More Springs

“That is one good thing about this world… there are always sure to be more springs.”

~ LM Montgomery

I was reading a Real Simple magazine today when I came across this quote and it spoke to me. More springs. More fresh starts. More renewal. “Springs” don’t necessarily have to be the actual season. They can be small changes. Restarts. Blank slates. New habits. New hobbies. A face mask and a manicure. A move across country. A new job. Anything that sets forth a spirit of renewal and change in you.

Chad and I are on the cusp on a new spring ourselves. As I’ve mentioned before, we have listed our house with a realtor and will be downsizing. Chad has been moving furniture while I’m at my parents, and I’ve been pining away on Pinterest looking at decor ideas. I’m excited for this move for many reasons.

1. It’s back to basics. This is a temporary living situation, so I won’t feel compelled to perfect every detail of this home. We are living on “sweat equity” so I will be doing projects, but because it is not my home I won’t be as pressured to have everything Instagram-worthy. I get to focus on what matters. Time with Cooksey, time with Chad, reading books, cooking, exercising, meditating, living simply. I can focus on quiet time with God and quality time with my family. I can call my mom from my back porch while the dogs run in the yard and I sip my wine. I can raise my chickens that Chad doesn’t know we’re getting yet. The basics. The simple things. The good life.

2. It is a fresh start. We get a whole new schedule regarding commutes to work and dinner time. We get a new routine in regards to what time we wake up and go to bed. We get new scenery. A new kitchen to work in, a new office to write in, a new backyard to play in. It will all be fresh.

3. It begins a new chapter in our life. Cook was brought home from the hospital to our current house, and it has served us well. We have made so many memories in it, and will miss it desperately. But this is a new chapter for us. We get a new set of daily experiences. We get to make new memories within new walls. We get to start new. A blank page.

We all need new springs in life. We need the times that turn over a new leaf and give us a fresh outlook. We need the renewal that comes with those times. We need new chapters to start new habits or begin new hobbies. We need to go back to basics, regain our strength, and start anew.

I hope you have many more springs in your life.

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Baby Shark

How do Baby Shark, cows, and hand foot mouth all relate? Lemme tell ya.

Yesterday Cook was real sick. Puked all over me. Wouldn’t be put down. Only wanted Mama. That kinda sick.

This morning at 5:30 we woke up and he was miraculously better. Happy baby, we listened to Baby Shark on my parents’ patio no less than 50 times. And he danced and danced.

I went to change his diaper to get ready to go to the zoo, and noticed his “chigger bites” from two days ago we’re much worse. Dark red and oozy. It was time to take him in.

Hand foot mouth is the diagnosis, which is a viral infection. Very contagious. Guess who’s also in for the same weekend? My niece and nephew. Quarantine time.

Because there is nothing we can do other than topical treatments, we went to the zoo. Cook ate a cheeseburger and was awarded some new toys for all his toil. Boy deserves the whole gift shop.

Fast forward past naps, the family has gone out to the cabin and C and I remain at the house. He’s down for the night early because he’s had a big day, and I’m on the patio enjoying a glass of wine. Grape Creek Vineyard for the win. The property next to my parents holds about 30 head of cattle and they’re right next to our fence. Longing for home and my own cattle, I walk barefoot over to the fence. 53 and I make an instant connection. She wants to eat out of my hand, even lets me touch her nose, but then runs away. Her playfulness sparks joy in me, and the simplicity of the country makes me thankful. I’m reminded to count my blessings; that of a healthy, happy baby, that of a loving family that supports me through the rough patches, that of a husband that has answered every FaceTime and phone call today. All of them. Simplicity is often the answer to life’s ailments. Overwhelmed? Simplify. Stressed? Simplify.

Cook is healthy, and CC and I had the chance to talk more today than when I’m home. Life is good. And simple.

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Take Life Slow

Take life slow. Enjoy the little things. Embrace the chaos.

