happy valentine's day!


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this morning on my run, the lyrics of a song coming through my headphones made me all goosebumpy.

suppose i never ever met you, suppose we never fell in love, suppose i never ever let you kiss me so sweet and so soft
suppose i never ever saw you, suppose you never ever called, suppose i kept on singing love songs, just to break my own fall

with that music in my ears and as i let the cold london air run through my lungs and my hair, i felt excruciatingly grateful for my forever valentine - that we did meet, and that we did fall in love! on a california beach at sunset, i let him kiss me so sweet and so soft, and i was hooked from that moment on. we (eventually - ha!) chose each other, and committed to sharing our lives forever, and created a family - and made two little boys! oh, there have been a lot of ups and downs in our relationship over the years, but through it all (and because of it all!) we have a really, really great love. 

i was that annoyingly quixotic teenage girl, breathlessly daydreaming of romance. i feel like so many people warned me that falling in love “wasn’t like in the movies.” and when i fell in love for the first time i decided that i agreed - not like the movies at all ... but way better in real life. then, when i fell in love with ian i was genuinely shocked that the experience was that much sweeter and more exciting and amazing than any other romance i’d experienced before.

i believe in true love! it is real magic. i am so, so, so glad to be living my own epic, unique, really tough and super awesome love story.

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i also believe in the immense power and beauty in non-romantic love. there are as many forms of love as there are moments in time, and they are all awesome. this february fourteenth, i feel filled to the brim with love for my parents, siblings, dear friends, new friends, in-laws, baby boys and lots of random humans from all over the time and space of my life that have inspired me and enriched my life.

all that is to say - i love valentine’s day! and i hope everyone reading this has a really happy day celebrating any and all kinds of love. how great is it to have an excuse to reflect on and revel in the love that truly is all around us in this crazy world?! give some hugs and kisses and thank yous today … and eat lots of treats! 

{as part of my celebrating today, i dug up a few of my favourite photos of me and my forever valentine! i was planning on quickly picking like ten to share and then ended up with many more…whoops!}

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love you forever, ian wright! our hearts were made for each other’s - yours and mine. 

ten thoughts on a wednesday |29|


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baby boy is moving around like craaaazy these days and I love feeling him move more than most anything in the world. it is still so surreal to me that we are having another baby (and that it’s a boy!). it’s all so different in lots of ways the second time around. one of my goals this week is to take some “bump pictures” because i don’t even have one photo to show this little guy what it looked like when he was in mom’s belly. #secondchildproblems? 

i’ve been feeling so far away from family and life-long friends the past few weeks. i think the cold, darkness, surgery, sickness and general drag of january just brought to the surface the “homesickness” that is usually buried under lots of awesomeness in my heart. my sisters and mom got together for a weekend in california and i just had to lay in bed crying about that for a little while. a close old friend is getting married in utah and many of my family members are gathering in arizona this weekend. it just sucks to miss out on this stuff. i love, love, love living in london and i really feel like my life here is incredibly wonderful - but being far away from loved ones is difficult. 
today after running some morning errands, i was surprised to see a package addressed to moses in the mail pile! it was a padded envelope full of valentine’s goodies from my sister shawni. opening this up with little mo honestly made me cry. it just meant so much to me that my sister and nieces would go through the effort of sending it to us. these kinds of tiny happy things make the feeling-so-far-away experience soooo much easier. 

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while ian was away on a work trip last week, i ended up reading a bunch of old blog posts and emails (it is legitimately hard for me to fall asleep when he’s not next to me, as silly as that sounds!). i think it’s so important to go back and reflect on the past occasionally. by the time ian got home late on thursday night, i was ready to just smother him with cuddles and kisses and never let go, feeling so grateful for him and our love story and that we have each other forever. there is valuable perspective that comes from the past - and the present, and the future. 

parenting is so much trial and error. ian and i have realized this past week that we needed to course correct on something and that has been kind of painful in a unique way. it’s overwhelming to think about the responsibility of raising a human being (let alone multiple human beings…) but i guess all you can do is your best - just keep trying and reworking and messing up and making up. 

ian takes moses on a “daddy date” at least once a month, and this past saturday - after realizing they wouldn’t make it to the imperial war museum with much time to explore before mo’s nap - they went to burger king. haha ... moses’s first experience at a legit american fast food chain. ian snapped these photos and it looks like they had a blast :) 

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in a class at church the other week, the teacher shared the marriage advice her grandmother gave her just before the wedding. and this was it: james 3. when the bride pushed grandma to elaborate or provide any sage council beyond that, grandma insisted that was all she had to say. 
govern the tongue. shew out of a good conversation your works with meekness of wisdom. 

bawled through the episode of this is us that i watched a couple days ago. if you watch the series, you know what i’m talking about (and if you don’t, you should! i hardly ever get into tv shows, but this one is seriously moving, inspiring, uplifting, wonderful - i love it). after it was over i immediately sent ian a text that said “i love you sooooo much and you can never, ever die!!!” life, and especially family life, is so very precious. watching something like that just makes you want to hold on to it all so tightly and well. 

i had the opportunity to speak in church two weeks in a row (with two different congregations). i gave essentially the same talk both times, because i really felt impressed that the topic was an important one for all to ponder. i spoke about becoming like a little child, as christ and his prophets repeatedly admonish. in the two and half years we have lived in london, i’ve gained a lot of close experience with children - becoming a mom and working in primary at church … and through that time with babies and kids i have learned so much about jesus and about finding joy. in my talk i mentioned the following qualities that i’ve noticed in children that help me to understand why we’ve been counseled to be like them:
—— simplicity / innate, easy love for jesus and for others / spontaneous delight and wonder / believing hearts / curiosity, observation and love of learning / friendliness without bias or judgment; willingness to show love without inhibitions / forgiveness and lack of holding grudges / imagination and a belief that anything is possible —— 

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i’ve found that the quality of my days - the likelihood that i would say it was a great day - is pretty much directly proportional to how much time i spend looking at my phone. i am really focusing on mindful use of screens lately. 

several blog commenters mentioned that they enjoyed the post i published about my normal days recently. that made me wonder if there are any specific topics you all out there in cyberspace would enjoy or appreciate me exploring on this blog (or just stuff that would satisfy any curiosity…?). leave me a comment here and let me know. 

happy wednesday! life is beautiful. 
{artwork by caitlin connolly}