1. Before I had children, I thought that the best thing in the world was sleeping in. Now I know that the best thing in the world is waking up to a giggly voice telling stories to a little sister or brother in the morning.
2. Before I had children, I thought that the best food was served in fine restaurants. Now I know that the best thing to eat is tofu hot-dog roll-ups slathered in ketchup, served with tater tots. ("My favorite food, Mom!")
3. Before I had children, I thought I liked taking my husband out to the movies on a Saturday night. Now I know that what I really like is cuddling with him on the couch, watching a movie from Netflix and knowing that all the children are snug in their beds and I'm not paying for a babysitter!
4. Before I had children, I thought that breakfast was cereal with milk. Now I know that bananas are an absolute human necessity and when they're not around, we all suffer. Oh, and coffee too.
5. Before I had children, farm animals were an interesting curiosity. Now I am fully aware of the noises, habits, and textures of each kind of animal. Especially pigs. And horses.
6. Before I had children, I thought naps were for babies. Now I know that naps are for babies...and toddlers and preschoolers and, most importantly, mommies and daddies.
7. Before I had children, I saw construction zones and sites as a noisy nuisance. Now they are infinite sources of joy and interest. I can identify diggers and rollers and cranes with ease.
8. Before I had children, the arrival of lights and sirens meant that I had to pull over. Now I have to pull over and cheer for the police!
9. Before I had children, holidays were times to delve deep into study and prayer, celebrating in the most spiritual fashion possible. Now I learn new things each year about the holidays as I consider new and different ways to share them with my children and make them relevant and exciting.
10. Before I had children, the camera was taken out for special occasions. Now I know the importance of recording as many "ordinary moments" as possible. I know that each of those ordinary moments is actually a special occasion.
11. Before I had children, grocery shopping was just a part of life. Now it's an important part of each week, devoted to ensuring that the food I buy for my kids is the best for them. And when they come along? It becomes a math lesson, a social justice lesson, a nutrition lesson, a religious lesson, a behavior lesson, and a personal finance lesson. Before I had children, I couldn't imagine filling a grocery cart to the top. Now I sometimes consider a second cart!
12. Before I had children, I liked to keep my car clean and didn't understand how cars could get so dirty. Now that I have children, I know that it's a losing battle against graham cracker crumbs, sweaters, toys, sippy cups, juice boxes, strollers, carseats....and I still don't understand how my car gets so dirty!
13. Before I had children, I thought that children were important, but I never imagined what my life would really be like. Now, I can't imagine my life without them. I can't imagine what I would be like if I didn't have these little people who daily teach me the joys of life and who remind me to see the ordinary as extraordinary. I'm grateful for these lessons, for David, Sam & Yael, who light up my life.
Written as part of MamaBlogga's November Group Writing Project. You too can participate!
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Happy birthday to my wonderful Sam...2 years old today! I can't believe it. Where has the time gone....the days might go slowly but the years zip by!