I laughed last evening when a new friend, clearly a kindred spirit, said she visited my blog looking for knitting but scrolled and scrolled and couldn't find any. Our little Norah is the baby that changed the game in this house, and I feel excited if I manage to have the dishes done before we collapse into bed at night. Knitting? I tried yesterday but by the time I found the right-sized needles, an argument needed mediation and everyone was hungry.
In spite of a lack of time for myself and my own pursuits, I am pouring myself into this game of mothering. Each day spills over with discoveries, by the children and by us parents.
We are always learning about this world around us. The big wide world,
where alien-caterpillars come to visit,
where the afternoon sunshine urges us outside for quilt-cuddles and apple-picnics while we wait for the older kids to come home on the bus,
where trees overflow with gifts of beautiful fruit just calling to be made into jewel-colored jars of jelly and sauce,
and where a diminutive rooster has decided that Violet is a predator and attacks when he sees her, bravely defending his hens from a threat 20 times his size (we've had much fun re-enacting his attack, feet up and splayed, wings flapping, and "mouth" open in a terrifying display).
Then there is the world that is contained in a family, always growing and changing, adapting and listening to one another's needs, learning to navigate the different demands and personalities of each person.
A big brother who always helps out with a smile, especially when it involves caring for his little sister. Imagine his delight in learning that the Ergo could be adjusted to fit him! He gets up for school with nary a complaint, and is growing so tall and handsome my heart can barely handle it. He also kicks and hits his sisters when they get on his nerves. He's not perfect, but we love him anyway.
A big sister who insists that everything in the world must be fair, and makes her voice heard loudly until it is so, whether it means doing what her brother does, having the same number of jelly beans, or sitting in a certain beloved spot on the couch. This is the one who brings home caterpillars. She is a bit of a wildlife-whisperer, this one. Curious about everything, a crusader for justice, a vocal advocate for her rights, she likes to kick and throw things when frustrated.
A little sister who is happiest "with a grown up from her family", who loves to play one-on-one with children her age but is just as content to be on her own. She loves her blankie almost as much as she loves her Nanny. Her daily wish is that Nanny would come and live with us, and I don't blame her. She sings made-up songs and dresses in the wackiest colour combos we've seen yet.
And the smallest one, the game-changer, who learned to clap this week, who points and says, "Dat!" and the world slows on its axis. Her fuzzy, much-kissed head, her delicious cheeks and thighs, her busy hands and smiling face have brought so much joy into a family that already had an abundance of it.
One day I may post knitting projects and crafts again. For now, I find moments to capture and share briefly, because my days are so full of this: this thing that we call life.