Sunday, August 18, 2013
Day 5 without Margo was the toughest yet, although reinforcements arrived late this afternoon in the form of Margo’s parents, who kindly drove in from Pennsylvania for the week. They were most welcome, and Lucia and Greta were so excited to see them.
Before they arrived, however, there was most of a day to get through, and it started early. Greta was up for 20 minutes or so at 4:30am, and then up for good at 6:30am, with Lucia up shortly there after. The day had a different tenor, and Lucia was very animated from the get go this morning: at one point she was doing laps in the living room, knocking whatever and whoever was out of her way, and it wasn’t even 8am yet.
It didn’t help that the day was cloudy and threatening rain. I finally persuaded Lucia to agree to go outside and ride her scooter, and we ended up spending over an hour out on the street in front of the house. However, Lucia whined and complained for most of the time, unwilling to ride her scooter or walk, insisting on standing on the back of Greta’s tricycle. Greta thought this was fun at first, but quickly tired of Lucia pushing her hands off the handlebars, and who could blame her. Lucia would also periodically hop off unannounced to pick up acorns.
Eventually we made it back to the house, and lo and behold it was almost 11am. We all missed mommy a lot at that moment. Lunch and nap time went somewhat smoothly, and I spent the time cleaning up the house for the Orlando’s arrival and dealing with a nasty trash situation in the garage (raccoons).
When both girls were up, I got them into the double stroller and we walked down the hill to town, bought a bottle of wine and some chips and salsa to bring to a cocktail hour at our neighbor’s house this afternoon, and then hoofed it back up the hill to home. Thankfully, the Orlando’s arrived shortly after we returned, and all was high hilarity with Gra and Pop-pop.
Around 4:45 we all headed over to our neighbor’s house for a little summer cocktail party. Gra and Pop-pop were great with the girls while I mingled and met our new neighbors and talked about Margo. We didn’t stay long, and the girls played out on the porch with their grandparents while I made dinner. How nice!
(An aside: Speaking of dinner, in the summers the girls usually have their dinner outside on the porch, which is really nice, and where Greta sits in a small booster seat that we’ve strapped on to a regular chair. However, when she is inside now, she flatly refuses to sit in her normal highchair at the kitchen table. After not using it once over the past 5 days, today I moved it out of the kitchen and into our rarely used breakfast room. It makes the whole room look so much bigger!)
Margo’s often said in the past that the 5th day that I’m away on a business trip is always the hardest, and I can see what she means. Both girls were tired and on edge all day until the Orlandos arrived. Things for some reason always felt just about to spin out of control, and holding that at bay has its own specific kind of stress and fatigue. Tomorrow I’ll be back in the office, leaving the girls with their grandparents during the day. Our babysitter will come on Tuesday and Thursday mornings this week, too, so many hands will be at the ready over the next few days.
I’m heading back to work with of course a new appreciation for what Margo does with the girls every day, especially all of the exciting, creative, engaging activities that she comes up with and somehow finds the energy to pull off, but also for the adaptability of Lucia and Greta.
Margo had never spent a night away from Greta, and had only spent one night away from Lucia in almost 4 years, but both girls have been wonderful – limited whining, very few tantrums and meltdowns, usually good behavior, listening, etc. It may be too early to tell since this is only Day 5 of 10, but so far I’ve been amazed at how still-good-natured and happy both Greta and Lucia have been every day. Knock on wood.
Some post-nap iPad use: