Category: Soccer

Monday

Had three minutes of perfection this afternoon: the kids were all playing (mostly outside), the laundry was off the line and folded, the soup was simmering on the stove, and I picked up the front section of today’s paper and read for a few minutes on the back porch. Three minutes. Not bad.
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After supper, the kids styled each others’ hair. I especially enjoyed CJ’s wings, as frothed-up by AppleApple (he, in turn, brushed her hair so that it covered her face), and my heart was touched by Albus fussing with Fooey’s hair: “It looks better when it goes like this,” [fuss, fuss, fuss]. “Don’t worry,” I told Fooey, who said she didn’t like how it scratched her cheeks, “hairdressers always like styling your hair all crazy, and then you can just go home and stick it back behind your ears like usual.” “Okay, I’m home now!”
:::
CJ is just at such a stage. It’s so emphatic. There’s no mistaking it. He has certain postures, this slump of the shoulders he does when his feelings are hurt, which might just turn into a whirling blithering rage as he stamps across the floor, growling and whacking anything in his way. I enforced a time-out today for throwing. In the midst of his tantrums, he likes to grab any object handy and fling it. Let’s see whether we can break him of that. On the potty front, we’re having some luck with new training pants (thank you, kind lenders of new training pants!). He doesn’t like being wet. The disposable pull-ups are worse than useless since they actually hold more than a cloth diaper. But the training pants don’t hold much. “I want to pee on the pot,” he declared all day, usually arriving to tell me this after the fact; but I appreciated the sentiment. I’m feeling no sense of urgency, and continue to feel encouraged by his progress. He’s getting it, just at his own pace. This morning, his friend of the almost-identical-age was over, and the two of them had a blast in the backyard. They both found hockey sticks and soccer balls and set about playing “Hockeyball!” As they called it. “Hockeyball!” I kicked a soccer ball around, too, and every time I hoofed it into the net (which felt pretty awesome, I must say; stress release? that feeling of being a kid again?), CJ’s friend would throw his hands into the air and shout: “Yay! We win!”
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It was a day of full-on mothering and calm. I can only manage these days because I know there’s more going on later in the week (ie. some hours to work and to be alone); but because Monday is a unique day in a week of busyness and a variety, it’s somehow easier to let myself relax and enjoy the calm, quiet, mothering-ness of it, without wishing I were doing something else, or feeling too bored. All I have to do is make supper, hang laundry, and hang out with small children (oh, and a few other chores along the way). So I get to do things like … kick a soccer ball, meet Kevin and co. for a business lunch, walk to the pick up the kids from school, let CJ walk all the home, read the newspaper for three minutes in the sunshine, play guitar to the boys before bed, sing Fooey a lullaby while stroking her cheek and sensing her drift into sleep …
Just another Monday. Praise be.

Today’s To-Do List

1.2.3.

4.

5.Soccer in the park. Baking cookies, granola, and bread. Hamburgers and asparagus for supper. Family night (Bananagrams?).

There’s been an interesting conversation going on about how a blog’s tone develops, especially these mommy-blogs, in which stay-at-home parents reflect on their daily lives; and I’ve noticed this blog has really changed since its inception. More photos. Less text. But also less complaining? Less detail, perhaps. I’ve begun to treat this space more as a scrapbook than a diary. But is it painting a picture of our daily lives that is too idealized? Does it look like we spend our days cavorting in puddles, our fronts dusted in flour, our minds peacefully occupied? Well, that’s ’cause we do.

Or, wait …

Blogland is nothing if not selective. And I like selecting the good stuff. Tantrums? Siblings whacking siblings? Last-minute-supper-prep-madness? Bathtime resistance? “I’m so bored.” Disturbed nights? Late-night glass of wine? Too much coffee? Warts, snot, burping, dirty diapers? Yup, we’ve got ’em, too. But I haven’t started photographing that stuff yet. Maybe I will. Or at least slip in a few views of the darker side of this lifelong adventure, just to balance things out. No promises, however.

Green Things Good To Eat

That previous post was too long. Note to self: no drinking & blogging. Above, our first local food of the season … green onions grown in neighbour Nina’s garden!! Wow. Things this tall and edible are growing in gardens around us right now. I hadn’t realized how starved I was for fresh and green–woke bright and early to fantasize about market morning and to make a list–then sent my hobbling husband with two children. And here this post shall end, perhaps too soon; but it’s soccer in the park. Which means it must be raining. Or just about to.

