Mid-week Snaps

Pre-season training camp for soccer has started…After three hours of practice between the two of them, the kids go straight from the car to the backyard to practice some more.

IMG_0740IMG_0741Beta Bridge today…IMG_0743A brand new mural on the Corner, inspired by Rita Dove’s poem “Testimonial”:IMG_0745IMG_0747

We wandered around town for three hours this evening waiting for one kid or the other to be finished with soccer…In one of the two grocery stores we visited to kill time, we were in the checkout line when I heard my daughter ask, “Can we get this?” Without even looking, I reflexively said, “No” as I always do. But when I turned around and spotted what she had in her hand, I said: “I mean, YES!” They could have tasted like dirt, and we still would have had to buy these:IMG_0758And even though the only banana-flavored things I usually like are actual bananas, these tictacs are weirdly delicious!IMG_0760IMG_0755

I could make you happy…

This weekend was all about making other people’s dreams come true…

On Saturday bright and early, I went to the worst place in the world:

…the DMV.

And even though I was quivering with fear and anxiety, later that night I took that boy and his hot-off-the-printer learner’s permit to the elementary school parking lot just down the street from where we live to practice driving:

After our trip to Hell the DMV, we went to the Verizon store to replace my second son’s phone. A couple of years ago when I bought him his first phone, I had to interrupt the enthusiastic salesman’s pitch about the amazing features of the latest, greatest phone.

“Actually, I’d like your most basic phone,” I said, “It doesn’t have to do anything other than receive and make phone calls. What I’m looking for is the kind of phone that my kid might get made fun of at school for having.”

The salesman escorted me over to a dingy corner in the back of the store and placed one in my hand.

“Here you go. They don’t even make these any more. Your kid will definitely get made fun of for using this one.”

I’m not really sure what possessed me to replace this phone, which my son lost towards the end of the school year, with a much nicer phone, but I have to admit – the reaction was pretty gratifying:

And then there was this:

But the really nice, self-sacrificing thing I did for my daughter was to accede to her heartfelt plea to take her and her brothers to the Albemarle County Fair.

It started out so well, with this picturesque drive up to  Ashlawn Highland, James Monroe’s estate, in our air-conditioned car:

But the moment we stepped out of the car, a heatwave hit us like a wool blanket heavy with sweat.

We tried to distract ourselves by looking at the cute animals on display…

But even they looked miserable:

This smart cow had the right idea:

We had a greasy lunch of deep fried macaroni and cheese that looked like little triangle chicken nuggets, fries dripping with some Velveeta-esque product, deep fried pickles:

and some red velvet funnel cake:

To commemorate the occasion, I recorded a little song:

The dream is over…

My mother complained bitterly about being at the beach the LAST time we all converged upon Fenwick Island a couple years ago when my dad turned 80. We were surprised when she said she wanted to go again for her own 80th birthday. This time around my parents weren’t able to actually make it onto the beach, though one morning they managed to make it to the top of a sand dune so that they were able to take in the view of the ocean. They tried to pretend they weren’t having any fun at all…

But they couldn’t fool us…

It was impossible not to be happy with these two around…

Even when it rained, the cutest little mushroom popped up to make us smile.

I loved watching the cousins forge bonds with each other…

And I loved seeing the older cousins have the chance to be caregivers to the younger ones…

My daughter’s favorite part of the week was having a surprise family birthday party a few days before the actual day…

We were sad to leave the beach…

But we were glad to have just a little more time with my brother’s family…

The dream is over…

Until next time!