Wednesday, May 27, 2015

Pioneers with technical backpacks

Not a lot to say right now. Everything is fine, but busy.

Duchess is off on an overnight fieldtrip - it's Oregon Trail-themed. I left her at school yesterday dressed like this. (She's using her brand-new enormous backpack that we just purchased for the backpacking camp she's attending later this summer. It has very little in it, but she wanted to try it out.)






































Also, here is another photo of Duchess's haircut. 


Saturday, May 2, 2015

Just punching my card today



  • We're busy. 
  • I just finished a big deadline at work, and am picking up all the other things I abandoned in order to get the big one done. That feels both pretty good and also scary, as many of those little things have become bigger things...
  • The weather is gorgeous. 
  • Yesterday Skipper started plucking at the strings of my very-neglected guitar, crouching beside it and listening intently to each note ring out and fade. "Mom, I'm listening to The Whole Sound!" she said. 
  • Skipper has been enthusiastically playing a game she was given for her birthday, which is like Uno in that all her family members are willing to play it; it's a pleasant, not-too-taxing mix of luck and strategy.
  • Duchess has nothing to show for hours spent working with her partner on an engineering-y science fair project, because neither of them are interested in taking the time to READ THE DIRECTIONS or to be at all careful in construction, so their constructions keep disintegrating. I'm happy to go with natural consequences here, but Cook pointed out that Duchess, due to her tendency to be satisfied with pretty much anything, never actually learns anything from natural consequences. That is why he is in the living room with her while she builds, monitoring her for slap-dash heedlessness, and I am in here, blogging.
  • Last week Duchess and I had a terrible morning (Skipper and Cook usually leave about 20 minutes earlier than we do, because the girls' schools are on different schedules) in which she aggressively and irrationally blamed me for the disappearance of the raincoat which she wanted to bring in case of rain. I totally lost my temper. On the walk to school, she was trying to chat about something, and I told her "I'm having a really hard time just conversing with you right now, because I'm still feeling pretty mad about being yelled at and blamed for stuff that's not my fault. I need to finish being mad before I can be pleasant. Do you understand how I feel?" and she said (I'm paraphrasing, but this is pretty close) "Yeah. You were trying to get lots of stuff done and you were doing stuff for me, and you were stressed out and it makes you angry when I blame you for stuff that's not your fault. I can see why you're so mad. I'm sorry I did that." I was pretty staggered. Duchess's deep flexibility and willingness to see other perspectives, while sometimes worrisome (as when she sees the perspective that an extremely sloppily-executed science fair project is really no big deal), allows her (when she's in the mood) to be sincerely sensitive and generous in her relationships in a way that makes her sound like she's read a bunch of therapy books.
  • However, I still don't know what she did with the raincoat. I suspect she lost it, which is why she so badly wanted it to be my fault...