Ah, time for the annual update of This House on the Hill. So much is changing, yet so much remains the same.

The boys and I have had a great summer. We haven’t actually gone anywhere but kept busy.

Levi has had camps and sports practice-soccer, swim, Audubon. He is gaining confidence in his physical abilities and is starting to blossom. He is starting to swim on his own, and we are working on riding his bike without training wheels. His current loves are Legos and any type of building; he loves to pack up his adventure kit, put on his army suit, and venture into the woods on a journey into an imaginative world, where he is the hero fighting the bad guys. Dinosaurs and sharks still reign supreme, (he is planning a shark 5th birthday party with a giant Megalodon after all), and he revels in learning about nature, animals, and figuring out how things work. He is always asking questions, creating, and I can see the gears spinning in his head constantly. His current persistent question is “How do moms and dads connect with babies are made?” to which I am not yet quite sure how to respond in an age appropriate manner. Levi’s inquisitive nature has been apparent since he was a baby, and watching him ask questions and test out his hypothesis on whatever problem he encounters is such a joy to witness.

Silas is coming into his own, though he idolizes his older brother and is often happily tagging along with any activity Levi is doing. We have found that imitation is truly the most sincere form of flattery, in terms of little and big brother dynamics (sometimes to Levi’s chagrin). Silas loves to climb, run, and express his wild man demeanor, complete with the requisite screams of delight, as well as build blocks or Legos with his brother. He loves robots (especially Transformers), and cars, and various objects become flying bots (cue his Transformer robot sounds).  The kid is a blur; he is rarely still, always on the move, and usually riding the cusp of that precarious line between independent explorations of his abilities and life-in-peril danger. At age two, he has probably seen way more (violent) cartoons above his age group than he should, so the Thomas the Train/Daniel Tiger binge his older brother would demand has been exchanged for the more high octave, action packed shows of Transformers and Voltron. His speech has recently exploded, and he is always chattering about what he sees, thinks, is doing, wants, or arguments with Levi, which generally end in a physical battle to the end which older brother usually dominates (for now).

As the boys have grown across all domains, my life has become more busy as well, and I find myself having less time for projects, and spend more time mediating fights, kissing booboos, being recruited on a team to fight bad guys, chauffeuring kiddos to various activities, and attending to their needs throughout the day. It’s a bit paradoxical, as they play more independently with each other now for long stretches of time, but as naps for Levi are gone and are waning for Silas, and with the demands that come with being such busy creatures, I feel like as soon as I gather my thoughts and tend to something else I am pulled back into the fray. I know I will miss this and try to be cognizant of how fleeting this time is, but sometimes I am not as present with them as I should be, trying to clean or do work on the computer that despite checking the boxes I feel like I haven’t been WITH them as much as I should throughout the day, even though they are only a couple feet away. I feel like I am trying to juggle all the things, keeping up with my domestic duties, mothering, wifing, and trying to have some hobbies/self care of my own that I kinda wander through the days in a blur of various nagging voices in my brain, with things from all directions shouting at me all at once. The night time is the worst, when my anxiety kicks into overdrive, and I go over the day, my faults, things I need to work on, worries….so even on the days where the boys sleep through the night, I am still awake in the quiet, gears turning, over-analyzing and sleep deprived.

It is hard to check all the boxes and feel like I completed them well, especially when it comes to the kids (and Trevor).

But, I am reminded of times like this exact moment, where as I type out this monologue Silas is snuggling in my lap, our morning ritual. This is what I’m gonna miss.

Anyway….our big news (not a baby, no more babies for us, I repeat no more babies) is our upcoming (temporary) move to the sunshine state of Florida for six months over the winter while Trevor trains on the new jet. I am excited, nervous, all the things-and of course, still totally unprepared. This is happening in six weeks and we aren’t ready yet in any way. There are doctor appointments to schedule, cleanings, packing, house searching, car issues…ya know, general military move stressors. But, we will get there. And we will be together, which is the important thing. So, this house on the hill will temporarily become this house on the beach! We are hoping to have a caretaker here over the winter, and will be back up on our hill in the late spring. It’s a little bittersweet, as Levi will miss most of his school year and skiing, but we are heading into it as an adventure and looking forward to breaking up the monotony of Guard life for a bit with a long term TDY.

I am working more on my photography, doing some family sessions here and there as time allows, and looking to get back into sewing more, but as explained above, life gets crazy and I need to work on planning and following through more with what I begin! I do believe it is important to have hobbies and maintain some sense of self when the needs of littles is so taxing and supercedes that of your own-its for sanity! The funny thing is most of my sewing and photos are centered around my boys (go figure). I cherish being able to make them little things though-they love it (for now, again I know this too shall pass) and I want to remember their littleness (reminds self to make prints of photos).

Maybe I’ll actually start writing regularly here, maybe not, we will see. I would love to document more of what we are doing more often, and occasionally share some makes and activities but I am not making any promises until I figure out how to streamline life more efficiently with my most precious people in this world. My life is busy but rich with love, and I don’t know how I got so blessed to have my three guys.

Until next time-maybe beachside!