Thursday, December 19, 2013

At the end of the day

[I found this post that never got published for whatever reason. It's from 1/22/12, and it's something I want to remember--so even though it's quite dated, here it is]

My favorite time of day is the very end--the very end of the boys' day at least. After I get halfway soaked while giving them a bath then wrangle the two of them into their jammies, the three of us go downstairs and find Ryan, who is usually cleaning up dinner. The four of us each find a stair to sit on. Well, Ryan and I each find a stair. The boys find a stair, then go up a few stairs, then down one, then up a few more, then down two, and so on. I don't think they ever actually stop moving. While the boys wear themselves out, we tell scripture stories. Then we pull them onto our laps for a few minutes so we can pray together. After the prayer, the boys pile on top of Ryan and give him hugs and kisses that look more like tackles and headbutts.

The boys and I then go upstairs, do vitamins and teeth, and make our way into Asher's room. Reed finds a book for Asher and two for himself while I get Asher's plug and blankie and we all cozy up in the big blue chair and read a story. If I start before Reed is ready he'll tell me, "Wait! I'm not situated yet." Then he'll ask me to start over, even if the only thing I've read is the title page. While we read, Asher leans his little head back and actually relaxes for the first time all day. After a book or two, Reed climbs on top of the train table, turns out the light, and goes to his room. When it's just Asher and me, I cuddle my baby and sing to him. And Asher? He actually cuddles back, for the first time all day. After we sing, I lay Asher into his crib then go out into the hallway to turn on the box-fan-turned-noisemaker we accidentally got Asher hooked on during the summer when we couldn't keep the upstairs rooms cool.

I make my way to Reed's room, where he is waiting to read his books. He has usually found a few extras in his room to add to the stack and, as long as they're not too long, we read them all. After our books, he goes potty--I have to remind him every night that we certainly don't want to wet the bed, because he doesn't think he really needs to go. Finally, we say his prayers, turn out the lights, turn on Reed's songs, and look at the glow-in-the-dark stars in his room. And he always, always tells me, "I want to muggiole" (His latest variation of "cuggle," which means "cuddle.") I scoot him over so there is room for me in his twin bed, and lay with him for a few minutes. If I try to go too quickly, he tells me he wants to cuddle for "a lot of whiles."  Sometimes we are just quiet. Sometimes we talk about what we did that day. And I can tell he's ready for bed when he rolls over.

Asher is almost always asleep by the time I leave Reed's room and go downstairs. It's 7:30, and Ryan and I have a few hours to have a conversation or two that isn't interrupted even once.

No matter how hard the day is, the night is always good. And I am always thankful for my boys at the end of the day.

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