Last week was so amazing, we spent it at the prescott conference and it impacted me so much. It was also our very first conference without any children!! Okay, I seriously thought I was going to miss them horribly, but truth be told, and much to my chagrin, I didn't miss a'tall....seriously, besides the occasional pang of sadness I was really, REALLY, thankful to have time without them, so I could just hear a sermon (for once) and not do nursery, not feel the pressure off setting up a service, not try to snap out of mommy mode and into wife mode..(if you know what I mean).
My parents, who are superheroes, came ALLL the way down to chico, picked up the girls and went alllll the way back up to McMinnville...my mom took the week off and the girls had a jam packed week of fun...but then, it was back to reality for all of us.
I was obviously very happy to see my little monsters (er darling little wonders) again but man oh man, they are loud and chaotic and needy and well...children. So monday I was exhausted and spent the day unpacking/cleaning etc...then tuesday came around and man...I was ready to ship those kids back to papa and nana's house.
Do you ever find yourself at the end of the day, realizing you've spent it frustrated and upset with the kids, all you can hear is your own voice scolding and scolding and sighing all the live long day? You go to bed feeling like you've just failed as a mother, you suck at being patient, you suck at teaching them anything good, you just suck. sorry if thats a naughty word in your house, it really just fits the bill when it comes to how I felt.
I got up tuesday and it resumed, the scolding and trying to clean around the messy small children, and finally, I stopped. I stopped and looked at those big brown eyes, and realized, the house will always need cleaning, the children will always need schooling and scolding, the laundry will magically keep reproducing and I will never feel like everythings done. BUT! I will miss these days with the kids, as long and stressful as they seem, they will fly and they will be days that I will look back on and wish I had savored.
So at eleven thirty, I packed a lunch, I threw my hair up, and off we went. To explore and picnic the chico creek, to catch little fishies in the stream and learn how to skip rocks across the water....and I loved it...It was gorgeous and relaxing. I was struck by a thought as I soaked in the trees and the beautiful plants and birds, I watched the water flowing over time smoothed pebbles and stones...and I was struck by how, despite the glorious beauty all around me, nothing struck me more, gripped my heart and soul so completely, as my little children, these three small wonders running their fingers through flowing water, skipping rocks across a glassy pond, sinking their toes in the deep deep mud. To quote the famous Mr. Darcy of Pride and Prejudice fame, "you have bewitched me body and soul". And they have and do...
Here's the pictures from those happy two hours..