Big sister and Little brother

Man, do I love my kids! They are becoming amazing siblings and I love to see them grow together. Ever since the girl has been in kindergarten, the boy asks me, more often, if I will play with him - and I try but I'm not as good at pretend as my 5 year old so it's nice when she comes home and they can once again have adventures together. The other day, he asked, "can pick her up from the bus by myself mom?" and on a different day, she came home from school and immediately told him "she missed him all day at school." They melt my heart with their adorable bond. 

For all the cute times they share; there are just as many mean and nasty times. She won't share and he gets upset and hits or calls names. He takes her things from her room and she mostly freaks out and tattles on him. It can take it's toll on a momma and on their relationship. The other day he was so angry that I separated them and myself, because I often need to calm down too. We had our "time-outs" did some talking and prayer and I sent them back to play. Mothering wears me out but I am learning to find ways to refresh my soul (Bible memory and prayer) and seeing the kids living life together in their very first "community" is a soul refreshment indeed. 

I've been taking pictures of them together since he was born. In the first years it was more intentional, "You go sit next to your brother and I'll take your picture." But as they have grown and interact more often, I try to snap the photo without them knowing. Those shots are real-life and often my favorite. That's not to say I don't still make them pose together (like every Sunday during December because of their cuteness) but I want them to be able to look at the pictures and remember their friendship; not just the fact that mom made them dress up fancy and take a picture by the fireplace. 

Here are some photos I've taken recently and a few from their younger years:

Reading to brother

Walking, hand in hand, to the bus stop in the morning

I take a lot of pictures while we are waiting for the bus. 

Reading and rocking! The best
Matching plaid, matching cheeks 2012
Dressed up for Easter! 2012 (Bringing up Boys book on the floor that I have yet to finish)
Driving the jeep at grammy and papa's 2012
They walked around holding hands! 2012
It has taken me a few days to write and finish this post. I loaded the pictures long ago and revisited it this week. But this week has been tough in parenting-land and I just didn't know how to write about my sweet kids who weren't being so sweet and neither was their momma. This year, God is showing me more of my need for Him and His grace - grace to me and grace I can give to them because of Him. I want to pour grace on my kids but I just don't naturally behave that way and I constantly have to catch myself in the heat of the moment and stop to pray for grace. That's the only way and hopefully it will become easier but I look to God to give me everything I need to raise these two beautiful gifts for His glory.

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