This Beautiful Life

I can't begin to express to you how much your support on my "PPD coming out party" post have meant to me.  It's unbelievably encouraging to know I'm not alone, and now you know that you aren't either.  I've received an inbox full of personal emails as well, from women who wanted to share their experience, offer their advice, or just leave me a few especially kind words.  THANK YOU, truly, each and every one of you.  Your response has brought tears to my eyes, and hope to my heart. I found this quote on Pinterest a while back.  I wish I knew who the author was so I could credit him or her.  But I printed it up in Photoshop to display here at home.  I just like the reminder.  I wanted to share it here today, because I thought it might hit home with all of you who have emailed me recently and left comments on my post about ppd.  It's not meant to make you (or me) feel guilty for feeling the way we do!  It's just meant to sort of sum up where we are (or at least where I am right now).

And, well, this is pretty much where I am.  Not forever, mind you, but for now.  And that's okay.  Every tomorrow will be a little easier, right?

Also make sure you check out Emily's beautiful post on how hard it is to raise four kids.  I read it this morning, nodded my head in agreement with every word, and then wept again (a common occurrence these days).

My sister sent me this book a while back, and I'm enjoying reading through it a little bit at a time.  Some of you might find it helpful when the dog is howling and the baby is crying and the other two kids are fighting you just want to pull your hair out for whatever reason.  The great thing about it is that it's divided into very short chapters, because the author knew that we'd only have short bursts of time to read it anyway, before one of the kids floods the bathroom trying to "wash the floor".  (True story from my week.)

Care to share your favorite quotes that have helped you get through your most challenging times?  I'd sure love to read them, and someone else may, too!

the five on friday project

So I decided to do something a bit different around here, and have a little fun on Fridays.  I'm starting off with Five Things I'm Grateful For this week, but next week it might be five things to make or do with your kids.... five things that make me laugh... five pieces of baby gear that I'd love to recommend... five random facts about me...  five cool websites I've come across, or, if you're really lucky, five knock-knock jokes from Parker.  ;) You're welcome to join me!  I'd love to have some company, read your Five on Friday, and get to know you a little more too.  If you decide to play along, simply link us up in the comment section below!

FIVE ON FRIDAY  |  Grateful

1 |  I'm grateful for the rain we've had this week. Every. Single. Day.  The rain cools the Gulf waters down, and in terms of hurricanes, Warm Gulf of Mexico = Bad.  Cold Gulf of Mexico = Good.  Yay for rain!!

2 |  Grateful for a clean desk this morning.  Puts me in such a peaceful, productive mood.  I'm uncluttering for the next few weeks, in preparation for a busy fall photography season, and to purge some of the everyday things I've let back up over the summer.  Two bags of clothing were dropped off this morning, I have a clear desk on which to work, and I opened the door to a clean, pared-down closet with my all clothes organized by color.  Ahhh.  (No laughing, please.  Organization makes me happy beyond belief.)

3 |  I'm grateful for snuggly kids.  Parker and Lila have been sleeping in Parker's trundle bed this week (their choice) all cuddled up to each other as sweet as can be.  Well, Parker and Lila, plus 2 blankies and about 6 stuffed animals/dolls.  It's crowded in there but they love it.  My heart swells every night when I go check on them.

4 |  Grateful for this album.  The kids watched "It's the Great Pumpkin, Charlie Brown" the other night, and then chose this CD to fall asleep to.  And thank goodness.  I was getting tired of hearing the Veggie Tales over the monitor.  I could listen to Vince Guaraldi forever.

5 |  Grateful for our home.  So many people in Tampa Bay have lost their homes in the past few years, and even though my husband's industry (mortgages/finance) has suffered in a major way, we're still okay.  Our house is pretty tiny (it was our "starter home" almost 10 years ago), and we're crowded, yes.  But it's charming.  Full of memories, full of little quirks.  It's OURS.  It's where we brought our babies after they were born, where they've woken up every morning for their entire lives, our little space where we rest and work and play.  Where we can lie on a blanket in the backyard, under the palm trees and the blue sky.  And I'm grateful for it.

stacey woods photo

Yep, it's an iPhone photo today.  I think I'll finally start that 365/Grateful iPhone project I've been meaning to begin.  Can't wait to see your Five on Friday lists!!