Friday, August 30, 2002

Ok, I've figured out over the past 2 days that I'm not suited to be a child care provider in my home. I would go *nuts*! Saskia's little friend Jill has been here since early yesterday morning, as I wrote yesterday and the other kids have had non-stop friends here. No problem, everyone is entertained.

However, I've been stuck in and around the house for 2 days and all I can say is ARGH! The mess is getting to me, the house is getting to me, the bored children (which Saskia and Jill are now, after so many hours together) are getting to me! Whine! I'm just not used to being able to go anywhere. I think the fact that when I open a closet door, the contents come crashing out, doesn't help. But I've given myself until the 15th of September before I'll start tackling that problem. Too much going on before then (and really, once the closets are organized, they'll last 2 months tops, till Christmas at the most). I'm chanting Phyllis Diller's saying to myself all day: Cleaning the house while the kids are still growing is like shoveling the walk while it's still snowing :). Plus I'm telling myself that I'd rather have messy closets and happy kids around, than a quiet house with perfect closets. This house is to live in, not a museum after all (ok, so that's the extent of the positive self speech, basically).

At least Christine came over to work out with me this morning, that was a welcome diversion.

Katja went to her orientation and came home all happy, so that went well and this afternoon we're going to the parent-student orientation. They are really good about helping the children weather the school transition, I have to say! They even gave a guide on "How to survive the first week in school", in it it stresses constantly how it's no problem if they're a little late for class the first few weeks as they're feeling their way around the school. Each "team" (there are 3 teams per grade) has their own counselor to whom they can turn for any questions, concerns or problems. It's all giving me a good feeling, also that the literature stresses that parents are welcome at any time of the day.

Thursday, August 29, 2002

Things that made me happy (starting this up again!):
1. Having so many (7) kids truly enjoy our house and for 5 whole hours not utter a word of discord or discontent!
2. Having my friend Christine over for an equally long time and just utterly enjoying each other's company
3. Seeing my hubby buddy Rick again, how fun to be married to him!!!
4. Having something to occupy my thoughts on September 11th, it will make a big difference for me
5. Feeling much better about life again than I did a few days ago!
Today I woke up with a start at 8am, as I was "supposed" (self supposition ;)) to start working out at 9am (at home) in order to be done by 10, when Saskia's friend Jill was supposed to be here. Jill's mom and I saw at the same time that Saskia and Jill's summer camp was over after yesterday. Jill's mom works full time and I could tell she was in trouble as to what to do with Jill. So I on the spot offered to take care of her those 2 days. Jill is a super sweet little girl and Saskia loves to have a friend over, so we would both benefit. And so it came to be.

Around 10:20, when I had just finished my workout and was quite sweaty, Jill's mom dropped her off. I quickly showered then and Kai, Saskia, Jill and I (Katja was still in bed!) walked to the school for the open house. Today it felt like everywhere I went, I picked up an extra child ;). The open house was lots of fun, seeing people we hadn't seen all summer, meeting the teachers (who I knew already, but the kids didn't), both Kai and Saskia have very enthusiastic, fun teachers. I was thrilled to see I could chaperone a field trip for Kai's class on September 11th, as I'd been worrying about that day and how to avoid the constant media frenzy and worry about the next attack. Plus a good friend signed up as the other chaperone, so it'll be fun! They're going to a children's festival.

During the open house, Kai picked up a friend who came home with us and on the way home, Katja's friend Meghan went with us too. So I had 6 kids to feed lunch to, pizza time!

Around 2pm my friend Christine and her daughter came to visit and they just left after dinner around 8:30. I love being the drop in house where everyone just feels at home! Jill, Saskia's friend, told me this morning "Saskia's mom, your house is fun to play in". That's what I like to hear! It made my day :).

Rick is on his way home and tomorrow is the big middle school orientation. My house is a mess, but it's being lived in and enjoyed and that's all that counts, right?

Wednesday, August 28, 2002

Oh boy, where to start! In the beginning of this week (especially Sunday and Monday) I felt like all the family stress and tensions were finally getting to me, as I was waking up feeling sad and down, never a good start of a day. On Sunday I cleared it up by going to the gym and meeting all kinds of friends to talk to and that made me realize, just how many people I care about here.

On Monday Christine and I took a step class and that was great! I love step, because you have to concentrate the whole hour, otherwise you're either off beat or off step. Great way to not think of "life" for a bit.

Then I took Kai to get his school clothes. We first went to Target and I committed the cardinal sin of not letting him try his clothes on and the result of course was, that the pants were too small, so I'll have to return those. Then to Kids R Us, where he did try everything on and came away with 2 pair of pants and a bunch of shirts. Now we just have to search for more pants.

Rick left for beautiful :-P Montgomery, Alabama and had kind of a problem finding a hotel, as the one he had booked turned out to be an hour out of town! Now he's staying at a Days Inn closer in. He'll be home tomorrow night.

Yesterday I felt much better emotionally, why I don't know, weird how the mind works, but I'll take the positive side of me any day. I took a weights class and am sore as can be now, but it was fun.

Then I took Kai downtown to finally see the T-Rex 3D IMAX at the Natural History Museum. It was a really good movie! Not as scary as I'd feared from the picture.

After the movie, we visited the Giant Squid on exhibit in that museum. Scary creatures! It just amazes me every time though, we've been to that museum a zillion times and yet there are always things we haven't seen yet, the squids were one of those.

In the metro we had read that the American History Museum has a temporary exhibit called Inventions at Play and since Kai is such a budding scientist, I thought that might be fun to see too, so we went next door to the American History Museum. It's a wonderful exhibit! Interactive, learning about different inventors and how their way of playing got them to invent what they eventually were known for inventing. Kai loved it (so did I) and last night before bed he told me he wanted to become a paleontologist or an inventor :).

Last night the Fitzpatrick family came over for dinner as their "dad" was out of town as well, so the moms drank a nice glass of wine to the missed PTA meeting ;) and the kids played and we all had fun.

Today was the first super rainy day in months! Great for the vegetation and the water tables, but not good for entertainment value. When I got up this morning, my first discovery was Kai's frog and it's habitat on the floor in his room (and dead :(). The cats had had their way with it. Kai and I have now decided that his cat, Snickers, does not want Kai to have any other pets besides him ;).

After that disaster, I took Saskia to her last day at the summercamp at her school :(. She didn't seem upset about it, until this afternoon, when she saw her teacher assignment and new classmates at the new school (FWIW I love the teacher she's getting, so I'm thrilled and I'm sure just a day or so after starting, so will she be), when the tears suddenly came. Kai is in a class with a few of his friends and a very nice teacher, so happiness on his part.

Tonight, my dad came and we went to the nearby Japanese restaurant. Tomorrow night Rick will be home.