Friday, October 21, 2011

shift. a celebration.


It has been awhile. Struggling to find words. The right words, that pour from my spirit with ease. Peace be with you - as the summer is winding down, the autumn leaves are bursting out in their mellifluousness of lustrous, rich, and warm fall colors. How I love this time of year! Crisp air, a brisk wind to pass the crunchy leaves into your path and under your feet, a chill from that same wind to move you closer to the ones you love.

Aah, autumn - the real time of rebirth and new beginnings and boots and jeans and sweaters! Does it get any better than this? Homeschool is a new start, Isaac began grade six, Egan grade four, and we are awash in the symphony of newness and excitement and fear and trepidation and anticipation. I want to run and stretch my arms out to the autumn sun and thank my Creator for this lush beauty that I live in, for my beautiful children realizing little bits of their potential day by day - in the words of Master Yoda: Do or do not. There is no try.

This child never ceases to hurl me into an infinite whirlwind of love and adoration and an overflowing sense of all is well with the world when I drink in his brown eyes, full of meaning and acceptance and joy and contentment.
He does so much good for me. For all of us.

I hang diapers on the line while thinking about continuing to write my own story - because it is my own story, but struggle with what to actually say. All the while, I am tossing words and thoughts and ideas around in my head, in my notebook, thinking, juggling, tossing some more, and the words continue to elude me. Why? I'm not sure. Maybe because I am experiencing this underlying itch.

...the itch to have another baby, or perhaps it's the itch wondering why hasn't it happened yet? The itch to get the house ready for fall, for winter, for the new season upon us; an itch to snap bedsheets freshly washed into the sky like sails unfurled, snap them crisp and breathe in their heady, clean, smooth scent... the itch to get things in order, yet again, and again, and again... and again.

The itch to continue to tell my story, because that's what it is. That's all it is.

my story.

And that's all it needs to be. In the meantime, I'll still tell little stories within my story. And in the meantime, we'll have tea parties. With boys. And girl. And hats.

While wanting to blog about my life, our lives, a feeling of no one probably cares is sometimes pervasive... should I bother writing? But I remind myself I don't write for anyone else, really - although I adore comments and knowing that something I've said resonates with a kindred spirit somewhere else... and sometimes I feel a letdown in myself for not being more diligent here, sometimes I'm left wondering if life is supposed to feel more difficult with four children, and then some days I end up feeling like I am way too maxed out... I need to be easier on them, on him, on myself - those days where I need to chill.the.heck.out. Factor in heavy, heavy duty budget constraints, my Mr.'s new job, homeschooling two children, caring for two more littles - and any lingering creativity and energy to pour into writing is sapped away. Some days there is no-such-thing-as-chill under this hot mama's hot collar. And yet, in the midst of it all, I continue to fall unequivocally in love with each of these precious people God has blessed me with.  

For that I am eternally grateful.

There are so many of these tender brother moments these days... Jacob is taking this new found delight in his baby brother that is just so heartwarming. He can make Amos laugh like no one else can... much to the delight of Amos, and much to the delight of the rest of us.

And when the day shifts into evening, and night shifts into morning, you can find me again and again attached to my pump... yes, I'm still pumping.

I become mesmerized each morning, each evening with the hypnotizing, rhythmic singsong, whiz-whir, whiz-whir, whiz-whir of this pump - it does it's job, and I sit alone, no longer so awkwardly associated with this machine that pumps milk from my body for my youngest sapling to be nourished with the food God knows is best for him. (We tried cow's milk. That went over very, very badly. Back to the boob it is, figuratively.) 

But in all honesty, I am getting a little tired of it. Not sure how or why this is relevant. But it's just part of my story. Amen.
Then factor in the baby having ear surgery, this mama crying as she sang her sweet baby to sleep under the power of the anesthesia, trying with all my might to not weep loudly and from my guts at his side and be brave until he was asleep... goodness that is difficult. To feel your own child's hand go limp in yours is not something I would ever want to experience again. Oosh. Then our children have been auditioning for show business (huh? yes!), driving into Vancouver repeatedly for auditions... husband's ONE business trip (only one! praise the Lord!) and my dying iPhone, a dying MacBook, and a pooched camera make for a less than normal everyday life in a busy household, and it all equates to one very tired, worn-a-tad-thin blogless, wordless mama. With the itch and a hot collar no less. And with being a bit worn, I just feel... well... worn.
Nervous, on her way to a callback.

But still, I celebrate. Even if I feel nervous. Or overwhelmed. I choose to celebrate, because perhaps if I didn't, I might just come undone. So we all celebrate. It's a shift from one foot to the next, one choice to the next, one moment to the next, one day, one experience, and through it all - we soak as much of the goodness out of everything as we can. 
On one of our trips for an audition. Beautiful, picturesque, Vancouver, BC.
In celebration, I recall with much fondness the time we had with my family this summer, nearly an entire year after we moved west, making the trek over and through the Rockies, a mad-dash-across-three-provinces-in-one-day to see my family on the prairies where I grew up, to show my children where they come from. And to have the journey be part of the destination.

