My house smells sooooooo good this afternoon. There’s a pot of boiling water with cinnamon and ginger simmering away upstairs, and the whole place smells like the best part of autumn.
It’s not as idyllic as it seems. This is a lemonade-from-lemons kinda deal.
See, earlier this morning I decided to break out the fall decorations. I don’t go overboard, but I do have a wreath for my door, a table runner, a wicker cornucopia, and a few little knick-knacks. We just moved into this house two months ago, so I had to find a place for everything for the first time. Smooch was happily playing downstairs in the playroom, and I was trying to decide where to hang my “Give Thanks for the Harvest” painted slate.
I ran upstairs to get out the hammer and a nail, and quickly hung the slate. Then I joined in on the toddler fun downstairs. A little later, we went upstairs together to start fixing lunch. I went into the bathroom, and then I heard a clattering noise. When I came back into the kitchen, I realized my crucial mistake: I’d left the cabinet (where I keep my tool kit) open and un-baby-booby-trapped. On the bottom shelf of that cabinet, I keep my spice jars.
Smooch had managed to dump the entire contents of the ginger and cinnamon jars onto the floor, and was happily patting them to see little clouds of dust puff up.
After removing him to the safety of his crib (where he cried…. I guess he thought he was in trouble) I swept up the mess and secured the cabinet locks. I stared at that dustpan, full of spilled spice, and walked it over to the trash can. And then I realized that there are going to be dozens of messes in my life through the years. Some of them will be so much uglier – or bloodier – or more painful – or more expensive – than this one. As long as I can, I want to hold on to the grins behind the groans. You know? There is a moment when you can choose whether to focus on the mess and the work it creates, or you can focus on the sweet baby who made it – and honestly didn’t know any better.
So, I dumped those spices (and, I admit, some dust and cat hair) into a pan, added some water, and spent the next few hours cuddling my baby and smelling the sweet smell of motherhood’s joys.