A post inspired by poetry

November 26th, 2014

I don’t blog very much anymore. But I do spend a lot of time with this poem rattling around in my head.

My candle burns at both ends;
It will not last the night;
But ah, my foes, and oh, my friends – 
It gives a lovely light!
~Edna St. Vincent Millay

I’ve written before about seasons in life. At the time, I was adjusting to working part-time from home and to being pregnant with our third child.

Now, I’m a mother of three and I’m back to working in an office, though still at slightly less than full-time. And I’ll be completely honest: this season in our lives involves a lot of mayhem.

My candle has way more than two ends and they are all burning.

We truly do work to avoid over-committing but there are still a lot of moving parts.  Ballet class. Tap class. Children’s choir.  Adult choir.  PTO meetings. Work meetings. City council meetings. Book club.

It’s a lot to manage and sometimes I feel like I’m not doing it well at all.  There are days when I’m exhausted and burnt out and I’m pretty sure I won’t survive one more departure from our house where I stagger out the door still chewing my dinner while peeling children off my legs as they scream – “Mommy! Why do you always have to leave?”

But there’s so much light, too.

Mac with Ducks

I’m flying high because I adore my job and I feel like I’m making a difference and it just feels so good to be back in an office surrounded by people and activity and donuts during staff meeting.

The kids are amazing. Birdie is talking up a storm and no longer walks, but rather goes everywhere at a joyful lurching jog.



Half the time, she’s topless as she charges through the house because she and Buggie like to play “hulk” together and this always involves taking off their shirts. Their gorgeous chubby bellies hang over their pants and they wave wooden spoons around and growl theatrically and laugh until they fall down.

Miss Mouse remains luminous and sensitive and completely herself and I love every second that I spend with her. We went grocery shopping together today and she read the list for me and I was oddly proud of the fact that she quickly figured out my shorthand and knew that “b. powder” meant “baking powder” and “diced tom” was “diced tomatoes.”


I took the big kids swimming at the wellness center on Tuesday after work and Buggie did shark cannonballs (his own invention) while Miss Mouse doggedly thrashed from one end of the pool to the other to prove to me that she didn’t need the help of a flotation device. When we got home, we were met by the smell of chili in the crockpot and Birdie’s shrieks of joy (she was shirtless, of course, and wearing mismatched socks on her hands that reached to her armpits). And Josh cleaned the kitchen and we watched TV after the kids were in bed because we were too tired to think or even move. And it was awesome.

So, I don’t blog all that much. But there are stories I want to share – things I want to be sure I remember twenty years from now – and I write them in my head so if I can find time to get them down, I will!


3 responses to “A post inspired by poetry”

  1. Karol Crosbie says:

    Beautifully felt, beautifully written.

  2. Cindi Frye says:

    Kate, I do hope you can trim back the activities a bit. Perhaps PTO less often, and the city council should be able to do without the Snyders. I actually did not join the choir some years ago for the reason you mentioned. Mom! You can’t be gone another night. Maybe one less dance class? Just so you can take time to breathe and enjoy even more what you do have. As a Mom of 7, I REALLY had to scale things back. I was not working outside the home, but I did homeschool some of them. Regardless of what you choose, it’s so great to hear about your wonderful family!

  3. I echo Karol’s sentiments and am thrilled to hear how happy you are. I’ve missed your blogs but think that it’s probably good for your sanity to have eased up. I have a thought about involvement in children’s activities: clearly while they are little you need to ferry them, but as they get older and activities increase, I think parents should cut themselves some slack on needing to be at every sports event and every child’s activity. The sports and activities should be fun for their participants WITHOUT needing a parental audience. Instead, parents should be able to choose to participate in civil life and fun things like book club so that they can delight in their children when they are home.

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