Wednesday, May 11, 2011

Outside is good! Except for all the people...

We have been so happy to enjoy hours outdoors every day for the last few days! If only they didn't have to come in and do pointless homework :(. We've been getting crazy with chalk and bubbles and tumbling down the hill and playing in the sandbox. So much fun!

This morning I kept IM home a bit longer so he could go to an appointment with his therapist. He sat in the living room and watched PBS with M-girl this morning while I got a shower. Then I did a few house things and loaded up IM and M-girl to go to the appointment. We had the $.75 ready to pay the weird parking attendant who stalks people in the parking lot (not his fault, they just have the parking lot set up strangely). We got upstairs and past the first waiting room remarkably quickly and then checked in at the therapist's office only to find out that the secretary had written today on the card but had entered tomorrow into her computer. She and I have an awful lot of misunderstanding, and the blame doesn't seem to lie with me as she seems to be in flustered minor conflict with everyone I see her speak with. She tried to fit us in, but the therapist had a new client and couldn't make any adjustments. We rescheduled for just before he sees the doctor in the same office, saving ourselves a copay. The only real problem was that IM was worried he'd be in trouble for not being in school or going to an appointment, so the secretary wrote an excuse, and I attached the appointment card to it. No worries on the school's end, but it was kinda funny since he goes to this office to alleviate his anxiety, not to increase it!

I dropped IM off at school and stopped by Dr. O's office to share my latest fiasco. Then M and I made a quick stop at the big park where she played until she got a significant boo-boo that panicked her. We returned home, where she held a wipe on her little knee scrape for 2 hours as she ate lunch and watched too much Caillou before going down for a late nap.

I worked on laundry, started the breadmachine, hung diapers in the sun, and did some minor clean-up before getting my small dose of sun for the day. My neighbor was in a foul mood and was cursing pretty badly at another neighbor two doors down, but I decided to continue doing what I wanted to do. I kept my door open, played some music, and made some noise so he'd know I could hear him. It usually works, and he did calm down. Worst case scenario is for me to yell his first name, and then he's extremely apologetic and quiet for days.

Neighbors are the only fly in the ointment of our summertime outdoor fun. Two doors down, the neighbor's girlfriend wants to be my buddy, and it's just not gonna happen. The only thing we appear to have in common is that M-girl and her son are the same age, but M is very shy only interested in parallel play at best. Neighbor girl has no clue about the fine art of playdating, a series of rituals and norms that moms who want to hang out have to observe. I have a fourth on the way, loads of work to do, partial bedrest hours to comply with, and a parenting philosophy that I know would be either off-putting or carnival-attraction-strange to her. She's already commented on the cloth diapers on my line. I should probably get one playdate at the little park down the street out of the way and hope she doesn't ask again.

I have friends who make all kinds of parenting choices, and I support them gladly. However, most of my mom friends and I have at least SOME things in common. Neighbor girl yells at her little boy a lot, her boyfriend owns a discount tobacco store, they have two sattelite receivers on their obviously sagging roofline, and yet he drives a luxury car. They are just very different from us, upwardly-mobile Appalachian perhaps, and I don't want to spend awkward time with people I know we don't have anything in common with AND who constantly argue with our mutual neighbor. My goal is to be kind and to live a peaceful life with my family in order to maintain a decent Christian testimony, but I don't have to be every mom's friend.

Neighbor troubles aside, we enjoyed four hours outdoors. While I moved laundry, the kids fixed their own snack out back, using up the better part of a box of Honey Nut Chex, yet they were surprisingly hungry for dinner. We loved grilling dinner and eating outdoors last night, and by then the bugs and humidity were minimal. M looked like she was trying out for a part in Shrek XVII thanks to a coating of sweat and green sidewalk chalk dust. We rounded out the night with fruit salad, homework, and baths. Can't wait until school is out!


  1. Now I want an explanation of your wacky parenting ways! Do you recommend any parenting books/philosophies? Steven and I consider it a letdown if a major life announcement doesn't raise questions (mostly from family members) about our mental competency, or at the very least raise a few eyebrows. I doubt that our parenting choices will be an exception, should we ever have children.

  2. I'll need to write a Danica-dedicated post, but the short answer is that we are attachment parents and Dr. Sears is the crunchy place to start! There's a lot of history about our personal choices, but I'm happy with our direction.