Steve is no stranger to the emergency room. He has been there many times for various reasons with varying degrees of severity. I get to tag along on these trips, so I am pretty much an expert at emergency room procedures and protocol. The way the ER works is that you are seen by a doctor according to the severity of your condition, not necessarily by time of arrival. If you are having chest pains or squirting blood, chances are you'll go right in. It's like having a fast pass at Disneyland.
When Steve goes to the ER he usually has a fast pass.
Just for the record, Steve does not enjoy his trips to the ER (or the doctor, for that matter) and he tries to resist going. He rarely thinks that whatever is wrong with him rates an ER visit. (one time he took a cleat to the head in a soccer game; huge gash in his skull, blood everywhere, and he mentions casually that he might need to go to the ER) Last night when he came home from soccer he says he's in pain and is thinking about going to the ER. If he's even thinking about it that means he really needs to go. When the kids were younger it was much harder to make a late night ER run, we either had to find someone to watch them or take them with us. They've spent several nights in the waiting room, it's not fun. Now that they're older and can hold down the fort by themselves, Steve and I get to go to the hospital alone. It's almost like a date.
We got to the hospital just as two ambulances were unloading patients, in the waiting room among all the various sick people was a guy covered in blood with gauze around his head and a toddler with a partially severed finger. Steve was there because his shoulder was separated.
No fast pass for us.
As we waited, and waited, Steve started getting impatient and I think he was missing the good old days of pulmonary embolisms and head wounds that always got him sent to the head of the line.
Albeit slowly, the healthcare system worked and Steve's separated shoulder will be just fine.
There's a strange phenomenon happening around here this year.
Neither one of the kids is playing a fall sport, so for the first time since Dagny was 5 we aren't getting up early on Saturday mornings to rush off to soccer or football. We actually have free time on Saturday.
It's very disconcerting.
It seems like one day of the weekend has always been devoted to kid's sports. Now that we are without them it's like the week suddenly has 8 days. The situation is very foreign to us and we hardly know what to do with ourselves.
Last week Dane comes in on Saturday morning and announces that he'd like to spend the day doing something fun. I ask what he has in mind, but he's got no specific plans. I jokingly say, "Hey, miniature golfing is fun, let's do that" He didn't catch my sarcasm and agreed that miniature golfing is indeed fun, and that putting a ball around obstacles and through windmills would be an enjoyable way to spend the day. Before I could explain the whole sarcasm thing Dane had already talked Steve into going. That Dane, he's a crafty one.
Dagny was buried under a mountain of homework so she couldn't come with us. It was sad that she missed out on all the fun. And there was fun, lot's of it. (even though I didn't win. Really, I'm not bitter at all)
I've had something bugging me for a very long time but until this weekend it hadn't made it's way to the top of the to-do list.
I'm talking about this
That is our gigantic pile of remote controls. There are a lot of them, aren't there? The crazy thing is that we use every single one. Ever since we had our theater system installed we have been meaning to get a universal remote and replace the many remotes with just one. That was 3 years ago, about time we took care of this, don't you think?
With our purchase of the universal remote at Best Buy we had the option of having their Geek Squad come over and program it. (for an extra $150) I laughed at them, I don't need their Geek Squad, I married the Geek Squad.
Dane had a great idea today, he thought it would be fun to ride our bikes down to the park and have a picnic. He wanted to bring his books along and do his schoolwork at the park and make an afternoon out of it. One of my favorite things about homeschooling is the freedom to take our show on the road. Dane wants to do his learning outside? I'm all for it.
We pack up the schoolwork, make a yummy lunch, (we even baked cookies!) and then I sent Dane out to get the bikes ready. Easier said than done, both our bikes have flat tires. No problem, we can fix that, we get out the tire pump and get to work. Half an hour later we still have 4 flat tires. I was getting frustrated and we were going nowhere so it was time to call in the professional. That would be Steve. He figured out that there was something wrong with the pump, fixed it, then pumped the tires. This took another half and hour and by then Dane and I are starving but glad that we were finally on our way.
We ride off and it's glorious. That lasts for about 5 minutes before my tire blows out.
What did we have to show for our planning and hard work? Not a bike ride on a beautiful September day, not a picnic in the park, not school lessons in the great outdoors. All we had was our utter failure. Apparently when Dane and I are faced with failure we laugh. We laughed as we walked back home, we laughed as we unpacked our picnic and ate it at the kitchen table.
There are days when things just don't go as planned.
Sometimes life affords you an experience that is so singular you have to marvel at it's perfection. I had that experience while I was walking through the Birth of Impressionism exhibit at the de Young Museum. It was profoundly moving to be in the same room as some of those paintings. Things I had only ever seen in reproduction were right there in front of me; I could see the true depth of color, notice every brushstroke, look from every angle. I think that I could have happily stayed there all day.
As I was walking through the galleries I caught glimpses of Dagny and Dane as they made their own ways through the exhibit. Seeing them react to the art took my already amazing experience and made it perfect. As their teacher, it was immensely gratifying to see that all the years of studying art had prepared them to understand what they were seeing. As their mother, I was very pleased that they appreciated what they were seeing.
I saw things I liked, some things that I didn't, (I will admit to not being a fan of Whistler's Mother. I know it's an important work of art, I'm glad I saw it in person, it just doesn't do it for me) there were things I was surprised by and things that humbled me. All of that and I didn't even have to buy a plane ticket to Paris.
Obviously no photography permitted in the exhibit, but I did find this video of some of the things we saw.