Somewhere out there, my week happened.
I know not what we did or where it went, but it is nearly gone, and all that is left are a few photos.
My camera is missing my photographer daughter, Rose,
who is away in Uganda (and loving it very much,by the way).
As the other two older ones are also away from home,
and Joe and Jim spent the week at camp,
just the 4 little ones here holding down the fort with ma and pa, life has been a bit strange.
Going from a household of 11 to 5 or 6
left me wondering what to do with all the time I had on my hands,
so much less the work load of keeping house!
Then I pondered the idea of this being permanent in a short while,
when the older three leave our home to begin their own journey of building a family.
It will happen all too fast, I am sure.
Thankfully, there are a few pictures to remind me of our life this week:
The garden got froze again,
but the spinach, lettuce and peppers are still producing.
The strawberries, too, look quite sad.
Anna's herbs are doing well, although there are tiny little footprints in her garden
near a wee little green spot that used to be lupine.
I am quite fond of hanging out clothes and seeing them flap in the breeze,
knowing they will smell like sweet clover when I gather them in.
Olivia looked so peaceful, I just had to let her be.
Gabe is continually amazing me and making me smile.
This week he noted a large hawk in a nearby tree and proclaimed it was a "Bawg Eagle."
It sounds so cute when he says it that we have had several conversations about Bald Eagles,
just so he can use the words more.
Now if I ask what is the national bird, he has a knowing response all ready.
His 2 year old accent does stupify me sometimes though.
It took me most of a day to figure out "I have a canafwage."
Which, translated, means "I want my camouflage shorts."
This is the "runway" near the lodge, where I take my daily walks.
It is about 2 miles round trip, down the runway, around the pond, and back through the woods.
There is almost always wildlife to be seen, and the time alone gives me opportunity to talk to God.
I often walk in the evening, when Brian is home,
or in the afternoon when the little ones are napping and Joe can look after things.
The combination of the outdoors and the peace and quiet of the woods
make this a highly revitalizing time for me.
With a full household, I rely on that time, which can often be the only time during an entire day that is not spent on others needs.
I think a mother's time is not her own, she has a house, children, and a husband to care for.
Yet, having a bit of margin for balance can be a major life-source for renewal, so that she is fueled up to be the minstering balm of grace to her family that God inteneded.
For a long time I did not understand this, and emptied myself out to the point of utter exhaustion.
Then too, there are others who abuse such time by overemphasizing "me time" in selfish ambition.
As in all things, there must be a godly balance,
and it can be hard to honestly find it and maintain it.
To this end I pray;
"that God would fill my heart with compassion, that I may extend blessings to others,
and make use of my hands as instruments of His love."