[Quiet Thoughts] Remember the Simple Things

Photo: Today is a perfect day to break out one of the beach sunrise pictures I took last September. First of all, there is snow everywhere here in Massachusetts and I’m already sick of looking at it. Second of all, it is perfect for the beginning of my post. Third of all, the camera on my phone really sucks and the picture that I took of this morning’s sunrise came out blurry. I guess that should probably be the first reason?



I watched the sun rise over the eastern horizon this morning. My back was screaming, my head was throbbing, my task list was long… and yet, I smiled.

The sunrise represents a promise fulfilled every single morning. When I see it, I enjoy it the way I would the smile of a close friend. It makes me think of my favorite line of church service: “The Lord bless thee, and keep thee: The Lord make his face shine upon thee, and be gracious unto thee: The Lord lift up his countenance upon thee, and give thee peace.” (Numbers 6:24-26)

And in my stresses this week, I’ve done my best to indulge in the simple moments that make these labors worth bearing. Like looking at the house, the yard covered in snow, the roof bringing down icicles that come down to the windows. The barn looking picturesque with its snow-covered roof. Watching the snow turn into sparkling powder when I kick at it. (then I remember that it’s ridiculously cold and that I hate winter so I run and find a warm place to hang out.)

I’ve also noticed changes in the boys this week–specifically, the two of them are figuring out how to play together. They’ve figured out how to build a tower together and then knock it down. Ursa Major has figured out that it i is more fun to share spaces and help his little brother into things like boxes and baskets rather than to make him cry. Twice this week, they created mega forts out of the boxes that have come into the house or the laundry baskets that have made way too many trips up and down the stairs this week. They are learning that they can wrestle for fun and not over toys… they are learning to be brothers. It has been something really special to watch.

Ursa Major has also had an evolution in language. Taking on a lot more of the sophisticated language that he hears. We’ve been struggling with “please” and “thank you.” Mostly, “please.” When he has been asking for things, he hasn’t said it, and I’ve been responding with: “I don’t respond to demands, sir, I respond to requests.” It isn’t like he hasn’t learned “please” before, but for some reason it hasn’t stuck the way I’ve wanted it to. I need it to come naturally without any prompting. And I want it to be consistent at home and at school, with any adult that he is with.

At first, this was very confusing for him. We had to learn the difference between the two. It took the better part of the week to really get him to “get it.” Yesterday evening, as I was on my 5th box of the day in the kitchen, Ursa Major walked up to me and said the best thing ever: “Mama, I’m making a request.”

“Oh? And what would that be, sir?”

“I would like Tree Fu Tom, please.”

“Yes sir. Thank you for your request. I’ll get right on that.”

It was all I could do to not dance to the remote. So perfectly perfect.

I know that the boys don’t understand what an extraordinary year that it has been for us as a family. But this was a little, simple victory. A show of low that I appreciate. It was also a moment of motherhood for me: Ursa Major will be 3 next month. Three. He’s such a first-born, so eager to please, yet so rebellious and inquisitive. Watching him learn and explore emotion this year has been frustrating yet fascinating. I know that having a three year old and a two year old at the same time will be one of the greatest challenges that I’ve faced yet. However, I am beyond excited to watch him continue to grow. Especially because his favorite thing to do now is to ask “What happened, Mommy?” I know that this will, in a few months, develop into “why?”

and then I’m gonna refer him to his Father for all answers to all questions.

And did I mention that he is starting to sound out words?

Ursa Minor, too, has been exploring language. Full sentences, that one. Most of them being “I want [insert verb here] or [I don’t like [insert anything here] or [No, stop it!]… Most importantly, he is asking a lot of questions. “Ohhhh, what’s that?” And pointing. Oh, and he has memorized some of the pages of his favorite stories, so he is reciting as I’m reading. Crazy!

As much as they drive me crazy (at this moment, they are running through the living room and the kitchen, yelling), taking a moment to realize that my little babies are turning into boys. Babyhood is going to become boyhood soon. Especially for Ursa Major, the day is very fast approaching.

But today, I’m indulging in the simple. Snuggles with my youngest, who still thinks my lap is the best place in the world. Evening hugs and kisses as now requested from my toddler. The laughs and squeals of wrestling toddlers. The boo-boos that can still be healed by kisses.

And the promised sun rising over the eastern horizon.

I’m still here. I keep writing that because I have to remind myself in written form. There has been a few times this month when I looked around and didn’t think I was going to make it. But I’m here. We are 7 days away from living in our house. The home we worked so very hard to get.

But first, in-laws.

So you know what that means? Oh yes, it’s gonna be a week of good posts, I’m sure.

Because nothing inspires more than the stupid crap my in-laws be doin’! And already my brother-in-law is on my nerves. Lordy.

It’s Friday. Fridays are for simple things. A kiss on the cheek. A giggle under blankets. Hot chocolate while gazing out over glistening snow. A hug with a squeeze. A sigh while in the arms of a loved one. A cold beer and well-crafted comfort food. A whispered “I love you.” A moment to mark the passing of time, to realize that we’re just a little bit older, that the world has changed. Fridays are for love, light, and joy.

Next week is Christmas week. I still plan to blog, though I might take Christmas off… depends on the in-laws and just how crazy things get. Friday might also be a difficult bloggy day, too. Let me see if I can get some stuff in the can. Maybe I’ll blog on my usual “off” days? Tuesday and Thursday next week? Hmm…? I don’t know. Anyway, I’ll check in at least once next week. It’s the right thing to do! The bloggy thing to do!


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