I'm still not entirely in the single-mom groove, but I'm not complaining: the number one main thing I can do for Laura is to put her brother at her side worry-free during this life-changing event. Fortunately, she's recovering better than expected from such a major surgery, and might even move out of the ICU by Monday. That's terrific news. Meantime, I'm encouraging Dave to stay there as long as she needs.
Kids are amazing. Nothing else so demonstrates how life goes on.
Today that included a T-ball game, despite the blustery, threatening weather. During pre-game practice, it looked like Julian's game would get rained out, but after a brief wait under a breezeway after practice, the coaches decided to play one inning. Then the wind died down and the weather became just chilly, but not unpleasant.
Katrina was high-maintenance during the game -- happy, mostly, aside from one big tantrum, but it was work keeping her happy.
Gabriel stayed at home during the game, getting some much-needed downtime, though I was keenly aware of Tonya's warning that age 12 is the minimum legal age to leave children home alone.
I'd told Gabriel we'd be home by 12:30 or so, but we ran some unexpected errands after Julian's game -- including a step into a the timewarp known as Blockbuster Video. This meant that we got home later than I'd said, and Gabriel immediately said, "Why didn't you call?" Fair question. I will next time if I'm so much as 2 minutes later than I thought.
He was quickly appeased with a hero sandwich from Subway, and the promise of a baseball movie after room cleanup. It wasn't raining, but it still wasn't a pleasant afternoon -- just as well, since our landscaping is mid-project and not at all suitable for playing outside. We watched "Bad News Bears" (the original of course), with a few interruptions during impossible noisy Katrina tantrums. Not unexpected after a sleepover last night, but still annoying. I'm amazed how good-natured the boys are about stopping the movie and leaving the TV room so she has no audience for her outrage. I hate that we have to do that, but it's the fastest way to get back to it.
After the movie, I was able to do some cleanup and make dinner with unusual ease. Katrina sure was quiet. It's one of those things that I don't dare check as to the source of the peace, lest I disrupt it, but eventually I do have to check. And sure enough, she'd found something to keep her busy: a pair of scissors and a piece of paper. What was left of it.
Five minutes of cleaning up teeny pieces of paper all over the place was quite worth the half an hour's worth of peace.
Today's other big news is Gabriel losing his second upper front tooth. And the Tooth Fairy is fresh out of dollar bills.
Being out of cash was due in part to one of the remarkable things about living in Northern California. It's not uncommon to see a (usually) young man of apparently Hispanic descent standing on a street corner, selling boxes of strawberries. Today we passed one such man on our way into Blockbuster, and Julian right away piped up, "I love strawberries!" But did we really need a box containing 6 of those little green baskets you buy one at a time at the grocery store for $2.99 (in season) ? That's a lot of strawberries.
I asked the guy where they came from and when they'd been picked, and he said he got up early this morning and picked them himself, in Salinas. I admired the way he'd arranged them, with all the strawberry tips pointing in one direction, making for an irresistible presentation. When he said a single box was only $7, I bit, and bought. And used up all my handy small bills in the process.
But what a boon. These strawberries were amazing -- fat, juicy, sweet, even crisp. The boys plowed through the ones I washed and roughly cut (Gabriel's front tooth was so wiggly he couldn't bite into anything) and kept asking for more before I could sit down for lunch myself. They ate almost half the box -- a box labelled "12 dry pints" -- at lunch alone. Katrina had a huge bowlful too. Really, these strawberries, and how greedily the kids consumed them -- are worth these paragraphs. And is one of the things -- like outdoor baseball in April -- that makes living here worth it.