Tuesday, April 30, 2013

Everyday Treasures

I started taking Natalie to story time at the library a few months ago and her normally wiggly, always-on-the-move self did really well sitting on my lap through a few stories and songs. It had been several weeks since we'd been able to go, so I got us ready to go today only to find out when we got there that last week was the last one before summer activities started. So, we checked out the pet bunny rabbit and played with toys instead!

Sidenote: anyone who has spent time with Natalie in real life knows that she has a bunny lovey that she must have to go to sleep. I affectionately (and I use that term loosely) refer to said lovey as "skanky bunny" because she chews on the ears and they smell disgusting, even after it has been soaked in vinegar and washed. I tell you that to say that she already has a thing for bunnies, but she also is just an animal lover in general. Being raised with Layla, who is the absolute perfect dog a kid could ever want (mommy feels a little differently about her after she has repeatedly done some disgusting, naughty things that I have had to clean up after), has probably nurtured that love and fascination for animals.

So, back to the library story. I was holding Natalie when we walked over to the rabbit's cage and oh.my.goodness. The look of sheer delight and surprise on Natalie's face was PRICELESS. Her jaw hit the floor and then her face lit up with a huge smile and she couldn't wait to get a closer look. I fell in love with her all over again. Nothing can compare to a child's sense of wonder. Not only did seeing that bunny probably make her day, seeing the look on her face made MY day.

Once I'd had enough of the germy toys it was time to go, we washed our hands and headed to the car. Natalie seemed to really be enjoying the warm weather, so I decided to let her explore the children's garden across the parking lot before leaving. I forgot my camera today, but these are pics I took of Natalie at the children's garden when she was 8 months old. I can't believe how much she has grown up in the 8 months since then!

While we were there, Natalie saw a bumblebee among some short little flowers. She sat right down on the sidewalk to watch it for a minute and the moment just struck me. As I had been trying to move her along through the garden, she took time to notice the little details, the new surrounds and new creatures around her. She did not have an agenda. She wasn't concerned about the errand I wanted to run before heading home for lunch. She was living in the moment. She even took a seat in an unlikely spot so that her curiosity in that little bee could be fulfilled. And when she saw the rabbit inside the library, she was filled with such pure joy over a seemingly simple surprise.

How often do I live in the moment? How often do I notice the little things, much less take joy in them? Time passes so incredibly quickly and so much of it is wasted on being in a hurry, being mad, having an agenda, just trying to make it til nap time, cramming as much stuff as I can into a day to accomplish as many things as possible. I strive to be more intentional in my time with Natalie and to soak up who she is while she is little, and then I look at those pictures above and realize that time STILL sneaked up on me and she is most certainly not that little baby anymore. 

Lord, help me to see the treasures You've hidden around me in my everyday life. Help me to not take them for granted. Help me to nurture the appreciation that Natalie has for these treasures so that she will always continue to live in the moment and be intentional with her time and interaction with others. 

Every day is a gift, even when things don't go as we've planned, when nap time is too short, your husband pointed out one of your flaws and hurt your feelings. There is always something new to learn, something that God wants to tell us if we'll listen. His love is never-ending. His mercies are new every morning. He loves me. He loves you.

1 comment:

  1. I love this post, Amanda, beautifully put! I love that she was so excited about the bunny, and hearing about her lovey - too cute!