Let Me Not Forget

Watching you by the water, my heart contIMG_0346racts and I feel a deep longing for something I cannot explain. The waves, their steady ebb and flow, fill me with a hopeful nostalgia and a desperate, almost wild, desire to freeze time.
“Stay little…”
My whisper is lost in the wind, never reaching your ears. Already gone. Sinking and disappearing into the sand of time.
I feel full of joy … and despair. You. My heart. Never mine to keep forever.
I watch you squeal with delight and run away in feigned fear as the water reaches your little toes.
“Oh, you are lovely…”
You glisten brighter than the sun, my child.
I watch you in wonder. Happiness floods my soul at the sight of your pure joy. Followed by a searing pain. The sheer weight of it all crushes down on me.
“I won’t remember this…”
The contradiction of emotions brings tears to my eyes as I laugh at your play.
Days upon weeks upon months upon years. Time is the thief of memory.
I force myself back to the present.
“Be in the moment…”
But. First. I try, with all my prayers and might, to capture it. To store it in my heart.
Let me not forget, dear little one, the feel of your little hand in mine…the way you reach for me, so sure that I’ll be there to hold you, to steady you, to be your safe place, your great comfort.
Let me not forget the sweet way you whisper “I love you” … your sureness in our love, your deep confidence in me.
Let me not forget the way you look running toward me, your curls bouncing, your eyes sparkling. You want to be near me. Always.
Let me not forget your kisses. So many. All the time. The overwhelming amount of kisses that you feel the need to give. It’s almost humorous, often annoying, but sweet and sincere nonetheless.
Let me not forget your urgent goodbyes when we part, full of hugs and love and a bit of unease. “I love you and I miss you and I can’t wait to kiss you.” Your goodbyes take time and reassurance, but I love them.
“I love you…”
Let me not forget your songs. All the songs that you sing. Your own versions and words. Melodies sung in the sweetest little voice. Carefree and confident.
Let me not forget how you play. The stories I learn by listening to you talk to “your girls.” The way you tenderly play mommy to your babies. The way you get lost in front of your dollhouse. A whole world of your own.
“I remember…” A faded memory, stored in the back of my heart…my own similar play from long ago…
Oh, sweet child. If I could just remember all of it. All of you. For all time. Let me not forget.

To My Girl, On Her 3rd Birthday

Dear A,

My girl. It’s your birthday. You are three. I can hardly believe it, and yet at the same time I can hardly remember what life was like before you. Isn’t it funny, how it works like that? There are days when I honestly can’t picture us before you. Your personality is big. Your presence is not easily overlooked. It’s hard to imagine our home without you in it. You were a sweet, easy, sleepy, happy baby. At 3, you are a little tougher. These days you aren’t always sure what you want but you ARE always sure what you don’t want. In fact, “don’t” is one of your favorite words right now. “Don’t look at me. Don’t touch me. Don’t look like that with your face.” It’s almost comical, but “don’t laugh” and definitely “don’t talk.” You ask a lot of us. You definitely want to be in charge. But, despite your naturally bossy nature and your general dislike of all the things, your tender heart shines through. You love your people and you always make sure we know it. You have my heart. You always will.


At 3, you love to play. You love “your girls” (your Dora and Sofia toys) and make them talk and sing. You can play quietly for hours. You love Dottie Baby and Betty Baby and you are a good little mommy to them. Bunny and Blankie are still your favorite life comforts. You love to sing and twirl! You LOVE dresses and never want to wear anything that isn’t a dress. “I pick out a pretty dress today, Mommy” you say. And, then you do … you pick out a dress, promptly twirl around the room and then run off to say, “look at me, Daddy.”

From you I’ve learned that things aren’t so complicated. That things are more straightforward. That we don’t have to make things harder than they actually are. That “poopy does hurt and poopy does stink.” Lol. Your words, little girl, your words. You are bright and loving and witty and cute. Your sense of humor is sharp and quick. Your hugs are hard and full of love. You are demanding and bossy and sensitive and silly. Your smile can light up a room … and a heart. If you are having a bad day, you want to make sure that everyone else is to. You are slow to warm up to new people, but loyal and kind to those you call, “my friends.” You are super girly, but never afraid to play rough. You like soccer. You like running. You are sweaty. You are fun. You don’t like boys. You don’t like anything that looks like it might be “too boy.” My girl. You are so, so many things. If I could bottle you up, I would. I love our days together. Just me and you. We quietly pass the time or we go out and about in the world. Either way, I love having you right with me. You are my sidekick and I hope this sweet time with you passes slowly. I’m not ready to let you go. I’m not ready to watch you grow too big, too soon. You are our wildflower. Once you taste freedom, I have the suspicion that you’ll only want more of it. So, for now, stay little. Hold my hand a little longer. Enjoy age 3, with me tagging along.

