Monday, June 1, 2009

Totally TWObular

Good Morning Highlowaha, Happy Monday! It's Heather here to celebrate an important day with my friends here in HLA Land. You see, today is my daughter Lily's 2nd Birthday! We'll celebrate today by wearing a "Happy Birthday" hat to daycare, taking her to dinner out (a real treat!), going to swim lessons, and capping it off with some frozen yogurt at Dragon Berries. I debated long and hard over the tone of today's post. For awhile I was going to share with you all the details of her "Splish, Splash, Birthday Bash!" but I think I'll hold off until after the party to share all the pictures and fun that was had by our party-goers. No, instead I want to soak up the wisdom of the Highlowaha family.You see, today is a little bittersweet for me. I can't say that I haven't shed a few tears over the fact that my baby is growing up. It feels like yesterday that I was holding this in my arms:

And now, two minutes later I have a rambunctious, spunky toddler who tells me to "hush" every other minute.

Where has time gone? Better yet, what have I done to make the last two years matter? It doesn't escape me that time flies. With work, keeping the house in some semblance of order, and meeting the bare necessities of bath, meals on the table, and bed there isn't much time left to "savor the moment" but isn't that what highlowaha is all about? Originally highlowaha was a tool used by Claudia to make the most out of the dinnertime experience with her boys and now it has come to stand for a group of like-minded people getting together online to share how we make the most out of every day in life, how we personally embrace the spirit of 218. As one of the writers I feel like I should have this task down to a science but I can't lie and say that is the case. I feel like the past two years have gone by and I haven't soaked up every minute with my baby and now she has grown into a toddler and I can't recapture those moments.

So today will be about giving one another tips on how to capture those everyday moments, how to savor them before they slip away and as is always the way I'll start.

Our good friend Nan is a master at savoring the moment in time when your children are young and awe-inspired. Nan lets her kids be kids in the most beautiful way. You see, her youngest son Paul has a pair of rain boots that he adores and Nan, in her own way of letting him be the 3 year old he is lets him wear those rain boots, rain or shine, whenever his little heart compels him that they are what he wants to wear. It won't be long before Paul starts school and wouldn't be caught dead wearing a pair of red car galoshes and so Nan is savoring the moment where he will and she even lets him jump in any puddles along the way.

Alright, now it is your turn. What are your tricks and tips for embracing the moment where you are now instead of wishing it away for something better? This could be you as a college student, as a single person with no kids, or married with a brood.

Signing off until tomorrow...


Chaotic said...

What are your tricks and tips for embracing the moment where you are now instead of wishing it away for something better?

Small digital camera :-) iti s small enough to carry with me everywhere. I have it in a little carrying case w/my cell phone. I keep it charged for those moments that speed by. Then DO SOMETHING with the pictures. LABEL THEM. if you print them, write what was happening on the back and the DATE. If you are all digital, title the pic & place in a folder that tells you what was happening or which child it was for, etc. If you don't label it while it is fresh, you wont remember later. TRUST ME. Next, do something with an actual photo, whether digi-scrap or photo album. And lastly, share those pictures with others, including those in the pictures. My 22 yo son & I just went thru his baby scrapbook. :-)

Katie K said...

For me, a lot of my capturing moments is spent with 3 boys that are like brothers to me. Even though I get teased for spoiling them rotten, I will give them piggybacks until my back hurts, pick them up by their feet and spin them around, or read every book on the bookshelf to them. I do this because I want to capture each moment with them. I want to be the fun big sister, but at the same time, I hold them when they cry, listen to them when they are upset, and do whatever it takes to see those smiles and hear their laughter. I want them to know they are loved 100 percent by me and for me that means just being in the moment with them every time we get to spend time together.

Kat said...

Happy Birthday Lily!

One way I try to embrace the moment is by doing nothing. No major plans, no elaborate schedules, just quality time doing "nothing". I love just building with blocks or playing with play dough with Max. I feel like we really get to know each other and get to talk about whatever is on his mind. Yesterday we spent quite a while coloring with sidewalk chalk and it was so special to me. I really want to cherish these moments while he still thinks that playing with me is the most fun ever!

