My sister Nancy has about my favorite blog. She had three babies in like 3 years and I happen to know she has her moments of frustration (because she often calls me when they occur). But her blog is a big fat ode to the joys of having and raising children. Nancy does a great job of finding and highlighting and feeding off those great moments. I think Elder Ballard would be proud--his conference talk where he recommended mothers focus on the "shining moments" is one of the only GA talks on motherhood that made me feel actually recognized and understood and appreciated (as opposed to condescended and saccarhine--but we won't talk about that).
So, inspired by Nancy's recent post, here's my current list of favorite shining moments.
The way Jesse nudges up to me throughout the day just to get some mommy contact.
The way the kids all seem to feel you can't properly start your day without climbing into Moms' bed for a while.
Roscoe's half-manly, half-boyish, gangly adolescent self, with his still-pretty face peeking out of his nasty mop of hair.
Jesse's sweet baby voice and the still-new joy of hearing it say words to me.
Seeing Roscoe put his scriptures away after quietly having his own personal scripture study in the morning--all with no prompting from me.
When my kids interact with each other, play with each other, talk to each other, look up to each other, hatch schemes together.
Watching Roscoe pass the sacrament on Sunday, and watching the little kids closely watch him do it.
That Levi has finally succeeded in making baskets in the full-sized hoop and how happy it makes him.
That FINALLY spring seems to be here.
That Mark, more than anyone else on God's green earth, gets--and often appreciates--my inside jokes and allusions.
Mark's dark hair--I'm trying to enjoy it while it lasts (in color and quantity).
That Mark seems to genuinely not care about what age and childbirth have done to my body.
Having a backyard with a tramp and swings and playhouse and sandbox and tree with weird ropes hanging from its branches and sticks decorated with glitter.
Haley's starbuns and dimples and black eyes.
Hearing Haley sing ridiculous, falsetto songs to herself when she's supposed to be sleeping.
Seeing that bright aura of light over each of my children. To me they stand out in any crowd as the brightest and best.
My master bedroom with its big windows and deep tub and high ceiling and cushy bed and locking door.
Looking around the dinner table and seeing that everyone is here.
The hours at night when Mark and I can hang out together and finally have an uninterrupted conversation.
Watching my children speaking proudly of and care for Jesse like a bunch of little mothers.
Mark's mellow chuckle of sincere admiration when Logan regales him with silly stories and movie impressions during dinner.
The way Logan slams open the door and whoops into the house after school.
Having a driveway strewn with scooters and a backyard strewn with dirty socks.
Making bread and cookies and watching the kids eat them.
Walking into church with a long row of children following me like ducklings.
Running errands surrounded by a boisterious crowd of children, like my own personal entourage.
Driving a white Dodge Caravan--the boringest car in the universe--and thinking, "I may look like a shallow Utah sell-out, but really I'm a very fascinating person!"
Seeing food in the pantry.
When everyone comes back home in the afternoon.
That family and parenthood figure prominently in my children's life plans. Most notably Levi, who says he'll have 8 children and 4 babies and, thank heavens, a nanny. But even Logan, who claims he will never marry because that's gross and so he'll adopt his children.