One of the things that I love about Carlos is his spontaneity. Inside, I am a control freak. Parenting is helping to ameliorate that tendency, but I get really panicky if things are not planned out. Even if I don't come close to following the plans, having them there helps me feel safe. Today, though, was a wonderful and unscripted day.
First, we got up early while the older two slept in and had a very calm and quiet morning. Then, we had a girls' coffee date with my sister, mom and grandma. Ariana asked to please join us. I thought about saying no, because it has literally been weeks since I've been anywhere without at least one of the kidlets. I definitely like my alone time, and haven't had any this month. On the other hand, I could tell that she was needing some focused time, too. I also know from experience that taking breaks at certain times from the kids doesn't always recharge me--often I just wind up feeling disconnected and impatient when I get back. It is a weird balance. I decided to let her come, and was very glad. We both had a great time.
After we got back and I nursed Elena, I remembered that our library books were due on the holiday, so I decided to drop them off, and on the spur of the moment suggested that Joelito and Ariana tag along. They were both excited to join me--they love the library! We signed up for the summer reading program and chose several exciting new books. Amelia Bedelia is a definite favorite, as are books on sharks and anatomy, but this time we branched out into some Nancy Drew, and books on snakes, bees and cows. It was fun to watch the kids' enthusiasm for trying something new.
On the way back, we picked up a snack, and then noticed that the splash park was open and going full force. Of course, we didn't have swimsuits with us. I generally try to keep an extra change of clothes for each kid in the van, but had just cleaned it out and brought in most of the extras. When I weighed that against the fun we would have, it was found wanting, so we picnicked at the park and the kids played in the water for nearly an hour. It was beautifully sunny when we got there, but just as they got into hysterically mismatched dry clothes, it began to rain and lightning streaked the sky. The fragrance of the clover and rain was so strong and so lovely.
Our perfectly summery afternoon transformed into a cozy evening with a Bananas Foster cake, warm baths, snuggles and a good book. I tend to think that it went much better than any plan I had.