Tuesday, December 11, 2012

One Blessed Momma~ Tuesdays with Taryn

This week is busy busy. Today is my stepson's 14th birthday. My daughter will be 10 two days from now and I find myself trying to pull back a little, to find balance because life seems to be zipping by- especially this month and the rest of this year.
It seems like it was only yesterday that I moved here, eager to begin my new life with the man I now call my husband, and in that move, I also became a step-mom to a little 2 1/2 year old boy with a big smile and a quiet disposition. He loved his "Doodle Doo" (as he couldn't pronounce Scooby-Doo) and because he also couldn't pronounce my name, he took to calling me "Yoohoo." It's a label I will take with me till my dying day. He STILL calls me Yoohoo and in some ways, I hope he always does.

I can hardly imagine that he's nearly an adult....already. It doesn't seem possible, but here we are, standing at that precipice, knowing we're going to have to let him take flight one of these days. I miss my little man who would fall asleep in my lap or on the couch beside me, and sometimes even under the coffee table. I still remember the fights over lunch and the grumpy refusals at nap time until he wore himself down. I remember changing bedsheets every morning as we struggled to learn to bed-training and rocking his feverish body back to sleep when he was sick or after he awoke from a nightmare and singing to him low and sweet.

I remember many a night sitting at the kitchen table helping him learn his letters and words in kindergarten and the thrill I feel that all the reading I did with him when he was little has turned him into the avid reader he is nowadays. (I know for a fact that my hubby didn't spend a lot of time reading with him and from what my stepson has told me, his mom hardly kept children's books at her house for him)...He currently reads at an adult level in 8th grade and he's already read all the Harry Potter books, The Hobbit and Lord of the Rings books. He loves Christopher Paolini's Inheritance series, Naomi Novik's Temeraire series and Brian Jacques' Redwall series.

I've said it for years now, but I'll say it again~ He might not have been mine by birth, but he is mine by heart and I love him dearly. 
And then we have my daughter. Ten years have never been so long and so short at the same time. She's my precious gift, my brown-eyed girl, who looks so much like her father, there's no way he can deny her and as far as I'm concerned, she's one of the prettiest things I've ever seen on the planet (but then I'm biased.)

Pregnancy wasn't the highlight of my life- had a lot of nausea, etc, but the resulting bundle of bouncing baby girl was my reward. She's spunky and sharp as a tack. She excels in school and loves it (a blessing). She works hard, and also loves to read, but then why wouldn't she? The hours of reading I've put in for both the kids isn't even a drop in the bucket, from There's a Monster at the End of This Book to Turtle Time and The Story of May, my 10 year old 4th grader reads at a 6th, nearly 7th grade level.

Currently she's reading one of the Harry Potter books for her AR (Accelerated Reading) at school. Some of her favorites are the Ramona Quimby, Ivy & Bean, The Magic Half and The Spelling B series and a couple of her most recent favorites were Karen Kepplewhite is the World's Best Kisser and Dancing Shoes. She's getting Ballet Shoes in her stocking this year (The book, not the shoes. The one mentioned in You've Got Mail). I started her early though on classics like A Little Princess, Anne of Green Gables and The Secret Garden.

I'm sure I'm forgetting some of her other favorites, but these are ones that I believe have shaped her as a reader. (If only for the reason that she has had me reread them to her, if she hasn't reread them on her own.)

She's a lazy bones on school mornings, but on weekends, her crooked sleepy smile brings me pure joy and even though she tried to smother me with love sometimes, I wouldn't trade her for anything. She's artistic and loves music, has a real stubborn streak (though I'm torn who she gets that from- me or Daddy). Her stubbornness though isn't always a bad thing- she's braver and more outgoing than I ever was growing up. She auditioned for Chorus and got in and she's also in the Gifted and Talented program at school, too.

I'm one blessed Momma to have two wonderful babies.

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