Wednesday, August 3, 2011

leaving the mess behind

There is something about summer that lets me embrace taking it easy. And when Kevin and I had to trade cars so mine could be repaired and detailed, my house suddenly turned into a tornado. I took one look at my entry way and kitchen counter and wondered how I had room for all of the stuff in my car.

When the boys excessively took out computer paper for drawing and forgot to put the lid back on, I just ignored it. For I knew that a lid not properly put in it's place was not going to destroy unlike my usual type A self.

As I glanced at the chaos in my house from my car "stuff" and my children's play, I embraced it. I left the growing pile of dishes in the sink and declared it a day to check off one of our summer fun list items.


One, I love the sastifaction of checking off list items. Two, I was more looking forward to saying "good-bye" to a house overwhelmed by mess and "hello" to a warm afternoon of duck feeding at a local lake.


I know some of you have the privilege of real lake adventures, but we have the ocean and I couldn't ask for more. So I'll take the man-made lake and say "thanks."

The boys gleefully sprinted from the car to edge of the grass where the concrete edge meets the glistening water.

Without much coercion, the ducks spotted the brown chuncks of torn bread and rounded up their winged, webbed-feet friends and popped over to catch a quick bite eat.

Much to my boys' dismay, the visit was cut short by the ducks refusal to stay and socialize.

Once the boys accepted the terms of their food only relationship with the ducks, they moved on to fish with thin sticks for poles.

They waited. And waited. And waited.

How do you break the truth to them in moments of pure determination?

No bait=No fish, dudes.

I kept that to myself and watched in anticipation to see what course of action they would take without my interference.

It wasn't a problem for Charlie who was convinced he could just catch one with his hands. And as I watched him, I was conflicted with my extreme germaphobe nature of what was lurking in the water with the blissfulness of observing him in his perfect 5 year old world.

No bait=No problem for Charlie.


I sat on the thick cool grass under the protective shade of a weeping willow and gazed at my boys. I thought about each boy.


One who methodically tore his bread into tiny pieces so he could have more of it and make it last.

One who just threw whole pieces in and jumped and shook his hands out of pure enthusiasm.

And the wild 3 year old who surprised me by his gentleness and patience.


When the bread was gone and the sun had drained the fuel from their boy energy tanks, we came back home to the same mess from earlier, but it felt much lighter.

Fun does that to the soul.

Much love,

p.s. Don't forget to link up and visit It's a God Thing on Saturday and Sunday!


Genn said...

This post made me happy just reading it Katie.
Loved reading your thoughts.
Loved the observations about how differently each of your boys fed the ducks.
I can feel the love. :)

ps- I think I have those same shamu plates in my sink right now!

{cuppakim} said...

I love this. I forget how awesome it was to feed ducks as a kid. I think it might be time to do it again.

And love how you spent time appreciating each of your boys for their uniqueness :)

Anonymous said...

So nice, sounds like a perfect summer day!
And, your pictures and blog in general are really beautiful.

(Try feeding the ducks frozen peas on your next outing. I've been told it's much healthier for them.) ;)

-Jen Robinson

heartland farmhouse said...

Yes...the dishes can wait! They always do! ;)
Love how each tiny tot has there own BIG personality! I'm enjoying learning this with my girlies! :)


Kelly said...

Mess schmess with a house full of boys do they ever go away!? LOL. I say just keep having fun in the sun.

gratefulmama said...

Good for you Katie!! That looked like a great time! Where did you find the lake?

Karrie said...

Embrace = the theme for summer! Way to go! Your boys will thank you!

Jami said...

way to leave the mess behind! woohoo! Can I just tell you the amount of stuff that comes out of my car?! It's ridiculous!

Melissa M. said...

Oh man, I don't even have kids yet but the stuff that piles up while we're both struggling to have energy to load the dishwasher.. it gets SO messy SO quick! Definitely worth it to get outside in the sunshine. I have lots of fun memories feeding ducks when I was little. How cute that your boys have their own unique little personalities! It must be fun to watch them grow.

Heather from said...

Embrace the mess... your pictures look great, Katie. Gosh and how does all of that junk get in the car? Where does it even come from? :)

Sarah B. said...

This post was pure joy to read! Good for you for leaving the mess behind and embracing the summer day :)

Laurie J said...

perspective. great stuff! I love how you describe all your boys as so different....I was beginning to think it was just mine!
<3 happy weekend to you

Elizabeth said...

What a lovely post. Very visual. I am in Michigan and every weekend in the summer we are on one of the 1,000 of lakes. (Jealous you have the ocean) I found your blog from #commenthour fb page and then on maggianotakesaustin.blogspot.c​om - The versatile blogger.

Michelle Elkins AKA Mickey said...

I love when we sometimes just pick up and go and leave the mess behind. I get overwhelmed sometimes by the mess in the house and being outdoors with the kids and watching them makes it all better!

Jessica Johnson said...

100 million percent could have written that first paragraph. i just cleaned out my car. and i remembered why i don't do it more often. and duck feeding is awesome. we have a restaurant on the water that is perfect. grown ups eat. kids feed ducks. everybody wins.

Pamela Stein said...

Hi Katie!!!!!! I LOVED this post and your blog! I always wanted to have a bunch of boys (and yes, I want to be Martha Stewart, too!!! =D) ! Thanks for coming over my blog and can't wait to read more about u!



Alyss said...

You are so right. Getting out and enjoying each other makes the messes feel so unimportant.

Rachael said...

I love this post. So glad you were able to set the cleaning aside! Fun, fun, fun!