The summer slipped by, busy for a second pandemic-influenced one. The family went on two adventures and I went on one that didn’t coincide time-wise; a big chunk of available time gone. Adrian came to Three of Earth Farm by himself for two nights in June. “I had a good time,” he said, “but I don’t want to come again.” Elliot can come, he told me when I protested. Elliot didn’t want to come.
So I went to them last week when Wynne returned to school to prepare her classroom for teaching. Not the same as overnights at my house, but we had fun.
We did science experiments—slime, volcanoes, glow worms—and Elliot practiced making a hypothesis, observing, asking “why?”, revising.
Elliot is a big list maker. We did nearly everything on it. Due to cool-ish, sort of rainy weather—and other factors I won’t mention here—we substituted a movie for Discovery Park. And I played Nintendo. Yes, I did. I could have done it with eyes closed. I might as well have done it with my eyes closed. I just pushed buttons; Stunningly, Elliot won every race. I won at ping pong, however (not on a screen), though Elliot did great. He is really growing up.
Elliot pointed out blackberry locations, I picked them, Adrian made a new friend.
We got to two of the three school parks and went on a boat trip/don’t step in lava adventure.
The “trampalien game” involved many balls that I threw over the net and they tried to catch while jumping. It filled a LOT of time.
Swimming didn’t last long, again due to circumstances I won’t mention here.
Chocolate chip cookies, always a good plan. Always.
They even did some chores on their list for money!
The three and a quarter hours it took me to get home in traffic on Friday afternoon was well worth time spent with these guys. It wasn’t until I had left that I realized Adrian hadn’t asked to do “pretend stories” with me. Has he forgotten “that’s what we do, Gigi”? I’m sorry I didn’t suggest it, even knowing he would have begged for it constantly if I had reminded him. Funny how we miss when it’s gone what had become tiresome.
Elliot starts second grade on Wednesday, Adrian is off to kindergarten the following week. Where the hell has the time gone? Has it been only a year since we were reconfiguring rooms in my home to accommodate four extra people? Do I maybe just a teensy bit hope Three of Earth Pandemic School returns? No, not for their sakes, but maybe a bit for mine. Maybe next year I’ll buck up and try a joint Camp Gigi again if they won’t come alone. It’s a tradition I don’t want to let go. Not ever. Even if it’s hard. I want it ingrained in their memories like summer time alone with my parents is part of the fabric of my children’s lives.
For now, it’s soccer season, and Saturdays will find me on I-5 for Elliot’s games as often as possible. “Are you coming to my soccer game, Gigi?” he asked as I left, after one more one more one more hug.