02 April 2011

Daffodil Hill

It's time. Just about now last year my preschoolers and I happened upon a lovely discovery while taking a nature walk.


It was so lovely we took the older boys back with us.

And this year, after the morning lessons were nearing complete, I shared my plan.  "How about taking a nature walk, guys?"  They mumbled something incoherent.  So I tried again.  "I was thinking of heading to Daffodil Hill."
Immediate cheers rose out and they could hardly get ready and out the door fast enough.

It didn't disappoint.  We set out on the trail and the six year-old ran ahead to make sure there were indeed daffodils for us to find.  There were, and in abundance.

We meandered around on the hill, exploring, pointing out the different colors, and picking a few to grace our table in remembrance.  In remembrance.

Of what?  Of this moment, just here.  Just this.  Basking in this gift of now and knowing that those bulbs designed by God were created to burst forth now and we might as well go and see.

It's not always been this way for me.  Still isn't.  I easily get overwhelmed with the tasks before me.  I sin in my anger at another.  I choose to "accomplish something" instead of give attention to what's really important.

But it's getting less.  I know it when my eight year-old son says at the dinner table: "Mommy's getting more tame."  I know it when we return from the grocery store and someone's squished all the bread and they've piled all the groceries in such a way I can't even get through and I want to scream.

But the Spirit wins and instead, I hear myself say, "Look, kids, the rain's really coming down now.  I'm so thankful we got all this inside before it started.  Just a few minutes more and..."

It's not me.  It's God.  He is powerful to create us more and more into His image.  

I'm at the swimming pool going ga-ga over a little baby six months old.  He's no-wristed, smiley, content, full of chub from finger to cheek to toe.  Just like my babies were.  He makes such an impression on me I tell my husband about the baby and suggest we try for one more?  

I want to go back.  Hold my boys in all their chub just one more time.  I want to tell that mother not to do anything else but enjoy that little baby.  He'll grow out of his baby fat so soon.

The next day a friend stops by.  Her oldest is heading to college next year, youngest entering high school.
She looks at my children all circled around the table reading books and working on tanagrams.  

A look of nostalgia comes over her face as she says to me, "I remember when my children were just like that."

WHAM!  The words work through me hard.  I don't have a little baby or peace and quiet or many other things I think I want.  But I do have this. Now.  Grace.  Beauty in the present moment.

So I'll stop and dance at Daffodil Hill for as long as my children want to go there with me. A yearly reminder that they're growing up, and that I must boldly enjoy it all.

God's grace always abundant if I dare to see.

photos: a visit to Daffodil Hill, all 2011 except if marked