OMG, I had SOOOOO much fun on Wednesday!


OMG, I had soooooo much fun on Wednesday! And boy did I need it. So as you may know, or probably don’t, I have been expressing a fair amount of frustration and angst and just general freak-out over the particulars of my life as of late. However, coffee in the morning and Grey’s Anatomy on Thursday night with my peeps (woot woot! Lesley and Erin!) aside, there is one other bright and shiny moment in my week. And that is the two hours I get to spend with my dear friends, Camila and Gael. And oh, what an awesome two hours it was!

Every week, I pick them up from school on Wednesdays and on the way home in my car, we make our “game plan.” The first week I picked them up, I told them that I had a game plan, and Camila said, “what’s that Leila?” (try if you will, to imagine her adorable five- year-old voice. Nope, you can’t do it. Sorry. You’d have to literally hear it to believe it.) Anyway, I explained what a game plan is (that particular day it was VERY HOT. So our game plan involved finding some gelato. Which we all agreed was a VERY GOOD game plan. So Camila had peppermint, Gael had chocolate (he always gets chocolate) and I had ginger – yum!

Anyway, this week I picked them up as usual and as soon as they got in the car and we drove away, Gael asked me, “what’s our game plan today, Leila?” (In an equally cute voice).  So I said, “well, what do you think our game plan should be?” Also, they asked me if they still lived in their old neighborhood (they used to be my next door neighbors). And if they still lived in Portland and in Oregon. And so we decided that our game plan would be:

  1. Camila and Gael will show me their Halloween costumes.
  2. We will all have a snack (I like after-school snacks too, even if I don’t go to school.)
  3. Gael will play the piano for me. (He’s amazing. Really amazingly good!)
  4. I will draw a map and show them their old house, their new house, our location on the freeway when we had this discussion, their school and the position of their house in Portland and in Oregon.
  5. We will play “hide and go seek” – Gael’s game choice.
  6. We will play “hopscotch tag” – Camila’s choice.
  7. We will play with their new games, from their birthday presents – my choice.
We never got to seven. But one through six were just fine. More than fine. Sublime. Supreme. Stupendous. I don’t know what I’d do without these guys. They are saving my life.

Camila didn’t actually show me her costume, because she was playing with her doll house, which is a current obsession of hers. Gael put on his Darth Vader outfit for me and I taught him how to say, “Luke, haaah haaah haaah (breathing), I am your faaaaaa-thar, haaah haaah haaah.”  Then Gael said, “Luke, haah haah haah, I am your father.” And I said, “no, no, no, no,  you have to say it REALLY SLOOOOOOW. ‘Faaaaaaa-thar,’ like that.” After two or three more tries, he basically got it. I think he’ll be ok.

Next, we had: Gael – a fried egg with tortilla chips, Camila – corn on the cob, and me – a yummy lentil salad that Julia or Luis left in the fridge. (Thanks guys!).

Then, Gael played “Somewhere Over the Rainbow” with chords (remember, he’s FIVE), then he played “My Favorite Things,” the Coltrane version (just kidding).

Then I drew a map, and we made crazy little roads that connected their old house to their new house and their school to their new house. And then they asked me where Uncle Jamie’s house in Wyoming is. So I preceded to draw Idaho, Montana, Utah, Nevada and Wyoming. Of course, I put Wyoming EAST of Montana instead of SOUTH. Oops. But I figured it out and we fixed it.

Then, we played hide and seek and I explained the part about reaching home and yelling “Ollie Ollie Oxen Free.” Which was always the most fun part of the game. We hid behind the doors and under the chairs and in the closets and behind the table and we ran and yelled and ran out of breath and laughed and giggled. And giggled. And giggled. And I almost felt like a kid again. It was marvelous.

And then we played “hopscotch tag,” which is where you jump through the hopscotch as quick as you can while someone jumps behind you as fast as they can and tries to catch you. I never caught anyone. Camila and Gael caught me. Over and over and over and over. They are MUCH faster jumpers than me. Also, Camila drew the hopscotch, so some squares were gigantically huge and others were itty, itty bitty! So I think that gave them the advantage. Just saying.

We never got to number seven because Luis came home during number six and then I had to go home and make dinner and help Maddy with her homework and do my math lesson for Joey’s algebra class (graphing exponential functions and their inverses) and fold the laundry…. I wanna play hopscotch.

It’s Saturday at 10:49pm as I write this and I console myself with the fact that I only have to wait three days and seventeen hours until I get to play again. Ollie Ollie Oxen Free!

 

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About Leila

I am a wife and mother. I am an Orthodox Christian. I am a Syrian American with family living in Syria. I am a also a yoga teacher and freelance writer. I recently described myself in a job pitch as "a person who's lived in Portland, Oregon for over 20 years with a passion for writing and a passion for all things Portland. I'm a foodie, knitter, wine and beer lover, bee-keeper (yep, I said it), mead and fruit-liqueur maker, organic gardener, home-canner, hiker, biker, runner, and occasional skinny-dipper. I’ve camped all over the state, I sail a sailboat that’s moored on the Columbia (o.k., I'm the first mate), and I spend a large percentage of my time at our beach house in Seaside." That about sums it up.
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