I wanted a garden this year. And a tiny garden I did get. Inspired by my in-law’s green thumb setup (actually jealous), I claimed my sunny backyard patches. Ok, I glared and hrumphed at my neighbor’s looming trees eating up my precious sun. I. Was. Determined.
And so we dug and built and dug and built and prettied my little garden with raised beds and decorative rock. Wheelbarrow upon wheelbarrow full of delicious black dirt made its way to my new space. Bring on the veggies! To my surprise, my usual bed of lettuce failed to thrive (thanks trees and wandering squirrels). Yet, tomatoes grew above my head and fell over the rest of the garden. Cantaloupes snuck in and I even salvaged a few green onions and carrots (thanks family dog). Sweet peas, pickle cucumbers, swiss chard and green beans have made their presence known. Just enough to make it to our dinner table….and just enough to scare me as I realize most of it will need to be dealt with all at once in just a month or so. Nonetheless, I am so grateful to have the time to enjoy this summer pleasure. It’s a taste of childhood growing in my own back yard. And the grocery budget likes it, too!
My lovely daughter awoke Saturday morning with a whiny, tired tone. After about 30 minutes of this nonsense, I announced that was ENOUGH. She needed to stop with the silly business and get dressed for our kid photo session in 45 minutes. She promptly threw up.
Oops. I bow my head in mommy shame.
I guess we all get wrapped up in our schedules, routines and whatnot. Kid chatter becomes background static noise. I, personally, hear only static until I can get two cups of java down every morning. This was my reminder to slow down and listen to my kids. Stop what I’m doing, look them in the eye and have a genuine moment. After all, that’s what I want from other people. Kids count, too.
My other stellar mommy challenge: My. House. Is. A. Clutterfest.
This summer, I just can’t find a balance between taking care of the outside stuff and keeping the inside stuff in order. School journals still sit on my washer from last school year. 3 partially complete knitting projects keep that company and I think I lost several knitting needles to the dark depths behind the washer. There is too much STUFF here and there. I feel the itch of simplifying it all. Donate. Send it to a garage sale. Recycle. My one obstacle is that I must carry out this mission during kid off-hours. Meaning, they MUST be elsewhere or they will notice just how much they looovvveeedddd that stuffed rabbit that sat under their bed for a year. Luckily, school is just around the corner, when I can roll up my sleeves and carry out my secret mission.
For now, I can work at having more genuine moments with my kids. DAILY. They grow up so fast, I don’t want to miss a minute.
It’s August. My friends are suddenly restless. A new school year approaches. Specifically, the youngest of our broods will join KINDERGARTEN. What is Plan B after ALL of our kids are in school? Do we want to go back to school? Do we want to find work? I admit I have not given it a single thought for two years. Being crazy in love with my life void of salary, I only worry about daily stuff: aka My Plan B. The cleaning, the errands, the pet maintenance, homework monitoring, different school start/stop times, different kid sports start/stop times, playdates, did the garden get watered and what’s for dinner…. that is my tunnel vision. It is blissfully chaotic and more rewarding than ever.
My Plan B has aged like fine wine. I wanted to be happy (no more commute). I wanted to do things that matter to me (no more dropping my kids off at a daycare for 12 hours). I wanted to embrace life (feed my spirit without triple lattes to hold me up) and I wanted to make a positive impact (beginning with a break from soul-sucking job haters). Every morning, I taste a sweeter satisfaction with my life. It doesn’t matter that I’m scrubbing toilets and cleaning up lizard poop. My family is happy with me. I am happy with me. Plan B has worked out very well.
Is it really time to spark Plan C?
I have a vision board. Simply put, I attached pictures of things that made me happy onto a piece of poster paper. How did I envision my life? What feels happy and peaceful? What was important to me? I stared at this board for a full year back in 2009. Then, it fell behind my dresser. Since this Plan C business started tugging at my pant leg, I wrenched it the board back out into civilization. Now, I stand and stare it. Now, it’s my desktop wallpaper. The more I visualize it…the more sense I have about making them apart of my life.
- My Vision Board
You know what? I’m tickled to report that many of these ideas are a part of my life now. Others are planned. Others scare the heck out of me. For now, I’m going to add to it. Stare at it some more. Tackle it again when it feels right. I like living my “now.” I am not restless.
Hey, check out our living “now” over the last week. We made miniature gardens, fixed and ugly problem and enjoyed some treats!