March 22, 2018

Everyone's at the Table

There's a reason we call her "everyone's baby."
You're likely here because you know me in some capacity - in person, across a preschool playground, online, from college, from the sound of my snort-laugh ringing in your ears around town...

As such, you unlikely know what our family looks like today. It's tough to miss us, both because we're noisy and because there are so many of us!

If you'd only followed me by blog, however, my three-year silence ends today with a sizable, 30-pound update. Her name is Mae.

On February 15, 2016, the day after Mary Brooks turned four, our missing puzzle piece made her debut. Margaret Ilse Smith charged into the world with all the purpose and speed she currently displays in her daily laps of our home - and only a smidge less arm-swinging and attitude.

Mae is named after two of her great-grandmothers. She's the second Margaret Smith her daddy has ever loved and the fourth generation of Ilses on my side. I know she'll wear her full name proudly, but to most who know her now, she's "Mae-Mae."

I'm often asked what it's like to have four children. For us, it feels like all our people are here; everyone's at the table. There's a completeness we never experienced before Mae came crashing into things. The cockiness we had juggling three children is gone as well, but that's another story for another day.

Mae is "everyone's baby." She has brought out sweet, nurturing, servant-hearted sides of Mac, Brooksie and even Chapman. It's a precious thing to behold.

She's freshly two and received the memo early on about what this milestone entails. We're testing boundaries, lying on the floor, giggling one moment and falling to pieces the next. Through it all, she has three older champions and protectors who advocate for her in every situation. She's going to be spoiled rotten, y'all, and it won't be one stitch of my doing!

I can't wait to tell you more about Mae and about how far we've come in the three years since I stopped putting virtual pen to invisible paper. For now, though, this will have to do.

Talk soon, friends! Or - most likely - future Anne scrounging this blog for memories of the years that sped by far too quickly...
How old are these smiling Smiths? Two, four, six and eight.
(Who do we appreciate? Gooooood sleepers!)

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