Wednesday, May 22, 2013

life, at its pace

Well, I guess a whole week has gone by since I posted last.  Much of that week was spent outside in the sun and rain with dirt under my nails. 
There were dandelion crowns to weave (for a favorite chicken, of course),
  blossoms to be gathered, and chicks to be admired.
 Our chicks are almost 4 weeks old.  They've hit that awkward phase of growing big-chicken pin feathers and still having downy lil heads.

 There was a play to perform,
and grass to be mowed.
 I spent a lot of time in the garden.  It's not quite half way planted, but sometimes it goes like that with a three-year-old-helper, and plenty of distractions.  My garden is haphazard and full of worms, glorious and from-seed, weedy and wild and all around worth it.

  Sometimes, Ayla set up shop while I worked, but mostly she wanted to be in the garden as much as I did.
 I have plenty of extra seeds and extra seedlings, so the 'help' can be low stress.  When I first had kids, I pictured us all gardening together, happily and productively, maybe singing while we planted.  Ha!  Expectations, right?  The bigger girls were in and out, playing wiffleball, playing on the Wii, snacking and squabbling and playing some more, but Ayla, she stayed the course.
 And actually, she did sing sweet little lullabies as she tucked her seedlings into the soil.  "Grow sweetly, li'l one, la di da, I'll tuck you in."  They might be all mixed up, out of row, with herbs and beans, grains and flowers, veggies and berries growing where they will, but they are well loved so far.
 On the hottest day, there was water and bucket play, spun round and round and over the head,  which led to questions about centrifugal force and gravity.  

 There was a day in town for errands, class, park play with friends,
 sandhill cranes, and a ride on the Merrimac Ferry to carry us home,
 with an extra passenger for a sleepover.

 There was a day of rain to soak the new seeds and for adventuring in.

I do believe they were prepared to live in the forest as they set off that rainy morning with their faces painted, a bow and arrow, extra clothes, snacks, water, stuffed animals and a blanket, but the sleepover eventually had to end, as they do.

Expectations and tidy gardens, be darned.  Life, at its own pace, naturally, where the joy can be found.

Actually, I think my favorite moment of the whole week, was a quiet one indoors.  Ayla had been sick the night before, up all night, and the next day she was much better, but wiped out (me, too).  I was standing by the computer, holding her, listening to songs by Medicine for the People.  She wrapped her warm little arms and legs around me and I held her and swayed for a looooong while.  She still felt so tiny, her little three-year-old body felt effortless to hold.  I breathed it in, this moment, knowing that my baby-having days are behind me, I held on to her smallness and just breathed it in, mindful and grateful.  I don't want those moments to go unnoticed in an effort to do more.  I will sacrifice more productivity, more output, more finished products, for more attention, more mindfulness, more love, felt and shared and expressed.

*By the way, this is my 450th blog post.  450!!!


  1. Loved every bit of your 450th post! I know what you mean about breathing in the smallness of our littlest one and cherishing them! Love, Laura Raye

  2. great reminder for me at the end. it's ok to sacrifice productivity for more attention and love! lately, i've been comparing my oldest to some girls her age that she is in gymnastics with. they are a little younger and reading fairly fluently while mine is not. i have to remind myself that that is ok. we spend our lives together and that is what matters. my kids are happy and that is what matters.

  3. Thanks, Laura! That littlest one in your family sure is a sweetheart. Give her an extra hug for me.

    Megan, your kids always look so well-loved and happy in your photos. I'd definitely take that over reading fluency any day :). My 6 year old isn't reading yet, but I have no doubt that when she's ready to put it all together, the things that she's learned up 'til now will help her decode the words. There's such a range of ages at which kids learn to read whether they're in school or not.

  4. I might quote you there. I'd like to remember the "in an effort to do more" part.

  5. I'm glad you found it meaningful, Bethany. Please feel free to quote me :)


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