March 2015 archive

Conversations with Caleb

By Natalie

After Caleb gets off the bus from school we cut across the yard chit chatting about the weather, and step inside the house. He and I have an afternoon routine. He quickly sheds his shoes once inside, as he peers over at the kitchen table where there’s a snack I’ve prepared for him. But before he can grab a bite, I flip him around, and say “Gimme hugs.” to which he quickly responds. Maybe he’s alright with it, maybe he’s trying to get his snack out of it. Either way is fine by me.

I sit across from him while he eats his snack eager to hear about his day, and luckily for me he’s usually up for chatting. Our conversations go a little like this…

  • Caleb: Where’s Ryder?
  • Me: At school
  • Caleb: Where’s mommy?
  • Me: She’s working
  • Caleb: Where’s daddy?
  • Me: He’s working too
  • Caleb: Playing soccer?
  • Me: Yep
  • Caleb: Where’s Brandon?
  • Me: He’s at work
  • Caleb: Where’s Brandon’s daddy?
  • Me: Probably working too
  • Caleb: Where’s Bingley?
  • Me: He’s sleeping in his bed
  • Caleb: Where are you?
  • Me: I’m at work!
  • Caleb: *Eyes wide, then giggles* No you’re not! You’re at home!

That boy, he’s right. I’m right at home.

After he finishes his snack, and we’ve decided that everyone is where they usually are in the afternoons we determine if it’s any sort of decent weather. And if it is we head outside to play.

  • Caleb: Play soccer with me?
  • Me: Always

I stand by the gate, while he dribbles the ball. And I can tell you I’m so embarassed to play goalie with him, because this kid is good. Nearly never misses a shot. Once he’s bored of me trying he yells out “Get me!” and I come after him so we can dribble the soccer ball back and forth through the grass.

It’s a pretty sweet gig yeah? Being a Nanny.

Today I sat on the playroom floor, and I started reading the pout pout fish to Ryder, and Grant. He’s a pout pout fish with a pout pout face, and he spreads the dreary wearies all over the place. It’s one of those repetitive books, with the same lines every other page to teach kids recognition. So this pout pout fish, every other page he goes Blub.. Bluub.. Bluuuuuub. And you better believe I exaggerate those Blubs. Giving out belly tickles to Ryder, then Grant, then Ryder again. And they eat it up those boys.

Mr. Fish says to clam I’m a pout pout fish with a pout pout face, and I spread the dreary wearies all over the place. Then their sweet little faces get real expectant because they know what’s coming. Belly tickles with every Blub.. Bluuub.. Bluuuuuub.

Sillies, and tickles, and smiles, and giggles. Playgrounds, and swings, and soccer, and wriggles. Who would have known all those things make me feel right at home.


On Marrying Young

By Natalie

imageI’m not sure I would reccomend marrying young to just anyone. Because it’s definitely not for everyone. It’s not because I regret marrying at nineteen by any means, I just think that we are a rare commodity. I tell people I’m married and their eyebrows go up. “Oh Newlywed huh.” They’ll say. To which I respond. “Actually coming up on four years.” Then their eyes pop, and the jaws literally drop in disbelief. It’s pretty fun to watch. There are so many great benefits to marrying young. For us specifically it’s been an adventure. A bit of a financial roller coaster at first, in which Brandon was working freelance, and we were eating a whole lotta hot dogs for dinner. But then we just kept moving forward. And we’ve grown into responsible tax paying adults together. You see we hopped in the same car, and kept on the same track with the same goal. That’s the benefit to marrying young. To begin adulthood with similar expectations and share the same end goal, enjoying life all along the way.

But Brandon was not your average twenty-one year old guy. And I was no regular nineteen year old girl.

In addition to being madly in love with a man of God, this is why I was ready…

I can’t tell you that I had no childhood. Because I did learn how to ride a bike. Sort of… with training wheels. Ok, you got me. I can’t really ride a bike or swim. Dad gave me a grand total of like two lessons, and I never quite mastered either of those. I did however manage to master climbing the overgrown holly tree in our backyard. I made mud pies by the deck when my mom wasn’t looking. Scarfed down my easy bake oven creations like they were the best dang brownies I’d ever tasted. I played teacher, and house, and the occasional secretary. Who played secretary? Clipboards and all? I had big dreams guys.

So yes, I had a childhood. I remember it being whimsical, and I remember it being fun. But once I hit about eighth grade, I needed to learn to fend for myself. My sisters were working, and mom was working. They weren’t always around to be sure I finished all my homework, or ate my vegetables. Well… I shouldn’t pretend like I was all on my own. Nem definitely completed a few science fair projects for me. And Nadir definitely helped me get through some books I needed to write reports on. But once they moved out I was left making my own dinners, and caring for myself until mom got home late from work. Being raised in a single parent home leaves you fending for yourself… a lot. This is in no way to say that my mom should have been there. Cause guess what? Dad should have been a better man, and been there. Sometimes I wonder if I should write stuff like that and then I decided that I own my stories. I hope people understand that if you want to be spoken of highly, maybe you should treat people better. They shouldn’t have to tiptoe around your words or actions. You should have acted better. Thought about the venom in your words before you spoke them.

