Beauty in the Mess,  Ezra,  Family,  Fatherhood

Beauty in the Mess ~ Edition 08.12.15

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The past few weeks have honestly been beautiful in some of the most surprising ways.

As I began this year both pregnant and trying to map things out for Ezra as he transitioned out of behavioral therapy, I knew that the plans would leave me having to deal with him all-day, every-day (no programs) during the last 5 weeks of my pregnancy.

Given how bad things were for us last summer, behaviorally for Ezra and emotionally for me, I was dreading these coming week. I had no idea how we would cope.

Things have gone SO WELL. We are incredibly thankful for our YMCA membership that has allowed us to still utilize at least 2 hours of childcare on days we are free (as well as providing both of us with the opportunity to get exercise with a walking track and pool available).


(Little Brother at the YMCA)

Ezra has also just had a better few weeks. That’s the simplest explanation. He’s sleeping and napping decently, playing better independently, and showing quite of bit of maturity as he nears his 5th birthday next month. It’s the little things – like having him put his bowl in the sink after meals, getting dressed when we ask him to, having kinder words, and showing less physical aggression than he was back in May in June.

Our new family therapist has been helpful in troubleshooting problem areas and trying to help us find solutions. In some ways, our discipline tactics have become a lot firmer than they were earlier this year – but the difference is that we are balancing it with a lot of sensory input and a strict routine. Ezra is just responding to it better for some reason. Strategies that we tried a year ago that ended in screaming and hitting fits are working beautifully now. I think we can just owe that to maturity on Ezra’s part.


Ezra and Daddy have also been getting along better over the past few weeks. There are still “trouble times” that we can count on being difficult (when Daddy has to leave for work, dinner time, and shower time, to name a few), but they are also building up a lot of positive interactions as well. With me being so close to delivering, needing rest breaks, and needing to stay out of the NC heat – they have been doing a lot more things just the two of them (heading to the park after Russ gets home from work, hiking on the weekends, etc).

12 hiking with dad and grandpa

(Saturday hiking with Dad and Grandpa –
Mommy got to get a manicure/pedicure!)

02 Funny Kitty videos

(Daddy / Son bonding over silly pet videos on Youtube)

Earlier this year, when we would swim as a family, Ezra was very resistant to anything Russ would try to do with him in the pool and they would fight the entire time. Now, when we get in the pool, Ezra ignores me and spends the entire time with Daddy. Which is AWESOME!

daddy and boy at the Y

I know that these good phases generally mean there’s a rougher phase coming around the corner – and I expect that to hit about the time that baby comes and Ezra has to start school again. But for right now, I’m loving the peace which we so desperately needed at this critical time in our lives while we prepare to welcome Little Brother into our home.

Now for the rest of the beauty…

4th of July Weekend fun at Dan Nicholas Park:

(No way was Mommy getting on that train…)

17 Dan Nicholas Park 4th of July

Beautiful summer camp art projects:

01 little pirate

Ezra’s last day of summer camp:

08 last day of summer camp

Everyone who came to my baby shower gave me encouragement cards that I can pull out of the box for different parenting/motherhood situations. One morning, after telling Ezra to get dressed for about the 15th time, I decided to crack into it. I selected one that just said “Kids,” and this is what I found…

03 encouragement

A rough day, but a day we still had beautiful moments like this:

04 flowers from my boy

Beauty in Ezra practicing some of his Big Brother skills:

05 practicing big brother skills

Impromptu evening plans to go see Minions. We all enjoyed it, but it’s not NEARLY as good as Despicable Me (1 OR 2).

06 Minions

Beauty in celebrating our 3rd annual Cow Appreciation Day at Chickfila.

07 Cow Appreciation Day

Beauty in self-directed bear crawling – something we try to get him to do for sensory input!

09 Bear Crawl

Beauty in him wearing his shirt backwards on purpose, “because I’m a baseball player!”

10 baseball player

Beauty in leaps independent play. While I’m not a huge fan of him throwing blocks across the kitchen, it DID keep him occupied!

11 independent play

And beauty in independently doing preschool activities!

14 preschool on his own

Beauty in evenings full of coloring and watching Heroes in preparation for the new Heroes Reborn series coming out on the fall!

13 heroes and cuddling

Beauty in having a chiropractor who COMES TO MY HOUSE and puts up with Ezra being a complete stinker during adjustments. This is saving us traveling 35 minutes one way to get adjusted weekly.

15 traveling chiro

Beauty in our trips to the YMCA pool, and this cuteness that results:

16 after the pool

Beauty in boys who enjoy climbing trees:

18 Tree Climbing

Bittersweet beauty in this conversation:

Me: Ezra, come cuddle with me. I need some cuddles from my baby boy.
Ezra: I’m not your baby boy. {Little Brother} is your baby boy. I’ll cuddle with you, but I won’t be your baby boy. 

19 Not your baby boy

Beauty in in-laws who take this boy away to the beach for an entire weekend, giving Mommy and Daddy chance to catch up on rest, housework, errands, and Netflix.

22 ezra's beach vacation

Beauty in waking up to an exhausted-from-the-beach trip boy sleeping until 8AM, a clean house, and tea ready to be made (thank you Hubby)!

20 restful morning

Beauty in being ousted from my regular seat for a lunch party of stuffed animals who eat invisible food:

21 lunch with friends

And finally, after several weeks of searching every Coke cooler in every store I went to, FINALLY finding Little Brother’s name on one, in Shoe Carnival of all places!

23 share a coke with

(Yes, I’m a tease…)

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