December 23, 2013

all is calm

Raising children.

Something like a hurricane.  The storm blows in when morning sickness hits for the first time, and doesn't let up until...well...until now.

Oh, I know the storm will hit again; when the kids are wearing antiperspirant and wearing our patience thin for the second time in their lives.

But for now, we are breathing deeply in the eye of the storm.  The kids - they play.  They giggle.  They wipe their own butts.  Our nights are still and quiet.  We call our evenings our own after 8 p.m.  Spankings are becoming less and less, and joy is becoming more and more.

So we are seizing the day (before the kids are too cool for us).  When we get a chance to travel cheaply, we do it.  We play "Yellow Car I win" on the road, Monopoly Deal on the train, or Ticket to Ride on the plane.  And when we get a chance to stay home, we usually do that too.

But this Christmas, we drove 2 1/2 hours, on a whim, to a place called Snow Mountain, where we slept on rock-hard beds with two pillows between the six of us (the lobby said the extra pillows were all "dirty").  The water in the faucets was ice cold except between the hours of 7:30 p.m. - 7:30 a.m.

But who needs hot water during the day anyway?  Not us.  We were too busy playing in the snow!  Too busy building a teenie-tiny snowman, to whom we gave the name "Junior."

Too busy making runs downhill on our new red sled.

I even consented to our two oldest boarding a tethered hot air balloon with Daddy for a short ride up into the flurries.

And I consented to my oldest being strapped into a zipline harness.  
I watched with horror and admiration as my eight-year-old jumped off the snowy precipice and slung out into the white.  The army recruiters are lining up.

The dry land assault boat was fun to ride.  Even I got into one of these things, to be shoved down the steep decline by a man in a straw hat.

And Bright was interviewed for the news.  Of course.

Doll Face did alright, until her princess feet got cold, and then we had to pull her in the sled.  

Brave was content to make snowballs.  For hours on end.  Except, of course, when he was hungry (which is often).  Here is his hungry look.  It says, "Give me food, or I'll never smile again."

All is calm.  All is bright.  Loving the season we are in.