15 June 2015

Long Day

Today started out well.  Nathan is finally home from all of his travels over the past eight months, and I was looking forward to mapping out the next week or two with him over a leisurely breakfast.

Children, however, intervened.

It seemed as though everyone woke up in a cranky mood today.  Maybe it was the weather.  Needless to say, halfway through preparing breakfast, a baby needed to nurse, a six year-old was absolutely starving, and a nine year-old was already having some alone time.  Oof.

Nathan has a deadline on Wednesday, so he headed out early to write, and I drafted a lovely list of things to do.  I started in on them right away, and, having called to reinstate our car insurance (we will be driving around the Midwest this summer), I called the bank to release a hold on our online account (one too many password tries had locked me out).

At which point I found out we were $250 overdrawn.


Apparently, the fancy mobile deposit system neglected to deposit a $200 check last week.  So that - with all the overdraft fees - accounted for the lack of money in our account.

At this point, I get a text from a friend asking if we could meet up today.  I looked semi-longingly at my list.  But then weighed in my mind how terrible the day would get if we didn't get out at all (all of my list items were in-house).

So we jetted out the door to meet her and her son at the Metropolitan Museum of Art.  She's an artist herself, so it was lovely to go to a place and appreciate beautiful things together.

We did a little Met scavenger hunt - one of the many family brochures they have available for the public - in the Islamic Art Galleries.

Here is a photo of Elsie (on the right), drawing, and sitting next to her good friend, P, who is looking through his bag.  There is a random lady in the background, meditating or something.  She was clearly moved by the beauty in this wing.

We then took some rather hungry children outside to one of the playgrounds to eat.  But of course they did not eat.  When presented with slides and swings, who wants food?

Then the rain came.  We sat for a minute and decided it wasn't going to stop, and so gathered up ourselves, hugged our friends goodbye, and hopped on the bus.  We rode through Central Park and hopped off, bouncing the stroller down the stairs to the train.

We took the local C train all the way from 86th to 168th - the end of the line there - and transferred to the A train.  Eleanor had nursed to sleep on the C train, so we weren't in any hungry baby rush.  I only had to deal with cranky big kids, who had neglected to eat their lunches.

At 207th, we were pushed off the elevator by a cranky old man, who decided that he got preference (even though we were in line first).  I tried to take the high road, but I shot him a rather withering look.

The rain was coming down in earnest, so I took my cranky children across to C-Town grocery to get some broccoli for dinner, and maybe some ice cream.  Because I needed it.  Olivia's mood lightened a bit at the choice of ice cream, but - alas - when I got to the register, I didn't have my wallet.

Elsie lost all self control at this point, and Olivia muttered how she knew "it was too good to be true."

After hastily reshelving our items, we emerged into the rain again.  Elsie and I put up our umbrellas, but Olivia - who had very solidly decided she was going to be mad (to be clear - there was nothing precipitating this episode except a lack of lunch - no one had been mean or cross towards her at all), shunned her umbrella, and stomped quite loudly all the way home in the rain.

I got some looks from neighbors who must have imagined I was punishing my child for something by denying her the use of her umbrella.  Oy veh.

At home, I rushed to make some sandwiches.  Elsie demanded some music and Olivia slammed some doors so we would all know how angry she was.

Eleanor - blessedly - slept.

Problem #1:  The bread was moldy, and I hadn't been to the grocery (with my wallet) in a few days.
Solution:  I made pancakes.

Problem #2:  Elsie wanted music (I knew this was the case because she kept screaming and crying about how she *needed* music - more than food - for at least 15 minutes).
Solution:  Olivia stomped out of the bedroom, said "You want music?  Fine!" and proceeded to play a song on her recorder

Problem #3:  Elsie didn't want that kind of music.
Problem #4: Olivia didn't want any criticism.
Solution: I persuaded the children to put food in their mouths so no one could talk.

Oh my lord, I am so tired even recounting all of this.

At some point, one of my wonderful neighbors sent me a text and says she's making gluten free mac & cheese for dinner and asks if she can pop it in my oven while she runs to pick up her kiddos (we have a standing weekly potluck date).  She brings it down and it is nice to see an adult who is not screaming or crying.  She also brings me flowers, because she is also a mom, and she knows how it is.

Food in the oven, I try to figure out some other veg to contribute to our potluck.  I throw some lentil soup together and find some peas from the market in our refrigerator.

We tramp upstairs and I get to hang out with a sane person who can speak in complete sentences and is not asking me to get her anything.  I am able to take an artistic photo of some peas.

We talk and eat and it is lovely.

Then I have to take my children downstairs.  Elsie hides in two different places while Eleanor fusses because she is tired.  I balance all the dishes and the baby, and head to the door.  Olivia has gone ahead, and is thinking she is sneaking eating the peas as she carries them down, but I know better.  Elsie storms into the hall and accuses me - quite loudly and echo-ily - of leaving *on purpose.*  I don't deny it.

I tell Elsie that she will have some alone time if she screams at me again the hallway, because that it simply not appropriate.

We get into our house without too much more noise.

No, that is a lie.  We were very noisy.

It is now time to wash the people and put them in bed.  I proceed to do so.

Then I fold laundry and tidy the bedroom.

(Oh, and at some point earlier in the day, I recaulked the kitchen sink.  I just wanted you to know.)

We say prayers and go to sleep.

And by "we," I mean my children.

I am not sleepy, only exhausted.  So I watch a terrible mystery show on Netflix.  Then I poke around on Facebook some.  And fold some more laundry.  And nurse the baby, who finally falls asleep.

I text my best friend, who is getting ready for a big move.

Then Nathan comes home.  I tell him this same story.  He laughs.  It is good to laugh, even though it wasn't really funny at the time.  I feel better.

Then I write this post.

Now I am going to sleep.  Tomorrow is another busy day.



katjandu said...

Oh my I'm worn out already! I just wanted to say I like your weekly pot-luck day. It's those types of things that help us to remain sane; sort of like a little anchor in your week you can count on. Thanks for sharing these times with us.

Anonymous said...

I read this blog to Grandma tonight and she loved it.

Glad you have not lost your sense of humor.

Uncle John