6:45 am My alarm goes off. I hit the snooze button and wish for 5 more minutes. I reluctantly get out of bed, pack Leah’s lunch, wake her up so she can get ready for school, feed her breakfast and check my email. The other kids start to tumble downstairs one at a time.
7:30 Micah and Levi
I make a pot of coffee and work on the waffles that my children have requested for breakfast.
8:30 We are all sitting around the table eating.
8:50 Children are fed and kitchen is clean so I get ready for the day. (Today, this does not include a shower…just a lot of body spray!)
9:30 I am back in the kitchen prepping for our picnic lunch.
9:45 All the kids are at the table and we start our school work.
10:30 Snack time
10:50 Kids start finishing their morning work and trickle off to get dressed. Yes, I know it is almost 11:00 and we are still in our pajamas. This is one of the benefits of home schooling!
11:15 I finish packing our picnic lunch, throw a load in the washing machine, gather sweatshirts and water bottles and herd children towards the minivan.
11:40 11:45 11:50
11:55 Leave our house, heading to the park. We spend the next couple of hours running, climbing, swinging and playing with our baby cousin Eva. During this time I feed, water and clean 6 children, kiss 1 skinned knee, wipe 2 snotty noses and mediate 3 disagreements.
2:00 Pick up Leah from school
2:15 Arrive home and the kids get their 30 minutes of electronic time. I spend this 30 minutes unpacking the car, listening to voicemail, going through mail, starting the dishwasher, packing my gym bag, wrapping a birthday present, transferring laundry to dryer and paying a couple of bills.
3:00 All kids to table to finish our school work/Leah’s homework. When they finish their assignments they cut out snowflakes and eat their afternoon snack.
4:00 Load up and leave house, heading to the gym. I spend a lovely hour in class, sweating and having quality ME time!
5:30 We arrive at the Matos home for a family birthday party. Thank you Jessica for feeding my family dinner!
7:00 I send Joel and Scott off to stand in line for their first ever midnight premiere event!
7:45 We arrive home. I facilitate pajamas, teeth brushing, bathroom using, drinks of water, taking of medicine and saying of prayers. I also feed the dogs and wipe a bottom.
8:30 I come downstairs after the first round of tucking everyone in. Tonight is a good night! I never get called back upstairs. Everyone goes right to sleep!
8:35 I start unloading the dishwasher and pull the laundry out of the dryer. My phone rings. A dear friend is in crisis. I spend the next hour listening to her cry and praying for her.
9:30 Going to finish unloading that dishwasher and folding those clothes! Nope…another dear friend who I have not talked to in 5 months calls. We spend a lovely 30 minutes chatting and she reminds me of the importance of listening to your children. Don’t let the tasks of the day interfere with the job of being available when your kids need you!
10:00 I prep lunches for tomorrow and decide the dishes and laundry can wait for another day!
My days are filled with the mundane. Dishes. Laundry. Feeding. Washing. Mediating. It is so easy for me to focus on the tasks that need to be accomplished and to lose sight of what is really important. And then, every now and then, I experience a moment that reminds me – I am doing work that will last for eternity. This. Mothering. It is eternal.
Last week, Scott walked into the kitchen as I was making yet another meal for the family. He smiled and said, “Honey, you are living the dream!” I swatted his behind as he walked by, but his tongue-in-cheek comment stuck in my mind.
It is true.
I am living my dream.
My whole life I knew that I wanted to be a mother. I wanted to stay home with my children. I wanted to be the one who wiped their noses and kissed their scraped knees. I wanted to be the one who hugs them when they wake up and when they go to sleep.
You see, here are some events from my day that did not make my task list….
When Levi woke up and climbs into my arms, lays his head on my shoulder and settles in for some Mommy cuddles.
I am loading the dishwasher and listening to Joel and Micah play wrestling in the other room. As Joel holds Micah in a head lock, he says, “I love you, brother.”
Naomi writes her name for the first time as “Naomi P.”
Leah sits next to me and asks me to kiss her forehead. For no reason really. Just because. And then she asks a second time.
After I finish my class at the gym, I walk through the door and Hannah drops what she is doing, runs up to me to give me a hug, and says, “I missed you.”
At the park Micah falls down while he is running. Hannah puts her arm around his shoulder and leads him over to where I am sitting.
Joel and I are discussing a situation that needs prayer, he says, “Mom, let’s pray about this right now.” And then he kneels down and talks to Jesus.
I watched a video recently with an interview of a house mother in the Bring Love In ministry. Do you remember? The ministry we worked with while we were in Ethiopia? They partner widows and orphans and create forever families.
This mother said something that I love.
“Some people preach. Some people sing. This is what I do. I mother.”
This is what I do.