The Thick of Autumn

The cold air hits me hard in the face. We are in the thick of autumn, in its entire splendor.  I smell coffee (because I always smell coffee, it is my constant companion along with my Lord!) and I’m pleasantly perked up by the chill.  We’re off to somewhere each and every day.  There are many children to prepare and feed and move along to their intended arrival areas.  Mornings fly by with gentle admonishing and kisses and manner reminders, while backpacks are zipped and coats are buttoned.

 Ruby gets her hair brushed for the sixth time only to end up looking exactly as we started; Eli stands at the front storm door, lips pressed against the cold glass, puffing out his cheeks gleefully; Noah clears his plate, puts on his coat, corrects Eli and hugs me.  Bright chilly air mixes with our morning routine and invigorates our stale preparations.  Boots get pulled on and kid breath shows in the front yard as we wait for the bus to come.  I give big hugs and kisses on the top of the head while they chase each other, sneak up on birds and wave to the neighbors who drive past. 

Time is not standing still for us.  It is changing like the children do, growing quickly, moving on.  The wind grows chilly, but I smile, pleased to watch the morning unfold.  The wind blows leaves across the yard mixing with the running children, swirling and tossing.  The bus brakes squeal at the top of the street, signaling a change to our activity, and the kids swoop back toward me for their backpacks.  They line up at the foot of my driveway, poking each other as they smile and wave me away.  After a quick chat with the bus driver, they are climbing up the steps of the bus, and driving off toward their school. 

Eli sings to himself, waving goodbye to his brother and sister while running in circles, unaware of the chill and the wind and the time blowing by.  I sip my coffee as they drive off, content to not be thinking and planning and calculating for the moment.  My devotion today contained Psalm 103:15-18 “As for man, his days are like grass, he flourishes like a flower of the field; the wind blows over it and it is gone, and its place remembers it no more, But from everlasting to everlasting the Lord’s love is with those who fear him, and his righteousness with their children’s children- with those who keep His covenant and remember to obey His precepts.”

I held Eli’s hand and walked him to the car, buckling him in for the ride to Pre-K.  He grabs his Dad’s pocket bible from the seat beside him, and hides it next to his leg in the car seat.  “You don’t have to hide that, little man,” I say to him, “you are allowed to read Dad’s bible.  See if you can read any of the words.”  He pages through the words, as I tell him about the words in red at the back of the book and he says, “Jesus”.  We drive to school and I teach him the words of the Lord’s prayer, the way Jesus told us how to pray.  It is just another day, but one that I carve out of my memory that I have done right.

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