Saturday, June 30, 2007

Project 365: June 30

This man drove up to PA to take the girls to camp, returned home at 11:30 that night and left the house at 5:15 the next morning for flight to Alaska. This picture was taken a mere 27 hours after he began his trip home. The only thing he was interested in doing was going to sleep and reading the letters we'd gotten from the girls.

A Very, Very, Very Long Day

On this the last day that David would be gone, we left the house in time (we thought) to get to the post office before it closed so we could get letters in the mail to the girls. Alas, our post office closes at the weird hour of 11 am on Saturdays. Once we made it to town and stood in line at the main post office, we decided that we needed pancakes. We'd had an earlier offer but Will hadn't quite woken up at the time so we'd passed on that offer. Still pancakes were on our brain. We headed to IHop and on the way called VJ, who said she'd gladly stop shopping and join us! Will squealed with delight when I told him she was joining us!
Where ever we go these days we take a pile of cars and Bible Buddies, and lots of good books. VJ was good enough to read to Will while we waited patiently for our food.

After pancakes we walked up the shopping center and looked at stuff. We found charms for Will's crocs and some other cool things.

We decided to stay in town and meet David at the airport instead of waiting for him at home, so we headed to the library. We signed all of the kids up for the summer reading programs and read about 10 books together before we headed out to go to the airport. On the way I got a message that the plane was delayed. Super. Will was really at the end of his waiting-for-Daddy-to-get-home rope and we now had another hour. So, we went to DQ.

After ice cream, we went to the airport to wait for Daddy's plane. On the way Will told me that only he and his Daddy could fly in it because only boys can fly. Oh, really?! The little fibber told me that his Daddy told him that! It's a good thing his sisters aren't here!

(Oh, and check out his outfit. He's into dressing himself these days, and I just let him! This outfit matched he said because "it has a flag here and a flag here." And cowboy boots go with everything!)

Finally, David arrived, only an hour later than planned. Oh! This boy was in heaven holding onto and hugging his Daddy tight!

Mesmerized by all things that turn, Will watched the baggage go round and round while he helped look for his Daddy's luggage. After a short while we realized that David's bags had not made it with him to the airport! Oh no! Explain that to the boy! After 26 hours in airports and on airplanes even David had a hard time comprehending the situation. The poor guy was wiped out!

So I dragged both of my weary men to dinner because we had no food in the house and because no one should have to cook on the last Saturday in June in a year that ends in a seven! While we waited too long for a table at the Outback Will played happily with his Thomas clings.

He couldn't get enough of his Daddy and kept snuggling in beside him. Finally Will gave up and just laid himself down on David's lap while we finished eating.

Nothing's better than having Daddy come home.

Friday, June 29, 2007

Project 365: June 29

When I called to tell Kathleen that I was coming to pick up Will and that we would be going to my softball game, she innocently asked if I needed her to throw him in the tub so he'd be clean. Now, this is a woman who has two very-into-being-a-boy boys of her very own. She should know better don't you think?! Silly woman. But still, wasn't it sweet of her to ask?!

Anyway, it made me laugh because this is what Will did to pass the time at the game this evening! He and his friend Carter played with their mote controls and the dirt but they still weren't as dirty as some of the dads out there on the field!

So Long Softball

As of tonight the regular season is over. We won our last game, but lost the make-up game. The play-offs come in a couple of weeks but my participation is at an end for this year. It's been fun and we'll definitely be back for more next year!

We had the cutest little umpire. He had just come off vacation so he wasn't too cranky, and was actually apologetic when he called me out. I was behind the plate tonight and was lucky to come away without losing some teeth or suffering a concussion. Our statistician kept reminding me not to stand so quickly after the pitch...and it took me awhile to actually see that I was putting myself in the way of the bat! Still, I wasn't the one carried away by the rescue squad.

Swim Lesson #3

Motivation might come from any of the following:

Being proud that you went under water when you really didn't want to!

Being proud that you were blowing bubbles and using your arms and legs!

Having a good time even though you were freezing!!

Kicking so hard that you splashed your mom!

Finally getting to wrap up in a warm towel!

Getting to pick out a ring pop!

Or not. It's definitely about the ring pop!

Project 365: June 28

Welcome to my day. For a very long time Will did not speak. And then he didn't speak much at all. Recently I think he's come down with something though, because all he does is talk now...

