Hello, my friends, happy middle-of-January. As I write this, the snow swirls outside, and I wrap my frozen fingers around a warm mug of tea. January continues to prove all the weather experts wrong and bless us with ice and wet and more wet. Just when it had begun to thaw, another round began. I have no complaint, I love to watch the brown blanketed over again with white and to see the pillows pile on the branches of our big spruce tree and fence posts.
I wonder what I will wish to remember about this day when I look back on what I have written.
I probably won't want to remember my fit of frustration and choice words toward the woodstove that wouldn't cooperate early this morning in the schoolhouse, or the way the toddler refused to stay in her room for rest time and I wanted to tear my hair out for just a few selfish moments of quiet. And how that same toddler poured all the cat food out on the carpet in the playroom when I wasn't looking before lunch. And I probably would be happy to forget the lunch dishes undone for the afternoon in the sink. But those are regular parts of my day and I guess without the mess the rest might not be be as precious.
I will want to remember the short time I had to read quietly by myself with the storm blowing outside, even if it was interrupted several times to reinforce obedience. I know I will be glad to remember the twenty minutes I set aside this morning to play on the floor with a mischievous two year old before lunch, who really needed attention. I will wish to remember Lyddie's happy smile of triumph after a song played especially well during our piano lesson and how today she learned about the grand staff and how all music is written and the new door that cracked open further for her today into the world of music.
And how we forsook that chilly schoolhouse when the fire just wouldn't light and cuddled in the warm house on my bed for our Circle Time, reading Mother Goose and Christina Rosetti and coming close to the end of Dragons of Blueland, us all enraptured by the adventures of Elmer and his friend, the dragon. I'll wish to remember how sweet it is to hear a four and six year old reciting most of the first Psalm from memory and their little sister's voice chiming in with familiar words. And how Lyddie produced the most lovely "a's" and "d's" in her handwriting book. And how Millie, by listening in to her sister's lessons, can tell time to the hour.
I will hope to remember Millie pulling me impatiently by the hand to the bedroom when I tell her we will get to read the end of The Bears on Hemlock Mountain together this afternoon, and Lyddie's bright eyes when she begged me to read just another chapter of The Land of Oz.
I am enjoying our school plans and since there is no garden or growing things, I get to use my leftover time knitting and cross-stitching and reading. Meals are simple and warm; soups and salads and casseroles served with a jar of homemade warm applesauce. That's all you need really in the deeps of winter. Afternoon baths for small people are a happy and warm way to pass the time indoors (these bath paints are so fun but we got them for a dollar each at Target! Do you have fun bathtub ideas beside the obvious?). I am not allowed to watch The Great British Baking Show (on Netflix) without Lyddie anymore, a mistake I'll only make once after the look of disappointment on her face when learning that she missed one of the episodes.
In previous years I have muddled through January but this year it is my favorite. It is peaceful. It is beautiful. I hope it is the same for you. Warmest wishes,