random good things

We saw a grown up movie over the weekend.  Like at the theater.

Tollie wore the same shirt four days in a row, a neon green swimming top.  It got washed once during that time.

The boys played nicely together, a game around a wooden block city.  The garbage truck accidentally hit and killed the mayor, who had actually already been shot and killed not long ago, on Presidents Day.  I overheard Tucker tell Tollie that it'd be okay, that the mayor would go to extra heaven.  I interrupted to ask for clarification.  Well, when you die in heaven, you get to go on to the next one.  It’s even better. 

At Andy's birthday lunch with family, Tollie ate the slice on his plate, and then stretched his fork toward the middle of the table and straight into the remaining cake.  I guess everything is fair game when you're four.

Andy texted from work recently about feeling excited to meet this baby, about this time being different.  I hadn't given it much thought, but he's right:  The minute we were discharged with Tucker we drove directly to the lab at Children's hospital, watched them prick his heel, and settled in for a weeklong wait, wondering if he would die.  With Tols it was a different kind of waiting.  Early on we learned he was well, but as he was on his way into this world his sister was on her way out.  Our joy was mixed with tremendous sadness.  Things are good this time, and it feels like they may only get better.

We spent part of one weekend afternoon at the park.  Tollie wore his swim shirt, and none of the boys wore a coat.

The four of us ended up on the couch at one point, watching Superbowl commercials.  Tollie commented about how special it was for all of us to be sitting down together.  He's right, that's definitely a rare occurrence.

That morning Andy and I sat on the same couch and watched three uninterrupted episodes of something mindless on Netflix.  I'm not sure that's ever happened before.

Earlier in the week Tuck had asked for the ingredients to make a treat for Andy, a white chocolate Chex mix he'd discovered at Christmas.  He took some of the mixture to his grandparents, who asked about how he made it.
He said we just mixed a bunch of random good things.
Kind of like the past few days.



I feel like Tolliver may be known, mostly, for two things: the very best shade of red hair there ever was, and waking up way too freaking early every day.  Let’s talk about his hair.


his birthday

His birthday, my wish: to wake up and share wonder and face terror and see growth side by side, to practice parenting and patience and faith as a team, to make out and mess up together for many, many more years.


four year old fashionista

In December Tolliver adopted a wake up and get dressed routine, shorts and a t-shirt, all day every day.  Until we have to leave the house -- and then, invariably, a bit of resistance to putting on pants.

At bedtime earlier this week, ready to wind down after a bath, he was not at all interested in pajamas.  He chose dress pants instead, at least one size too small, with a bow tie and glasses.  I am trying to understand.
Tollie has strong opinions about what he wears, and I am not interested in daily battles over his wardrobe.  I know his preferences are not worthy of a clinical label.  My real objection stems less from things like the shorts themselves, but more from the idea that he might be cold.  Or that other parents are judging me.

He's not cold.
He's also not exactly the heart of fashion.
But he is happy.



Sometimes I stop long enough to remember the days I spent praying for the things I have now.


becoming that person

He is likely less than two decades away from his future as a deep sea diver.  Or a dive bar pianist.
Or an astronaut or an economist or all of the above.

I feel like it's part of our job to help him figure out who he is and to become that person.
I do fear his ideas are like candle flames, and I don't want a pair of careless fingers to come along and pinch them out, I don't want his curious spirit to be crushed one bit.

There are enough things to weigh a person down, gravity and reality and dive weights, if that's the direction he goes.  We are grateful for all of the good people who are helping him find out who he is, and encouraging him to fly or float or just flourish in general.


life lately, on Instagram

1.  preschool holiday concert - knew all the words, sang not one note
2.  ladies of #inglisprogrodinner via @jferris9674
3.  whiskey punch, pinkies out
4.  progro preggos
5.  silent night, simultaneously beautiful and terrifying #playingwithfire
6.  little John could not be more loved #chesleysdream

7.  project in Poppy's dangerous room - first pocket knife
8.  boning up on human anatomy via @keg256
9.  jump ropes, journals and warm December days
10.  brothering like a boss
11.  books for dinner
12.  the day Ikea just about did us in
13.  one clown shy of a circus
14.  too bad touching things helps them see better #columbusmuseumofart

15.  holiday dinner with friends via @mkstahlohio
16.  family brunch via jen_nack
17.  author event with Gillian Flynn via @mkstahlohio
18.  my first favorite is "friends"
19.  #gillsgirls
20.  nothing beats the grandview cookie jar #johndamon

21.  elementary morning greeter 
22.  four years, four red blooms
23.  past bedtime, but don't dare interrupt
24.  taking the more is more approach to pretend play
25.  below freezing = all the toys out
26.  pretty sure those are T Rex tracks
27.  grant trauma party
28.  remembering her #withfeathers