April 5, 2006

Out of Hibernation and Other Important and Silly Moments

Today was another beautiful day here. It was a good day all around. We slept in a bit with a big cuddle all together on the bed. Up for breakfast, reading some storybooks and then started school. Everyone was on task for the most part as the incentive of going outside was high. We stopped for lunch and it became clear the younger two were crabby and needed a nap. We all took a two hour nap!!!!

Upon waking up we headed outside. The kids were very disappointed that I could not get their bikes down from the pegs in the rafters of our garage. I could not manage to balance on the big ladder and handle lifting the weight of the bike up and around the hooks to get the bikes down. They had to settle for a walk, though Ciaran did have his scooter and he even let Rhiannon take a few turns on it.

We brought a garbage bag because on our last walk Rhiannon realized how much trash had been uncovered with the melting of the snow and all my kids have a heart for stewardship and God's creation. We spent the next hour walking around our neighborhood and up to a local pond and park picking up trash as we went along. We ran out of room in our kitchen sized trash bag and were sad to pass more along the way. Still we had filled an entire trash bag - all the kids helped and were enthusiastic about it.

I was especially proud of Rhiannon. At one point she saw several of her neighborhood friends playing together and jumping on a trampoline and I was all ready for her to ask to join them. She didn't she just stopped and looked at them and then continued picking up the trash. I wondered what went through her head but she seemed to not want to talk and we continued with our task.

A few moments later a woman in her late 60's I would guess came up looking for her dog who we had just stopped as he greeted us. She saw us with the trash bag and smiled. She asked me if I was teaching the kids about citizenship today. I smiled and said yes they were being good citizens and stewards. Had our paths crossed longer I would have shared that it was my 6 year olds heart that led us to do it, not my motherly wisdom. Still she saw a family picking up trash from the park.

We hiked down through brush and mud and cleaned up along the shoreline of the pond, even fished a few things out, we walked down and up a hill and once the bag could hold no more walked over to the playground to place it in the trash bin and then play at the park for awhile.

Spring has definitely sprung here in Minnesota. My neighbor said it is like we are all like bears out of hibernation. It is true I saw more of my neighbors today than I probably have all winter long! The kids were all out playing, the parents out talking in little groups, everyone seemed to just be outside for reasons and no reasons alike. The park was packed it was actually a bit overwhelming for my kids who are used to arriving to an empty park. There were kids and parents biking, walking, playing basketball and just standing in driveways and on lawns.

We spent as long as we could outside. Stopping over to see some neighbors on our way home. The kids ran through the yard and rode their bikes and scooters and the parents talked and commented about how much older everyone's kids seemed. We caught up on events since last October, sad I know, but it happens here. It is as if life was on hold for a bit and it all just picked up right in the middle today.

We eventually had to head inside for dinner and the kids getting ready for their Wed night program. Sirah and I took advantage of the free time and met a friend and went for yet another walk outside. This one might actually count as exercise for me. My friend's three kids joined us on bikes and hot wheels and Sirah in a stroller we walked around her neighborhood and a nearby wooded path, chatting and enjoying the good weather. It was a wonderful way to end the evening.

When the kids arrived home it was baths, stories and bedtime. A giant sleepover tonight, everyone in our room. We said prayers and then everyone got to tell a funny story they made up. Glimpses into their hearts and minds are always fun. Rhiannon's tale was about a young maiden (her words) that is offered a coin by a young man, she refuses but can not stop thinking about him. A few days later she accepts his coin and his offer of marriage.

Ciaran's tale was a rather inventive one about an ordinary snake looking for some food. Each time he comes upon some food it does something strange. The cucumber walked away, the apple turned into a rat, another item ran away and something jumped out of the trees. It was very inventive and funny. Sirah's story was a 2 year old's story about a snake (because Ciaran's had been) and about eyeballs and eyebrows (which she thanked God for during her prayer time) and a few other random things thrown in.

I am almost ashamed to write my own story here. I need to give some context first. We had a stomach bug going on in the beginning of the week and all three kids have been struggling with uncontrollable and terrible gas. It has been embarrassing, tough for them and rather stinky in our home truth be told. They were all a bit embarrassed about it as we were all sleeping in the same room so I decided to made them laugh and relax.

So anyway my story was about a family who could not stop tooting and they filled their house with so much gas that it lifted up into outer space and eventually exploded. Everyone jumped out in time and luckily their gas saved them. For each time they had another toot it brought them back down further and further to Earth. By the time they all landed they had no more gas in them. The kids were cracking up the whole time and everyone seemed a bit more relaxed. So there my secret is out you now know that I can have a potty humor side too.

Well everyone is asleep now and I must be off to bed myself. I am leaving a sink full of dishes, undone laundry, and plenty of clutter to pick up throughout the house. But I have three content and happy children, love tanks that were filled up, a beautiful fun filled day outside, a cleaner neighborhood, and a full heart myself. Hope your day was as fun as ours.



  1. Sounds like a lot of "schooling" got done to me! Bravo on your "ecology" lesson, "creative writing & story telling lesson", "physical education" lesson, and more! ;)

  2. 6yo hearts are awesome! Mine also wanted to bring along a bag for trash on our first spring walk. We haven't had that much snow -- especially for MI -- but plenty of trash anyway.