Roo returns to school this week and Tadpole goes back to school tomorrow. This was our last three-day summer weekend together, and we made the most of it.
On Friday we took a day trip to a water park. It was a fabulous day all the way around. The weather was perfect, and the place turned out to be great for our little guy. There was a huge pool where the water didn’t get deeper than three feet, and it was surrounded by slides that were just the right size for Tadpole. At one point Roo took a turn on the grown-up slides (which were fun but not amazing) while Tadpole and I went around and around the fast-moving “lazy river.” I sat in a tube with my little boy snuggled up on my lap, chatting about the color turquoise, whether or not we liked to go under the “waterfalls,” and the flavor he had picked for his snow-cone. That half-hour was one of the best parts of the day, but all of it was great. It certainly helped my enjoyment of the day that I was able to stay focused on how great it was to be with our little family of three without wasting time and energy on our TTC plans. I somehow managed to admire the cute babies that were everywhere without letting that send me into despair about our so-far-unsuccessful TTC attempts or long daydreams about what may or may not happen in the next few months.
The rest of the weekend has been good as well. Saturday was a lazy morning, followed by a trip to the Trolley Museum with Roo’s parents and Tad’s cousins. And then Roo and I went out on a very fun and much-needed date. We ate fancy food, giggled a lot, and attended a queer cabaret. It was lovely to talk about queer theory, discuss ways in which burlesque is and is not empowering to women, and laugh at silly songs about dating woes. Today Tad and I spent a long time at the fancy big playground near us and then went a volunteer-committment-related party while Roo worked on some artwork. And now I’ve cooked a big pot of stir-fry for dinners for the week and am getting ready to pack Tad’s lunch.
I have mixed feelings about returning to our school-year lives. I am very unexcited about packing little-boy lunches and waking up at 6:15 every weekday (and most weekends as well, since Tad’s internal clock tends to get set in its routine). I’m also a little nervous about Tad’s transition back to school. He is returning to the preschool he attended last year, and when he started there last fall there were tears and screaming at most drop-offs for at least the first month. We’re hoping that things will be more smooth this year, since it is now a familiar place. The school is fairly small so most of his classmates and teachers will be familiar faces. Tonight he was talking excitedly about which kids he might see, and reminding us that one of the perks of being a “Cuddly Koala” instead of a “Busy Bee” is the right to use the swing set. Fingers crossed that that attitude will continue!
For me there are some perks to having Tad back at school. I don’t enjoy trying to get Tad up and out the door by 7:15am, but it’s awfully nice to have a few minutes with the house to myself in the morning while I get myself ready for the day.
I’m also glad for Roo’s sake that Tadpole is going back to school. She and Tad have had some great adventures. They attended puppet shows and reptile displays at our local libraries, went stream-walking, and took trips to the zoo and the Fire Museum. There were plenty of mornings when I went to work feeling jealous of their fun plans. But I also spent plenty of evenings feeling guilty that I hadn’t been around to help out. It has not been an easy summer for Roo. Tadpole has been doing some serious limit-testing and lots of experimenting to see what consequences there will be for hitting, kicking, and general defiance. A combination of time-outs and a sticker chart have done wonders, but there were some rough weeks while we worked it out.
It has been particularly hard for Roo to deal with all of this without a break during the day. Tadpole had been taking naps only sporadically before the summer began, and once he wasn’t at school anymore he stopped taking them altogether. We tried some “quiet time in your room” instead, but with only limited success. He is a kid who has a lot of energy, and he would get bored and annoyed at being cooped up in his room. This would result in doing things like pulling every item off all of his shelves (his clothes, his books, his stuffed animals) and putting them in a giant pile in the middle of the room. Knowing that that kind of chaos was happening (and would have to be cleaned up later) didn’t make for much of a mid-day break for Roo. She tried taking him places to wear him out, but the crazy heat that we had for much of the summer made it hard, and there’s only so much of the mall playplace that one can take without going crazy.
Overall I think we’re all looking forward to the fall. Roo reminds me that she doesn’t like the title of this post since we have lots to look forward to. We have plans to go to a pumpkin patch with an LGBT parents Meet-Up group. Hopefully there will be cooler weather which will mean more bearable baking at home and more adventures outside. Our funky neighborhood fair happens in September and there are several bike events that we have looked into attending. There are new staff starting at my work, including two interns who I am looking forward to mentoring. I’ll still have Fridays with Tad and I’m working on a list of adventures we can have. And then there’s IUI #5 coming in September which will be its own brand of crazy adventure.