Abundance, Gratitude, Life as Gift

This year has not been easy.

Every moment is packed with more than I can do (school! meals! chauffeur! high schooler! baby! toddler! writing!). Every corner of our home is packed and used for multiple purposes (kitchen: food prep, mail station, delivery center. Dining room: food consumption, school, craft table, office, clothes folding. Living room: morning coffee, office, baby play wonderland, kids' computer center. Family room: entertainment, school work area, partial library, preschool supplies, music and art. etc.). Every corner of my mind is packed with things I desperately don't want to forget. From order forms to rare quiet moments snuggling our newest bit of abundance.

Rather than seeing life as overwhelming, draining, exhausting, I'm striving to see the fullness of every corner as abundance. Life is gift. These children are gift. And today we celebrate our newest, smallest gift. I realized in writing this that today is my first time mentioning him here. I'm not sure how a year slipped by, but it has, and I will remedy that now by unveiling his journal nickname (since all my babies have nicknames). He is and will forever be: Awesomesauce.

And what an awesome year it has been. Little Awesomesauce has been the true Tagalong Baby, going with us to Kentucky and Pittsburgh and Milwaukee and New York City. I was nursing him when my agent called with news of my first book contract and he helped inspire my second book. Yet despite clutching to every moment in an attempt to preserve it forever, an entire year has passed. I'm not sure where it went. But a few of those places:

Brand new and already smiling

Hotel Poolside in Pittsburgh!

Playing Hide-n-Seek?

At MOMA in NYC!

Another museum!

And a castle!

 Happy birthday, my darling, always-smiling boy. You are the sauce that makes everything awesome.

The awesomest sauce of all!