Our Sweet Spot

I have such a treat for you all today.  Mary Lauren of My 3 Little Birds is here today as my latest Sluiter Nation Recruit.

I am usually a quiet stalker on Mary Lauren’s blog, and I frequently enjoy her posts at Babble’s Toddler Times. In fact, I was a little intimidated asking her to post here, but she was so gracious and lovely and well…you are going to love her.


In my earliest memory, I was four years old. It’s more flash than narrative, more a feeling than a storyline, more a dream fragment than substantive recollection. Nevertheless, it’s a peek inside my childhood mind, and one I’m grateful I remember.

It was this time of year— early fall. We lived in a red house on a dead-end street and at four, I was still an only child. I opened the heavy storm door and stepped onto the front porch. There was a faint hint of smoke in the air— a neighbor burning trash, perhaps, on the other side of the hill. As I held onto the wrought-iron banister I said aloud to no one but the trees: I wish I were nine.

At the tender age of four, I was already willing time to speed up. I was willing to give the universe a sacrifice of 5 years, a burnt offering of childhood and why? So that I wouldn’t have to hold onto that banister to make it down the front steps.

At 35 I still will time. I move it forward, just like I did at 4 years old.

Could this day BE any longer?

Is it Friday yet?

Sometimes in my dreams I go backwards too. I think of being single and able to spend half a paycheck at the mall and didn’t have to buy jeans that hid the imperfections of middle age. I think of my blissful first year of marriage in the little first floor apartment where I learned to make meatballs his grandmother’s way (cooked IN the sauce- never baked).

But lately more than anything, I find myself pausing time. I want to freeze it like a movie frame, right before the hero kisses the girl, or on the brink of unlocking a mystery that sends the movie toward its victorious conclusion.

Right here. When she’s three. He’s five. And he’s nine.

Right now, in the house with the cramped second floor we’ll be leaving soon.

Here, in this moment, with its ups and downs, with its pillow fights and temper tantrums and fourth grade homework that makes me crazy.

Right here. This is our sweet spot in life, the dream fragment we’ll look back on one day and say, That. That’s the movie frame image I want to play again and again and again, till the lights in the theatre go out.

About Katie

Just a small town girl...wait no. That is a Journey song. Katie Sluiter is a small town girl, but she is far from living in a lonely world. She is a middle school English teacher, writer, mother, and wife. Life has thrown her a fair share of challenges, but her belief is that writing through them makes her stronger.


  1. Katie, thank you so much for having me. I’m honored to be your newest recruit!

  2. Oh, I love this (as I always seem to love ML’s words)! I hope for you (and for all of us, really) that your life is full of sweet spots, that there are many more phases you recognize and appreciate and want to pause and relive over and over again.

  3. I LOVE this post–it is so wonderful and tears spring to my eyes as I read it. I have similar thoughts practically daily as I watch my 18-month-old son grow and change. I know that when he’s 13 and cranky or 18 and graduating or 30 and marrying, I will look back on these moments when he is so happy to point out star shapes and runs into my arms full-tilt and feel such an intense longing for them. I know that every stage has its perks, but THESE are the moments, and I am fully aware of that. Motherhood is so about learning to fully live in the moment and appreciate what you have, because in a blink, these babies will be grown.


  1. […] the idea of freezing time to appreciate the moment we’re in. I hope you’ll visit me at Sluiter Nation to read it. Katie has already laid out the welcome mat for you over at her place : […]