Wednesday, March 19, 2008

Home and rain

The four-year-old woke at 5:30 this morning. That's right on the cusp of when he can and can't hop into our bed and snuggle. I was beat and wholly inattentive from trying to get the baby to sleep from 1:30 to about quarter to four, so he and his pillow and his bear and tiger friends slipped in before I could escort them back out.

He doesn't really snuggle silently, that's part of the problem. He tries to engage his dozing parents in conversation about whatever is exciting to him at that very second. He cannot contain his enthusiasm, even at the crack of dawn and with encouragement from Mom and Dad. He is also extremely kinetic at that hour, often spearing a parent with an errant elbow (or worse). So be it. He is a four-year-old, and his mother handles it a lot better than I do.

I brought my pillow and blanket to the couch. Since I'm bald and it's cold, I get completely under the blanket except for a small opening for my mouth and nose. I must look like a large pink fuzzy boulder on the sofa. Only the four-year-old sees me, at precisely six-thirty. He doesn't think it looks strange and he's more interested in his computer anyway, so sometimes I continue my rock-like status after I've gotten his fruit and brew coffee later on.

We looked at the weather report for today on my Dashboard widget. It very clearly had thunderstorms and lightning in the illustration. The four-year-old and I walked onto the back porch to discover the weather was weird and grey and warm and hesitant. We decided to drive to school in case it burst into rain on the way.

Smart Wife took the baby grocery shopping and saved a lot of money with coupons and specials. (We like thrifty shopping around here, since she's made it into a fine art.) I called retirement communities and emailed people about an upcoming show while they were out. I periodically walked out on the porch and tested the air for rain.

The baby and I sat outside for what seemed like an hour, watching the cars go by from the front porch and listening to the birds on the back. The air was heavy and I was able to wear a t-shirt comfortably, while my wife went for a run. The baby was quiet and satisfied; I even tried to get her to wave to the passing motorists without much protest on her part.

We picked up the four-year-old after school and bought me some shoes, all the time the sky glowering and the air bursting with moisture. Smart Wife and I shared dinner duties tonight, always nice; she made the chicken strips, I did the boiled potatoes and asparagus. After a bath shared momentarily with his baby sister, the four-year-old got a few chapters of "Rebecca of Sunnybrook Farm" (the Illustrated Classics edition) before he dropped off to a deep sleep, hopefully packed with active dreams and happiness that will incline him to sleep just a little bit later.

I sat down at the computer to blog, and the rains came. Slow and steady, loud enough to sound like typing or drumming outside. Whatever it was I was going to write about washed away with the downpour, and I was able to sit back and think yet again of how much I love my life and my home and my family and all my friends, and how much especially I love the sound of the rain.