After several friends texted me about One Beautiful Dream by Jennifer Fulwiler, I purchased and rapidly read the book. In it, Fulwiler writes with all her trademark humor about the complementarity of family life and the cultivation of a “blue flame” — a particular pursuit so essential to a person that it not only makes her more herself as she pursues it, but also more herself as she fulfills her familial vocation.

It might be that my “blue flame” is writing, but it might also be that my “blue flame” is creating order and beauty in our home because I’m not at all sure I could endure the level of chaos and disarray I’d need to embrace to be able to write with any kind of real regularity.

Nevertheless, life in our little household has been so marked by milestones lately that I feel compelled to record them somewhere, however briefly and imperfectly:

{Cinnamon Sugar} — nearly 10 months old — still does not crawl forward (par for the course for our habitually belated walkers), but covers ample territory by crawling backward and rolling. More delightfully, he claps and waves and babbles in evermore coherent syllables (“Fuh, fuh, fuh” is a new favorite, almost as though he wants to say his name). He eats about as much as you’d expect by the looks of him (Sweet Potato fondly refers to him as our “beefy baby”).

{Mint Julep} — at two-and-a-half years old — rocked the transition to a big-boy bed earlier this year and, just this week, after a few initially rocky days, seems also to have rounded a corner with potty training. He remains an exceptionally bright conversationalist. He’s also a budding (lefty) athlete, as his grandpas and daddy have brainwashed him to want to be, adept with any kind of ball and more than eager to swing any makeshift bat or club at any approximated tee in the house. He’s recently begun to mount his balance bike as he attempts to keep up with his big sister.

{Sweet Potato} — at almost four years old — has fully embraced her role as a “little mama” and routinely schools her two younger brothers on any number of important subjects, from letters and numbers to table manners and the meaning of life. She performed admirably at her first ballet recital, memorizes books word for word, sings in tune, bikes speedily and finally, finally, finally resumed a sane sleep schedule after she dropped her nap and the Oilman made a concerted effort to cut off her bed-escape-artistry. She’s also at last mastered dressing herself in outfits of her own choosing and has a pretty precious flair for fashion, fond as she is for head-to-toe florals.

{The Oilman and I} — at almost-thirty and 30 — eagerly anticipate the coming decade with ever-deepening gratitude and enthusiasm for life with these little ones!

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