Snapshots, here and there


I have such beautiful photos from our time at my brother and sister-in-law's farm this weekend.  You'd never guess there were swarms of mosquitos, which is the beauty of photographs. They transport you somewhere else without physical immersion, and that is also their downside, I suppose, too. You're there, but not there.

We were there.


And now we're not.

I'm spending these last few days before school's out working rather frantically to organize myself for the summer. I've got a long list of must-does and want-to-does and due dates. Posting to the blog is a want-to-do. I've decided to do it even though it means not neglecting a must-do. Even though it will be done in a rush before I need to meet the school bus.


Snapshot: yesterday, 8:35PM. Home.

I pull into the driveway with AppleApple. We climb out of vehicle, her loaded with soccer gear, me with rain gear and computer. Dogs at the door barking frantically. "Knock," I direct her, searching for keys. "Why am I knocking?" "Your brother should be home from his party. He's here."

Van pulls into driveway. Kevin and Fooey and CJ emerge from friends' vehicle, Kevin loaded with soccer gear, Fooey with soccer gear, CJ with school backpack.

Brother opens door. Frantic barking. "Someone let the dogs outside!" More frantic barking. "Not out the front door!"

Pile of wet soccer cleats, socks, and shin pads blocks front hall, along with school backpacks. I stumble in. Fooey reports on game. CJ reports on something I can't take in. Everyone hungry. "How was the pool party?" I want to know. "Was it rained out?"

AppleApple and I sit down to eat cold supper. Fooey reads out loud from her report card; coincidentally it is the section on reading. I prevent AppleApple from pointing out the irony, as Fooey struggles with the big words. CJ opens his report card, stacks pieces of paper beside my plate, moans that Fooey is taking too long. Kevin emerges from dragging soccer balls to basement, makes CJ a bedtime snack. I interrupt Fooey to summarize CJ's report card out loud. Fooey complains. I read part of her report card out loud. She gets to work filling out her section of the report card.

I clear food off table. Kevin starts school lunches.

Fooey and CJ argue in the bathroom over who gets to brush teeth first. I try to gather up everyone's loose bits of report cards and pile them together. Haul up laundry basket from basement. Wipe down table. Pick CJ up. Wait while CJ updates Kevin on the outcomes of recess soccer games; too much detail. Arm muscles fading. Carry CJ, still reporting on recess soccer games, upstairs. Tuck CJ in. Try to convince CJ to stop talking. Point out time: good grief, it's 9:27! Retreat. Return. Retreat.

Tuck in Fooey.

Invite son downstairs to report further on pool party and open report card. Son comes down. Report card scrutinized. Questions about party asked. Start folding laundry on the dining-room table. "Is that all the questions?" "I might have a few more …" "If that's all the questions, I'm going upstairs." Forget to remind him to brush his teeth.

Notice AppleApple on couch, doing email. "Are you still up? Aren't you swimming in the morning?" "Am I?" "I'll check with your coaches." Email coaches. Coach confirms practice. Child goes to bed.

"How many days of laundry is this? Look at this basket. It's not even half-empty." Despairingly observe it's after 10PM.

Kevin doing dishes.

Discussion of … soccer, news items, report cards, flotsam and jetsam.

Laundry folded. Remember there's another load in the drier. Decide to forget I've remembered. Set alarm for 5AM. Don't decide to forget to comment on and sign report cards; just forget. The dogs are still up. The dishes are done. And there's still time to read in bed.