Nan said...

O.K. Heather! I must admit I cried when I read your post this morning, which brought me here to the comment page, if you can believe it!
Paul will be turning 4 this July and, like you, I am not sure how this happened! Time never stands still. Thank you for that reminder that it is O.K. to allow your children to embrace the moment and to let them be themselves!
I wish you could have experienced the sheer joy on the faces of many people at Uncle Julio's who saw Paul in his rain boots and bike helmet combination about 10 days ago. Quite a few stopped by our table........none were disgusted with the way we dresssed our son! ALL were bright with a smile and a laugh (probably conjuring up a distant memory of their own children around that age!) !!
Love the digital camera idea.....I usually have mine with me at all times! And KATIE, you're right...........LISTENING may be the key to embracing the moment!! This POST could not have come at a better time during the first fews days of the movie "UP".....just go and see it and you will APPRECIATE what you just blogged EVEN MORE!!!!

Sorry for the long post, you just yanked on a giant heart string of MINE!!!! Pass the tissue!!
Love, NAN

eknoxuk said...

Happy Birthday Lily! of the things I appreciate about getting to be home with the kids is that time doesn't fly like it did when I worked. Some days I want the day to go faster, that's when I have to stop and sing some silly songs, pull them on my lap or just join them in an activity instead of entertaining them so I can get stuff done. I try to remember that this time of wanting to be held will go too quickly, so I try to sit and hold them when they ask!

cassie p said...

Oh my goodness, Lily is 2 YEARS OlD!!! thats crazy talk! I will have to think about how i embrace the moment and let you know later today.

heather said...


Happy Birthday to you!!!!

I love that you share the day with Lily!

Katie K said...

If you're out there, a very happy birthday to Ashley, too! (even if you are just a lurker)

Cheryl said...

Happy Birthday Lily and Kat!

I'm having a busy morning so I need to come back to give you my thoughts but I'm glad to see that NAN came out of lurker status!!! :)

tera said...

happy birthday lily, kat & ashley heck (if you're out there)!

i love pictures. i need to get better about organizing them and displaying them, but i love, love, love taking them to remember special moments!

lindsaymarie said...

two of the biggest ways i try to embrace and capture the moment are practicing gratitude and journaling. gratitude is a pretty simple idea, whenever i am really happy in a moment, i just think about how grateful i am for the people there, or for the weather, or whatever it is that is making me so happy. sometimes i just tell people "thank you so much.." for being there, for making the moment so beautiful, or whatever it is. i've kept journals off and on since i learned to write. (those first grade journal entries are hilarious to go back to and read!) sometimes i make a gratitude list in my current journal, of whatever i'm grateful for that day or week. i love going back through my old journals and being able to remember exactly how i felt while going through a particular experience.

Claudia said...

Kat, Lily, and Ashley... Happy Birthday.

Beautiful post, Heather.

Here's one of the things I love about Nan - the woman Heather wrote about in her post and the photographer responsible for the great pic of her son.

Nan is spontaneous!!!! She doesn't require schedules and structure to function. I love this quality about her, because in most ways it is the opposite of me. I can imagine from a kids perspective, Nan's spontanity is a beautiful gift. If today her kids wake up and want to play in their p.j.'s all day, then that's exactly what they get to do. Maybe that is the "LISTENING" that Katie is talking about. Watching and listening to her kids, so Nan can follow their energy instead of the energy of the societies hustle and bustle.

I will never be as spontaneous as Nan. I can try to get better, but it will always be an uphill battle for me, because it is not part of my core being. I like structure and am pretty good at putting "structures/systems" in place. So... for me, family RITUALS is how I try to be in the children's youth.

Highs, lows, and Ahas at dinner time are an example. We eat together as a family every night and we share those three things about each of our days. We have other rituals... Sweet Cereal on January 13, letters to Santa mailed up the chimney on December 23, picking your own favorite dinner to be served on your birthday, book time before bed, and green, shamrock shakes on St. Patrick's day.

For each of those family rituals and the others not mentioned, I try to be 100% in the moment. My mind doesn't wander and I'm not thinking about doing anything other than enjoying that short, but special period of time. That is the one and only thing I want to be doing at that very moment.

