After a very difficult day yesterday, I was ready for a better one today. But it couldn't have started worse (worsely? worst? English, please!): Katrina, awake and crying furiously at 5:45am. I was going to say crying pitifully, but her cries are rarely pitiful, usually more forceful and insistent, like her. She cried nonstop as I got myself and her dressed and got ready to go. In a frustrated fog, I hadn't yet had a chance to think straight when Gabriel said, "Maybe her ear hurts."
Bingo. As I drove Katrina to Melissa's, I formed a plan: I'd call the pediatricians when they opened and take her there at noon, timed after her nap but in time to pick Gabriel up from school. Sure enough, raging double ear infection. The doc said the ears were bright red and swollen inside, nothing marginal about this one. Prescription, advice, and we were on our way.
My plan had been to leave work early and pick Gabriel up from school today anyway, since I had an architect meeting today at 4pm. I hadn't planned on an emotional crisis yesterday or Katrina's ear infection today, so picking Gabriel up from school today couldn't have been better timed.
The only thing that didn't work was that some guy walked RIGHT by as I was poised to take a photo of Gabriel right as he was released from class!
It felt like I'd returned to paradise, being at the school again. So lively, so colorful, so many joyful little people. Why didn't I see it this way before?
I was glad that Katrina held out long enough to pick up Gabriel, since he really, really needed to work on homework and his Cultural Poster, both due tomorrow.
(I actually think the Cultural Poster was too much work, too large a project across too much time for kindergartners, especially on top of regular homework. And I say that as a parent who has far less prodding to do than most. But even as conscientious as he is, this task in particular was too much. I can't imagine what the parents who were asking about how to motivate their kids to do regular homework make this happen.)
I helped him a great deal with it, giving him ideas and writing things down for him to spell, talking to him about it, but I didn't touch the poster itself. He did all the drawing, tracing, coloring, writing, gluing, and he "wrote" much of the content too. I'm actually sort of proud of how...well, kidlike it looks. I suspect a lot of other posters in his class will come in a whole lot neater. We managed to squeeze in two runthroughs of his "presentation" for it. I can't imagine how we'd have finished this if it hadn't happened that he'd be home early from school today.
Gabriel today that he was the only one in his class doing Italy. Later he also said that "SO MANY!" kids in his class were doing India. He said the teacher called on each kid to ask what country they were doing. Two were doing Africa.
Though Gabriel was very helpful keeping Katrina entertained while I met with our architect, he moved in and out of pest mode a lot today. Katrina was in much better shape this afternoon after a nap and some children's Motrin and her first dose of antibiotic, but she was still a handful. The child bright spot today came from a surprising source: a cooperative, sweet, delightful Julian. He's the oddball around here, as his brother and sister are more similar to each other than he is to either of them, but he corners the market on charm.
I was cheered considerably by my meeting with our fabulous architect, who once again solved a problem in 5 minutes that I haven't been able to figure out for years. This time, it's for the upstairs bathroom, which only has a bath and no shower. Not a problem now, but it won't be long before the kids will want showers instead of baths. So now, we have a Plan for the upstairs bathroom that includes a shower, a bath, a storage cabinet, and a much more sensible place for the toilet. (We had a nice chuckle as we made sure that the toilet placement would work for those who use them standing up and facing them, something easy for short women to forget!)
We also tightened up some details in the kitchen and agreed that she'd help us with the interior design as well. I'm thrilled. It makes me look forward again to remodeling, which isn't easy to look forward to. I can't WAIT!
Dave and I are both steamrollered today from a much-too-early morning and an overall tough week. Only the bare minimum is getting done tonight, and then it's time for us to collapse to bed. I say this more from the heart than I ever have : thank God tomorrow is Friday.