The kids are going to Vacation Bible School this week–and I am not in charge for the first time in six years. Believe me, it’s odd being one of those mothers who signs in her kids and then walks out footloose and fancy-free. I squandered my free time cleaning my house and packing a picnic lunch.
I picked up the kids at 12:03 p.m. (my son was on the phone, calling me because I was “late”). We picnicked at the grassy park overlooking the Puget Sound. The weather could not have been more lovely. The children were even sweet, raving over the sandwiches (sliced leftover chicken breast, bacon and cheese). My 10-year old wanted to see the local town museum, but it was closed. Instead, I took the teenagers (aka Party Poopers) home. The littler kids changed into swimsuits and we went to our town beach.
Grace sampled all the activities: climbed the playground equipment, swang on the swing, and then settled on throwing rocks into the Puget Sound and collecting crabs into a purple Easter bucket. Zach spent all his time turning over rocks in his quest to find crabs. He waded into the cold water a bit, too. Grace got her Converse high tops wet, then wanted them off (against my judgment), then wanted them back on her sandy feet. The beach is rocky, full of barnacles and hard on the feet. She learned that the hard way.
After two hours at the beach, we headed directly to the pool where they swam for another two and a half hours.
When we returned home, the house appeared to be in the very same condition it was in the morning–before I spent two hours cleaning up. Okay, maybe not quite that bad, but the boys had snacked and left a mess in the kitchen and devoured more than their share of the packs of M&Ms that I bought to put into the pool bag. And then they discarded the wrappers on the floor. I was not happy.
Also, I was very tired after the day full of fun.
(As an aside: I am currently reading John Steinbeck’s East of Eden. I’ve never read it before.)
I ironed a bunch of pairs of pants for my husband, then worked for four hours. If I’m lucky, I’ll be asleep by 1:00 a.m.
And sadly, tomorrow I begin work at 8 a.m. and will put in 12 hours on the computer before my day is done at midnight tomorrow night. (Three separate shifts.)
But, boy, did we have fun today! Why is having fun so exhausting when you’re the one in charge of packing the picnic, driving the car and keeping watch?