Peter left yesterday morning for a week's worth of training in the DC area, and I was bound and determined to have everything flow smoothly this week. Not that his presence is necessary to have that happen, but there is that certain ebb and flow when you realize you are not the only responsible party within 3,000 miles who can care for your house, crazy cat, or usually adorable children.
Since the last trip went relatively smoothly, I thought I would simply copy the same game plan, and just tweak things here and there. Rather than go nuts and start off with a crazy schedule, we would have the relaxing Sunday up front. Part of it would be a family meeting to determine the week's meals (and who would help cook them), and the rest would simply involve getting our of our jammies, and more importantly, out of the house.
No problem! The day flew by as we spent time doing odds and ends around the house, and then headed to Osage Park in Danville. The girls would uncovered dinosaur bones in the play area, while Nicholas and I did walking/running intervals on the circular trail. Fabulous! We even had plenty of time to spare to go home, change, and then get to the teen mass.
In theory, it would have been fine, except that not only did I forget snacks for Nicholas (Annie's cheddar bunnies are a lifesaver), but the mass was extra long due to a special homily and introduction of the those preparing for confirmation. No, Nicholas was not happy.
He had not taken nap that day, and he squealed and squirmed, and I was ready to call it quits before the collection was taken. We ended up staying as I had promised the kids we would head to the family dinner afterward (translation: no cooking or cleaning for me), and Nicholas briefly made amends with everyone when he clapped wildly and shouted, "Yea!!" when the teen band finished singing.
Thankfully, the rest of the evening was fairly uneventful, and even bedtime was fine. The only hitch was a slightly later bedtime due to the late mass and dinner...and with Kelsey, early or late to bed....late to rise.
She is NOT a morning person. Combine that with someone else who is not a morning person trying to wake previously aforementioned non-morning person, and you have a lethal combination. I try to be patient (translation: drink at least one cup of coffee prior to waking her up), but I am usually trying to get two people going, and stop a third from destroying their rooms (to prevent the litanies of "he's touching my stuff!!!") while doing so. Not nearly as easy as it sounds.
She dawdled and she dallied, and I finally lost it. The embarrassing part? I really lost it when she couldn't find her glasses. I had about given up when I found them on the kitchen counter, the pink frames blending nicely with the granite in the counter top. Who put them there? Me. Sigh.
For whatever reason, she got over it. We dropped Cait and co. off at the middle school, and made it to Kelsey's school in time to drop her off in the front. I headed back home for a second cup of coffee, and by 9:30 a.m., I was had it - again. Between the shower drain not working, and the master bath being flooded by the toilet that was clogged by one piece of paper (or perhaps something Nicholas thought to throw down),the morning was in the toilet. The best part? The property manager decided not to call Pete back (despite the fact he told him it was urgent), as he thought "we were all on vacation on the East Coast." If we were, would we really be asking for a repairman to show up the next day?
We made it to swim lessons early, and miraculously had not forgotten anything. Nicholas swam his little heart out, and I quickly dressed him and we headed home. He remembered that I had two "pleases" (pieces of candy) in my purse that he had been carting around all morning. He loved clutching them in his sweaty little hands, and I didn't care, as he seemed to show no interest in eating them. Until now. I looked in the rear-view mirror and saw this face just as we were about to turn into our neighborhood.
He was so happy, and so proud, though, that I just couldn't get mad. He had somehow managed only to smear on his face and hands, and there didn't seem to be a drop of chocolate anywhere else. Despite my best efforts, I had to laugh. Now don't think that I didn't still sit down with my glass of Zinfandel, and cranberry cheese with the Raincoast Crisps last night, desperately trying to find my DVR-ed episode of House (another non-House night, what is going on??). No, the bathroom clean up alone earned me that chunk of heaven. Still, nothing like a Little Guy happily covered in smeary cocoa, and bursting with pride as he licks the wrapper to remind you that not all is lost, in fact, perhaps something good (and yummy) was just found.