We hosted two grade one classes at the farm this morning. It went well and I think the kids really enjoyed themselves. One class was more receptive than the other, but it was nice to see kids (and their chaperoning parents) enjoying some time on the farm and asking good (and sometimes funny) questions. My favorite of the day was a response when I asked what they thought the difference between is between white eggs and brown eggs and one little guy said, "Aren't brown eggs just old white eggs?"
Anyway, one of the moms that was along for the trip was asking about our kids and Thayne's age, etc. and along with the other moms agreed that they "wouldn't be out and about hosting a pile of grade 1 kids with a three kids under three." That, along with a lovely email from a friend a few days ago, got me thinking tonight about the expectations that mom's live with these days, and how we always think we're never doing as much or as good a job as the next one.
Like my friend Jen, for example, who somehow works all winter at a ski hill and then grows a GIANT, beautiful market garden all summer and has a super successful CSA, with two of the cutest little nearly-2yr-old twin boys trundling along behind her.
Or Melanie, the email writer who thinks that I'm doing so much more than her, yet there she is raising a variety of animals to provide her family with food she trusts, baking and cooking her way through some of the healthiest foods known to Canadians. There she is pregnant with her third baby and managing to make it to various playgroups and church every week. And she makes meal plans for a MONTH ahead of time!
Or how about my sister April who spends every spare moment of her busy, full-time teaching life dedicated to creating an incredibly well rounded life for her three kids. How about the close relationship she manages to have with each of them and how her infinite patience and compassion draws out the best in everyone. And how she goes WAY over and above the requirements of her job to share her love of math (ugh!) with kids around the region. She makes my tired days look like a vacation.
Then there's the mom I look up to, Lisa, who has raised four of the smartest, brightest and most of all, nicest kids I know. Her eldest is graduating from UNB this week and will be receiving the Governor General's award, with no debt to her name and best of all, the most grounded head on her shoulders that she has the wisdom to not just jump into what seems like the obvious next step. That sort of confidence is exactly what every mother wants to instill in their children.
My own mother is a legend to legions of people who have ever imagined having four kids under the age of four (due to twins), let alone 8 kids and 10 years. That gives me a headache just typing it and yet every one of us turned out to be strong willed, successful in our own right, confident and most telling, good parents, raising good kids. Let's not even talk about the fact that she did it all with cloth diapers only.
So, if you're a mom, revel in the thought that even on your worst day, you are an inspiration for someone who you probably look up to yourself.
Now, I'm off to wash some old brown eggs for the morning. :)