Thursday, February 11, 2016

skip

Skip on over my blog today and link up to this article on a photo project on the inside of taxis in a big South Asian city.  Wow.

I love these images. 

I'm not much for coffee table books.  But this would totally make the cut for me!


Tuesday, February 9, 2016

The Crash

A few weeks shy of his first birthday, Asher has eight teeth and weighs 23 lbs. He also has a habit of trying to crawl while nursing.

It's time for him to move forward in life.  Weaning underway.

He isn't taking it so well.  Currently, he's biting my face and arms a lot to let me know that he would prefer to eat me more than a bottle and the carrots on his tray. We're pressing onward.

As for me, by baby #3 I anticipated the reaction.  That actually does make it easier, but still not that fun.  When I stop nursing, my hormones fall into a sort of insane plummet.  And so do my emotions.  It's like happy crashes and I wake up for a few weeks wondering why on earth everything is so terribly sad. (Or worse, annoying.)

Silas, at three, is currently working a lot on self-control. (It usually involves some sort of Lightening McQueen denial.) I am joining him this week. Feelings are overrated in times like this.  Fixed truths are our friends. We're plodding on.  Hopefully, another week or two and some of the crazy will pass.

In the mean time, this little guy is growing up fast.   For the most part, he's the strong and silent type.  But when he does have something to say, he says it with gusto.

video

Monday, February 8, 2016

Yum

Have I told you lately that I love the local breakfast? It's really a wonderful part of life here. My obsession has gotten so severe that on Saturdays, when hubs makes pancakes, I still order peanut chutney for myself. Here's a little sampler platter from our spot this weekend. 



Trust me. Delicious! 

Friday, February 5, 2016

Friday


Happy Weekend!

Thursday, February 4, 2016

Honor & Squabble

I have been listening to a seminar entitled Mother's Law by one of my favorite young mom writers, Rachel Jankovic.  I love that she talks more about the theology behind mothering, than the actual mechanics of a day.  It is helping me to work out some of the mechanics better in my own little world. 

One of the lessons for me as I've listened to her talk (and seen her writing) is the impact of the use of story in parenting.  I might be a little more tuned into this because of my recent interest in the Read Aloud Revival podcast. I've been thinking more about how story shapes us.  And what a tremendous medium it has been in my own life for deep truths to take root.  

So I've been experimenting a bit with the boys as we work through some issues in the brotherhood.  We're going through a season when it just seems so much harder to get along.  The love is intense, but so are the squabbles. "Live peaceably" is pretty much the verse of the month around here. One of the ways we're dialoguing about living in unity is through two friends we created.  Their names are Honor and Squabble.  Yesterday Squabble threw an all out fit over a purple striped sock. It was outrageous. And the boys loved it.  It's opening up good conversation and reminders for us, without the feeling that I'm nagging or preaching a lot.

Here's the start up story for Honor and Squabble. I have a feeling they are going to be our story-friends for a long time yet.



There once were two young knights.  Their names were Honor and Squabble.  Both of the young knights were very good at fighting.  And they had ample opportunity in their land for there were many wars raging.  However, they tended to fight about different things.  


Squabble was inclined to playground arguments about trifles.  He preferred a good fight over who had thrown the sand into a baby’s hair as much as a rift over who had reached the finish line first in a grand race among the boys. If someone took his favorite spoon at dinner, Squabble might fly into a rage and even shed tears. He didn’t mind to get a fellow in trouble either, he was as good at starting fights for others as he was finishing them up himself.  If someone bonked into another boy, and they both seemed not to notice, Squabble was quick to point it out and make sure that everyone felt the seriousness of it.  

Honor, on the other hand, preferred to save his strength for a different kind of fight.  Once, when his brother crashed his cycle, he rode as fast as he could to untangle him from the wreckage.  He helped him up and gave him a kind word to lift his spirits.  His mother needed him to save her from the distress of a diaper-change gone awry, so he fought his way through the living room forest to find her the wet wipes.  Once, he was tempted to lie so that he could win a game.  But, knowing that it takes more courage to tell the truth, he admitted that he had landed on the terrible, sinking snake. He took last place in the game but felt he could shake hands with dignity in the end. If ever anyone needed help, no matter how difficult, they knew they could rely on Honor.  


So it went that the boys fought on, in their own ways, until they were men. The fights looked a little different when they had grown up, but in some ways, they were very much the same. 

A Dawkins Girl


A brief glance at that little cousin picture will tell you that the Dawkins clan is heavily stacked with boys. 

This week there was a delightful upset in the trend.  David's sister just welcomed a little lady into the crew. We couldn't be happier to have a bit more pink in the family photos in years to come. We all know Grammar was praying hard for this extra bit of sweetness in our rowdy crew!




Welcome to the family, sweet girl! 

Monday, February 1, 2016

Hey, Mom!


We were rushing off to the neighborhood shop the other day for bread. Silas was with me. I was pushing the stroller like a woman on a mission, thinking about lunches for the next day and the growing list of chores to complete before bedtime. 

Silas tugs at my arm. 

 His face squints into the biggest grin he can muster.  Then he says, as if it might be the best news I've ever heard:

"Hey, mom, I'm smiling at you!!!"


It takes me a few minutes to realize that the only response he wants, is for me to smile back at him. 

Life lessons, 101.

Friday, January 29, 2016

Thursday, January 28, 2016

Celebrating small

This is the season in our big asian city when I lament the air quality produced by 10 million people sharing a small space. Asher's cough came back with a vengeance. Silas is wheezing. The air is thick every morning with smog. I'm contemplating a face mask.

My primary ailment however is nothing more than extreme sleep deprivation.  This comes with the motherhood package.  My main goals this week are to make sure every one is fed, bathed, kissed and clad.  Beyond that, we're considering all output a bonus.

I wanted to put something new on my podcast line up this week and stumbled across this episode with Emily Freeman.  Let's be honest, I was pacing a baby to sleep as I listened so I am sure I didn't catch everything, but there was one little line that startled my heart.  It's been rolling around my mind since I heard it.  She talked about a moment in counseling when some very simple words were spoken to her.

Celebrate your smallness.

As a young mom, I would say that I spend a good deal of time thinking about small details, encouraging myself and others to enjoy the small moments.  The way the baby smiled.  The five year old who just lost a tooth.  The noise of wild boys wrestling in my house.

But there is a very significant distinction for me between celebrating the tiny details of life, and celebrating my own smallness.

In fact, if I'm honest, I am constantly fighting against smallness. What project can I be a part of that will make a difference? What work can I do in this day that will really matter? Are we living our lives in a way that produces something…however good? None of these are bad questions.  But they are often lopsided in my life.

I spend very little time contemplating my smallness.  After all, our entire generation grew up believing that with a little bit of elbow grease, we could change the world. My mind rushes to what I can do and be and change.

But I want to spend more time bowing low, remembering that I am small. Celebrating my smallness. Relishing God's vastness. My life is a breath. He has always been and always will be. I am small.  God is big. He is in control.  I'm actually not.

With babies fussing and little boys' bikes crashing around me, I'm reveling in my smallness this week. Remembering that I am indeed the beloved creation, but HE is the Creator.

When I look at your heavens, the work of your fingers, 
the moon and the stars, which you have set in place, 
what is man that you are mindful of him, 
and the son of man that you care for him? 

O Lord, our Lord,
how majestic is your name in all the earth. 

Excerpts from Psalm 8, ESV

Wednesday, January 27, 2016

Film City Fun


The boys had the day off school yesterday, so we grabbed a few local friends and headed to the nearby amusement park. It's kind of like the local version of Universal Studios, with a very South Asian flare. The kids had a blast!