My fingers feel the almost painful cold as I dig through the chest freezer in the garage. I'm careful to try not to start an avalanche of frozen food, carefully jigsaw-stacked to fit as much as we can- roasts and chicken, mixed fruit and frozen pizza wedged in so tightly I can barely move them aside to get to what I'm looking for.
I'm pulling out ground beef to thaw for supper sometime this week, and that's when I see it.
Caramel Delight Girl Scout Cookie Ice Cream.
I gasp and quickly recover the container. I didn't know it was in here, and being that I'm typically the one putting groceries away, it's surprising.
And all at once, my fingers don't feel quite so cold and I smile because I know my husband loves me.
The ice cream told me so.
So, I missed putting up my blessings post last week, which ended up being a good thing because this past week was busy and full of rushing around without time to take many pictures... so unless you like long wordy updates, it's better this way.
"Welcome back!" I call out to the group of snow-covered, rosy cheeked adventurers as they burst through the doors of the lodge.
They're talking all at once, smiling broadly, replaying the excursion with breathless excitement and laughter.
Another successful tour.
And I realize that this is already the last tour of the day- and somehow nine hours have sped by with me barely noticing, the din of constant, steady phone calls and credit card payments and waiver forms keeping me too busy to sit, too busy to notice the dark creeping into the sky.
My husband comes in, smelling like snow and two-stroke exhaust, as I return the goggles to their boxes, the forms to their drawer.
"Come eat with me," he says, and I remember the lunch I packed nearly ten hours before, sitting neglected under my desk in the corner.
|Original Image used with permission- thanks to The Accidental Nomad|
I'm sitting at a barely big enough kitchen table, the toddler determined to get herself into precarious situations climbing on stools and stretching her chubby little legs to hop from one chair to the other, your boys offering up commentary and asking for second helpings.
It feels a lot like my own childhood, crammed into a little kitchen full of noise and laughter and an occasional reminder to chew with mouths closed. Familiar.
And I realize how much I missed this.
Infertility has stolen so much, touched so many places in my soul that I'm still recognizing just how much its affected me.
It has changed the way I do friendship.
My adult friendships often make me feel unimportant, immature, like I can't relate. I love Bible studies with these women and the opportunities we have to connect over the Word of God, but when it comes to talk of potty training or discipline or pregnancy pains, I have nothing to contribute.
I listen and learn and squirrel away the information for a someday I know may never come. I take in the grace and wisdom of their experiences, but I still feel the pain of the not knowing. Of being "other."
"Wouldn't it be nice," he said, looking over the mountain range stretching across the clear blue sky, "if we could get our acreage out here? Like, same set up and buildings, same house, same size, for the same price? And with the same soil, too."
It wasn't the first time I'd heard it.
We're really enjoying this Colorado adventure of ours- interesting jobs, the chance to meet people from all over, the beautiful views- but I do feel a little homesick for our little Iowa acreage.
I love our acreage. The pond, the long pasture grass, worn red barn wood, my yellow kitchen with the original hardwood floors... it's home.
And while I agree that it would be pretty awesome if we could find the same thing out here in Iowa, I can't help but be amused by my husband's way of thinking.
The soil. He'd want the same soil.
You can take the farm boy away from his dirt, but you can't take the dirt out of the mind of the farm boy, I suppose.
And it's just another one of those things that I'm now surprisingly familiar with... the city-girl inside of me shakes her head that I know exactly what he means. Soil is important.
As I write this, I'm looking out the window of our Colorado home, with snow melted away by the unusually warm weather this week, seeing the scrubby tufts of grass and the low lying shrubs in our yard. Nothing like the lush green of back in Iowa-- and it's because of the soil.
It's rocky here- dry, rocky, sandy-colored instead of the dark black richness of back in Iowa.
It makes a difference. There's a reason Iowa farmland produces so much and farms are few here where we are in Colorado. The soil.