Monday, August 14, 2006

Now Showing: Life With Kids

Well, regular life has begun for me again. I am actually starring in the role of Mom again in the now-playing drama/comedy/sometimes horror “Life With Kids”. It is amazing how much I have missed being this character over the last couple of months. It's a role that I don't want to relinquish in this lifetime. I'm sure I'm a shoe in for it; I'm taking the part with no pay. They can't find a better deal than that.

Friday at one o’clock, I was waiting at the designated spot to hook up with the in-awes. While reading (One Tuesday Morning – good book, oh what a crier!), my daughter comes running up to the car with the hugest grin on her face. She barely let me open the door to hug her before she tackled me. It had to be one of the longest, strongest hugs I have ever receive; that’s saying a lot considering the hugs that I have had the privilege to have! Eventually she let me hug her brother too. I think he missed me a bit as well.

We walked into Wendy’s to eat lunch together and from that moment on, my ears were ringing. Both kids had so much to say, usually at the same time. During lunch, I felt that I was going to have whiplash the way my head was swinging back and forth to hear what each of them had to say. (You know I had to sit in between them.) At one point, they were both talking and I could not keep up with them so I had to get everyone to take turns, my father-in-awe included. (My mother-in-awe was just sitting across the table, stifling each giggle from the moment. Of course, it may just be because she was gleeful at the anticipation of sleeping in the next morning or the quiet, uninterrupted ride on the way home or going to bed earlier or...)

My son was talking a mile a minute, and when I thought he was done and his sister started to speak, he reached around my head, put both hands on my cheeks and turned my head so that I could still listen to him. He didn’t put his hands down until he finished his words. It was so adorable and so perfect for the way that he wanted to show he valued my attention, that he wanted me to look him in the eye and really listen to him as he explained each character in some show that they had seen on Disney. (Does Ben Ten sound familiar? It was something like that anyway.)

(I wonder if it is like that with God. Does He often put my face between His hands and look me in the eyes to say, “Listen to me. I love you and I want you to devote all of your attention to me and what I am saying”? I would love to say that He never has to get my consideration, but that would be an all out lie. But I love the thought of Him caring enough to make the effort for that kind of talk with him. I’d love the thought more if He never had to do that in the first place.)

After lunch, we eventually transferred all their stuff from the grandparents’ van to my car. I’m pretty sure I only took three bags up to their place. How is it that all the stuff multiplied and at least 10 bags made it into the car? But I will take it because they totally aided us by purchasing the school supplies. I’m sure Grandma made that trip to the store much more fun than I would have. Usually, I’m rushing them to avoid the crowds. “Just grab the cheap stuff and move on!” She has a much more patient way with them than I do. "Do you like this bag? Oh, these are such cute folders. Why don't you pick out the ones that have those characters you like..." Grandma's are just like that.

The ride home was fun and the kids were able to enjoy a little Gameboy time. They had been suffering withdrawals from it for the past two months. Me? I see it as building character, of course, I’m the old fuddy-duddy mom who could care less about those little games. They were aloud to play for a short time, but then I wanted them to talk with me about all the stuff they had been doing over the last couple of days.

We did make it home, but it was too early for my daughter to see her surprise that we had for her birthday. I made them stay away from the second floor, even though it was about to kill my daughter. She knew she had a surprise coming, but she didn’t know what. She guessed a new bed, but then she said she really didn’t know. The hardest part was that Mr. Right made it home ½ hour late, so her wait was longer than normal. They “made do” by playing with Tenni, the cat they hadn’t seen all summer. That distraction more than made up for the delay. That poor cat is not going to know how to walk if the kids keep carrying her everywhere!

Mr. Right finally made it home, and my daughter begged to head upstairs. He said dinner could wait and then slowly we made our way up the stairs. When we arrived, we turned to our daughter and said, “This is for your birthday. Happy 10th, sweet girl.” And then we turned her around to see…

To be continued tomorrow…

(I know, mean aren’t I?)

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