Monday, May 24, 2010

A Crazy But Nice Day w/New Friends

We had a really nice day the other day, and best of all, it was a beautiful day (the kind that makes you grateful to be living in Vermont) and involved a playdate with a new (sort of) friend. We've been spending a lot of time with the community theater, and one of the kids, EC, in the play has been jiving with A. I know EC and his folks, P&J, because they are in my karate class and PC regularly beats me up when we spar. We are pretty much sparring buddies since we are the only two adults who are not black belts, so we match up well.

Also, R had to a go to some meeting up north all day, literally from early morning to evening, so I was riding solo. I'd assumed that she would be home in the late evening, when we were winding down for bed.

Anyway, I mentioned to P&J that the kids seemed to get along, and we decided on a playdate. They live nearby, and the date was set. I struggled with whether or not to include N, and at first decided to not include him. That way, he and I could go do something while A played with EC. N was really bummed upon learning this, as was A, a testament to what a great sister she is. She even lobbied for him. This, of course, put a wrench into my beautiful plan. Not only had I planned on spending the day with N, but I had already arranged for only A to play with E. What to do? We also were supposed to meet with NT to film the video, and I had a festival meeting to attend, which I didn't really have time to make.

Well, being the neurotic dad that I am, I contacted PC and put him on the spot. I asked if N could join in, giving him plenty of leeway to say maybe not this time, but PC is such a nice guy, he said it was fine. I felt bad, but N was so disappointed, and it broke my heart. When I told the kids about the change in plan, they were thrilled, and I suddenly had two hours of free time. Wow!

I was so happy that things worked out, that I decided to whip up a cake to bring over there. Our good friend KR had given us the recipe for rhubarb cake that was amazing, so I gave it a go with the organic rhubarb that she'd given us. I was crunched for time, and watched the clock tick away as the hour of our departure neared. It literally went down to the wire, and I pulled the cake out of the oven, put it in the car, and we left.

We went over to their house, which BTW is beautiful, such a nice location, and the weather was perfect. Sunny and cool/warm. Being the loser that I am, I forgot to put sunscreen on them, but I'm still adjusting to the arrival of Summer. Poor excuse, I know.

I left the kids with the intention of getting some stuff done at home, like building a barn, but ended up running around getting things for the house, including rope to prevent me from falling off the roof. I managed to do some work on the dormer, but before I knew it, I had to pick the kids up.

They had a lot of fun, and didn't want to leave, a good sign. What's really cool is that they were playing chess when I got there. Later I learned that they share a common interest in Harry Potter and Ben 10, so life was good. I was so glad that they had fun, and that N was included and it didn't make it difficult. Also, I really like P&J, and find it easy and enjoyable just hanging out with them and chatting. It was a really nice time and I wished I could have stayed longer, but we had meetings to attend. For the record, everyone liked the cake.

We jetted over to the garden to meet with NT, but she wasn't there. What's a bummer is that we saw her van at the store and I thought of going in and talking to her, but I assumed that she was en route to the garden, so rather than bother her, I just drove to the garden and waited. She never showed up because she had just come from the garden (we were a little late), and seeing that we weren't there, had left for other engagements. I should have...

One really bright note was that KR and JM were at the garden, so the kids got to hang out with them, and JM, who is in charge of music at the festival, asked A if she would play that day. She would play with KR, whose band would play backup. How awesome is that?

A was thrilled at the prospect, but bummed about missing NT, I could see her sitting patiently waiting for her on the grass. It bummed me out as I sat through the meeting, and I was noticeably distracted. The others must have been thinking, "Are we wasting your time here?" I felt bad, but felt worse for A. I excused myself early, I really didn't have to be there since the baking master couldn't attend, anyway, and gathered the kids in search of NT.

We stopped by her house and apologized profusely for missing her, and decided to shoot the video then and there. We sat in her van and improvised a scene, and it was a scream. It came out so well, and in retrospect, you realize things happen as they will, and maybe for a reason.

Still glowing from our awesome video shoot, we came home and decided to BBQ on our amazingly modern and high tech grill. I'd thawed out some of the amazing Cloudland Farm beef, got some Essem hot dogs from the store, and we were all set. We got the fire going, cooked the meal, and just as we were digging in, R came home from her meeting, and she was hungry. We'd had the foresight to make extra food in her honor, not really expecting her to be there, but not wanting to leave her out, either. We sat down to a fabulous meal, made s'mores over the hot coals, and then went to be.

So, in what originally began as a tense and anxious and crazy day turned out beautifully. I love when that happens.

Until the next time, thanks for reading, and thanks to Eva Schuster for the pic.

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