I have the “luxury” of having summers off. I put it in quotations because if you are a teacher or love a teacher you know that’s a joke. I have summers off and I damn well deserve them. Also, my “summer” just started. I have taught summer school, gone to a conference, and had dinner with coworkers where we discussed nothing but work. So I have month “off” and I’m having a hard time adjusting. I took Cooksey to his pulmonologist today, and we took his daddy to lunch, came home and napped, and started packing for our next adventure. Tomorrow, Cook and I are headed to my parents for a week, and after that we are headed to the beach. Lots of packing, lots of mommy and baby time. And I had a hard time relaxing today. Cook is really good about following me around the house while I clean or do laundry and that’s what we did for hours today. He followed me and played in whatever room I was in, but by himself because I was too busy crossing things off my to do list. It wasn’t until I got to “water plants” that I took a breathe. We were on the patio and Cook was entertaining himself with his water table toy, when I sat down and thought “this is where I’m supposed to be.” I had a glass of wine on the patio, played with C, and enjoyed having no agenda. It was the best moment of my summer thus far. I lived in the moment. I embraced the chaos that is having a toddler. I breathed. And I vowed to enjoy the time C and I have together for the next two weeks. I’ve planned a trip to Waco for tomorrow; Magnolia and Cameron Park Zoo. Just Mommy and Baby. Going slow and enjoying the ride. Breathing.

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Don’t Be

Here’s the deal: don’t be an asshole. Easy right? Seemingly, yeah. In reality, no. We all are. And here’s why I say that.

If you’re close to my family, you know there’s a lot of moving parts lately. If you want to know those parts, ask and I’ll inform you. But I say this because we are all always dealing with moving parts. And if you’re not, someone you know is. And you may not know those parts. And that’s ok. Just don’t be an asshole.

Anyway, moving parts. Changes. Tragedies. Surprises. Knock-you-off-your-feet-where-the-hell-did-this-come-froms. We all have them. And when we do, we need people. To reach out and extend their love. And when they don’t do that, we label them as an asshole. When they know something isn’t right, and they continue to go with the crowd in order to save their own ass. When they don’t extend that loving hand even though they are fully aware of the situation. When they bury their head in the sand. That’s an asshole.

Conversely, when you choose to trod around in your own proud, ignorant pants, you’re an asshole. When you sing you own praises rather than conversing with someone to learn theirs, when you belittle someone, when you choose not to strengthen a friend in need, you’re an asshole.

Don’t be an asshole. People carry enough on their shoulders without your pride crowding the air they breathe. Burdens and secrets and shame are heavy enough without you adding to the complexity. Be nice. Be kind. Be a light. People battle more than you know. Don’t be an asshole.

Walk this earth in a giving manner. Support. Care. Love. Just don’t be an asshole.

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You Know Who You Are

I know you are afraid. You fight demons that shouldn’t exist. You have a story that is harder than it needs to be. But you are strong. You are brave. You have taught me more in the short time I’ve known you than most people ten years your senior could teach me in years. Yet you don’t see your worth. You don’t see this resilient, beautiful, intelligent girl that rests beneath all the chaos and pain. You don’t understand that your suffering has a purpose. You matter, and the world needs you. Your friends need you. The quiet kid in class needs you. We all need you. Your unique brand of perfectionism and passion. The girl that doesn’t rest at “good enough.” The one that worries if she is enough for her people. And for the record, you are. You are more than enough. You carry the weight of the world on your shoulders, and it’s too much. Let go. Let God. Just be. You will find that those people you stress over will always be that way, no matter the amount of pressure you put on yourself to change them. You will find that the decisions you are faced with are easier to make with prayer and persistence. You will find that you are stronger and more capable than you believe. You will find yourself. Being young is hard, trust me I know. But the difficulties you face will fade. This too shall pass. Tough times don’t last, tough people do. As for me, I’m a big fan of yours. I see the brave, smart, funny, captivating, ingenious girl that you are. If only you could see your own worth. I will always be here. You have left an impression on me that can’t be erased, and I will be here for years to come. Don’t fret over tomorrow, each day has enough trouble of its own. Live for today, and know that I am here for all of your tomorrows. You matter.

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