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Monday, December 12, 2011

The teenagers

I'm surprised by it!
Amazed by it!
Shocked that I'm going to say it.
But so thankful that I feel this way.

Here it goes...
I absolutely adore teenagers!  And for the most part, I really have enjoyed parenting them.
When it's good, it's so so good.
And when it's bad... well it's just about as gut wrenching as anything that I could have ever imagined.
Sunny, Liv, and Patch are now 18, 15 and 13 years old.
I've had little ones in my home for 18 years now, and taught 4th, 5th, and 6th grade back in my working days. But I had very little experience with teens.  And frankly it scared me a bit.  All I remember is high school, and honestly that was a trying time.
So I still find myself surprised at times that I am really enjoying this season of my parenting, a time when there are 3 teens scratching each other's eyes out co-habitating under our roof.  We've had some rough patches.  And I'm sure there are more hard times before us.  Times when we aren't sure which path they're gonna take.  It's hard to watch them fall.  So hard to watch them hurt.  And even more glorious when they pick themselves up and are all the better for it.  When they learn from their mistakes and become better.
As parents of teens...
we settle a lot of arguments.
we negotiate.
we spend a lot of time together.
we learn to speak in a quiet voice.
we say I'm proud of you.
we pick our battles.
we praise and praise and praise some more.
we respect their privacy.
we constantly reiterate our expectations.
we check on them constantly in a variety of ways.
we try to set a good example. 
we listen.
we say thank you.
we emphasize character.
we pray for them.
we pray with them.
we hold firm on our consequences.
we think out of the box.
we make mistakes and say I'm sorry a lot.
and we genuinely like them!
Sunny, Liv and Patch,
Thank you.
Thank you for some of the best years ever... some of the hardest and most wonderful years ever.  Thank you for forgiving my shortcomings.   Thank you for growing into young adults that I am so crazy ridiculous proud to call my children.  Thank you for tolerating my singing.  And dancing.  If you weren't my children, I'd still want to be in your lives because you are all that.

Sunday Snapshot


  1. this post is completely unacceptable because you did not give me your lighting set up or tell me what you did for backdrop etc etc etc.

  2. Oh they are certainly gorgeous your teens!!
    I must confess, I love my teens to pieces but can't wait til we get past the teenage years. Once they start driving they're never around, seriously do they really need a life??Can't they just stay home??

    God bless they are all a precious gift!

  3. Staci--
    This is going to show you how much I don't know or have.
    ---Opened front door.
    ---Draped 2 bar stools with very wrinkly white sheet. (you can easily see the wrinkles. Which makes me giggle because I remember you saying you actually fold sheets and I just roll them up in balls, which produces wrinkles like this!)
    ---Lighting is similar to garage lighting, western exposure.
    ---Kiddo sat on the threshold of the front door.
    ---85mm prime. My only saving grace. All the way open.

  4. Thank you. That is all I needed to know. Cause if you were getting all fancy pants on me I was gonna get mad. ;) Awesome shots. Gorgeous kids. Someday mine will sit still, right? RIGHT??

  5. Also, I folded sheets before the babies came. Now I don't wash them at all. Now we just live in filth.

  6. Love this post!
    And wow, love the pics, too :)
    Let's hear it for teenagers!

  7. your teenagers are gorgeous!! I truly loved the teenage years one day and hated it the next haha. I really do miss those years just not the lack of sleep. I hope I do it better next time around!
    The funny thing now is all they tell me that I did not know:)

  8. Your children are beautiful! I love this post! I'm {secretly} scared of the teen years. This give me a lot of hope! I want to enjoy my children at every stage...even the hard ones. :) I'm going to keep your list of what parents of teens do. I love it!

  9. Such an AMAZING post!! I am really praying to like my teenagers too!! The pictures are fabulous - I love how you shot them :)

  10. Nancy, this is why I love your blog. I love and so appreciate your honest writing and how you capture your family through your beautiful photography and words.

    P.S: Livy has gorgeous eyes! I'm jealous! (All of your kids are gorgeous though!)

  11. I'm a little scared of teenagerhood. My girls are still very little, but boy, do they grow fast! >_<

    Your teenagers are so very beautiful. They seem like good kids, that listen to their mom. ;) God bless them and God bless your entire family. <3


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