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Nearly half a million babies (1 in 10) are born premature in the US each year which is higher than that of most other developed nations. This is the journeys of our first born son, Finnegan, who was born 14 weeks early and weighed only 1 pound 15 ounces at birth. Of our daugher, Korrigan, who was born a healthy 7 pounds, 7 ounces at 37 weeks. And of our second son, MacKeegan, who was also born at 37 weeks at a whopping 8 pounds, 13 ounces. Our continued adventures reminds us daily how good God is.

Thursday, April 18

One year ago...

One year ago today, I took a giant step for our family, left my stay-at-home mom days behind and started a new job. Can it really be a full year?!?! Wow. Overall, it has been the best decision for our family. Finn and Korri love going to and thrive at daycare. They are exposed to things on a daily basis that I just wouldn't have been able to or wouldn't have taken the time to do with them. Example: Finn and I were doing his "homework" last night which consisted of coloring 6 animals 6 distinct colors each and then writing the name of the color at the top of the page. He did an amazing job at it and surprised the heck out of me (that he stuck with it and could very crudely write the names!). I don't think he would have that ability yet without daycare (or certainly a preschool setting).

Also, they are LOVED at daycare. This was a huge concern for me that they would go to a center and just be another kid in a sea of kids...but they aren't. Korri has truly loved each of her teachers and her current teacher, Ashley, brushes and styles her hair every day, regardless if we already did...because Korri loves her to do it! Serious, if I were in charge of 10+ other kids (there is always an aide in the room, too), I would NOT take the time to do that! Korri snuggles on her lap every morning, too. Finn is older, so it is different but when he walks in his room, all the kids are SO excited to see him and yell, "Finnegan's here!" or some variation. I feel like Finn's teacher pays attention to each child individually and can tell us every night exactly what he did and how he reacted, etc throughout the day (heck, I can't do that with my own two kids!).

Financially, we now have some breathing room, which we did NOT before I started work. Daycare is SO expensive, though, that I don't know how some families do it! I think being able to relax about the finances a little has taken some pressure off of Jim, too, who used to be the only bread winner...which makes for a more relaxed daddy and husband, which we all love.

Professionally, I LOVE being in charge of projects and meeting deadlines and working with people toward a common goal. I love interacting with adults throughout the day, although, it has taken me almost this entire year to develop friends at work (since I'm a contractor, they kind of tucked me in a corner by myself!). I like having the opportunity to stretch my brain and give it a work out. Yesterday, I thought it was going to explode, though, so maybe not quite that much! I like the sense of accomplishment on a daily basis and also when a project is complete, mainly, because of the work I did on it. While I'm not doing marketing at this job, the strategy and planning is the part I loved about marketing, so it is a good fit.

Personally, I REALLY miss staying home with my kids. I miss going to play dates and making their myriad of appointments whenever it worked best for nap schedule instead of Jim's schedule OR really early or really late so I can take the least amount of time off from work. I miss having lazy mornings and pajama days, going to Choo Choo Bob's, the Children's Museum, the park, swimming pools, being able to go places with Jim when he is traveling, going for long walks, making 'moot 'moothies every afternoon, planning and making HEALTHY meals (because they take longer), going to Target in the middle of the day when they aren't nearly as busy, etc. The list goes on and on. I get over this sadness quickly when Finn pushes Korri off the couch and she slaps him in the face...but it is still there in my heart.

It is all about compromise, I guess. And at the end of the day, our family is healthy, happy and stable. I can't ask for more than that and know what a lucky girl I am. Here's to seeing what the next year brings...

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