Sometimes Erik and I ask ourselves if we were really in Maui just a couple of weeks ago. Life has picked up right where it left off and Maui sometimes feels like a figment of our imagination :) These last two weeks have been busy - especially this week. There have been so many thoughts running through my mind but I don't feel like I've had the time to actually think through each one. I've procrastinated the bookkeeping for Erik's business for too long and now I need to get it all sorted out for tax time. It's funny how much I can accomplish under pressure though. Something that I have been putting off for months and months has really only taken me a few days to sort through. I also got my second work assignment this week. I'm really enjoying this job and feel so thankful for it, but it did add some extra stress to an already busy week. But I managed to finish what I needed to do quicker than I thought and so today I feel like I can slow down and catch my breath a bit. I think I'm ready for another vacation :)
This is probably the dilemma of many mothers, but the desire to get things done and the desire to be a good mother often seem to be at war with each other. When I have accomplished a lot during my day I feel a lot of satisfaction. But getting a lot done usually takes its toll on the kids (they watch more TV, get less of my attention, etc). There is a different kind of satisfaction that comes from knowing that I am being consistent with my kids and then seeing them respond to my love and discipline. But those are the days when the house is a disaster and my to-do list is still as long as it was the day before. It's tricky to find a balance.
The kids have been pretty good though. I suddenly realized the other day how much things have changed. The changes always happen so gradually that I often don't recognize how far we've come. But there has been some significant progress. First of all, I've noticed how well Micah & Keziah are getting along. I remember some days I spent putting Micah in the naughty corner over and over for hurting his sister. And Keziah used to be so over-sensitive about things, crying if Micah would even look at her funny. But now she has toughened up a bit. She loves playing rough with him and she thinks the kid is hilarious :)
The other point of progress is how well Micah is going to bed at night. Bedtime with him has been an on-going saga ever since we took away his soothers a year ago. But finally it seems to be a non-issue. He's not napping every day anymore, but he stays in his room for at least an hour of quiet time (about the length of his "Holy God" CD) without putting up a fuss. I think he's just getting older. Even his obedience level has stepped up in the last little while.
Of course, things aren't perfect around here :) Keziah seems to be cutting all of her remaining teeth at once (molars and eye-teeth) so she has some cranky days and rough nights. She is also showing her strong personality more and more - screaming and throwing her body down when she's upset or wants something. I can't remember when we started taking disciplinary actions with Micah, but I'm guessing that we're coming to that point with Keziah.
On the topic of progress, it's neat to see Micah learning new things and applying them. He is generally a pretty good eater but I wanted him to get the idea that we need to eat lots of different kinds of food in order to be healthy. So I found an eating chart that I got from the health unit when I was first pregnant. It has the 4 food groups listed and tabs you can pull out to mark how many servings you've had each day. Micah has really gotten excited about it. The other day we made a smoothie for a snack and he got out the chart so we could figure out what food groups we were getting. Then he asked if there was any meat in the smoothie. So I told him that if we added flax seed (which I've been getting into lately) then we would be having a meat/protein serving. He was all excited to add it in :) And he knows he can't mark a vegetable serving on his chart unless he eats his veggies at supper, so it's working well so far!
We've had some nice days this week and have tried to make the most of them. Usually our excursions include a trip to the park, but unfortunately, for Micah, this was the outcome of one of our walks this week:
He had chosen not to nap that day but was obviously exhausted. He was so upset and disappointed when he woke up and we were back home! And, by the way, my make-shift double stroller seems to still be doing the trick. Up until now I usualy put Keziah in the back, but I've tried switching them around lately. Neither of them seem to mind too much but I still long for a better stroller some days...
Another afternoon this week we took a picnic snack to the park.
Classic boy - finding bugs, digging in dirt, throwing rocks and sticks into cool places...
I'm hoping this weekend will be relaxing after a crazy week. I long to sit down on a warm beach with my journal and try to make sense of my chaotic thoughts. I guess the beach may not be a reality, but hopefully I can find time to just rest and be still this weekend. Perhaps the memory of Maui will be enough to keep me warm...