I don't know how many times we have been informed, "It all goes so fast..enjoy it". For us, I think we receive those comments primarily as we are trying to herd our brood through some sort of retail line or simply attempting to shuffle everyone through a parking lot without any catastrophes. I am fairly sure that we attract these comments at those particular times because our eyes are darting in five directions at once, we are having three conversations, and usually carrying much more than your average luggage cart. Thus, it appears that we aren't enjoying ourselves.
Well, often we aren't! Don't get me wrong, it can be fun, sometimes, to all go out places. But there are times, despite the best preparations, that Ryan and I can leave what was to be a delightful excursion wishing only for a hot tub on a quiet island.
One such time was cherry picking. Cherry picking sounds like fun, doesn't it? We thought so! Understand, we are nearly pros at the 'pick-your-own-fruit' thing, or at least we thought we were. We pick about two hundred pounds of apples a year and often a third of that amount in plums, and sometimes some berries. But we had never harvested cherries. We did our research, I knew how I was going to store the fruit, had a jam recipe ready in the kitchen, etc.
Well, in case you weren't aware, cherries are A LOT smaller than apples, or even plums. However, we never contemplated this obvious fact. So, I happily told the farmer we would take him up on his "pick 7 pails, receive the 8th free" deal.
As we walked out of the grocery store yesterday with our two carts (the extra for the purpose of carrying our littlest ones) Z and I parked them near the trunk and I began placing and buckling the younger children into their appropriate car seats. I turned around to unload the groceries and put the carts back only to see a gleaming smile on Z's face as he asked if he could take the carts back. He had placed all of the groceries into the trunk, including the milk, very neatly. I astoundedly said, "Wow, of course!".
This may seem small, but it was a very happy moment to realize that at least one of them is getting old enough to not just want to help with everyday things, but able to recognize a need and take care of it!
Yeah!!! There is a light at the end of tunnel. By the way, we have all enjoyed the jam, crisps, and syrup from our more than 100 CUPS of cherries.