Lately my days with the kids have been really good or really rough. A few days ago I did quite a bit of journaling and note-taking to evaluate how things are going, what goals I have personally, for our home and family, etc. We’ve reordered our routines to line up better with where we want to be going. It’s been really rewarding to be focusing on those most important things. One of which is quality, quantity, hands-on time with my kids, and particularly some one-on-one time with my oldest.
If our day goes roughly “as planned” I have about an hour with her in the afternoon for some big-girl learning time or dinner prep or cleaning or whatever we need to do that day. It’s been pretty low key -no special planning or big crafting projects-, but our afternoons have been profoundly special all the same.
I’ve loved making lentil soup together in a hot July kitchen, letting her smell the olive oil, the garlic, the oregano – storing up each of her funny and precious reactions in my heart. She measures out 2 cups of lentils and we talk about how she wants to be the best chef, about how the onions turn translucent, then golden, about how we love making delicious food to care for our family and show people we love them. She went outside for a bit and when she came back in, the smell of our soup simmering delighted her and her flushed-cheek smile delighted me.
We read a book together one afternoon. She swept, I mopped. The next day I swept, she mopped. We folded towels. We squeezed lemons for lemonade (with strawberries in it to turn it pink, of course!) and listened to a sermon. She invited me to play with her dollhouse until her brothers woke up. :)
I treasure it, and I’m thankful for it. I love how our simple play or work together lends itself to the easiest, sweetest conversations.
There are days when I feel tired, overwhelmed and strung-out and like I’m no good at what I do…like I’m not “cut out” to be a homemaker, wife, mother.
But then, there are other days, when I feel the quiet reassurance that being here is a big deal, even if we’re just sweeping floors and talking soup. ;-)