This weekend was a study in inertia. Objects in motion tend to stay in motion. Objects at rest tend to be cranky.
Saturday didn’t start well. There was a serious bout of crankiness going through the house, and we kept reinfecting each other, like some nasty virus. The weather was gorgeous outside, but we just couldn’t shake the storm clouds. It was a busy day, which was probably part of it. We tried Grey on a piano lesson (we’re trying to figure out which activities will be fun for our FIVE YEAR OLD — I still can’t get over that). Thane was rather nightmarish during the lesson. I’d planned on getting him out of the way, but (confession time) my kryptonite is getting up in the morning, so I wasn’t ready to whisk him away. Halfway through I took him on a walk to the library to return all but one of the books we’d taken out a fortnight ago.
Grey and Adam did aikido, and Grey even entertained himself during the older kids’ session. I put Thane down for a nap, and in a complete departure from form, he wouldn’t go. Once I finally got him down, I mowed the lawn & then hand-scrubbed the back fence, which was moldy. (Digression: I’d bought one of those power washer attachments for this. I tried it out. After about 20 minutes, it became clear this was no panacea. I was compiling a complicated fence-cleaning plan including special fence-cleaning chemicals and a REAL pressure washer when it occurred to me that maybe I could just wipe it off. A dish scrubber and biodegradeable dish soap did the job with admirable alacrity. It was touch and go whether I had that much common sense, though.)
But Thane woke up after only about half an hour’s nap (he needs more like 2.5 hours). The stormclouds still thundered. Through sheer force of will, I got clothes and shoes on everyone, packed some snacks, and loaded everyone into the car.
The clouds began to break.
We got to the Middlesex Fells reservation and started hiking.
There was laughter.
We walked from dim darkness to golden autumnal twilight, running and singing and laughing and chasing each other. We watched our sons climb a big hill together and hit things with sticks. We found mushrooms. We at chocolate at the top of a hill, surrounded by pines, with golden glimmers of sunset water in the distance. We sang “Old MacDonald Had a Farm”.
The day was saved.
Taking the lesson of it, this morning we skipped church. (Note: I really like church, but I was having trouble figuring out how to fit apple picking in this fall. This was my solution.) We drove out to the hinterlands of New Hampshire (ok ok… right across the Massachusetts border, but in an obscure spot). We got lost in a corn maze, admired goats (or as Thane called them, elephants), rode a hayride tractor (Thane refused to get off so he and I did it twice), ate our weight in apples, rough-housed in the grass and selected two very fine pumpkins. Then we bought and ate some apple crisp. The over-long drive home, windows down, singing to Peter Paul & Mary was as good as mistakes of over-reaching come.
I have to go to work on Columbus Day. I’ll be bringing the boys to Abuela’s. Grey didn’t “count down” to his birthday, but he is to this daycare day. With a weekend as rich and joyful as this, though, I don’t mind working.