Monday, September 27, 2010

The nuggets

This whole day was a really good blog post if I had the temerity to write it. Perhaps another day. But I was about to head to bed and realized the person I would be cheating is myself if I didn't write down at least these two nuggets. Because they were pretty good.

This morning, I was not able to convince Manny to go to school and it was a really sad scene. Once he was relieved of the pressure of going, I absorbed that pressure and had no idea what to do next. So I went to the grocery store. But, that too, was a sad scene. First, it was sad because I bought three wheat-free treats from the bakery for our snack and they all sucked. I felt momentarily proud of how superior my home baking is until I realized that not only did these snacks suck, but they also eroded into cascading crumbs on the table, the chairs, the floor, and then oops, I spilled Glory's water. And then oops, I spilled Elena's water. And then somehow Elena managed to coat her entire body in crumbs. I ended up scrubbing her with the "sanitized" table wiping towel I borrowed from the bakery checker. Gross? A little.

We went to do our shopping but no one could agree how we should travel. There are two types of carts. One that was preferable to Glory and one that was preferable to Manny. Elena didn't have a say because she was sanitized and strapped to my chest. No one would budge so I dragged them all screaming back to the car and somehow managed to get them strapped in by probably making promises I didn't keep. I can't remember now. What I said or if I kept them.

Anyway, I felt a surge of relief driving out of the parking lot. I had no groceries. But I was headed home, I had a latte in my fridge and no one was screaming at me. I missed my turn onto Gilman because I was still trying to recover from what had just happened and as I planned to get off at Dravus, I noticed through the rearview mirror that Elena had slid out of her shoulder straps AGAIN. I stopped as quickly as I could on a gravel strip alongside a storage facility, turned on the hazards and confronted Elena with the reality we were all facing.

Put your straps back on or we can never go home.

Now, I did this last week on the way to the bread shop. We had to pull over at a rundown apartment building and I was really dramatic, telling her that we would have to live in our car in this apartment parking lot if she didn't put her straps on. She was unphased, but Manny was sobbing by the end of my monologue because he was afraid he was going to spend the rest of his childhood strapped to his car seat far, far, far from home (in Wallingford).

So, this time I got her to put her straps on a lot faster and as we drove away, I heard Manny sigh happily and say, "I really didn't want to live there."

Tonight I made pizza. I have had many unsuccessful pizza attempts lately, usually centered around my inability to slide this great new spelt crust off of my pizza peel onto the pizza stone. What happens then is I get unreasonably upset and try to make a calzone out of my spoiled pizza, which doesn't really work either and the resulting mess is so ugly that the kids have to eat dinner with their eyes closed.

Enter parchment paper.

Even with this magical tool, my first pizza attempt tonight failed because my fancy fresh mozzarella was sour.

The second half of the dough turned out well with the cheap Trader Joe's cheese. It wasn't amazing looking, but it was headed in the right direction. When I put the pizza peel with the finished, bubbly pie on the counter, Manny began to exclaim, "It's a circle! It's a circle! Hooray for Mama! It's a circle! Everybody breakdance for Mama! It's a circle!"

They ate every last bite, eyes wide open. Of course, there was none left for Sam and I, but that's the thing about being parents. You almost don't even care. Until it's two hours later and you've finally cleaned up from their dinner and you still haven't eaten dinner.

But what does that matter when somebody celebrates your culinary victory by breakdancing in their underwear?

You almost don't even care.

I better get something to eat.


Mom said...

Like mother, like daughter. When you were about the same age, I was pulling over on Murray Blvd. with the same threats. So car seat, no car movement! Truely some things never change but as we get older we can laugh. I can assure you I was not laughing thirty years ago!

WieseMillr said...

I just wish I lived closer so I could help you. I enjoy your posts so much. You inspire me. I have a 9 year old boy and a 5 year old daughter.