This week we are recovering from yet another couple of illnesses and bracing ourselves for a long stretch of bitter cold and SNOW! Right now the snow that my kids have been hoping for all winter, is falling. I am originally from the deep south, and have a love-hate relationship with snow, though I appreciate it more every year. During the winter, I sometimes feel a bit trapped by the walls of our house, and it’s easy to start dreading the moments rather than appreciating them. Those are the times when I very much feel that saying that though the years fly by, the days can be long. The second half of winter sure can make a big family in a small house feel awfully stir crazy!
In an effort to make our days feel more deliberate, and less chaotic (dirty boots, throwing up, runny noses, laundry out of control) I’ve been trying to figure out how to make this coming stretch of very cold, snowy weather less of something to dread, and maybe something that we will remember one day with, dare I say, fondness.
We’ve rearranged our living room, the only truly warm room in the house as it holds our woodstove. If we lose power, it will be the only room that is bearable. A friend recently gave us her small, round kitchen table, and it is now tucked in a corner for projects or school work. I’ve actually packed away the few toys that were out, save for a small basket of wooden blocks and animals. Sometimes less is more. The couch is covered in wool blankets and we have plenty to read.
My hope is to spend lots of time under those blankets reading aloud. If I’m lucky I’ll do a little bit of knitting. I finished Simmer Dim over the weekend, and cast on another project. I’ve been promising to cast on hat projects for both girls, so they will have something to keep their hands busy while I read. Yesterday, I sat down and read a sweet little book cover to cover that I’ve been meaning to read to my kids for months. That simple act made me feel so good. I love that about being a mom. That there are days when all you can do, and all you really need to do, is set most everything aside, and do the simplest thing: snuggle up and read a good book to your kids, and everyone ends up feeling better.
My kids are my biggest blog readers, and they come here to remember milestones and events, so I better make sure I record them:
-Last week we celebrated Keats’ twelfth birthday with his favorite foods for breakfast and dinner, lunch out with Jonny, and not a single gift to open. His gift this year was a kayak, his only request (a big one at that). The gift was found on Craigslist the week before and was pretty much impossible to hide. This may be the year of the kayak in our family. Everyone wants one.
-Job at 15 months has three words: “Dada,” “Mama,” and “Nuh-nuh” Nuh-nuh is used in reference to any food, and also to the “nuh-nuh” side when he’s nursing. Night weaning efforts have improved things, but have not been a complete success due to illness and reality.
-Silas has been giving himself little haircuts here and there lately. He brought me a long lock last week saying something like, “Here mommy. I cut this for you. It’s special.” He knows I saved a lock from his first haircut. He assumed that I would like more of his hair for my collection, I guess. His hair has been such a disaster lately that I decided to basically shave it. I think his change in appearance was initially traumatizing for the rest of the family, though I love the attention it brings to his face. I LOVE his face and all his hilarious expressions.