Thursday, July 30, 2009

Aidan's 8!

This morning I woke up dreaming about a conversation I hope to have about 15 or so years from now with the future love of Aidan's life. I remember that in the conversation I was explaining the kind of child he was, his literal explanation of the world around him, his love of fact and compassion for animals. I gave examples of how he would search for puns to tickle our fancy, or the time he nearly cried when he thought that an innocent slug laid victim to a baked potato. Wanting to be realistic and objective, I also divvied out helpful advice for some of his pitfalls, mainly how he becomes so absorbed in his own fact-filled, inanimate world that he often forgets that there is an entire biotic world surrounding him. I see through admiring eyes how strong and determined a man he has become. I, in my chic ensemble looking not a day over 32, kinked my neck when I threw my head back and laughed at said love of his life’s sharing of Aidan’s quirks and dear qualities. I quickly recovered, remembering how Aidan scolded me for talking too loud in front of his friends when he was just 8.

He is just 8!
I imagined him as a grown man and realized how quickly these past 8 years have flown by.

Wondering through my thoughts I landed on a timeline, of sorts.

10 years from now he will be a legal adult, graduate from high school and set off on his own for the first time. He plans to travel the world and I worry already about whether he will pack enough underwear and if he will eat enough. My heart sobs at the thought of not having him put his arm around me as we walk together and my skin crawls at the thought of the specimens growing in his dorm room.

8 years from now he will be driving. I can feel the gray hairs pushing through my scalp at the weight of that responsibility. He says when he develops his time transporter he is going to go forward 8 years and bring his drivers license back with him.

7 years from now he will enter high school. There will be first dances, clubs, possibly a broken heart. He already talks about the chemistry and biology classes that lay ahead. I can only hope he pops in my room once in a while and (dare I hope) wants to have lunch with me once in a while.

4 years from now he will enter middle school. There will be hormones and crushes and activities and clubs and friends and cell phone and homework, oh my. I believe there is a countdown somewhere in his room regarding the cell phone clause. My head is spinning as I imagine this awkward, pimply, sweaty, brace-face stage.

And tomorrow. . .

He will have loved ones and classmates here to celebrate his last eight years.
I will be trying desperately to hang on to all 525,600 minutes of Aidan being 8.

Wednesday, July 29, 2009

warm spot in the pool

Avoid it.

At all costs.

You know what I is hot with a breeze but the water is chilly.
You are trying to acclimate, walking softly, trying to minimize the water as it laps bitingly against your belly.
The water is clear, bright and quite possibly colder as you stand there allowing the breeze to strike the waves against you.
You see them, those annoying kids who you saw pick their noses and wipe it on each other earlier, the ones who pushed the shy little boy off the edge and called him a sissy, the ones you pitied because you know that at the heart of it they are not happy with themselves,
and they are splashing now.
You cringe like the skin of your torso is made of the same flesh as the Wicked Witch of the West.
You slowly and deliberately move
into where they have been
to avoid where they are going.
Your arms are bent at the elbow creating a shield against the sheen of the water's surface and your upper body,
your shoulders are shrugged, trying to eek another inch out of the water.
You are still struggling to take the plunge when you feel that all too familiar warmth.
The sensation begins...
radiating down the length of your body.
Without thinking you succumb...
gliding deeper into the warmth
arms fanned out
until it is just

The sun is dazzling on the surface of the water.
All you feel is the warmth.

Your mind wanders to the greater worries of life and you tell yourself that all you need to do is get acclimated and you can do anything.

Your mind quickly turns to the times when friends have reached out their hands and you jumped into the waters of life. Unabashedly. Fearlessly. The laughter and support of their kindness warmed you.

And then, just as quickly as you succumbed to the warmth, just as quickly as you reminisced of life's metaphors, you realize that warmth you embraced
that shoehorn to the chill of the water that you excepted
that reaching hand that came with all kinds of strings attached

mean kids urine at that.