Point? Use your strengths to figure our how to do what Heather is suggesting... embracing the momemnt. Don't beat yourself up for not doing it the way someone else does. Figure out exactly what that means to you and then go forth with confidence knowing your intentions of savoring special, but fleeting, moments with your kids and friends is your perfect gift to the ones you love. Perfect just as it is!!!!

Claudia said...

Ignore the zillion typos. It is the sentiment that counts, right?

Katie K said...

I kept a gratitude journal like Lindsay is talking about while I was in college. Every night before I went to bed I would write down 5 things that I was thankful for that day. It could be as simple as running into a friend while walking on campus. That way even on what I considered to be my "worst" of days- I had those 5 things that made the day significant- and made the moments of that day special.

One way that I have also started to embrace the moment lately is through converstaions with friends. We all lead very busy lives, and so for me, many times those onversations with friends are the first thing to get cut out of my day. Lately though, I have taken the time for those conversations and I am realizing how meaningful they are making my life! That's certainly something I'm thankful for over the past 2 weeks.

Peggy said...

Embracing the moment!

Happy Birthday to the lovely ladies who celebrate June 1 as their day!

It's cliche.... and I've said it before... I stop and smell the flowers.... literally. If I can, bend over a sniff an open flower. What a gift!

I also try an feel the moment... when outside I embed the blue sky and the warmth of sun on my face and really feel with all my senses.

I stand back from the crowd and really watch the event and listen to the sounds before I become a part of the event.

Anybody still goal fishing? I'm proud to say in May I completed a few small goals.... 70 bridal shower cards, approx. 25 sheets of paper 3'x9' for dd 8th grade dance, a few card orders and a few endless cluttered zones! And finally... practicing my piano.

Happy day to y'all!!!

Peggy said...

typos foralling my thought stream! hee hee.... wish I knew a Nan!!! You guys are all so lucky. Enjoy all those cool people!

Claudia said...

If we start now maybe we can get Nan to come to Taste of USA!!!!

Surely you'll want to be there PEggy!

Dana B the said...

Honestly . . . those wellies made my day as well on Sunday. I even told Claudia walking into the house that I knew I would be totally inspired to have a family while visiting. Between the dog and the kids, bright eyes, sticky fingers, messy faces, cookies, and the sweetest laughs . . . I can't wait. Now to answer the question "what are your tricks and tips for embracing the moment now . . ". I've been working on this and had to convince myself to stay in the moment. Right here and Right now. I've taken those closest to me for granted but it's a bad habit that I'm putting to rest. I've put people off the phone because something was too interesting on TV or a song I "love" (for the moment) just came on the radio. I can't tell you if it was one singular event or just the realizations of growing up that led me to understand how valuable time is. Moments are so precious. I can always push rewind on a movie, catch a rerun or keep the radio going knowing that the same song will come on in another 20 minutes. What I can't do is replay the moment that I needed to a give a friend. I can't ignore the rare occurrence of my 19 year-old brother calling because this new book is so thrilling at the moment. I can’t tell my mom, who lives alone, that I’ll call her back because I’m watching a great movie. I'm making a more conscious effort to recognize what is happening right now that I CAN'T put off. Some things are just more important in the moment than others. Some things just can’t wait. Love by living in the now. Hold on to the moment when it comes to you.

Cheryl said...

Excellent comments by all and I don't think I can top them. Live in the moment. The past is gone- remember it well. There is always another tomorrow. When Heather talks about savoring the moment that make me think of just being in that moment. Don't worry about how you're going to document it. Don't worry about what else you have to do. Damn Laundry! Just be there and you'll remember it. But it can't hurt capturing a photo and writing it down. :)

Dana! So glad you joined us. By the way, TJ Holmes is way hotter than Anderson Cooper but I still love AC.

Nan to Taste of USA! FUN! Who else can we persuade to go!!

Claudia said...

Welcome Dana! And such an eloquent post. You will fit right in with the rest of us at Highlowaha. You've already caught (and are living) the Spirit of #218.

Meet us here tomorrow for another day of fun.