Thursday, October 23, 2014

Birthday buddies.

Tenley and JD are birthday buddies. Ten turned two on Saturday (how?!) and today is JD's big day (he's 29). I remember being a little bummed when she was born that JD would always have to share his birthday week with her. . . but I got over that quickly because, I mean, how long can you stay bummed when you've got a sweet new baby? I digress. I tend to do that. Oh gosh. . . 

Now, I kind of like the idea of having their birthdays so close together because it allows me to really celebrate two of my biggest blessings. This birthday week provides a very obvious opportunity for me to reflect on and express gratitude for my family.

These two. They're a playful duo- always finding ways to add spontaneity, giggles, and light to my life. I'm grateful they let me in on the fun.

Tenley has such a sensitive spirit. She is very aware of when people are hurting or sad. Last week, I had a rough day and just felt awful. I came home early from work and the only thing I wanted to do all night was lay on the couch and be a grump. Tenley periodically came over and kissed my cheek, cocking her head to the side, as if to say, "Are you okay, Momma?" After I thanked her and reassured her I was fine, she'd go about doing her thing. Every few minutes, she'd repeat the process. . . occasionally whispering in my ear that she loved me. So, so sweet. Earlier this week, we went to a friend's house to play. Her friend took a tumble while we were over and he was crying a lot. Tenley just wanted to rub his arm and sit by him until he felt better. She has an undeniable nurturing tendency and I'm so grateful for her compassion.

Don't let that sweet streak fool you though! She's also got a feisty independence gene in her. I try to encourage and foster her independence, but sometimes she's just so dang defiant. She likes to do things her way and she likes to decide when she's going to do them! Haha, but don't worry- she's easily swayed with dum-dum suckers and fruit snacks ;) 

I'm so thankful for her innocence, for the way she delights in the littlest things, and for how she encourages, pushes, and tries me. Thank you for being my daughter, Tenley Mae. I love you, you sassy two-year-old.  

These pictures are one indication of why I'm so grateful for JD. He decided we needed to experience these mountains in all their autumn wonder. He decided we should take family pictures while we were up there. He decided the locations for the shots and then he took the pictures (with a tripod and timer). He's the best. 

I love his commitment to helping me record our life experiences. I love his support for my hobbies and interests. I love his willingness to help me learn new skills. I love his patience. I love his work ethic and how he puts so much effort into providing for our family. I love his affection for Tenley. I love his concern for his family members. I love his forgiving nature. I love his persistence in teaching Tenley to pray. I love the way he gets excited about sports games. I love how he's willing to learn to fix stuff on his own. I love that he has opinions about how we decorate and what Tenley wears and what candle scents we choose. I love his partnership as we navigate life together. He is a good man and I'm so, so grateful for our marriage. I love you, Mister. 

Happy birthday to my people! My life is full & happy because ya'll give me courage, hope and so much love. Thank you. 

Pictures taken on the Alpine Loop >> October 20, 2014.

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