Thank you, Winter

I love winter. Always have. I love wearing sweaters and hoodies. I love hot chocolate and fireplaces (not that we have one) and snow and cuddling under a blanket. Winter was never an issue until I had children. And then I realized the yucky side...being stuck inside all day, runny noses, heavy jackets that aren't meant to fit in the carseat with the child, layering and layering and layering to be sure they're warm enough. I began to rethink my love for winter. And then, last spring I realized I was going to deliver a baby right before winter arrived. Hmm. I wondered what it was going to be like to have a 2.5 year old and a newborn stuck inside the house all day every day for the first 3 or 4 months. I sensed some difficult days ahead.

I think we can all agree that this winter has been very mild and different from past years. I am definitely not one to try and spiritualize everything, but I can't help but see this as God showing mercy on me! LOL He knew that I would not be able to handle being stuck inside day after day with an active toddler and a new puppy that loves to run and play in our yard. So, He gave me days like this...

This was February 1st, and Riley is in short-sleeves!

And He gave us days like this past Saturday when we spent almost the entire day outdoors. 

And then there was yesterday and today when I loaded both kiddos in the double stroller we're borrowing from a friend and headed out for a walk around the neighborhood (talk about a workout!). After our walk today, we stopped at one of the local parks so Riley could get in some playground time. He had a blast!

I realized we hadn't been to this park since before Ella was born...it was good to be back!

This was Riley's great accomplishment of the day. He asked to climb up this ladder-type thing, so I said sure I'd help him. I helped him maybe 3 times and before I knew it, Mr. Monkey was climbing up it over and over without any assistance. He was SO proud of himself! And I was, too!

Don't worry, winter, I'm not completely walking away from my love for you. But, I sure am thankful for some gorgeous, warmer days that allowed me to keep my sanity!

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