As I flipped and then flopped early this morning trying to fall back asleep I worried about a friend of mine. She has been dancing in the warm spot of the pool and the sad truth is she doesn't see it for the pee that it is. She is starting to smell of it, I'm afraid. She doesn't read my posts and I have shared my worries with her before. I fear that she won't see it until she has had a taste of the moral-wrongness of it all.
I worry about how easily it is to get coaxed into what seems to be a good deal. More than once I have asked the Almighty for sight, to see the truth, to see evil, to see the piddle in the pool water as it were. I hope when Aidan and Nadia read this as adults they will have grown accustom to having their eyes open to the truth and to see favors for what they are.

Sunday, July 26, 2009

To Do List

Go to the water park in Moses Lake with the cool kids - check

Loose your second tooth at the water park - check

Revel in the joys of a chili dog- check
Be thankful for the big boys who were kind enough to let Aidan pal around with them- check

Have serious water fun with your favorite friends- check
Enjoy lazy chats in the not so lazy river- check
Enjoy more chatting with good friends and new friends in the grass- check

Boogie with the best of them- check

Make your mom proud (and nervous) by being so brave- check

Conclude Moses Lake's water park, being bigger and better, is good for the day trip but Hermiston will do for an afternoon soak-n-splash- check

Hide in the garage, in my car, to finish Wicked- check

Enjoy Art in the Park with your BF's- check
Play the part of A Boy and his Dog, even if it is a borrowed dog- check
Do a robot dance while you wait for your turn in the endless line at the zip line- check
Be thankful for the kindness of strangers who let your kid back in line after forgetting to hand off her puppet- check

Strike a pose like the celebrity you are- check (seriously, you can't take Powder anywhere without people mobbing him)
Give an overlooked Moo the new breed of Eur-Asian Ridgetick back to make him appear exotic- check

Hang at the Red Park with your shirt off because you're "boiling"- check

Giggle like a girly-girl because you are- check
Cut the chick out of the picture behind us because you can totally see up her shorts- check
Gorge on THE BEST TACOS ever- check
Grocery shop-
Shop for Aidan's birthday-
Get carpets cleaned-
Fix truck-
Install playground bark-
Finish new book-
Plant tree-
Practice revived gross out word-
Clean the fridge-
Finish THE BEST TACOS ever-
Sweep the back patio-
De-cobweb the flower beds-
Wrap up this silly To Do list- check

Wednesday, July 22, 2009

huuunggggkk- ahem- hhhuuuuuwwhach

That is me dry heaving.

Over what you might ask?
My dinner.
The one I made.
With love for my dear sweet Tony.
One of his favorites, homemade chili over baked (not microwaved) salt crusted potatoes topped with sharp cheddar cheese. I can hear the unmistakable collective mmmmmmmmmm.
When I opened my potato all fancy like down the middle and popped the ends to create a nest of potato-y goodness for the toppings I found this...
and no I don't know for sure what it is.
Maybe a fungus.
Maybe a genetic abnormality, a chimera of sorts.
It looked like a slug.
Inside my potato.
With no visible entry points.
But I am a trooper.
I lopped off a chunk of Tony's and a chunk of Nadia's and I was going to soldier on.
Then I helped Aidan open his potato...

Inside we found what appeared to be a well cooked shelled clam.


Did you know that kids' eat for $0.99 at Applebees on Wednesdays?

Did you also know that a grilled portabella mushroom looks remarkably like a slug?

Sunday, July 19, 2009

row row row your boat

or have someone else row it for you is what I always say. . .

Yesterday Tony and I were at a loss as to how to spend the hot, beautiful day. We researched aquatic opportunities from Warm Springs Canyon (supposedly in Walla Walla) to Emma Lake out near Kahlotus. Swimming? Floating? Fishing? What to do! We debated about the water level of the Touchet this time of year and the floating merits of both the Snake and the Columbia. Nadia chimed in and voted ardently against the Snake because "Dad gets to distracted by the boats at the Snake River and uses up all of our time in the water and at the park". I protested the Columbia because of a deep seeded fear of that river after a spiders nest and dunking incident I won't go into today. I believe I finally was persuaded to try our oars in the Columbia after Tony swore he would take all emotional responsibility in the event that our children were simultaneously swept into an undercurrent, entangled in aquatic plant life only to become bloated balloons of drowning death despite life jackets.

