Friday, June 23, 2006

6/23/06 Gabriel and Julian's heat wave

It's been HOT the past few days! Really unusually hot, so much so that I close all the doors and windows downstairs during the day, then open them all up at night. Usually it's the other way around. It still cools off at night, but it's been warm enough in the evenings to stand outside comfortable in tank top and shorts.

Last Tuesday (June 19) we didn't have swim class, so I took the boys to the Cupertino fountains to cool off. Even though we'd been to the much louder and more intimidating Los Gatos fountains two days before, Julian would still have nothing to do with them. I don't know what happened, he liked fountains last year!
Gabriel, on the other hand, played in them nonstop, having a fabulous time. Gina was his usual cohort, but he also played with Erin and another boy we don't know, who showed him how to sit on the fountain and direct the water with his legs, which he found hilarious.

Lucky me, I got to sit in the shade with a reticent Julian and chat with my Mom friends, though Julian did relax later when one of my friends rolled a ball to him. But it was way too hot to be running after a ball, and within minutes, he was all flushed.
Even after stopping for a few bites of lunch, Gabriel went back out to play in the water. Oddly, in the pool, lately Gabriel has been pooping out before Julian, but not in fountains -- especially when Julian won't go near them. What is his deal?!

Thursday the 22nd, I had a horrible morning, I was unrecoverably exhausted and just couldn't function. Dave's been out of town, so I've had to get up at 6:30am with Julian, and it's killing me -- I HATE being up early, it ruins my day. I stumbled through dressing and breakfast for the boys, falling asleep with every blink of my eyes, and tried to put my head down sitting on a chair, but I got interrupted again and again and again. No surprise; two little boys need constant intervention. It was so frustrating that just 20 minutes was all I needed to take the edge off. And I'd easily have had that if I had just Gabriel or Julian, but as usual, both together means even a few seconds to run upstairs to rotate laundry is risky.

I finally resorted to something I've never done once: putting on a video just so I could rest. But I felt so bad about that that I couldn't sleep! I got up and saw them zoned out on the couch, on a hot summer morning, and I felt terrible about how I'd been -- grumpy, impatient, shouting, trying to ignore them. I was finally awake, so I got a whole bunch of things together, then took them to the Y where I did a little weights work and swam, and they had lunch.

Then I took them to our local pool to cool off, and that was so much fun. I was delighted to discover that Julian can stand up in the shallow end of the pool, which meant I didn't have to hold him the whole time or pull him out of over-his-head water every 5 seconds. This made it much more fun for me; I could splash around and play with them, go underwater and chase them and relax a lot more. Gabriel kept practicing swimming back and forth between the steps and the shallow end, but he wanted to get out much sooner than Julian did. In fact, I was so busy playing with them that I didn't get any pictures -- odd for me!

That night, what a treat for me: I asked Peggy to come over and take care of the boys while I attended my last skating class (sniff!). The ice rink was a wonderful place to be on such a hot day. And I almost sort-of got some momentum on doing back crossovers, which had been my main goal. I really want to find a way to keep skating and keep learning. Maybe the key is Peggy, actually: she was competitive as a teenager and practiced every day, and the rink I've been going to even asked her to teach. So who knows, maybe we can go to skating outings and I can ask her to help me with the baby and give me some pointers! Of course, she'll have her hands full with her own baby, due in August, though Peggy is never rattled by multiple children or babies, not like me.

But now, it's Friday night, and I have less than 24 hours to gather a zillion odds and ends for our trip tomorrow. The boys are really excited about going on an airplane (though Julian says he wants to go on a helicopter instead), and I will be too once I'm ready!

Sunday, June 18, 2006

6/18/06 Gabriel and Julian's Father's Day

Happy Father's Day!

Actually, I got the first treat: sleeping until **10:20** AM! More proof that you can never, ever turn a true night person into a morning person. Plus I'm shaking off days in a row of exceptionally poor sleep, especially last Friday when I had one of the worst stomach days I've had in weeks. I finally took some codeine late in the day, and it mercifully made me groggy until well into Saturday. Thanks for the sleep boost, Dad.

After I finally got up this morning, I kicked into gear and made a big bang-up breakfast. Then we gave Dave his Father's Day presents, which were a scrapbook page I made of his Rallycross weekend, and a pair of studio photos of me and the boys wearing their father's shirt, for his office. (Dave wore this blue plaid shirt the day Gabriel was born, then put it on for Julian's birth, and wears it on their birthdays.) He didn't say much, but I think he liked it.

Then, of course, the best Father's Day present: some time off! It's been hot this weekend, so I took the boys to the fountains in Los Gatos.

Last year, it took some coaxing to get Julian into the water spurts, when he had just barely started walking. This year, he wouldn't go near them! He was quite content to sit in the shade and watch all the other kids, including many much younger than he is, zoom through the fountains. (Note the ever-present crossed feet: am I the only one who thinks this habit is relentlessly adorable?)
Gabriel has never had any issues with water and wasted no time running like mad through the fountains and getting soaking wet. I had fun chasing him around and going through myself too, once again one of the very few grownups willing to get wet (odd since it really has been hot today!).

Gabriel got cold after a while and then was content to sit wrapped in a towel and have an apple snack with his timid brother.

Driving to Los Gatos was the first test run of having the boys sit right next to each other in carseats. This could be the downfall of our plan to keep the Outback: fighting. They did start in at one point, but I managed to control it with very stern and very sincere warnings. It seems to help if I follow it up with a very horrified-sounding voice about how dangerous it is to fight while I'm driving. Certainly Julian takes it seriously.

I remember Dad (my Dad) turning around to whack me on the head while he was driving when I was a kid, and those visions come to mind when I think about how mad I'll get if they fight (mostly, Gabriel hurting Julian while he's helpless). But I also remember how much I hated that, and that mostly it made me resentful and not think at all about whatever offense I committed. I wonder what I did to deserve that; I know it wasn't from fighting (Ronan always sat next to me and I didn't physically fight with him much). Still, if there's one thing you learn from being a parent, it's that others never know the whole story, so I've learned to be a lot less judgmental of other parents. Even mine. Seems fitting on Father's Day!

Gabriel and Julian spent a lot of time with Dad this morning, helping him wash his car as I slept in. It's especially a big treat to get to hold the hose. Then when we got home from the fountains, Gabriel rushed to help Dave with yardwork (the boys absolutely love their time with Dad in the yard) while I coaxed a reluctant Julian upstairs for his nap. Then, guess what I did -- I took a nap! When I woke up, I found Gabriel and Dave snuggled up together on the couch, also napping. Nothing like a family-wide afternoon nap on Father's Day!