It is going to sound simple and obvious, (because it is), but it made a huge difference in our day-to-day life. Are you ready? All I did was make an intentional effort to slow down and include Reed in things that I would normally task my way through. Instead of rushing to get lunch on the table and do fifteen other things at the same time, I started taking a minute to show Reed a piece of fruit prior to cutting and serving it, letting him feel the fuzz on a kiwi or see what a bunch of grapes looks like on the vine. (I would be willing to bet that Reed previously couldn't identify many fruits or vegetables in their whole form! He probably thought that grapes grew in half circles in the fridge). :) Instead of trying to rush through the dishes, I started inviting Reed to help me wash them. When I unload the dishwasher, Reed pulls up a chair and sorts the silverware caddy into the silverware drawer (minus the knives). Obviously, this applies to a million things throughout the day and not just fruit and silverware, but for some reason I especially needed to slow down in the kitchen and at meal times.
One of my friends once commented to me that the worst days are always when you have an agenda. It is so true. When I let being a mom be my job for the day, and allow any extra to-dos to be icing on the cake, the days go so much more smoothly!
Of course, I still find myself wrapped up in my own agenda lots of times and I do have laundry and cleaning to keep up with, but I try to be all in with my kids. And remembering to "stop and smell the roses" with them makes a big difference in our day.
|Goofing around with my little man|
I was reminded of that principle this week. Reed, Molly, and I were sitting at the table eating lunch when a toppling noise sounded from inside the freezer. "What was that noise?" said Reed. I replied, "That was the ice maker in the freezer... making ice." Reed's eyes got big and he asked, "The fridge can make ice? All by ITSELF?"
I smiled and thought for a second and then told Reed that ice was just frozen water. That the freezer has a machine inside that makes the water really, really cold until it is frozen so we have ice cubes to use. With an idea, I jumped out of my seat and got an ice cube from the freezer for Reed. I let him hold it and we talked about what it felt like, that it was really cold and hard. I repeated again that ice is frozen water, and told Reed that if we put it on the table by us, where it is warmer than inside the freezer, the ice cube would melt. We stuck it in a bowl, and kept an eye on it. Right before nap time, (which was just a few minutes later), I let Reed feel the ice cube and discover that it was getting slippery and wet. When he woke up, he was thrilled to find a bowl full of water. Then he dumped it on the floor. :)
Reed was so excited to tell Daddy about the ice cube melting into water that evening. It made me smile to be able to enjoy learning with Reed just by slowing down and being fully present with him at lunch time.
*Please note, not even a science experiment can delay or affect nap time... That is a very agenda-worthy part of the day. :)