Auntie Leila! And Bridget, and Rosie, and Pippo, too!
Some years ago, I think in early 2010, I stumbled across Like Mother Like Daughter. I don't remember who directed me there, although she deserves my very great thanks. Perhaps it was Jessica? And I don't remember precisely which post I read first. What I do remember is that I spent the next couple of days reading my way through Leila's archives, drinking in her wisdom and encouragement, and getting my butt kicked (nicely!) to go and do homemaking well!
So this morning, knowing that I was about to actually meet this dear woman, I cleaned my bathroom. Reasonably. (Somehow it seemed the thing to do!) And cleaned my kitchen, reasonably. Josiah and Thomas and I did school together, and then we planted flowers to beautify our front entrance. And then, feeling quite gloriously on top of my homemaking and mothering life, we drove down to Carlsbad.
It was fascinating to meet Leila and Rosie and Bridget; I've followed their blog long enough to feel like I know them...but of course in many ways they are complete strangers. Such nice strangers, though! Bridget is quiet and reserved, with a sweet smile and a way with small children.
Rosie is an amazingly composed new mother. Pippo is just one, and her husband just deployed with the military, and yet Rosie exudes a calm happiness that is a pleasure to be around.
(Of course there was much taking of pictures.)
Leila is hospitable and welcoming; she made everyone feel included as we mingled and mixed up and chased after errant children in the middle of conversations.
And of course the other half of the fun was meeting all the other readers - such lovely women! Most of them had multiple children and it was fun to be in such a happy gathering of like-minded people. We're all doing our best to do well for our family.
Before we left, Josiah and Thomas and I took an exploratory detour through the glorious trees
and Thomas climbed a fabulous hill.
Yes, it really was that high. I was surprised that he wanted to tackle it, but he did, and he conquered!
Thank you, Auntie Leila, for organizing the meet-up. It was totally worth the drive.