You spent the afternoon enjoying the sunshine.
As I scrubbed the kitchen floor, your actions drew my gaze outside, and I froze, taking note of every detail.
You were dressed in a grubby ensemble--
Talmage, you were wearing sandals with jeans which sported a large hole in the knee and somewhere along the way the seat of your pants had gotten covered with mud.
Wesley, you were wearing a short-sleeved polo that was too small for you and cowboy boots several sizes too big--on the wrong feet, no less!
Lincoln, we had traded your snow-soaked jeans for athletic shorts earlier in the day and your face was covered in a mixture of slime from your nose, drool, and mud from all the dirt you ate.
To the outside observer, that disheveled threesome scampering around amidst the toys strewn around the backyard would look anything but picturesque.
But I couldn't seem to tear my gaze away from you all.
My to-do list was left largely untouched as I sat there on the kitchen floor,
wet washcloth in hand,
and stared transfixed.
Talmage, you were digging furiously with a plastic shovel in the patch of dirt to fill up a bucket with cold, late-winter mud.
Wesley, you were utilizing a toy front-loader, filling it with leaves and dirt and likewise filling a bucket.
Lincoln, you traipsed merrily around, oblivious to the cold despite your shorts, at times kicking a bucket, other times helping your brothers with their tasks, and once even laughingly hitting Wesley with a spatula you smuggled outside from the kitchen.
And I was struck by the way the moments were so fleeting, so fragile.
Each moment, so filled with emotion, passing as quickly as it came, leaving only a memory
and a life shaped and changed.
My own emotions were near the surface as I gazed upon my happy little trio.
Perhaps it was because I had been touched all day by the Women's Conference I attended this morning.
Perhaps it was because my "baby" is quickly losing all trace of the word as he glides quickly toward age 2.
Perhaps it was simply the joy I felt as I watched you play together in harmony.
But whatever it was, I yearned to freeze time for a moment, to soak in and savor a single instant in time.
And as I was overcome by this yearning, my gaze fully unnoticed by you all,
I tuned in to the words of the song playing in the background:
Every breath is measured by the Captain of my Soul
Every moment fragile
Too brief for me to hold...
Every second measured by the Keeper of my Heart
Every season passes as it fades into the dark..."
My little ones, thank you.
Thank you for helping me to enjoy the beauty of the moment more fully.
Thank you for showing me how quickly time passes
and teaching me every single day to enjoy the little moments.
Because it is these little moments,
these instances largely inconsequential,
that ultimately determine our destiny
and comprise our eternity.
With all my love,