You know, those days when you get up later than you planned and immediately berate yourself for being such a lazy sloth; days when you hurriedly stuff a load into the washing machine and walk away to do other chores, only to discover later that the washing machine, somehow, got unplugged, and the girls' hose and socks you so desperately need won't be dry by afternoon, or even by tomorrow, and it's going to rain, AND you don't have a dryer, because of course, who needs one in sunny Israel?!
Those days when you are swept away by all there is to do, end up doing very little of it, feel guilty about it, snap at your children to leave you alone while you try desperately to get something done, feel even guiltier for snapping at your children, in particular when they so wished to help, and you, as a rule, always encourage and cherish their help so much.
Those days when the weather doesn't permit you even the relief of going outside for a walk, or even to just throw out the garbage or work in the garden, and you end up shut inside all day, crabby, with bored children who bicker constantly and drive you up the wall.
Those days when breakfast was toast and lunch is toast and it seems dinner will either be toast or oatmeal... but wait, it will have to be toast, because you ran out of milk. And yes, you do have that file in your drawer (and your memory), with quick, easy, healthy and frugal recipes for REAL food, but somehow, you don't know where you have misplaced it (in your drawer and in your head).
Well, we were just having one of Those Days when I, as a last measure to dispel the bad mood, turned on the radio and stumbled upon a lovely, upbeat song version of the famous Jewish saying, "while the candle burns, things can still be fixed", usually attributed to Rabbi Nachman from Breslev, but don't take my word for it.
So... like a ray of purest sunshine through a parting in heavy clouds, the realization struck me: the candle of our life is still burning. The candle of this day is still burning. We still have time to make a change.
I cleaned the worst of the kitchen mess, and them took a deep breath, smiled, and declared we'll be making chocolate balls now - a simple but delicious confection of crushed biscuits, melted chocolate, butter and a little cocoa. The interesting part for the children is shaping the balls between their palms. All bickering was instantly forgotten in the fumes of chocolate and the activity of rolling and shaping. Then we had quick dinner, a lovely long bath, and a good story time. The day wasn't a waste after all.
So, there is always hope.
Even on Those Days.