You know, it's winter. Winter winter winter. Though the girls keep calling it Valentine's Day now that it is February. Like the whole month is Valentine's Day. I've mostly quit trying to explain the difference between a day and a season and major and minor holidays. Whatever - we'll just celebrate all the things.
I regularly read the Modern Mrs. Darcy blog for her book recommendations and other musings on life, and she posed an interesting question - "What things are saving your life right now?" As she points out, there are often things killing us, and they are easy to articulate. (here are a few of mine) But, I figured I'd take this opportunity to exercise some gratitude for the things big and small that are saving my life right here in the middle of winter.
1. My Friends. I know it may sound cheesy or cliche, but I get by with a little help from my friends. I've got great friends near and far, and I'm so privileged to do life with women that I treasure. This sun-drenched picnic lunch was one example of how life-giving friends are to me. I would much rather do life and lunch with people I love.
2. Awesome new magical sippy cups. They don't spill - like, ever. They seem so high-tech and fancy, and the twins love them. I also feel like this helps them get a little closer to drinking out of regular cups - though I am in no hurry for that day to come, only because of the spills that come with it. You can get them here on Amazon. (just thought I should tell you that it's not an affiliate link, because I have never figured that out, so i really get nothing out of the deal if you order, but they really are that cool.) If you have young kiddos, get the new cups - they are life-saving. And sticky floor saving.
3. Magical Tidying. I keep talking about it, but it really is saving my life right now. I'm finally actually putting all of the things in order, slowly, but surely. And I love an organized rainbow. Or two. (Third rainbow of bows is in the littlest girl's room, and she was napping when the pictures were taken, and naps are always saving my life, so I decided not to interrupt that.)
4. Hearts. I unashamedly love Valentine's Day. For me, it comes at just the right time - smack dab in the middle of winter when I need and want something pretty to celebrate. The LOVE mantle just makes me happy, and doily hearts are magic.
5. The gorgeous weather. The last several days have truly been glorious, and I've been reveling in our high sixties and sun. They are manna and salve and all of the good life-saving things. And the kids can go outside. Insert all the praise hand emojis.
6. Reading books. In the past year and a half or so, my love for reading has been rekindled at full force, and I'm devouring books that I've never read before. I think for most of the early years of motherhood, I forgot that authors keep writing new material and that myriad worlds and people await just by turning pages - or more often in my case, by pressing play for the audio. When much of my time is spent doing jobs that occupy my hands, listening to books keeps my mind so happy.
7. Podcasts. I jumped on the Serial bandwagon last year and realized that podcasts were an amazing untouched marketplace for me. As a double bonus - they are FREE! I'm still just scratching the surface, and I've lately been binge-listening to The Happy Hour with Jamie Ivey. She's had on so many fun people, and it really does feel like conversations I would want to have. I find myself almost chiming in, and then I remember that I am not actually talking with them. That's the only bummer about The Happy Hour.
Those are just a few of the things that are saving my life right now. Some of them, like the weather, will probably change by next week. Or tomorrow. My heart is full of gratitude for these things that help fill me up or make me smile or make my life just a hint easier.