Tuesday, July 1, 2008

The importance of Number 5

Yesterday I came across this list that I wrote during
Women's Conference two years ago. The class was on being "lighthearted but not lightminded" and I had just came out of one on the subject of "finding joy in motherhood".
Now, during this particular time in my life I was not doing a very good job of being lighthearted or finding that elusive mothering joy. We were then coming up on the third year of trying to sell our house in Texas, it was May and already getting hot and I had hoped to have seen my last sticky summer there. That plus trying to keep my house model-clean with 4 kids living in it (ages 3,5,7,& 9) had pretty much squashed the lighthearted joy right out of me.
So I was amazed at how really quickly I was able to do the assignment (and you can see evidence of my mindset at the beginning of the list- then I sort of came to my senses as I got closer to #1):
25 things that Make Me Smile (me,2006)
25. NO ANTS! (fleas, mosquitoes, roaches, etc.) in the house
24. the smell of clean sheets
23. a clean house
22. eating out (no cooking, no cleaning!)
21. dropping kids off at school
20. picking kids up from school
19.the smell of homemade bread
18.making cookies with my boy and girls
17. watching Big Tuna play with the kids
16. morning snuggles - kids in my bed
15. putting kids in their own beds at night
14. getting new scrapbook stuff
13. seeing my kids enjoy their scrapbooks
12.walks on the beach
11. watching my kids play together
10.letters and emails from friends
9. finding a great bargain
8. movie marathons with big T
7. Halibut's new words
6. Grouper's arm kisses
5. getting flowers from my kids
4. evening family walks
3. family prayers
2. my Temple marriage
1. knowlege of my Heavenly Father's love for me
Now, did you notice #5? Number 5 is the whole point of this post. I don't remember when my girls first started bringing me flowers - my pansies, weeds, the neighbor's prize roses - it didn't matter - all blooms were fair game. It was just what girls do. They even risked incarceration for picking bluebonnets in Texas (it's illegal) and I have the pictures to prove it! As they've grown older (and come to understand it's not polite to raid the neighbors flower gardens) I've received fewer and fewer blossoms.
So the other day when Halibut grabbed a fistful of leggy blooms growing beside the tennis court and brought them to me, I was thrilled. He had never made such a gesture before. No one taught him that he should do this - he was just thinking it might make me happy. Well, I made a big fuss abut it and he was so proud when we displayed them. (see green bottle, above)
The next thing I knew, he was bringing in armloads of brand new hydrangea blossoms from my only source of color in an otherwise monochromatic green, green, and more green yard. By then Orca noticed and decided to do likewise. They were filling every cup and bowl in the kitchen! By that time I had forgotten all about "number 5" and told them both, "Don't pick any more hydrangeas!"
Silence. Their smiles quickly disappeared.
I quickly tried to undo what I had just done by explaining that we don't have to pick all of the pretty flowers we see. Halibut's quiet little response:
But I thought they were beautiful
yes, they are. More now than ever.


Gina said...

What a wonderful story!

Nannie Neon said...

This is an awesome story. One can never have enough 'hand picked' bouquets unless one may have the Bloomin' Sneezes.