My dad often uses a term that I love: small victories. He started using this when he was in the hospital to treat his diabetes for several months, and couldn't continue his normal lifestyle. He celebrated the accomplishments he made, like tapping into the hospital's private WiFi system on his laptop. When I spoke to him on the phone, he would tell me of these small victories, and I started using the term myself. I've defined any small victory as this: it may not be important to anyone outside my house, but it makes life easier for me.
It is a small victory when I remember to take the sheets off the bed for laundry before I make the bed, or check all the pockets in my jeans before I start the washer. A small victory is when I remember to pack diapers and wipes in the diaper bag, not to mention a change of clothes for both girls. I count it a small victory when I tell Noel to use her "soft voice" instead of raising mine to match hers, or when I manage to get the kiddos and myself dressed and out the door before 11 a.m.
These are all small victories--nothing that changes the history of the world, but they make me smile. This morning, we enjoyed a small victory. We found a food that Noel and I could bake together and have fun: banana bread. She always wants to help me cook, and this was the perfect food. She squashed the bananas with a potato masher while I mixed the other ingredients. The only potential problem came when I was buttering the pan; I turned for a second and Noel emptied her juicebox into the batter. It was about a half-cup, but I thought I would cook it anyway since we were so close.
An hour later, the bread came out of the oven and I tasted it. And kept tasting and loving every morsel. It turned out to be the best banana bread I have ever made, with a hint of sweet apple juice. I ate 4 pieces of the banana bread, and finally forced myself to stop. Noel enjoyed mixing the batter much more than the finished product--she took one bite and that was enough. Even still, this is my small victory. Or rather--our small victory of apple-banana bread. And that is why--it is ours.