This harmless little frog was minding his own business, not bothering anyone.
Buried beneath layers and layers of logs, branches and leaves, it had found quite the spot for its winter’s rest.
He was so settled in, there may as well have been a Do Not Disturb sign on his door.
Settled in and peaceful, he was enjoying quite the rest.
Until they found him.
Then the rest came to a sudden halt. And this poor little frog instantly became a star.
And as quick as I could possibly tell them to leave it alone, not to touch, it was a losing battle.
They had gotten their hands on him, and there was no turning back.
Rake, rake, rake…
See a weed, have to pull it.
Then, another. And another. And so on…
Sometimes it feels like the more we do, the more there is to do.
As more and more sneaky little tasks secretly keep on tacking themselves onto out to do lists, the process seems never-ending.
I have to stop and remind myself though.
I have to remind myself that so much to maintain is also do much to enjoy.
So as we work through our lists, we also look forward to the memories and moments to come.
There is something about early morning flames.
The early morning flames of last night’s fire that just won’t give up.
Despite being untended throughout the entire night, the coals just keep on burning.
They’re almost begging for a little attention.
Just to be stirred around, to let a little oxygen in…
It reminds me of countless childhood trips involving long campfires and early morning embers.
To see the remnants of last night’s fire calling my son first thing this morning warms my heart more than he can even imagine.
Poor little bear took quite the beating.
First he went missing, and then forgotten about.
And then rediscovered!
Only he had been hiding out outside.
In the cold.
In the dirt.
In the burrs.
This makes for quite the mix of emotions for a four year old girl!
So into the wash goes the bear.
And around and around he goes!
As he spins, her little eyes follow around and around.
And then he’s clean!
But wait, now he needs to go in the dryer?
Oh the torment.
Who is this harder for?
Little bear or little lady?
Dinnertime can be a little tricky.
Our little lady is quite particular.
Sometimes the struggle of getting her to eat enough is real.
Our little guy, on the other hand, is a completely different story.
In his case, we have to put limits on the servings, or he may never stop eating!
So when his food is dwindling, after at least a second helping, his eyes begin wandering toward her plate.
This of course, takes some monitoring on our part.
So when it’s down to her last piece of quesadilla, it goes without saying although he’s already three tacos in, he’s eyeing it.
After clear directions from an exhausted mom and dad on who is to eat what and plenty of bickering, that last piece of quesadilla was handed off before we could get another word.
And just as quickly as the handoff took place, the entire quesadilla was shoved in his mouth.
And just like that, the battle was over.
We took our loss and ate in silence for the next minute or so, trying so hard not to let my laughter out.
We have officially made it to Friday!
And not just any Friday.
While we love Fridays in general, this one is just a bit more special.
This Friday is the Friday before Spring Break!
This is most definitely a day to celebrate.
Yet the cheer that normally fills the school seems to be missing.
There is usually an excitement so strong that you can feel it in the halls.
This year the smiles are hidden.
The halls are not bursting with students and festivities.
And there are few travel plans shared.
But more celebrations will come.
More students will return to school.
There will be more cheer.
And there will be more excitement, all in due time.
So for now, we appreciate that we have made it to this Friday before break.
And we look forward to all the excitement the future has for us.
Nobody wants to go to the doctor.
Some avoid going at all costs.
Others go regularly, right on schedule.
We all have our own comfort levels.
Although my daughter’s level is nowhere near comfortable.
I can’t really blame her though.
When you’re little, there seem to be shots every time.
Or uncomfortable checkups…
There is usually some screaming involved.
And some holding down…
So this time I prepared in advance.
This was nothing that a little bribery and preparation couldn’t take care of.
A very nervous little girl….
A little cake…
A cozy, plush seal…
And something new to change into after the dreaded exam.
Put it all together and what do you get?
One successful doctor’s visit!
Students are coming back.
Schedules are changing.
Then changing back.
Then changing again.
State tests coming…
We have a plan in place.
Then we change it.
Back to the drawing board…
Then breath again.
Sometimes we need a little reminder…
What a relief it is to finally be getting a little return to normalcy.
So many kids are back in school.
Movie theaters are reopening.
Children are playing in parks…now that they are all open!
So many businesses have reopened, which means people are getting back to work.
But with that return, also comes the commute.
No more working from home…
Time to get in that car, fill up the the tank and get driving!
This of course, brings the masses back to the streets.
Back to the expressway…
Back to the traffic lights…
Back to traffic.
How surreal it was driving down empty streets.
But alas, traffic is back.
Despite the general contempt that the majority of us have for a congested road, we’ll take it.
We’ll take the good and the bad together, if it means that life is finally getting back to normal.
Whatever that is…
Oh those Monday mornings.
They’re always there, right on time.
They never really miss a beat.
Those mornings, when we’re always running out the door, regardless of what time we get ourselves up and moving.
Yet somehow, despite how prepared we try to be, we are always thrown for a loop.
This morning, of course, did not disappoint.
Everyone had freshly washed school uniforms laid out, ready to go.
As one could likely imagine, uniforms tend to simplify the morning process.
No choices, no arguments, decisions are already made.
Almost out the door on time!
We’re doing so well for a Monday!
Until we realize that it’s out of uniform day.
Of course it is.
Today is that one special day that they get to choose their own outfits.
So we start all over again…