Gratituesday: All the Seasons

This afternoon, leaving my fifteen year old and almost thirteen year old at home to finish school work, I packed up my eleven year old and eight year old, and we headed over to visit our friend who has a three year old, a two year old, and a newborn.  The hope was that while my boys played with her little ones and I held the baby, our friend could get a few things done, or maybe just put her feet up for a while!

This really was an “everyone wins” situation.  It was great for my boys to play the “big kid” role.  The two and three year olds had fun playing with the big kids.  In between feeding times, their mama cleaned out her freezer, got caught up on phone calls and paper work, and did a variety of other tasks that were on “the list”.  And I think it goes without saying that I loved having a chance to snuggle a newborn for a good long while.  ;)

Back in the day when all my boys were tiny, we had a family friend who would invite me to drop my boys off at her house every so often, just so that I could go to the store (or go home and take a nap) by myself. She insisted that someone had done that for her when her kids were little, and that the way I could repay her was to do the same for others when my kids were older and I had a chance. I’ve never forgotten the blessing that friend was to me during that season.

I could say all kinds of goo-goo stuff about how I miss those days of little bitty ones because truly, some days I do.  There is something so precious about silly two year old lingo, sticky kisses, and the “I do it myself!” phase.  And there is something equally precious about having an eleven year old who can entertain a two year old well enough to produce belly laughs for a good fifteen minutes.  (I should have recorded it.)

Every stage has beauty of its own.  Every season is a blessing.  And no day is perfect – no matter what season you’re in.  I don’t miss everything about having babies and toddlers, nor do I love everything about having independent big kids.  But I relish the memories and I embrace the day to day.  That’s a whole lot better than living with an “if only”, or “I wish”, or the “I can’t wait until” mentality.

Give thanks for today – no matter what season you are in!  And if your season will allow it, go let the mama of little ones take a nap or to do something that doesn’t require wiping a nose or a bottom.  If you are that tired mama of little ones, ask a friend for some help. I promise - everyone wins!  (Spoken by someone who got a wonderful, squishy baby fix today.)  :)

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Comments

  1. Angela says

    What a blessing to have friends that want to help! I bet that mamma was very thankful for your help. Some days it is tough with a 8 year old, 5 year old and 18 month old, but they are such a blessing and I thank God for them. Even though it is tiring I wouldn’t trade it for the world!

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  2. says

    Very beautifullt said, about each stage being wonderful in its way. And what a wonderful gift you gave your friend! That really is the best gift you can give a Mom of littles, isn’t it?

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  3. says

    I love this post, Laura! I am in that exhausting but wonderful stage of young motherhood… my kids are 9, 6, 4, 2, and expecting a new little one in 9 weeks. Many days I feel like I’m in survival mode!

    Thank you for the encouragement, my friend. I wouldn’t trade this season for anything, and learning to embrace the beauty of each day makes all the difference.

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    Laura Reply:

    Yay! So excited to hear you have a new one on the way!

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  4. says

    seasons….we all have them and sometimes after they are gone we wish for them back…. since we wished them away…. being a mama to young ones is sooooo tiring. My post today speaks directly to what you did!!! God is so good and you have a reward waiting in Heaven for you! God Bless

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  5. Mrs K says

    Thank you for this post. It came at just the right moment for me today. I have a 9 month old and I often go between crying because she is growing sooo fast and thinking things like “I can’t wait until xyz”. Really I should focus on enjoying the Now!

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  6. says

    Oh, I miss the days of babies and toddlers! You’re right, all those seasons are to be enjoyed, even if one gets stuck in between seasons. :)

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  7. Birdie says

    Thank you Laura. I know that your friend will always count you as a blessing! Today is one of those “unseasoned” moments for me. This was a good post from you Laura and I am grateful for your “voice” in my day today. :->

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  8. Brooke says

    What a great reminder Laura!
    I know that sometimes I get in the mentality of “if only the kids were little older…”. My girls are 2, 4, and 6 and just last night I was saying to myself and thanks God that I had my oldest was able to sit and read a couple books to our 2 year old while I spent a little time calming down and spending time getting our 4 year old to bed. I am thankful, also, for friends who have helped me when they were especially young and I just needed a nap or help around the house :)

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  9. says

    I can relate, and I have been blessed to be blessed from others in tough seasons in the past and I have been able to be a blessing to others. Just yesterday I made dinner for good friends whose three small children have chickenpox. I can’t even imagine so it was the least I could do.

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  10. Courtney says

    I am in the all littles season in my life and I am definitely one tired mama. I have 3 boys under the age of 4, on top of working part time and going to school part time. Let’s just say life can be very overwhelming at times. You are so blessed to have had some help and now being a blessing to other tired mamas. I am surrounded by family, but I guess everyone is too busy with their own families to be able to help my crew. I just have to pray daily for patience and thank God for helping me survive each day. And try to savor each moment while my littles are still little. :)

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  11. Lyndsay says

    I sometimes feel like my seasons are all blurring together! I have 5 boys, ages 13, 10, 8, 4 and 4 months. So I get every stage and I love it, plus I have the older ones to help with the younger…they do everything from holding a baby so I can get a shower in, to helping buckle seat belts, to even help with laundry and dishes. Which in the end means more snuggle time to enjoy the little boys, and I love sitting and talking with the older ones after little boy bedtime! They are all a blessing, and although there are parts I won’t miss, I know there are far more I will!

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  12. Rita says

    I’m not judging anyone (who am I to do that?!!!) and we’ve all had those days, but just wanted to share: I received an e-mail from a friend one day and listened to the clip that came with it on a particularly difficult day. It was all about this mother who was having a hard time as her one child smeared PB into her other child’s hair. My day wasn’t that hard yet! Then it went on to say that we should be grateful even in this, as our children are at home and safe. What a great outlook! I try to remember that when someone dumps cocoa/sugar/PB/etc. all over the floor/carpet/each other/etc.

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  13. says

    Oh, Laura! What a blessed way to spend your day! It is often in the small things that we find the most fulfillment, and how much more when we serve one another! This June our son and d.i.l. will be welcoming their first-born child, and the blessing for us is that they live with us!! I cannot wait for all the opportunities to be a blessing to my d.i.l. God is so good!

    Today I’m sharing a post about random blessings the Lord has recently poured out upon me. :) Thanks for hosting! Always so wonderful to see all the ways the Lord is working in other women’s lives!

    Blessings! ~Lisa

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  14. Jill says

    Clearly I needed this encouragement! Wow, I literally just finished journaling my daughter and reminiscing about how hard it is to say goodbye to yesterday and how with God’s grace I enjoy and savor now, today. Thank you for the encouraging words.

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  15. Joanne says

    I needed this today also. Mine are 18,19 and 21. We have taken such good care of them and they are wonderful people. It has been a bit hard letting them do their own thing more and more. I miss the old days but I am excited about each as they start their adulthood. :)

    The 19 year old ( the boy) asked me a few weeks ago one day when he was home from college and a bit annoyed at me.

    “Do you have empty nest syndrome?”
    My reply was ” Why yes I do”
    LOL

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  16. Brenda Howard says

    I so love to come home and read your uplifting post each day. You are such a blessing to me, thank you for all you do and all the wonderful products you introduce me to.

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  17. Tiffany says

    That’s so great. My husband just saw the nutrition facts on our coconut oil, apparently 1 serving size (just a few tablespoons) has 83% of our daily saturated fat. He freaked out because he thought saturated fat was bad. I tried explaining that this was coconut fat, and it was good. I calmed him down enough for him to eat, but from now on, I’ll be sure to hide the coconut oil so he doesn’t remember how unhealthy he thought it was.

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