Monday, May 21, 2012

Time Well Spent

The long weekend is coming to an end.  I am sitting in my living room while the girls watch Tangled for the 197th time and reflecting upon the last couple of days.

Lately I feel acutely aware of how fast time is flying by.  It feels like the kids are changing more rapidly and developing real personalities of their own.  They are not babies anymore...and while I don’t find myself stricken with baby fever (2 is just fine thank you very much)...I am sad to see them grow up.

Just as I wrote that my youngest came running to me crying Mama and wanting to crawl into my lap.  She doesn’t like the bad guys in the movie...and I am the one that can save her from them.  I guess she still needs me sometimes.

Amazing times lay ahead for sure...amazing moments that I know I will love and cherish just as much as the ones that have past. But just in case I am trying very hard to remember these moments as they happen. And trying to make the time to create some great memories.

This weekend started with a girl’s night out to see Stars on Ice.  Oldest loves figure skating and has watched the Olympic gold medal performance by Virtue and Moir a hundred times. I took her to Stars on Ice last year and she loved it.  This year I decided that youngest would enjoy it too and decided to brave taking them both.

We started the night with a fancy dinner at McDonalds – a special treat – and then took a quick detour to the car wash on the way to the show.  I love watching my kid’s faces as we go through the car wash.  They are equal parts terrified and enthralled. Both of them cover their ears but grin broadly.  So funny.

We arrived at the show with just a few moments to spare and managed to get through the first half with no issues.  They even waited until intermission for a bathroom break.  About 10 minutes into the second half I started to lose integrity with youngest.  She wanted to get down, walk up and down the stairs, dance and sing.  She was hungry, thirsty and tired.  In the end we had to leave early but that was fine by all of us as oldest was nodding off in her chair as well.

Driving home with the girls asleep in the backseat I realized that this was the start of something.  The start of being able to take both of them out to an event without too much hassle or too many outbursts.  I know it won’t always be perfect...they will have meltdowns and I will bust out the mean mummy voice from time to time.  But that won’t be the norm...and that is one of the benefits of the kids growing up.

Saturday morning came full of sun and promise...the promise that it would be the last sunny day of the long weekend.  Nothing new in Vancouver...May long weekend is always a bust weather wise.  So we decided to take full advantage. 

Bike riding, playing at the park, blowing bubbles...the usual stuff.  We ventured to the mall briefly to find flower girls dresses for the girls.  They will both be in their auntie’s wedding in July. Amazingly we found the perfect dresses without issue.  Back home and back outside.  We ended the day with a barbeque at my aunt’s house...perfection. It was another late night for the girls and they were practically asleep before their heads even hit the pillows.

The next morning a miracle happened...I opened my eyes and the clock read 8:36am...and the kids were still asleep!  Hallelujah!

Unfortunately the rains came that day as well.  So instead of playing outside we decided to bake.  Banana Bread was the recipe of choice and the girls really enjoyed the process. Especially the part when we added the chocolate chips.

Hubby spent the morning planting all the flowers on our decks and had an on again off again helper - youngest may wind up having his green thumb. 

I am so glad that hubby loves gardening because I love the way the flowers look but have absolutely zero interest in planting them myself.

Then it was off to a birthday party and swimming lessons.  I love swimming with my girls.  They are both fishes...and have no fear...which scares the living daylights out of me at times. But I would much rather that over having them be afraid of the water.  We swam for 90 minutes and finally decided our fingers and toes could not get anymore wrinkled.  It was time to go home.

Hubby and I were both exhausted so we decided to stop for dinner at Tim Horton’s.  And sitting there in the mainly empty restaurant watching my girls eat soup and bagels...I took a mental snapshot.  Not of a specific moment but more of the feeling that I had.  A feeling of family and love and pride.  I am truly proud of my children. 

They are funny and clever and creative and sweet.  I am amazed by the stories they tell and the insight they have on things.  They ‘get’ jokes and make me laugh everyday. 

Monday morning dawned and once again the house slept late.  Hubby – used to early mornings – was up first but the rest of us slept until almost 9.  Seems like we all needed a long weekend with some down time.

The plan for Monday was to sort through all of the girls’ toys and books.  They got so many gifts for their birthdays and we needed to make some room for them.  I also wanted to take the chance to teach them about charity and get them to select some toys to donate. We explained to the kids that some kids don’t have any toys to play with and oldest was so troubled by that thought that she kept trying to donate some of her favourite toys. Such a gentle heart she has...

The kids started out enthused by the prospect of ‘ogamizing’ the house but after about 45 minutes they were happy to let me make all the decisions for them (aka – do all the work). 

I am a very happy person when things are organized – it’s just too easy to let things get away from us.  I get so mad when the kids pull pants out of their drawer that are too small for them...but its my own fault that they are in there in the first place.

Once we were finished with toys and books we tackled (some of) their clothes.  And during that process of trying on new clothes to make sure they fit they each insisted on changing into one of their new dresses.  And for that moment I took not only a mental snapshot but an actual one as well.  Because I could not believe how grown up they looked.  I wondered who are these people and what did they do with my babies?

Several hours later - they are still wearing the dresses and I keep catching myself watching them and shaking my head in disbelief.

Time flies and moments are easily missed.  These are moments that aren’t life changers...but are meaningful just the same.  They are distance markers on the road of life. And we should always be watching for them.  I am going to try to do just that...

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