1. Today is my only daughter's birthday. She is 9 years old. She came into this world super quick with a couple of pushes and weighed in at 9 pounds. Jason was taking a Series 6 test and had the proctor hold his phone since my water broke a few minutes before he went into the test center. He literally ran through the hospital and came in the delivery room just in time for me to push her out. My sweet Emory Hope.
2. For Emory's birthday we went to NYC to celebrate her birth and the birth of my sweet Lolly. This was so special for me because Lolly is the only person I have watched enter this world and witnessed the first breath. Betsy and Lee are the best hosts and we had an amazing time. I wish I could tell you every detail, because you know I love New York, but I'll hit the highlights. First of all, traveling with a sling and a heavy coat are not easy, but Em is a trooper.
3. On Friday we arrived in time to pick Hattie up from school. Sweet cousin reunion. We went and had cookies at momofuko milk bar and then got the girls' nails done at Dashing Diva. After their nails were dry they said, "Can we go home and play now?". It was then that we remembered what was important to them, time together. Not stuff, just playing. Andrea happened to be in the city cashing in on her spa day at Bliss so met up with her and Kari Jo for dinner at Jacob's Pickles. I love resteraunts that consider themselves southern in NYC. All of the sandwiches, including hamburgers, were served on biscuits and the appetizer special was fried pickles. I have never had an entire spear fried but that is how Jacob likes them. The food was good but the company was awesome. It is so encouraging to be around such Godly women who are in all stages of parenting; from 18 going to college all the way to one who just started to walk, and everywhere in between. Although most of our communication is electronic, I consider these women true friends.
4. The American Girl store was our first stop on Saturday. We had brunch and celebrated Em's birthday. Little did she know that her grandmother had given me an envelope with enough birthday money in it to buy a new doll and have her (the doll's) ears pierced. She was elated and quickly chose McKenna, the gymnast. We toted McKeena all over Manhattan. The rest of the day was spent playing and celebrating Lolly's birthday. Betsy made her a beautiful cake and she was not afraid to eat it. So sweet.
5. After church on Sunday we did a double decker bus tour of lower Manhattan. You could get on and off if you needed to shop. I loved it. I am kind of obsessed with the neighborhoods of New York and I wanted the bus driver to tell us every detail. I really want to do an even more intense tour one day when it is a little warmer. I am sure I drive Betsy insane with my, Who lives in this neighborhood?, kind of questions. (Selling New York on HGTV is awesome. Who are those people? Walking around the city at night, when you can see in people's apartments is awesome.) The only time we got off of the bus was in Soho and we stopped by Old Navy. Guess what? I saw three girls from Macon who were there on a girl's trip. Such a small world!
6. Monday we went to Queens to the Museum of the Moving Image. They had a Muppet exhibit showing and since our girls had just fallen in love with the Muppets from the latest movie, we all had a blast. I loved the Muppets growing up and even cried when we went to see the movie so I wanted to look at everything in the exhibit. This is not my usual behavior in a museum. They also had a big interactive section where you could make stop motion movies, do voice overs, apply sound effects, and add music to a scene from a movie. (I would like to thank Lee for keeping the little ones so we could just take the big girls. We were there for a while.)
7. After the museum, Lee took the girls to Hippo Park and I went to Central Park to run. That's right, to run. I always want to and never do it but this time I did. It was amazing. I went to the Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis Resevoir and it was heaven. I mean it. First of all, it felt good to run (it is 1.58 miles and I did it twice). It was a little cold but the view was insane. Here I was in the middle of the city, running around a lake, with the beautiful buildings all around me and the sun starting to set. This is the picture I took with my phone while actually running. (And yes, I did think about Charlotte, Miranda, and Carrie.)
8. Betsy said she could tell a difference in my demeanor after my run. Not that I was in a bad mood before, but she could just tell I was refreshed. Note to self: exercise at Tybee and you will stay more mentally stable.
9. So we got back on a Tuesday and on Wednesday I went on a field trip to Atlanta. Can you believe it? It was a good gig because I didn't have to ride on the bus and got to ride with a bunch of moms that I like but don't always get to spend time with. While we were eating lunch at The Varsity, I had a conversation with another mom about really knowing our children's love language. I used to think that was all so hokey but now I totally buy it. For example, I think Emory's language is physical touch. That is not really how I show her love. I probably give her more gifts than touch because that is what comes naturally (my boys are easier for me to touch). On our New York trip I really tried to consciouslly think to touch her. I would tell myself, "Hold her hand. Rub her back. Let her lay in my lap." I hate that it doesn't come naturally, but grateful that I am aware and can put it into practice.
10. I have the flu. I am too old to have a fever, right? Whenever I was sick my Nana would make me soup, and then probably a pile of food for when I felt better. She always showed love through cooking and it was hard for her to give that up when she went to live in an assisted living facility. As I was craving some of her vegetable soup today, I dreamed she was in my kitchen cooking. She will be 91 in May and was always a wonderful example to me of how to open your home and use food as a way to minister to others.