My oldest is speaking a made-up language. It sounds very much like each word is being spoken through a mouth that is simultaneously trying to sneeze. She has it written down, and is trying very hard to make Elijah learn it. He keeps strumming on my guitar, the new-found chords finding a home in his brain and fingers. A few days ago I left my winter coat at a store, forcing me to go shopping for another. So I spent the other afternoon shopping with just my boys. This was an exceptionally fun experience. They tried to convince me to get a brown leather jacket. “Just like Amelia Earhart, Mom!”
I didn’t, but sure loved our time together.
Yesterday when Nadine and I were out by ourselves she said, “Mom, remember that poster you showed me once? The one with all the faces that said, ‘This is a man’s day, and this is a woman’s day?'” I nodded. We looked at each other and laughed.
It’s all you can do when a morning has gone the way ours just had. In a nutshell:
I woke up, and somewhere between math lessons and reading stories out loud, I became overwhelmed and convinced the walls were literally closing in around me. Gloves left out, little pieces of trash, random articles of clothing, pencils, and marks of salt throughout our entire downstairs tipped me over the edge. It didn’t help that the time-consuming task of making freshly squeezed mango juice was ruined by the simple knock of an elbow. All that deliciousness, wasted on the floor.
If I had recently mopped the floor I would have licked it up like a tropical-fruit-starved animal. However, since I can not remember the last time I mopped, I licked the counter instead. And then mopped. Delicious. It was also almost the only sweet spot of my morning. We bulldozed through math conversions, borrowing, and reading about Paul Revere. Then the sensation of our house shrinking started to come over me again and I found my secret spot to cry and reflect on how fast five children can create messes. Unfortunately, on the way to my secret spot I had to surmount an obstacle course in the hallway and a very very messy bedroom which had just been clean twelve hours ago. That did it. I snapped a picture and sent it to my even-keeled husband with this text:
His reply? “In order to manage well you can’t get sucked in too much emotionally. Love them, lead them. Don’t get bogged down. That’s a small problem. I love you SO much!” His steady response led Nadine to her observation of how Matthew’s day might be going in comparison to ours.
We are so very thankful he is back from the tundra of the North. He and a few co-workers traveled to Warroad, Minnesota this week for a couple of days of training. We were itching to take a road trip while he was away, but with temperatures in the negatives and the heat on the fritz in our van, we decided to stay close to home. Betty learned where Minnesota is on the globe, though! Matthew had his fourth and final infusion this week. We still aren’t sure if it’s helping at all. He feels pretty similar to how he felt before he started.
Elijah is doing archery and even split an arrow with one of his shots last week! Hot tea, school work, fruit arrangements, Valentines day roses, and sledding has filled the crannies of our week. The girls were thrilled with their bear and moose hats from Minnesota.
Even though February cabin fever has hit us with its full stomach-churning blow, we dust ourselves off, put on our snow suits and go sledding. When you can’t beat winter, embrace it. I am so thankful for these five little adventurers, trekking this beautiful life alongside of me. Salty snow footprints through the house and all.