I love what I call "making days"--the days we stay home more and make stuff: from granola to bread to oatmeal cookies (notice a carb theme here?) or jam. They are relaxing days that feel productive in a better way because I soak in the togetherness of me and my kids and focus on making good things for us to eat and good moments to savor along the way.
Today was one of those kinds of days since Elias has had a crazy high fever and we needed to lay low and conserve our energy. It feels like we haven't had enough of these kinds of days since we moved into The Green Cottage because our friends and fun parks and the library and stores and all sorts of fun activities are so close and after years of feeling a bit isolated in Colfax, it's been hard to say no.
Sydney and I spent a fair amount of time in the backyard today, weeding and watering and bagging our apples (thanks, sis!) so we get to eat more of them than the pests. As with most times I spend in our garden, Annie Dillard's phrase about nature giving us, "unwrapped gifts and free surprises" popped into my head. It's especially true here, since the previous owners planted the apple trees and most of the lettuce we've been eating and the rhubarb that's simmering into jam as I type. This morning felt like pure blessing with my girl chattering away and climbing the tree while I bagged the apples. The sun was shimmering through the trees and it felt like a little bit of perfection. I realized that I ask my sweet little chatterbox to be quiet too often (usually so I can focus and complete a task or hear what someone my own size is telling me) and the seemingly silly little things she tells me will one day be bigger things, if I can show her I am a good listener and that I care about her every story and detail right now. So, I listened. And I learned quite a bit about bees and emergencies and non-emergencies and things that Joey says ... and it was good.
So, cheers to making days and the smell of fresh rhubarb and the expectation of organic apples!