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This One’s for You, Amy

There’s a farm market on the other side of our town that, like many small, family-owned farms, opens a play area for children every fall.  It has a “fun fort” in a would-be greenhouse.  It has burlap-sack rides, and corn boxes and animals to feed.  There are tire swings, and hay forts and bean bag games and mazes.  For children, this is a kiddie paradise to fall in, crawl around on, run and leap and slide.  Parents, you know what it means for us…

It means the purchase of quart loads of stain remover.  And an entire three-month season that revolves around picking hay out of shorts, out of socks, out of hair.  I didn’t buy the season pass today, telling myself I didn’t want to fork over that much cash for two children, that we wouldn’t be coming back here often enough to make it worth it.

Yeah, right.  Who am I kidding?

A Little of This, a Touch of That

“See? They’re green around the middle.” “No, I think they’re gray.” “Well, where would she get gray eyes?” “My uncle has gray eyes. And didn’t your dad have gray eyes?” “No, they were green, Leah. Well…maybe more a green-gray…” David and I were sitting on our bed this morning staring at Quinn’s face while doing some mental DNA site mapping, when all the poor girl wanted was some stinking juice and breakfast, already. It’s a typical conversation for us, and one that I wish wouldn’t come up quite so often. Despite all my pre-children absolute refusal to do so, parenthood has turned us into Master Comparers: When Saoirse bends a ball around the backyard like Beckham, well, she has to take after her soccer player dad. When Quinn keeps crawling across the room to take a swim in the dog’s water dish, despite our interventions, it’s obvious she has my stubborn streak. Saoirse has her dad’s almond-shaped eyes and resembles her godmother Kayla when she was…

Buying the Farm

We took Saoirse and Quinn to pick strawberries yesterday during our CSA‘s open farm day (yeah, yeah, I hear your jokes about patchouli and Birkenstocks). And as usually happens while harvesting one’s own produce from the earth itself, we spent a lot of time in an open field (shocking, right?), under a hot sun (in June?! No way!), a solid 10-minute uphill walk from the “house” part of the farm itself. As this little event strays from the norm of our air-conditioned, Wegman’s-shopping life, I was expecting a meltdown of sorts, but really, I did okay. Har, har.  You thought I was talking about the girls, right? Nah, they had a grand ol’ time. It was a good–albeit, long, exhausting, sweaty–morning, out of which I gleaned a few specific tidbits for the life lesson books: When there is a 24-pound baby who will need to be carried on someone’s back in a carrier that, while practical, clasps over your collarbone in an unforgiving way and produces enough sweat to fuel a slip-n-slide, opt to make sure your husband does…