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It's been a minute since the last time I wrote. I suppose I used the holidays as an excuse to step away from everything and to just be. It's weird to exist within a time and society where it almost feels "important" to share about all the big events and the little events taking place in our lives. It's so easy to get caught up in what everyone around you is doing when it's all on display and so easily accessed. I like sharing about the things that make me happy and add a little color into my life but I also like being present in the thick of it. Maybe that's why I haven't gotten around to sharing until now. But also, maybe not. I don't really know because the last several weeks have been a blur.

We made our annual trip up to Salt Lake during the holiday season to see the lights around Temple Square. It's one of those things we do every year, just because. You know me, I'm all about tradition. We try to go earlier on in the month of December, though, because it tends to get very busy closer to Christmas. Our visit this year was exceptionally cold. We bundled Billie up in the coziest little stroller bunting but there wasn't much we could do to keep her hands warm, seeing as she was rather intent on removing her mittens each time we placed them on her. 

We met up with Jake, Brooke, and their cute kids (Taylor's brother, his wife/my bff, and Billie's cousins) when we arrived at temple square and enjoyed the illuminated temple stroll together. It was fun to see the kids interacting with the experience in such unique and different ways. I love that Billie has been blessed with so many cousins-- I remember growing up with a handful of cousins myself and the chaos we created together just so happens to be one of my favorite things about the way I grew up. 

It was surreal to waltz around temple square with a one year old when I could so vividly remember doing the same thing last year... but with a two-month-old baby. I think that's one of the things I enjoy so much about holiday traditions-- it's a perfect opportunity to reflect upon how much has changed over the course of a year. We have photos of teeny, tiny baby Billie at temple square and now we have photographs of curious one-year-old Billie at temple square too. 

Billie stayed up long past her bedtime that night (that seemed to happen a lot during the holidays) but she remained perfectly content as her eyes lit up with the reflection of hundreds upon hundreds of christmas lights lining every tree in sight. She'd babble enthusiastically and point her sweet, chubby, little fingers at anything that seemed to bring her a rush of excitement. Oh, how it warms my heart to see her grow... but OH how it breaks my heart to see her grow. I'm stuck in this weird mindset where I can't quite decide how I feel when it comes to the idea of my baby growing up. I'm stoked that she's growing and learning and changing but I also can't ignore the ache in my chest that constantly reminds me that one day she'll be all grown up. PARENTHOOD, MAN. It's a freakin' rollercoaster.

But I wouldn't have it any other way.


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