Wow. May 10, 2010 was supposed to be the day she arrived. Chris was at work and I was home, swollen and 40 weeks pregnant waiting for the first sign (any sign!) of Ripley’s arrival. I had taken several long walks with the dogs on a hot, sunny 80 degree Georgia day to the point of exhaustion — hoping to induce some signs of labor. Nothing…. the day went by as uneventfully as it had started. Three days later, our baby girl had hit the world and Ripley Carmine Templeman changed our world as we knew it. Fast forward to May 2012 — Not only is this upcoming Sunday, May 13th my Dinky’s 2nd birthday but it’s also Mother’s Day.
Becoming a Mommy was something I had imagined but never could really wrap my mind around. The idea of being responsible for someone else who is so completely dependent on you is mind boggling. But it’s also validating… it’s uplifting, exciting, joyous and new. It’s seeing life experienced once again through a fresh set of eyes, slowing you down and making you pay attention to the little things in a big, rushed world. I feel like a lot of time I get so wrapped up on the doldrums of the everyday that I miss the point of life.
Life is not dollars in a savings account, a big house or a beamer in the driveway. It’s seeing a big smile in the morning, it’s the whines and cries protesting a nap, the pizza sauce that needs to be wiped out of a tiny toddler nose after dinner, the laughter that comes along with tickles and sometimes, it’s the naked toddler butt streaking past you soaking wet fresh out of the tub. Those moments that even when you’re dead tired you can appreciate and find simple happiness. These are the joys that come with being a Mommy. And now that Liam is here, I get this x 2 which makes me twice as lucky.
Also being a Mommy myself makes me appreciate my own Mom (and my Nana) so much more. I can understand completely when my Mom tells me she misses the babies so much when she’s in Niagara Falls. I miss them painfully and I only leave to go to work in the morning. It’s so very true that they say Mothers are the keystone of the family and I’m just figuring out my path and identity as a Mom as Chris and I build our own family together.
So as we approach Sunday — Happy 2nd birthday to my big girl, Ripley Carmine! Happy Mother’s Day and Thank you to my own Mom and Nana for being the best role models a woman could ever have. And lastly THANK YOU, Ripley and Liam for leading me on this journey of self discovery as I try to be the best Mom I can be for you both. I love you so much!
Love in its purest form
The Templeman’s have been keeping some buys schedules lately with class, work, doctor visits, appointments, follow-ups, procedures, recovery, exams, soccer class, and well all the tiny bits of daily living that goes in between to hold this wonderfully crazy thing we call life rolling along. However with Easter Sunday soccer class was post-poned and we all spent a easy going Sunday taking care of small tasks and generally enjoying some low-key time at home without agenda or itinerary. IT WAS GLORIOUS! The morning came and we spent time preparing breakfast and letting the kids enjoy their Easter bounty.
Wheeling and dealing on the goods!
Discussing what to open first…
Ripley & Liam investigating their baskets
Then Kellie went to plant some flowers in our front yard around the tree and refresh our mulch, only to discover that our previous flowers were struggling against the winter weeds but had come back for spring this year! The tree now beautified and mulch refreshed we cleaned up and headed out the house, original destination was Target but unknown to us Target is closed on Easter. So on to Wal-mart who closes for no holiday or denomination! A bit of shopping for a few odds and ends, plus a few things we saw while we were there and we headed home. After we hit the homestead and had some lunch it was nap time for the house, which means Daddy got in some game time. Once the house re-awoke we settled into night time routine of baths and winding down before bedtime. Kellie and I spent some time together in the evening relaxing and enjoying that moment all parents come to appreciate, a quite house.
Overall Easter was a good relaxing day with the Family, and honestly it couldn’t have been a better way to spend it.
“To be matter of fact about the world is to blunder into fantasy–and dull fantasy at that–as the real world is strange and wonderful.”
- Robert A. Heinlein
I love this picture of us… Sometimes it’s hard to have a quiet moment and enjoy it because Ripley is a whirling dervish. My husband snapped it while Liam and I were having a quiet moment before heading off to bed. Love this little boy so much! Ripley and Liam are my whole wide world!
