Sunday, March 28, 2010

I'm back....

Today, I felt more myself than I have in a while. That's a difficult thing to explain. This past 3 months have been the hardest for me since our second was born. No one could have prepared me for the journey of the purchase of a home, it's renovation, a move from our home of 14 years, and the fixing up of said home for renters. That, and trying to remain a sane, kind, and cognisant mommy, wife, friend, sister, and daughter has pretty much pushed me to the breaking point at times. (Thank you everyone that has supported me in these last few months. It has been a roller coaster, and there were some unbelievably ungraceful moments along the ride. If you saw my not so pretty side, well then, you know what I'm talking about.)

Three years ago, I was snapping pictures of my beautiful little boy, reminding myself to appreciate every minute even if the beginning of his life was not the way I'd planned. This March, things are a little different, but I'm emerging to discover that we have acquired an incredible "new" home and I'm figuring out the rhythm of our days in this space.

Monday, March 8, 2010

Here's what I've been up to and where I'm going...

These are pictures of the home with the previous owner's things. This is what we saw when we decided to buy. You definitely had to have a strong imagination. I'll show you more pictures later, and you'll see what I mean.

Another angle of that same room. See the back wall behind the unlit lamp? That's one of the ones we ripped out.

We've learned a lot about home renovation. It's been a lot of hard work on our part to keep the costs down. The kids have spent the past 6 weeks engaged in imaginary play about every form of demolition and construction. They've even helped in parts of the process, picking up nails, bringing buckets of gravel, sweeping, and fetching. It's been the subject of hours of discussions.

This is that same room sans a few walls with sheet rock, paint, and oak floors. Can you believe the difference? This week we're moving, and it's slow-going and exhausting. We're still staining doors, and there's painting left to be done. Then we get the house we're in now ready for renters by the end of the month. So.... I'll be focusing on some other things for a while, but I promise to be back in a couple of weeks.

Six year olds are just the smartest, aren't they? She needs a little down time, and she makes it clear (more or less.) Easy peasy. I'm taking my cue from her (more or less.)

Wednesday, March 3, 2010

March Snow

Oh, why not? I'm laughing at myself for saying on Monday that I was ready to embrace whatever this week brought me. I didn't look at the forecast. Humph.

It is a beautiful one. Different from some of the recent episodes ... very wet, and falling off in great clumps. It is terrific for snow balls. Don't know what the bees think about all of this, though.

We actually had a lot of fun yesterday. It put the daily routine on hold again. Lots of playtime and crafting. Today is another day with no school. I'm starting to feel itchy, but every time I get grouchy, I pick up my knitting or put on some new music. I think we're breaking the baking fast and making banana bread today. Yesterday was several rounds of popcorn and Cara Cara oranges. Have you tried them? Amazing.

The biggest hit, beyond playing in the snow, was making horses from Ann Wood's horse template. She is such an incredible artist! I printed them on card stock, and both kids enjoyed coloring and painting. I made one too. Then, my daughter and I cut them out. We used craft brads rather than wire and buttons. These horses have provided plenty of entertainment in imaginary play. Their moving legs are just brilliant.
If you're running out of ideas, this one is well worth trying.
Edited: go check out Made by Joel; a friend turned me on to his blog in the comments for this post. You won't regret it!

Monday, March 1, 2010

Winter's wisdom

Yes, we had more snow this weekend. I'm getting very used to it. The kids and I went on a great hike with a friend that involved some ice skating on trails. We spent more time in doors than usual, but filled it with a little crafting, playing, knitting, and sewing. (Baking is out because I'm not eating any more treats. "Enough is enough!" says my waistline.)

It was kind of nice to admit to you all how sad and tired I felt last week. I didn't try to jump start myself. Instead, I just kind of let myself curl up emotionally; I was more quiet than usual.

With my children, I find myself acknowledging and allowing for their "not-so-pretty" emotions... sadness, anger, frustration, boredom. You know the ones, and they usually don't contribute to serene days. I love the moments of joy and laughter, but for every wonderful moment there is a not so great one sure to follow. I'm always reminding myself that they are little humans and that all emotions are appropriate. I work to help them find ways to appropriately express whatever their emotion may be.

Last week, I gave myself permission to feel the not so great emotions. It was hard. Mama keeps the show running, and my kids were keenly aware at times that I was feeling sad. It gave us openings to talk about that. It was kind of nice. I realized that my children's empathy and understanding are deeper than I give them credit.

Yesterday, I perused old files of pictures. I looked my babies' birth pictures, and everything after that. It was so sweet, and I realized that life is catapulting forward. Were do the days go? This one is of my little boy looking out at the snow two Februaries ago. I can remember him chanting "snow, snow, SNOW!!!" with all the excitement of new speech. That, and it used to be a spectacular winter event that RARELY occurred in these parts. Not this year, though.

So, this week, I'm open to experiencing all that life has to offer, easy emotions and yucky ones. I want to continue living intentionally and savoring my time with my loved ones. It is a precious event.

Happy first of March, to you my friends! Here's to Spring creeping down the path. (May she hurry it up, just a little. No pressure, or anything.)