This is the post that almost wasn't. This post has been started and interrupted 54 times. Or 54 million times. Can't remember which. I lost count. I've considered deleting it and just starting again. But these memories are so sweet and good. Just will publish and move on. So much of this happened a month ago, but that's ok too.
'Unless the Lord builds the house, the builders labor in vain. Unless the Lord watches over the city, the guards stand watch in vain. In vain you rise early and stay up late, toiling for food to eat— for he grants sleep to those he loves. Children are a heritage from the Lord, offspring a reward from him. Like arrows in the hands of a warrior are children born in one’s youth. Blessed is the man whose quiver is full of them. They will not be put to shame when they contend with their opponents in court.' (Psalm 127:1-5 NIV)
They are arrows. Our children are arrows.
Here's the truth. Arrows grow dull. They take care and sharpening. The best arrows are the ones that someone has spent time with. Sharpening. Handling. Turning over and over in the hands of the sharpener. Examining carefully. And then working on the areas that need extra attention.
'Then our sons in their youth will be like well-nurtured plants, and our daughters will be like pillars carved to adorn a palace.' (Psalm 144:12 NIV)
It's 10:41. PM. Yes 10:41pm and the three older girls are giggling and laughing, hiding under the covers in their room. I can hear them upstairs. Having a ball. Being girls. I remember that. I remember the late night talking. I don't remember planning weddings or picking baby names. But I do remember being with my sister and feeling VERY safe. So when my own get to bouncing around and giggling late into the night, I can't stop them. It's too important. The bonding. The memories. This childhood. They will make up the sleep another day.
Occasionally, I get completely overwhelmed with laundry. I mean, deer-in-headlights, don't know where to start, type of overwhelmed. We've traveled so much recently. We've come in with bags and suitcases full of laundry. Life is always fuller during the holidays, the time usually spent on normal things like laundry, were spent on other things. Christmas things. Sending cards, wrapping gifts, stuffing stockings, hanging tinsel.
My laundry room is small and right off the kitchen. It was so bad that the sheets, clothes, and socks were spilling out into the kitchen. So I just shoved it all back in and shut the door. I did it for a few days. Shoving more in and pulling the door closed. There were sheets from 5 beds and just plain old piles and piles of 6 people's stuff. It became a laundry epidemic.
So what does a mama who is SOOO behind on laundry do... when she's swimming in piles and piles? Of dirty laundry?
I piled my girls, and all the dirty laundry in the car. I told the girls that we were doing a special math class today. And a field trip. To the laundry mat. I packed snacks and shoved the gobs of laundry in the back of my car. It didn't fit. And I have a big car. I filled the entire passenger side too. And we drove to the closest laundry mat.
The girls counted money, filled slots with quarters, dumped cups with detergent. They loved it.
I did a week or two's laundry in 2 hours.
All was well in my world. Minus the guy who was watching us and videoing us. Yucky stalker guy.
If I could go back, I would have just said something to him.
Earlier that morning, I had a sweet time in the Word and I found an awesome verse.
'But the Lord is with me like a mighty warrior.' Jeremiah 20:11 NIV
When you believe in Jesus, you get a body guard.
I love that.
God protected me. He just does that.
Our favorite. Yep. American Girl.
I think I turn into a goober in there. Smiling. Living life like a 5 year old. It is so fun. If you like that sort of thing.
I seriously thought there was no help for my girls dolls hair. Who knew? These mamacitas worked magic on them.
After the hair salon, Brian took us all to the American Girl cafe for brunch.
A little bit picturesque eh? Snow falling, happy family.
Freezing cold euphoria. :)
One more snow ball fight. This time….they got him good.
So, who knew that snow and certain shoes don't mix. I can count how many snows I've experienced in my entire life on two hands. So the girls were wearing shoes that soaked up the cold snow and melted snow. Hypothermia feet.
Gap Kids will have rain boots, snow boots, something?
They recommended we try H and M.
H and M recommended we try Forever 21.
And then craziness ensued.
There's nothing like a NYC catwalk to bring out the sassy in a girl. And what a way to show off your new kicks.
And then we seriously almost died from frost bite and hypothermia. We were looking for a taxi to take us to Little Italy. That was the plan. Italian dinner. It was 4:30. The time the cabs switch over from one shift to another.
Brian worked in NYC for a year. He knew about the shift change. It's NO MANS LAND for getting a taxi. No taxi's. Anywhere.
It's snowing. It's 24 degrees. We have hypothermia. Which, to the best of my knowledge, slows down brain activity. Because, I couldn't think. Couldn't make a decision. Couldn't find a cab. Brian said he turned to me to ask me if we wanted to just scoot into another restaurant instead and I had snow on my eyelashes. He laughed and we pulled me into a warm restaurant. Not Italian. Not little Italy. But we thawed out over a huge pile of table side guacamole. And it was good.