Wednesday, 28 January 2015

Weather Glass

Years ago, pre-kids, I bought my husband a weather glass (otherwise know as Goethe's Device) for Christmas.

It was just one step up from a gag gift, an old timey way of measuring barometric pressure.

We had recently moved to the countryside at the time and we
were still under the delusion that we could hack rural living.

It turns out, despite its fragility, it has endured, the weather glass, not us living in the country. Rain or shine, commute or no commute, it turns out we have a hard time hacking urban living as well.

Now the kids squeal with glee when they notice that the blue food coloured water has started to rise up through its narrow beak.

Storm day!  It doesn't matter if the weather glass is in fact predicting a lot of rain, the kids instantly start cooking up ways to spend a potential snow day.  Hot chocolate, sledding, crafts, playing school, tv, making slides....it is all possible.  It is our crystal ball.

Urban/rural? No matter.
Yesterday, we all hit the jackpot.





Sunday, 25 January 2015

Crying Debt

As a child, I went out of my way to hide my tears.  I hated (still do to some extent) crying in front of other people, including my parents.

My son does not feel this way about crying.  Crying for him, up until now, has been just another way of talking, an expression, a necessity, an activity that flows into and out of other activities.

I have marvelled at his openness.

The other day he fell on a patch of ice in the school yard and bumped his head.

When I saw him at the end of the day, I asked about it.

"I fell. It hurt."

Were you upset? (i.e. did you cry?)

"No, I wanted to, but someone said I shouldn't because then I would be a crybaby."

Something inside me sunk a little.

I have heard many men say that the last time they cried was when they were 7.

The last time I cried was earlier this morning when I was watching Last Tango in Halifax (great show!)

As reluctant as I was to cry in front of others as a child, now I participate in what I like to call "maintenance crying". Every once in a while, I cry, like I sweat, to let out a little excess frustration, feelings, whatever.

My son continued..."when we get home, can I cry then?  I DID fall, I think I do need to cry."

I realized that maybe my son was being pressured to shut off the pathway to maintenance crying and
was about to accumulate a crying debt.

In his question, I heard a hint of alarm.

Are all these times I am not permitted to cry going to add up?
I am owed a cry, don't you think?

Sunday, 18 January 2015

Back to square one.

Winter feels like returning to me.
Summer feels like going.
How about you?

Sunday, 11 January 2015

Saturday, 10 January 2015

Snowbank blanket


He skated on every pool of water.  We looked up, we looked down. We played a series of games waiting for a Minecraft reservation.

The thing about winter is that the cold and the crusty snowbanks block out extraneous noise, the tiles of bananarama line up into place, clicking against the salted floor  The Jenga blocks clack against the surface of the table top.  The snow scrunches between our boots and the sidewalk.

We are impervious to other chatter that deafens us all week.


Monday, 29 December 2014

Binder Clause

My kids got more than enough toys with batteries and shiny paper the other day.
It was overwhelming and memory making and all that, but one gift stood out.
My husband gave my son a binder.
No, no you read that right. A binder.
He has just started to write and draw in earnest and he thought he would get a kick out of having his own binder.  Up until now, he's just been an idea boy, now he can put that stuff on paper.  He's thrilled to have these new skills.

I have seen him use the binder more than any other gift he received.

Last night I fell asleep on the couch by the light of the tree.  My son busily wrote and drew in his binder while I slept.  When I woke up I was half buried in snow flakes, drawings of cubes (which he had been practising all day) and notes.

One note read, my dads moms dads dad.

Some things you really have to figure out on paper.

Sunday, 28 December 2014

I have a cabinet

Time off from school inevitably leads to a camping night in the living room. It is bound to happen. Tonight, my son is sleeping in his "cabinet" by the woods (Christmas tree).

Next to the cabinet in the woods is a quaint little karaoke cafe that serves wine late and hosts Apples to Apples Junior and Crazy 8s tournaments.

Under the table where we play a child is now sleeping under a tent made with bedding.

I love this little village that gets erected during Christmas vacation. It gets incorporated only after a couple of days of boredom undoes the glue of regular play.