Thursday, April 29, 2010

My tug-of-war with young motherhood

I'm not a baby person. Just give 'em to me at 6 months, I've always told people. When they sleep a little better, when they don't need to eat every 2 hours, and when the guessing game is a little more informed--when I can tell a little better just why it is that they're wailing. I try to endure the frustration, the exhaustion, the never-ending giving of babyhood and I look forward to the time when the night-wakings will end, the trying-to-get-them-to burp will end, and so on and so on. I look forward to them getting older.

Yet last night as H fell asleep eating and then out a big sigh and snuggled his little head into the curve of my neck, I held him there for a while. I breathed him in--that smell of baby shampoo, the softness of his cheek, his fine, wispy hair tickling my nose. At nine months old, he doesn't snuggle much anymore. There aren't many moments in a day or a week when he lets me cuddle him close. I wanted to slow time down and delay the endings and the growing older.

It's birthday week at our house--Mister's was 2 days ago (which I will eventually blog about, I'm sure!), and Sweetie's is on Monday. On each of their birthdays, I hold them close and tell them the story of when they were born. And inside my mind, I think back to that day--was it really 7 years ago? Was it really 5 years ago? It seems like just the other day that I was willing the difficulties of their babyhood to end. And now they are well into the journey, marching ahead to the day that they will leave our home and forge out to make homes of their own. So on birthday week, I feel the tug back again, to slow time down and keep them close.

It's a tricky thing, this mothering, a tricky tug of enduring and relishing. I'm still trying to figure out the tug-of-war. But I'm oh so glad I get to play.

Wednesday, April 21, 2010

Sweetie, Inducer of Parental Humility

Sweetie: "Mom, do you have another baby in your tummy?"
Me: "Um, no."
Sweetie: "Well, it sure looks like it."

Sweetie, holding up a "spring green" crayon: "Mom, what color do you think this is?"
Me: "green yellow? yellow green?"
Sweetie: "No, it's spring green. Did they not have that color when you were a little girl?"

So, apparently I am old and fat?

Monday, April 19, 2010


I subscribe to the better-late-than-never philosophy in life, which is a good thing, because I am chronically late. So, an Easter summary: we had a great Good Friday potluck lunch with friends. Our friends dyed eggs, but we were late--this time because of H's 2-hour allergist appointment rather than because of my own misguided I-think-I-can-get-one-more-thing-done-before-we-leave attitude. So we dyed eggs at home. On Easter morning, we ate cinnamon rolls and finished our last Easter week activity before the kids hunted for their baskets and ate probably 2 lbs of candy while watching our church's General Conference broadcast. After conference, we headed to J's sister's house for a delicious dinner and egg hunting. It was a nice, relaxing day.

Wednesday, April 7, 2010

Kissing and Growing up

Every once and a while, I'll have a day where it sinks in that, somehow in the process of breakfasts, cleaning, making lunches, walking to school, driving to T-ball, my kids are growing up, growing older. Today was one of those days.

Mister decided that he is growing too old to give me a hug and kiss before school in a place where his friends can see. He's now resorted to in-the-privacy of the van or the before-we-turn-the-corner-to-the-bus-stop kiss.

Sweetie decided that she is growing too old for the single life. When I picked her up from playing at a friend's house today (a friend who happens to be a boy), she informed me that she and Duncan were going to get married because they went on a date to Duncan's club and they kissed, which means "True Love," that they promise to marry each other, and they can't change their minds. When I told her that it's not a good idea to kiss people not in our family and that she needs to wait until she really loves someone, she said, "But Mom, I really really love Duncan."

And little H decided that he is too old for those boring baby toys. The lamp, the plant stand, the cord to the piano light, the cardboard box in the corner, the garbage, and the drawer under the stove with the pots are all more his style.
1. The smell of orange blossoms, 2. A quiet morning, 3. The anticipation of a trip

Monday, April 5, 2010

Just in time for Easter

We found out that H has a severe egg allergy, which might explain the general sleeplessness, the constant upset stomach, the fussiness, the 5-6 bowel movements every morning, the rashes around his mouth, the occasional welts on his body, etc, etc. I'm glad to have an explanation. So, hopefully, he'll outgrow it between age 3-5. Until then, I'll probably wean him, I'll try out some egg-free recipes, we'll carry an epi-pen, and the only Easter eggs he'll be eating will be plastic. So far, he's okay with the plastic eggs:

(And he's in his jammies thanks to an Easter blow-out.)

Poem of the Month: April

Coming fresh out of Easter and my church's General Conference, I thought I'd be early with the poem of the month. One of the things I love about this poem is that the persona seeks the Landlord himself and goes to much effort to find Him, which for me is symbolic of how it should be in my own life. Also, the abrupt ending of this poem always impacts me. The Landlord's response is immediate, and the understatement of it contrasts with how grand and how crucial the Atonement really is.

REDEMPTION. By George Herbert

HAVING been tenant long to a rich Lord,
Not thriving, I resolved to be bold,
And make a suit unto him, to afford
A new small-rented lease, and cancell th’ old.

In heaven at his manour I him sought :
They told me there, that he was lately gone
About some land, which he had dearly bought
Long since on earth, to take possession.

I straight return’d, and knowing his great birth,
Sought him accordingly in great resorts ;
In cities, theatres, gardens, parks, and courts :
At length I heard a ragged noise and mirth
Of theeves and murderers : there I him espied,
Who straight, Your suit is granted, said, and died.