Personal Statement

Personal Statement

Saturday, February 12, 2011

Potpourri: Snowpocalypse 2011

Well, we survived.  Here are the stats:

Total days of school missed:  Five.  Four last week, one this week.  Factor in the number of days that both kids missed in January due to various communicable illnesses, and I'm fairly sure that they have spent as many days out of school in 2011 as they have spent in school.  Needless to say, this is all just fine and dandy with them.

Number of hours logged playing Wii and computer games over five snow days:  I don't even want to know.

Number of fights broken up between quarreling siblings (more often than not, arguing over Wii or computer access):  I don't want to know that, either.

Number of parents operating on half-power during Snowpocalypse:  Two.  See, "various communicable illnesses," above.  We both caught the respiratory one from the smaller of the small fry.  Dad's matured (like a fine wine, except not really) into a robust bronchitis, while Mom's headed for her sinuses and ears.  Fortunately, the ice melted and we had enough safe travel days in the middle there for both of us to visit the doc and claim our respective antibiotic prescriptions.

Note that said viral nastiness explains why we let our children go all "Lord of the Flies" and amuse themselves with Wii and computer games during much of Snowpocalypse.  Did I mention that we were both telecommuting throughout the entire "weather event"?  So, yeah, "Lord of the Flies" covers it - Dad would work, to the best of his stuffed-head ability, while Mom would nap, then we would switch, and four times a day Mom would make a meal or a snack.  Next day, same schedule.  I found it rather ironic that Groundhog Day hit in the middle of Snowpocalypse, because it felt like we were stuck in the movie with Phil Connors, Ned Ryerson and the gang.

The kids were pretty cooperative overall, with a couple of glaring exceptions.  Somewhere, I have saved the note from Parker to his dad that reads, "Dad, why did you call me obnaukshus [obnoxious] and close the door on me?" As per his usual, Parker included an illustration, depicting the author/artist crying huge crocodile tears in reaction to his father's heart-breaking rejection.  (The explanation, as you might have guessed:  Dad warned the kids that he was getting on a conference call, Parker got into his face anyway - and then got a door closed in said face.  Forewarned is fair-warned, kid.)  The best part of this note is that, over the last couple of weeks, Parker has been experimenting with his lower-case letters and reversing his d's and b's when the mood comes upon him.  (Evidence that the lack of book learnin' is starting to take its toll?)  So, the note actually reads,  "Dab, why bib you call me odnaukshus and close the boor on me?"

Fun stuff.

We did watch some educational television over the break, and one program (about the separation of the continents, the emergence of life out of the primordial ooze, etc.) stuck with the six year-old, who drew an image of the Earth covered with lava (and made me note thereon, in case I forgot later on, that the picture was of the Earth covered with lava . . . and rocks . . . lots of rocks, actually - this is a direct quote).  Below that were drawings of various early predators, real and imagined, and below that . . . was a timeline.  With completely random dates written on it.  Because, quote, "Mom, you have to have a timeline."

Like I said, fun stuff.

Number of times that we actually went out in the snow:  One.  The first couple of "snow days" were remarkable for their lack of the actual white stuff.  Ice, we had in spade; snow, not so much.  When we did finally get snow, it was beautiful to look at when it was coming down but useless otherwise.  Snowball-making attempts failed utterly, so both boys made exactly one snow angel each while their coughing parents huddled on the porch and tried to take unblurry photos (difficult when you are shivering).  Connor actually stayed out for awhile and tried to build a snow fort (another epic fail), but Parker did his snow angel thing, counted to one and a half in his head and started shrieking, "I'm wet!  And I'm cold!  I have wet, cold snow ALL OVER MY BACK!"  Um, yeah, kid, on account of how you just laid down on the GROUND . . . .  Six year-olds aren't big into cause and effect.  Into the house we went, and that was pretty much that.

Number of loads of dishes that I ran from Tuesday until midday on Saturday:  More loads of dishes than I can do in a month during the summer, when we basically live (and eat our meals) at the pool.  In close to fifteen years of marriage, eleven-plus of those with kids, I don't think that we've ever "eaten in" that many consecutive times.  It got really old after awhile, but - thanks to a bout of paranoia and long lunch break on Mom's part the day before the storm hit, we were fully stocked with groceries and therefore didn't starve, nor did we repeat selections all that much.  The first night we went with "breakfast for dinner" - steak and eggs for Mom and Dad, and pancakes for everyone.  We love B for D at our house, and we have decided that it should become a snow day tradition.

Like I say, we survived - Mom and Dad are still recovering (thanks, Zithromax!), but we did survive, the house and its contents largely are intact, and the last patches of ice are starting to melt, revealing spring tulips emerging from the ground underneath.   It is supposed to be in the sixties by Valentine's Day, and by the end of next week it will hit seventy.  Unseasonably warm?  Perhaps . . . but we'll take it, for darned sure.

No comments: