Sunday, July 26, 2009

a not so quiet afternoon

Even though my son is circling and sharking around my peripheral vision, demanding attention with his charming smile and whispering, enticing little comments -- even attempting to insert his lanky five-year-old self between me and the laptop -- I know that I have been a reasonably good mom this weekend and have earned a little time to myself. Since we returned from the pool I've been straightening up the studio, putting away the supplies from the last project (which takes almost as long as the project itself.) Plus ironing a few things in order to reduce the height of that pile, adding a few things to the dry-cleaning bag, redistributing stacks of books, putting away new supplies and new fabric that accumulated during the past month.

H. just crept not-so-quietly into the room and dropped a postcard on my lap: the Washburn A Mill explosion, an artist's rendering from 1914 or something like that. Now he's replaced it with a copy of The Lorax.

I went to the Wet Paint Annual Sidewalk Sale yesterday, in spite of a banging headache, and bought $84 worth of clearance items that looked interesting, useful, or just odd and therefore worth investigating. Dried pressed leaf skeletons and seed pods: good for making sun prints, which I'll do with the discounted sun-printing kit I also purchased. A tray of chalk pastels, some silver leaf and an applicator pen, odd papers, picture corners, clingy vinyl (good for window decor), some disks made of mica, a bunch of stencils, a hand-drill that needs bits, several brown folders and the coupe de gras, a whole role of Tygerag at a crazy low price. (I can't find anyplace in town that sells Tyvek, but that's a brand name, like Kleenex; this is the same stuff, bonded fabric paper, paintable and sewable.) I also got the kid a beetle collecting kit, and a little articulated artist's dummy, neither of which he is interested in just now.

As I opened and closed drawers, looking for space to consolidate supplies so as to make room for more, I found a bottle of fabric adhesive that had tipped over and subsequently glued itself shut; when I removed the clear, bubbly plastic glob between the bottle and the too-small cap, glue spurted out over my hands. Blah. It dried immediately, and I spent 10 minutes with soap, water and scrub brush scraping it off. My hands looked just awful -- reminding me of something I'd read about skin burns resulting from exploding meth-lab chemicals. White goop hanging in strips and chunks from my fingers. Ugh.

Ron is pulling H. back and forth across the floor in a laundry basket, yelling and laughing and scraping up the wood floor (sigh). Bought time.

There's still a bit more work to do.

The Mexicans across the alley are having a birthday party for their youngest, a 2 year old I think, and the already-bored pack of youngsters has started spilling into the alleyway. They're gazing longingly through the pines at our play gym out back (though they have a playgym of their own.) Ron met the dad, Simon, and the mom Gladys yesterday after he decided to whack the weeds down next to their garage at the same time he was doing ours. We don't chop our weeds down very often, so it's not like Ron was making some sort of point. We're kind of sloppy about that stuff, way in back, though the yard and garden closer to the house look quite neat and nice. Now the kids are jumping down our terracing. Someone's gonna get hurt. Sure enough, before I can convince my husband to go out there and caution the kids, someone falls down and bangs a knee. Now a parent herds the kids back into the yard, and it's quiet again...except for the sound of my own child pestering the life out of his father. The daddy who's trying to watch a baseball game. I should send H. to the Mexicans, but it's called party-crashing. Not so classy.

I can just possibly squeeze in a couple more minutes of book-stacking, while my son intentionally breathes his stinky breath into my husband's face. Soon enough my husband will call my name, making this hyperactive child my situation once again. At least we're ahead in the fourth.

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