Our lives have changed drastically in the two and half years I've been blogging and we are a busy bunch of people. I miss the quieter days when time dragged on, but these are good days, too. Mostly.
Sure, we still find time to do what feels like really odd wastes of time and effort and energy, like go to the fair and go through the exhibits that don't really change from year to year:
Okay, yeah, the quilts are cool, but seriously, it was 100 degrees the afternoon we went, and we only went because we could get in free. We rode no rides (not happening, for so many reasons) and we spent no money. We went for lunch at Sonic afterwards and convinced the girls, who hadn't remembered we'd done the fair before, that next year we can skip the fair and go straight to Sonic.
But, most of the time, now, when I'm home, it feels like I'm busy sitting beneath my laptop grading way too many papers for hours on end each day and answering emails, devoting time to helping students learn outside the classroom as well as in, all while Bobby and Rick manage the various household chores.
And yesterday, I commented as much to my mother; without the men in this house picking up the slack, there is no way I could do it all. None at all. Between work and the increased time required working with the girls on things that only a mother can do at this age, well, you'll have to excuse the mess that this house tends to be.
You see, there are ducks lined up across bookcases, and counting bears arranged in elaborate conga lines on the floor. There are pillows and toys and books in piles. And papers by the dozens and sometimes hundreds strewn about from the living room all the way back into the girls' bedrooms. The girls make the three adults in the house look slothlike in comparison: they are busy, and that creative burst of apparent destruction has deep meaning to them. The hundreds of drawings of monkeys or SpongeBob, all strikingly similar to each other (not the monkeys to SpongeBob), mean something to each girl. It's interesting to see their different obsessions handled in similar fashions, but at least Rosie hasn't insisted on going a month wearing nothing but monkey tees as Lily has with SpongeBob.
Yes, that's right. Other than one day the first week of school where Lil chose Mario over SpongeBob, Lily has worn a different SpongeBob tee to school for FIVE weeks. You're reading that right. She counted the tees up. She has 27 different (not counting pajamas, which I had to convince her she could NOT wear to school) SpongeBob tees. And she'll get four new ones for her birthday (and it's so hard not to give them now so she can finish week six with no repeats).
Is it wrong to feed a special interest like this? After all, I'm the one who buys the tees. I don't think it is. I think a goal of seeing how many days one can wear a different SpongeBob tee is an interesting goal. And no one at her school seems to be noticing this. We ask her everyday if anyone, including the teachers, has noticed and said anything. She grins big, a SpongeBob grin by the way, and says no one has.
So, yes, please. Excuse the mess. Ignore the precarious pile of papers, magazines, journals and books by my recliner. Ignore the conga lines and stacks of books, the star trek toys riding rooster figurines, the poncho on the skeleton and the offering of anatomy books at his feet and the christmas decoration hanging by its side while Madonna looks on and the cat plaque shows you where some of these obsessions come from.
It's all good, even if it's messy.