Wednesday, March 16, 2011

When we have it...

I believe that in this life, things come and go so that we may truly appreciate what we have when we have it.  It's one of the reasons I love living in Iowa.  Yes, the winters are a little longer than I'd like, and the snow gets to be a tad bit more than the 'white Christmas' I always hope for, but living through a hard winter each year only makes the birth of a new Spring that much sweeter.

...The first grilled hamburger that much sweeter.

...The first warm walk in the neighborhood that much sweeter.

...The first car wash, followed by a drive on University Ave. with the sunroof down that much sweeter.

And now, I'm realizing this genuine appreciation as a mom.  Being away from Cruz during the week is tough, even tormenting some days.  But as I've learned through this process of balance, being a working mom has made me appreciate the time you do have at home that much more.  Every second counts.  Bath time, diaper changes, and bottle feedings become the highlights of my days.

This week is Spring Break and fortunately, I've had time to appreciate all of the above.  Every year, mother nature decides to reward us educators with the season's first Spring-like forecast, usually with a '60' sprinkled somewhere in there.  The blinds go up, the red door opens, and our cat naps for hours in the sun spot in the living room.  Windows are cleaned, rugs are washed and replaced with new, and I'm suddenly itching for flip flops, capri pants, and a Dairy Queen blizzard.

Look who's sitting at the kitchen table with Mom and Dad!

Having a week at home with Cruz has been a dream.  The kind of dream I always pictured when I used to think about my life as a mom.  Like sipping a cup of coffee in one hand, and feeding Cruz oatmeal with a pinch of cinnamon with the other.  Sitting face to face at the sun-streamed kitchen table, making each other laugh, and planning the day ahead.

Or folding laundry in the middle of the living room floor, sitting next to Cruz as he shoves a clean sock in his mouth, and reaches for every other sock I attempt to fold.  Or throwing a warm blanket over his head and carrying him to the mailbox.  Or cooking supper while he plays in his Moses basket at my feet.  It's the simple things that make this life feel so right. 

I have loved these days together.  I loved getting to see how Cruz has changed since having him home everyday during maternity leave.  He squeals and plays peekaboo.  He shakes his head 'no' and sits like a big boy in his stroller.  And he takes two and a half hour naps in his crib!  He's grown into such a happy, content baby, and these days at home make me all the more ready for summer break.

My big boy reading a book...

And "potty training," aka, helping Mom clean the bathroom...

Somebody's hair is coming in...

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