Today I had a wonderful day! I've had a lot weighing on my mind and managed to forget nearly all of it for this day. It's a momentous day in our house because I finally reached the age that I'm no longer a princess on July 20, but a queen. I turned 30.
I suppose I should talk about the sobs I woke up with? The gray hairs I counted? My obvious laugh lines? I'll have none of it, because I have had a blast turning thirty. I can only hope that the rest of the decade is half as good! What made my day so delightful? Seth surprised me by taking the day off, bringing me coffee with a side of pancakes in bed, flowers, and a day of pampering (by my standards). The cutie cards the kids made me yesterday were great—I interrupted them while Ella was supposed to be the lookout and instead ended up screaming at me "Happy Birthday to you, Mommy!" Then she told me not to go into the dining room because they were making cards. Whoops.
We went to the park and I enjoyed a fantastic run, met Seth and the kids to go "hiking". Unfortunately, while I was running Eli discovered a yellow jacket nest and was stung three times before he got to Seth. The little trooper was determined to go hiking and on we went. On the way home, we stumbled upon a neighborhood garage sale and I acquired a double toaster (needed for a large family), a pizza stone (w/holder), and almost got a kitchenaid mixer (alas, the ole gal wouldn't budge on her price). I'll have to post about the kid's purchases later. We went to our favorite Mexican restaurant for lunch and were on our way to go canoeing when we pulled into a furniture boutique going out of business. I started talking to the woman who owns the place and she ended up loading my van with free furniture! Two loads of furniture! The second time we pulled back into our driveway all three kids screamed, "Why are we back at home again?!" As if they didn't notice that we had stuff shoved into every crevice. We did finally make it canoeing and had a blast. My partner was determined to help, but her paddling skills were found lacking. I'm ashamed to admit that we did a few unintended circles in the river.
Each time we do something special, I think about how it will be when we have two more children. Can we fit another in the canoe? Will it be years before we can go? I let myself revel in the thought of our children being with us next year on my birthday. I said a prayer for our kids separated from us on this special day, and tried to draw myself back to the little one working so hard to keep us moving.
I needed this day. I needed a break from exhausting myself. As sad as it is, I spend everyday with my family, but feel like my mind has been so far away (sometimes in Ethiopia, sometimes elsewhere). My day has ended with bliss: I've got three dreaming kids, a belly full of "happy birthday" donuts, and a beautiful evening yet to enjoy! Here's a picture of me with my donut (okay, this probably warrants explanation: Seth made a sticky note of things to do today. We completed all on his list, except the last item "kids make mom a cake". Since I'm always the cake baker, this was harder to do than he expected. He managed to keep the flowers, the gifts, the itinerary, and his day off all a secret. He didn't want to blow it with a cake, so he and Eli stopped at the store and bought doughnuts. Still scrumptious and the first time I've ever blown candles out on a donut!)