all of our days have been ending in a fierce, and competitive round of candyland here lately.  it’s been a delightful way to call it a night.  i love being left with the satisfaction that my babies scored some quality time with me.  and dude, candyland is fun as heck!!

but i’m guilty (as charged!).  nathan and i were making our way to the candy castle, one flip-of-the-card at a time, and my gingerbread man was gaining on nathan’s.  then i passed him.   as my man makes it closer to the castle, i start to panic.  i do not, and i repeat, i do not want to win.  i want nathan to make it to the castle first so he can feel proud and i can slap him a high-five.  since he’s four and doesn’t pay no mind to what i’m doing, i quickly rearrange the top cards so that he picks this, and i pick that.  perfectly setting up the next few moves (wink-wink).
yes, i cheated.  i made sure he won.  i swear i don’t always let him win (but i mostly do), but i crave the joy he lets loose when he wins, so sue me.

moral to the story:  i got beat in candyland last night, by cheating.  i’m shameless.

currently, i’m hearing the ramblings of nathan ‘reading’ in the playroom-while the sisters nap.  i can tell which book he is reading due to his story line.  i can even call what page he is on.  at the moment, he is reading the hungry caterpillar, and he on the part where the caterpillar is eating through the strawberries (dramatic chomping and all).  sweet baby jesus, i love that boy!!

earlier this week, i threw down an old quilt and we had a little living room picnic.  just that simple little switch-up created such precious enthusiasm. after lunch everyday, like clockwork, it’s nap time. although nathan doesn’t actually nap, he knows that it’s time to play/read quietly in his room.  upon his very thought-out request, he asks, “can i just rest on the blanket today, with my books?”.  i didn’t even hesitate, “absolutely, that sounds awesome.”.

he felt so important and validated.  brother got to rest in the living room.  to him, it was a privilege.

this week i’ve been drilling the word, “gladness” into my childrens’ spongy  brain.  i want them to live life glad.  if there is an opportunity to be glad, we recognize it.

i was given the best example growing up and i just want to do the same. because gosh darn-it, i’m a happy girl, and i know that my mama is to blame for it.

as i stated in my facebook status, my mom was told by her doctor that she will inevitably be losing her hair two weeks after her chemo starts (next thursday!!).  of course she mourned this reality first.  but then…

what does she do?  she finds gladness.  she goes out and finds her a fancy wig.  and she realizes that she actually loves her new wig better than the hair that is about to fall from her scalp.  to quote her, “i picked out my wig today, and i actually like it better than my hair.  i’m so excited.”

bless her to the teeniest, tiniest, bittiest pieces.  everyone needs to be more like my mama.

gladness recap for us:
i’m glad for good friends being back home after a way-the-heck-to-long vacation.  nathan missed his little road dawg.

i’m glad for a certain baby staying soundly sleeping while allowing me some precious pool time with my lucy-pop.

i’m glad for cute little eight-year-olds who serve up iced lemonade, poolside.

i’m glad for the local splash park where i can easily manage my three little people, solo.

i’m glad i started running again.  i’ve missed it.  it’s my favorite.

but i’m the gladdest that we had our baby mary.  she has exploded my heart into bits.  and she makes me sweeter.

be glad.  it’s better this way.

pause button please!!

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