Soak it in, baby. Celebrate the journey. You only get one chance, one life. Soak, soak, soak.
And then soar.

And then we arrived. Saskatchewan, from British Columbia. Across Alberta. Over 1000 km away. And it was grand.

I celebrate the time we spent with my sister and her family, beautiful Sarah, who never stops feeding us. And who didn't want me to take this picture until she had her bread dough looking prettier. I was more interested in the dough getting into her wedding rings... and imagining the legacy left by the dough in those rings. Bless you, sweet sister. You are a Godly woman, and an inspiration for me to look up to, for so many reasons.

And her wonderful husband, Gabe. And their sweet fair-haired boys. Gabe and Sarah have blessed us beyond measure both in our family and in our marriage. But one thing I especially love about their little family? I really, really love how a short time after settling in, her littlest guy who really, really loves his mama... he becomes my little friend, he befriends and trusts me so that he'll even come to Auntie when he's sad... what an honor. What a gift. Such a blessing. And then the way they all love on us, and on all of my babies does such good things for my spirit.

The way my parents love on my babies does such good things for my spirit. And for theirs, too.

Grandma brought the vacation for real right into her yard, in the form of a paddling pool filled with warm water. My mom always helps the kids get all excited about little things, and has this joy in her that is much like a child. Oh, what, they want the paddling pool? Done. You want it superfull? You want it warm like a bath? You want lunch served in there? You want drinks with that? She even offered soap to make it into a giant bubble bath. Hours of floating in liquid bliss. Jacob still says this was the best time of his life. I love that she does those things, because they are things I wouldn't necessarily do. And children need those things. They need that kind of permission. They need to be allowed to shift, and to celebrate, child-style.

And for me, the time spent just lounging on the ground with my children, the sun shining down on us, warm breezes kissing our cheeks and watching hummingbirds flit by... this is the stuff I need. Relaxation. Really being present; for them, and for myself. In love and celebrating with these little people, celebrating my life, my history, and all that God has brought me through and blessed me with.

And oh, those glorious Saskatchewan skies.
And time at the lake.
Some of the best summers of my life were spent at a lake. 

I celebrate the glorious soaking in of sunshine. And the wonderful time where Joel and I are present to each other; where we shift out of our roles and look at one another with celebration, again. That is really worth celebrating.

I celebrate the glorious soaking in of family we got to bask in brought to us by my brother's generosity. It allowed our entire Rutherford family to all stay for a extended visit together, highlighted by the much anticipated marriage of a wonderful, beautiful woman to my brother. I am beyond thrilled to call Adele my sister, officially.

And oh, the glorious time spent lounging late coffee walking mountains water swimming diving ziplining cousins babies laughing laughing laughing crying as they made their vows feeling so incredibly blessed sharing food, sharing love, sharing laughter, and sharing lives. It was simply glorious. And the kicker? I get to call these beautiful, beautiful people my family

My sister. My best friend.
My older brother's four, missing the littlest, sweetest Theo.
My sister's boys on top, my brother's girls on bottom.
Most of The Rutherford grandchildren, not including my four, and Theo. And the three new babes on the way for two of my brothers and their wives, and my sister and her hubs. So many beautiful, beautiful people. Let it be known I would adopt any of these children in a heartbeat if the need ever arose. I l.o.v.e. each of these precious people. So much.

I celebrate the departure of summer, the changing of the seasons.
I celebrate the shift to teaching my children at home.
(Some days more than others.)


I celebrate this changing of the seasons, this shift that I see with more clarity now that we have been this far west for an entire year, for an entire cycle of seasons. The seasons change very subtly here; days filled with the brighter hues of summer shift and fade ever so slowly and surreptitiously into days melded of deep oranges, golden shades, burnished coppers and reds. You sense a subtle shift into wanting to wear long pants, full sweaters and boots. The shift of colors, of temperatures, of the season is so much more introspective than anywhere I've called home before, but now that it IS home, I can see the quiet trembling as the trees fold into themselves, and the deep breaths as plants fall aslumber for another long, cool and damp, gray, mossy and misty season. This is a glorious and wondrously peaceful shift, a rejuvenation into quiet. Warm. Cozy. Home.

He gave me a caramel apple. My favorite. He knows it, and tries to treat me with it whenever he finds them. So delicious. So sweet.
And the headline at our house right now? 

Amos can crawl.

