a birthday, a blue mosque, a baby

our audrey is now three and so full of words and songs and mischief and wondering.  gosh i am amazed by her.  we are so lucky to have her.  for her birthday we got a large trampoline which has been greatly enjoyed by sophie and me (audrey is getting used to it though).

i went back to the states for a month with the girls to soak in the autumn weather and to celebrate my sister-in-law's wedding (ben was able to join us for a week for that occasion).  we went to the library and the park as much as we could squeeze into our time.  oh, and ate at culvers.

homeschooling has taken a drastic turn and it started while we were in the states for that month.  i have resolved to letting things go, so to speak. i cringe when i say that because i think about all of the money i spent on books and curriculum.  but going to parks and reading to her are now at the core.  that, along with time and space for her to play and do things she enjoys doing (which now involves coloring and playing legos).  so far, i think we'll continue on for the rest of the year like this.

i think my husband is super awesome.  there's a place i feel like i've come to where it just feels more and more solid and delightful in our marriage.  we've had hard conversations and there are days/weeks where he is uber busy.  but more than anything, i'm so glad he's my partner!

i've got a new tattoo.  and i'm designing my next one.

my beautiful mom is visiting with us until mid-january and i'm so thrilled with her presence here.  she's actually on her way to see my sister in south korea right now for a few weeks before returning here. 

audrey would rather play with her sister at home then go to nursery school most days.  and i really don't fight her on this.  i kind of miss being more involved with her school, but it has been pretty amazing to see her and sophia become friends and playmates.  sure, they fight, but that's normal stuff.

we took a short trip to istanbul last week and enjoyed some of the major sites there.  ben and i took turns with nasty head colds, so we did have to limit our time out and about (which we do anyway with two young kiddos).  it was fun to spend that time with mom too.  we found a hotel serving up some american thanksgiving fixings, so that was a treat to have a thanksgiving dinner in turkey (the irony of it all)!

now we are gearing up for an exciting trip to sydeny, australia and then over to new zealand!  hoping for good health and safe travels.  we will return, very jet-lagged, to doha a few days before christmas! 

and that brings me to the last "b":  baby!  We remember the Salvation of the World came as a baby:

Silent night, Holy night
All is calm, all is bright
Round yon virgin, mother and child
Holy infant, tender and mild
Sleep in heavenly peace,
Sleep in heavenly peace.

been awhile

well if a blog could talk, this one would say, "oh, there you are!  i thought you'd forgotten all about me."  but that's nonsense because i haven't forgotten all about this little blog.

the fact is, i'm not sure what to do with this here blog and that's been on my mind over the past few months.  i'm a bit confused all of a sudden as to why this blog is out there in the world of everything cyber and not down in some worn pages tucked inside a good-loved journal. so i've been asking myself that question:  why, blog?  why do this THIS way?

it all started out to write down these memories of our children as we observe how they grow and change.  i want to have proof that time didn't just up and run away with their childhoods.  i want to unpack the challenges of motherhood in words.  i want to find myself and write about how i am changing in this uncertain, yet beautiful season of young motherhood. i want to remember them and the ordinary days of their childhood.  i want them to (possibly) read these sentiments as adults and learn about me as their mother and me as a person and how i saw them.  because not only do i remark on their lives, i discover more about myself.  i vent.  i'm emotional.  i am {real}.

but does everyone need to know this?  is it best just left unseen?

for quite some time, i had been thinking about how to make this wee blog into something bigger.  grander.  attractive.  time consuming.  i wanted to be on the big stage of blogs, because of course, there aren't enough blogs out there for people to read...  (ha!)  but i'm not sure of all that now.  i'm not the next anne lamott--whom i love (that takes a lot of miraculous-ordinary living and maturity).  i like writing and experimenting with our words and discovering these precious ones of mine through prose.  and i would imagine that others liked that too.  that it would be heavy-traffic-worthy stuff.  but it's not.  and that's okay.  i don't want to promote.  what i feel is very personal and really only applicable to such a small group of us, and it's probably not very interesting to most.

but to write often is a good exercise  and perhaps the motivation comes from knowing that i'm writing in this forum and it does feel kind of good hitting that "publish" button as opposed to just closing the hard, dulled cover of a journal.  it's in a way, accountability. it's in a way, allowing myself to be exposed and to be known; even if just in these "pages".  it's uninhibited self-love and self-discovery.  it's allowing me to see my children and think about them in words.

if you blog, have you had these similar wonderings?  how have you motivated yourself to continue?  do you strive for recognition?