Another busy Saturday... Paul's company was sponsoring a shoreline clean-up so he scooted out of the house at 8am with Oscar and Ruby and a collection of buckets, gloves, and shovels. Oscar was a tad reluctant at first and really wanted to know how long they would be cleaning up trash. We made the mistake of specifying an amount of time -- one hour -- so then he was fixated on how that seemed like way too much time. In the end though he had a good time and felt great about all the animals and birds he helped by cleaning up their habitat.
After shoreline clean-up, they joined me at Abe's soccer game, arriving just a few minutes after Abe, who plays goalie, had a big save...and jammed his fingers. Ruby plopped down on the moist grass and announced that she was going to change into her soccer uniform. When I looked up from helping Abe with the ice, Ruby was sitting right there on the sidelines in her candy-cane striped panties pulling her white soccer socks up over her thighs as high as she could get them, which was almost all the way. I wish I'd had the camera.
I scrambled off with Ruby to her game, where she ran around in a tight pack in 4 on 4 competition. This group doesn't play with goalies and is just learning the concept of passing, but the growth from last year in focus and stamina is amazing. Just before the second half the coach said "I know you're going to score a goal this half, Ruby, whaddya say?" He held his hand up for a high five and she jumped to slap it. Three minutes later she scored on a long kick through the pack. She was beaming!
When we finally got home I settled into a cushy living room chair to write while Paul headed outdoors to attempt to tame the garden. Oscar took a nap, Abe read, and Ruby played in her room. After his nap, Oscar joined Paul in weeding the front walk and I wandered out a little later to tackle some overgrown bushes. (These projects are so long overdue that we usually just stand at the edge of the yard, shake our heads, and go back inside.)
Right around 6pm, the time we should have been thinking about dinner, but weren't, Oscar started asking to go to the park to ride his bike. I was still outside clipping the rosemary and Paul was pulling out a rose bush that had damaged our fence. Oscar felt strongly and tears started springing out of his eyes as he made his case. This is not a terribly unusual scene, but what struck me was what he said in the best calm voice he could muster:
"I just don't get why every one else in the family got to do something they wanted to do today except me. This is the one thing I wanted to do today!"
While he was maybe being a teeny bit rigid, he had a darn good point and he articulated it beautifully. His siblings probably would have just said "It's NOT FAIR" and stomped off to their rooms.
So, guess what's at the top of the to-do list for tomorrow?
Oscar recovered quickly from his disappointment and we ended the day eating burritos atop a hill overlooking the San Francisco Bay. The sun set a bit to the right of the Golden Gate Bridge, disappearing through bands of pink and orange behind the shadowy Marin Headlands. Ruby and Abe kicked the soccer ball up and down the hill while Oscar counted the dogs and giggled at my silly jokes.
And Paul said, "Today was a pretty good day."