Do you ever have those moments -- happy moments, calm, where everything feels right in the world -- and while experiencing them you become acutely aware of the very goodness of that moment.
And in an effort to keep that moment you heighten your senses, taking it all in . . . sounds, sight, smells, warmth, taste, heart . . . creating a snapshot for yourself, freezing that moment in time.
We spent a few days at my parent's family cabin during spring break and I had quite a few of those moments.
Something about those few days at the cabin was just really good for our family. We left all the distractions behind (quite truly, as we had no cell service) and we came ready to relax, enjoy, and play. Everybody gelled together really really well. We were engaged, considerate, helpful, it was easy to make compromises, and be happy with whatever was happening at that moment. No grumpiness, no tantrums, no back talk. I feel like I am describing a utopia, and it pretty much felt that way!
At one point we were all in the hot tub, the kids were carrying on just being funny and playful with each other. Their personalities are really coming out in these teen and pre-teen stages and it is just so fun! Scott and I sat back and looked at each other with a smile of acknowledgment. Life is good. And so we told them that. Circling his hand in their direction Scott said, "what's going on right here, right now . . this is perfect. If you guys could just keep it up mom and I will be really really happy."
It was perfect. They have always been great friends, but on this trip we saw a new level of friendship start to emerge. Anna wasn't the annoying little sister, Conner gave her lots of attention, and Payton is pretty much happy all the time but he was extra funny & entertaining this week. Conner was also relaxed without all that homework looming over his head. I could see him loosen up, smile, laugh, and be silly. He played the big brother role really well by being accomodating and helpful whenever it was necessary. There was a teensy bit of a tease in him - which was new - and I loved it, because Anna was loving it. I've been waiting for a fun older brother / little sister relationship to develop and I think we saw the beginnings of it here.
So back to those moments frozen in my memory . . . . A list helps to jog my memory too. Here is what I jotted down while at the cabin.
When Conner stood up on the bench by the campfire and sang ALL verses of 99 bottles of milk on the wall, by himself, happy, dancing, and trying to stay on track amid Scott's comments from the peanut gallery (You can't skip verses! No key changes!)
Hanging out in the hot tub every night. The stories, the jokes, the laughter. Watching the kids give each other hot tub hairdos.
Hiking as a family through the beautiful forest. We hiked 2 miles one day. And then about 6 miles the next day. The kids are just so great on the trails it makes it so easy, fun, and enjoyable.
When Conner gave Anna piggyback rides on the trail. Not that she needed to be carried, but she did need attention (=love) from her brother and he happily gave it.
Visiting the park playground and watching the kids just PLAY and push each other on the swings.
They shared a bedroom and it was fun to walk by their door and hear all 3 of them chatting inside.
Playing on the hammock. Every free moment. They played the Titanic game, the shark game, and the rest game. These games never got old and someone was always happy to push.
When we took a little downtime and the kids watched a movie. Loved seeing them all snuggled up on the couch with blankets together. And knowing that they were watching Frozen (Anna's pick) without complaint.
We enjoyed every minute of our 4 nights at the cabin. Loved it.
Something about coming home to real life, laundry, spring break homework, and messy rooms shattered our little utopia a bit . . . . but we'll always have the memories, knowing that it IS possible! haha!