The imps both lay sleeping, soundlessly snugged up in blankets on the couch. They drifted off cosy in our nest as I prepar dinner from the garden and nature documentaries play on the TV: belly's full of fruit and cake. Each afternoon since school began last week I have dug my heals in and said no to TV and playstation after school. None at all, not a drop - just music and audiobooks and other more meaningful activities. The impact it has had is as I expected, they are less manic, massive relief! But today the boy took a nasty tumble on the unfriendly concrete of the school playground and so I wanted him to rest. If there is one DVD that I can guarantee will grip them in a good way, interest and intrigue them, get their inquisitive minds enquiring it is Life of Mammals. Vivid imagery and the soothing voice of David Attenborough. They really love it. Zander too was watching Horizon the other night - about the plight of bees and he seemed to be recalling extraordinary facts with surprising precision, his mind is hungry for factual information and it wants to rebel and freak out when bombarded with cartoons for cartoons sake. So that is exclusively Daddy's bag. He puts cartoons on when I am at work and so I have no guilt in depriving them of these when I'm on duty! Our influences balance each other out and I can live with that - the imps will thank me when they are older.
Last days. Of summer, of having my baby girl at home during the week .... I am feeling conflicted within, at odds, jagged edges. No wonder. Seasons of my life change as the seasons of the year do too, Autumn is infusing my home and my heart ... I want to wear jumpers and fill the house with smells of baking. It is comfortable, even when it rains, comforting perhaps in a strange way.
The last day of the summer holidays was truly the last day of summer ... made the most of with a paddling pool party ...
And those last weeks were the ones I embraced so much more convincingly than the ones that came before. The knowing that the end was in sight made them more precious than my complacent imaginings that the summer holidays last forever ... as they did in my childhood. Perspective changes. We spent hours playing games and I embraced spontaneity, or rather the art of appearing to be spontaneous!
Breakfast fire in the garden
Breakfast in the woods
I got me this thing about spontaneous breakfasts in particular. I guess its the least likely time of day to get up and do something exciting and unexpected so the impact the children feel is greater. It's been so much fun and going out very first thing we are full of energy and good vibrations and we are home by lunch time, thus the day elongates and feels so timeless and infinite. Yes! I am mastering the art of manipulating time!
Dude! Rainbows in porridge!
Zander brought me a handful of sage and said he'd picked it so I could make a sage bundle ... what perfect thoughtfulness ... he knows me, so very well. Be still my heart.
I made this Tee-pee when they were oh so small, from branches of trees we cut right back in the front garden. Somehow, it seems poetic and fitting that as my last baby goes off to school things shift shape, I dismantled it today. Half coming down anyway it seemed to be calling quietly to me to be re-imagined into something new and exciting for them. A reminder that things are impermanent - like the sinew the American Indians make their dream catchers from - it is only meant to last a while and will wither away with weather as the child grows. I feel this here. The possibilities for this space are exciting.
Autumn starts to infuse our nest and I welcome her as I did when I was a child. For different reasons but all the same she's here again.
... but thank you my darlings for a wonderful summer. Thank you for all that you've taught me, the challenges you've brought me (no really!).