It started off like an other non-beachy Sunday. I was up early before anyone else. Coffee. Paper. Laundry. Ahhhh…..the quiet of morning work makes me just want to sing….and dance…really quietly though. I don’t want to wake anyone and ruin the quietness.
Pretty soon, they all start crawling out of the woodwork.
"Mom, can you make pancakes?"
"What? Are you kidding? It’s my Sunday, too, you know." Okay. I didn’t really say that. I just ignored it and made them some eggs and toast and a fruit smoothie.
Then, the phone rang. We were invited to spend the sunny Sunday afternoon around Grandma’s pool. Hours of lazing around the big backyard, soaking up the sun, while the kids worked out every ounce of energy in the pool until they couldn’t stand up anymore and we would be forced to drag their exhausted, sleeping bodies home to bed. Sweet! We’re in.
Futz around the house. Walk on the treadmill. Shower. Suits. Sunscreen..and we’re off!
Now, here’s where things started to kind of get funny. The cousins were there (we knew they would be), and after about 5 minutes together, my niece asks if my daughter can spend the night with her. Aside from the fact that the idea of being down by one for the night makes me want to twirl around doing cartwheels, I wasn’t sure how she’d do. She’s never been the greatest sleepover-er. Add to that the fact that we had only one change of clothes, no pajamas, no blanket and no pillow pet, and I was pretty darn skeptical. But, she begged and pleaded, and once it was made clear that the sleepover would be at Grandma’s house, it was pretty much a done deal.
Once that had been decided, my daughter told us, quite matter-of-factly, that it was now time for us to leave. She was going to have a sleepover and it was going to start immediately. Didn’t make a whiff of difference that it was only 2:30 in the afternoon. No fun could possibly begin while I was in residence, and she wasn’t about to wait until my sun-worshipping was done. She’s always been impatient like that.
We lolled around a while longer. Unbeknownst to me, whispers were being placed in my nephew’s ear. He’s younger and maybe didn’t really take the hint my son was slamming him over the head with, so as the cousin’s are getting ready to leave, my son says, out loud and in front of everyone,
"Hey, when I can spend the night at your house?"
Cut to me diving into the pool, burrowing through the concrete at the bottom, and building a home for the rest of my life. How many times have we talked about inviting ourselves places? Talked about what inviting ourselves means? Warned that if I ever hear him inviting himself somewhere, my answer will always be no, no matter how fun it sounds? That it’s rude and improper and inappropriate and embarrassing.
Did I mention the burrowing into the concrete?
No worries. My brother took it in stride. He’s cool like that. They’d been wanting to do a sleepover anyway. Quick call home to check with the mom, and just like that, we were kid-free for the whole night. Now, I was ready to go. Let the kid-free twirling and cartwheeling bliss begin.
Sooooooo…..now what? Are we supposed to, like, do something?
We walked in the house, no. Wait. We got out of the car….completely unencumbered. It took, like, I don’t know. Two seconds? Wow. Then we walked in the house….completely unencumbered. That took about half a second. No one pushed through. No one yelled that you’re in my way! No one immediately started scouring the kitchen for snacks and drinks. No one dumped all of their stuff right in the entryway for everyone else to have to trip over. We just walked in the house. Just….walked in.
Once we got there, we weren’t really sure what to do.
"Do you want to go out for dinner?"
"I guess. Where do you want to go?"
"Well…ummm…..How about McDon….No. Wait…..Chuck E…..Hold on. I know this. I know this…."
"Why don’t we just grill up the chicken that’s marinating?"
"Sub sandwiches! I knew I’d get it!"
"Start the grill, Big Man."
While he worked on the chicken, I stir-fried up some veggies, and we enjoyed some very lovely complete sentence conversation. We sat down to a quiet dinner in front of Lester Holt, just like we used to do. On the couch. Afterward, as we were sinking into our kid-free bliss, he turned to me and said,
I apologize in advance for the use of this extremely over done phrasing.
Pardon my french, but are you fucking kidding me? We’re alone in the house for the first time in about 153 years, and you want to go visit the chicks? Just gimme a minute to grab the slug bait and I can get some work done while we’re out there, you romantic devil. Visit the chicks. Sheesh! So I looked him right in the eye and said,
"Okay." I decided not to grab the slug bait. I didn’t want to use up all the fun at once, you know.
So, we’re out in the back yard. Chicks, chicks, chicks.
Water the plants. Pull some weeds.
Take some pics.
And we’re back inside to the couch.
If you didn’t know, or weren’t aware, Sunday night TV about sucks. And without a Netflix envelope to open, we were stuck with a ball game….until I convinced him to watch the pilot episode of "The West Wing." I’ve totally gotten back into the first season and was sure he’d love it. Now, pilot episodes can be kind of tough. New characters and personalities to figure out. The plot lines are strange and confusing. You really have no idea what’s going on, so I’m not too sure how much he was liking it. That’s not true. I know he hated it, but he didn’t give up on it, and just as I was about the start the second episode the phone rang.
Being that it was 9:30 at night, I figured that it was Grandma calling to say that my daughter was freaking out and wanted to come home, but the caller ID said it was my brother’s house. Hmmmmmm……my son was probably just calling to say good night or something.
I never talk to him on the phone and it’s always weird to hear how small and young he sounds. His voice was so little and high-pitched. He could have been four, not in fourth grade.
"I want to come home."
WHAT!?! Pardon my french, but are you fucking kidding me!?! You’re the one who wanted to go there! You’re the one who invited yourself over! You’re the one who said, "When can I? When can I? When can I?" And now you want to come home? FORGET IT! You made your sleepover….so….you know….sleep in it! So, I looked him straight in the phone and said,
"If we come and get you, you won’t be spending the night anywhere ever again for the rest of your life."
"Okay. How long will it take you to get here?"
He said that he just really missed us. He’d had a lot of fun, but that going to sleep at someone else’s house was just too different and he missed hearing our sounds. I get that, I guess. So fine. We went and got him. He was grinning from ear to ear as he climbed into his own bed. His light was on just so. The radio was playing the station that he likes. As I walked out of the room, I heard him say,
"I know you’re mad, but I’m really glad to see you."
I turned to him. "I’m not mad. I’m disappointed, but I’m not mad."
"I’m not mad!"
"Yeah. You’re mad."
I rolled my eyes and walked out of the room. Truth be told, it was nice to have him in his bed. It would have felt sad and lonely for neither of them to be home during the night. And it would have felt really sad and lonely to wake up in the morning and have coffee and read the paper and get Prince Charming out the door and work pictures and do some writing all without the bouncing off the walls noise and questions that usually surround me in the morning. Yeah….that would have been really sad and lonely. Totally…..I know.
And what do you suppose he said when he came out of his room in the morning? Was it
A.) I’m so glad to see you and be home. You’re the best parents in the whole world!
B.) I’m so glad that I made that choice. It feel so right to be here with you guys. You’re the best parents in the whole world!
C.) I wish I was back over there! They’re having blueberry pancakes for breakfast!
If you chose A or B, I love you. Would you like to come and live with us?
If you chose C, pardon my french, but….oh, forget it. I just got out the stuff and made the friggin’ pancakes.
Post Script: The girls had a lovely time during their sleepover at Grandma’s and are currently planning their next Princess Polish Party Extravaganza.
Post-Post Script: The Prince and I are now making up a list of possible dinner locations and outings for when we find ourselves alone again in another 153 years.
Tagged: , project 52 , MCP Project 52 , chicken , chick , hen , hen house , hidden objects