Thursday, December 27, 2012

I Rather Love This Lot

This boy of ours isn’t exactly small, but, apparently he is . . . small enough. Small enough to fit nearly his entire body into our guinea pig cage. Jesse alerted me to Anders’ contortionist like shenanigans. As disturbed as I was by the sight, I imagine my alarm was no worse than Jumpy’s – whose only possible sanctuary (a green, plastic, igloo-shaped home) had been thrown out by the incoming giant.

I love every single thing about this sturdy and compact little child. I sometimes think a 20-year pregnancy wouldn’t be too much to ask for a reward like him. I suppose that is a strange thing to think, but, there aren’t really any logical and normal ways to think at all about how very much I love and adore that boy. Logic and “reasonable” can’t really contain it.

And speaking of little folks who make me want to pass out because it is sometimes altogether too much to love people so . . . big . . ly (bigly? Yes. Bigly. I realize that is not a word. Perhaps I might have tried something like “tremendously”?). Anyway, speaking of:

It snowed approximately three-hundred feet here yesterday. I’m only estimating, of course, but I think it was about that. Yes, 300 feet. Maybe 400. You can imagine what shoveling must have been like (once we’d tunneled out of our house), so I was rather pleased to have it all taken care of by Abe.

Really, it did snow non-stop the entire day. It was awfully nice to have nowhere we had to be. Around noon Abe and Daisy went out and shoveled together (with a little help from Penny). Abe went out and did it all over again at about 5:00 pm. Then this morning he spent THREE hours shoveling. THREE HOURS!

Now, before you all start calling me a terrible slave-driving mother, I ought to let you know that I only actually asked for shovelers the first time (when Penny and Daisy lent their hands). Abe shoveled the other two times all of his own accord. In fact, I called out to him multiple times to come in and call it good, but he pressed on – spending the bulk of this morning’s shoveling clearing the enormous pile left across the bottom of the driveway by the snowplow.  Bless his heart. I bought him a candy-bar later to thank him. That’s something I suppose . . . for hours of freezingly miserable labor.

It seems for all my life I have been trying to figure how to keep little ones occupied and content while I either mow or shovel. I can’t get over how lovely it is to have that burden no longer solely my own.

Wait. I need to add here that I do have a very able and hard working husband – one who is more than happy to shovel or mow when he is here. But because he is so very often not here – when shoveling or mowing really need doing, it has loomed over me these many home-owning years.

There. Enough of that. Only . . . I can’t help but notice that I just talked about loving my kids to practically bursting and all of that . . . but only pictured five of the six. Oh dear. I assure you I am just as tied up inside and in love at the thought of Jesse (pictured here with cousin Miles and aunt Shannon). But he had no interest in going out in the snow today. “It’s too cold,” he told me, and went back to setting up a small toy catapult.

All the time I wonder about him – about who this little boy of mine will be when he is all grown up and has been able to follow his own pursuits with out mom telling him he can no longer scour the garage for tools, or dad telling him that taking that item apart will break it for good. It is literally almost giving me physical pain trying to keep pulling words out of myself to somehow express all of this. It really is too much. I better stop. I know you all understand what I mean and how impossible it is to say anyway.

Only . . . Jesse. Jesse with his scrappy little skin-and-bones body, Jesse telling me, “Mom, I don’t only love you a little bit!”, Jesse begging to take Mike’s new haircutting kit to bed.

Nothing must ever ever happen to this boy of mine. It simply could not be borne. Having all these little tiny moments that are so my Jesse with out being able to see the end? Too too horrible. I love him.

I love them all.

Those little stinkers.


The End.

Christmas –- Come and Gone

Well, Christmas has come and gone, and heaven knows where I’ve been.

I suppose bustling about doing Christmassy things. . . . Though what those things might have been, specifically, escapes me.

As I mentally rewind through December, I can, with effort, push the pause button and catch an occasional concrete glimpse of something -- Daisy singing in her school’s choir concert; me piling “art supplies” – a last gift still needing crossed off  – into a cart, or making a list of grocery items for the different dishes that wanted bringing to various family parties. I can see our kids and their cousins looking in little windows at Christmas Village, and our Christmas tree poking out of the truck bed as we drove it home; but it takes work to see those details. Mostly I just see a whirring of red and green, lights, wrapping paper, decorations and six little faces; and know that it was predominantly happy but feel a little guilty for not having each and every detail of it set firmly and lastingly in my mind . . . or, even here, on my blog.

It shall ever be a mystery to me why it is that I can find so much to write about when there is nothing particular going on but can barely manage one flitting little post when life is full of significance and happenings that should be placed securely in our family’s safety deposit box of memories.

