Sometimes I cannot believe we lived this way for eight months. Seems impossible. Where was I? I rely so heavily on that garage door going up at dinner time that I plan my day around it.
Then when my brain settles into the solo mindset again, we are cruising at altitude and taking liberties to cut corners and act out:
- I bought trays from the thrift store. TV trays. The kids and I haven't sat at the kitchen table all week!
- "Dinner" is technically not what I've been serving on those trays.
- I got a speeding ticket yesterday.
- Grayson "Windexed" all mirrors in the house. Without Windex.
- Abigail has been sleeping on Daddy's pillow since Monday.
- Someone may or may not have shaved her legs in a day or two. Or since Monday.
Abby was home on Tuesday so we dreamed things up to do. After an hour of tea parties, snuggling, picture drawing, I shuttled us in the car to go thrifting for an hour to find lemonade stand things. We needed an objective, I was desperate to leave the house. With an eagle eye she found a pitcher, faux lemons, and a flour sifter all in the same aisle. We'll worry about the flour sifter later. Abby was so tired I assumed she would be happy with the shopping as our main activity of the day. Lord knows I was.
Then we picked Grayson up from school and the two kids got to chatting about what we did today. Since it was spring like outside, I drove us to the park to soak in some sunshine. Kids still chatting about this and that. I tuned out, happy to eat my Trader Joe's lunch at a distance on a park bench.
Evidently, a mother should always listen because by 3pm the children were asking to leave the park to get home to set up their lemonade stand.
It was 3pm. Does anyone feel like creating something out of nothing at 3pm? Holy lemons, I did not. Yet these two little people had consulted, developed, and masterminded the entire thing. I just needed to carry things outside for them. They did the rest.
First customers were these guys.
Their sweet mom was driving past our house and stopped to patronize our stand. Two shiny quarters later, we had lots of happy and the two boys had two very full cups of lemonade to balance on their laps for the car ride home.
Then we hit a slump. 3:30, 3:45, 4pm nobody. I kept dropping hints to pack up shop and go inside. Like, "I'm cold, let's go inside." or "It's February, this is crazy."
Two teenagers on their bikes rode past our house. Grayson yelled after them. Yes, Grayson yelled after big kids. That alone made the whole thing worth it. "Lemonade for SALE!"
And they turned around, dug deep in their pockets and gave Grayson and Abby their first lesson on etiquette. "You have a nice home, ma'am," the one with the swim team sweatshirt offered making small talk while Grayson nervously (yet so carefully) filled each cup without spilling one drop. "Thanks, Kid. Keep the change."
I felt like I was in a Lifetime movie. You should've seen Grayson's face. He thanked them quietly and very much looking at his shoes. The big kids smiled and wished him luck. I waved to them the kind of dorky mom wave they've seen a hundred times before. I was thanking them for taking their time, for being so kind to my boy.
(Teenagers have always surprised me with their tender hearts and gracious understanding of the world. This is why I fell in love with teaching literature to 10th graders. The minute they identify with Hamlet's tortured soul or Juliet's lovelorn gaze, you know you are in the presence of growth.)
And to think I was ready to pack up and go inside just because it was February.