I feel like this weekend was some kind of karmic payback for our awesome Halloween weekend. You know, the one where we awakened Saturday morning to find an entire living room suite on our front lawn? This weekend was not like that. There were some surprises alright, but not the kind that makes for a good slightly shameful morning-after post on Facebook.
Saturday we had a lengthy to-do list that included things like "Charley's class social, harvest pecans from tree on playground, replace busted-ass cell phone with one that has a functioning screen so I don't have a stroke the next time someone sends me a text message I can't read, HAVE DINNER WITH REAL LIVE GROWN UPS."
I think my first mistake was mentally jumping forward in time to 4:30, when the DINNER WITH REAL LIVE GROWN UPS part of the day was to begin.
Even though I was supposed to go to a yoga class, last weekend lulled me into a false sense of security and I decided to join Ryan and the kids at the park for the pecan harvest instead. I also took the camera along because I am on a never-ending quest for the perfect spontaneous family picture. We managed to collect about five pounds of pecans before finally unleashing them to the playground. Hey look, our family takes up the entire swing set!
And then, this seemed like a good idea.
Wes is wearing that hat backwards, incidentally, because he wants to "look like a DJ." Interesting.
If only Mary had been looking, this could have been The One.
After the park (it took us nearly as long to load up in the car as we spent playing, even though I routinely explain to the kids that if my last memory of an outing is a GIANT FIGHT IN THE PARKING LOT, it makes me NOT WANT TO DO THAT ACTIVITY AGAIN) I was supposed to go to the store to buy dinner for the kids and the stuff I needed to make apple crisp to take to our dinner. Spoiler alert, I did not go to the store. I went over to a neighbor's house and talked to her for forty minutes and returned home so late that Ryan and I had to scramble to pack six turkey sandwiches and a bag of pretzels as our "picnic" for Charley's class social.
Even though we left five minutes before the meetup began, and had to pick up Charley and Wes at a friend's house around the corner, we still thought it would be good to squeeze in the Best Buy trip before the playground because it is "on the way" (if you take the LONG way around).
Which would have worked great except one of the kids wet his pants after he became SO PREOCCUPIED with a videogame display that he FORGOT HOW HIS BLADDER WORKS. And it wasn't the kid you're probably thinking of.
So THEN our 10 minute Best Buy trip to pick up my phone turned into a twenty-minute Best Buy trip followed by a ten minute search through the car for ANYTHING remotely appropriate for the kid in question to change into followed by five minutes of waiting for him to change into the dry undies we found in the pool bag (how long has THAT been in there?!) followed by a twenty minute trip to the Target in the same shopping center to buy a pair of pants (uniform long pants that we needed anyway) and a tshirt (it was a BAD accident) followed by another ten minutes of waiting for the kid to put the new clothes on in the car.
So we were an hour late to the playground thing. Which was supposed to last for two hours. And was kind of hot and crowded and stressful. We finally bagged it and headed to Sonic for Happy Hour drinks (not the good kind of happy hour drinks) and went home to bicker the afternoon away.
The next two hours were kind of a blur because Ryan had to spend that entire time calling people to get my new phone set up and the kids were fighty and restless. James refused to nap. Wes and Charley refused to play outside without Ryan. I STILL hadn't made it to the store for dinner or apple crisp ingredients, and the house was a disaster.
Someone was smiling on me because I found a bag of frozen tortellini, a jar of sauce, and a bag of frozen green beans in my house. DINNER IS READY. And THEN I realized I had all the stuff for pumpkin bars. Score, NO GOING TO THE STORE!
Which was good because all I wanted to do by this point was to take a long, LONG nap.
But I still had to actually MAKE the pumpkin bars. And James wanted to "help" so I couldn't just crank up Johnny Cash and open a bottle of wine like I would normally do to power through a less-than-optimal Saturday afternoon.
Around four o'clock, when our departure to DINNER WITH REAL LIVE GROWN UPS was so close I could taste it, I got sick of the kids loudly fighting over the video game (while I made their beds and cooked two batches of pumpkin bars, one for THEIR dessert) and demanded that we all go clean the playroom together.
The playroom was disgusting but this was still a foolish move.
Because now I had basically locked myself in a ten by ten room with the Fighty McBickerson brothers and demanded they do ACTUAL UNPLEASANT WORK. I was slightly jealous of Ryan's ongoing dealings with what I assume was Satan's overseas call center.
Playroom cleanup was going surprisingly well until James deliberately and with zero remorse HIT WES IN THE EYE WITH A DRUMSTICK. My panicked screaming was enough to draw Ryan's attention away from "Jennifer in Mumbai" and he took a screaming James upstairs ("I will make you a sandwich and you can eat it in your bed because you are up for FOR THE NIGHT") while I comforted an even screamier Wes in my lap. He said he couldn't see out of the hit eye. I suggested he sleep on it and see how he felt in the morning because MOM HAS DINNER PLANS (his eye is fine).
I was sweating and wearing yoga pants and a stained tshirt.
Miss N arrived to watch the kids so we could leave.
I double checked Wes's eye, threw on a skirt and sweater, and got the HECK OUT OF THERE.
(James was fast asleep when we left. At four-thiry. He didn't wake up until six the next morning. So that explains everything)
Thirty minutes later I was drinking wine with my feet in a creek behind our friends' house. They made us steak and bacon-wrapped asparagus and roasted potatoes. We sat around a fire pit and TALKED TO EACH OTHER. It was AMAZING. And badly, BADLY needed. To prepare for Sunday. DUN DUN DUN.