Celebrating our Gifts | Where The Boys Are, A Memory Keeping Revolution

The first day of March. How did that happen?

I always think that next month will be better. That right around the corner is the slow down. That soon I won't be chasing the checked boxes. That such a thing as caught up exists. Then, one day, I admitted to myself that unless I create a catalyst of change I will continue cycling through this same tape. 

So, this year I've invited the word "space" into my life and am working on living my life with this intention. I have stopped chasing the checked boxes and instead am chasing the slow down.

There are kinks to be worked out in this paradigm shift and casualties of saying yes to movie night with the boys and no to sitting at the computer.

So, I'm not going to come into this space and rattle off how busy I was last month and just didn't have time for this post. Instead of perpetuating the glorification of busy I'm going to tell it to you straight. 

I said yes more than no to my boys. I said no more than yes to my list. I gave power to their whims and took power from the checked boxes. I made the choice to let this post fall off my list.  

And I think that by doing so I see more clearly. I see the precious gifts I have been given. I do not begrudge the repetitive and instead give only gratitude. The kinks will be worked out as each task settles into its appropriate priority rank. Space will be created and stories will continue to be told. 

This space is special. We come together in this space to celebrate our gifts. And that is something that I will always say yes to. 

Welcome to our February collaborative post, better late than never, right? We hope that sharing our story inspires you to share yours. 

Here we go......

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This week you told me, "Mom when the sun come again?"

I never thought that you would think about it...because you love to play in the snow.  But lately we have had to stay inside all the time, temperatures have been very low even to go outside and play in the snow. The next day we were on our way to school and that morning we had glorious sunshine...

You: "Mom, Mom the sun is here!!!...finally." 

My sweet boy I'm with you waiting for loooong days filled with sun. - Antonieta Esis

Two years ago he lived inside his own mind, hardly able to communicate beyond his beautiful big brown eyes and perfectly dimpled smile.  But something fierce and independent has exploded as his world became unlocked... and now, he's marching in song to his very own made-up battle cry.  - Amy Bernard

Your wild, cacophonous world slows for nothing. Even in rare moments of perceived stillness, I know you’re saving a city, blasting into space, captaining a ship, entering a fierce battle. And without walloping limbs and pirate bellows, I can feel your swirling energy as you lean forward, marinate in the images.  

You might have a PhD in Lego adventures. - Jen Lucas

Lil' swimmer, oh how far you have come. A level 1 swimmer for so long, and now you are in meets, mastering breaststroke, flip turns, and butterfly. There is such a calm about your swimming. An ease that the other 8 and under swimmers don't have, even if they are faster. Something about they way you swim says that you are going the distance, like a marathon runner. The other day, you arrived at practice and were told you needed to swim 50 laps for a fundraiser. After overcoming some initial surprise, you took the challenge head on, doing all 50 (the full half mile) in one session. You left practice so confident, so determined, so calm. It is always hard to motivate at 4:45 in the afternoon to leave for the Y two times a week as the sun is setting. Upon reflection, this is why we need to keep going:  it is strengthening a lot more than your strokes. It is molding you into one self-assured lil' guy. I am so proud. - Cate Wnek

Being the middle child, you have to put up with a lot....your little brother relies on you and has you running around after him whilst your big brother is always competing with you.  He dared you to climb the tree, instead you were just being calm whilst he loved to show you 'how it should be done' behind you!  - Sarah Roberts

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I love that ya'll love to explore. And that Wilder always finds treasures on our little adventures. Sticks (or swords), rocks, mammoth pine cones, or even flowers. We can be deep in the woods, and you're looking everywhere for a picnic table so that you can eat a snack. You're one of a kind, Wilder. - Amanda Caves

It was just a silly chicken, but you conquered your fear. - Michelle L Morris

"Hey Mom, take a picture. This can be for our hundred days of Garrett."

I'll admit, you've prompted me more than I've prompted you on our project for your 10th birthday but I'm thrilled its worked out this way. YOU are directing the stories you want to be told and that will make this such a treasure at the end of the year. 

One hundred photographs and stories celebrating exactly who you are at ten years old. What a way to celebrate a decade of life. 

They say daddies are good at building confidence. I find myself holding back the constant belting of the words "Be careful!", or "Not that high!", or "Ok that's far enough, it's time to come back down". All the while knowing you SHOULD climb higher, you SHOULD go faster, you SHOULD be fearless. You should, in fact, do all those crazy things your daddy constantly applauds you for. I just need to remember it. - Janielle Granstaff

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I’m not sure when it happened.  But somehow along the way, you found your confidence in the pool and went from cautious and wanting to quit, to loving swimming.  You love the freedom that your teacher gives you to bob up and down at the end while you wait for your turn.  You excitedly tell me after class how you can touch the bottom of the pool with your fins and count down the days until the next week.  I’m so proud of you for pushing past this fear and look forward to all the fun family swim days in our future. - Heather Reagan

This year you started year one and have been doing and saying so many ‘grown up’ things. That baby phase seems to have quickly disappeared. But it’s moments like these that I treasure so dearly.  - Anna Bein

This photo is the perfect record of your personalities right now. Littlest: earnest sweet smile. Middlest: forced, restrained face. Biggest: clowing. Not the “perfect” shot that I wanted. But in the grand scheme of life, honest photos trump perfect photos. - Linda Barber