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A Family Update

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{photo taken by Jenna Spurlin}

I recently wrote a post titled My Journey From Hobby Blogger to Influencer, and talked about how this blog is my recipe binder, my memory keeper, my cancer journal & a place to connect with such a great and caring community.  It has certainly become something very special to me and my family over the years. It is especially comforting as a 2-time cancer survivor that my words and our memories are in a place where my 3 girls could easily access them and know the things I think about and am passionate about.

This post is one that I am writing just to capture this season in life. I find myself with 3 teenage daughters and I wonder where the time has gone? When did this happen?

I don’t write as often about my girls now that they are teens.  It is a delicate thing, letting their stories be THEIR stories & not oversharing.  I will be doing a dance with this delicate sharing in some upcoming posts where I will write about a teen parenting class I have been taking.  It has been so good and has really helped me embrace these years and realize just how wonderful they can be.

But for now, I’m just going to share these family photos with you and try to take a ‘word snapshot’ of my 3 lovlies and their sweet lives.

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{photo taken by Jenna Spurlin}

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Teagan

My firstborn. My overachiever. My hard worker. My heart. You can find her most nights leaning over textbooks with pens, pencils, a water bottle & snacks diligently studying. She is 16 & a sophomore in high school, is a cross-country runner, & is super involved as a leader in her youth group. She has always chosen great friends to hang out with & is wise beyond her years. She is very self-aware, knows her strengths and weaknesses, has a beautiful thinking brain, does not like a lot of emotional fluff, & finds humor in so many things.  She usually has a smile on her face and I marvel how it rarely goes away…she has this amazing ability to smile even while talking. It is her default face and it is beautiful.  I find myself trying to hang on to every moment, as I know we only have a couple of years left with our girl.

Colsie

She is my red-haired beauty & my hero at age 15. Life has given her some great obstacles the last few years but she has come through them with grit, perseverance and a resilience that I am just in awe of.  She is incredibly creative and musical and has a love for instruments including the violin, guitar & piano.  She has a soft heart that cares for others.  She is very in tune with the emotions of others and will be the first to ask “are you ok?” when she senses something is wrong. She, too, has a wonderful friend group & is truly a great friend to others.  I have always called her my creative, caring, kind, quirky Colsie & even as a teenager she still is all that! She will frown at that ‘quirky’ word, but I love that she is unique and delights in things that are not always mainstream. Case in point? She is going ‘hammocking’ with a friend after school today. She saved money to purchase this awesome portable hammock,  (affiliate link) and she and her friends will just take their hammocks and ‘hang out.’ It cracks me up.  They are also going to take some photos while at the park, as Colsie is a very gifted photographer.

Avery

Avery is 13 and in middle school.  The strong will that we saw when she was young has chilled out into something so wonderful. She is the perfect balance of soft and strong. It is quite remarkable to watch. She is a very determined, gifted and self-motivated student, a great soccer player despite the challenges that having asthma brings, is a super talented baker & loves watching recorded tv with her Dad. She is not one who needs a ton of friends. She is a good friend to a select few, and truly just loves being at home with her family and ipod. She is a friendly introvert. She gets that beauty is fleeting, even at a young age, and I wonder if she knows how beautiful she really is? She is a bit of a tom-boy, but one who always has her nails polished with quite impressive DIY designs. She plays the piano & usually practices without needing a reminder.  Avery loves one-on-one conversation and will often come sit on my bed in the evening just to talk, or will become quite chatty at the breakfast table each morning, which makes me smile.  She lives for holidays, as they give her an excuse to bake something great or come up with awesome gifts for those she loves. She also values family, as her favorite place to be is at her Grandparents house, jumping on the trampoline with her cousins.

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So there are my girls in a nutshell, at this stage in life.  Notice there is much positive and no negative, which is not reflective of how it really is. Yes, there is so much beauty and positive, but there IS a reason I’m taking a teen parenting class! The teens years can be hard as kids are discovering who they are and parents are learning how they must parent differently, and how to let go. There are personality differences which can create much static and drama, especially with 3 girls! We are not the perfect family, so far from it…but I do feel like we are all learning how to love well & I know God will continue to show us how to do that, despite all of our differences & shortcomings. This is my daily prayer. We have come through a lot together & I celebrate that!

I have to mention my man before closing this family update.

My Todd.  

Steadfast, loyal, loving, wise. He serves all of us ‘girls’ with humility & consistency. We all know we are his priority & that he would do anything for us. He spends his days working hard for our family and never complains.  He is in full-time ministry and does work every day that is meaningful and makes a difference.  He lives for family nights and junk food on the weekends, and the occasional date night with ME. I am a very, very blessed woman and I’m so thankful to call him mine!

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If you have made it to the end, then I must thank you for reading this.  I am so very thankful for this space to record things that matter to me, and the fact that you come along with me in that means the world to me! Thanks for reading New Nostalgia!

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What about you? Are you a parent to teens? What are you learning? Got any tips for me?

 

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