I’m sitting at my dining room table listening to Drew Holcomb & The Neighbors and drinking a cup of lemon jasmine green tea that I had to talk myself into taking with honey.
During Whole30 I grew to enjoy unsweetened tea very much. It was a little afternoon or late night treat that was fully compliant with the program and felt like an indulgence.
I don’t need to sweeten it with honey, but that sounded especially lovely tonight so I decided to go for it. After walking through in my mind that life is short and we are meant to enjoy things. Things like raw honey. I mean it’s practically a health food!
God called the promised land the land flowing with milk and honey, so how could those things be all that bad. Am I right?! That’s an argument used by my friend Jen and I’ve never forgotten it. Especially when I dip into a lovely jar of strawberry creamed honey sent from my sweet aunt in Jacksonville, FL. Or I dig into a big bowl of ice cream. That’s basically milk, right?
I’m sitting here with my sweetened tea and my soulful tunes and I’m happily dropping my thoughts onto the keyboard like raindrops on a tin roof. My heart is full this evening and I want to capture it.
I’ve been sick for the past 4 days and whenever I’m sick I get the irrational fear that I’ll never feel better again. Things like, “How will I ever enjoy the summer? Will I ever want to cook again? How am I going to take care of my children without it feeling like climbing Mount Everest?”
Perfectly logical thinking…
Thanks to the good Lord in heaven above I woke up this morning after an awful night’s sleep feeling better than I have in days! We had a busy day, so it was a welcome relief to be feeling so much better. The girls are both teetering on the edge of sickness and health, but I loaded them up with healthy breakfasts, essential oils, and most importantly prayer. They seemed well enough after all that, so we got into gear for Grace’s field trip to the Rainforest Cafe at Great Lakes Crossing Mall. All 4 of us had to be there, ready to go, at 10:00 sharp.
By the grace of God I was able to shower, feed all the kids, pack everything we needed and get us on the road in time for our 50 minute trip!
We strolled in at 10:00 on.the.nose.
The field trip was as hectic as you’d imagine with an entire dining room of preschoolers, parents, and siblings. The kids seemed to enjoy touring the animal displays and learning about the animals and their habitat, so that’s what mattered.
I had the opportunity to chat with some of the other moms and Drew was a champ throughout the whole ordeal.
After the tour and eating lunch a few families headed over to the kids play area for the little ones to burn the energy they were all still brimming with. Grace and Avery had a blast running around, climbing on giant fruits and vegetables, and literally piling on top of their friends. At one point Grace was laying at the bottom of a pile of 5 classmates and was laughing through the whole thing. It was hilarious, and I wish I’d had my camera handy but I was busy bouncing Drew and continuously scanning the madness to make sure Avery was present and accounted for.
The kids had their hearts set on riding the shiny carousel nearby so we all shelled out way too much money to make their dream come true. It was a gentle ride and the kids all loved it.
I however am getting old. It made me dizzy and light-headed and I couldn’t wait to get off! I think Drew got a little dizzy too. Poor guy.
Before leaving the house this morning, I grabbed a Carter’s coupon I’d been holding onto and in a twist of luck, the mall had a Carter’s store!
I’m a sucker for Carter’s. Their clothes have fit all 3 of my kids so well (lots of other brands are short and wide rather than long and lean and they just don’t work well for us) and I love how matchy matchy they are.
So many of the people I follow online dress their girls in these totally hip and stylish outfits involving infinity scarves and skinny jeans and cowboy boots. They look adorable and awesomely trendy.
I sometimes feel cheesy for liking the 3 piece sets from Carter’s, but at the end of the day they are comfortable, well-made, and reasonably priced. My kiddos like comfort above all, so I know there’s no way in hell Grace would tolerate skinny jeans or an infinity scarf. Ha!
They’re only little once, so I’m ok with the colorful cotton coordinates at this point :)
We loaded up with a bunch of great stuff and even greater deals and then headed for the car.
There mayyyy have been some cajoling at the store about trying on a few things for size and I mayyy have promised a candy treat on the way out if everyone cooperated.
By the time we finally made it out of the store we were all exhausted. Avery was two hours past nap time, Drew was getting hungry and even Grace was looking weary.
Drew wanted to be held and Avery could hardly walk another step, so I carried Drew and put Avery into his carseat in the snap-n-go stroller! It was hilarious, but it worked!
Of course I didn’t have any quarters on me so we tried to get change for a $5 from a couple of guys walking by and one of them did the nicest thing. He outright GAVE me $3! I tried to insist he take my $5, but he wouldn’t have anything to do with it and seemed happy to hand the money over “for the kids”.
I about cried. He was a young guy, probably in his 20’s and it was just the sweetest gesture.
I saw the goodness of God in that guy and it warmed my heart.
Once we had the dollar bills, we still needed to get quarters so I buttered up the cashier at Dress Barn and she changed a buck for me.
We grabbed some Sprees (for Avery and me) and a cherry gum ball for Grace and we finally made our way to the car.
Avery was asleep before we got there and Grace was happy to chew her gum in the air conditioned van while I nursed Drew again in preparation for the long ride home.
Everyone napped through the entire ride and I enjoyed uninterrupted grown up music all the way home :)
After dinner and a little rest time we took a walk to soak up the lovely spring weather.
It was one of those walks that’s just perfect. Everyone’s happy. The weather is on point. The conversation bounces back and forth between question/answer time and squeals of delight about how much fun we’re having.
It was one of those rare moments when everything feels right and heaven and earth seem to collide. If only for a few sweet moments.
I wanted to burn it into my memory so I can call the sweetness back when we’re having a tough time.
I wanted to remember everything about each one of them.
Grace’s long brown hair, quirky little gait, fluffy new neon pink skirt and wide-eyed smile.
Avery’s plump little knees peeking out of her new neon pink shorts and her sweet toes gripping for dear life to her flip-flops, re-learning how to walk in them after a long winter in sneakers and boots.
Drew’s shock of dark hair and smooth pale skin. The way his blue eyes darted back and forth taking in every detail of the canopy of trees above him. The little red bump on his chin from who knows where, and his sweet gummy smile each time I made eye contact.
I’m blessed beyond measure and I’m overflowing with gratitude tonight.