At 6:30 D is already downstairs playing with Legos and talking to himself. A comes into our bedroom and announces the time like a town crier.
I'm glad A is feeling better. He missed two days of school with a fever. I think D really liked those days because he got to stay close to his brother, read books and watch videos all day. Today they are both going off, A back to school, D on an exciting preschool field trip to the science museum.
At breakfast we read our African American biography for the day: Wilma Rudolph. A is interested, D continues to play with Legos.
A is excited about having been in the U.S. for nine months. I ask him if he's missing anyone from Ethiopia. He nods, and D says his grandfather's name. I ask them what their grandfather is like. A says he is nice. It's very rare for him to share any kind of memories, but today he tells me that their grandfather used to bring them cow meat. They put pieces of the meat on sticks and roasted it over the cooking fire in their house. I savor this mental image.
A asks if he can get a ride from me to school instead of riding the bus. I say yes, but soon he's freaking out that we'll be late. I have him look at me and take some deep breaths. Usually this is something I do with D, but today it works with A. We get to his school in plenty of time, then I take D to preschool.
He gets clingy when we go in and I stay with him as the teachers get the children ready for the field trip. When it's time to go on the bus his love of vehicles wins over and he gets on with a big smile on his face.
I now have the morning to do some things I can't do with a kid around. I edit a piece of writing for T; have an actual adult conversation with a friend; take the dog for a long walk; do an online job search; spend forever on the phone with my health insurance company, who can go die in the fiery pits of hell.
A gets out of school early today, so I go pick him up. He tells me about taking the ACCESS test. We have lunch, then do some make-up work for the days he missed. He does his math first; he loves math. We work on reading until he slides face down to the floor. The floor is his go-to place when he is feeling stressed. I talk him up to the chair, then to a sitting position, then to stating what he needs. He's tired and wants to stop. I agree that it's a reasonable request, and we stop. I'm proud that he was able to manage this stressful moment.
Soon it's time to go get D. He usually gets out of preschool at 12:30, but because of the field trip, today he's not done until after 2:30. He's excited to see us, and excited to tell us all about the bus and the museum: a T-Rex! and a Triceratops! and butterflies! and it was so hot in the butterfly house I said, 'wheewwww!' and the bus was SOOOO high! and I bounced in my seat! and I touched a turtle! and a rabbit! and I saw a moose standing very still behind a glass!
I had planned for them to have some rest time now, but we see some neighborhood friends and invite them over. Then it's time for swimming for A and basketball for D at the YMCA. A has mastered kicking and is quite the little speedboat in the water. D looks like most of the other boys in his 3-5-year-old class, alternating cute, clumsy attempts at dribbling with spinning in circles in his own little world.
We come home and I get dinner ready while the boys play with/argue over Legos and draw. We have dinner as soon as T gets home, then I go back to the Y for a summer camp information session. T gets the boys ready for bed and they are watching videos when I get back. D has had a long day and I take him to bed early. We read a book, and I stay with him until A comes to bed and they both fall asleep. I sit with T for a while, but in nine months I still haven't figured out how to reliably fit in quality time with my husband. I'm too sleepy now and soon I'm in bed.