Thank God the holidays are over and life is back on schedule. For us, that means school and a full complement of kiddie classes to keep the monkeys occupied. While her brother wiles away his mornings in preschool three days a week, our little queen has the house to herself.
Not really. We're not home that much. Miss Mina's schedule is every bit as full as her brothers. Two different gym classes..an art class..the occasional story hour...and of course, playdates... But, we officially take Monday morning off. It's our time.
After dropping the Monkey off at school, we have three whole hours just to ourselves. We get home, clean up the morning breakfast mess, toss a load or two of laundry in the machine, read some good books, color without interruption, practice the words in our Big Word Book, do some folding, some cleaning, snack a little..
As an aside, it still amazes me when I hear Mina utter a new word. Do I expect that she's just going to babble nonsensical syllables her whole life? Do I expect that she's going to remain a happy little marshmallow forever? No, of course not. You'd think I'd be more seasoned as a mother, since she's the second. But I'm still stunned. One minute she's this little butterball toddling around the house, and the next, she's trying to explain what she wants...like pointing to her bunny, or to the refrigerator. This weekend, Jeff insisted that she walked up to him and said "poo" twice. And sure enough....well. You can figure out the rest.
These days the princess is thrilled to point out the various components of her face - her nose, her mouth, her eyes, her ears, her chin. She also likes to point them out on my face..usually when I am least expecting it. It's ok. A light poke in the eye or nose doesn't do too much damage. Except when she pokes me in the pupil. Then I remember the stern warnings of the eye doctor. Take it easy, he said. Your eyes need time to recover from the surgery. It cracks me up. No one explained the rules of post-op care to the kids.
Before you know it, it's 11:30, and time to go back and pick up the Monkey. We bundle up in our warm jackets (argh, I hate winter!), put our shoes back on, and waddle outside the door. Because we're all independent now, I can't carry her. She does it herself. It doesn't matter that the clock is ticking, and if I'm late picking the monkey up, not only will he be devastated, but I will get charged in fifteen minute increments.
To date, I have never been late, in fact I am usually early. It's probably because I have horrible memories of being the last one picked up from my tennis, softball, track, drama club practices all throughout school. My parents were on CP time. Or in our case, PT. (That's Pakistani time, for the uninitiated. It usually means showing up at least an hour after the designated time on the invitation. At least an hour. This may be fine for a wedding reception, but it doesn't work so well in other aspects of real life. And it doesn't do much for a teenager's self esteem as she sits there waiting, alone, in the dark doorways of her school, praying for the day when she gets her driver's permit so she can drive her own self around.)
Thank God we lived upstate where they let 16 year olds drive around. And my parents actually trusted us enough to let us do it! My kids won't be so lucky. I'm not that nice.