Skip to main content

Before Breakfast


The sun is shining through the windows in the bedroom. It's a perfect morning. I put my feet on the floor to begin the day and step on tufts of dog hair. It's a perfect morning to give Henrie a bath. Lauren gathers up the dog brush, the shampoo, the towel and the leash. I gather up the dog and attach her to the leash on the back patio. Claire turns on the hose.

Lauren runs water over Henrie's back. Henrie twists and pulls away from the spray. I pull her back. The black carpet that is her fur repels the water. It runs onto the patio. It soaks into my pajama bottoms. The sun is warm so I don't mind the cold water. Charlie comes outside carrying a fork and spoon. "Get me some breakfast." When he sees the hose, he drops the silverware and wants to help. Lauren hands him the hose and he turns me into a contestant for a wet tee shirt contest. I am glad for the privacy of our backyard.

Lauren unscrews the top on the shampoo bottle. Faith, Claire and Charlie reach out their hands to help work the soap into lather. Ten hands massage Henrie. She seems resigned to it. The puddle that is collecting in the low spot distracts Charlie. He wades in. He jumps. Faith and Claire join him. They kick...water sprays up and splashes over their heads.

Lauren holds the hose over Henrie. I work the soap out of her fur. Our heads are close together as we work. Twice we bump foreheads. Charlie brings a bowl over. He sets it down in front of Lauren. "I want big water!" Lauren obliges...or tries to. The force of the spray sends the bowl careening across the deck. Charlie thinks this is hysterical. He brings the bowl back, "Do it again, Lauren!"..."Again!"..."Again!"

It takes a lot of rubbing and a lot of water before Henrie's fur begins to feel clean. The hose is turned over to the little ones who take turns spraying golden arches of water over their heads. I dry the dog with a big green towel. She shakes. When I open the door to the house she rolls and slides on the carpet to dry some more.

The little ones drip to the garage to remove wet clothing. They wrap up in fluffy towels and head to the shower. I go to my end of the house to shower and change. Lauren takes maple scones out of the oven. John gets up. It is a perfect morning!

Posted by Picasa

Comments

Popular posts from this blog

Spelling Wisdom

One day while skipping around the internet, I came across these:




And when I clicked on the sample, I knew we had to change spelling curriculums. Again. Goodbye Spelling Power and MacMillan and Sequential Spelling! We've found our true love.

The problem with the afore mentioned curricula is sheer boredom. Memorizing lists of words is mind numbing and as my children don't like their school work to lull them to sleep, they often push spelling to the side in favor of more exciting lessons.

When I found Spelling Wisdom, I realized what has been missing: an idea, something to engage the mind so that learning the difference between than and then occurs almost incidentally.

Sandra Shaffer uses the writings of famous men and women (Helen Keller, Beethoven, Winston Churchill...), Bible passages and quotes from quality literature...poems and novels (Robinson Crusoe, The Five Little Peppers and How They Grew, All the World's a Stage...) to teach more than six thousand frequently used word…

This Week

This week, I let a kindergarten kid play with my iPhone to coax him into the tutoring classroom.  I set up a plan for dealing with this ongoing issue and consulted with his mama.  She’s a tough one to get to know, his mama, but I try.
This week, I promised two little boys I would pick them up on Friday and take them to my house.
This week, on a crazy afternoon, a granny asked me for alcohol and I thought.  I wish!I could use a swig.  But that's not what she meant.  She was looking for rubbing alcohol or hydrogen peroxide to take care of an injured kid.  A few months ago, we were awkward because we didn't know each other but now the awkwardness is gone and I can’t help but hug her every time I see her. I love that granny. 
This week, I dropped off a little girl and shook hands with her father.  His hand was dry, he had a tattoo on his neck and he's just fresh from jail.  He asked how his daughter was doing in class and they both basked in the rain of praise.
This week, a …

Mr. Morse and Mr. Gilbreth

Stuart rang this morning, "Have you seen the Google homepage yet?"

We had. John did a little Gollum dance in front of the computer to let us know. "Come quick! Hurry!"



Morse code. The kids all joined John in his little Gollum dance to celebrate their new favorite form of communication.

We read Cheaper by the Dozen a few years ago when the little ones were too little so, my chore time pep talks, "Frank Gilbreth would roll over in his grave if he saw you clearing that table one plate at a time," only generated blank stares. Finally, after Mr. Gilbreth came up for the twentieth time Faith got curious. "WHO is Frank Gilbreth and WHY do you keep talking about him?"

Out came Cheaper by the Dozen . We rolled our way through the chapters, holding our sides. A story of a motion study pioneer who practiced his techniques on himself and his supersized family with hilarious results. A born teacher, a man who made the most of his time. We were spellbound. When w…