Thursday, January 10

Random Moments of Joy

     As usual, Ella and I were in a rush as we drove to preschool this morning! Such is life, right?! 

     Ava gets on the bus at 8:25. In theory I would be dressed, Ella would be dressed, I'd have anything packed that I need to head to Starbucks to write (which I do on some preschool days), or run errands, or be ready for my MOPS meeting. Ella's backpack and anything she needs for school would also be packed and ready to go. We'd be prepared, jump right in the car and easily make the sometimes more than 25 minute drive out to her preschool which is 25 minutes away at our home church. (Sometimes I think we're crazy for making the long drive, but that's another story, and it is our church and we love the people, so we do it...every Tuesday and Thursday.) 

    So, in "theory," we'd be up, moving and ready to go...

    But it's the morning and there are a lot of moving parts, and teeth that need to be brushed and bites of food to be eaten and ponytails to be created (I always think boys must be SO much easier to get ready to get out of the house!) and therefore we never are ready to leave right away and our drive is rushed. 

    This morning, after Ava's bus picked her up, I ran back in the house to grab tissues for my runny nose, my breakfast sandwich (now sitting on the counter for almost 1/2 an hour!), my cold coffee, Ella's bag, threw some foundation and blush on my face and then ran out to the car. 

    The traffic was heavy as usual at 8:40 a.m. and my mind was already preoccupied with the tasks of the day. I was checking them off in my head when Ella said, "Look Mom, two birds at school!" 

     I was momentarily confused. Birds? School? What in heavens name is she talking about? She is my child who likes to make up fake planets with names and creatures that live on them and tell me all about them. That said, sometimes I legitimately have NO IDEA what she is talking about! 

     "Birds? Huh? Oh Birds!" 

    I looked up on the power line out the right hand side of the car where she was sitting and sure enough there were two birds sitting there basking in the sun. The "birds at school". 

    You see, at some point I was in the car with the girls and we all looked up and saw what seemed like a hundred birds nestled closely together on a power line.  Someone, myself or Ava, decided that it was as if they were all sitting at attention in school for their teacher, ready to learn. From that day every time the girls, Ella in particular, see birds sitting on a power line, the pronouncement is made, "LOOK, birds at school." 

    And so on this particular morning Ella's proclamation about the birds thankfully jolted me out of my somewhat anxious, preoccupied mommy brain. Initially it caught me off guard and then I looked up and engaged in her world with her. 

    "Yes babe! Look at that! Those birdies all ready for school this morning." 

    She smiled. I smiled. My mind felt lighter. I felt thankful... For the birds, for the blue skies that I finally noticed when I looked up at them, for the mind of a 3-year old with ample space to stop and notice the birds and for her little voice in my life reminding me to stop and do the same. 

     At that moment I realized this is the beauty of being a mom with small children. These are the things that will so quickly pass. Some day I will not be rushing kids around to preschool in the morning anymore, and the car will be quiet...on some mornings I might appreciate that immensely, but it will be then that I will also immensely miss the random moments of joy brought to me through the noticing eyes of my toddler. 

     This morning I've decided to start calling these little moments, moments that happen EVERY day if we watch for them, RMJ's (Random Moments of Joy) and to be more deliberate about both being present to them and thankful for them. 

     They're things that are a little bit more random and whimsical than what I would have initially considered adding to my "1,000 Gifts" list (I wrote about my starting to keep track of all of the little blessings in my life last Saturday and have enjoyed doing so), but they are exactly the little moments that Voskamp was talking about in her book. I'm realizing that now and I'm grateful for the blessings. 

     I have to tell you about one more quick thing from this morning...We had the new Phil Phillips CD in the car (he's the guitar playing guy who won American Idol last season) and were playing the very over-played song "Home" that is all over the radio stations these days (click on the hyperlink if you have no idea what I'm talking about!). I told Ella how much I liked the song, she asked me to turn it up LOUD. I laughed and did. 

     The song ended and she said, "Mom, could you please play that same song again?"

     "Sure babe."

    The song ended the second time...

    "Mom, that is SUCH a pretty song. Could you play it again?

     Haha. "Of course sweetie!" 

     We rocked out to Phil Phillips LOUDLY, for the last quarter of our journey to school. 

     I was so full of joy by the time I arrived to drop her off...completely unexpected and unanticipated smiles and joy.  I love that! 

     Have you had any RMJ's today?! Leave a comment with one below...I'd love to hear what "little" thing has brought a BIG smile to your face today! 

P.S. Speaking of finding joy in motherhood I am giving away a copy of a wonderful book I'm finishing up. It's called "Desperate: Hope for the Mom Who Needs to Breathe." 

To be entered to win, click here to read my review of the book and simply leave a comment below...or a comment on my Little Writer Momma FB page if that is easier for you! 


  1. I can relate to the should be ready but not ready to hit the door in the morning feeling... even with a one year old...even when just heading out to the grocery store! lol My RMJ this morning was when after I shared my toast with my little girl, she offered up her little snack for me to taste. So sweet in wanting to share!

    1. Abigail- thanks for sharing! It reminds me that not "being ready" is probably more normal that "being ready" in the morning...we will probably all have hundreds of days of both in our mothering journeys!

      Love that about the toast!!! (:

  2. Thinking of Ella's sweet, little voice brings me joy! I meditated today after a workout focusing on ease and peace in every facet of my life and it was wonderful! Then Marky texted me to chat; always joyful :)

    1. Her voice is the epitome of joy (when she is not whining that is!!!)...Miss you guys! Wish you were closer to hear Ella and Ava's silly voices more often!


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