One of the things I had really looked forward to when Eric and I started a family was creating traditions. I love looking back fondly upon some of my family traditions, from Christmas pajamas opened every year on the 24th of December to my mom's homemade pecan pie every Thanksgiving to eating the same wonderful casserole on most every special occasion. And these days, here in Pittsburgh with two young girls, it's hard to find time or energy to create traditions. Most nights, it's hard not to fall over in exhaustion as soon as the kids are asleep.
But still, when I look back and remember these years, here is one thing I desperately want to remember: making muffins from scratch with my girls. It's an easy recipe, one that my husband and his college roommates made all the time. One that these boys - now men - now all make with their own families from time to time. When I make the muffins, I remember these friends and how our lives intertwine, both then and now, and it makes me smile.
It also makes me smile to watch Emily's excitement at getting to help, at insisting that she can dump in the ingredients by herself. It makes me smile how she asks approximately 28 times if she can lick the spoon yet. It makes me smile to see how she wants to share the experience with her sister, and how she's the first one to suggest that Sophie should get a taste too. It cracks me up that she spends the entire time the muffins are baking "washing" the bowl and measuring cups in the sink. It amazes me that she says, "Guess what mom? The sponge can float. That means it can stay on top of the water." It delights me to watch Sophie take it all in, to know that someday, she too will help us make these same muffins.
Yes, these days are crazy. And hard, so very hard. But these small traditions, like making muffins, are the things I want to remember about these days. And I think I will.