Sunday, October 7, 2012

A Boy's Life

This has been such a busy, fun week! Besides the field trips I went on with Connor and Mathilda, lots of other stuff was going on too. Connor & Lucy's school had a Fun Walk fundraiser, so Mattie & I went in to walk with the kids. They take the "fun" part pretty seriously! Music was blasting as the kids walked laps both inside and out (the exterior gym doors open to our brand new outdoor track), and there were a few dances that each class did too, such as the Hokey Pokey and the Cupid Shuffle. I almost beat myself up for not getting in enough work outs this week, but I think walking the equivalent of a mile or two while holding a 30-something pound kid most of the way has to count for something!

Connor at Camp Agawam
Connor recently joined Cub Scouts (Boy Scouts? I'm so confused!). I do realize that at age 9, he is a little late in joining this group, but believe me when I tell you I had been trying to convince him to join since he was in 1st grade. This year I didn't say anything, but he brought home a flier one day and said he was interested, so here we are. Friday night he had his first popcorn-selling stint at our local Kroger (thanks to my mom for taking him!), and Saturday was the Trail Blazer Adventure Day for all packs in the area. Since Chris was traveling for work, I was elected by default to take Connor. Let me elaborate. I was elected to find a sitter (once again, thanks mom!), get up at 6:00 AM on a Saturday, pack lunches, drive over 40 miles each way, and stand in long lines all day, freezing my toosh off.

I was kind of looking forward to Trail Blazer day until Friday night, when a couple monkey wrenches were suddenly tossed into our plans. Then I was a little annoyed, and I struggled to keep a good attitude because this was something Connor was excited to do.  I decided to embrace this time I had to hang out with Connor, and to do my best to make sure we had a great day. My determination was tried when, after we had been waiting for a very long time in the archery line, a dad thought it would be a great idea to bring over the group of 10 kids he had with him and cut in front of us, since he knew someone in line. I wasted some time being ticked off, got over it, and went on to have a wonderful day with my son - in spite of the early hour, the cold, the lines, and the minor frustrations that sometimes go hand-in-hand with doing anything for the first time.

At the end of the day, I was so glad I went. When I asked Connor what the best part of the day was, and he said "everything", I knew that all the effort was more than worth it. We hiked in the woods, saw demonstrations by costumed volunteers at Fort Pontiac, went fishing, and laughed a between waiting in ridiculously long lines so Connor could try out archery, fly fishing, and shooting. While I waited in line, he played in the woods with the other kids and I realized how entertaining sticks truly are for boys, which is to say, very entertaining. On the way home, we stopped at Tim Horton's for hot chocolate. It was a long, lovely day. And I have the runny nose to show for it.

Fun day at Camp Agawam

I have been mom to a son for over nine years now, but little boys are still something of a mystery to me. The big difference in my house is that my girls constantly tell me exactly what they want and what they think about everything. I mean, they never stop talking. Connor, on the other hand, is not so forthcoming with the chit-chat. And because he is naturally more quiet, more introverted, and more shy than his sisters, he does not always assert his thoughts, wishes, and needs. To do so would mean working his way through the loud onslaught of girly buzzing that is pretty much a constant in our home. Rarely do I get a chance to just be with him, and let him get around to opening up on his terms, in his own time, with no interruptions from the gals. Camp Agawam's Trail Blazer day gave me that opportunity, and now I know that I need more. This whole week was full of wonderful one-on-one time with my kids. But this particular day was maybe the best in that regard, because Connor and I had over eight hours together, just he and I, with no other kids to divide my attention (like at the field trips). Being so busy and having four kids who all need me, finding that kind of time is a real challenge, but I am going to try harder.

I'm curious, how do you fit in quality one-on-one time with your kids?

1 comment:

Joe said...

Special times Alysia; as the sixth child of nine, even at 58 years old, I still remember and cherish, the one on one times I had with my Mom and Dad.