Posted by: Kate | October 12, 2009

Great, Heaping Piles of Quaint

I just had one of those weekends which, taken piece by piece, was completely non-noteworthy. No out-of-town adventures, no major purchases, no big events. But as a whole, it was pleasant and peaceful and sort of quintessentially New England, and worth noting just for that.

Saturday, Jenny brought her two older kids up this way (her youngest is a bit past a year old and not quite in the target audience for our plans for the day) and we headed up to one of those farms that decorates and runs hayrides and hires bands and generally makes an event out of the weekends leading up to Halloween. My kids are 9 and 5, hers are almost-8 and 4, so they create this ragtag little group that alternately entertains itself and bosses itself around, and is right in the target age range for hayrides. For me, perching on a hay bale and being dragged at 0.2 mph behind a tractor for 20 minutes is a nice enough change of pace, I suppose… but for them, this was high adventure, scenic, imaginative, risky… just a whole lot more magical. We picked out pumpkins – my rule this year was that my kids had to be able to carry their own choices to the car, which is the only reason Emily did not end up with a 50-pound monstrosity – and left before the creator of the “live music” moved from reasonably pleasant to grating. Perfect.

I think, at this point, the hayride had become a spy transport, and they were on the lookout for bad guys. Or ghosts. Or both.

From there we went to a fabric store, let the kids go through the overstimulating and multifaceted decision-making process involved in deciding on a Halloween costume. My kids have been through this routine before – I haven’t yet considered buying storebought costumes, and it’s only been recently that they’ve realized such a thing actually exists – but Jenny’s kids had not, so I had to drag them through the heartbreak which is moving from a complicated, detailed, high-end vision to the simple reality that I’m actually willing (and able) to create. But they figured it out, and over the course of the next few hours, the kids entertained themselves and Jenny and I became costume-making machines. Jenny is a fast learner, and I am a stubbornly lazy seamstress, so it all came together nicely.

Jenny’s daughter opted for a bath instead of a movie – we don’t need logic here – and Jacob apparently decided to join her. But, being a gentleman, he left his shirt and underwear on. May he make the same sorts of decisions in college…

Jenny’s kids chose to be a snow leopard and sorcerer, respectively. I’ll post my kids’ costumes when it’s closer to The Big Day.

Sunday was quieter… so much so that I can’t quite remember what we did in the morning. In the afternoon, the kids and I went shopping, for odds and ends needed to complete their costumes, for groceries, for maternity bras… you know, the usual. After dinner, we decided to take advantage of an extra weekend night and let the kids stay up late to watch E.T. for the first time. They are both at the perfect age for this movie; it’s just scary enough to keep them on edge but not so much so that we had to diffuse nightmares later on.

I wish Steven Spielberg could have watched Jacob watch this movie – I think he would have been pleased at just how thoroughly Jacob was able to suspend disbelief.

Monday has been something of a flop, especially in comparison with the prior two days. I woke up with a killer migraine, which I can’t seem to quite get ahead of (something about not taking my typical medications while pregnant, I suspect), and Willem and I have been edgy with each other for no good reason… but that all just seems fair, sort of payment for a weekend well-lived.


  1. I wish we lived somewhere that we could do hayrides and apple picking. But Central Texas is just not the right place.

  2. That snow leopard costume makes me feel really guilty about taking the kid to Old Navy and letting her choose the hideous pink butterfly costume-if only I could sew!

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