Week in My Life 2014: Tuesday

I’m blogging every day this week for the Week In My Life link-up hosted by Kathryn at Team Whitaker.

It’s the day after Leo’s birthday, and so today still feels a little exciting. Leo’s first-grade class is going on a field trip today, but we decided to have him skip it and spend the day at Grandma’s house instead—and he is over the moon.

He is taking his favorite presents to Grandma’s house, and he’ll be opening three new presents there. After a day of excitement and stimulation, our 7-year-old is looking forward to a quiet day with Grandma and his birthday gifts.



After the boys enjoy soup for breakfast, John leaves with Leo to go to Grandma’s house, and Daniel and I get ready to go to his preschool. On the way out the door, however, I realize we never drew him a note to put inside his lunchbox. It doesn’t seem fair for him to miss out on it, so I draw it quickly as he waits in the doorway.



And then we’re off.



“Turn on the heat, silly!” Daniel sings out as I start to drive. I remind him that we don’t talk that way. Then I realize that he is right about how cold it is.

As we walk into school, we see a sign reminding us that today is Brown Day—a day to wear brown, pack something brown in your lunch, and bring something brown. Naturally I have forgotten completely.



“Isn’t it good you wore your brown shoes?” I say. “And you have brown eyes, and you brought your brown horse!”

Daniel doesn’t seem to care. He starts playing with his friends, so I say goodbye and walk to the car, passing this spectacular tree.



It was even prettier last week, but it’s still lovely, isn’t it?

On my way to the office, I stop at the grocery store, and I see this sign.



It sounds like a great goal. But what does it mean? Fewer bags than what? Than last year? Than projected for this year? Than in the past five years? Than paper bags? Than I use at home? I head into the store.

I pick up a few groceries to take to the office and a much-needed and almost-overdue birthday card for my father-in-law, and then I stop in the seasonal aisle. There waiting for me are shelves of half-price candy, just what I need to fill our Pokemon piñata for Leo’s party with his friends.



I have a great day at work, especially when I get out of my office. I walk across our campus (at Loyola University Maryland) just when the last of the sunlight is setting the trees on fire.



So I have to take a few photos.





Then I’m off to pick Leo up from my mother’s house, where he has been playing with a circuit toy she and my father gave him for his birthday.



He has been so focused that he forgot to eat his afternoon popsicle—ah, the joys of Grandma’s house—so my mother gives it to him to eat on the way home.

“How was your day?” I ask, as we drive off to pick up Daniel. “Was it as much fun as a field trip?”

“It was so much better than a field trip,” Leo says. “I got to play with Aunt Shai!”

I’m sure the field trip was terrific, but I feel certain I guessed right on what our boy needed today.

At Daniel’s preschool, Leo runs and I walk inside to pick our preschooler up, and we see our favorite substitute teacher, who always makes Leo feel grown-up and important. We find Daniel playing hangman with his teacher and another friend. Leo asks for a turn with the hangman board and picks the hardest word he can think of—“would”—which none of us guess.



On the drive home, Daniel says, “Mama, I know what a gentleman is now.”

“You do?”

“A gentleman is someone who lets a lady go first,” he said. “And he’s nice to a lady.”

And here I thought they were going to learn the color brown.

Back at home, we have leftovers for dinner—my favorite. We talk about soldiers and war and John asks questions about World War II. Leo and Daniel love being quizzed at dinnertime.

At one point I start telling a story of the Silverware Monster who creeps up behind children who don’t use their forks and spoons, but Daniel is so upset he is climbing into his father’s lap, so we go back to discussing war, which is apparently less frightening.



After dessert (Halloween candy) the boys try on the blindfold for our pin the Pokeball onto some Pokemon character game, and they stumble around the house. Somehow they do this with ease, so I think it is probably a very poor blindfold.

Then they want to help me wrap the prizes for “Pass the Present,” which we will play at Leo’s party on Saturday. Each prize has to be wrapped many, many times, and then the children will unwrap it layer by layer as they sit in a circle, so we will keep wrapping through the week. Everyone except one guest can come, and Leo is thrilled.



At bedtime I hear two voices yelling not to come in the bathroom, which means that minutes later I am invited in so I can be astounded at their clean teeth. Then we read a story about the Fantastic Four and The Bike Lesson, which is one of the best Berenstain Bears books ever.

We argue about who had the giant stuffed Pikachu in bed last night, and then it’s lights out and our sons fall immediately asleep. I can’t wait to see what tomorrow brings.



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Catholic Review

Catholic Review

The Catholic Review is the official publication of the Archdiocese of Baltimore.