Wednesday, February 23, 2011

Balance... Part 2

It seems hard to believe that just over 10 weeks ago I was struggling to find the balance in my life.  And I don't just mean finding time to do things I mean re-capturing a feeling from my youth when life was something to be lived and time something to be made the most of.  Kirk and I have often wished for that feeling.  For me, the memories are of long summer evenings at the park: Dad playing softball, Mom chatting in the stands, Kristin and I running back and forth between the field and playground and always spending a few minutes in the line at the ice cream truck. 

Looking back I realize that my parents were doing just what I am doing - working 40 hour weeks, raising kids, and maintaining a marriage.  This is not the first time (nor is it like to be the last) that I will mention that my mother seemed to have an innate ability to get it all done and still have free time left over to make dinner, read books and sew Halloween costumes.  Not to mention dresses for all of us for Easter and Christmas. To this day I do not know how she managed it and to be honest I don't want to know.  I prefer that she not shatter the idyllic image of her I have from my youth.

I can't exactly pinpoint what has changed, but I am getting closer to finding that balance, that center.  Working mother, homemaker, wife, sister, friend.  Part of it may have to do with relaxing my standards. I've always been a list maker (even if I don't follow that list) and I've always needed a strong sense of control.  If having Whit has taught me anything it is that I no longer make the master schedule of my life, I simply follow his.  I don't go to bed when I want, I don't wake up when I want, I don't eat when I want.  And I'm learning that it is ok to leave a sink full of half-washed dishes and it is ok to let the dirty (or clean) clothing pile up a little.  One of my favorite new quotes from one of my favorite new people is 'Keep your house clean enough to be healthy and dirty enough to be happy."

And now for a few fun updates about Whit:

 Enjoying spinach (above) and peas (below).  The fists are part of his 'excited' face.

Standing by the recliner.  Whit chose to crawl last Wednesday and proceeded to pulling up the next day.  Here he is trying to take a step just a week later. Yes, he does know that I am taking his picture and he is posing for the camera.

Thursday, February 17, 2011

Making the most of it

Not long ago I was complaining that I simply have not felt 'settled'.  How quickly things change.  Perhaps it is all in my attitude but perhaps it has something to do with the string of beautiful weather we have had recently.  Although I do not consider 58 degrees with a brisk wind 'spring' the increased sunshine has served to take my mood to an entirely different level.

Now is the time to make the most of my newly discovered energy.  In the past 2 weeks I have re-organized my closets, pantry and garage.  I've begun meal planning and 'couponing'; I saved more than $30.00 just this week. Whit and I have taken several walks in the neighborhood and we've signed him up for swimming lessons beginning in March. Whit and I have begun attending La Leche League meetings and, although we've been foiled so far by nap time, I also plan to take him to the library so that we can get library cards. We visited Daddy at the baseball field last Saturday and we are looking forward to taking in some of practice this week as well.

I firmly believe that two things are influencing this change for the better (outside of the nice weather and Whit getting a little older).  First, Kirk and I have begun a personal bible study.  It's not much, no where near what we would like to do.  But 5 minutes after a family dinner (at the table) several times a week has given us the opportunity to re-connect in a way that I've been missing since Whit made himself the center of our world.  The second is that I've put a limit on my own TV watching.  No, Mom, I'm not doing TV tags... Just thinking before I hit that power button.  "Is there something on TV that I really want/need to be watching?"  "Is there something better I could be doing with my time?"  Usually the answer is "No, I'm just bored" and "If I'm bored why don't I do something productive or do something with Whit?"

I know deep in my heart that this weather cannot possibly last. I'm sure we are in for another spell of nasty winter.  But with baseball season just around the corner it is time to make the most of what we have.