Saturday, March 2, 2013

My Little Helper

Until they realize what chores really are, most little ones typically enjoy helping their mama out, don't they?  It is not a surprise that Vienne was no exception.  Not only did she love to help out, but she just liked things neat and tidy and clean...for the most part.   

(this was her perch, from a very young age.  She would play, she would eat, and she would assist me.  I never thought it odd that my baby sat on the counter...until I had Ivy.  I would never even consider putting Ivy on the least not yet.  It's funny how instinctively you just *know* your children.  Vienne never crawled, so once you sat her in one spot, she stayed put.  Simple as that.  And, of course, I was ALWAYS right next to her, like in this picture.  Ivy is my little  She won't be my counter helper...she'll most likely stand on a stool next to me and help.)

(I love this video glimpsing into my earlier years with Vienne, in our home at the beach.  She's probably a bit over a year old, I think.  Here she is in her closet, organizing the clothes.  Oh.  My.  Word.  She had too too many clothes!)

(another sweet video of my Girl picking up clips and putting them into the jar.  She loved these little "clean up" activities.  She displayed her organizational skills and tidiness at a very early age.  And, please excuse my anal retentive nagging to pick up every last piece!  So funny to look back on yourself in videos.
Another thing I realized when just watching this video is how I really didn't worry about the possibility of Vienne putting these tiny pieces into her mouth.  She NEVER put things in her mouth!  She was that strange perfect baby, like that.  Now, I don't think I would even consider putting these tiny clips into Ivy's hair for fear that she would pull one out and put it in her mouth.  And, I play "clean up" with Ivy but never with tiny things like this.)

(those little rice puffs spilled all over the floor and she ran to get the broom...)

(I very clearly remember this one - we were out in the garage and she found a cleaning rag, picked it up, and started to buff the car!  I had to run and get the camera!)

(another favorite clean up game - I would spill the straws and she just loved to put them all back into the box.  And, of course, don't we all just LOVE her face, here?!)

(her perch, at the back of the sink, once she was walking.  Of course, I never left the side of the sink...but she would sit here and make "soup" in a bowl in the sink, while I cooked.  I LOVED having her right by me, watching me, and learning as I made meals)

(ok, so this is a pretty long and repetitive video...but all videos are treasures to me.  This one is funny in showing her neurotic cleanliness)

(Daddy's helper...putting caps on the beer bottles)

(baking cookies, together, this past summer)

(and, when we were done baking, she asked if she could clean the dishes!  Ummmm...Yes, of course!  How darling is she?!)

I don't have any other photos of her cleaning at an older age...but in the last year, she very much loved to dust and clean the bathroom sinks.  I would set the stool in front of the sink, give her a sponge and douse the sink with our homemade cleaning solution so it was safe on her skin.  She LOVED to clean and polish those sinks til they sparkled.  This past summer we had finally set up a loose chore chart for her.  I remember, at one point, she was trying to save up money to buy a new My Little Pony - Rainbow Dash.  She and I spent time on eBay trying to find the exact one she desired.  
I miss all of these little things...these normal things we do with little children.  Teaching them, training them, giving them goals, and rewarding them.

I am so anxious for these times to come with Ivy.  And, she is certainly proving to be my next little helper...

(this is Ivy, helping to put laundry into the dryer.  I put a little pile of wet socks on the floor for her, and she usually puts them in, one by one, ever so meticulously.  Just like her sister.)


  1. I love your blog, such a tribute to your beautiful little girl. Your words reflect your strong, endless, love for your darling girl. (And she really is absolutely beautiful!) Thank you for sharing your wonderful memories, and difficult feelings. Emily (I am just too lazy to sign in to my account *grin*)

  2. I love this post and the fact that Ivy is a helper too. NONE of my four kids are meticulous about anything. And of course I'm a ridiculously organized, can't-stand-clutter kind of girl. We're learning from each other.

    1. Really, Jodi? That's funny. I seems that both my girls have my meticulous organized nature....though, it doesn't just come from me. Mark is guilty, as well.

  3. Love your sweet helper, Vienne. She is truly such a special little girl. The counter sitting is adorable. Like a commenter in a previous post, I also have a daughter-crush on Vienne. You must be so proud of her and the person she is. I have tears in my eyes now... I have learned so much from this blog, and my relationship with my own daughter seems to have deepened to a different level because of it. I am so, so sorry for your loss. With love,

    1. I AM so very proud of her and I just so badly want people to know who she I am so very thankful that I have this outlet to share her with you. Thank you so much for such sweet words. I am so honored and blessed to hear how your relationship with your own daughter has already deepened. Every encouraging word means so very much.
      Love Jenny

  4. What a sweetie! I love her. Thanks for showing me all about her. I feel like I know her a little. Love you my friend! Hope the today is bearable and you will make it through. One more day closer to seeing Vienne! Lets get together soon

    1. Love you, too. Yes, let's get together. We will text.

  5. Dear Sweet Jenny,
    Again, I thank you for sharing your darling daughter. I commented awhile back a couple of times about my hope that in the future you might be able to write a book sharing your story for people who lose a child at any age, or under any circumstances. You would make a wonderful inspirational speaker I'm sure. I wish you knew the scope of your beautiful sharing and how so many of us have been touched by your story. I was so amazed at your translations of Psalm 43. I would love to be in a Bible study with you. Just last week, a member of our family lost her baby to an ectopic pregnancy. I hope this isn't too much information, but they had been hoping and praying for a baby for 8 years. Since this was their first, they still have yet to understand the grief of their loss. It made me think of you and you parents as well as we are all grieving the baby we will only meet in Heaven one day. I feel so connected to your blog and your story and I wanted to share my connection and my name with you. I met your husband as he was in my son Joe's wedding 10 years ago. I may have met you too. Again, I'm so grateful for your willingness to share as it helps with the grief that I'm feeling now. Bless you all and I'll continue to keep you in my prayers. Terry W.

    1. Terry ~ Wow, thank you for such incredibly encouraging words.

      I am so so sorry to hear about the loss of the pregnancy in your family. Thank you for sharing that with me, so that I know where you are coming from. Any loss of a child is just so unbearable.

      I was not at Joe's wedding...but I am guessing that it was Joe and Kristina's? We love them dearly. What sweet friends.

      Thank you again for reading and remaining connected. It means the world to me.

  6. Yes, I'm Joe's mom. I am so blessed with the sweetest daughter-in-laws! (Well needless to say, I have the best sons too!) I hope to meet you someday as well, as I do remember Mark being such a great guy! I will continue to read your blog because you are so inspiring to me. I'm a counselor at a Prenancy Resource Center so that has been the best volunteer positon I could hope for. I so appreciate your responses to messages and that you would take the time to do that. Many blessings to you and your family, Terry

    1. Well, I thank you, Terry, for taking the time to read my blog and get to know our Girl. It means so much to me when I hear of who is reading and grieving along with me. The support means more than anyone can know.
      Blessings to you, as well.