homestead happenings: cherish
Despite the fussing baby boy in the library yesterday who I badly wanted to scoop up and snuggle (you go ahead and get some work done, I’d say to his father who was on his laptop, I’ll be in the fiction stacks with Mr. Gummy Smiles; or maybe I’ll just make a sign: will re-lactate for crying babies)…despite that precious baby, whose very smell ripened an ovarian follicle or two of mine, I like these ages my kids are at.
Dan set up a fort for the kids in the backyard, the kind you could stand up in only if you were born say, after 2007. And it’s like someone plopped down Disneyland—the tarp and PVC version—in our yard because the kids head out there at 7:00am like commuters with their briefcases full of legos and beads.
Sometimes all they need for hours is a plate of snacks strategically pushed under the fort, while I putter around the garden feeling insanely lucky and happy to hear their chatter (Col: look at the triple decker bus I made! Rose: well I found the legos for the triple decker bus, so I sort of made it too, Coley); insanely lucky and happy to be together, but not y’know, so together that I can’t pull a few weeds with my free hand.
Inevitably, the kids pack up their Fort Independence briefcases and return to their lighthouse of comfort, which is me. And they’re just in time, because by then I’ve had enough time with the tomatoes and the luxury of following my own thoughts and want nothing more than their enormous small bodies to return to me.
A couple weeks ago Rose’s preschool held their annual “spring sing,” which consists of 40 or so kids singing their tirelessly rehearsed songs to the beautiful backdrop of their own hand-painted scenery. It’s always a festival of sentimental tears and laughs (the nose-picking kids, the Joe Cocker-types singing like it hurts). When all those gorgeous children sang Simon and Garfunkel’s 59th St Bridge Song (Feeling Groovy), so sincerely, so earnestly—let the morning time drop all its petals on me, life I love you, all is groovy—tears pricked the corners of my eyes and a voice in my head said: cherish this, cherish this, cherish their childhood.
I can feel summer revving up, this brief and magical time that’s like a placeholder in my children’s lives, marking days of river play, camping, and marveling over ladybugs. If it had a brand name, this summertime, we’d call it something like: the best of childhood. Something to cherish, indeed.
On the homestead:
:: The root cellar is 1/3 of the way dug. Only 5 more feet to go! Oy. Dan is currently working with the antlers, which will be the roof (covered with juniper bark and mud) of the root cellar, the antler kiva root cellar. And as our friend Ben says, “leave it to Dan to choose the most challenging building material to work with.” Antlers!
Who knew a big pit and attendant dirt pile would so increase the quality of a 7-year old’s life?
:: Our tomato plants outgrew the greenhouse,
And are out in the real world now (it’s like sending your kids to kindergarten!)
Okay, not quite the real world yet.
:: What are they doing?
Holding hands through the holes in a picnic table, obviously.
:: Did you get to see the annular eclipse on Sunday? We drove out to Chimney Rock Archeological Area to witness astronomical history. The kids, in their typical way, found it both spectacular (“it’s like a mouse is taking a bite out of a cheese wheel!”) and ordinary (“let’s go catch lizards now, Rose.”)
Would you call me superficial if while enjoying the eclipse, I also thoroughly enjoyed Rose’s baby chins?
:: The true face of homeschooling.
I freaking love it.
Hoping you too are cherishing these days.
ps: winner of Use Your Words book announced on original post. Keep those essays coming!