Celebrating the Everyday
By Anna Rogers
It’s the moment you’ve been waiting for. Your precious, adorable one-year-old is about to smash the beautifully decorated cake you made into her face, licking the icing between picture-perfect smiles and giggles. You’ll simultaneously soak it all up and capture it on camera.
But she’s feeling shy amidst all the attention. She accidentally knocks the cake onto the floor. You cringe at the ruined moment... or at least, the moment that didn’t go as you expected.
The birthday girl isn’t worried about her dress or her balloons or how cute her face would look covered in crumbs. She is looking to mom and dad, reading their faces to find cues for her own emotions. Will she find disappointment there?
Moments like this – birthdays, holidays, milestones, and vacations – are plagued with anticipation and built-up expectations. We’ve got ideas, dreams, and visions of how things should go. We pour our time and energy into preparing for these moments – baking and buying, packing and planning – but the results don’t always measure up how we hoped.
Too often, we build up a moment more than we should, and we let things that are out of our control dictate our enjoyment. Beyond that, we spend the little moments leading up to the big ones frenzied and anxious, rushing around and missing out.
Are we putting too much pressure on ourselves and our babies? Is the desire for a Pinterest-picture-perfect celebration keeping us from celebrating the beauty of the daily grind? Are we wishing time away, living life from one big celebration to the next, and forgetting to soak up the commonplace miracles?
Celebrating big moments in the lives of our babes is special and important. The trips and the gatherings and the video footage all serve as landmarks and guideposts for our future walks down Memory Lane. Easing up on our expectations for extravagance doesn’t mean we stop celebrating the extraordinary, but that we create some space and intention to celebrate the mundane.
After all, life is made up of all the little moments – the giggling at a silly face, wide-eyes at a colorful new book, sweet hand-holds on the couch, and precious looks of adoration. A full and joyful life means celebrating the everyday, thankful that we get to change the diapers, kiss the boo-boos, and teach the difficult lessons. All of these little moments shape and mold our child and the way we respond and enjoy these moments shapes and molds us.
As we seek to celebrate the everyday and relieve the pressure for big moments, we can implement some practical steps to guide us. If a big celebration is coming up, take some time to jot down your goals for the event, such as feeding your guests and creating a fun, energetic environment. Next, make a list of some things you can simplify or cut out, like elaborate cookies in the shape of animals or a ton of decorations. Stick to your lists when you feel the burden to do too much, shifting your focus from what you feel like you need to do to what you actually need to do.
In contrast, if you’re in between big celebratory events and feel like life has become too routine and draining, start keeping a simple gratitude journal. This doesn’t need to be fancy and can even be a collection of sticky notes that sit on your nightstand or mirror. Write down something that brought you joy that day or record a funny moment that happened at family dinner.
By checking out of a mentality that says we must make a big fuss and go all-out to achieve monumental moments, we’re able to check in to a lifestyle of observance and appreciation. Our eyes aren’t looking ahead to the next big thing, but they’re focused on the joy that sits ever-present before us. We can be more spontaneous and more playful, or we can take a day to relax and be more restful. We’re free to really tune in to the daily needs of our baby, embracing extra kisses and snuggles overreaching the next milestone.
Anna Rogers is a transplant from the Carolinas with a background in marketing and graphic communications. She is a wife and mother who loves to garden, cook, and practice yoga. Anna is passionate about travel, which at its core is really a passion for people, as she believes people and community are what truly bring life and beauty into a place.
Anna Rogers is a transplant from the Carolinas with a background in marketing and graphic communications. She is a wife and a mother who loves to garden, cook, and practice yoga. Anna is passionate about travel, which at its core is really a passion for people. As she believes people and community are what truly bring life and beauty into a place.