It is spring "break" here in South. Why the quotes? Because it is NO KIND OF BREAK FOR ME. For one, I don't get to go teach my lab. Two, my dad/our nanny is in freaking CABO, and three, there are kids EVERYWHERE. Most notably, at my house, because there is also NO PRESCHOOL.
Let's all imagine how it must feel to be three and have your entire schedule jolted by one hour without warning or explanation and then the next week take away ALL of your comfortable routine. No school, no church Mom Group, no grandpa time. Just you and your pissed off mother, twenty-four hours a day, for FIVE LONG DAYS.
Yesterday was trying. I was unprepared for a long shapeless day and wound up at Ikea after a tantrum and fight-filled morning (me included). We impulse bought a new bathroom rug, some sippy cups that looked like mice, and a collapsable play-tunnel because I was all "What the hell? It's cheaper than therapy!" It turned out to be pure genius, though. The play-tunnel amused them WITHOUT MY INTERVENTION for at least thirty minutes, until Wes tried to climb on top of it then had a mini-stroke when it would not support his weight like he wanted it to. Later, they had a hand flapping, stompy barefoot dance party on the new bathroom rug. Other than that it was pretty stormy. On the bright side I finally made time to email a girl at church to offer her any of my organs she liked in exchange for watching the little darlings during that long preschool-free stretch of time formerly known as summer "vacation." When Ryan came home there were cookies in the oven, no dinner to be found, and we were dancing in the living room to "Free to Be You and Me," which was turned up so loud he had to yell to be heard. My mental health, it is hanging on by a thread.
This morning, having learned my lesson about whiny, bored children yesterday, we headed out to the community center right after Ryan left for work. I ran on the elliptical for a while, then sat at a table and drank coffee while I leisurely perused my new Moosewood cookbook for a good recipe for dinner (I went with the vegetable ragout). Then we went to the basketball gym and the kids ran around chasing basketballs for twenty minutes or so.
Then it was off to the hippy grocery store with my hippy cookbook to buy some ingredients for my hippy meat-free dinner, and then to balance out all that good karma we popped into the Starbucks next door for some non-local drinks in disposable cups. Mmm delicious non-local, tree-hating vanilla latte. On the way home the kids wanted to see "the river" (a large creek running through our town that swells like crazy any time it rains, and it has been raining hard for about twelve hours), so we took the back way home, a windy drive next to the river through the woods. So peaceful and pleasant. A great morning, I thought, yesterday must have been a fluke!
After a lunch of peanut butter, honey, and banana sandwiches, Wes went down for a nap. I started washing yesterday's dinner dishes when Charlie asked me to help him find a brown crayon. I told him I had to finish the dishes first and he LOST IT. Screaming, crying, snot dripping down his chin, throwing crayons, ripping all the cushions off the couch. I tried holding him wrapped up in a quilt, thinking he might just need a little attention, but he kept screaming and kicking me, so I took him to his room and put him to bed. He screamed for another twenty minutes while I sat next to his closed door, but finally quieted down. I checked him later and he was asleep in his chair.
Friday is a LONG way off, friends.