Tuesday, October 23, 2012

The Scent of Adventure

Two weeks into school and I was finished.
I hit the wall in September that I don't usually hit until June.
Not good.

I love home schooling my children. But what started out as a fun adventure had somehow morphed into a crazy Ben-Hurish chariot race. Through the years we've quadrupled our number of children that need to be educated, we've added several instruments (with lessons!), not to mention ballet, basketball, art, Spanish, Friday School, etc.

I sat Dave down, on the Friday night of the second week, and told him I was pretty much finished.
He was unsure of how to take this.
He thought maybe he should quit his job and help me.
This scared me into clearer thinking.
My thoughts were that we should chuck everything extracurricular.
Toss it.
Who cares that we've invested thousands of dollars into lessons? So what that we bought Avonlea a harp? Why does Craigslist exist if not for the superfluous harp?
Dave and I hit these thoughts back and forth rather like a lame game of badminton when suddenly, he scored. "How about asking your mom to help?"
The room pulsed with light for a minute as we paused.
My mom will be 72 next month. She still works full time and then some. Maybe she'd like to retire to my house? Hmmmmm.
Dave pounced on my uncertainty, "Go down and ask her right now." (She lives next door).

I went. I asked.
She replied, "Can you hold on for two weeks so I can give my notice?"
I fainted (in spirit if not body).

Apparently she was ready to retire, ready to jump in and help me out for a bit, ready for God's next adventure for her. However, I'm not sure who's in for the bigger adventure, her or I.

We are in our third week of togetherness. Rowan and Rose climbed into bed with me this morning and I inhaled and had an urge to throw them in the frying pan and saute them with some onion. Upon questioning I discovered that mom's been slipping them whole pickled garlic cloves. They eat them like candy at her house.

Last week she told me to clean up the Lincoln Logs and I had a crazy urge to tell her that Rosy spilled them and not me! Why should I have to clean them up! It's not fair!

She drove the kids to piano and sang Jewish songs in Hebrew at the top of her lungs the whole way home. The children were slightly traumatized and only agreed to go with her again if she gave them more pickled garlic. It's a vicious cycle my friends.

Rowan asked her if she was alive when Pompeii was buried. She wouldn't answer him. He was rather offended. "I still don't know," he said sadly.

All in all, I feel like this is how life was meant to be lived. The stories she tells, the songs she sings, the garlic she propagates, all add to the richness, the fullness, the aroma of our lives. There is a circular sense of rightness. There is a give and take that is generous yet careful of boundaries.

The wall that I was hitting has disappeared and life is a fun adventure again.
And I feel what I sometimes only know, that God loves me very much and he cares.

"Rosy if you get off of me I'll give you some pickled garlic!"

Sunday, October 21, 2012

Hours Gained

I sat on a moss cushioned log.
It was beautiful and surprisingly comfortable.
The stream gurgled beside me and I
I heard the boys upstream building a dam.
The sounds of a dam being built are chiefly
laughter and puppy yaps.
Rosy cleaned out a tributary downstream.
Her voice, clear and high as the autumn sky,
"Summer's over, now it's fall, just the nicest time of all."
I smiled and watched as a sudden pant of wind
rained golden leaves. Her voice pipped again,
"Down, down, down, leaves of red and gold and brown,
come falling, falling down."
Eventually she joined me on the log, leaned into me,
golden head on my arm.
An afternoon passed and I gained
the hours.
I held the autumn wind in my hand for a moment.
The stream paused in it's rippling journey and I felt it's stillness.
A five year old remained inactive next to me.
Miracles surely.
Later that night there would be cookies and stories.
Grant would tell me, "It always feels like Christmas when we're with you."
And even later,
I would lean my dark head into my husband's shoulder,
and listen to the rain on the roof.
And sleep.
Rowan and Gypsy

Dam building!

Rose on the log waiting for me!

Story time!

Harvest time!

The exceeding beauty of the earth, in her splendour of life, yields a new thought with every petal. The hours when the mind is absorbed by beauty are the only hours when we really live, so that the longer we can stay among these things so much the more is snatched from inevitable Time. -Jefferies

Sunday, October 7, 2012

Isn't She Yummy?

Rowan turned seven with a very big bang.
A treasure hunt led to a puppy.
The yummiest, darlingest ittle silver lab.

At night, there was a party with family.
Pizza. Cupcakes. Gifts.

A big boy was tucked into bed with a little silver dog snuggled in his arms.
"Daddy, can you die of excitement?"
Practical Dave replied, "Yes, if you have a weak heart, you could die of excitement."
"Do I have a weak heart Daddy? Cause I'm really excited."

Rowan was assured of the strength of his heart. He and a little dog named Gypsy Pepsi (don't ask) fell fast asleep.
And they lived happily ever after.
The End.

Thursday, October 4, 2012

Making Time

Dave told me an itinerary of things he needed to do, things that bulged his hours to the breaking.
I reminded him of one he had forgotten, one he had no time left for.
He paused a minute then said, "Well, I'll just have to make time."
A little boy, never far from his Daddy, looked up with question marks for pupils and asked, "HOW?"
How do you make time?
What tools do you wield to fashion an exquisite hour?
4 years old

5 years old

6 years old

7 years old
My pumpkin baby turns 7 this week.
His mouth is full of random sized teeth. He likes to use every roll of tape in the house to "create". He never puts the toothpaste away. Or his toothbrush. He's his Daddy's shadow.
He wants to know how to make time.

I can't tell him that.
But I can tell him how to make his time count.

I can tell him that every minute spent seeking God counts.
Every hour given to serving another counts.
Every day that sees him growing, soul expanding, counts.
The moments of prayer, the hours of agony, the tears, the laughter, the life, lifted up to God, counts.

And really, all of these 7 precious years, have been spent teaching him how to make time, how to make his time count.

I can't wait to see what God makes of this child.
I am so thankful for the Grace that gave me a front row seat.
And I praise God in advance, for Rowan's life, full of days that count.


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