Wednesday, January 4, 2012

Moments to Remember

Monday morning the kids were ecstatic to wake up to snow on the ground. Not much more than a light dusting, but they all had new snow boots and snow pants they've been itching to put to use. After breakfast, they got bundled up, the big kids helping little sisters, and went outside to savor the snow which I so dread every winter. The grass was poking through and the driveway wasn't even covered, but they lugged out the saucer sleds and plunked down on the snowy grass for snow angels. I was thankful for living in the middle of a cul de sac, as they repeatedly slid down the driveway on their sleds, right into the street. I was also thankful for older siblings watching out for younger siblings so I could get a little laundry done in peace and quiet as they played outside. Bethany brought Mattie in to use the potty once (no accidents, even with the layers of clothes that needed to be peeled off before she could finally go!), and then back outside they went. They were out there for a good hour or so, and when they came in for good, Bethany made hot chocolate for everyone, and they sat around the table together and drank it. When Bethany asked if it was chocolaty enough, I heard Connor remark good-naturedly that it was actually not all that chocolaty, but that he didn't mind; and indeed he drank down every last sip. I have to admit there's generally a fair amount of snipping and sniping amongst siblings around here, a lot of he-did-its and she-won't-shares. But sometimes it's like Monday morning, and they all remember that they're best friends and that they love each other and that it's pretty fun to have a constant play group of four when school's off and they're stuck at home. I hope they remember those times the most when they're all grown up.

Tuesday was the last day off before heading back to the school grind. Bedtime was a bit tricky since Chris and I have been foolishly letting the kids live it up and stay up late almost every night. I know it would make things easier if we continued to enforce bedtimes when they're on break, but I like to give them a hiatus from their normal day-to-day constraints. That also means that some days, cookies were allowed before breakfast, and that lunch and dinner were consumed in the family room quite frequently. But Mathilda, who has a hard time getting to sleep on a good night, had a real heck of a time falling asleep when she and Lucy went to bed at their normal bedtime. She had had a short nap, which is pretty much always a bedtime killer. However, when she falls asleep from exhaustion in the middle of the day, I feel that she's so sleep deprived that she must truly need the rest. I tried to curtail bedtime problems by waking her after a short time, but no dice. Because she was keeping Lucy awake up in bed, or waking poor Lucy every time she manged to drift off, eventually I was at my wit's end and had to bring her downstairs. I was knee deep in an organization project (finally having at the hall closet, which had become a safety concern due to falling objects every time the door was opened), so I set her up on the couch with a pillow and a blanket, a favorite doll and a cup of water. Then I ignored her while I continued working. I was becoming more and more frustrated with her until I decided that I had got as much done as I could for the night and I went to sit with her on the couch, to try to help her simmer down and get to sleep.

My heart started melting as I looked at my precious, beautiful little 2-year old girl, who will soon be so big that she'll be off to preschool. I decided that instead of pulling my hair out and losing my temper, that I would enjoy my baby girl for a little while. She threw her arms around my neck and told me that she loves me so-so much. She told me she had some dry skin and that I needed to put some Aquaphor on it. She stroked my head and told me that my hair is getting long, just like Rapunzel. She patted her pillow and told me I needed to put my Rapunzel head down right there and cuddle her. She said Connor and Bethany and Lucy are upstairs sleeping and that she loves to cuddle them too. She said she loves Uncle Robby and Daddy so much, and that Uncle Robby had to say bye-bye. Chris came in from a late night trip to the grocery store, and she said Daddy has come home to cuddle me, then she patted the couch and said that maybe he would lay right there and cuddle her up. I gave her lots of hugs and kisses and whispered to her that she is mommy's little angel and that I hoped to memorize the moment and never forget it. So then of course as soon as I could I had to hop on my blog and write it down so that I can always go back and read about the night that Mathilda was being an utter stinker, yet irresistible and sweet as pie at the same time. Eventually she decided to go back upstairs to bed, and after a few more trips up and down the stairs to cover her up or find a doll, I think it's possible that's she's asleep at last.

In the morning, my kids will be back in school. I will miss them, but I'll do my best to enjoy the school routine and the relative quiet. At least it's a short week, and the weekend will be upon us quickly. 

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