Monday, September 27, 2010

While I was in London...

I went to London for 4 amazing days - a pretty sophisticated hen party weekend for Mariam, several weeks before her wedding to Fred.

Of course, before I left, I managed to sign the kids up for the Lilla Lidingöloppet, a 1,7 km course just for kids. We were invited to run by Christopher's soccer-football-running team, and it seemed like a good idea at the time. But in practice, managing three kids with three different starting times, not to mention picking up the numbers in advance, took some serious coordination. Calle, our neighbor, helped out - and with one adult stationed at the start, and one at the finish, it appears to have gone smoothly... though I'm guessing that the picture makes it seem more effortless than it truly was. But in any case, all three ran, finished and received medals - the important bit.

What Happens When I'm Not There...

So I pick up my camera to take some pictures, and flip through some old ones. And what do I find but 20 (!) pictures of Benjamin's on-line catch. No "ones that got away" or "ones that were THIS big" - here we have proof of the virtual fish he managed to snag on the web.

And I wondered why my memory card was getting full....

Wednesday, September 22, 2010

What You Say... and What They Hear

Christopher loves his calendar and the idea of being organized. He was sitting beside me, writing in his activities...

"Fffff", he says, and then writes "F".
"Eeee" he continues, and writes "e".
"P" he sounds out a few times, and then writes "P".

"Look, Mama" he says. "Is that right?"
"FeP", I say, somewhat puzzled.
"Yep - 'cause I have FEP-ball tomorrow. Right?"

And where, in the whole scheme of things, did he miss the connection between his favorite sport and the FOOT?

Monday, September 20, 2010

Queen Annika

I'm not sure when it happened... when my daughter became royalty, and me a mere servant...

"Mamma," I hear on the phone at 4 pm, "I am going to pick mushrooms with my class tomorrow, and I MUST have new rainboots."
"OK..." I say, "I can pick you up and take you to Mörby Centrum in a few minutes..."
"But Mamma," she replies, using my least favorite name, "I'm playing with Malla right now. Just buy me up a pair in size 36."
Right. Not a chance.

So the next morning comes, and she doesn't have any boots... only her Converse basketball shoes, which she doesn't want to get wet. So she finds last year's pair, and deems them to be adequate to the task.

1.30 pm. The phone rings.
"Mamma", I hear, with crying, "I'm at home... My feet really hurt and I CAN'T GET MY BOOTS OFF"

I hate to report that at that point I was laughing too hard to be able to respond appropriately. And my amusement at the situation was not appreciated...

1.35 pm. The phone rings.
"Mamma", Annika says, somewhat accusingly, "We don't need these boots anymore, do we?"
"Nah, not really," I reply. "They're a bit too girly to give to the boys."
"Good." she says, "because I cut them off with scissors."

Monday, September 13, 2010

Birthday Morning II... and Gympa

Am I a bad listener? I do try... but last week we got a message from Christopher's gym teacher that he has not been changing clothes for gym class - a new thing for a first grader.

The first time, he didn't like my choice (since I wouldn't let him wear his football outfit) so he refused. The second time, he said he "forgot" even though the clothes (same ones) were there. The third time, he said he didn't have time. I tried to talk to him, but he doesn't see the point in changing - if he can play bandy on the playground in his jeans, why not bandy in gym class in his jeans?

So yesterday, I reminded Christopher that it was gympa tomorrow (thursday) and he needed to change clothes. "No gympa tomorrow..." he said. "Yes, it's Thursday, and you have gympa, " I responed. "No" "Yes" "No" and finally I got him to agree that IF he had gympa, THEN he would change clothes.

So this morning, after birthday preparations and celebrations, plus a nutritious breakfast of chocolate covered bananas, I reminded Christopher about gympa. "I don't have gympa today," he said, "BECAUSE we are going on a field trip... AND I have to bring a lunch." Panic. Chaos.

And thankfully, we had some pasta in the fridge, plus a few scrawny meatballs that I could warm up for him. "Not a great lunch, kiddo" I said, guiltily. "It's OK mom," he replied.

Thursday, September 09, 2010

Birthday Morning

This morning, I woke up officially 45 years old. Sounds so old... but I'm not - really.

David was out of town, so Benjamin crawled in bed with me about 5. At 6.15, I hit the showers, and Benjamin came in... sleepy, frustrated that the toilet seat wouldn't do his bidding, and angry. I said that it was my birthday - couldn't he destroy the toilet another day? And he gave it some thought...

"Go back to bed, Mom," he said, "and pretend you didn't see me."

So I did. And I listened. Christopher was cranky as usual, and started kicking up his morning fuss... but then got quiet. I never heard Annika. After 10 or so minutes, I snuck out and saw only empty beds. So I crawled back into mine.

Time went on... and I heard nothing. Finally, 20 minutes later, I heard the "flame thrower" in action, just outside the bedroom door... and the kids came in singing with their surprise - chocolate covered bananas with birthday candles (4, not 45). Annika had created the chocolate sauce from scratch (cocoa, sugar, vanilla and who knows what else) and Benjamin licked the bowl. Each of them had created a card - Benjamin's was a pop-up chair with a heart on it, the most creative of the lot. They whispered for an instant about presents, but I said I knew that we would do them later, when Papa was home.

And then we enjoyed our bananas... and kicked the morning into gear...

(No pics...)