Recently I wrote a sentimental mother’s Instagram caption: “Work is a blessing but I miss Jake and the munchkins… morning kisses goodbye are both difficult and cherished. We do family things during the week like board games and snuggling with movies, however, weekdays I’m exhausted and cranky after 70 minutes of daily commute M-F/9-5. There’s a lot of guilt that comes with leaving the boys during the day… we make up for family time on the weekends… and balancing family and work is tricky but after two months of returning to work we’ve found a good family rhythm.” It’s all true, working mothers (and fathers) can I get an Amen. My husband is staying home with the kids as a financial move for us to avoid daycare. I’m grateful to have been a SAHM for as long as I did but eventually health insurance becomes necessity and returning to work looms imminently on the horizon. For these reasons we do weekends BIG.
Some Friday’s are more Friday than others.
Friday, I worked as usual. We had a pot luck for a colleague leaving the clinic in pursuit of a career in micro-brewing and distilling. My addition was Jake’s “home run pies” (apple turnovers). They went like hotcakes. By now most of our office knows that Jake is trained in pastry arts and as usual they thoroughly enjoy his treats. The remainder of the work-day went at the speed of molasses on a January Michigan’s morning.
After a late Friday at the office I stopped at the high school athletic field. My coworker’s were there promoting the expansion and opening of our new physical therapy clinic in town. When the football game started I followed my co-workers to the field. Watching the game on the sidelines for injuries is a different experience than enduring a game on a cold metal bleacher. I was told that punting and field goals are the most likely times a player is injured, and that seeing the moment of impact is not as telling of an injury as the way a player gets up from the play. Within the first minutes of the game we heard the crashing of helmets, I flinched. Yellow flag thrown against the defense because from what I understand he lead with his head down and you can only hit what you can see. I silently wondered how I cheered on the sidelines for so many years without accurately knowing the game. Shortly after that play a punter was hit mid-kick, slamming the football into his shin, he proceeded to limp off of the field, and so it continued in this manner with brief bouts of commentary from our athletic trainers.
Nearing halftime I left the field, picked up my sons, and gave Jake some SAHD downtime. We moseyed over to the field in our hometown gear, Superman football in hand. The boys played catch during halftime and watch the “big kids” throwing footballs, 30 yards in awe.
At the bleachers upon sitting down we had a mommy-fail, I forgot a blanket. I also forgot to grab cash for popcorn and hot cocoa. Blame it on first game of the season, I won’t forget these things at the next game. The game was short of bathos and eventually hometown high school lost 43-zilch but it was a good experience for both the boys and myself.
After a restless sleep I was awoken by our sons running to the bedside yelling a triumphant two-part chorus of “Good Morning Mommy!” Hours before this I had laid awake in discursive work-related thoughts. Eventually I gave into the temptation of my phone’s brain-training apps. It was a groggy attempt at brain power which only lowered my average scores and furthered the insomnia.
Saturday morning came with Jake’s homemade gluten-free buttermilk biscuits, sausage patties, eggs-over-easy, and a sad sweet potato hash that died a salty death via Emeril Lagasse seasoning, BAM! After breakfast we drove to town for the Farmers Market. Picture it; micro greens, kombucha, maple syrup, heirloom vegetables, artisanal soaps and lotions, hand spun wool, etc. Our shopping resulted in a few bags of apples, mizuna lettuce, radish & sunflower sprouts, and some fresh caught and frozen white fish filets on ice from Lake Superior.
The boys enjoyed dancing to live music at the market and then we took them over to our the skate park for our Saturday morning ritual. Neither of the babes cried when we transitioned away from the skateboarders so we took our chances down at Harbor Fest in Marquette. They walked through the antique car show pointing out Disney/Pixar Cars and nearly lost it when they saw a Mater and a Doc Hudson. Cars were followed by one-hour wrist bands to the bounce house arena. Nate had us perplexed with his distaste for the bounce houses, eventually he warmed up to them but initially it was like pulling teeth. Leaving the bounces houses and Lower Mattson Park was not smooth sailing, tears and flailing were met with expedited car seat naps on the drive home.
The rest of the evening was spent cooking up our fresh filets and wild greens. They turned out fantastic, the mizuna and reddish spouts are a great contrast of crispy spice and zesty for the fish and tartar sauce. The night progressed into a night out at my dad’s house with some friends and siblings, the Mayweather fight, many appetizers and a large glass of wine..in the shape of an entire bottle of wine. By the way, The Federalist Red Zinfandel is great, full body fruity and refreshing, Yum!
We woke up post Pay-Per-View fight night feeling the divine punishment of wine and went out for breakfast with my dad and sister’s family. The day had a leitmotif of soft drizzle and overcast which was met with couch snuggles and a compulsive viewing of the Big Bang Theory. Nothing says rainy Sunday like leftover gluten-free buttermilk biscuit and homemade Chipotle Chicken Broth. Cleaning out my bulging-at the-seams pant and dress closet (spot the pun) in a half hazard konmari style was the perfect finishing lap in the relay. Another weekend met with alacrity.
Weekends, we own you!