snow day//reset

We’ve gotten about a foot of snow over the last few days, which is oddly the most snow accumulation that we’ve had since I’ve lived in Colorado. The weather is just not what it seems to the rest of the country here in the foothills of Colorado. In the winter, it snows frequently, so it’s commonplace, and life goes on, but the next day the sun will come back out and melt away all of what happened the day before. It never lasts, and things rarely close or even pause.

But more than a foot of snow over a weekend is enough for a few things to shut down and for us to consider ourselves really truly snowed in. And it’s been great. Isn’t it refreshing for your soul to take a breather from being busy and just stay inside for the whole weekend? Throw open the blinds and watch the snow cover everything in white, and just take a moment for yourself. Or a few moments.

Today, on our last day of respite, Ailey woke up with a nasty cold/fever combination, so we’ve been in rest and recuperate-mode even moreso. We’ve been mending and hoping to contain the germs, but also just enjoying this much-needed slower pace. It’s hard to stop and take a moment to slow down when the circumstances don’t require it, but when they do, isn’t it great?

So, I’m thankful for the weather, and for the warmth of our home while it happens, and for a break.

a love story // 002

It happens quickly; the stereotypical whirlwind, this romance.

They are dreaming big and living small; far richer in time than money, which they’ll realize later is just downright wealthy.

They hold hands in the dark, fingers intertwined and talk about forever, which stretches far and away, the ludicrously distant future.

Their right now is filled with “one days,” and sometimes they forget to just enjoy the moment as it passes. But they’re learning each other’s ways and ever-shifting and changing. They’re making room for each other and rubbing off some rough edges. There’s beauty in the preparation to join one life with another.

He is strong and steadfast and she is flighty and fresh and together they move forward, coaxing the best out of each other.

reason number 657 why I love motherhood

Ailey is 16 months old nowadays, which means she is a hilarious, adorable, totally illogical, crazy toddler. I get that I’m biased, but hanging out with her is a trip.

She’s slowly amassing her vocabulary, which boasts some doozies like dog, mama, dada, and ball. Watch out, Mensa.

She’s even more adept at understanding what we say, which means we can ask her to do things and sometimes it works! I don’t know why this feels like such a huge, amazing accomplishment, and it may be because she’s our first child, but we have been in total awe of the fact that she’s old enough to go get things for us in other rooms. Seriously, minion, where have you been all of my life?

This weekend, she toddled past me, and as is wont to happen, she reeked. Clearly something major had happened in the diaper department. Trent was reading (read: playing Tricia Crack) on the couch a few feet away from us, so we both watched as I asked her to go into the bathroom and get a diaper. She totally did it!

We did that annoying thing parents do where they cheer for their kid for doing normal human activities and told her what a good job she had done, clapping feverishly. Then, I asked her for the diaper so I could change it and she held up the diaper, pointed right to Trent, and yelled “dad!!!!”

Then, she toddled right on over to him and handed him the diaper.

I’ve never been more proud.

my love/hate relationship with cliffhangers

I watch more TV than I like to admit, so I feel rather qualified to make the following judgment call: Pushing Daisies is one of the best television series that ever was.

The show chronicles Ned, a lovable pie-maker, with an odd ability to wake the dead for just a few moments. Naturally, he uses this odd power to solve murders.

The show is just the right mixture of quirky, serious, and hilarious moments and I absolutely loved it.

Sadly, as is wont to happen to shows I enjoy, it seems the series got cancelled before the writers were expecting. (MILD SPOILER) The last episode ends with an attempt to hastily wrap up the loose strings of the story, leaving us without the time to enjoy its full intended arc, yet we can watch season after season of Pretty Little Liars.

I’m not bitter about it.

I may or may not have watched all of those seasons and seasons of Pretty Little Liars, but that is beside the point.

Anyway, the final episode of Pushing Daisies made me sad, actually. I didn’t want to say goodbye to the characters or their stories yet.

I’d grown attached to them! I wanted to know more of the details of what happened, not a short little blurb outlining the highlights, nor a snippet alluding to a vaguely happy ending. Tell me more about their lives! Show me seasons and seasons worth of their misadventures. Come, dear Daisy-writers, sit with me and we’ll chat for hours. You can weave me the tail of their love stories over Arnold Palmers. I want to know.

The characters in the story are fictional, of course, so in the end, it matters little whether I ever know what (fictionally) became of them. Yet, I still think about it occasionally.

Even more so, I think about the real-life cliffhangers I experience every day. Did that couple having the really public fight in the grocery store work it out or pack their bags? Will the little boy in the neighborhood who knocked on all of our doors looking for his dog find him? Does it end how I think it does? Am I right that those two friends are meant to be together (why don’t they see it?!)?

And what does my story look like? Where does our family go from here, now that we’re hanging over the edge of our own proverbial cliff, left wondering how we got to this place we don’t recognize.

The non-fiction cliffhangers are worse, actually, because they have real consequences in our lives. It can drive a person crazy if you let it (I only let it sometimes).

But, this is one way that God speaks to my heart, because he is the author of each of these stories and he knows how much I love a good one.

He knows the resolution of every story and one day, because he’ll tell me, I will too.

So, when the days get long and hard and the edges of cliffs loom with too much unknown, I can cling to the hope of one day finding out the beautiful resolution in every story about which I’ve wondered.

I have a feeling we’ll be able to see the whole thing–how it played out beginning to end. Its beauty will be obvious–woven by a master storyteller, whose hand shaped the character and the events, many colors combining in one glorious masterpiece.

And we will think how we should’ve seen the hand of the storyteller all along, that he was there weaving, crafting, shaping as we went along, even when things took a turn we weren’t expecting or the situation seemed desperate.

Even then, we’ll be able to look back and see that it all turned out even better than we could’ve imagined.

And the best stories never are that predictable anyway.

when the bummer sets in

2015/01/img_1093.jpg

Today, I woke up feeling existentially bummed. I think this is part of the gig sometimes, this mom (or maybe everyone and I’m just a mom) thing. More days than not lately, I wake up earlier than I’d like to and certainly earlier than I need to, feeling physically sick and emotionally drained and over it before “it” has even begun.

Today was one of those days.

Then, inevitably, I realize I have a bad attitude and I’m not being patient with a tiny toddler who is just learning how live in a world that’s not her size, who can’t articulate that or much of anything else well at all. And I kick myself, because I’m missing it.

Some days I am so egregiously missing the point. Because on the days that I start complaining and bummed, are days that I’m focusing all on me. And I am so not the point.

And maybe instead, the point is that others’ needs are more important than mine, and that my attitude is evident in how I approach those needs. Maybe the point is that mothering is hard work, there’s no denying that, but that preserving is for when it’s hard and that’s meaningful. Maybe the point is that God is shaping me every day, slowly rubbing off sharp edges and making me grow.

So I can be grateful in the mundane, hard, and downright awful parts of this life, because the point is bigger and even aside from that, there is good here, now, that I’m not stopping to notice because I’m too focused on me.

So, I let this truth roll over me instead of staying bummed and noticed that my cutie baby/toddler daughter is big enough to sit on a stool next to her daddy and learn from him. I notice that my sweet husband took hours building shelves that he knew I’d adore and that I hadn’t properly thanked him for them, even though they’ve been done for days. I noticed that the sky is big, and I could drink in the sun from indoors, as bright as it is here, something I take for granted all the time.

These things are all good, even when I’m not feeling well.

These things are all good, even when I’m so tired I can feel it deep.

These things are all good, even when our lives are upended and nothing we’ve been clinging to is certain anymore.

God is still good, after all. And he made all of these things.