmas.




Hoping: that this is the year of friendship. We're starting to get to know people more, but still haven't fully established our core circle of go-to BFFs. Good things take time, I suppose.
Marveling: at how much of a kid Piper is. I swear sometimes three is practically five which is almost 10 which might as well be 30. She comes up with the craziest stuff (we're due for another round of Pip-speaks...I've got some choice ones jotted down.) and has me almost convinced that this is my favorite age yet (I say that about pretty much all the ages).
Needing:
a new glove. I've only got right-y. (Lefty? Where did you go? I miss you!)
Smelling: a Tobacco & Oak candle that I should have never gotten addicted to (I swear I'm hooked- do they put nicotine in it? or does it just smell that good?) I found it on super clearance at Homegoods and bought it on a whim. Now that I love it, I of course learn they're impossible to find, and go for $20 a pop on ebay. Not sure I like it that much.
Wearing:
Layers. It is utterly freezing this week, and has made me want to wear sweaters on top of sweaters with a fur trimmed coat on top. Good thing the kids love their snow pants so much.

Following: my timehop entries. Do you guys have this app? It's the most blatenly self-centered nostalgic machine ever, and I of course, am in love.
Noticing:
tiny little moments, shared between sisters. I go on about it all the time to anyone who will listen, but truly, watching my girls play together has to be one of my favorite things on earth (and not just because them playing together means they're bugging me less). I love that they have each other, in all the teeny things, and someday, in all the big things. 
Thinking: about making another quilt. I don't need another project in general, and I don't need another quilt specifically, so it's pretty much a terrible idea. BUT- there's just something I love about the process of planning/dreaming about the fabrics and details, and problem solving and learning a new process or method of pulling it all together. Anyone up for another quilt-a-long
Giggling: at old snapshots of this goober:
Bookmarking: some ideas for Piper's "new" room. We haven't put any effort into her room, and it's just such a sad little beige trapezoid. We put a bunch of frames up in Fin's room earlier this year, and poor Piper has since been asking when she can have frames of her own (she even mentioned it on our last trip to Red Robin...she was jealous of their wall flair!) I'd like to finally pull together my jillions of pins into something special for her, I'm just having trouble deciding where to start. 
Feeling:
Grateful for 2014. And excited for 2015.


P.S. See the other 'ings from May, and August.
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Tuesday, January 6, 2015

Freely and Lightly

Today I'm over at Thrive Moms, talking about resolutions. (or...how I'm resolving not to resolve)...
Head over to their blog to check how these verses are inspiring my 2015, and chime in with what's on (or not on) your list!

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Monday, January 5, 2015

Happy New Year!

Lamest blog title ever. But it is a new year, and so far...It's pretty dang happy.






Hope you're having perfectly cliche, perfectly Happy New Year too!

Monday, December 29, 2014

So Much Yes

I posted a photo to instagram the other day using the caption "so much yes in this photo"...

A photo posted by Courtney Bowden (@bowdenisms) on
...I was just loving everything captured in that moment and didn't have words to sum it up better than YES.
But now looking back on our Christmas as a whole (not that it's over...please say it's not over!) and I'm feeling like "so much yes" is truly the motto for our entire holiday.

Matching jammies? Yes.
Candy before and after dinner? Yes.
Crazy late bedtime to make time for a special book and scattering of "reindeer food" on the lawn? Oh, YES.

Christmas is Yes. Yes to all of it, and then some more on top of that. More friends, more family. More treats. More books. More naps. More drinks. Even more drinks. More snuggles. More love More Jesus.

In general I am a more is more person, striving to come from "a place of yes" whenever I can. I was explaining my love (and collection) of ampersands to someone last week, and I said that basically I love the concept of AND. It's a principle of improve comedy, that you're always supposed to support your partner, going along with their idea, building on it with "yes, and". And while I'm not an improve comedian, I love that idea. Support each other...allow their dreams...build together...say YES when you can (which is probably a lot more often than I even think). It's worth noting perhaps, that I'm not an advocate of spoiled kids, drowning in presents, lacking any sense of boundaries or limits. But if there was ever a time to blur the edges of routine and rules in the name of memory making magic, then Christmas is it.

So much of toddlerhood is filled with NO. Many from me: "No you may not do that, or that, or that, or have that, or take that, or say that, or yell that..." And also so many from them- "No, no, nyee-OH, NO" all the live-long day. And there was still SO MUCH NO this holiday weekend, because even the powers of Santa and Baby Jesus combined can't overcome the will of our two little blonde furies (nor can they make up entirely for my occasional impatience and frustration despite my best efforts) But in spite of all the moments where I should have done better, or I wished they behaved better, our holiday was still marked with so much good, so much magic nestled in the ordinary, so much beauty of this incredible life we're given one little wild moment at a time. And as I look back on the last few days as a family, I'm so thankful for the yeses. Some were audible: "Please mama, can we?" "Yes!" And some were silent: Can you believe how lucky were are? How cute they are? How awesome this is? No, not at all...but also yessssssssss.

Here are a few snapshots from our pile of yes:

 Santa came!! YESSSSS
Tiny hands, tiny presents:



Temporary tattoos on chubby forearms. Zebras wearing Santa hats. The way babies squat to do everything. These are a few of my unexpected favorite things. 








Using new play-doh toys to "help" make cinnamon rolls
Cream cheese frosting is always yes

The neighbors are throwing away their old playhouse, would you like it? uh, Yes!
Let's plop the kids on the kitchen table so I can take 1,000 pictures...Yes?


 No words. Just yes.
Wearing her new mittens + stealing her sister's new toy (met with the opposite of yes: "NO! That's my favorite new toy I got for my birf-day from Santa. I very like it. You cannot have it, FIN-NY!")
Zoning out hard while watching Frosty the Snowman Returns.






So we had a yes kind of Christmas, and I'm so very hopeful we can keep seeing all the beauty of this yes kind of life...

Merry Christmas!




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