Perhaps it is because life’s little day-to-day happenings aren’t expecting a big to-do. They are only pleasantly surprised and grateful when, caught unawares, they are suddenly showered with a bit of attention. But Christmas? Holidays? Birthdays? One can’t just take a stab at properly covering the happenings of those honored guests, can they? Unlike their run-of-the-mill, day-to-day cousins, it is expected that they should be put down with meaning and beauty, and, sometimes, it is all a bit too much pressure.

But, more likely, it is simply that I have a little more time when life is less full of adventure – a few more moments to load and review pictures, a few more moments to think about what exactly there is to make of any day’s goings-on.

In the midst of some of life’s best and biggest moments, I often can do no more than try to absorb as much as I can while I listen and watch and participate. But, during those moments, while I might not have time to capture each event, it feels like I am very much soaking up happiness and goodness and living  – soft kissable baby skin, music, a husband I want to be with, and laughing kids. It feels too like I am pouring things into my kids, perhaps not each perfect moment printed on their minds, but, hopefully, they are having their bodies filled up with happiness and family. Hopefully they are stockpiling goodness and love.

In any case, we aren’t done yet. Plenty more ahead.

Wednesday, December 12, 2012

I’m not a big numbers person, but . . .


on 12-12-12??

Come on! That’s serious business!

So serious that people were carrying out all kinds of crazy plans today: having babies, making babies (oops, sorry . . . but . . . probably), marrying, jumping out of airplanes, getting their ears pierced (eh, that one was a bit of a miss).

They were doing these big things in hopes that good luck and good fortune came -- hand in hand -- with any activities that happened to be bundled in with this once-in-a-lifetime triplet of numbers.

And while for us, today was actually a quadruplet of numbers (and almost a sextuplet -- I spent a good hour and a half pushing our boy into this world; had I completed the task a mere nine minutes sooner, Abe would have been born at 12:12) our good fortune didn’t come with something that happened today. We certainly celebrated our fortune today, but it came with what happened 12 whole years ago.

It came when Mike and I -- young and poor, new to marriage and new to life on our own -- left our tiny one bedroom apartment (the papers and books Mike had been studying for his final the next day left strewn across the floor; me bundled up tight in Mike’s Paraguayan poncho) to make our way – all nerves and pain, fear and excitement -- to the hospital where we would welcome our first small, helpless, freshly created, real live human into the world at large, and, more importantly, into our own tiny sphere – our little realm of love and life and knowing. Heaven knows how we dare to do something so tremendous. So big.

But we did dare, and he did come. And that tiny little parcel -- with the square mouth wide open and screaming and the shaky arms that terrified him if not kept tightly wrapped -- was absolutely, purely and perfectly, a bundle of good luck and good fortune.

Monday, December 3, 2012

Reindeer and Labradors

Saturday we walked across the street to our city park to catch a glimpse of “Santa’s Reindeer”.

Abe and I both tried to stay home and happily be party-poopers (I’ve admitted often to being perfectly content partyless), but Mike seemed to think it was the type of activity we ought to all be a part of. You know – Christmas and family and reindeer – all happily together.

So, all eight of us made our way over, inviting our neighbors as we went (who hadn’t lived here long enough yet to know that Santa’s reindeer enjoy spending their time away from the North Pole in a small cage outside our city offices).

And the deer did turn out alright I suppose;

though I tend to imagine them in my mind much taller and much more . . . intimidating and impressive. And I’m not sure what Penny made of them. Is this a face that speaks disappointment? Concern? Is it, perhaps, the beginning scene of a Free Willy type movie with a Christmas twist? Free Blitzen? Is that what she is about? Freeing Blitzen?

But, in the end, it wouldn’t have mattered how the reindeer turned out because, as we walked back home, we spotted a dog driving a car. And THAT was a huge enough hit with the family that it could have made up for any number of other failures or disappointments.

And. Oh wait. Is it 11:30? Oh dear. Well, “and” nothing then. I was determined to go to bed nice and early tonight. I kind of thought I was because I am, in fact, in bed, but, accidentally, instead of sleeping, I have been typing about flying reindeer and driving dogs. Darn. I hate when I trick myself. Plus, I just remembered that maybe there already really has been a Free Willy Christmas type movie. Prancer? Does that sound familiar to anyone? Of course there was probably no dog driving a get-a-away car for the reindeer in that one. Hmm. Well. Enough of this nonsense then. Off to bed with all of you. And all of me.


Wait. Is that one word? Goodnight? Good night? . . . Good . . . riddance? Oh good grief.

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