I remember when the two older girls went away to camp for the first time, and all of the sudden Katherine started talking nonstop. We realized that she hadn't been able to get a word in with her sisters around. They had always been there and had always had something to say. Maybe the same thing is going on with the boy. Who knows. It is kind of fun to hear what's on his mind minute-by-minute! At the same time I'm thankful for food because that also keeps his mouth busy!

Time For Work

Will and his Granddaddy moved mulch today. Not too much mulch - just enough for Will to build some roads next to the pond. I'm sure Granddaddy would have liked more roads built, so maybe we'll head back over there in a couple of days.

Will was pretty handy with the shovel and the pitchfork. He hasn't quite grasped the dangerousness of those tools yet, so we were all on constant alert!

After they worked we all sat down by the pond and watched the frogs and fish, talked about recent bear sightings and actually saw a deer. Oh, and we drank up all of Grandmama's lemonade! Boy, was that good!

Wednesday, June 27, 2007

Project 365: June 27

So, since it's just the boy and me this week, I thought I'd tackle one of the ugliest rooms in my house. This hall bathroom is the one that all of our guests use and it really could not be any more unpleasant looking! Really. It's an ugly green paint with lavender squiggles painted on - all of that over a dark blue wallpaper. Every room in this house is painted...over wallpaper. It's a nightmare.

So, I bought the stuff to deal with this painted over wallpaper, oh, about 3 years ago. I've been busy since then, but really, probably not that busy. Lucky for me the stuff doesn't go bad! I gave myself 4 days to get the old paper off - I figured one wall per day with a little wiggle room since the entire room isn't really covered. Alas, I'm on day 3 and I'm not finished with the first wall. Lots of reasons, or excuses, whichever you prefer. My new goal is to have the room stripped by the time we get the girls.

That's doable. Especially with my helper at my side!

I Went Walking

Will and I took Gracie (you remember Gracie!) for a walk down our road last night. Will wanted to hold the leash which was fine by me since it gave me free hands to take pictures, which is what I do*. It quickly became clear that Gracie was really too much for Will to handle so I warned him to hold tight to the leash or she might get away. Now, personally I would not have been too unhappy (I know, I'm cruel!) if she'd gotten away, and I certainly was not going to run after her, so I told him to hold her leash with two hands.

After a minute or two though I could hear the panic in his voice, "Gracie, no!" I thought to myself, as much as I wouldn't mind losing that dumb dog, I really couldn't let it be on Will's shoulders if we didn't have her when his sisters got back from camp. Darn! So, that's how I ended up holding the leash for the rest of the walk and ended up with mostly blurry pictures. It is, after all, very difficult to take pictures while trying to not to lose a dog.

* Some people think I've got a problem. Do you think there's a 12-step program available for photoholics?

Where In The World...?

This is the view from David's hotel window...not bad for a business trip.

Tuesday, June 26, 2007

Project 365: June 26

Hi Daddy!

Swim Lesson #2

Looks can be so deceiving. I think that in his short 30 minute swim lesson Will must have shouted "No!" more than 50 times. He didn't want to get wet, didn't want to go under, didn't want to blow bubbles, was afraid of the bugs, etc.

In the end Laura worked her magic...that and pure bribery.

Monday, June 25, 2007

Project 365: June 25

"It's just you and me Mommy."

That's the sweetness that I awoke to this morning. Well, the second time I as awakened anyway. The first time was at 5:15 when David rang the doorbell because he'd forgotten his keys! That wasn't so sweet, unless you count that I got to actually see him before he left!

Back to Will. Once he figured out that his sisters were at camp for a long time and that his Daddy was also gone "flying in his airplane," the boy was perfectly happy to snuggle in the bed and read stories and talk about the squirrels scampering up the trees.

"It's just you and me Mommy."

Will's First Sleepover

My new name is "chopped liver"!

When Will found out that he was sleeping over at Carter's house, he was so excited that he couldn't sit still. He gathered his things and packed them up in Katherine's pink and purple rolling suitcase. He also declared that he needed to borrow her sleeping bag because he was sleeping over at Carter's and Carter did not have another bed for him to use. Add to his pile his pillow, and he was all set.

Our initial plan was to go over after dinner, but then plans changed. We were invited to come for dinner. That threw the boy a bit. "Mommy, you have to go if dinner isn't ready, and you can come back when it's dinner time." "Then, Mommy, you can go and come back after I have my breakfast."

I encouraged him to accept the fact that I too needed to eat and that Carter's mommy would be sad if I didn't stay and talk for awhile. That became the new plan. Will would play with Carter while I talked with Carter's mommy. Then we would eat, and then I would leave.

