Today I spent the morning on sun-warmed sand with Abbi and the five children in our combined care. In my hands I occasionally held a child; on my back, my beloved backpack I’ve had since highschool, holding a water bottle and sweaters for the children if they needed them. It’s still only barely spring here, so I wore layers: a swimsuit (this was the attire of my hopeful self), a short skirt, pants, a summer tee, a flannel, and my big wool hat. The wind kept me from being able to take any of these items off. But it was lovely. We had kites; Abbi and I laughed and breathed the salt-seasoned air. My son’s cheeks and hair have the first sun-kissed glow of the season.
It’s quiet in my home. My washing machine spins the towels and rags from cleaning up after lunch and after sandy kids. Fresh cloth diapers are folded on the changing table. The house smells good – of food, sun, and warmth.
Cooking on my stovetop is a london broil in wine. My neighbor and good friend brought us the cut of meat (generously taking advantage of a 2 for 1 sale), and my good friend Abbi gave me the dutch oven it cooks in. Also cooking: white rice with butter and marinated baked tofu for a late lunch. My kids sleep on. My daughter’s intentions were to stay awake for the bread I was baking, but put herself to bed, bored with the wait. My son will wake soon; I will go into his room and hold him and he will smell better than anything else.
Cooling on my windowsill: a loaf of Amish friendship bread (the starter given to me by my playschool adult ed instructor) and two chocolate cakes for my son’s birthday party tomorrow. Paige is bringing by cake decorating accoutrement tonight so I can finish the job.
My life could probably not get more domestic if it tried.
I know beyond a doubt that when I read this blog entry years from now I will be overcome with nostalgia and fondness for these days of my life. For now, I am fortunate and wise enough to pause in my hard work and enjoy what I have.