Saturday, June 22, 2013

Beautiful Things...or, The Story of the $30 Candle

I love beautiful things. Always have.  Throughout high school and college, I took art classes, and now, although I almost never get to "do" art anymore, I still have an appreciation for it.  And that's what it's there for, isn't it? God has given us so much beauty in our life on Earth, and God uses it to give us a tiny glimpse of our life in Heaven.

Speaking of Heaven and heavenly things...Another beautiful thing I love (and a lot of women love!) is Anthropologie. I get so much inspiration walking through an Anthropologie store. It's like a museum for beautiful things.  I could truly spend hours in there, smelling candles and lotions, trying things on, imagining how this chair or that sofa would look in my living room, getting ideas for how I could display a stack of old books on the shelf in my bedroom, or some flea market pitchers in my kitchen...It's completely relaxing to me, but energizing at the same time, because I always leave buzzing with ideas.  I've told Kemi in the past that if I got a few hours out of the house, I would choose to get a Havana Latte from La Grande Orange and then walk around an Anthropologie store for an hour, alone. 

On one of these highly coveted, hard won trips to Anthropologie a while back, I was doin' my Anthro thing, smelling stuff and touching stuff, and I found a candle that smelled like...heaven.  But like all things in Anthropologie, it was crazy-expensive. A $30 candle.  My husband would have choked.  Do I know how many goats $30 can buy a family in Uganda? Of course. Of course I know these are just things. Just stuff.  And, in my single days, I would have probably deliberated about it for the entire hour I walked around that store, but I might, just might, have brought that beautiful thing that smelled like heaven up to the register and let the girl behind the counter wrap that puppy in tissue paper, bag it up, and send me home with it. And then I would have eaten Ramen for a week straight. Don't look at me like that...just think of how amazing my house would have smelled!

Now, I'm a mom. And being able to afford organic milk for my family is infinitely more important to me than a $30 candle. But there's still the part of me that misses those $30 candle days, you know? The days when you were only responsible for you, and overdrafting your bank account for a $30 candle was not known to anyone but you, the Ramen-eater.

In my single years, I used to spend a lot more time dreaming up ideas for things I wanted to make, outfits to put together, and things I wanted to paint.  In fact, before family life, I did a lot more dreaming. There was so much more time to just...think my thoughts! Ya know? Since motherhood especially, there's just a lot less time for those things.  Between the daily obligations of work, meal planning, grocery shopping, juggling schedules, scheduling childcare, and making time for quality husband-wife time and quality Evie-mommy time there's no time left! My head is just so full of schedules and to do lists that I rarely get to let my mind wander to think about "fun stuff." Do any of you mamas feel this way? I have found more fulfillment in my role as wife and mother than any other job I've ever had.  It brings me more joy than anything else, ever.  And yet, sometimes I feel like a little bit of myself has faded away and I need to get back in touch with that girl.  That girl, after all, is the girl my husband fell in love with. I want the fun, creative, imaginative, Corinna to not die. I want the beauty and joy of being a wife and mother to only add to that.  I have to remember I'm not just the Corinna who remembered to buy the organic whole milk for Evie and the Lactaid milk for Kemi. Who washed all the cloth diapers and got them ready for the week. Who can.not.forget to pick up toilet paper on the way home tomorrow night.  I'm also the girl that used to read books FOR FUN. That used to paint. That used to do her hair everyday and wear cute skirts and buy $30 candles.

So, how to remedy this? I don't know! I'm thinking I need to have a weekly "challenge" to do something that the "old" Corinna used to do...get a coffee by myself, go window shopping, pluck my eyebrows. You know. The luxuries in life.

 What do you guys think? Anyone else struggle with this sometimes?


  1. You hit the nail on the head for me with this post! I'm definitely feeling nostalgic for my free-er days when I didn't have so many responsibilities. It's amazing how you (I) can love your life as a wife and mama so much, but still miss the simpler days. Just knowing I'm not alone in that makes me feel a little better.
    As always, thanks for sharing!

  2. Thanks, Anna Kate! I think I'll start doing a monthly "challenge" for myself and anyone else who wants to join...get a coffee by myself, have lunch with a girlfriend, buy one small thing just for me, read a book for fun, etc.

  3. Yes, yes and yes! Especially being older when we got married and started our family, it's a huge adjustment not to just do/get whatever we want. I think it is so important to keep dreaming, though. I want my babies to know what a joy it is to be their mom, but that in being their mom i not only have dreams for them, but that God has dreams He planted in my heart too. I'm a better mom and wife when I take time to connect to those dreams and passions, even if they are adapted to share with the kids. I am also a better mom and wife when I get a little time to myself to just be. I'm pretty sure I wrote a post all about it a while back, but the attack of the mommy brain is putting up a mental block. All that to really say, you are not alone! :)