Considering we’ve been without Daddy, it’s been a really good week. Angel always struggles when our routine gets disrupted and so she hasn’t been sleeping well. Daddy came home today though and so hopefully life can get back to a little bit of normal.
I cried in the airport when Daddy came through the doors. Not because I was happy to see him (although I was) but because the kiddos screamed “DADDY” and ran to him to give hugs. They were so excited and it brought my heart so much joy. And then Daddy pulled out a stuffed monkey for each of them. The kind that has velcro on the hands and feet and can wrap around and hug. It’ll be a few days before they come down from their happy high.
It was so nice having my mom with us this week. Pat’s mom made sure we knew that she was always available if we needed help with anything too. I love my moms so much and I know I’d be an even bigger basket case if I didn’t have them.
Mom, the kids and I went out for lunch on Wednesday to a semi-fancy restaurant. The kids were so well-behaved, the food was amazing and the wait staff was so friendly, even though we might have looked a little out of place with our casual attire and messy toddlers. After lunch we went to Oh My Cupcakes and enjoyed gourmet cupcakes. Angel dropped hers and my mom was going to buy another one but the cashier (owner?) wouldn’t let mom pay for it. It was nice to have someone understand the wobbly hands of a 3-year-old.
Today before we picked up Daddy we stopped at a grocery store – Sunshine – to pick up some groceries. I dreaded going because the kids were tired and really missing daddy but the store had some amazing sales that ended today. It didn’t start out good as they didn’t have kiddie carts and Caleb fought and fought me not to have to sit in the front of the cart. Finally I told him he could walk but he was so upset it took forever to get him settled down. Don’t judge for giving in, he’s so strong I couldn’t physically get him to sit in the cart, plus I had hurt my back earlier today. I was picking my battles. Anyway, when he finally settled down to be able to walk every time I would stop to put something in the cart he would freak out because we weren’t walking. Oh my word.
I surprisingly kept my patience (barely) even as both of the kids continued to whimper and cry. I tried to bribe them with cheese as that usually works but even that wasn’t making Caleb happy. Just about then a Sunshine worker came over with balloons for the kids. I almost kissed that poor girl I was so thankful for a little distraction. The balloons did the trick for about 42 seconds and then Caleb had to go to the bathroom. The balloon lady had made a mad dash so I found the next worker I could, a nice elderly gentlemen and he helped us find the restroom which was located way in the back of the store’s back room. He said, “We’ll watch your cart for you ma’am.” How sweet.
After our potty break Caleb seemed to be a little happier and wanted to hold on to his balloon. (I had tied them to the cart.) I told him to not let go and he grinned at me. He was hanging on to his balloon just looking at his hands and chuckling like Beavis and Butthead. “Hee hee. Hee hee,” he’d say and I’d warn him to not let go. Well guess what he did.
I wasn’t even going to worry about it and started to walk away when another Sunshine shopper came over and said, “I’ll lift your little girl up and she can reach the balloon.” Well neither Angel or Caleb wanted anything to do with this stranger of a man (good job kids!), but still it was awfully nice of him to offer. We were out of luck, bye bye balloon, hello Caleb breakdown. Just then two workers came over, one with a cart and one with a broom. The broom guy tried pulling it down, with no luck. Then the cart guy climbed onto the wobbly cart and was able to reach the balloon (and just about fell and broke his neck). Just in time for another Sunshine worker to walk around the corner with a ladder.
Seriously, it was like a circus. A really nice, helpful, make this mama’s day circus.
I can’t tell you enough how much I love nice people. Well, obviously, right? But it’s one thing to be nice to people you know, it’s another to be nice to complete strangers with really loud crying babies.
Last week we went out to eat at Pizza Ranch and across from us was a couple. As they got up to leave they said, “Your kids are really well-behaved.” I just about choked on my
chicken salad but said thank you even though the kiddos had been loud and I wanted to ask if they were crazy. But both Pat and I were so encouraged for someone to say that to us.
I think it’s our biggest struggle in life – going out in the public with the kids. I know it’s the most exhausting thing about our life. And when someone takes the time to be kind, encourages us or is helpful it is such a breath of fresh air.
So I’m shopping at Sunshine from now on. And I’m so thankful for all the sunshine makers in my life lately, both family and complete strangers. And I’m going to start looking for more opportunities to bring a little sunshine into someone else’s life.
Therefore, as God’s chosen people, holy and dearly loved, clothe yourselves with compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness and patience. Colossians 3:12