When we first got to Wisconsin, Lara was one of the first people I met. I was instantly struck by her inner and outer beauty and just by the fact that this tiny little thing had 7 children! And then as we got to know their family better and as we spent time in their home, I was even more struck by the love they have for each other, by the kindness and happiness they share, and I found myself craving to be around them! We are so grateful for Lara and her family, and I can't wait for you to "meet" Lara. She blogs over at My Fabulous Chaos, but today she's over here, talking about her family and the little things in life. Thanks so much for visiting, Lara, for being my dear friend, and to all of you who might be reading this...do yourself a favor and go read Lara's blog...every day...it will fill you with joy!
Happy day everyone! My name is Lara! I am so excited to guest post for Ashlee! She is a dear friend and I look up to her in so many ways! I wanted to share a little about me! I am a mother to seven, married for 16 years! Our lives are busy, crazy and so wonderful all at once! I grew up as number two in my large family of eleven children! There were always lots of children around, always a little one that I could help take care of. I loved it! I knew at a very young age I wanted to be a mom. When asked what I wanted to be when I grew up, with out fail every time, my response was be a mom! Fast forward 23 years and I became a mom! Our sweet Emma was a part of my heart before she even entered this world. I loved her before I even met her, I have felt the same way seven times.... and each time is just as wonderful! I will take all the kids running errands and I get a lot of looks, questions, raised eyebrows. I greet each one of those with a smile! Isn't it so wonderful that we were blessed with seven! Seventh heaven! Some people see it as a lot of work and I don't see it that way, I find it joyful. I want to see the joy that is in those everyday things. I truly believe it is a matter of perception. I can see the last minute grocery store errand with either a joyful heart or look at it as an irritation. I choose to love that quick trip to the store, I choose to make it fun and see it as some extra time we got to be together! I think it is so important that our kids see us be joyful and love what we are doing, that we love them. Look beyond the chore and really
see them in that moment~ Find the joy!
Life is not always super rosy and easy! We have our crazy chaos moments in our home too! Honestly some of the worst moments turn into the best memories! I will share one quick story with you. My husband was out of town, my children had the stomach flu...... four of them at once.... it was awful! I will never forget that night. I was in the tv room with a few of the sick kids, Emma our oldest was helping Lucy (4) get some water in the kitchen. Lucy starts throwing up, Emma yells for help, Mikey (10) jumps over the couch to grab a bowl, he slides through the throw up, he starts dry heaving. Emma then starts getting sick too, when she sees Mikey has now gotten vomit all over the floor! The other kids were yelling to get them to watch out for the vomit! It was a disaster and now one of the funniest stories that they will laugh about. I always try to remember that in those crazy moments!
So now that I am in my thirties (YIKES!) and a mom, is it all I thought it would be? If I could go back, would I change my answer from mom to something different like doctor? No, not even for a second. My dreams have come true, being a mom is all I ever imagined and more. My heart aches with love every day. I love them more every day, I love being their mom more every day. Is it hard, oh my yes! There are days of not showering, days of not eating a "real " breakfast, sleepless nights, messy bedrooms that were just cleaned the day before, meltdowns and arguments with each other. There are also surprise hugs, stolen kisses, beautiful drawings of their "family", whisperings at night of plans for the next day, inside jokes, reading together, playing together, impromptu dance parties, teenage quick hugs, family games, and little hands that hold mine. I see my sweet children growing into these amazing people.......and I think.... hard , oh yes, some days it is hard .... worth it.... oh my, yes EVERYDAY!
So the next time you are out running errands or cleaning the house or making dinner, invite your kids, find the joy in it! Make some memories, laugh, dance a little and remember these are fleeting moments! If you see me out and about with my little family, come up say hi! If I have not showered or have baby spit up on my clothes, just know that as hectic as it may seem, I am living my very own dream come true!