Well, I guess you see where I’m going with this. Xander, meet the world…
Pudding Pop, Squishy, Squirmy Wormy, Chunky Monk’, Duckie, Demolition Debbie (we’ll get into that one day), Princess, Stink Bug, and of course… Xander Pander. To each a reason, and to each a story. But, a rose by any other name would smell as sweet… at least I remember a guy saying something of that nature at one point in time. You see, this is a kid that noticed things all around her very early on. And from that ‘early on’ (she’s still only 3 at the moment) she did everything in her power to get to the action, and she still does to this day. She was up to a horizontal waddle by the age of six months, steady crawl by eight, and standing by the very last week of nine months old. By the end of that week she was fully walking. Not only to get there to see the action, but to be a part of it; she has to be the CAUSE of the action! And may the Lord help anyone that stands in her way. She’s a girl on a mission to explore and discover the world around her, and through her eyes may we all see the one around us just a bit differently with the new and bright perspective of the most innocent among us… through the eyes of a TENACIOUS three-year old.
Hi, I’m Mom (you can call me Amy), and I am more than blessed to be Mom to this absolutely amazing little girl and her amazingly awesome brother and two sisters (you’ll meet them along the way). I don’t tell my kids they can become whatever they want, right out– only what they set their minds to become; if they want it then it requires a certain thought process to pursue ‘the process’ of succeeding any goal they set in life. And because of this philosophy my children have a very peculiar outlook on life and the world around them that I’m sure you’ll see come out as you join our family on this journey; one that is unique and even rare, if I do say so myself, and one that will take them far in life well equipped for the mental demands thrown their way as they go. I love my babies dearly; I cannot breathe without them… yes, my oldest is fifteen; yes the other two stand at the threshold of the insanity that is puberty… simultaneously; yes, I love to write as a way to escape the nightmares of three-soon-to-be-teenagers; yes, I still refer to them… TO THEIR FACES… as my babies. And guess what… They…. LIKE IT! (OK, self-conscious justification over)
The last of a dying breed, this man is. He reassured this ol’ heart of mine that chivalry is still holding on to life. That right there, alone, exudes such a beautiful standard for our little ones to hold; with three out of four kids being girls, it is truly a blessing that this man stands in place of what their future standards will be measured by. A firm hand with a gentle touch, Dad (you can call him TJ) brings so much stability and structure to our little Xander Pander’s life; that of which is already molding her to become a great woman one day. He shows her every day that her Mommy is loved, by which she will know how she is to be loved one day when she is grown. Dad still holds a great spark of wonder for this life that has set her little heart ablaze with curiosity for it as well. His patient nature has provided room for our Xander to explore and test all that’s around her without fearing the worst from failure, nor failure itself. Dad is truly the source of our daughter’s inquisitive drive, and it is this drive to discover inside this 3 yr old that will surely take the world by storm.
A Wonderful Wonder
I noticed as I’ve gotten older that the memories of my childhood have become fleeting. And as I’ve grown older, I, myself, and the world around me, have taken on a more cynical nature. Things aren’t as carefree as they used to be. We tend to forget what it’s like to see the world through the eyes of a child, even more so AS a child. I want to bring that back with this blog; bring back a sense of child like wonder when stepping out into the world around us. It all started with a recent vacation trip to Myrtle Beach, South Carolina…
A much-needed break… first one taken in a little over 2 years. Everything set, and the vehicle is loaded down with some very sleepy and high-strung souls. We were determined to get out of here… just for a day, a couple, a week. Reservations ready and waiting, and the boys (our fur-babies Barkley and FatBoy) anxiously pant for the car ride ahead of them… Oh where will it take them? And off we went. The road trip playlist was kicking, a very well blended mix of Beach Boys, Sublime, and a shuffle of various other “beachy” types of melodies, as we cruised further and further into the horizon… Or was it our world behind us that faded further and further behind it? Not saying we were desperate to get away, just simply needing a recharge… However you take it, we were glad for the break.
We arrived about mid day to perfect weather, little traffic (pre-vacation season-early May, perfect time to visit Myrtle Beach, by the way), with plenty of time to grab lunch for everyone before embarking on the fiasco that is unloading an SUV loaded down for a week-long vacation at the beach… plus 2 dogs and a toddler with a 2 1/2 hour car ride worth of pent-up energy . So we finally settled in. The dogs’ cages up and in place, luggage unloaded to the best of our ability, and the three of us trying to decide what to do…. Evening walk on the beach it is… We loaded the dogs back
into the car, Xander Pander in her seat so excited to go to the beach, and off we went. The commencement of our vacation was official.
Deciding which direction to go, we head down the coastline to the sound of waves kissed with an angel’s laughter as our daughter played a game of tag with the ocean. The dogs desperately wanting to run watching Xander at play and Mom and Dad loving every moment to the fullest of everything it could ever hope to be. It. Was. Perfect. Then, it happened.
Our child saw the moon cresting the horizon for the first time like she had never seen before in her short life… and it took her breath away. She actually gasped. She called out in pure glee to me and Daddy, “Look, look! Look at the moon, Mommy and Daddy! It’s amazing!
It’s absolutely beautiful!” (which for a few passersby, that just floored and tickled them to no end)…… You’ll come to see that for such a small person she has a very big mind… she actually talks like this, and it just amazes everyone she meets.
Watching her observe something that I have seen so many times for so many years being raised in beach communities as a child, awakened something in me….. I was no longer in awe of the world around me. I no longer found the simplest beauty in it anymore…. to be amazed by the rising of an evening moon, to see the wonder of it, became so precious to me to the point that I felt ashamed for having taken it for granted my whole life. To see the beauty of wonderful wonder in the eyes of my 3 yr old daughter captivated me to embark on a journey to seek out this life and the world around us in a whole new way, with a whole new perspective, with a whole new appreciation for the glory and majesty of it all. And with that I invite you to take this journey with us as Xander Pander, Mom and Dad seek to discover all that this crazy life has to offer in hopes that you too will begin to see your world through the eyes of a child once again.