The less well designed grocery store cart.
Monday, as my wife toiled away on her schoolwork, I took the kids to the hardware and grocery stores. We had disassembled the sink faucet in the downstairs sink because it was dripping, and we needed to get replacement washers and springs. At the hardware store, to my kids’ delight, there were new two seater carts with steering wheels. The old carts didn’t have steering wheels, but they didn’t have belts, and they didn’t have functional wheels either. This led to them being pretty much useless. The new ones were so much more maneuverable, and the kids broke into gales of laughter as the cart drifted towards obstacles necessitating their manic steering which then just sent them toward new obstacles. It was fun to see how they were steering and then make the cart move in that direction. My daughter was convinced she was really driving the cart.
The grocery store also had a cart for steering, but its design was much more awkward. The car part was attached to the front, the kids were much harder to see, and my son could hang his head out the side in a very dangerous way. The hardware store carts sat the kids right up next to my hands, and there was no hanging out of that one.
Regardless of the cart, the kids had a blast during errand time.
Tuesday night was not so very different from other nights. I was tired, and the kids both had long days. We did the dinner thing, and I decided they were clean enough to go to bed without the bath. Something different happened and even happened before dinner. Both kids were huggy and full of laughter. It really made for a much more pleasant evening than we often have. We did have the obligatory fuss as my daughter went about getting ready at her glacial pace, but even that passed by and ended with hugs and giggles. They even went to sleep right when I put them down. Don’t know how it happened, but I do really like it.
Over a two day stretch, I have been able to charge some of my batteries. I was pretty productive at work, I was out both evenings and did not do bed and bath routines with the kids, I slept in until 6:30 one morning because my son did not get up until 7:00, I got to play games with good friends, and I won an award at school. I don’t know the last time, aside from travelling, that I did not do two nights in a row of bedtime routines. I am sleepily recharged.
Wednesday morning was wet. It poured. It hit the windows, and I had to check to see if the kids’ bedroom was turning into an aquatic ecosystem. Of course my son was already awake and my daughter was still asleep, so I gently picked him up and had his company as I started my morning. I headed out for work before my daughter came downstairs, and then had a non-stop day at work. Frazzled by the day and the train ride home, I came into the house to obvious signs of a great day spent between my mom and my daughter. My son was at the Wednesday nanny share, so the two had the day to themselves.
Food was cooking, and there were many clear indications of projects all day long. On a cutting board was a creature made from an orange peel. My mom at work. I could not ask for a better environment in which my daughter could spend the day.
Today, because of tomorrow’s busy schedule, was our unofficial Mother’s Day. I got up with the kids to give my wife a sleep in which lasted until almost 10:30 when I had to go to my daughter’s school to do my job selling stuff during the school fair.
Before that, shortly after my kids were stirring, the school across the street started setting up their fair. Yup, two fairs in one day. My daughter was glued to the window as they inflated two play structures right in front of our house. I got my son down for his nap before the music started blasting, and he continued his nap after I left.
My wife showed up with the kids at the end of my job, and we hung out at the fair for a while. However, the early morning and crowd of people finally wore me out, and I headed home with my son, who was also showing signs of needing some quiet.
Well, that is where our friendly neighborhood school fair really came into play. I got my son in bed, and shortly after someone grabbed the mike to shout about prizes and dropping prices of sale items. The blaring music seemed not to bother my son, but this woman, I think it is the same one each year, cut through his beginning nap and got him fussing.
I think I forget how difficult the afternoon is after the fair ends. Each year, we have had quite a disastrous aafternoon napping experience. One year they even had the speakers pointed right at our house instead of at the crowd. When I asked them to point them elsewhere, they tried to argue that the sound was better bounding off of my house. Needless to say, I insisted that being targeted by a sonic weapon was not the idea of neighborliness.
After we but the kids to bed, my wife and I are heading out to see a play/musical. Hope that is fair recognition of Mother’s Day.
Filed under Fun, partnering
Today’s birthday party for my daughter was testament to the fact that my family is building community with other parents of young children. My quick and probably inaccurate count resulted in forty-three individuals ranging from a few months to the more sage and wise end of the spectrum. This turnout on a rainy day for an indoor party of four year-old and their younger siblings serves as an inoculation against loneliness. We do have a strong group of families, and my daughter was flying high today with so many of her friends in the house to play with her.
One of the fun features of today’s festivities was that my wife and I made the cake, from a box, and the icing, from scratch. It turned out yummy, and it was fun to do together.
We have finished clean up, and tomorrow we host my daughter’s preschool class’ parents for a potluck. Two parties in two days. Luckily this one will be late enough that it will just be adults.
Today was just too fine to stay indoors. With my wife off at an a capella workshop all day, I decided to take the two kids downtown on the Red Line to the Boston Common and the Frog Pond. There is no water in it yet, but later in the summer, we will splash around with the hordes of others. The playground next to the pond is fun if crowded on a day like today. My daughter had fun racing around, climbing up the stairs, and zipping down the twisty slide. She still stays away from the other ways of climbing up the structures, but that will come in time.
After a two hour afternoon nap by my son, we wandered over to a nearby park with a suspension bridge and slide that my daughter has conquered. We never got on it. After some swinging and toddling by my son, we headed toward the bridge, but clear body language told me that we needed a quick return to home before my daughter had an accident. She was fine with this. “We’ll just have to come back another day,” she said. What a calm, peaceful, fun day. This is the best kind–the ones that go at the kids’ pace. I even got dishes done!
Tonight, the kids got a bubble bath. My son was initially skeptical about it and commented with some whines and clear body language. My daughter, however, loved it, and her joy in playing with the bubbles soon eased my son’s discomfort.
There was no pressing reason to break out the bubbles, but there really doesn’t have to be.