I celebrate the triumphant eve of my littlest man's dawn of mobility.  
It's an army crawl, I'll give you that, but he can move. He can motor. And he does it fearlessly, without an ounce of hesitation. And when he first shimmied across the floor? I cried. I tried several times to get it on video... and finally got a few moments here and there because I was distracted and interrupted by the little-bit-bigger brother competing for attention. He would yell and run into Amos who then would cry, and then Amos would exact his revenge and scootch over onto Jacob and pull his hair with such fierce glee - and then Jacob would howl. 

Over and over, these two boys making each other cry. I have four or five videos, all containing some baby crawling, some mama squealing and sobbing, and one or both little boys wailing at the end. 

But when Amos actually moved across the floor on his own power, I bawled and squealed and clapped and cheered and cried. Really hard ugly cried. I cried so hard I hurt my neck.  Such hard work for this precious little man! And goodness - celebrating each milestone, I cry at everything this little man does. Somehow it's so meaningful because he has to wait so patiently and work so hard for things to happen. It is so meaningful.

Tonight he sat framed by the open front door, having crawled all the way over there, repeatedly... and he watched while the older three played with friends in the grass, on the sidewalk, in the street, and he yelled. He yelled to them with excitement, he yelled warnings to them... he just yelled and shrieked and squealed with his newfound independence. Kinda like he's got his own pumped up kicks. And when we play this song dubstep style, his crawl can kinda look like he's dubsteppin'. Cool.

He can crawl all the way into the bathroom - then he lies on the floor and listens to himself yell. It makes him laugh. It makes me laugh.

Phew. And now, I guess I found a few things to say. 

And it's all part of my story. It is. I celebrate it all. I soak it all up, and feel so blessed.

Happy Autumn.
Happy Day.
Happy Baby.
Happy Life.
Happy Shift. 

What do you celebrate?

Hope you had a fantastic week.


  1. Beautiful post as always my dear friend :)
    You have been busy! and I can't wait to see Amos in all his army crawling glory! These littles of ours our growing so fast!
    I too am feeling a little hot under the collar (love that!) with a four year old that doesn't want to listen while I have a pounding headache!
    We went to the same pumpkin patch!

  2. Lovely. Is it weird that I'm kind of jealous that you have a little Amos? Already having a special needs child I don't feel like I am overly romantic about the idea...I just see children with DS and I fall in love. Amos is lucky to have you all and you all are lucky to have him. I wish I had the money to begin the adoption through Reece's Rainbow.

    Our little darlings start by bringing us to our most ugly place and from there, they make us more beautiful on the inside every day.

    I'm so happy he is crawling. You will never celebrate milestones, big or small...even tiny, the same way ever ever again. There will be milestones that you didn't even KNOW were milestones and they will all make your eyes well up with tears.

    You are blessed :)

  3. Beautiful. I missed reading your words...heck I miss you all already! That time together was so precious and peaceful. Thank you for your beautiful family and your beautiful spirit! Sending much love through these Saskatchewan skies to that lovely British Columbia!!

  4. gorgeous - glad you're back :)

  5. It's about time! Now, can you make another post tonight? Haha. I love your blog, Laura. LOVE the pictures of mom and dad with Amos. Seriously, though, how is it that I look so old in that picture? When did that happen? Love you all, so much!

  6. I love your blog Laura! I knew your husband Joel many years ago in his camp counselor days at Choral Camp... I can't even remember how I came across your blog but I really enjoy reading about your family and your thoughts on being a child of God, a mom, a wife...May the Lord continue to bless your family! Sarah Bokhout

  7. sob sob sob...I just love you! What a wonderful blog! You are truly blessed! and I to know u too! (and that beautiful sister of yours) Wonderful pictures! and p.s. I look up to you!

  8. WOW. Beautiful post! Your family is gorgeous and your life seems very happy and full. So glad you are celebrating and soaking it in. Blessings!

  9. I just took a big sigh and thought, "Okay, there...I got my Laura fix." I've missed you, but can totally understand your absence. It's life. Just know I think about you and your entire beautiful family! And Amos....Oh, that little man!! Sooo many gorgeous photos of him, your family, your land, your life....wishing I could experience it with you for reals :)

    Amos, Amos, Amos....can't stop thinking of Amos and all that he is in that precious little bundle of a babe.


  10. Laura, I am SO glad we are "twitter" friends and even in the same "area."

    This is beautiful. And THIS is where I am coming when I need to Think On Such Things: true, right, lovely, noble, praiseworthy...

    Thank you for being such a LOVING and LOVELY parent. It does make me want to strive to be moreso myself. Bless you! And thank you for all YOUR encouragement. xoxo

  11. Sorry I didn't comment earlier... it's still fall here though, so very relevant post for me still, re the season...and the celebration part is ALWAYS relevant...thanks...inspiring stuff.


make no mistake, I am smitten with your words. please say hello, or pour something out - you will make my heart happy.

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