Friday, April 18, 2008

Dusty corners, happy kids

I was upstairs wading through the laundry room today when Lydia ran in and told me in excitement, "Mom! I cleaned out everything from under my bed!" Curiosity overulled me so I followed her back to her room. There in the middle of the room was a pile of books, paper, gum wrappers, a doll that had been missing for some time, stray socks, a broken pencil, and plenty of other randoms all mixed with some rather disgustingly large dust bunnies. The nagging voice in my head told me I should be more on top of things and take care of things like this before they get so out control. Bad mom, I thought, your kids are going to get sick with all this dust accumulating. I had a vision of opening up a garbage bag and scooping the majority of it inside, then doing the same with the contents probably collecting dust under Jack's bed as well.

But then I realized what was going on. The kids were down on their hands and knees digging through the pile and scooping up treasures. "A pencil! Look mom! Look, a pencil! Look, Jack!" As they proceeded to sort through the junk, stuffing the best of the best into their backpacks, it occured to me that for them this was possibly the highlight of the morning. Children always manage to find joy in such little things. Ah, the wonders of childhood. Seems to me that between feeding the baby, changing diapers, studying for tests, and making meals I forget to look for simple joys. They are there, I just forget to realize it.

Awhile back, when I was still in school my friends and I created Happy Lists. We wrote down things that made us happy and I recall adding to this list for quite awhile. Right now, life is busy and I find myself stressed out all too often... And even if I just can't bring myself to find joy in a pile of dusty "treasures" from under the bed, I know there are a lot of other things in my life that do bring joy. No matter how silly, how small... I think it's time I start another happy list. So here goes... A start on my happy list:

1. Checking in on my children while they sleep. They look so peaceful and content, I wonder what they're dreaming.
2. Hearing, "I love you,"... or more like "Ahwubu"- from a kid who's just learning to talk.
3. A hot cup of coffee with real cream... not the powder stuff.
4. A visit at my mom's that lasts all afternoon.
5. Watching my three year old "read" to her little brother.

... And this is to be continued...

It may be cliche, but it still deservest to be said: enjoy the little things in life. It's all that matters.

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