Sunday, September 27, 2009

Thinking deep thoughts, with a three-year-old around

My neighbor, an artist, once gave me a spiral-bound notebook. She said every morning, before she does anything else, she sits in a chair and writes in a notebook for about half an hour--whatever comes to her. It may be gibberish, it may make sense, she just writes. Her theory is that it loosens her creativity. It's a swell theory, but I always seem to be too busy in the morning, in a hurry to get my hair washed, the animals taken care of, coffee made, so I can settle at my computer, read the paper and read e-mails. Still after my post last night, three ideas came to my mind for future projects, and I decided I would try Susan's theory, arming myself with a legal pad and ball point pen.
Unfortunately, I barely had time to read the paper, straighten the house, do my yoga, and Jacob was here for the day. His mom was sponsoring "An Afternoon of Luxury" at her house, expecting 60 women. When I got the invitation, I said, "Honey, I just don't think I can do that." It would, after all, be all younger women, some of whom I'm very fond of, but more of whom I don't know. And I don't now have the budget for jewelry or a purse or any of the upscale items that would be available. So I tried to decline politely, but she said, "Of course you're not coming. You're keeping Jacob." So Jacob and I had a day together, and it's hard to think deep thoughts with a three-year-old around. Mostly I read, checked my email from time to time, etc., while he watched a DVD, built with blocks, searched for "bad guys" with his plastic rifle from Uncle Jamie, did a little drawing, and tried his hand at a puzzle--his version of working a puzzle is to dump all the pieces on the floor and walk away. For some reason, though I got obsessed with figuring out which of our many puzzles are intact and to my delight two are missing one or two pieces, one six pieces, and one probably 25 (I think I'll throw it away but it was a neat puzzle about Texas)--these are all those big-piece puzzles for little kids. Several are intact, and I kept Jacob away from them, though as he watched me put one together, he kept saying, "Good job, Juju!" I did one Disney puzzle, the one missing six pieces, that seemed to take me forever. I almost called to Frisco for help from Edie--she has always been terrific at putting puzzles together. Other times Jacob would tell me, "Go read your papers," so I read snatches and piece of Simmer Down by Jessica Conant-Park. I think poor Jacob got a little bored--at one point, he asked, "Will you go outside with me?" Well, I can't. In the back, where it's fenced, there's 55 lbs. of over-enthusiastic dog who loves him but would knock him down--and besides, who knows where poop lurks. I hadn't gotten out to clean up today. In the front, there's no fence and a busy street, and I'm afraid Mr. Mischievous Jacob will get away from me. So on a lovely late-summer day, we were both housebound. We did have good naps--Jacob slept hard for 2-1/2 hours and woke up kind of dazed.
I had made a meatloaf yesterday and had it all ready to pop in the oven with baking potatoes. Add a salad and that was dinner for Jacob, Christian and me, and I sent some home for Jordan, though Christian forgot it. I had to call him, and he came back for it.
Now I'm tired, the kind of tired that comes from not having really done much all day. And I have a list of household chores for tomorrow. But it was a nice day.

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