Tuesday, April 27, 2010

EXPECTATIONS...never a good idea

i have this thing that i do. i build moments up so that the expectations for the moment end up taking over the reality of the moment. i do this, at some point, every day. this thing that i do gets especially out of control during the different holidays. and i add pressure to myself by thinking that i have to capture these perfect, meaningful," thekidswillneverforgetthis" moments on camera. what is this really about? for now, i'm content to just tell the story.

after school yesterday, the kids and i gathered in the backyard to enjoy the perfect weather. this started out innocent enough. the older three were playing their various loves. colt with a ball and glove in hand, throwing off the house; chase tinkering and meandering and loving being chase; and aiden trying to keep up with her oldest brother in between the pull for her affections by the ds; and lastly, but not leastly...annslee in the excersauser...totally engrossed with her bee and flower that always magically flit around her while in this lovely, treasured seat. ahhhh...a peaceful afternoon to sit on the patio and read my new people magazine that has been anxiously awaiting my attention since i plucked her from the magazine rack in the target line that morning. i sit down, smile at annslee and her bee next to me and begin to thinklessly read about angelina and brad's brood. and then it happened. a little, neighbor girl from chase's class showed up with another little boy from chase's class and his twin sister. well...if the backyard is going to become non-peaceful...i might as well text my brother's love and the 2 girls she watches to come play too. (we had discussed getting together during pick up an hour earlier.) i begin to picture pottery barn kids backyard playtime, complete with lemonade, laughter and good conversation. i leave colton in charge of puddie while i go in to make a big pitcher of lemonade, (mistake #1 due to him getting sidetracked by the pitcher's mound) and pull out a tray and cups for everyone. kevin's love and i block annslee from getting pelted by a line drive, as baseball became the game of choice, and i pour the lemonade. at this point, my poor people magazine had been tossed to the ground...pages blowing in the wind...feeling totally neglected. instead of good conversation, we had colt bossing everyone around like they were members of his little league team, chase hitting colt with the plastic bat due to such bossing, lemonade spilling all over the patio, empty cups blowing down the driveway, sisters fighting, annslee spitting up, and other less than perfect situations that i have chosen to block from my memory. what just happened here? how did we go from pottery barn/lemonade fun to complete chaos and hysteria? c.c. took care of puddie while i tried to do my part and play on the little girl's, non-stacked team to help the goingdownhillfast situation...but we still ended up with kids stomping off the field (yard) and going home due to boredom (hurt feelings). after everyone is gone, i survey the damage, clean up the spilled lemonade...that no one said thank you for, by the way...and pick up plastic cups from all over the yard (front and back). the reality is that the kids did have fun. they did like the lemonade. i did get to enjoy the company of c.c. i did get to play ball with my kids. and the best part...they have never even seen the pottery barn kids catalog to know about backyard/lemonade perfect playtime, so they don't know that any expectations went unmet. and me...next time, i'll put out some water, smile at puddie and her bee next to me, flip the pages of my people to the sounds of fighting kids, and save the expectations for the next holiday.

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