Monday, August 30, 2010


"Flush. the. toilet." I shout. "JACK, you have to FLUSH the toilet when you poop."

Craig pokes his head in the bathroom, raises both eyebrows. "I've told him like five times today," I say. "JACK," I call again.

"Ok, Momma," he says.

"There you are. Did you hear me?"


"You HAVE to flush the toilet."

"Ok." He nods serious like, furrows his brow, "Ok."

He makes us notes, that Jack. He cuts up papers, small, like my hands, and scribbles out rocks, people, letters. "Here, Momma," a note. "I'm giving this one to Daddy," he says, "because he can fight the best and this one to you because you normally write words." I smile at mine, zigzag edges. He smiles at me.

Later he sits on the couch, "I wonder why Daddy's so amazing," he says and wrinkles up his brow. He lets the thought turn a few revolutions then slaps his knee, "I wonder why Daddy's so amazing."

I shake my head, "Me too." The boy squints those eyes, and I see it: little boy replays a Daddy-moment there in his mind, memorizes him. He plays it over and again. It lasts forever there on repeat. Those blue eyes give him away. He studies amazing until it starts to rub off.

"Yup, pretty amazing," I say. The boy shakes his head and drums off to brush teeth. I wonder how he has time at all to remember to flush.


151. Salty peanutbutter pretzels.

152. Mason canning jars.

153. Genius friend who helps me organize my kitchen. For fun. (!)

154. Sister-in-law who laughs when we find red wine vinegar in six different cabinets.

155. Fresh garden cucumbers.

156. New vacuum, orange and gray.

157. Three pies in one week. One blackberry, two peach.

158. Husband gone and back safe from work trip.

159. Gallons of fresh clean water any time I want.

160. Dad able to breathe well enough to run again.

161. A big ol' garage sale to raise money for Spring of Hope.

162. The house tidy. For a moment.

holy     experience


Pig Woman said...

I still find those notes from my kids now and again--like a few days ago tucked into a cookbook I haven't used in years. Its like finding a little treasure from a simpler time.

Love you Bethany. So glad you can come for Thanksgiving!

Cheri said...

Blessed by your list. I love notes from my four year old...and I also REALLY relate to the extra bottles of red wine vinegar!

Goat said...

I'm thinking of that ooooold song by Crosby Stills Nash and Young about teaching your children well. We teach them, they teach us or at least remind us of how amazing life is. I love the way you are teaching Jack to be a man. You teach your children well.

keLi said...

isn't it so "amazing" (to steal Jack's word) to get to watch them, the boy tracing masculinity in daddy shadow?

it's a motherhood gift that i never anticipated, and it's so good. so good.

also, your friend who loves kitchen organizing? can i send her my address? ;)

Misty said...

oh a tidy and orgnaized house, if even for a moment--lovely. and the pies and pretzles and mason jar love and husband awe in little boy head... i love your list today!

Daniel and Cerissa said...

Love that boy!
I'm still laughing over the vinegar... although the medicine syringes in the coffee mugs were the best entertainment! Can't wait to see your pantry!!!

Rachel Clark said...

Beautiful list. Very vivid post.

Ostriches Look Funny said...

This is adorable!!!
May I just say though, that boys and bathrooms are enough to make you lose your sanctification. I'm holding on to mine today despite the fact that certain people "forgot" they were going pee pee and subsequently unleashed a flood on the floor.

Kim Hyland said...

Very sweet. And thought provoking. I want to see my boys' "shortcomings" in this light. Thanks.

Heather said...

Don't those sweet little conversations make all the forgetting toilet-flushing worth it?

Bon said...

Oh I loved this one! We had the most disgusting toilet-not-flushed/baby-in-the-bathroom episode the other day. I still shudder whenever I think of it. This made me laugh because I'm pretty sure "Did you remember to flush?" is my mantra...

Love to read everything you write Bethany, you are such a blessing and inspiration to my mothering.

emily wierenga said...

i teared up when your boy talked about his daddy being so amazing... oh, to see the world in the light of amazing...

Natalie said...

Oh, how perfectly sweet! You capture the essence and beauty of your everday moments so beautifully! Keep using your gift, sister :)

Dana said...

I love your blog. It makes me happy. Also, seeing your thankful #160 makes me especially thankful. Thank you.