School ended June 14th. I pulled out of the parking lot with a giant THANK THE LORD sigh and since then (I realize I haven’t written at all) I have been letting my head untangle the year, piece by piece, until I can finally breathe again and know that yes, summer is here. This period of paralysis can last anywhere from one week to three, but I think I am finally free, finally sinking into June (which I guess ends this weekend).
So no drawing, no writing, no teaching, but lots of driving barefoot with the windows down. I have spent the last 15 days doing this:
1. I took Luke to get his drivers license. I told him to smile for his picture. He will never forgive me because he grinned so large that both rows of teeth show and he looks mildly insane. “No one looks at it anyway,” I explained. “MOM. EVERYONE LOOKS AT IT.” This totally buzz killed the fact that he just got his drivers license. Speaking of which, letting your child take your car and pull out of the driveway, solo, is the scariest and most awful form of torture imaginable. When my dad used to hand me the keys he would say, “Drive reckless,” because that is what his dad said to him, knowing that saying “drive carefully,” is moot. Though, I don’t know about that because when I was sixteen I totaled my parents only car on the freeway. I sliced open my eyelid and woke up in an ambulance. Maybe my subconscious really did hear “drive reckless.”
2. I drove Lizzie to her first official, non-Quinn, babysitting job. She liked doing it a lot and told me that the younger son asked her if she was going to make babies one day.
3. Took Will to the dentist. Uneventful (though we did try to get Quinn in the chair, but his reply was a big HELL NO). I have got to get that kid brushing his teeth, a task he despises and I kind of freaked out my dentist by admitting that Quinn really doesn’t brush much, a guilt that was compounded by the fact that the boys Lizzie babysat for, reportedly, brush their teeth to a timer.
4. Made doctors appointments for all four kids. I already forgot about the one I made for William this week and am looking forward to a “no show” bill in the mail. I did spent the first full day of vacation paying off the medical bills from LAST summer, so might as well start a new tab.
5. Took Lizzie to the same doctor that I blew off because she was sick. He said it was viral, which I think was a lie because he might have been pissed about being stood up.
6. I’d like to say that I potty trained Quinn, but in reality, Luke potty trained Quinn. Three cheers to a huge age gap and no more diapers. I tried to put a diaper on the kid tonight just so that he would not wet my bed as he slept, but he tore it off and said that babies wear diapers, so fingers crossed that I don’t wake up in a puddle. By the way, he doesn’t sleep with me because I am all into co-sleeping. He sleeps with me because he does not have a room. Sean sleeps on the couch. It’s all backwards. Still . . . when I cozy up to Quinn at night he looks at me with his big watery blue eyes and says, “You came back. I love you all of the time,” and then he traces my eyebrows with his fat little toddler fingers and I am in heaven. I would also be in heaven if someone took a bulldozer to this house and gave us all our own rooms with a magical t.v. makeover.
7. Got a haircut. Sarah, the best hair cutting lady in the land, told me a heart wrenching story that lingered with me for days.
8. Started the middles on their guitar lessons (for the guitars they got for their birthdays a YEAR AGO).
9. Changed my Instagram name to KellyinRepeat. Follow me. It will be fun. Promise.
10. Tried on dresses for the weddings we get to attend this summer. I got stuck in a one in the fitting room at Boston Store this morning. It wasn’t difficult to get the dress on, but I think I stayed in it for a long while trying to decide if I looked like a hippo or if I just looked hip. I must have swelled up in the dress, it was so fricking hot in there. I couldn’t get my arms out of the holes and then I started to panic and sweat more and wrestle with the dress. I debated about shouting the word HELP, but just couldn’t bring myself to do it (it’s not like asking for toilet paper under the stall). By the time I finally wiggled out of the thing, I was beet red and I looked like Sandy Biggelow Patterson’s mugshot in Identity Thief.
11. Drove the kids and my mom to Chicago so that Will could be seen by a modeling agency (he is officially signed, yay). Construction workers whistled at my thirteen year old daughter and William stuck up for her by shouting back, “Hey, she’s like nine!” I am not quite sure which thing embarrassed her more.
12. Learned that an application of raw organic honey over teenage acne is a miracle cure. You are welcome, Lizzie.
13. I went back to my doctor who prescribed two anti-fungal medications for the next ninety days and took me off all sugar and yeast, with the exception of two fruits a day and vodka. The vodka was at my request because I told him that I can live without sugar and yeast, but I cannot live a summer without vodka. He said that as long as I stayed away from wine and beer, an occasional vodka with lemon would be okay. I left it at that and did not push it by asking if I could have a vodka with lemon every day.
14. I watched the most beautiful documentary called May I Be Frank about a man who transforms his life with the help of three young college aged kids. I loved it so much that I watched it two times in a row. At one point Frank, who is depressed and suicidal, says “I just always knew their would be a shift. Something, something would shift. I knew it somewhere deep in me and that is what got me up in the morning.” I know exactly what he means by the word shift because I have one coming and I am ready for it and I feel it in the same place Frank felt it. This movie made me proud to be a human.
14. I got all excited because I planned on going to see the Avett Brothers at Summerfest tonight and even though I hate Summerfest and heat and crowds and fried food, I am mad about Scott Avett. I told Luke, who went to the festival all day today, “If you see Scott Avett walking around tell him that your mom loves him so much.” Really? I couldn’t believe I said that so I texted Luke, “Ack. Don’t say that. Just get your picture with him.” Then I learned that I had my dates mixed up and that the Avett Brothers were here two days ago. Too bad. He would have really liked me.
So really there you have it. Luke can drive. Lizzie is babysitting. William is a model. Quinn can pee in a toilet. I can drink vodka. All the busy stuff is out of the way and now I can focus on what I want summer to be.
I will have more time to write. Yay. Thank you to those of you who have told me you love this blog and that you are reading it (in fact, Dan, if you are reading this, let Sarah name the baby). Every now and again I get kind of depressed that my eleven year old son has 276 Instagram followers and I only have 20 blog followers. I think when I hit 276 followers I will give away a free print (anything on Behance is yours). If I never get to 276, at least I have vodka.