spring hits

The first day of Spring. A big storm — our first in two years! — looms, but all day, only rain, a fine sleet, or a few snow flurries.

Just for fun, a few of the day’s hits:

***

First, four hours at Panera, writing. A piece of baguette (a little larger than normal, thank you, Panera workerman) and two coffees. Back home, a quick early lunch (cabbage — the children gag it down) and then the three younger kids (my older son is at classes) and I head to town on a quest: books and ice cream.

***

In the car, my older daughter plugs her phone into the car stereo. Sixteen Going On Seventeen blares and the kids sing along.

Totally unprepared are you 
To face a world of men 
Timid and shy and scared are you 
Of things beyond your ken — 

Suddenly I bellow: BULL. SHIT.

The kids scream — Mom! — and shriek with laughter.

“You can sing the song as long as you understand it’s a complete lie,” I say. “Have I made my point?”

Yes, they giggle, and I have a hunch that from now on when they hear that song, they will also hear my voice in the back of their heads calling bullshit.

 It’s a good feeling.

***

At Dairy Queen, the kids get their free first-day-of-spring cones.

***

At the library, each of us collects an armful of books. I pick out some read alouds, a few books I think the younger two might enjoy, some cooking material, a book on writing, and every single book on Puerto Rico I can find — so many that when I try to carry them, a bunch of them crash to the floor, oops. 

***

We stop at Kline’s for a second round of cones: today only 75 cents in honor of their 75th anniversary, mint cookies and cream.

***

On a whim, I pull into Gift and Thrift — Summer clothes, I say, Puerto Rico’s going to be hot — and within minutes we’ve appropriated three of the four dressing rooms, swapping clothes and modeling for each other, affirming and critiquing, no minced words.

I find two dresses and a pair of sandals. My son finds five pairs of shorts and a scooter (only four dollars, so fine). Eventually the situation devolves into vintage gowns and halter tops, so we leave.

***

We stop into Food Lion for a red onion, cilantro, and milk, and my son spends the rest of his gift card money (y pico) on two chocolate bars, and, on the drive home — along the side of the road, plow trucks idle hopefully — he feeds us pieces.

***

At home, the junky weather has lifted so I go on a run. Halfway, I spy an approaching bicyclist. Right before I get to him, he pulls over to the ditch. Idiot, I think. You have plenty of space to get around me, and then I realize it’s my husband, how sweet!

***

Back at the house, the boys are working on a welding project…

Charlotte is feasting on a bunny, and Alice is sulking (maybe because Charlotte won’t share)..

at our house, Easter bunnies don’t stand a chance

and the girls are making a peanut butter cream pie…


***

Supper is chili cheese dogs, peas, chips. We linger at the table while I read aloud from one of the Puerto Rican travel books I checked out.

***

Mom comes over to grind wheat and then scandalizes my husband by cleaning off the table with the vacuum.

She doesn’t wash it afterward, either.

***

All evening, we read (though the youngest is sad because he wants to play games and no one will join him).

I read to the younger two from A Day No Pigs Would Die, and then the kids head to their rooms to continue reading and I make hot chocolate with whipped cream and flip through a couple Cook’s Illustrated magazines (making exciting plans for the next day’s cooking ventures) and then start Annie Dillard’s The Writing Life. It’s so good! I laugh out loud, interrupting my husband’s reading every two minutes with excerpts.

This same time, years previous: the quotidian (3.20.17), pop quiz: what did you eat for lunch?, the quotidian (3.21.16), piggies!, over the moon, roasted vegetables, getaway, butterscotch pudding.

5 Comments

  • Suburban Correspondent

    Context is everything. The point of the song (if you see the movie) is that she's NOT timid and shy and scared – HE is. But she plays along. And, hooray! It's on the big screen in my town on the 31st and the 1st. Only $5.50!

  • GeorgiaHoneyBee

    Love your posts! Excited for you and the summer adventure ahead of you. Do you ever publish your read aloud book lists? I want to start doing that with my kids. Thanks!

    • Jennifer Jo

      I'd already sent them off to bed. They have come to begrudgingly accept the fact that we have snacks after they're in bed—it's our date time.

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