If kids live so much more in the moment than adults how come H always asks - before we've even finished doing something - when are we going to do it again?
H says that Carole is "very nice," but that his favorite is "him and Joseph. Just the two of us together."
song: When Will I See You Again? • artist: Three Degrees
The breakwater dock is the social hub of Lower Wedgeport.
All evening long cars and trucks drive on and off the dock.
People come down to check their boats. Or just to see who else is around.
One man takes his two papillons out for a drive. We've seen him on the dock every night since we got here.
Another gets out and introduces himself. He turns out to be a relative.
Everyone stops to talk to my cousin Joseph.
Everyone asks C & H if they've caught any fish.
Everyone is friendly.
No one is in a hurry.
No one is talking on their cell phone.
And you thought Maine was "the way life should be."
So I drive us through Boston and to Belfast, and then I drive us to the boarder and on to St John. And I find our hotel room after only circling the block two times due to a closed exit. I get us to the ferry early enough to watch it dock and I have my luggage meticulously packed so at each hotel I only have one bag to bring in with us.
Everything's going swimmingly and then, when we're an hour from our destination, it starts to rain. Hard. It's already windy and I'm having to use both my hands on 10 and 2 to keep my non-high performance mini van on the road and suddenly it's raining like there's no tomorrow and I can't see the road even with the wipers going at the highest possible speed. It isn't letting up and I've slowed down to like 40mph (what's that in kilometers?) and then there's thunder and lightening and it's just so ridiculous and all the while we are listening to The Hobbit on CD and it's the crucial chapter where Bilbo meets Gollum and they go through all the riddles (an egg! a fish! time!) and it's still pouring and then Gollum can't find his precious and he starts screaming and it all seems so cosmically appropriate and finally I pull over cause I just can't see anything and the minute I do my kids come out of their back seat trance and C says,
"Why are we stopped?"
and H says,
"Are we there yet?"
We picked up 80 bottles and cans from the woods behind NFES on the last day of school and did not donate the proceeds from the returnables to the PTO.
Those elementary school kids sure know how to party.
song: Havin' A Party • artist: Southside Johnny & the Asbury Jukes
It's the news you've all been waiting for (now that the Stanley Cup is over) - students of Elena Griffin's belly dancing class will be performing during Arts Alive this Saturday at 4 PM. I will be way in the back hoping I don't trip over my veil so come on down and cheer us on. And don't miss my lovely and talented cousin Lindsey who will be performing a solo!
Now that C has finished his first season of travel soccer one of the other parents asked me if I was going to get a soccer mom bumper sticker for my car.
"I drive a mini van," I said, "it's pretty much assumed I am a soccer mom."
A bumper sticker to that effect would just be redundant.
Like those Priuses going about with Obama campaign stickers on them. Tell me something I don't already know.
That's why I choose the Buy Cape Cod Grown bumper sticker.
That way everyone knows I really would be driving a Prius - if it weren't for all these darn kids.
You would think that over the course of many years I would be an expert or at least passingly adept at both choosing appropriate birthday party gifts for six-year old boys and writing out sympathy cards.
Alas, I have found myself woefully lacking in both departments.
Another day another morning of hard breakfast cereal decisions and of having to convince my children of the improbable.
"Yes. There's butter on your toast. You just can't see it. It melted. Yes. It's really there. Go ahead. Eat it. Eat it."
"How come you didn't eat your watermelon?" C asked H as they emptied out their lunch leftovers into the sink this afternoon.
"Because I didn't have time. I didn't see them." He replied.
What I should have said was, "Dammit, the public school isn't giving you enough time to eat your lunch!"
What I did say was, "Guess I should include a menu in your lunch box so you know what's in it."
So naturally, tomorrow he'll be the only kindergartner with a menu in his lunch box.
song: Your Kiss Is On My List • artist: Hall & Oats
Aunt Betty passed away yesterday.
She and my Uncle Mike raised seven children. I suspect, though my uncle was likely the disciplinarian, most of the raising was done by my aunt. As long as I knew her, Aunt Betty did not have a paying job; her job was raising her seven children. While it may not be the kind of occupation that gets you a shout out in the obituary section of the New York Times, those of us who are now busy raising our one, two, three (or four) children, with the help of DVDs, microwave ovens, and Music Together classes, have at least some idea of the myriad of challenges she faced.
But because one never thinks of what it's like to raise children until one is embroiled in the process themselves, I never thought of that when I visited my aunt and uncle's summer house, which during the work week, was occupied mainly by my aunt and my cousin. Instead, I thought that my Aunt Betty was the best because she made peanut butter and fluff sandwiches with oreo cookies for dessert for Maureen and me and took us down to the town landing so we could go swimming. She helped me pull out my second loose tooth when I was over her house - my first one having been lost on Washburns Island. She let Maureen and I stay up late to watch the Miss American pageant. We would sit on bean bag chairs with pencils and paper and keep our own scores.
On one occasion my parents left me at my aunt and uncle's Lexington house for the afternoon and I promptly threw up in their family room. Aunt Betty didn't bat an eye, she sat me on the couch with a bucket, and brought me coke syrup. Mmmmm. coke syrup.
Aunt Betty was someone who we relied on to be there when we needed her – and she always was. Not only was she there, she always gave the impression that there was nothing else she'd rather be doing than pitching wiffle balls to us or watching some "performance" Maureen and I had cooked up.
It often takes an adult perspective to realize that you had an idyllic childhood and I had one, especially during the summer. My aunt was one of the people who made that possible and for that I am forever indebted.
I hope she had some time to rest back then but if anyone deserves to rest in peace it is my Aunt Betty.
Hey! I just noticed that I can buy Barry Manilow's Mandy from iTunes for $1.29 but Could it Be Magic is only 99¢. Is Mandy really a whole 30¢ better than Could it Be Magic?
I think not.
I mean for starters Could it Be Magic is like six minutes long and Mandy's only three. That's twice as much Manilow Magic for the money.
What the hell. I'll just buy the whole album and skip the alliterations.
song: Could it Be Magic • artist: Barry Manilow
Wednesday night Ken found out the hard way that my new TV-B-Gonereally works.
Because he had the mini van, with my keys, and my key chain, he couldn't help but test it while out for pizza with the boys. You see he didn't realize it's just a universal remote and as such will turn a TV on as well as off. So after testing it out on the hockey game he couldn't very well ask someone to turn the TV back on for fear of being fingered as the culprit who turned it off in the first place.
And that's how curiosity killed the play offs.
According to C, student behavior on the bus is deteriorating faster than a piece of cardboard left out in the rain. There are third graders teaching swear words to kindergartners, people throwing things, rampant use of "inappropriate language, and kids crawling under the seats. A meeting was held with the principal but chaos still reigns.
I feel for the substitute bus driver. Looks like being young, cute, and buff commands little respect in the world of elementary school bus drivers.
Children relate better to gruff, old and crusty.