Well, it's that time of year again. In Washington, the sun just starts to make it's appearance and it's off to school we go (: Shawn is back working late nights and I am back filling out insane amounts of paper work and appointments, from health insurance and yearly check ups to dentists and preschool forms. We have definitely hit September hard.
For our family, this also means birthday time. We celebrated Gavin's 5th and Amanda's 1st, exactly one week apart. So crazy...my first born is getting so old and my baby isn't a baby anymore. With Amanda's candle blown out, I really felt like we were hitting a new phase of life. One without cradles, bottles, rattles and burp clothes. For the most part, the baby stuff has been sold off or given away and we are moving on. It is so bitter sweet and I am sure i will be processing this change for the next year with each new thing Mandy outgrows.
This year, Brayden & Gavin both went to preschool. It is really an interesting phenomenon to me. Brayden, my wild child, with crazy antics and disregard for deocrum, hides behind my leg and quietly enters the classroom with backwards looks and a tentative step. Gavin, my more serene child, with a more contemplative attitude marches forth and only pauses momentarily when i grab his arm to drop a kiss on his cheek. Then marches confidently into the classroom. It's like their personalities make a switch on the school grounds. I will be very interested to see how they both do. It's Bray's first time goin' completely alone into his "own" thing without his brother by his side. I am excited for him! Gavin, I know will love it.
Amanda gets a little more time too. She does nap for some of their time, but we definitely get more one on one with the boys gone. I think she has decided to use it to hone in on her skills of Drama. She has perfected the fit and has quite a nice head to the floor sobbing technique. She is proving to be just as different from the boys as possible. I am not sure how one can have three "opposites" but it seems to be so. I guess I'll have to hit the drawing board once again for parenting techniques...but if i have learned anything with parenting, it's to not expect an easy out, just be grateful when you do catch the breaks!
And so, life is, as always in the parenting world, ever changing. I feel as though God has our family in a state of transition on so many levels right now and I am doing my best to hear his voice and not panic at all the changes and unknown. I am a creature of structure and habit and it is hard for me to wait on things and move into new territory. But I do feel like he is growing me as a wife and a parent. We have cut back on many things and I am working hard to be intentional about adding activites into our lives and not just filling time. It has been good. Hard, but good.
I think the kids are at some key transitional stages too, which is also hard, but good. Daily I look upwards asking God for the patience I need to follow through without blowing a up or self combusting. He has been faithful, for which I am so thankful (as are the kids i am sure...they don't know how much God has protected them from my natrual state of frustration and impatience...i really feel like he has given me the strength to keep calm and steady in all the transition).
So that is what's up with the Ryans. Random September chaos. Fun, good, hard and crazy...but we are making it with God's grace and God's gift of laughter, we are doin' good!