Sunday, February 3, 2013

Calm, Storm, Calm, Storm ...

The weatherpeople were actually on to something last week and just like I had hoped, we woke up to snow last Saturday.  It was glorious and so seasonally-appropriate.  We spent a relaxing weekend at home which extended into a slightly-longer weekend when Monday started with an ice storm that caused Daddy's work to delay opening for 3 hours.  It was a dark, stormy day.  Perfect for cuddling by the fire with a book and some crochet work.

And then Tuesday came and brought along a heat wave (by January standards), and we were all surprised to find we didn't even need to wear coats to pick Jack up from school.  I sat outside all through the kids naps - watching diapers bleach in the sun, finishing up my book and hoping to bake the snot out of my sinuses.  We spent the post-nap afternoon outside at the swingset, jumping on the trampoline and taking wheelbarrow rides while I restocked all that firewood we'd burned through the previous day.

I was all set to clean and organize on Wednesday, which had dawned dark and foreboding, but after running out to fetch the newspaper I discovered that it was 60 some degrees. I quickly pushed aside any plans for the rest of the day, sent the kids to find their shoes, and threw some PBJ sandwiches and any other portable food into a bag as we loaded up the minivan.  The park was surprisingly crowded, apparently everyone had the same idea as us.  But we had a wonderful time!

Picnic in the trunk!

"Look Mama, watch me! Watch me Mama!!"

It was dark and windy the whole visit, but it never rained once. And it was still warm enough to be outside without coats.  The kids were excellent - it was one of those rare days where they were kind to each other, good with others and obedient to Mommy.  I couldn't have asked for better!  My only regret was that I had dressed Julia, the crawling, climbing 15 month old, in white before I knew we'd be playing at a dirty, muddy park.  Oh well, her evident excitement at finally being big enough to climb the playground by herself was more than worth it!

This kooky weather has also brought on some colds for Jude, Julia and I. Nothing major, probably one of the easiest colds we've dealt with.  But that might have also had to do with my love affair with Vitamin C, echinacea and eucalyptus essential oil - in the humidifiers, in the steamy bath, and on a tissue that I'd inhale through whenever I was so inclined... My husband laughed at my nightly ritual this past week - warm eucalyptus bath, book on the Kindle, crocheting in bed, and lights out early.  But after just a few days we're nearly snot-free!

And I can't help but think this past week has been an allegory for these nearly five years as a mother.  It always seems to me that we enter a lull in the months leading up to a new baby.  A period of (somewhat) peace - my youngest sleeps well, she's growing more and more independent.  And while she doesn't let us leave her in the church nursery yet, she has started wondering off farther and farther on her own and away from my ankles - to the den to play with the boys, out the back door and all the way down to the swings (in just her socks!) before Jon saw her out the window, and all the way back to the Sunday School hall in church in the few seconds it took Mommy to put her coat on today (um, mini-panic attack on my part when I couldn't find her).  She's growing and changing, that's for sure.

With my newfound freedom I have time for hobbies and projects, time for lots and lots of books, time to plan and relax.  Oh, and time to clean.  Like mop under the rugs and furniture clean.  And my boys - there are days that go so well, where my kids are all best friends and get along swimmingly, days where I feel that a newborn would be an easy addition ... but not yet.  I plan to enjoy these days of almost *almost* having things together.  I've got this small sliver of time where my kids are all at an age that I'm comfortable leaving them for a few days, and it just so happens to coincide with our 7th anniversary.  So plans are definitely in the works for a kidless romantic interlude this spring.

Oh I'm enjoying this period, breathing in these recent months, willing myself to give in to elusive me-time without feeling guilty.  Because it won't last forever.  In fact, the day after that warm, wonderful day at the park ... it snowed.

It grew dark, and cold and stormy.

But it was oh so beautiful.

Because as much as I thrill in a warm, relaxing day, I also love a good and gorgeous snow storm.

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