We took our holiday photos at the Santa Barbara Mission last year, and I know family photos sometimes seem a little too perfect but I can honestly say this day was perfect. NOT the norm for us. We all drove up the coast to Santa Barbara and spent an hour running around the mission grounds laughing and playing in the sunset. Later Mike and I downed cold beers while the girls devoured their dinner in town and we daydreamed about living in Santa Barbara full-time. Fat and happy, they both slept all the way home while we recapped their cuteness from the day. On the hardest days when I’m so tired and frustrated with the kids I want to crawl into a hole, I look at these photos. Like most things in life motherhood is about the highs and lows, just a little bit closer together. It’s watching your child tumble around on the ground laughing, taking your breath away, then realizing she’s been laying in dog poop. It’s seeing these two little girls run towards me with open arms, making me burst with tears of joy, then watching them trip over each other and start screaming with bloody knees. It’s changing hats all day long-mother, wife, waitress, housekeeper, chef, lover, nurturer, disciplinarian, role model, protector, friend, partyer. OK, that last one might just be my thing. “The hardest job you’ll ever love.” I’m not so sure about that and frankly a lot of the really hard stuff is just not in the “Happy Parenting” brochure they hand you at your first born’s baby shower. But as Mike always says, “It is what it is.” And all in all, it’s pretty good. So I guess my motherly advice on the eve of this special weekend is this. Be good to yourself, be good to your kids, have wine handy, and watch out for dog poop. Happy Mother’s Day everyone.
Photos by Michelle Warren