I realize I may have been overreacting a bit, but like I said I have a profound fear of the Columbia.

Once again Tony was right. After purchasing two 2-man rafts complete with oars and foot pumps, 2 new life jackets for growing kids and a few snacks we were off to pump till our foots were purple on the bank at Chiawana park. Yes we looked totally stupid pump-pump-pumping among the jet skis, ski boats, party boats and sail boats but we were here for adventure.

At this point you might be asking yourself what happened to Tony's beautiful sailboat? It is currently tangled in bureaucratic Oregon and Washington licensing red tape and is dry docked next to our garage. Any who...

I insisted Aidan accompany me because lets face it, if this raft gets capsized Nadia and I as a duo wouldn't have a snowballs chance in Pasco's summer of surviving. And so we row. Tony gracefully puts oar to water and glides effortlessly up the current. And again he delicately slips his oars into the water and seamlessly back through the air pushing further upstream. He is a thing of beauty. Nadia is a little nervous and adjusts her position again and again but that doesn't stop his cadence.

And then there Aidan and I spin in circles, first left then splash. splash. thwack. right. Back to shore, out too far into boat traffic, left then right then curse curse curse!!! I look over my shoulder at my husband expecting an encouraging smile or a look of concern. No no no, not my Tony. He is bustin' a gut and can't even compose himself to offer a suggestion. Not that I would have taken his suggestions any way. Aidan, who lounged against the back of the raft offered to help but still we didn't make much head way. Finally we covered a stretch of wet and then Tony offered to tow us.

and thus my friends my plan worked. Muuhaahaahaa!

Yeah, I am kidding. There was no evil genius in this plan. I seriously can not row a stinkin boat. My arms are all googily catywhompus. I thought I had it but then there we'd be, spinning in jagged circles. My only reputable moment of the trip was when Tony's oar snapped (presumably from hauling the large caboose) I did jump into the fear-inducing water and swim to get the pieces. Ok, so I did throw a hissy fit complete with shouts of Eww! Eww! Eww! when my feet touched the slimy undergrowth as I tried to get back aboard.

Thank goodness I had packed my laugh.

We rowed up, jumped out, played, towed the kids as they kicked, snacked, floated back, marveled at the reeds, the homes and the sailboat wonders.

The trip was a relaxing, beautiful, silly, Bachartish, tan-evening delight.

Thursday, July 16, 2009

I found it!

My laugh!
It has been lost for a while now.
It was buried under piles of stress, buckets of appointments and loads of responsibility. All of that is still here, I just pushed it aside to find my laugh again and now I keep it with me. Oh sure I could still laugh at really funny movies or a really funny story or laugh inappropriately and uncontrollably in a crowded conference while in a sleep deprived state but mostly I would just smile because laughing wasn't easy anymore. I wouldn't laugh at the little things. Like the little guy leading into this post, he elicited just a smile, but when I scooped his cousin off of Tony's shirt at Charbonneau Park and then uncurled my hand to examine him I laughed... out loud... with ease! He quickly leaped into Nadia's hair. She stood hands-on-hip with a 'COME ON PEOPLE' look on her face and I laughed again. Aidan laughed and I laughed more. Now that my laugh is found I am laughing all over again at the memory of laughing.
How boring life must have been when I saved my laugh only for the big things.

Monday, July 6, 2009

my last-first-lost tooth, not that this is about me though

There are no more milestones for my baby. Mind you that doesn't mean I will ever stop calling her that. Say goodbye my little one to the cuteness of little kidhood and hello to the gappy-toothed-gangly-awkwardness of big kidhood. She lost the tooth that has been wiggly for about a month now. The new tooth has been patiently poking behind this one for about as long. Getting the tooth out was a two man job...well three if you count Nadia since I only got it mostly out and she sat up and spit it the rest of the way out.

It was quite a scene.
As for the apple, well she wanted it stuck in the apple for the Tooth Fairy to see. You got me on that one.

Saturday, July 4, 2009

while you were out meets you wish you had been

One month ago Tony's Dad and Becky came to visit for Nadia's birthday. I was at work but thanks to Sara for covering my afternoon class was able to come home at 11:00 to spend the rest of the day with Nadia. Upon arriving home I felt as if I was on that TLC show While You Were Out. What was once a stretch of rock flanking the side of our house had been transformed into a beautiful garden. A garden that houses three stunning hastas...that have even bloomed. What's more is that John and Becky planted a ton more under our not-so-lovely inherited trees. You can't see them from the shot below but I am sure you can imagine your own surprise if you were to walk up onto this grundgy-unkept hill and discover lush hastas and plant b (yeah, I am not a botanist people, I can not for the life of me remember what the name of the other plant is) tucked away. We are so thankful of John and Becky's gift and all of the hard work they put into it.So thankful that we thought it was a shame these beautiful plants did not have more of a showcase to live in.

Enter Tony and the bobcat.

This is where it goes from
While You Were Out
You Wish You Had Been Enter also 24 ton of basalt rock and 9 ton of crushed rock. Oh and please don't for get the 4 stepping stones or the 4000 pound boulder. No, no typo there. 4000 pounds people!!!

Enter too the sore muscles, burned shoulders and ears, chipped manicure and nasty blood blister.

But not the pictures of the completed project. Not yet anyway.

I do have these pictures to share...

You know the saying, while the cats away the mice will play?

Well in our house it is more like when the parents are otherwise distracted the kids will

be coveredinmud!
Thanks Tony for all of the work you July...when it is 100 degrees...on your 4 day weekend.
I love you!

Thursday, July 2, 2009

Finding the words for the little words that leave us wordless

There may be words that make some uncomfortable and the possibility that the words will elicit uncomfortable images if you are a visual person. I for one will never look at goldie-mexi-fries the same again.
Proceed at your own risk.

Nadia heard the word gay. She didn’t know what it meant. I am the family’s liberal-black-sheep so this should be easy right. As parents, Tony and I have a fierce desire to raise children who are tolerant, loving and respectful of ALL others. I wanted to get this right, to choose the right words.

Me: Well Nadia, gay is when two people of the same sex love each other. Do you know what sex means?
Nadia: no
Me: boy or girl. A person’s sex means if they are a boy or a girl. So if two boys love each other or two girls love each other then they are gay. What do you think about that?
Nadia: (with a slightly skewed face) that’s kinda weird.
Me (in reality): no it’s not weird really. People just love who they love. I wouldn’t want someone not to love or not to be loved.
Nadia: SO WE’RE GAY! You and me, we are gay Mom! We’re both girls and we love each other so we’re gay.
Tony: you and mommy have mommy-daughter love. This is for when people are grown up, like married-love.
Nadia: Ooohhhhhhh. So we are half-gay!

I have no words for that one. At least not right then.

On to other news…

While I was rushing around trying to get the clothes laid out for the next day and get the kids into the shower I realize that we Bacharts were not alone. I heard my brother and Cooper in the house here to pick something up. (Mind you, I was getting ready for bed. I have not worn a bra to bed since I was nineteen and I was in my pj’s. You know the kind. The ratty ones that people outside your immediate family should not see you in because they are nearly thread-bare and I thought to myself, he is your brother, but come-on! He doesn’t need to see that!) I noticed that sweet Cooper had sprung a little leak, so I was off to find some clean pants suitable for a 2 year old boy. Again, rushing around…preoccupied if you will. Aidan said, “hey Mom, see my tater-tots” as he stood buck-behind-naked in front of me. Oh yes, he was talking about those tater-tots.
Me: hmmmm, yeah I do. Where have you heard them called tater-tots?
Aidan: no where. I just made it up. Don’t they look like tater-tots?

No words for that one either.