Monday, November 19, 2012

Fall Fails.

This fall, there wasn't enough time to rake leaves or visit an apple orchard.

With Dan's schedule and workload, we just had to pick up pumpkins from Groppis.

Ingrid's inconsistent nap schedule meant that we couldn't make the hike to the apple orchard and settled on a local fall festival.

At the time, I was disappointed. Disappointed that we missed out of my favorite events of the best season. Now, as I reflect on these Fall Fails - I can't muster up the energy be disappointed - and that is a really liberating feeling.

Because normally, I'm a hot mess when it comes to self-imposed obligations. Instead, we had impromptu family-photo sessions in the front yard, carved pumpkins and made caramel apples.

Sure, it was great photo-taking-caramel-apple-making weather but, more importantly, it was what everyone wanted to do. Everyone had fun and it wasn't forced.

These photos are evidence that energy levels were running low last month:

Who's creepier?
A dad holding a knife while wearing a beanie hat?
Or, a shirtless toddler who will not touch pumpkin guts and therefore does not need to be shirtless. 

Dad: Eyes closed.
Ingrid: Eyes open while holding a marker and eating raisins (hopefully). 

Dad: Eyes open. Ingrid: Eyes closed.
I give up. 

Maybe this sounds weird, but earlier this fall, the realities of parenthood really started to sink in. Dan went back to school and our schedules became structured. Chores and meals had to be planned. And a little stress-snowball gained momentum as it rolled downhill and left me feeling squashed.

At the time, these so-called Fall Fails felt like a reflection of my current parenting state. How well was I doing if I couldn't manage to hop in the car for 30 minutes and get pumpkins?

Reality? Ingrid and I were alone for most weekends while Dan worked. After grocery shopping, laundry, cooking and cleaning - I felt like a champion for going to Movement Class on time.

I can't change nap times, work schedules, energy levels. We'll always need groceries, walks with Harper and clean laundry. Put the two together and that means sometimes we can't do what we had planned.

As I look ahead to the holidays with great anticipation and excitement - I reminded that I won't be do everything on my wish list. I won't be able to knit as much as I would like (to finish the pair of mittens I started in 2010) or visit every "_______ with Santa" event. Hopefully we'll go to church, see Christmas lights and have brunch with Santa - anything more would be icing on the already delicious cake. 

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