Last Sit at Wounded Knee

These photos commemorate one of the last days of the splinted knee, which happened to coincide with Kevin’s favourite time of the year, the first round of the hockey playoffs when there’s a game on every night, and our television is tuned to it. First round doesn’t seem to be over yet, but the splint is officially off, the knee officially healed (I keep asking, “Okay, so the bone is completely, totally healed, like it’s not going to break apart if someone bumps into it?” and Kevin keeps saying, “Uh, yah, that’s what the surgeon said.”). In fact, after six weeks of not bending his leg, AT ALL, it’s time to do the opposite and figure out how to get it to bend readily again. (“So, if it’s all healed,” I asked, “why wouldn’t you be playing soccer this summer?” And he replied, “Because I can’t, um, run. At all.” “But you can bend your knee now.” “Well, in theory, I can bend my knee, but it doesn’t bend more than ten degrees right now.”) Right.

The Good and the Trying

The good first, shall we. Kevin’s at soccer tonight, which means he rushes out the door after inhaling the supper I’ve thrown on the table early in order that he can inhale it and rush out the door. Phew. My attitude about this has improved greatly over several seasons, and I’m being honest here (I think) when I say that I don’t begrudge him time to run around a field attempting to boot a ball into a net and occasionally coming home wounded (giant egg on head so far this summer, which turned into the most gorgeous purple black eye, like he was a performer in the Rocky Horror Picture Show). Where was I? Oh yes, my non-begrudging-ness …

Ahem.

The good. After Kevin leaves, I often feel at loose ends. I don’t know why it should be different to be left alone with the kids in the evening as opposed to in the morning, but it is. I feel less capable, less sturdy, less resolved. So tonight I drifted into the living-room, laid baby CJ on the floor (he’s happier rolling around than being held these days), and started playing the piano. I almost never play the piano anymore. When I do, it turns into someone on my lap hammering the keys and demanding Old MacDonald. Completely out the blue, and without the least premeditation, I sat at the bench and started playing the little riff from the Rolling Stones’ song that goes “You can’t always get what you wa-ant …” It’s a bluesy little riff, repetetive, and though I never figured out the exact chording and timing for the next bit–“You just might find, you get what you ne-eed”–it didn’t really matter, I just kept playing it over and over. (Is that even the right line? I’m really not sure where it came from or why it entered my head). The kids seemed lulled by the music, and interested. How did I know that song? What was that song? Get out the drums, I suggested, and a mini-jam-session erupted, dancing and drumming. I played a couple of other old songs, and then caved and played out of a kids’ songbook (A’s request). But it was soooo good. Our evening progressed so much better because of it, I am sure.

Ah, but how’s this for trying: realizing post-snack that their teeth still needed flossing (Kevin’s job, and I don’t know his method, but it sure as heck looks better than mine). Baby CJ was so fussy by this point that he was only happy in his sling, so I took each child in turn on the couch with the floss and CJ fussing and stuck to me and half-blocking the view of the teeth, my fingers occasionally getting chomped; the whole scene struck me as impossibly comical. But still trying. Also trying are AB’s bedtime requests. Despite supper and a snack, she regularly discovers that she is So Hungry as soon as the light goes out. Or better yet, as soon as Mommy or Daddy has made it all the way downstairs. “Mama or Dadda?” she will call coaxingly, then quickly the ‘plaint grows louder. Tonight I couldn’t turn to Kevin and say, “Your turn.” But you know what–cookies and the removal of them from the lunchbox turned out to be an effective motivator.

So here I sit, F just re-deposited in her bed (she’s having a hard time falling asleep this week, due to napping in the stroller on the way to pick the kids up from school), blogging instead of doing the dishes. We had a simple and popular supper tonight: whole wheat rotini, a sauce made from completely local garlic, onion, green pepper, and tomatoes (tomatoes and pepper thanks to a neighbour’s front-yard-garden! oh–and yes, I got permission before picking!), the whole lot mixed together with sliced nitrate-free local hot dogs (Nina). Hmm, does that count as a recipe?

Oh, our onions are off the table. They’ve been replaced by garlic bulbs. But the onions are now hanging rather attractively in my cast-off pantyhose down in our basement. Kevin sorted out that project. We also have a bunch of potatoes stored in paper bags in the cold cellar. Online research leads me to believe we can’t store the potatoes and the onions near each other–but I couldn’t find any answer to the question: how near? Like, in the same cold cellar? Or, side by side in the same cold cellar? If anyone knows, please comment.

The dishes are calling. In voices tiny, but persistent. Hello over there basking in the glow of a computer screen. You will sleep better if you wash us right now. (But will I?). Enter Kevin. He’s home. “Are you blogging?” Uh, yah. And do you want to do the dishes?

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