Thursday, August 13, 2015

thirty-one joys on my thirty-first birthday...

"In naming that which is right before me, that which I'd otherwise miss, the invisible becomes visible.  God is in the details, God is in the moment.  God is in all that blurs by in a life - even hurts in a life."

In the spirit of Ann Voscamp, thirty-one joys on my thirty-first birthday.  I laid in bed last night and jotted down the things that make me really really happy in this place I find myself today.  Before long, I was smiling with tears running down my face, full of gratitude and thanksgiving for a God who always provides. 
1.  Sliding down the curly slide with Mila on my lap and Cruz straddled behind me.  I want my kids to recall lots of memories of their mommy going down the slide with them.

2.  Sitting amidst four generations of people that I love at Cruz and Charly's t-ball games.  Watching my eighty-year old grandpa lift great grandchild after great grandchild in his arms for hugs after the game and my grandma dig into her purse for one more package of fruit snacks for Mila. 

3.  Dance parties that have evolved from our tiny odd-shaped living room on Fleur Drive to our new digs, where Cruz and Mila watch themselves dance through the glass of the fireplace and I watch them as I cook dinner at the kitchen island.

4.  That moment every night when I close the door to the last of the kids' room, after our usual routine of songs, snuggles, and Brown Bear Brown Bear for the umpteenth time, and walk into my living room.  It's finally quiet, the lighting is really pretty, and I stop and think to myself, "Is this really my life?"  Sometimes, I feel like I'm playing house.

5.  The flock of geese that fly over our house every night at the same time.  Like clockwork, around 8:45, they fly so low I can hear their wings rustle in the wind, just as the sun has set and the sky is full of color.  My kids are usually just falling asleep and I smile to think that the mama geese are likely flying home to put their babies to bed, too.    

6.  Pulling into my attached garage, especially when it's raining outside.

7.  Chocolate shake and popcorn movie nights on a Sunday night.  One blue sleeping bag, one pink one, and two excited littles with miniature bowls of popcorn resting on their chests.  I remember that unabashed feeling of anticipation for all things cozy when I was a child and I love that I can see the same feeling in the eyes of my own. 

8.  Swimming lessons with Jacob and watching Cruz's eyes fill with pride and excitement as he jumped off that diving board.  This uninterrupted half hour to just sit back, feel the sun on my skin, and watch my little learn and soak up individualized attention has been such a blessing this summer.  

9.  Surprise UPS deliveries and the sweetest book from a friend I am so thankful for.  The miles might separate the two of us, but my connection with Kate is a lifelong one.  

10.  String lights on my deck and cool summer nights that call for sweatshirts.

11.  Curling up in Cruz's bed for another chapter of My Father's Dragon.  It's all chapter books now and I love our episodes of adventure every night before bed.   

12.  Saturday mornings at the farmers' market.  Cachapas and freshly ground coffee for us, monster cookies and rasta lemonades for the kids.  Impromptu picnics right on the grass, with encore after encore of Ring Around the Rosie to follow.

13.  A date with Chip and Joanna on a Friday night, curled up in my king-sized bed.

14.  The sunshine that floods my house in the late afternoon, just as my husband (and contractor) promised it would.

15.  Our frequent trips to the pool this summer.  Playing Five Little Piggies on the lazy river and eating ice cream sandwiches and sno-cones at the snack bar.  Our very slow walk to the car, laughing with Cruz as we wait for very patiently for our little turtle to keep up.

16.  Watching their eyes grow heavy from the rear view mirror as we drive home from the pool.  Carrying their dark skinned, heavy bodies to their beds, wondering if this is the last year Cruz will let me.

17.  That precious quiet time and the sense of accomplishment I feel when they both go down for a nap. 

18.  Nights out with great friends.  Moscow mules during thunderstorms, wine and sidewalk chalk on the driveway, fish fries on a Friday night.

19.  Charcuterie and stay home dates with my love.

20.  Little Prairie Girl on Main Street.

21.  Pablos' fruit salsa.

22.  Dawes on Pandora.

23.  Feeling Mila's limp body curled up on mine before I lay her in her crib.  She's not much of a snuggler, so I savor those rare moments to feel her close to me. 

24.  Bringing groceries into the house and organizing them in my new pantry.

25.  Post-nap popsicles on the deck after nap. 

26.  Birkenstocks

27.  Singing songs with Mila, especially when she requests "woh woh" or "bitsy bitsy."

28.  Discovering hidden gems at a flea market, like a pair of old antique paddles that will look perfect on my wall somewhere.

29.  My ticking stripe apron from my mom.  Or anything ticking stripe for that matter.

30.  Fiddle fig plants that sort of like my house.  Picky little devils...

31.  Driveway chats with new neighbors and daydreams of lots of kids running around in a few short years.

I could keep going, but I'll save that 'til next year.  Looking forward to some celebrating this weekend - a homemade cake from my boys, a date night with my main squeeze, and a seafood boil with my family this weekend.  Just a week of summer break left - here's to all the joy those days bring. 

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