Loving this lil' boy
Took the kiddies to see the Easter Bunny at SouthLake Mall last week and it was definitely an adventure trying to maneuver and get a good picture with both Ripley and Liam. Ripley would smile, then not smile…. Liam seemed to keep sinking into the Bunny’s armpit.
The fun came after — Ripley did not want to leave the Bunny. She ripped carrots off the display to “feed” him dinner, which was really funny. The guy in the costume was really great with her since Ripley kept grabbing his hand and trying to lead him all over the mall.
Ahhhh…. children. So cute, so funny and so crazy.
Chillin' with the Bunny -- Easter 2012
"You're coming with me, Bunny!"
"Here's your carrots -- fresh off the display!"
We signed Ripley up for a toddler soccer program (SoccerTots) at Score Indoor Soccer facility in Fairburn. It gives her a chance to hang with some other little kids, play and run, run, run. It’s not competitive soccer by any means but they teach listening and coordination skills. And they still get to kick the ball around too. It’s fun to watch her run around with a big smile on her face….. even if her most favorite part of soccer right now is drinking out of the water fountain and trying to steal the coach’s iPhone.
Ready for Soccer
Soccer time! And a few leaves too....
There are some days I’m sure that both my husband and I must feel like we’re in a time warp. It was literally just the end of December, we welcomed our son to the world and then BOOM! Hello, month of March… thanks for sneaking up on us. January and February were a complete blur of doctors appointments, sleepless shifty nights and lots (and lots!) of daytime children’s TV. Sprinkle that with many trips to Babies R Us, the grocery store and taking the dog to the vet for dental work and that would be our past two months in a nutshell. Add in that I must be clinically insane and started two more classes again this semester at CSU and you have a complete recipe for exhaustion.
I started back to work yesterday and OMG, it was the suck. I thought I would feel somewhat rejuvenated to be back at the lab but it just feels like jumping back into the same circle of fire I left behind in December. Chris has been back to work for a bit now but I’m sure he feels the exact same…. it’s just work, most things never change so all you can do is just go with the flow and get er’ done.
Spending our day with the kids while I was off is an adventure. Ripley is the definition of constant motion — running, touching, screaming, laughing, eating/snacking and generally excitable. She’s also hilarious and most days can make me laugh my butt off. She’s starting to talk and verbalize a lot more and nothing is funnier than handing her the phone when a telemarketer calls. Watching her grow is amazing stuff and words can’t describe how much she changes daily. Liam is growing and growing too…. he went from a scrawny, 5lb little wrinkly newborn to a bright eyed, roly poly and smiley 11+ pounder in no time flat. He’s still not sleeping through the night but he’s getting better. My mom is still with us and thank god for her because she’s been so much help. I will be so sad when she has to go home but I know my parents really want to get their house sold and settle down here as soon as possible this spring. My Dad has been holding down the fort and continuing to pack up the house in Niagara Falls while my mom’s been down here but I know the snow and loneliness has to be getting to him by now even though we talk to him every day.
It’s amazing that it’s already almost spring…. that means as soon as we know it, Ripley’s 2nd birthday will be upon us soon (2 already??? The honey badger is growing up so fast!) and our action packed summer full of Templeman family holidays will be too. And I know Chris and I will still be looking forward to our first full night of sleep, which I hope will come sooner rather than later if Liam will participate!
Giving her brother the rules of the house
Ripley and Liam -- Feb 2012
On 12-29-11 our little Liam Parker Templeman was born! We spent two days at Piedmont Newnan Hospital for delivery and recovery before coming home. So we’ve finally settled in a bit and things are becoming more routine by the day as lil’ Liam Parker Templeman joins our happy home! Grandpa has gone home but he spent his fair share with the little one before he left, Nan has had to be careful with how much time she spends with lil’ Liam as Ripley has been more sensitive about sharing her attentions than anyone else in the house but even this is getting better and better. Nan has been a real help for Kellie and I, watching Ripley while we take Liam for his check ups and just by being another pair of eyes and hands to intercept our very quick and very sneaky lil’ ninja!
Sitting with the Grandkids!
Liam Parker Templeman
A sleepy Liam!
