I always get the urge to clean after the holidays. Deep clean after decorations come down, for sure--that will happen later. But in the pause between the old year and the new, I like to tidy. I cleaned lots of picky places today. Places like my computer area for instance. It is almost always cluttered--in large part because it is not exclusively my space. I share this computer with everyone except my wife (who has her own computer.) So the area winds up with the detritus of every project or activity that we all bring to it. It is now clean and sparkling. I like to get my bill center ready for the new year and I did that today as well.
I cleaned our pantry . This really needed tidying but there is no heat in there and I had been waiting for a warmer day to do it. Today it got over 50 degrees (what a gift from the goddess!) and I organized it all and swept the floor. Things had been pushed around to accommodate the trays of Christmas cookies that were made and stored there and other holiday things. Some things were stored oddly because Chet has a rather unique way of putting away groceries. He will usually try to follow a system but if he does not know where something goes he stuffs it any old place. Likewise, our spice cabinet needed an overhaul . . . I just putttered through the house, tidying away. The kids helped as well and seemed to like the feeling of peacefully restoring order in our wake.
We took time for our usual shopping and other errands. But with no dance this week, we also were able to redeem a couple of coupons that the littles had earned in the library winter reading program. They each got a free slice of pizza for lunch and were so excited. Lissa also had gotten a coupon for a free cookie from Barnes and Noble because it is her birthday month. She redeemed that and of course, a bit of book shopping took place as well. Actually, KC decided that he would rather buy himself a calendar this time around and to his great delight he found one themed to Diary of a a Wimpy Kid. He is in heaven.
In the course of all the cleaning, KC found some Christmas cards he had made and forgotten about. He brought me one and said he would like to send this to his first mother, Y. I said that was fine. He wanted me to write the message and I did. I suggested that we print some pictures off and we found a bunch of great ones, from the summer through the fall and enclosed those as well. I wrote a small message as well, explaining the shots and inviting her to text or write if she would like to. Lissa also came to me today and said she would like to find her mother as well. I will contact our adoption agency in January. I know that her mom did stop by and pick up pictures that I send there yearly--perhaps they have a contact or can facilitate something.
Interestingly enough one of the pictures that I picked of KC was at the beach this past summer. It is a truly great shot of him, but I was in the background. I had every intention of cropping me out of the picture. But KC did not know that. When I dropped the picture into the scrapbook program, he said, "Oh no, no offense Ooma, but you're in the picture." I explained that I knew and I was cropping myself out and showed him how that worked. He sighed and said, "I hope you don't mind.' I said of course i didn't mind, that I had every intention of doing just that. The pictures were about him, and not about me. He gave me this huge hug.There are no words for how important it is to keep reassuring that this is not just okay, but totally fine. I think kids just naturally assume that they have to choose, or that they will be viewed as disloyal or something. I think without a doubt that KC is securely attached and knows how much he is loved and yet I can see that despite that, he needs repeated assurances that this is really okay. And it is.