I’ve been working at not being a grumpy pants. It seems it’s harder than one would think; in fact, I’m finding it difficult at times to invite more joy into my life because it seems there are so many miserable things that I’ve stamped with a big ole “important” sign…like picking up toys that will make their way to the floor again momentarily and cleaning bathroom counters. Who knew, that in a world where busy= important, I’d find myself trying to be the opposite. So, my house is no longer tidy, my gardens are dry and dusty, and my laundry is stacked in baskets, but today, I took my camera outside after dinner and snuck in a few minutes of something that makes me happy.
I’ve found that the most difficult thing to let go of is being in a hurry, but I have purposefully cleared my schedule this summer so that I can learn to relax. Once I begin to chill, I stop raising my voice, I panic less, and it’s easier to take time to do the things that I enjoy, like sew or create. I remember, again, why it is that I wanted to homeschool my kids… Because I like them. Because I want to be there for the little things and the big things. Because I didn’t want to spend everyday yelling at them to “hurry up”, “let’s go”, “we’re gonna be late”.
Slowing down means time to appreciate the ‘look at me’s’, and the teensy faery feasts that appear on a semi-regular basis on the front step, past dark. This one’s a cake. Yum!
And it’s funny. When I take just a few minutes to do something slowly and with beauty, even if it’s as simple as preparing oats with sliced strawberries for breakfast, it fills up a part of me that I’ve ignored for far too long….a part of me that can only be filled by snippets of joy. I’ve tried to fill that hole with many things, chocolate being the most readily available…
And you? Have you stepped towards freedom lately?
Last weekend, I put on my big girl pants and committed to spending the weekend amongst 50 screaming little girls, one being my own. One weekend at Brownie camp won’t kill a mama, but it will leave her exhausted and sore from being scrunched into a single bed with a baby and a Brownie. We spent the weekend together, stepping outside of my comfort zone, which consists mainly of our 7.5 acres. With a pirate-theme, we dressed up, made crafts, and sang campfire songs. I learned about the joys of swaps, tiny crafts made for pinning to camp hats to be traded with friends and I watched the girls dance the night away under the influence of ring pops. Wildflower, myself and baby spent two nights together in our little cabin, sharing snacks and staying up late, retelling stories of the day’s adventures. Watching my girl running and imagining with her little friends made the trip worth the struggle of packing for three and planning to be away from home. It’s so rewarding to see her stretch her wings with very little trepidation. In short, it turned out to be way more fun than I had imagined it would be….but I’m not going to lie, when I crawled into my queen-sized bed, complete with a papa bear beside me, I couldn’t have been more grateful. I love my life.
One of the coolest things about our weekend? The mama bird who lived right outside our door allowed us to stay in her cabin. Sure, she’d sneak away every time we came close enough to the door, but we did our best to give her a peaceful enough home while we were visiting. Three tiny eggs nestled in a moss-covered nest gave us lots of excitement. We made sure not to tell to many of the girls, to save her privacy.
As for Brownies, there’s some changes to be made to the system, changes that may take more than the letter that we plan to write, but it looks like something Wildflower is interested in sticking with for the time being. And me? I’m just happy to be home. There’s full year before we come face to face with anymore camping trips.