Ripley has been getting better and better with her new little brother, at first she saw him as blatant competition for our attention and affections! Whether she was trying to crawl into our laps during his feedings, poke her nose in during his diaper changes (not something I’d recommend), or just generally wanting to have our attention on her. Just a few days in and well she’s gotten over most of that, she even greets her brother in the morning with a wave, checks on him when he cries out, and sits calmly with us when we are holding him (very endearing in fact). So Ripley is certainly going to be a great big sister!As for Mom and Dad well surprisingly Liam has been almost as agreeable as Ripley was during her early weeks. He’s sleeping in 3~4 hour blocks, eating regularly, no spit up, and processing everything right along. He has been more of a face scratch-er than his sister so we’ve adopted the baby mitts to try and curb him from shredding his puffy cheeks. We definitely feel more rested this around than we did with Ripley, whether that’s from veteran parenting or simply an easier planned delivery is anybody’s guess. In any case we are happy and adjusting as we have too, our next big adjustment is my returning to work this week, so we will see how that goes.
We would like to thank everyone for the cards, notes, tweets, texts, phone calls, gifts, and of course well wishes for our son. Thank you all again very much!
“When a father gives to his son, both laugh; when a son gives to his father, both cry.”
- William Shakespeare
As the year 2011 comes to a close I look back on everything that has happened over the last year with a bit of wonder, surprise, and a sense of accomplishment. Here are some highlights:
- Kellie completed two semesters at Clayton State University with, of course, straight As and finally admission into the Psychology Graduates program!
- Now over a year at Peer1 hosting and still enjoying my job as well as looking for ways to improve it and myself while I’m there.
- Ripley has celebrated her first birthday, we watched her first steps, saw her grow into a fiercely independent, and supremely strong willed little girl.
- We of course celebrated our second wedding anniversary, just the second of many!
- The holidays were a bit of a blur as they usually are sometimes but we spent lovely time with our family and loved ones!
- And last but not least we found out we were to have our second child, and just recently on 12-29-2011 Liam Parker Templeman was born!
This year we haven’t lost any family, thankfully, but we know those who have an our hearts go out to them. We remember those we’ve lost and miss them every time we gather with our family and know they would be sitting there with us laughing, debating, joking, kidding, and smiling with the rest of us. Those we were able to see and be with know you are loved and never far from our thoughts, life keeps some of us busy but no one is forgotten no matter how long between visits.
There have been changes in the world and how people think, the change is spreading and growing more people our age and younger are looking up and realizing that they don’t like what they see. Those that have been active and chosen to participate in active change I salute you, carry on.
We have had a great year and like most it has been a crazy and joyous! Honestly 2012 is looking to be even busier, crazier, and well a whole lot of fun. We look forward to Ripley being able to say more and more and Liam growing into a crawler, a walker, then much like his big’sis a full hell on wheels Templeman. We are blessed and we give thanks for being so, we look forward to the new year with a renewed sense of hope, wonder, and anticipation! We hope every one has a happy and joyous 2012!
“Call it a clan, call it a network, call it a tribe, call it a family. Whatever you call it, whoever you are, you need one.”
- Jane Howard
Our house is alive with busy feet and squealing laughter, the family has arrived this week and settled in for the holidays. Ripley has been thrilled and is keeping everyone quite entertained and of course on our toes!
Over time how I view the holidays has changed greatly. As a child it was the usual excitement of gifts and family gatherings, but into my teenage years holidays became a chore and well weren’t always the most happy times in my life. Once I moved out holidays were well sparse for a bit. I didn’t really choose to associate with family along the holidays. Now with a family myself I’m stuck wondering what kind of holiday traditions to have with my kids down the road, because I have very few that have hung around. Right now this is not such a big deal as Ripley is just now old enough to get excited about wrapped boxes, and Liam isn’t even here yet, but the thoughts to occupy my mind.
Lately I’ve really appreciated adopting and making Kellie’s family’s traditions part of our own. I love having a full house and lots of laughing going on even if it is sometimes at someone else’s expense. I’m happy to have the in-laws down, and I’m even happier to have a healthy family to gather with. Liam will be joining us soon enough and we will be starting another new chapter in our lives and I for one can’t wait!
I wish this update was more coherent but it’s 2am… I’ll do better next year.