summer 2010 in the books

Another summer is slipping away. We have watched the corn in the fields around our neighborhood grow taller and taller. It's a fun way for the boys to observe the passage of time.

At the beginning of the summer I committed to live it up this summer. To swim and picnic and enjoy the sunshine without regret when the days became cool. I can say now that I am completely satisfied with our summer adventures. And the joy of such satisfaction is the way that I can welcome Fall with open arms. Because frankly, I'm exhausted. I'm ready for a slower pace and a daily routine. I'm ready for squash soups and college football Saturdays. And I'm ready to leave a week from tomorrow for a week-long vacation with Richard without children. (I take that back, I'm not exactly ready for that.)

Here is a photo recap of our summer days. It's enough pictures to make up for months of non-blogging, but only about 2% of the pictures I took all summer.


My eldest child will enter the world of public education next week.  He is really scared.  It's really cute.  But it makes me really worried.   Today we went shopping for his school supplies.  I was so excited.  You know, "bouquets of sharpened pencils."  But it was a disaster.  Suppose it was an omen for Cameron's first day of kindergarten?  Or worse, his first year of school? I'm really not this type of mother.

Nearly half of the supplies on the list were sold out.  (Bad timing on my part, all other school districts start before ours.) A few items on the list were not described in a way that allowed me to know just exactly what I was looking for.  We did manage to leave with the large bottle of hand sanitizer, a box of Kleenex and two boxes of crayons.  Unfortunately I had to buy all name brand because the generics were all sold out.  School supplies ain't cheap. 

This frustration was all compounded by a tired eight-month old and a hungry three year old  Once again bad timing.  I'm sure I've read a thousand times in PARENTS magazine not to take your kids shopping during lunch/nap time.  Then there was also the five year old with that nervous energy and expensive taste.  Really?  A lunch box for $19.99? And what if Cameron takes a cartoon lunch box to school only to discover cartoon lunch boxes are not cool.  Because, they're not.  Well, that is, unless you are in elementary school.   I have to keep reminding myself to think like a five year old. 

Richard tells me that I wouldn't be disappointed so often if I didn't have such high expectations.  My original plan was to go out, just me and Cameron, and do his school shopping.  I could put his fears to rest over an ice cream cone, just the two of us.  Then I was made aware that we needed to bring school supplies to the classroom open house, tomorrow.  Unfortunately due to lack of inventory Cameron's contribution to classrom supplies will be missing half the required items until next week.  I wasn't about to tackle another store given the circumstances.  If his teacher has a problem with that, I'll consider homeschool. 

Not really. 

feeling low

My brother and I were discussing blogs the other day, and their reputation for being narcissistic and sugar-coating life. Blogs often give the impression "Look at me! Look at how great my life is!" While I can not claim that this post isn't narcisstic (it probably is), I can say for sure that it is honest and real. So I write it while my emotions are fresh and raw.

Today I am having one of those days where it feels like everyone is frustrated with me. It might be that I am just perceiving frustration from some people, but some people have made it clear that they are in fact frustrated.

In the shower I broke down. I allowed myself a few moments to weep in self-pity.

Reading this, I imagine your kind hearts being filled with sympathy for me. Perhaps you can relate because you have felt this way yourself. I appreciate it but I ask this of you. Tuck away your sympathy and save it. Save it for the next time you are frustrated with someone. Imagine them weeping in their shower because they know they have disappointed you, and are therefore frustrated with themself. Then retreive your sympathy, and use it as a catalyst for forgiveness.

Because today it is forgiveness I want.

Miriam's room

Well she is eight months old and her bedroom is finally [nearly] done. I still have some purple ribbon to sew around the crib skirt but that is so intimidating to me I've been procrastinating it. What I love about this room (besides the fact that it is my favorite color) is all the contributions made by family members. My mom made new cushions for the rocking chair. Sisters Brit, Lori and Adri painted the little birds. And sister-in-law Laura made the little pot of flowers. My mother also pieced and hand-quilted the quilt, which is its own piece of art.

eight months

I went to my high school ten year reunion today. I found that I felt much less awkward striking up a conversation with my friends from the past whose blogs or FB status updates I had kept up with. Thanks Blogger and Facebook.

But I also discussed with friends how although we have done much this summer, we have blogged little. I don't feel any remorse about non-blogging. No one should.
But moving on... Miriam is eight months now. She is shaping up to be a content and easy-going little gal. She has been a good sport about the various camping trips and day-cations we have been about. She is all over the place at home, occasionally getting into the toy arrangments the boys have made, causing great frustration on their part. But she is a great source of joy to all of us the majority of the time.
Her most endearing charm these days comes when you so much as brush a blanket against her cheek and her thumb goes immediately into her mouth and her big blue eyes get heavy. It's darling.

it just happens

On Saturday we went to a BBQ for Richard's firm that was at the home of one of the partners.

It was a beautiful home, the type of home that makes someone with three small children squirm. High ceilings, original artwork and a beautiful flared staircase. The slightest squeak from Miriam reverberated off the granite counters and tile floors.

When we arrived most of the children were in the back swimming. It was really hot outside so Richard and I opted to eat in the cool of the mansion. Very bold. But the kids did well and when they were finished I took them into a bathroom to change into their swimsuits.

Located on the wall, where a light-switch would be found in most homes, was a small device containing various buttons for things like lights, fans and probably the ignition to the BWM in the garage. I made my best guess, pushed a button and the lights came on gradually like they do in a movie theater. Wow.

Cameron threw the toilet seat up to relieve himself and just as things began to "flow", the lid slammed back down and he relieved himself all over the tile floor. I panicked. After trying to figure out the best way to clean up without leaving behind any evidence/odor or having to enlist the assistance of the hostess I ended up using one of the beach towells we brought. I shoved it into the bottom of our bag and warned the boys not to retrieve it.

The rest of the afternoon went smoothly but as we drove out the gate at the end of the long driveway I couldn't but help breathing a sigh of relief.