Monday, June 23, 2014

Mother's Day and Father's Day

Well, I sat down to write about Margot's birthday, but took one look at my June pictures and realized I forgot to post about Father's Day!  Then it occurred to me that I never wrote a post about Mother's Day either, so I'm just going to cover both of those in one fell swoop, mkay? 

Mother's Day: once again I tried to drown out the "I want, I need, I deserve great things" noise, like I did last year, by organizing a Mother's Day Swag Bag Stuffing Party at my house.  I wasn't sure I really wanted to do it this year, but once again, I was inspired by the ladies at Rants From Mommyland and I re-read my post from last year and decided, what the heck.  I can give it a shot and we'll see how it goes. 

Sure enough, I was surprised by the turn out and the responses from my amazing friends and family.  This year, we put together 10 bags with TONS of wonderful things for the women at the Crisis Center along with pillow cases full of toys and goodies for the kids there, too.  Friends and family were dropping off donations at work, at the house, and sending money from all kinds of places, which was awesome!  We had enough swag to fill the bags that I was able to take all of the cash donations and add a $20 Target gift card to each bag.  Friends were not only donating items and money, but time as well - I had a Mary Kay consultant donate lotions, gift cards, and free makeovers for the mamas at the shelter!  I also wrote a letter to Momastery and they donated 10 paper back copies of Carry On, Warrior for FREE!!!  I was thrilled. 

Unfortunately, I didn't take many pictures of our awesome project, but here's one important one:

That's my own mama and my own daughter filling bags together.  It melts my heart.  Mom mentioned what a great lesson this was for Sylvia and I'm so glad I was able to spend time with them to put the bags together (my student teacher, Courtney, also came to help and she was an added blessing to our party)!  Sylvia really enjoyed filling the bags again this year and for one blessed day she didn't whine about wanting something.  Totally worth it!  We boxed them up and my contact at the Crisis Center picked them up that week. 

I woke up on Mother's Day morning and felt like my job had been done and that my gifts were waiting for me upstairs in their beds.  Sylvia and I spent the day with her grandmothers and great Aunt, touring the Princess Diana exhibit at the Cincinnati Museum Center while Margot hung out with Daddy and met us all for lunch.  It was a wonderful day filled with love and laughs, and yes, real gifts that were much more than I expected or hoped for.  I feel like I'm starting to get the hang of this Mother's Day business.  I'm already excited about next year!

Okay!  On to Father's Day.  Sylvain spent weeks trying to figure out what everyone's "favorite thing" was in our family.  He wanted to turn Father's Day into "Family Day" and he wanted each of us to have one favorite thing to do (or to eat or to see or whatever).  For the girls, it was easy.  They love the zoo.  When he asked Sylvia what her favorite thing to do was, she said, "Go to the zoo!" and when Margot heard the word "zoo" she squealed with delight.  My favorite thing to do is eat breakfast and his favorite thing to do is drink beer, so our day was settled: big breakfast at home, trip to the zoo, big lunch out at a restaurant with good beer.  He also got to watch a soccer game uninterrupted and we had dinner at my Dad's house, and EVERYONE loves going to Grandpa's house.  It really was a great day and for this one I have pictures to prove it!

I framed this as part of his present.  Thanks, Pinterest!

It was a beautiful day, and even a little chilly in the morning!

He found that hat at Target and loved it, so it found it's way home for Father's Day.

There's Tessa and her babies!  She and I have babies at the same time.  The one on the left is only seven weeks old!


She asks to have her picture taken now.  Sheesh.

More kisses for Papa!

Train ride!




Not pictured: the popcorn and cotton candy.
I wish I had enough sense to take my camera out to Dad's house.  The girls absolutely LOVE swinging in Grandpa's back yard and chasing cats around the garage.  One thing is clear and certain: we are SURROUNDED by amazing men who are shining examples of what a Father should be.  Sylvain is the world's greatest Daddy every day.  Every. Day.  He is present.  He is committed.  He is smart and kind and caring and he is teaching our girls how to grow up strong and brave.  He is everything a good father should be and I don't know how he does it, or where he learned to do it, but I'm so glad he does it every day and I'm glad he chose to do this life and grow this family with ME!   

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