Saturday, June 21, 2014

Day #82: Embracing Simplicity

My kids taught me a few lessons in simplicity this week.  The first completely frustrated me while the second made me glad I was hands-free during that time.  Let me share...

Yesterday I was feeling like I was letting my kids down.  All week we had stayed home except for a few nights when we had activities.  I was feeling a bit stir-crazy and figured my kids were as well.  After quiet time, I called them up and asked them to pick up their toys downstairs so I could take them on a little adventure.  I let them know we were going to head to the local library to check out some books and stop for an ice cream treat on the way home.  I expected some cheers, but instead I received a pouty lip, "ughs," and an angry "but I want to play" from my oldest and the next two followed suit.

Can you imagine my dismay?  What child would not want to pick up some new books and get some ice cream?  I'm not going to lie.  It made me angry and very frustrated.  Why were my children acting so ungrateful?  They had been playing at home for four straight days with little demands placed on them.  I was so annoyed I called my husband.  I think he was a bit dumbfounded by my exasperation.  After all, we had both read a blog post from We are THAT family and I happily embraced the idea that it was not my job to entertain my kids all summer.  I had certainly not entertained my kids all week.  They were happy playing together and I was so thankful for their enthusiasm each morning when they agreed upon what they were going to play.

Truth be told, all I really wanted to do was take my kids out for some special time with mom. Ultimately I think my feelings were hurt.  My reaction was not favorable and I think my kids were a little confused why Mommy was acting so crazy about their desire to simply play.  My mind was made up, though, and we were going on this impromptu adventure.

In the end, they thoroughly enjoyed the library and were very appreciative of the ice cream treat. Kids are a mystery at times.  This week my kids embraced simplicity and enjoyed a week of play. I shouldn't be complaining, as next week they will probably all be begging to go somewhere every day!

Today my oldest was off for an adventure with my parents, so I just had my younger three.  I wanted to do something special with them, so we packed up and headed to the Happy Joe's buffet and stopped for a special ice cream treat at Whitey's.  For most families in the area Whitey's may be the norm for ice cream, but since our oldest has a severe peanut and tree nut allergy, we are unable to go there as a family because it is not safe for him.  This was a special treat!  After serious consideration, we all picked out our treat and sat on a bench outside to enjoy it.  Shortly after sitting down, my daughter saw a green car.  Nothing fancy...just a car.  She pointed it out, giggled, and expressed how cool she thought it was.  A few minutes later she spotted another car she liked.  She looked at me and said, "Mom, it is so fun to just sit here and watch the cars while I eat my ice cream."

Huh.  It is fun, isn't it?  I joined in the game, as did my youngest son, and we had so much fun checking out all of the cars as they passed by.  A simple moment shared between a mom and her kids.  I am so glad I had left my phone in the car or I may have missed it.  Today I was thankful for my hands-free moment!


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