Nearing mid-April, the last of the snow is just about gone. The sun hasn’t been bashful lately, although the air is midleadingly frigid. We made it through a brutal winter, and for me this felt especially successful because Michigan winters with infants, diaper bags, and strollers (in addition to boot-stomping, ice-scraping, & car warming) make every detail of daily life a challenge. I’d say I spent this winter hibernating with my cub, trying to figure out his little cycles and systems, and yet I’m still scratching my head as to how–at nearly 8 months old–this baby of mine doesn’t dependably take naps. For months, I stressed about it and tried as many methods as I could handle to schedule Oliver’s time, striving to be the mom I so greatly desire to be–the one who is in control & lovingly relentless about routine. The one who’s got it down.
I want to be her.
But, really, I’m more of a one-day-at-a-time, look-for-surprises kind of mom who actually kicks her heels up at whimsical spontaneity. I’m learning my little apple may not have fallen far from this tree. He hasn’t yet developed a solid nap schedule (although his nights are great!), but thankfully, though, whatever was causing a slight and perpetual fussiness has melted with the snow. And this glorious, bubbly, toothy child has emerged:
He wakes up grinning and spends his day steam rolling around the living room, looking up ever so often at me or Jack with a grunty laugh and ear-to-ear smile. Although the first 6 months with Oliver were beautifully blessed, 7 months was the turning point from a frustrated infant trying to figure himself out to a happy, happy boy.
It's true the youngest can set the tone for the entire family; therefore, the rest of us have been pretty darn happy too. Jack still can't get enough "brother time". With Ollie's dependable sitting abilities and Jack's (mostly) tender heart toward his brother, I even allow them alone time on the couch or in Jack's bedroom* so they can giggle while practicing the art of gentle wrestling**.
Josh has been happy blogging at sites such as The Marriage Generation and building a fire pit in the backyard so we can spend our evenings roasting the perfect marshmallow.
I've been happy snuggling my kids, starting a book club, and making buntings for no reason at all.
There's been quite a bit of hardship around us as loved ones deal with heartache, so I've been careful to savor these smiley days with my two (well, three) boys. And there's lots on the horizon for us that may interrupt our current ease: Josh has some big ideas he's sitting on & I might very well be a home-schooling mom come August. (I know, right?!?!?) For now, though, I keep trying to live my life as happily (and gratefully) as I can.
He certainly makes the goal an easy one: