My recipe for a good weekend involves an adult dinner somewhere fancy, a long run, singing good music at church, and a family adventure. This weekend, I did not run long. I just wasn’t into it. I did two sub-2-mile runs. In other words, keeping up the streak at the bare minimum. Some days are like that. But the other elements happened.
We ate with friends at Talula’s Daily on Friday night. I sang Bach and Brahms at church. The family adventure: We went to the Philadelphia Art Museum as our Mother’s Day excursion.
There was a lot of complaining about this, and fighting in the minivan on the way downtown. But the Impressionist exhibit was a pretty cool payoff for braving the rain and sibling battles. There were some great works by Monet, Van Gogh, Cassatt and Morisot. We discovered that we could mildly increase child engagement with the paintings by getting them audio guides (even the 4-year-old). However, this didn’t work miracles. Let’s just say I would have lingered more on this Mother’s Day excursion if I did not have children (or at least the actual children I happen to have. Maybe someone else has little art experts who enjoy comparing Cezanne’s earlier and later works…) We walked past the horse in shining armor in the arms and armor exhibit several times (always a kid favorite) and the kids got to make a craft with the Art Splash program.
A few other variations from the usual weekend recipe: On Saturday, my husband took our 11-year-old and three of his friends out to see Detective Pikachu (A Jasper Movie Review is coming, I think!) and to get pizza. I handled the Little League game, though I didn’t see much of it as I had the two youngest kids on the playground much of the time.*
I have been trying to read Truman Capote’s In Cold Blood. I’m not sure I’ll finish it — it’s well-written of course, but I don’t really like the true crime genre. At some point I decided to switch over to The Boxcar Children (the first book in the children’s series) and finished it in about an hour.
We ended Sunday night with a calendar meeting. This is when my husband and I sit down with our calendars and talk through when we’re both traveling, kid events (and whether these overlap with times when we’re both traveling), and things we’d like to do. As a result of this, we now have a double date planned with my little brother and his girlfriend, and an idea of at least one activity to do over Memorial Day weekend. Plus clarity on who covers what. These meetings have definitely gotten better since we’ve started doing them. I highly recommend them to anyone who wants to make sure planning and household/parental management goes smoothly.
*This was, in a way, a highlight. Another child on the playground kept asking my daughter “what’s wrong with your eyes? Your eyes look funny — why do they look like that?” After two failed surgeries to correct the non-alignment, this is just reality right now. When my daughter came over to swing, I mentioned that she could answer with one of the phrases we’ve talked about in the past, but she said “or I could just not answer.” Which is also true! And turned out to work fine as eventually the questions slowed down and they just played. I love the way she handles the world.