Our first winter back in New England has been COLD! We’ve spent a great deal of time inside, and no one has taken it harder than my three-year-old. Every morning she wakes up and asks if we can go to the beach. When I explain it’s too cold for the beach, she asks if we can go to the playground, and I have to explain the playground is covered in snow. Then she asks if we can make cupcakes. And the answer is always, "not right now."
So today, she was taking a much needed nap and I decided to bake a batch of cupcakes as a special surprise. I pulled out a new Christmas gift from LetGoShop, silicone cupcake liners! I can’t keep the paper liners in stock so, I figured food grade silicone was a great alternative and eco-friendly.*
I made some cake batter and filled the cups 3/4 of the way, and baked them on a baking tray. I peeked in at about 20 minutes...
Clearly, I used too much batter. I felt so discouraged, I was trying to go the extra mile as a mom and the cupcake batter just wasn’t working with me!
Nevertheless, my daughter came down from her nap and was so excited that I had made cupcakes. She didn’t care if they looked as though they had been dropped a few times. Instead, she asked for a pink star cupcake with a sleepy grin. We all devoured the messy treat and my focus shifted from perfection to counting smiles.
The joy of motherhood is built upon looking for the silver lining and embracing the small victories. It’ s too easy to become wrapped up in the mess of dishes and the misbehaving toddlers. But, if I let that be my focus, I’ll miss the smiles, and the giggles, and sorting through my son's rock collections while my baby climbs on me link a jungle gym.
I have to continuously remind myself that amongst the clutter and the Pinterest fails are the victories which make childhood beautiful, and thankfully, that's what children focus on the most. They're not concerned with how organized the kitchen looks, instead, they thrive on the new experiences of banging on the pots and pans or stacking soup cans into towers.
When clean-up time comes, they're equally ready to put their little hands to work for a smile and a "thank you!" It's usually this mom who would rather do it myself than risk more impending messes, but I have to remind myself that, "love is patient." When I'm short on patience, it's really an indicator that I'm short on love. Luckily, God has an unending supply and He's always available to refuel a tired mama!
Have a wonderful week!
Is a wife, mother of four, author of Re:Birth, and lover of afternoon naps.