I am in no way saying that my mother could have done better. She did perfect. I am who I am today because I had to figure things out for myself. I didn’t have parents to fall back on or mooch off of. I learned to make my own decisions. My own meals. Suffer the consequences of not completing my homework when no one made me do it the night before. Now I realize how many things must have been on my mother’s mind. She wasn’t worried about holding my hand while I finished my algebra. She was too busy figuring out how to put food on the table, and pay rent. She trusted me to be her helper, and fend for myself in the areas I was capable. I can’t wait to have my own children and be faced with the challenges she was able to face alone. How much stronger will she seem to me then when I have Brandon by my side?

If you don’t believe in prayer you haven’t met my family. You haven’t met my sisters, and our husbands that my mom prayed for since we were small. That we would love, and care for husbands who were good men, ones who sought satisfaction in their own wives, and never needed to look any further. It’s amazing to think that my mom prayed for Brandon before I could make logical decisions. Do you realize the importance of that? As a product of her prayer I can tell you I’m eternally grateful. Thanks mom. It worked.

Weekend Update

By Natalie

This fabulous piece of art was completed last week, and it’s even better than I imagined. When making your own furniture you experience this moment of fear once you have all your supplies. And you think “Hmm.. is this really going to come out the way I want it to?”

Lucky for us, it always has! You can find the craft desk B and his dad made for me here. Brandon had this genius idea to make a table with wood flooring, and I’ve been wanting to make something with pipe. So we merged our two ideas, and voila! We ended up with this glorious creation!image

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In other Poe news…

imageI got some much needed quality friend time with Chloe this past weekend. She conveniently dropped her pup off for some gun dog training in Georgia, and on her way back home, she stayed with us for the weekend. All weekend I had some girl time. Which you never realize you need, until you’ve had it. I could tell you all about our time together, but I usually find it difficult to put Friendship into words. There’s a certain comfort I feel when I am in the presence of an old friend. A comfort where I can be silly, and honest, and true to myself. Where we can spend our time together reminiscing on events past, and speak our own language of care to each other. I’ll spare you the girly details that Brandon was unable to escape, and tell it to you simply. We basically shopped, and crafted our little hearts out all weekend. That’s right, apparently when people come visit they bring along their latest diy project, cause they know I’ll be down. A friend who can be by my side happily while I sew, is a good friend.

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imageimageIt’s 80 degrees in Charlotte, can you believe it? I started swinging Grant in the backyard baby swing today, when I caught a glimpse of a line of ants. They were bustling with life, carrying whatever crumbs they’d found back to their ant hill. Grant smiled with every forward swing as his cheeks caught a little vitamin D. During this beautiful time of year that breathes life into the air, I figured why not invite a little bit of spring into our home? Greenery in the home is a good thing friends. My plants are adoring this sunshine, arching themselves toward the light, spreading their leaves wide to bask in it’s magnificence.

If you remember this post then you know that I have succesfully pieced together my little indoor potted garden. Quite a transformation right?

Here’s a closer look at some of my little green guys. image

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Don’t they just make you happy? Inspiring life, and growth with their vibrant green hue. Now you want to go get yourself some house plants. Don’t you?

And to take us out Bingley wanted to say that he had a pretty good weekend too.image

Happy March Everyone!image

My Future Little Ones…

By Natalie

imageLately we’ve been talking alot about you tinies. Little things like what names we’ll give to you, and when would be best to bring you into this world. And though it’s still a long way off, these discussions have made my heart more than content. They’ve given me a purpose to better myself, and enjoy a childless marriage while it lasts. Cause once you’re here we’ll be parents forever. We’ve been striving these past almost four years to prepare ourselves to be everything you need. Making a home for you that has love spilling out of the walls, and family written all over it.

What will it be like when we see you for the first time? What will it feel like to have you grow inside me? What will it feel like if I find for some reason that you’re unable to grow inside me? Will your eyes be brown, or will they be green? Will you be born healthy? What if you’re not? What will our marriage look like when you’ve kept us awake at night? What will our home look like after you’ve arrived?

Oh, but you… We’ve waited for you. We’ve learned how to care for one another, how to read one another, so that when you come as this little bundle of joy with no user manual we can figure it out together. As your parents, who have come to figure out so many other blessings and challenges. And you know what I think? I think you’re going to make us more in love with eachother. You’re going to stretch us. You’re going to push us into becoming better people as we have done already in our marriage. You’re going to teach us how to love deeper, and sacrifice more. You’re going to show us the beauty of God’s love through being your parents. Perhaps I need that to be written down here for future reference. When you are crying, and I’m stumped by what may be bothering you. Or a while down the road when we’re no longer your heros, but embarassing parents. Will we be embarassing parents? We’ve asked ourselves that, and convinced ourselves that we certainly would not be.. I wonder if you will one day think differently.

Some pressume you’ll be like your cousins. Spitting up, when we thought for sure there was nothing left to spit up. Exhausting us, and asking us to fall in love with you through your fussiness. I have a feeling they’ll be right. But that’s ok sweet babies. Because you’ll be ours. If I have learned to love all of the little quirks about my husband, and he has learned to love the little quirks about me, we must learn to love all of the little quirks about you. Because with us as your parents, you’re bound to have quirks.

We’re going to break each other, and mold eachother. We’re going to be a family.

Until then tiny ones, all that we do will be in preparation for you.