That is exactly what I did.

Swim Lesson #1

While the girls are at camp, Will is having his swim lessons. All morning he talked about swimming with Gabe and Laura, and how Laura would stay with him and they would swim. He was full of confidence as we entered the pool area. He and Gabe were both giddy with excitement!

Once we got next to the pool he was even more excited. Then it was time to enter the water. He was pretty happy until the reality of what she was asking him to do set in. He wasn't sure about putting is head under the water, but he did it. Then she wanted them to blow bubbles. You want me to do what?! I'm not doing that!

Sunday, June 24, 2007

Project 365: June 24

This is the view of Morgan's cabin. I was not allowed to take any pictures of her anywhere near her cabin. In fact, I was almost not even allowed to see the inside of her cabin. She unpacked and made her bunk without my assistance, not because I wasn't willing to help, but because (I think) having a mother's help somehow diminishes a teenage girl in her own eyes. I wonder if having her mother's assistance doing laundry once camp is over would have the same effect?!

I did feel much better when I saw another girl from her cabin balking at having her picture taken. The girls commiserated, as did that mother and I.

Somerset Superstore Stop

Last year it was sneakers for Caroline and Katherine.

This year it was water shoes for Caroline, and shower shoes for Katherine, and a one-piece bathing suit for Morgan. Add to that pens, pads of paper, toenail clippers, cute red bandannas, hairbrushes and hair doohickeys.

That's enough!

SB2W - Drop Off

One of the first things that happened when we arrived at camp was lots of little girls squealing in delight over seeing their friends from last year return! They are not all together again this year, but are close enough that they'll have a great time together again while also making new friends.

One of the funnier things that happened while we were there was that I found out that the father of one of Katherine's cabin-mates was in my high school class. He said I looked familiar - I didn't think he did, though his name was familiar. I looked him up in my old yearbook this afternoon. He was one of the smarter guys, but didn't conform at all. He was really cute too, but had a girlfriend all through high school, so he wasn't one to waste your time wishing over! Not that I ever wasted any time wishing over boys. No way, not me!

After we were given the girls' cabin assignments, we helped them (well, two of them!) unpack and organize their things. In cabin #1, Katherine was assigned a top bunk - to her delight! She must have climbed up and down 20 times before I left her to go help Caroline. Caroline waited patiently for over 30 minutes for me to arrive in cabin #3. She hadn't unpacked the first item. Soon after we had her things in place, she wandered out to find her friends. Then I headed down to cabin #8 to see if Morgan needed any help. She met me on the road, told me that she'd already unpacked and that I could not take any pictures of her at her cabin. I complied, and only took one of the cabin!

All of the campers have a cubby to hold their "salem" supplies. Half of the girls are one one side, and the other half on the other side.

The good news this year is that the showers all have curtains around them! In the past only the private showers (which had shorter shower times) had curtains.

Parental obligations include taking pictures at every turn when a child does anything remotely interesting. Realizing that I am a parent and I was leaving 3 of my 4 children at camp for 2 weeks, I had to take the obligatory group shot. You can imagine the grumbling.

For the record, not everyone grumbled!

The clinic line was by far the least fun part of my day. It must have taken me 45 minutes to get through that line - all for allergy and cold meds.

Will refused to give his sisters hugs when we left, even Caroline who is usually the one who can get him to do anything! He was a bit discombobulated on the way home, wondering aloud the entire way who was where and when everyone would be home again. Thankfully he fell asleep before we got out of PA.

David always has a hard time leaving the girls anywhere, and even dislikes when they go on overnights to friends' houses. I wasn't sure he was going to let Katherine go. He did. She scampered back into her cabin and we saw through the screen that she climbed right up into her bunk. We even saw her wave to us as drove out of camp.

She was happy. Her sisters were happy. Everyone at camp was happy. Wonderful. That's the way we want it to be, but it sure didn't make us feel any less empty while we were driving home.

Saturday, June 23, 2007

Project 365: June 23

Orange is the perfect color to wear when eating cheese doodles. Cheese and cheese doodles are Will's favorite food groups these days!

When One Gets Too Big For One's Britches

Birthday parties are so much fun!!

Unfortunately for Morgan there were water balloons available at this party! She thought it was pretty funny to get other people wet, but didn't much like it when she got wet, or at least not at my behest, so she came after me!!!!

Silly girl!

She was warned not to try to get me wet, but I think maybe she had some water in her ears or something because she just couldn't stop trying.