Cabin fever. Yes? It seems to be a bug going around these days. The hours in February can easily be some of the most challenging of the year.
Last week, I shyly tried on a warm winter jacket that I was afraid would not fit me. It felt especially snug as it hugged my arms tight. Without trying to zip it up, I quickly took it off and looked at Josh. "It doesn't fit" I sadly said as I folded it over the kitchen chair next to me. Josh looked at me with heartbroken eyes and told me to try it on again. He was sure it fit. "Don't say that. Please try it on again. It fits. Try it on again." A little embarrassed by how snug it was, I tried it on again and slowly zipped it up. My arms unable to lift high from the snug fit. Josh hugged me tight and told me it fit fine. You look beautiful, he said. And it brought tears to my worn eyes. Beautiful, I thought. This season can hold long days. I don't ever feel beautiful. I have some extra pounds on me, my eyebrows are always crooked, my face is broken out and I have dark circles under my eyes. Beautiful, I thought. Thanking God for this kind of love. Realizing, just how much the word beautiful means to me now. As a teenager, my idea of beauty was being thin with light blonde highlights. Having a tan.
Beauty is love that is so deep that you see pain in a loved ones eyes when they see sadness in yours. Beauty is a child's head resting on a postpartum belly. Beauty is a friend that texts you back at 2 a.m, "I'm praying for you." Beauty is loving someone so much, you see past the human sides that other people don't try to understand.
What an amazing thing to call someone beautiful. Dear friends, you are beautiful. and I mean it. Hugging you tight.
We brought the snow inside on a freezing day. An activity we have loved in the past.
Winter at the zoo.
When we first pulled into the zoo parking lot, I saw a brave mother with three little boys getting out of a car. As we walked around, I saw her here and there. She began to look tired. Overwhelmed, as she chased the little ones. I smiled at her warmly as I held two of my own. We made eye contact more than once in the, "I get it" sort of way. We are all in this together, beautiful mama.
Eli has been taking steps! Sometimes, his siblings like to help.
Snow and cold. Cold and snow. Mostly cold... so we try to enjoy the snow when we can.
Throwing snow in the creek at Sullivan park.
Sitting on a park bench.
The Irvine girls came over for Valentine's day cupcakes and heart-shaped pepperoni pizza. YES!
When brothers attack.
Josh always surprises Josie with a Valentine. This year, he gave her flowers, a card and a stuffed bear. She was overjoyed!
My gift from Josh along with our little surprises to the kids for Valentines day morning.
Valentines day dinner
Red Velvet milkshakes
Ashton making sausage spinach tortellini soup. He loves helping me in the kitchen. He hasn't missed a night this week!
Some experiments by the kids -
Growing beans in a plastic bag
Testing sound vibrations with a can, a plastic bag and salt. Banging on a pan with a wooden spoon.
Volcanoes in water bottles. We did this until the vinegar ran out. They loved it so much.
Salt dough creations.
Liam made snakes and Ashton and Josie made bowls.
(artsy wall, eh?)
Camping out in the living room
Hope you are staying warm today. I love you.