Our lives are hurried and busy. We are often double booked. Figuring out how to get everyone where they need to be is a word problem requiring nothing short of higher mathematics. Our Google Calendar has more dots than fit in each of the boxes. I am not complaining, we’ve chosen most of these things that eat up our time and for the most part they are very good things: work, school, music, sports, church, etc. However, I’ve learned that in order for me to be present in this rushed life of ours, I have to stock my days with quiet moments. In warm weather I am energized by walking, hiking, and running. In the winter I have to dig a little deeper (often within) to find a similar source of strength. This winter I am learning that these moments, which are all warm and slow and quiet, may fill me up even more than my warm weather cardio.
For instance, I am energized when we all snuggle together on Saturday mornings reading and drinking hot drinks. I enjoy nursing a pot of soup all Sunday long. It’s amazing what slow dancing with Chris in our front room can do to lift my mood. I love investing an afternoon in a good book by a hot fire in the fireplace. I find strength in sharing a cup of hot cocoa with my children.
The simple pleasures of watching it snow, stringing beads with my daughter, lighting candles for dinner, or drawing a bubble bath, give me what I need to face a world (that I love, but) that is often moving too quickly to notice, much less savor, the way winter brings us home.
We stock up with extra rejuvenating quiet moments on the weekends and breaks. We're protective of our time at home and or time together. While we are very busy, we've also made cuts. For instance we choose dinner at home over social events at work. We choose middle school band concerts over extra lectures on campus. And sometimes, we choose a nap together over reading an extra chapter of a work text.
On Sunday, my daughter put on my sweatshirt, which fell to her knees and swallowed her arms. She looked up at me laughing and asked if I would take a nap with her. I had a list of things to do (of course), but I knew that right then none of those things were as important as this. So, we snuggled under the heavy quilt and dreamt side by side. Outside the temperature dropped again. When we woke up we noticed how the ice on our porch swing caught and magnified a saturated sunset. The last bright lights of day poured in through the back door. The dogs were lying on the shrinking sunny patch on the rug. Chris and I set to work making dinner. We turned on jazz music and toasted to another warm, winter night at home.
Tomorrow we would go back out into a fast paced world of offices and classrooms, of drama and problems to solve, of places to be, but I took comfort in knowing that we would carry with us both the warmth and promise of home.
Be warm, KFW