My kids are in love with Eric Traplin. We have one CD called Bubbles and it’s pretty much on every time the kids think to push “play” on the CD player. (And they put the CD back in if I’ve removed it for something I’d prefer to listen to–piano music or the Curious George soundtrack). It’s pretty standard kids’ music, always on at high volume, guitar, drums, piano, cheery upbeat simple tunes. Everyone’s favourite is called “My Superhero,” and it tells the story of a vaguely drawn superhero who has goodness in his heart, is brave and kind, and runs down the hallway saving the world before bedtime. I like that A, despite being a “sophisticated” second-grader who says “su-weet” all the time, dances around the living-room singing along with these truly sweet (innocent) songs.

But anyway, I wasn’t planning on blogging about Eric Traplin. It just happens that F’s turned it on and is dancing around the living-room singing along … in fact, it’s the superhero song.

Preparations. As I said in my previous post, our schedule feels relentless these days, with no time to stop and catch our collective breaths. Or say hello to each other (me and Kevin). And to add to this, we are preparing for a pilgrimage of sorts tomorrow night. Hallowe’en night. Last year, on Hallowe’en, Kevin’s dad Jim died of cancer at around 6pm. The kids had just gotten dressed up for trick-or-treating when Kevin’s mother called with the news (she’d called about an hour earlier asking Kevin to come home as soon as possible, which we were already preparing for). As soon as the news came that Jim had died, I looked at Kevin and said, “We’re all going to go along with you.” But first, Kevin took the kids trick-or-treating. We decided not to tell them until afterward. While they were out, I packed for the trip. By the time they were home with their loot, I’d made necessary phone calls and gotten organized. We explained to the kids what was happening, changed them into pajamas, and drove off into the night–about a five-hour journey. It was an oddly and unexpectedly wonderful trip for our whole family. It felt like an adventure, full of significance and mystery and emotion. We were sad and the two older children had questions about death and Grandpa Jim, but it felt positive, not scary. At the time, Kevin and I almost jokingly said we should make that trip every year, as a way of marking Jim’s passing–making up our own unique and uniquely meaningful family tradition.

So we’re going to try it out. I love the idea, but am feeling overwhelmed by the logistics. Not only is tomorrow Hallowe’en (that would be the point), but the kids also have swim lessons right after school, and Nina’s very last buying club of the year (hopefully not forever!) is tomorrow night, and I couldn’t resist ordering even though it was, frankly, madness to add that in to the packing and the trick-or-treating and the rest of it.

I found this week that I was having greater than usual difficulty organizing myself, and I started making all these lists. I have a list for every day with all the mundane details written out: meal menus, what veggies in the fridge need to be eaten, and all the weird little odds and ends that dance across my brain ever so briefly and if not immediately attended to slip just as quickly away, probably till some three o’clock in the morning moment when “order cheques” is pretty much an impossibility. The lists made me feel slightly more in control. I haven’t put blogging or writing on any list, however. This week I ended up not having any writing day whatsoever. Kevin had a dentist appointment this morning, so I hosted playgroup instead. Then my babysitter cancelled on the afternoon too. Oh well.

Abruptly must end. Kids need their mama.

Hanging With Kids, Not Hanging Laundry

1 Comment

  1. Julia

    We are thinking of you today, and will raise a glass in Jim’s memory this evening. Give Kevin a hug for me.


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