I'm taking a break from our Thanksgiving festivities to sit and reflect.
Earlier this morning, we delivered Apple Crisps to several of our neighbors. This has become a fun tradition for us because there are several elderly people on our street - some whom don't have family nearby - so it feeds our spirit to drop by and say hello. I wasn't sure we'd be able to make the voyage since two of the four kids woke up this morning at 6:00 AM and promptly threw up. They've made a full recovery, though, so whatever was ailing them appears to be gone. And thankfully, they didn't throw up again after I administered their antibiotics for the strep throat that all four came down with last week. (Please note: I'm 100% healthy and the only one cooking so there's no concern of spreading germs along with our cheer).
Thinking it would be a good idea to go for a walk and get some fresh air, we set off on our pilgrimage. What an adorable sight we were, I'm sure, walking down the street with our wagon full of homemade Apple Crisps and little children dressed like Indians, a cute puppy affixed to a bright red leash.
Happy Thanksgiving, ya'll!
Oh but then...
I want to pull the wagon!
No, it's my turn!
I want to deliver this Apple Crisp!
No, it's my turn!
And right then, at that very moment when we're standing on the front steps of our second delivery and the door opens and a bright smile spreads across our neighbor's face at the sight on her stoop, whatever manners I thought our older children have learned in their eight years of life, completely dissipated when their little brother who is known to make the sound effects of BOOM! CRASH! PFTT! URGHAHAPSSS! runs in to them with his arms outstretched, and they, rightly so, because they are provoked, push him off the steps while yelling, "MOM! MOM?! Why must Henry be such a PAIN IN THE ("Oh dear heavens, please no!" I think to myself) U-S-S?"
Pain in the USS?
That must be the crazy ship we're on!
From the outside, looking in, our neighbors home was so perfectly tidy and so perfectly quiet. And I must admit, I lost myself in that for a moment. Oh, how I wanted to step in to that perfectly tidy and quiet world and watch the Macy's Day Parade. Sleepily nodding off.
But then I remember: One day, all too soon, that will be us, too.
Right now: We're need to embrace our time cruising aboard the Pain in the USS.
God willing, our children will grow up - strong and healthy - and move out to their own homes and families. And when those days come, I hope that Charlie and I will reflect back on these moments and the images that jump to our mind will be the happy ones.
Most of all, I hope our children remember the happy moments, too.
Moments that are devoid of sickness and periods of maternal insanity when instead of putting toys in toy baskets, I put them directly in to a trash bag because how many times do I have to ask you to put this away? (Answer = one time too many.) Maybe the children will have some recollection of that Thanksgiving morning when we came home from delivering Apple Crisps to our neighbors and their mother made everyone go lay down and take a nap. Yes, at 11:00 in the morning. Because her sanity depended upon her offspring slipping momentarily in to state of unconsciousness, so she could regain her strength.
But when the children awoke from their rest, their parents, together, had cooked the most wonderful meal and decorated the most lovely table. And they took of their matching aprons and summoned the family to the yard for a game of football. Every so often, their father would peek in the window to watch the game on television. We laughed and hugged, and fell to the ground, rolling across the lawn and leaves before retreating to our cozy home and roaring fire ... and our very own hot Apple Crisp.
That's how I hope the rest of today goes.
Even if not, that's exactly how I plan on remembering it.