15 minute blog: Love and Mondays

Happy Monday!

Mondays are now the day Shane and I switch off child care–I go to work from 8 to 12, come home, and he goes to work from 12:30 to 4:30, at which point he zooms home so he can watch the kids while I teach two piano lessons. It’s a little tiring, but it’s saving money on full time care and letting us have more time at home with the kids while they run around with curtain rods chasing dragons (how can they always find the curtain rods?) and climb up to the top bunk and throw books on the floor while Shane takes a shower. You know. Either way, it’s quality time with the babies and teamwork with each other.

I have been fostering some Monday “life hacks” to enable me to get to work earlier so I can get a full half day in. For example, I wear the same clothes on Monday as I do on Sunday. Makes it so much easier to just pick them up off the floor on Monday morning. Shane doesn’t have this luxury, since his job is actually at church, but since my Sunday/Monday crowds don’t overlap, this is a major plus for me and I highly recommend it!

So, it’s Monday. Monday of Valentine’s week. After Cyprian’s done with his quiet time, we’ll work on some valentines for his class. And by that, I mean I will realize we have no construction paper and so cut hearts out of the December and January pages of our wall calendar, I will threaten no snack until he writes his name on at least one Valentine, he will get sick of putting stickers on hearts after about five, so then I will proceed to stick stickers randomly on the remaining 16 Valentines in a random fashion so it looks like it was done by a small child.

After I am done with this blog, I will try to address some more Valentines Christmas letters. Yes, I am not quite going to reach my even very modest goal of getting the Christmas letters out by Valentine’s Day!

It’s easy for the failure-monster to take over at this point, but I am trying to choose to laugh at myself and be joyful about it. I mean, how happily surprised are people going to be to get a Christmas letter during Lent? Exactly.

It’s a bit of a splurge to print and mail over 100 letters, but I have realized that this is an exercise of love for me. Yes, there are some letters going to friends we just skyped with, or the kids’ godparents, or our former housemates. But there are also letters going to our the people we rented from in New Haven, to our former churches in Durham, to people from college we haven’t talked to in ages. Each and every person has a different legacy in our lives. For some it’s been years, for some it was a specific summer or a couple of dinners.

This process can be painful for me, especially as I still adjust to a new place. Of all the amazing and beautiful people that have come in and out of Shane’s and my (and now our children’s) lives, only a few of them are on our long Christmas letter list, and yet even of those people, how my heart yearns for just a little more communion! For just another dinner, to learn at their feet a little longer. Oh, if only our kids could play together! It can feel like an exercise in relationships cut short, most of which I can’t maintain from a distance besides the annual Christmas letter and the occasional Instagram comment.

But as it is, I am human, we can only live in one place, and we live in a world of Mondays, busy, curtain-rod-filled, wear-the-same-clothes-again Mondays. And it’s okay. I know my ballpoint pen cursive-print mashup handwriting on your envelope might look sloppy, but I wrote it because I love you. Because you will live on in my life in ways neither of us will consciously remember.

And hey, if you want a Valentine Christmas letter Christmas Valentine, just let me know. 🙂


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