Baby girl, I wrote the poem below a couple of years ago. It was shortly after you took your very first steps. On your birthday, sweet love, I wanted to share it again. I want you to know and to always remember that you’ll always be enough for me. Just the way you are… you are enough.

One day, when the light falls and the darkness sets in,

You may wonder if you are enough.

You are.

You are always enough.

When kids are mean and the world seems hard,

You may wonder if you are enough.

You are.

You are always enough.

When you doubt yourself, when you doubt your truth,

You may wonder if you are enough.

You are.

You are always enough.

When a boy breaks your heart,

You may wonder why you weren’t enough for him to love.

You were. You are.

You are always enough.

When you feel lonely and don’t quite fit in,

You may wonder if you are enough.

You are.

You are always enough.

When things just aren’t quite right,

When you don’t feel pretty enough or tall enough or smart enough,

Even when you feel let down by life,

Remember that you are enough.

You are loved. You are adored.

I whisper it into the wind,

So that one day it may find you,

My love will always find you.

The beauty inside you,

Radiates from you,

You are SO much.

You are always, always enough.

Love, Your Momma

Kindergarten. It’s Time.

I haven’t been feeling overly sentimental lately. I’ll admit, I can lose myself to the sentimental dark side from time to time, but I’ve been coasting close to “normal” these days. But, today. Wow, today! Today, I packed up a box of baby clothes to consign. Today, A and I watched cows and moo-ed and said hello to each one of them individually and laughed. Today, we received N‘s track assignment for year-around elementary school. We registered him for kindergarten in January and I had all the big feelings and emotions about it … and then, I just kinda let it go. So, even though I was expecting it, seeing his name with the word “kindergarten” and “track” beside of it … it just felt too real. Too soon. Honestly, my first thought was that maybe I could just toss that little postcard in the trash and pretend it wasn’t happening. Out of sight, out of mind. Eeek!

Y’all, head on over to Raleigh Moms Blog to read more!!


More Than Beautiful

Yesterday, my first blog post for Raleigh Moms Blog went up! Whoop! I’ve been excited about joining their team as a contributor. But, I’m also excited to share my words with you here as well….


Excerpt: “A few days ago, A (my 2-year-old) and I were strolling through Target (yes, it’s always Target, right?). She was in a particularly playful mood. I was stealing kisses from her. We were smiling. We were in our own happy world for that particular minute in time. I leaned down and said, “You are SOOO beautiful!” She wrinkled her nose and beamed up at me, giggling. And. Then. A woman (a woman whom meant well I’m sure — they always mean well, right?) said, “You know, you shouldn’t tell her that she’s beautiful.” My head whipped around. I hadn’t even seen her there. I hadn’t even noticed her in the aisle with us. My mind went blank.”

Click HERE to continue reading More Than Beautiful at Raleigh Moms Blog!

Photo Credit: Shannon Haynie Photography (She’s awesome, by the way!)

This Beautiful Season

I adore fall. I adore this time of year. Everything about it makes me happy. I wrote a poem about it once, long ago. It took me a bit of time to track this oldie down, but I found it. I wrote it on Oct. 6, 2003, when I was trying to get back into writing. The date is funny now. October 6 is the date I married R. But, not until 2007. In 2003, we hadn’t even entered each others lives. So, it’s funny, yet appropriate, that this was the date on this poem. Back then, my heart was searching. Now, it feels so full and whole. Perspective, uh? Sometimes it’s the things that I wrote years ago, that end up coming back around again. Writing and I are like old friends. We spend a chunk of time apart, but we always find each other again. We always pick back up where we left off …

One Season


The breeze of autumn,

My favorite time,

It comes in soft and gentle,

Soothing, caressing,

Renewing my soul,

The chill in the air brushes against me,

Somehow warming the core of my being,

I feel more thoughtful during this time of year,

The sands of time move quickly,

Staying permanently beyond our grasp,

It leaves me lonely enough to feel alive,

And peaceful enough to let it surround me,

I understand myself most as the leaves change,

Though I don’t know why,

It’s mystery appeals to me,

Nostalgia tugs at my heart,

Images of love and love lost drift and scatter,

The smell of the air brings tears to my eyes,

I long for something,

Unsure what,

Yet, as the sun dips down,

Through a kaleidoscope of pink and orange,

Soft wool of an early winter sweater tight around me,

I look up at the sky,

And thank God that I am me, and I am happy.

