Tuesday, July 19, 2016

Dormant . . . but soon awakening

This blog has been hibernating.

Well, that's not quite right. It hasn't been sleeping for months, though there has been a fair bit of energy conservation. Perhaps I could spin it as cocooning, but the blog's not a chrysalis that will metamorphosize into a butterfly.

In truth, my blogging energies have been *temporarily* wrenched away toward other things. For example, I present Exhibit A:

Dormant baby as a Sour Patch Kids sorting table
Sleeping, and arrayed with pretty colors, but not becoming a butterfly. Though he seems occasionally to metamorphosize into a Sour Patch Kids sorting table.
The lil' scribbler has reached four months of age and he is, to put it bluntly, a time-suck. When awake he demands our attention. While his naptimes might provide good time for blogging, his are short and irregular catnaps. Someday in the future he'll undoubtedly trend toward a single morning nap and a single afternoon nap, but that day has not yet arrived.

Admittedly, the burden of baby care falls more on Kate because, y'know, breastfeeding and stuff. And let's face it, who do you trust more to trim tiny fingernails and toenails? But I can't really sneak off and leave her alone for the drudgery joy of entertaining an infant. Hey, keep that screaming kid away while I sit here and . . . blog.

That's not a good look as a father, I've found.

Along with the new kid comes the usual nesting and organizing. New drapes for the baby's room. New cabinets and bureaus to stash the big kid's toys and make room for the new kid's gear. Of course, with those quasi-necessary things Kate has we have somehow also snuck in new baker's shelves for the kitchen, new plants for the garden, and so on. The to-do list grows, never shrinks.

Jackson at the climbing gym
The photo we used for Jackson's birthday party invitation.
Just because we have bright and shiny Exhibit A doesn't mean we can neglect Exhibit B, the older kid. Jackson started school in January when we moved from Scotland to England, and school-age children seem to multiply the number of activities and overall busyness of afternoons and weekends (a.k.a., my prime blogging times).

Playdates, birthday parties, field trips, and PTA. We got our act together to produce a kick-ass birthday party for Jackson's fifth birthday (his first-ever birthday party) at a climbing gym, but wowzers did the planning/invitations/fretting/gift bags/cake/thank you cards/etc. gobble up time. And let's not forget the least favorite time-suck: homework.

(Ed.'s note: Who gives homework to kindergarten-age children?)

England, that's who. Not all the time. But every so often the kids get hit with six pages of work for a weekend. Or ten pages due next Wednesday. Or even eighteen f$!*%@ pages over a vacation week.

Nana and Grampa Bill take Jackson to school
Nana and Grampa Bill take Jackson to school.
I mean, isn't the point of the vacation to be a break from schooling?

But I digress.

What else has wrenched away my blogging hours? We've had the requisite visits with the grandparents (Exhibit C) for the new baby, with some de rigueur sightseeing thrown in.

Exploring the grounds of Berkeley Castle in Bristol, England
Nana and Grampa Bill explore the grounds of Berkeley Castle, north of Bristol. Grampa Bill, our genealogy buff, informs us that we have ancestors who once lived in the castle.
Similarly, Exhibit D: travel and sightseeing eats up a fair bit of our time. We've tried to put Kate's maternity leave to good advantage by exploring southwestern England, whether around town in Bristol or nearby in the Cotswolds, or even further afield in Cornwall.

Kynance Cove in Cornwall, England
The captivatingly beautiful Kynance Cove in Cornwall, England.
Jackson levitates above the beach in St. Ives, Cornwall
On a beach in St. Ives, we learned he can levitate!
But all those things — new baby, older kid starting school, visitors, and travel — pale in comparison to the giant time-suck time waster recipient of my devotion. Exhibit E is . . .

Kate, of course.

Kate
Who, me?
Now, I'm not saying she doesn't allow me to blog while she's home. That wouldn't be accurate.

It's not quite true she would frown upon it.

But let's say that life goes more smoothly if I'm putting my full efforts and energy toward her the baby and our chores and our family activities. Fewer eye rolls and sighs.

(Ed.'s note: She will deny this. Vociferously.)

Ohh, I know.

And so, until Kate returns to work from maternity leave in September, things round these parts may be scarce. I'm gonna try to eke out a post here and there, but no promises.

Then in September, I'm sure I'll have oodles and oodles of time for blogging while taking care of an infant all day. Right?


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