yum.

The weather in Central Illinois has suddenly and dramatically changed.  We’ve gone from a couple of the hottest days of the summer last week, with temperatures above 102 with 95% humidity – to evenings touching down near 50 degrees this week.  We still need rain, even though I’ve enjoyed not mowing for just about 2 months now.  But the weather has provided a nice change in pace in regard to “outdoor times”.
We moved into our new home in mid-April, and it was well into the summer before the new house felt more like our home.  So we are experiencing great weather without the stress of “setting up home” in many ways for the “first time”.  The heavy blanket of summer heat has finally lifted.  It gives us a chance to slow down life, and change pace not only with what we’re doing, but where we are doing it.  I like it.

More than once this past week, we’ve taken our quiet evening moments (okay, some not so quiet, as giggles drift down the street) outside to the porch.  Sipping hot chocolate with our kids, or just enjoying a bit of “Favorite Part of the Day” discussions, it has been beautiful time of slowing our pace.  I blame my wife for this, as my natural tendency would be to continue to “check things off the list” of what needs to be done before we fall asleep.

As we go around the circle, asking “What was your favorite part of today?”, we mentally go through everything the day held.  Yesterday there were an amazing number of great experiences.  It was our oldest daughters’ first day of homeschool.  The day began with new activities/projects, and amazing rainbow waffles my wife worked on late into the night to perfect.  They even had a field trip on the first day of school, and took pictures of Addie’s “favorite things”.  So when we asked the question, we waited, anticipating the moment she would declare “Favorite Part”, and we would know all that effort was not in vain.

Her response?  “Mmmm, hot chocolate!!”

Often we get that kind of response.  Whatever the most immediate source of smiling on the time-line of “today” is, wins the award.  Our children can be great reminders of “living in the moment”.  Usually we see this in regard to not worrying so much about tomorrow, but it also extends into the past.   The pains and the joys from the past day are not worth as much as this moment, sipping hot chocolate on the porch with my family.

May God continue to use our children to remind us to slow down our pace.  May we let go of controlling tomorrow, and being controlled by yesterday, that we might enjoy this moment and be fully present with those we love…

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