My Best Girl – For Harper Jane

I’ve been reading too many sad articles this week. My heart is sore and sensitive. Part of me is aching for a world that I can’t help. I’m feeling raw. It’s time to crawl back in my cocoon and love on my littles. I have to put my phone away and stop reading things like this. They have a place. They have a purpose. But, no more for this week. No more tears for the world this week….

IMG_1441As I type this, my sweet best friend, my beautiful gold retriever, leans over and licks my leg. It confirms what I was already thinking. It’s time to get out of this house. She wants a walk and it’s a gorgeous, pristine fall day. I look down at her. I don’t know why they say diamonds are a girl’s best friend. I’d take this sweet gal over a diamond any day of the week. She’s the best of the best. All of these new studies confirming that dogs are intelligent, have the ability to reason and show emotion crack me up. All you have to do is love one. Then, you already know.

Harper Jane was/is my first baby. She’s the first one that I carried through the doors of our home. We loved her immediately. And, she returned our love without question. She loves hearing the story of how we chose her, straight out of a picture. It’s almost funny to watch. She gets still and quiet and listens carefully. So I tell her. I tell her all about how I became her mommy. She eats it up. So I keep telling her. I know it’s hard for her sometimes. She was the first baby, but most days, she comes in last. There’s a long line of needs that must be met throughout the day and she’s the quiet one. She’s the easy one. She’s the one that waits patiently for a little attention. Those of you that aren’t “dog people” may not get it. This is silly, you may think. But, she’s one of my great loves. And, she deserves more. I write about N and A all the time. I never write about my Harper. So, this one is just for her…

My Best Girl

She sees through us,

She knows what we need,
Her heart is gold,
So is she,
She’ll always be my best girl,
My best girl
Her soul is pure,
Her aura is bright,
She loves the wind,
She brings the light,
She’ll always be my best girl,
My best girl
She keeps us calm,
She makes us whole,
She brings love,
She soothes the soul,
She’ll always be my best girl,
My best girl
She doesn’t like to cuddle,
It’s not her way,
But she loves to give kisses,
It makes her day,
She’ll always be my best girl,
My best girl.

Back to free. Back to simple. Back to childhood.

This long, lazy, 4th of July weekend was simple perfection. It was sweet and carefree and so good for my soul. We kept it easy, old-fashioned, and no-fuss. It was exactly what our little family needed. It left us feeling refreshed, lighter, and proud. Proud to be living in this great country. Proud that we were born in America. Proud to dress the littles in red, white and blue! The 4th of July will do that for you … renew something inside of you … make you feel just like a child again. In the best way possible, of course!


Back to free. Back to simple. Back to childhood.

Is there anything better than laying in the grass and giggling?

With you, and all of your wonderfully carefree innocence, there isn’t. There isn’t anything better.

You bring me back. Back to free. Back to simple. Back to childhood.

Popsicles on hot days. The sound of the ice cream truck. Finding shapes in the clouds.

You bring me back. Back to free. Back to simple. Back to childhood.

Fireworks on the 4th of July. Hot dogs. Bare feet.

You bring me back. Back to free. Back to simple. Back to childhood.

Picnics. Playgrounds. Lazy days. Pool days.

You bring me back. Back to free. Back to simple. Back to childhood.

Sandboxes. Lemonade. Climbing trees.

You bring me back. Back to free. Back to simple. Back to childhood.

Blanket forts. Popcorn nights. Red, white and blue.

You bring me back. Back to free. Back to simple. Back to childhood.

Nursery rhymes. Jesus Loves Me. Curious George.

You bring me back. Back to free. Back to simple. Back to childhood.

Play-doe. Finger paint. Sidewalk chalk.

You bring me back. Back to free. Back to simple. Back to childhood.

Puzzles. Hide and Seek. Hopscotch.

You bring me back. Back to free. Back to simple. Back to childhood.

There is such a wonder. Such a magical freedom. I love going back with you.

I love watching it all through your eyes. Safe, shiny and new. It makes life feel lighter. It renews my faith in …

Everything. This is a gift. I’ll go with you. Back to free. Back to simple. Back to childhood.