Friday, July 15, 2016

It's a New Day

Bow to her father regarding the packed lunch he made her for summer camp:
"Nobody likes tomatoes, Daddy"

Daddy (BF): "But.  You ate tomatoes last night!"

Bow: Yes, but today is a new day.

Annual Wild Berry Blow Out

I kind of missed mulberry season this year.  Dog walks from this house, were we've lived since October, don't seem to lead under any accessible fruiting mulberry trees.  There are some inaccessible ones behind forbidding poison ivy along the long alley people here refer to as "The Lane."  There had been a great tree a block from the pool, but it has been cut down. I could have gone further out of my way to look, but instead I went to Vancouver, and now mulberry season is over.

 I have been extra vigilant about the wild cloud berries.  I didn't want to miss them too.  Yesterday, despite the "Code Red" heat which closed the Spanish language summer camp at lunchtime (que no vale), and the dentist appointment for Smiles, we went to [a location I cannot reveal because I am jealously hoarding berry bushes] and picked cloudberries from thorny branches hung like bedecked Christmas trees.  It was great.  Easy, fun, tasty and the bushes were even in the shade!

This morning we (Me, Voice, Smiles) presented Wisp and Bow with a heaped bowl of garnet colored juiciness to enjoy.  Wisp, seemingly always concerned that the adults in her life are trying to poison her with what they claim are "tasty"  "foods,"  attempted some preemptive buzzkill "I've HAD cloudberries before.  They AREN'T as good as raspberries."  Nonetheless, the four children enjoyed a finger-staining and rapid consumption of berries, and ate the whole crop.

I feel like I can rest easier now.  At least I didn't blow the cloud berry harvest . . .

Monday, July 11, 2016

Summer Adventures

1) Vancouver.

We went to visit my ailing-aging parents.  My father describes himself as "shrimping" with age.  He means "shrinking" but the curvature of his spine is so severe, and the three fingered hand . . . well.  He's righter than he knows.  My parents held themselves together for the entire visit: no falls, no disasters. It didn't rain once either.  Both weather and good health were very suspicious.

Now we are back and I phoned last night from Baltimore to discover that my mother is in hospital. Mostly, it seems, she is there because she was about to have her first bowel movement in 18 days and my father, with the benefit of past experiences of her montezuma-like evacuations, decided he just wasn't able to deal with the mess that was about to come.  So he called an ambulance, and now my mother is in hospital pooping.

2) Spanish Camp.

Voice and Smiles were looked after  by a wonderful Argentinian woman at a home-run daycare when they were babies, and she spoke only Spanish to her charges.  They were fluent at age 3.

At ages 7 and 9 they only know this phrase, "Hola ardilla caka", which I have implored them not to lead with this week, for this week they are at Spanish Camp, rediscovering immersion in Spanish.  I wonder if they will miraculously remember all they have forgotten?  Perhaps a door in their brain will open and verbs in complex tenses will pour out?  From their faces when I left (tense, not conjugating tenses), I suspect not, but I am curious, hopeful nonetheless.

I ought to go visit their old daycare provider.  She really was amazing.  She cooked different lunches for six toddlers every day, catering to their whims while also providing delicious food.  They always played outside in her nice little yard.  They sang and read.  I was so lucky to have found her.