As it turned out, the weekend was busy but fun - not as frantic as I feared. My main personal growth goal for right now is to stop reving myself up with anxiety about activities I need to participate in. Its just silly and wasteful and it has to be possible to find a way to contain it. I think I've done harder things - but so far this one still has control at times. I got myself pretty hysterical Friday night when the option of staying in a hotel on the river to avoid going back and forth so much proved impractical- too expensive and some of my first choices were full. It is so hard in the midst of panic and overwhelm to act out of the perspective my mind never loses - that life is good and the problems I'm freaking out about minor. Have to keep working on this.
Watching day at ballet class was its usual treat. Its exciting to watch the young dancers progress. I've been watching some of these kids dance since they were three. Its so serious and professional now, with them going through positions, knowing all the French - receiving very subtle instruction about direction of palm and toe. KK's good, getting the technical things, the line and body mechanics perfect - strong, with great balance. She is still more technical than passionate, or was in class, but I suspect the love she feels for dance will become more obvious to the observer as her technique becomes even more second nature. Later in the afternoon I got a glimpse of the bon bon rehearsal - fun to watch the excited young dancers in rehearsal. The joy in dance was very evident then.
Even though the boys and I had the challenge of long waits downtown on Saturday, the day was over all excellent. KK was still with us on break when went to the farmers' market (near ballet) and the boys got the best face and body painting I've ever seen done by a neat woman who has a local children's' theatre company and was in Grease on Broadway for four years. She did arms as well as faces, and Danny ended up looking amazing with a glittery green gecko snaking up one arm and a golden tiger painted face mask with sparkling black nose. Zachary chose a Pokemon character whose name I can't pronounce on one cheek (think yellow science fiction cat) and a spider on the other. Both boys were delighted with the face painting and with the comments they got all afternoon about their appearance. KK was mature enough to accept that she couldn't get face or body painting because she had to go to the Nut Cracker
costume fitting next and couldn't risk getting makeup on the costumes.
While KK was at fitting and then rehearsal, the boys and I walked to the Children's Museum where I ended up having as much fun at the craft table as the boys did with gears and parachuting pigs. I love how frequently they change the exhibits, since we go often. Next week Bob will be home and we will all experience the Children's Museum's costume parade and party, as well as the Symphony's Annual Halloween concert. We've been going to that one since Joanna was on my hip - two? It has become a tradition looked forward to by a second generation of family kids now.
When the boys and I were walking to the Children's Museum, we had an unexpected treat. A fancy pet store near the dance academy was sponsoring a silent auction of designer dog houses. They were all kinds - bamboo, Plexiglas, metal, even constructed of tennis balls. And people brought their dogs to the event - ALL KINDS of dogs from tiny and easy to miss in arms to waist high and huge headed. Danny counted eighty six dogs! That was fun.
I kept up with Bob by cel phone (maybe I don't hate them altogether) while we were out and about Saturday. He had a great time taking a group of kids to the aquarium Saturday afternoon and caught up on sleep, reading and preparation this weekend when he didn't have to drive home.
The rest of the weekend was calmer. We skipped church and worked lots on homework. KK had a science assignment due - about adaptation of creatures to environment and she and I had a blast creating a little "Moss digger" out of a gray sock - think tundra prairie dog - to live in a cold world where the main predator is a big nocturnal cat. Digger of course, hides in his complicated tunnels at night and comes out in the day time. He is camouflaged by having fur the same color and texture as the moss he eats. It was fun watching KK's mind work on this project and having the supplies to help her easily create it.
Zachary followed through on last weeks promise and did not come home with unfinished work this week. He also was willing to practice his improving coloring and scissor skills for me, and happily read the small readers from his book bag repeatedly. Danny worked hard on his reading and spelling, and all the kids enjoyed the stack of old Halloween books I pulled out for the season.
Yesterday Ruth bought KK a green bike (as she has outgrown her old bike) . The Green Goddess is perfect for our girl and her arrival led to an afternoon of fun with bikes in the yard and down the street for Ruth,Chris, KK and the boys and I. It was a bright breezy mild afternoon - the kind that kept us outside until last light - KK and I on the bench reading Bella at Midnight to each other and the boys up in KK's tree and then bowling with pine cones for balls and pins both on the driveway.
Today is the first rainy fall day - fifties into forties tonight. I'm enjoying being inside watching it rain outside - but do want to get a walk in with a jacket. You never know here in Austin if it will get hot again. I hope not.