I feel like this whole month
I just throw stuff in the van as we run off to slather on sunscreen and splash away glorious summer hours, filled with little buddies and blue skies until we come home exhausted with pinkened cheeks, smelling of bugspray, and lil' boy sweat, as I throw the same stuff outta the van. Swimsuits, and floaties, lawn chairs and umbrellas, sad buckets and baseball bats. The paraphernalia of summer.
The props for our summer play.
Today though, after a pretty rockin' night (of Aaron up at 3am, McKye, who's mastered the art of demanding "hot chocolate milk!" while I'm sure he's still dead asleep, and Levi deciding he needs our king bed all to himself again) we declined invites to park hop, to swim, and to even go to the circus and just stayed home.
I've been packin in the Summer-fun pretty tight, loving that I don't have a babe in tow (on my hip or inside my womb!) but I think we all needed a day of regroup.
I got cranky last night. While I'd been living life in my swimsuit and sunglasses, my house was feeling neglected, my scriptures had been a little too rushed for a little too long, and as a result I just was feeling run a little ragged.
In rearrangign our downstairs so Ben's brother could store his furniture here while he serves his two year mission in Africa, we found water damage. Combine that with my dishwasher acting up on top of the garburator we just got fixed and the mouse pad on the laptop seems to be getting finicky... I suddenly felt the fragility of our comfort.
And it made me stop.
And think about what I have. And what I need to not over look.
And so instead of writing my long over due post on our PEI trip, I felt like I needed to take this rare sliver of quiet and be grateful.
Grateful for friends who share their snacks with my kids and their hearts with me.
Who I wish I was better at serving, who comfort and validate me so perfectly, but who when it's my turn, I often feel I don't know how to help, so I try and just listen.
Friends who will happily bring their kids over to my messy house and sit on my crumby couches and don't judge. Cuz they know, it's just impossible some days.
Friends who let thier eyes well up with mine as I blubbery tell them how long I've waited to watch one of my kids run off with friends...real little buddies, instead of orchestrating "appropriate socail peers".
Grateful for freinds who care about mothering as much as I do, and worry about it too. Friends who are willing to text me in the morning and ask, "So, what we doign today?"
And who let me bale somtimes, without holding it against me.
Easy-- there for ya friends, who help me think out loud so I can figure out what the heck I actually think. Who know I will do the same for them. That we can jump in the car and by the end of a good drive feel like we figured out life again. That we sifted threw all the half thoughts and unrealized concerns and found the essence of what we want and what we know is right.
So grateful for friends.
Grateful for a hubby who does so much and works so hard and balances out his wife so well.
Grateful for a hubby I can flirt with (I know you'd never think it, cuz we're so non-PDA!) and that I can talk to. I love that he listens to me when I get crazy and tells me I'm doing just fine.
Grateful for his friendship and his forgiveness and his patience (like when I can not for the life of me stay awake to watch anything past ten o clock!).
I'm grateful for my kids.
For Aaron who makes me take nothing for granted and pushes me to my emotional limits and who continues to teach me the mysteries of love that I thought I already knew, but really had no idea.
I'm grateful for Levi. How I can't even look at his sun-bleached hair and his baby thighs that run and jump in such boyish ways, without my heart just gushing with love. Loving every stage. Loving how he reminds me of all my boys, mixed into one and yet his own distinct character. And what a character. So bold and daring, so playful, in his moments of deliberate bashfulness, so carefully contrived to win hearts. Grateful he snuggled in so well in our little established family, filling us up and filling us out with his eager grins, and knowing eyes.
But these are the obvious. Family, friends.
Marrow to the bones of my life.
But I'm grateful for lots of little things too.
Automatic doors on my van.
Toe nail polish. (Thanks Rebecca ;)
For yellow pants ya didn't think you could pull off, but friends made you buy anyway.
Sister in laws who tidy the house before we come home
and work themselves into the diaper rotation.
Long distance phone plans.
Shade. Under trees and trampolines.
Dry shampoo. (Rebecca, once again;)
Straws and cool liquids when my brain starts feeling a little fried.
And how much laundry I can shove into my washer.
Scriptures that expose my soul to it's own desires, good and bad.
Memories (and picture to help retain them!)
Raspberries. (aren't they the best?!?!)
Music that makes me run faster, and lyrics that make me feel deeper.
Books that inspire me.
People who hold up a fortitude and courage for life, that make me want to find the kindness and joyfulness they have reached. Who don't even know I'm looking.
Fans for hot bedrooms.
And purses that hold a lot.
Cute shirts and that I didn't end up totally regretting that I cut bangs.
Instagrams that make me smile. Even when they're of strangers.
And random Facebook messages from people who read my blog that make me want to keep writing.
Cereal for dinner.
Mostly, I'm grateful for the way gratitude tumbles and grows and gains momentum, til you see everything with a grateful heart. Until you're grateful for the every heart beat, every breath, that we're granted to learn and grow in this life.
Even for every ache and discomfort that leads to grater empathy and a grander perspective.
So today, when we are all too sleepy to be splashing, I am grateful, grateful this is my life, despite the sleepless nights or rough housing that inevitably ends in tears, despite feeling ridiculoud that after cleaning for an hour straight, I can still feel so irritated that my freezer is such a sticky-melted-popsicle-mess!
To remind myself to breath and remember, I am blessed.
So very blessed.