"Childhood is fun!"
Surprising words coming from my oldest daughter who, at not quite twelve years old, is in quite a hurry to grow up. She wants desperately to be old enough to be independent.
She wanted clay which we didn't have. Being the creative girl that she is, she decided to create her own. She dug up some dirt, added some water, and Voila! She had clay. By the time I came upon her, her six year old sister had also gotten in on the action and they stood at the concrete table in our front yard. As I approached, they called "Hey Mom!" and waved, baring their palms that were covered in red dirt. They smiled. They giggled. Their joy was exuding from them.
Admittedly, my first thought was, "Ugh! What a mess! I hope they didn't get any on their clothes." Fortunately, their happiness drowned out that voice in my head. AS they went inside to wash up, even my middle daughter got in on the action, chuckling as she squirted soap for her sisters so they didn't have to touch anything with their filthy hands.
As they laughed together over the kitchen sink, my oldest said those words. "Childhood is fun!"
Yes, it is, my love. At least it should be.
I'm not going to lie to you. I have been stressed lately. We are in the throes of the last two weeks of school, so testing and class parties and craziness are in full swing. I work at a church, but I will be out of town the next two Sundays, so I have been feverishly trying to get things in order so they will be ready for others in my absence.
One of those weekends (this weekend!), I will be at BlogU, a conference for bloggers. I will get to meet so many of my online friends in person for the first time. I will also be traveling alone - something I have almost never done. I am equally excited, nervous, and overwhelmed.
The second weekend, we will be heading to the beach with my husband's family - an annual tradition. I can't wait, but the preparation to pack up five people for and entire week away is big. And, because of all the other things, it seems I have no time to get it all done.
I'm sure the other people in my house have felt my stress and I know that my temper has been a bit short.
Just for a moment, though, all that stress melted away. It was fleeting, but for a brief few seconds, I was lost in my children's laughter and happiness on a lovely (almost) summer evening.
My beautiful girls reminded me to laugh and relax. They reminded me that it's ok to try something new and get dirty. They reminded me that childhood is fun.
Always remember to laugh and have fun, my dears. Even when you are stressed, or struggling, or sad always remember to find the joy. (And, thanks for reminding me to remember, too!)