Last Saturday started like any other Saturday….
Mrs. Iverson was the first to wake up, “Mama! It is a beeeauutiful day! The shunshine is up!”. I squinted my eyes and looked up into her bright and smiling face. “Ten more minutes k?” I muttered. “Okay” she said as she snuggled back down beside me, “I love you”. “I love you too sweetie”…
I’m not sure if it was ten minutes later or not but the next person up was Lil’S. “Mom, what is Ivy doing?” she asked. I opened my eyes again. I heard the fridge shut downstairs. Oh geez! We both jumped out of bed and made our way downstairs where we found the little Mrs. on a chair in front of the stove with the skillet out, the eggs on the counter and her hand in the flour canister. “We’re having pancakes mom!” she said proudly and she made a slurping noise with her tongue which translates into “yum”. S and I smiled and joined in the preparations. Not a bad start to the day. I made a mental note to talk with Mrs. Iverson about the appropriateness of having “adult help” for food preparations that involve the stove.
Next we made plans to go to the park, to head downtown to buy presents for a birthday party in the afternoon…a very regular day.
When we were downtown we stopped for lunch at Five Guys Burger Joint (Obama’s fav or so J tells me). The girls we thrilled with sitting in the “super big, super high chairs” and ate every bite of their burger. Ivy proudly held the brightly wrapped birthday gifts all the way home. We ran into friends and stopped to chat.
We did get to the park and Lil’S biked for three hours straight once she got the hang of riding without training wheels!! Such an incredible mothering moment…all that time spent practicing, listening to her frustrations, her assertion that she would never be able to ride by herself…all of that gone in the instant that she put it all together. There was pure joy bubbling up and out of her as she squealed and laughed with delight. “Mom, are you still beside me?” she asked not daring to move her eyes from the pavement in front of her. “You’re doing it!!” I yelled from halfway across the tennis court. She turned her head to look and an enormous grin spread across her face. She sat a little straighter and looked a little more confident as she continued on and picked up a bit more speed. I didn’t think this moment would be that special. But it was. Really special. I wish I could bottle that moment and keep it forever…especially her laughter. The pure joy of it. The transformation from frightened and focused to confident and carefree…quite the milestone.
I promised to keep this a secret from daddy so Lil’S could demo her skills in a more dramatic fashion for him. So when we returned home, she went back out straight away with her dad and I stayed home with the Mrs. Who was very tired indeed and had fallen asleep on the couch. An hour later I decided to move her upstairs to bed. She woke just long enough to protest this move and so we decided to sit and rock for a bit in the rocking chair. She snuggled in closer, “thanks mama” she said. “For what?” I asked. “For rocking” she answered. I smiled and rocked and my thoughts drifted to dinner preparations and wonderings about how in the world I would ever get this girl to bed on time with a nap like this…”mama?” she said with her eyes still closed, “yes love?”, “mama, it was big day today” she said with a sigh “a really big day”. I laughed a little because I had actually been thinking in was a completely ordinary day. But then I looked back at the activities of the day through her eyes…it was a big day, an exciting day even.
Pancakes, a visit downtown, a restaurant, brightly wrapped presents, a party, the park, all finished up with a delicious nap on the couch. Such incidental things on their own…but for a three-year old, they were big. And I was glad for this reminder…that these small moments, the newly acquired, everyday skills like riding a bike, washing dishes, making breakfast are all…more than enough.
A reminder to take pleasure in the small, the ordinary, the everyday.
These are my big things while these girls of mine are still small…