(I’m hoping if I expect that last winter backlash… it won’t happen. After all, this was the year that my Jan. 30th birthday was 60 degrees, and it even set records in Des Moines! I know this doesn’t seem parenthetical, but I’m still in stealth mode in case the weather is listening).

I think it might be the weather, but things are starting to perk up a bit! A lot of my friends who previously had winter blues are on the up and up, and I am delighted to add myself to that number! I got the job at the tutoring center last week, I’ve still been subbing two or three days a week, and I’m still babysitting. I’m at an optimum busy scale I think; I have things to do, but I also have plenty of time to catch my breath 🙂

The past two days have been park days for the little girl I babysit. We went to a park she hadn’t been to before on Monday, and she had a fun time climbing everywhere, throwing sticks in the water, and exploring the “scary” bridge with me. She is so funny. When we went to the other park yesterday, we spent over an hour playing sailing ship which included repairing the boat, traveling to China then back to Wisconsin (clearly a fantastic vessel), and lassoing crocodiles, alligators, and sharks.

She is so full of energy and is so strong and fast for a kindergartner! It’s funny, but all the time I spend with her makes me think about parenting and the daily choices parents have to make concerning how they will affect their child’s upbringing. It’s things like, “Will I have patience for little hands and hearts that stray to what they shouldn’t?” or “Will I choose to put forth effort and enthusiasm to ensure my child knows they are loved not only by me, but by their heavenly Father?”

I know I’m still working on preparing for marriage itself, but I do want to use the time I have now to consider the rest of my life. I feel like this semester is an odd little pause before things start speeding up again. Speaking of speeding up, this next month and half will be a wedding shower sprint! Haha never did I ever think I’d end up with three showers and two parties. Believe me, I could not have anticipated the social ripples weddings cause. Beyond the getting to know my fiance’s immediate family and by God’s grace having the opportunity to demonstrate His love, I’m just now beginning to realize the magnitude of marrying into another family.

There are happy parts and rough parts, and even though I may not have to cohabit with all of my in-laws, I do feel very strongly that it’s important to invest time in getting to know people who will be in your extended family probably for the rest of your life. That’s why I’ve happily agreed to family gatherings, and now, a weekend with an engagement party and a bridal party. It’s Chris’s spring break next week, so we’re taking off this weekend to see relatives. I’m looking forward to a change of scenery, seeing my soon-to-be extended family, and flower girl dress shopping with my little flower girl from Chris’s family 🙂 I’ll see if I can fill you all in when I get back. Let’s hope this weather stays wonderful!


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