Today was a day that I don't want to forgot. I woke in the middle of the night and decided it was a good idea to record it here. It's been a very long time and so much has happened but I'm going to let that go for now.
I have wanted to have a professional family photo taken for years and we made it happen this morning. I spent a silly amount of time over the past 5 days coordinating our outfits. I was pleasantly surprised that there were not any meltdowns pre-picture. Well, there were 2 potential meltdown but they were diverted with tenacity (read bribery) and some amount of luck.
I'll start with Sonna: Sonna enjoys having her hair curled. It only happens a few times a year - time crunch in the mornings - and she is the child who takes notice when I curl my hair or wear heels, which also happens a few times a year. This morning, as I was curling Sonna's hair, I noticed her smile of joyful anticipation quickly dissipated into a disgruntled look. She was not satisfied. It was more curly than she liked and she told me she wanted a ponytail rather than wearing her pretty golden hair in curls. I asked her once, selfishly, to please wear it down as I attempted to smooth out some of the curl with a wide barrel curling iron. She shook her head "No". So I said "I'll give you $2 if you wear it down". Sonna said "No". I said to my six year old who studied money at the end of her kindergarten year "I'll give you $2 and two quarters" and she said "Yes". So I bought my way with her hair for the family photograph. It is ironic how these things from my childhood come back to me in a fierce way. When I was 7 or 8 my mother put pink spongy curlers in my hair the night before our family photograph. She then put pigtails in my hair and shaped them into nice ringlets. To my dismay, one pigtail was shorter than the other. So I took matters into my own hands and wet one pigtail to even them out. You can imagine what happened; the too-curly pigtail was now nearly flat and too long. My poor mother. Maybe if she had paid me . . . (:
Mara is not a fan of dressing up. She communicated clearly that she was not going to wear a dress. She was kind to tell me this 7-10 days in advance of picture day. So I found her a skirt that I really liked and a white t-shirt with ruffles (pleasantly surprised she did not reject the shirt with a few ruffles). However, she told me she didn't like the skirt and wouldn't wear it. So last night I went to the mall and found a coordinating sundress - a long shot - but at least she would have a choice. Just before it was time to leave for family pictures, she voiced her dislike of the skirt again and, of course, the dress. To my surprise and delight, she wore the skirt anyways and never complained again! I could shout a little "hallelujah" even now, reflecting on this fact. Mara is newly 8 years old and is growing up in noticeable ways. She was wonderfully helpful throughout the photography session, corralling and encouraging Svea. The minute we walked in the door an hour and a half later, Mara took off the skirt and declared "I'm never wearing that skirt again". "Okay", I replied.
That afternoon, after some quiet time and a failed nap attempt for Svea, the task at hand was to get Mara her own library card. Her second grade teacher, Ms. Cooper, who will also be her third grade teacher (second grade loops to third grade at Wilshire Park Elementary), kindly made plans to meet with the class once a month during summertime. Tomorrow is her first library meet up and she is so excited. However, this afternoon, Mara was so tired. I told the girls we would walk to the library because it is a beautiful day, and because we live in a Village so we can walk, and because Jedd had the minivan and I didn't want to unload the cab of his truck just to drive 5 blocks. Mara melted upon hearing this news. It was not what she had in mind for the afternoon trip to the library. Sister Sonna quickly suggested to Mara, "You could ride in the Burley (behind the bike carriage for kids) with Svea and I can ride my scooter". Except she can't ride her scooter because she has a broken arm. Another story. Anyways, the three girls decided they could squeeze in the back. I was wishing I had my camera to capture the sight of a 2 1/2, 6 and 8 year old packed on top of each other but I left my phone in the minivan (If that sounds odd in future years, my phone is my camera, just to clarify for the sake of ever-changing technology). Side note: Perhaps part of the reason it was a day I wish to remember is also because I did leave my phone in the car and so I had no distractions and that is a wonderful thing these days. Anyways, Sonna was on one side, Mara on the other and Svea kind of on top of Mara. And no one complained or fell apart, not even Miss No-Nap Svea.
We were successful with our library card mission and then Mara suggested the Dairy Queen. I agreed under the condition that we order 4 mini-cones. Simplicity. And they agreed. So the summery day included ice cream which is always good. And it included cucumbers which are always good too.
This has been the rainiest Spring and longest awaited Summer I can remember. Our gardening efforts have been strong at some points and lacking at others. But I was feeling sad that we didn't plant any cucumbers. To my delight, Linder's gardening center had all their plants 50% off and I got my cucumber plants already a healthy 5 inches tall. And then I enjoyed some quiet, sunny time planting them, along with a pumpkin plant, in our beautiful backyard. Again, pictures to come.
The day ended with Mara's 7:00 soccer game. She has very dear friends from school on her team and I am enjoying getting to know their families. The gift of community . . .
That's enough for now. I was inclined to record this day because I was able to take in many moments and feel gratitude. Certainly not everyday is like that being the working mom of three little girls but this was a day to remember. I hope I'll be back soon.
I almost forgot! One of the biggest reasons this day was so good is that I felt buoyed by the love and support of my Mom and Dad who came to our house this morning to offer their helping hands for weeding flower beds, planting flowers, mowing the lawn, cleaning the garage, and more. Thank you, Mom and Dad.