Son of all suns, brightest star in the my galaxy, you light my heart during the darkest of days. Your smile, your kindness, your generosity and integrity inspire me to be a better mom, a stronger woman, a more loving human.

Daughter, princess of my youth, Queen of the Skipbo, you amaze me with your perseverance, independence, and creativity. Your vulnerability cannot conceal the strength of your spirit and leadership in your bones.

Today was a day completely dedicated to my kids. No work. No chores. No errands. No commitments (short of picking up goldfish food). The kids were the boss for the day. We decided to take each hour of the day and alternate who would lead the activities for that time. Hour one…“Toddlers in Tiaras” meets American Girl Dolls. Hour two…can you believe my daughter actually VOLUNTEERED to clean her brothers room? A miracle by no small feat. Hour three…Star Wars Lego building in record time. Hours four, five, six…hang out at the mall for lunch and a little window shopping. Hours seven and eight…ride our bikes to the park with dog in tow. And before the day ended I beat the Skipbo Queen in a hand of cards, played life size chess, drew two warm baths and pop quizzed on the 50 states.

These are the days I wish would never find its path to sunset. My mother once told me that she regretted not spending more time with me when I was a kid. On the contrary, I feel extremely lucky to have been raised in such a loving and balanced environment and have nothing but positive memories of the times spent with my mother and father. But, since my brother was quite a bit older than me, I didn’t have the same experience my kids have with each other. I learned to enjoy my own company. I think that’s why I easily adjust to the stillness of a good book.

I won’t get these days back…the days of my children’s youth so I vow to participate fully in their lives. For when I’m laying on my deathbed the one thing I won’t be thinking is “Gee, I wish I had spent more time at work or on the computer instead of playing with my kids.”