Thursday, June 18, 2009

slug catcher

This morning when I left for work my son was patrolling the driveway on his tricycle looking for slugs. I'm usually fond of bugs and creep crawlies, but I have a grudge against slugs. Maybe it's the damage they do to the garden? Maybe it's the Huge slugs we had at our first house in NJ 9 years ago? Shudder. Maybe it's the work/anniversary camping trip on Cheat Mountain when small slugs invaded our tent and everything else we brought. Yuck. Anyway, I just have a thing about slugs. But my son doesn't. He rides around looking for the slimy critters and pokes them with a stick until they slime up enough to stick to the stick and then he peddles over and bangs his stick on the block next to the driveway until they fall off behind the wall. Thank you D for removing the slugs! I appreciate it, I really do.

Thursday, June 11, 2009

nursing in an APLX

This is one of my favorite pictures from the last few weeks. Me nursing my daughter in the Anglepack LX at the Frontier Culture Museum.

Saturday, June 6, 2009

a tooth and a fox

My daughter has a tooth! I guess that explains the funny nursing habit and waking up every 45 minutes to nurse!

Oh, and my son won't go to sleep until he lays and egg in his nest. Then after nap he has to nurse the baby fox that hatches from the egg.

Tuesday, June 2, 2009

pea pods

I have a large pile of empty pea pods sitting on the corner of my desk today. This morning I stopped at the farmers market for lettuce (since our next batch is not ready yet) and couldn't resist the last bag of peas. I love peas! I bought them for my son - at least that's my justification - but I figured I should test a few before I take them home... I also got some cherry tomatoes. And the lettuce that I came for. Last evening my husband and son put up the cages on our tomato plants while I put our daughter to bed. The garden is looking really nice in the sections that we've gotten weeded and mulched. Hopefully soon I can get some more seeds in and we can finish up the mulching. Fun fun!

Oh, and we're going to have fresh broccoli with dinner! :)

what i need

Last evening I spent a little time weeding in the garden while my husband was mowing the lawn. Our son played in his digging hole at the edge of the garden and checked in with me periodically. Our daughter sat on my lap or in the hay beside me trying to eat weeds. And I listened. My mind was open. Thank you woowoo mama for the reminder to listen. And what I heard was that the reasons for my distress at working outside the home go beyond missing my children. Yes, I want to be with them, but it is more than that. Being a working mama means I have no time for the things that are important to me to be me and to be a mama. Deep things that seem simple but cannot be brushed aside like I have been doing. I have a deep need to provide for my family, not with a monthly pay check but with my own hands and my own self. It sounds silly. I mean, we have money to buy the things we need and want, why on earth would I personally need to be more involved. I don't know the answer to that, but it is what it is. I have been reflecting on this since last evening, and it makes sense. It is true. It is me.

Before we had children I was able to work And to do the things I needed to do to be me. I spent my free time growing plants, canning and freezing food, making things, etc. When we lived in suburbia and didn't have a large garden I made and canned our own soups to take to work for lunch. I cooked a lot. Baked a lot. I took fresh hot cinnamon rolls to my husband's work and fresh bread to seminars at school. And we were drawn home to the farm frequently. Now that I have children that deep inside part of me needs to provide for them. It is what I am meant to do. Not that I need to make everything for them, but a part of me, a big important part, is aching because I can't do what I am meant to do. I can't provide for their most basic needs in the most basic way. I have no time to cook and sew and can and teach. It's meant to be simple, and it can't be. Instead I have to take the round about path of working to earn money to buy the things and hiring others to teach them. And this is not a matter of "wait until they are older and then you will have more time to do the things that you need to do for yourself". No, what I need to do is provide for them! It is for me, but it's not that I want to have more time to myself, it is that I need to be a different kind of provider. And this is not something that I can do later. I only get one chance at this. I can't put these things off until the kids are grown, it won't be an option then.

A lot of these things are ideas that I have been flirting with for a while. Maybe I'm just hard headed or in denial, but these ideas are not new. Please guides, be patient with me while I try to grasp this and learn. Each time these ideas surface I take a little more of it to heart and remember for longer that it is true. I have been here before. There have been other times in my life where I felt too far removed from the basics of life and had to make major changes to recenter my life. Then gradually my life has moved away from that centering again. But I think we are nearing another big shake-up and recentering.

I feel is that there is a solution. It's not meant to be like this forever. So this morning I'm searching my mind and soul. What can that solution be? I don't expect it to jump out at me, but I think it's there somewhere. And it may take years to get there. But I also strongly feel that it will take all of our creativity and effort to make it work. If this is what we want (and it must be we, I cannot do it alone), then we must make it a big goal and take baby steps toward it. We must. Or the time will pass and the chance will be gone and it will not be what we Can do, but what we Could have done. And that will never bring happiness or contentment. So, please universe, give us the strength to put some effort where it is needed and find a way to meet all our needs, even our non-material needs.

Monday, June 1, 2009

one of those days

Today is one of those days where I want so badly to be a stay-at-home mom. I know that it is not possible, but I still dream that somehow it could happen. Every day I leave the most important things in my life. Every day I miss the little joys. Every day I am sad and feel an emptiness. Every day I am homesick.

I keep trying to get past this. To move on and accept and be thankful for what we do have. But I always end up right back here, with a lump in my throat.

I am thankful. Really I am. I am so thankful that my husband can be home - and is willing to be home - and is good at it. It is not an easy job. I am thankful that he gets to see all the little things I miss. I am thankful that I have a relatively flexible job without travel and usually not long hours. I am thankful that I have my own office and can pump milk for my baby without major inconvenience. I am thankful that I have a happy marriage and two wonderful kids. I am thankful for smiles and hugs. But darn it, it's just not easy to be away from my kids. I feel like I missed the most important calling in my life and now I will never get a second chance. I feel like I put my priorities in the wrong order before I had children and now I have to live with it forever.

Yes, I'm feeling sorry for myself, but it's one of those days.