Meanwhile, in second grade...
Or--as it turns out to be the most exciting event I've photographed at Lee Olympics the past three years--the Tug-of-War Files. Put me on the sideline of a soccer or lacrosse game any day of the week, and I'll stand there quietly while my child and his/her teammates run up and down the field. Put me on the sideline of an intense tug-of-war match, however, and I'll be the loudest one out there. Unless Alex happens to be standing next to me...
P.S. Is it me, or does Catcher seem a little too relaxed for the level of intensity that's required in a serious game of tug-of-war?
And then we have our action shots...
One of the better ideas I've had, in my humble opinion, was covering our hideous refrigerator (pictured above) in chalkboard paint. The fridge is old, loud, rusted and the doors stick. There's also a weird spill/stain covering the bottom shelf, which I try to ignore every time I'm in there reaching for something, but buying a refrigerator isn't in the plans right now. Part of the reason is I want to wait until "Phase 2" of our renovation, when we tackle the kitchen, because I will probably change my mind 100 times before we get there. Or rather, I will definitely change my mind 100 times. I simply can't make a commitment to a refrigerator that may or may not fit the design scheme of my future kitchen. In the meantime, I needed and inexpensive fix because starting at that beige box was driving me insane!
It turns out that a simple coat (two actually) of chalkboard paint and the imagination of your children is all you need to spruce up the ugliest appliance in the house. I no longer shudder when I walk into the kitchen, and the sticking doors don't bother me quite as much as they used to. The weird spill still grosses me out, but it's on the bottom shelf, which I never use anyway, and I figure staying the course of ignoring it will eventually make it go away...right?
Somehow we made it 2/3 of the way into lacrosse season without my having watched a game. By some crazy stroke of luck, Alex was home the one Sunday in March and the one Sunday in April that Catcher had games an hour outside of Austin. Alex took Scout along on the first outing, and I stayed home with Tillie who was sick at the time. The second time around, the boys bonded doing boy things (like hitting each other with sticks) while the girls and I stayed home and bonded doing girl things (like reading quietly and acting otherwise civilized). Last weekend, however, it was a family affair as we trudged out to hill country for a Sunday fun-day of mini lacrosse.
I gave the girls pedicures when they got bored, and then I gave them snacks (mom bribe) so I could actually observe some of the action on the field. Catcher isn't the smallest guy out there this year (he's close), but he does have bright pink shoes so I can always spot him from the sideline.
Last week when a fellow second-grade mom and I found ourselves with nothing better to do on a Monday morning, we decided to crash our sons' field trip to Crowe's Nest Farm just outside of Austin. It was the best of both worlds: we weren't official chaperones, so we didn't have to come and go within the scheduling confines of the field trip, and we got to surprise our children (Catcher was excited to see me, despite the look on his face in the picture below).
My friend and I ditched the field trip just before lunch in favor of raw oysters at an East side hipster joint over sacked lunches on the farm, but it was funny how the conversation over bloody Marys (it was her birthday--we had to celebrate!) turned to "what was your favorite thing about the farm?" A conversation that I'm sure was mirrored on the picnic tables at Crowe's Nest. For the record, watching the farmer milk a cow was my favorite part. And the baby pig. And the llamas. Llamas are cute. The giant pig was pretty cool, too. Oh...I almost forgot about the turkeys...