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I hope Dr. Seuss doesn’t mind my botching his title.

For a little over a month now, Evie has been without her pacifier- and let me tell you, that is a BIG deal. One afternoon I was putting her down for a nap and couldn’t locate any of her 3 plugs that were floating around. I softly explained to her I was so sorry but couldn’t find her plug and that it went “bye-bye”, said a quick prayer, closed the door, and waited for the tears and wailing that were sure to come from her room. But…only silence. I couldn’t believe it! She has asked for it twice since then but that’s all (still exhaling).

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I wasn’t in any hurry to have Evie give up her plug, but I was worried that when the time came around to give it up, nap-time and bedtime would be fraught with wailing and gnashing of teeth for several days. I’m grateful that was one “transition” that went smoothly- decent sleep is paramount for this woman.

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She was quite the pro at talking while keeping it in her mouth.

The phases of childhood have been on my mind a lot lately, and not that I’ve seen 1/10 of them, but just in general, knowing they are always growing. I’ll confess that when difficult stages arrive I seem to have a habit of getting my view stuck solely in the present, forgetting that the future will bring positive changes (hopefully) and new developments sooner than I think. Instead of praying for grace and adapting as my mantra, “This too shall pass”, I’m like, “Is this going to be FOREVER?!“.B&W2

But then there’s those subtleties of the innocent baby and toddler years that tug at my heart when I notice they’re gone- sounds, actions, words.

For instance, when Evie first learned her numbers she would say “se-sen” instead of seven. Tim and I got a kick out of it and would often count to six and stop to see if she would interject with “se-sen”. Then one day without missing a beat she said, “se-wen”, and she has said it that way ever since. It’ll be a really sad day when she exchanges “twenty” for “twenty-teen”!

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There’s a picture in our dining room of JPII holding out his arm to give a blessing. One night Evie looked up at it, lifted her arm and said, “Five. High five!”. I am sure he high-fived her from heaven. :)

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Every time we begin grace at meals Audrey looks up expectantly, clasping her hands together. And the other day I found her babbling to her stuffed animal as she was waking up from a nap- precious as all get out.

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I try to jot these little things down because if I don’t you can be sure they’ll flee from my memory faster than Evie used to fling her food at mealtimes.

I’ll be the first to raise my hand and admit that raising little kids isn’t a perpetual cute-fest full of sunshine and smiles, and the”be sure to savor every moment!” comments…well, I’d rather not cherish the tantrums, thanks. But I *hope* that I can glean a tiny little memory from each phase to tuck into my heart, because before I know it my girls will be on to the next one and the memories will blur together- truly.

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My mom often recounts stories from when my siblings and I were younger (ages ago), and I can tell they are dear to her. It reminds me of the Blessed Mother (and who better to emulate?):

“But Mary kept in mind all these things, and pondered them in her heart.” -Luke 2:19

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