It would appear, however, that I am physically incapable of posting photos and saying nothing about them. This is because the kind of pictures I take are worth much less than a thousand words; I'm guessing they're more in the 10-100 word range, so more often than not I feel the need to help them out with a story or anecdote or bit of triviality.
Today didn't start out in too promising of a fashion. Last night was particularly heinous, Attticus-night-terror-wise, so Derek and I are both operating on very little sleep today. Then this happened:
Now, I know that when a day starts like today did, the best thing to do is hunker down at home if at all possible and wait for the day to pass. Days that start like today tend to continue on the same downward trajectory. I'm pretty sure Newton had something to say about all that but I'm way too tired to be spouting even elementary physics.
The problem was today was supposed to be grocery day. Could we have made it through one more day without a trip to Aldi? Sure. But Adelaide, our most docile (if inexplicably tearful) child- the one who can sleep through all her brother's nighttime screaming and is a generally obedient and loving daughter- has a tendency toward panic attacks if there's anything less than four gallons of milk in the fridge. Our family could start our own chapter of La Leche League. Except, you know, without all the female anatomy.
I knew better than to leave the house. I mean, I may not be Michelle Duggar, but this isn't my first rodeo, and I'm aware what happens when you take a testing toddler and an exhausted preschooler out grocery shopping: mayhem, chaos, and dirty looks from all the people without children who have somehow decided to shop at the exact same time as you.
Still. We were almost out of milk. All work and no milk makes Adelaide a dull girl.
So we sallied forth to no less than four stops. And you know what happened?
A lady at Wal-Mart saw me struggling to separate two carts (what is that about, anyway? It's like trying to separate a crack addict from his needle) while holding Caedmon and trying to keep an eye on Atticus, quickly took her things from the cart, and gave it to me, saying I obviously had my hands full.
While rooting around in my pocket for a quarter at Aldi (if you've never had the pleasure of shopping at Aldi, the carts are all hooked together, and you have to insert a quarter to detach one from the herd), the boys were unintentionally making things difficult by huddling into me, trying to escape the cold wind that was trying to blow us all to Oz. A man who had just walked in the doors of the store turned around, came back out and said, "You go on and take those kids inside- I'd be happy to get a cart for you." I demurred, he insisted, the boys and I trooped inside while he got a cart with his own quarter, and my faith in humanity was restored.
It seemed like every stranger I saw today was incredibly friendly, going out of their way to be helpful, which in turn gave Atticus and I something to talk about: the importance of kindness, selflessness, and helping others. The acts plus the conversation seemed to galvanize him to be extra helpful to me as we shopped, comforting Cade when he pinched his thumb, grabbing items as I went through the list and depositing them in the cart, and being polite to all those nice people we saw.
I guess some days it really does pay to leave the house.