I realized something yesterday: when you’re the full-time care-giver of small children, you sit a lot.
I try to do fun activities with the girls when we can. Fun for them, I mean: simple places like the park, farm markets, local museums, library programs. And SK’s been begging to go to the “Kid’s Place,” a section in our local arts and education center that’s geared for the 5-and-under crowd. It’s a great place to go in bad weather–a short drive into the city, it’s inside, takes up a solid morning otherwise spent in a house I’d have to clean if I were inside it–but on this absolutely gorgeous fall day, and because SK had asked sooo nicely (“Please may I go?” I’m a sucker for good manners), off we went.
And the girls played. They have a blast, even. I sat.
They put on a show in the little theater there, Quinn dancing on her knees and SK boogying around the stage, while I…
They played in a little grocery “store,” and crawled up a slide, and basically ran around that place like a dog was nipping at their knickers. (Except they were laughing the whole time. I don’t think if there were an actual dog chasing them they’d be quite so giddy, but you get where I was going with that, right?)
And I, well, you know what I did.
It’s funny, because when we’re around the house, and the kids are playing, I’m busy. Those baby clothes piled up on the couch aren’t folding themselves (and David, three years after the fact, is still terrified of folding footy pajamas, so, you know). No one else is doing the dishes after breakfast…and snacktime…and lunch…and I’ve discovered that if they’re still in the sink when Dave comes home he isn’t as delighted to help clean up after dinner as usual.
But when we’re out, the more active the kiddos are, the less I have to do. So I sit. Sometimes I stand, yes, but really, if there’s even a small ledge on a window somewhere, my derriere is in a chair.
After SK had run herself so silly her face was flushed the color of her pink pants, we walked up a couple blocks to have a picnic in the grass. SK loves herself a picnic, because it’s different and outdoors and some squirrel kept staring at us because her chocolate milk apparently looked way more appetizing than a half-eaten walnut. SK’s momma loves a picnic because that’s just fewer dishes I have to clear out of the sink.
So we sat.
We sat and we ate until it was time to pile into the car and drive home while, yes, we sat some more.
And then, the girls took a nap, and I did some dishes. Because that’s just the way the day goes when you’re home. But when David gets in tonight, I’m lacing up the sneakers and going for a run, because, well, you know. My legs miss me.