[A post written for my benefit. Bear with me!]
Here we are, almost to the second week of January. Wow. Really?
New Year’s Eve caught me unprepared (as it seems to have done for several years counting.) Where did the year go? Sand slipping between my fingers — it can seem like a vapor. And yes, in some ways, it is. But how good it is to know that God saw those days, and the service that filled them, as seeds sown.
And a pause, laying in bed on New Year’s Eve, gave me a chance to recall the year.
2011 began with a bang. Literally. Josh and Carson showed up with sledge hammers and trash bags that first week and started the huge project of renovating the front rooms of our house. Some weeks of big progress, many weeks of chipping away, and by August, our floors were oiled, our walls painted, and it was all done enough to settle in and be ready for a new baby. (Not that she needs a new music room, but having the grand piano out of our bedroom seemed like it would be a nice idea!)
Olivia moved in that month, too. She lived in our yellow guest room for 9 months, and was sunshine to our family. She befriended William when he was still hesitant about anyone but Mama, and watched him grow from baby to boy. She joked with Ryan, played Legos with Jameson, read books to William, and quietly slipped alongside me to fold laundry or set the table or just smile. We loved, loved, loved her.
January also found me sitting in a chair, sleeping on the couch, and generally hiding from the world as much as possible. Morning (or day) sickness took all the unction out of me, but somewhere in February, I started to feel like myself again. And then in March, somewhere around week 18, I found Regina Willette and a homebirth was planned, again. Once again, my pregnancy passed with no complications, and anticipation and excitement grew along with my belly — which was, once again, huge!
The spring was beautiful, if a bit slow at times, and we passed the time with lots of garden rehab and walks and preparations for CFA’s Cinderella and The Glass Slipper. William enjoyed his first year of being a “big boy”, and he and Jameson played outside for hours, finding favorite spots in the yard for their pirating and cowboying and other exciting things. And bikes, of course. For hours.
We had a visit from our friends Emre and Sevi in January, and then Ryan and I flew to California in March. Besides enjoying the chance to see our very-missed friends, it was also our first overnight travel without kids since pre-Jameson!
Trips to Maine and Long Island and Montreal, buying our neighboring field and a new roof and chipping away at the renovation, lots of trips to Beans’ pool and Nana’s yard and quiet days at home — all of this, and the summer was over. How quickly it goes!
Beatrice was born, William broke his arm, Olivia moved back home, Jameson had a bonfire birthday, Louissa and Josiah prepared for and then celebrated their wedding, William turned 3, and we eased into a bit of “real” Kindergarten work.
CFC began meeting in two locations, we began hosting a large and exciting Young Couples meeting, and Jameson started attending Friday School (and was quite pleased to be in the Christmas concert!)
Washing machines spun, the refrigerator was filled and emptied, filled and emptied, and dishes were washed at least 3 times a day. Bedsheets were changed, diapers outgrown, manners taught, attitudes addressed. Lego towers were admired, Playmobil carriages assembled, and dress-up creativity applauded. Sometimes I got out of my pajamas before 7am, and other days, I just put clean ones on before bed. Some days lists were crossed off with vim and vigor. Some days we barely got through bare essentials. Every day we did our best to love one another and honor Jesus. And two, then three, little people grew and grew and grew.
So, yes, sand between my fingers. Vapors. But somehow, in His economy, beads strung on the thread of time, all adding up to more than we can measure. I look at this past year with this confidence, and it shapes my perspective on the year to come:
Do not be deceived; God is not mocked. For whatever a man sows, that he will also reap.