Saturday, May 17, 2008

The stuff of life.

We were supposed to be camping this weekend, but the weather forecast called for cold AND rain. I can handle cold. I can handle rain. But I can't cope with both in a camping situation, especially not when I don't really have to.

Last year, when we were at Camp de la Joie in Quebec City, it poured buckets one night. The children that were sleeping in the tent found themselves in the middle of a lake by the next morning. I have pictures of the makeshift clothesline we fashioned by stringing a rope between Adeena's van and my van!

Anyway, that was a necessity, because we were a day's travel from home. However, the camping we were planning to do was to be within a half hour of my nice, warm, cozy bed. The warm bed won over the adventure of camping. We'll do that later.

So, today turned into a cleaning day. My oven needed attention, so I sprayed it and began to scrub. I was able to do the door without much problem, but found that I could not scrub the sides or the top or the back of the oven without a great deal of pain. This neck problem that began with a car accident on February 8 last year has not resolved itself, even after more than a year has gone by. Patrick came to my rescue and finished the oven.

I had all of the children scrubbing baseboards - another job I found impossible to do. Then, later in the morning, I had Daniel and Linda clean the ceiling fan in the kitchen. I cannot look up long enough to do that job. They were great, though, and they had it done in less time than I would have taken.

After our deep cleaning of the kitchen, the kids headed to the pool for public swim. They met Heather and the entire gang, who were there to celebrate Quinlan's 8th birthday.

Linda and I stayed home, relishing the peace and quiet. We did a little bit of net-surfing, but the rest of the time was spent in doing other jobs around the house. After the kids got back from swimming, we all went outside to do yard work. I emptied the pond, which needs a good cleaning. Elena discovered that we have 7 baby ducklings! Elena and Tiana closed the ducks and geese into a pen to keep them from my pond. Linda installed a brick walkway circling the far side of the pond. Daniel mowed. Patrick helped me with odd jobs.

As the day drew closer to evening time, Tiana and Elena went inside to make supper while the rest of us finished our projects. Rick and Jared got home just when supper was ready!

When I think back on this day, I realize that it's the little things that matter. We accomplished so much more than a clean oven, a clean kitchen, clean baseboards and a clean fan. We worked together all day. We built relationships. We had fun together, both at the swimming pool and at home or on the truck.

This is the stuff of life. And it's all good.

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