Sunday, March 19, 2017

9-Volt Batteries and Poster Boards

Spring Break always comes at the perfect time. Slogged through those opening days of school in January, had a few cold days in February and then, right when you need a break, it comes. That lovely week off in March where you can plan a ski trip or a beach trip . . . or stay at home and sleep late.

OK, not the Adams. G headed off to fish and Chris ventured off to Padre. The girls and I were home except for three early morning drives to gymnastics. Yes, for some reason, we had gymnastics for three hours each of those three days starting at 7 a.m. Camille and I were up and at 'em earlier than we are for school. She did it with no complaining and quite easily. She loves it. Really, she loves it. She's using words such as 'kip,' 'cast,' 'flat-out,' 'table' and other ones I don't think I would spell or punctuate correctly. We capped off our week with a team meeting where I learned other words -- compulsory -- and our payment plan (which is also compulsory. The girls have been studying homographs. Fun words such as bill and bill (again, a payment) and check and check (I could do this all day -- relating homographs to money. This gymnastics is real money. No homograph. I mean the only definition of money.).

All in all, a good week. G limited out on trout. Chris returned safely. And, we took a quick day trip up to Marble Falls to pick strawberries at Sweet Berry Farms and eat pie at Bluebonnet Cafe. I also convinced G to stop along the way a couple of times for me to look at vintage, metal outdoor chairs. $75 a piece and then $45 a piece didn't sound as sweet to G as the berries we picked.

Friday night, we laid our heads down to sleep relishing in a nice week and readying ourselves for sweet dreams. Then, because it was a time change recently and we are supposed to have some nifty downloadable pdf chart indicating when you change your AC filters, clean the coils in your refrigerator and change out the batteries in your smoke alarm . . .we were reminded we didn't do a single one, including the loudest one.

2:18 a.m. Shrieking sound from, yeah, you guessed it, the smoke alarm in the girls' room. I shot up and roused G (he can sleep through anything) and started standing under the smoke alarms throughout the house, looking up as if it would say 'hi, it's me. I need a new battery.' Suddenly, this right around 3000 square foot home felt like a mansion with complex hallway circuits and inter-dimensional worlds like The OA (yeah, watched that crazy show this week . . .what the!?). Because smoke alarms like to trick you and give you just a taste of what is ahead -- again something straight from The OA -- it stops, you believe it to be a fluke, go back to bed and. . .

2:24 a.m. The shrill sound of needing to replace a battery screamed to us again (why didn't I download an informative spring checklist from one of the many blogs I read. Wait, I did download and file away somewhere and just didn't do the checklist. One of many of my issues. Big plans, little action).

G got up this time, found a ladder and then gently removed the battery. Y'all, come on. He tore that thing down and ripped out the guilty culprit. A 9-volt battery. Upon further inspection, we noticed the hallway smoke alarm had the battery-holding contraption flopping around because we must have ripped that out at the falling-back time change. Another missing 9-volt battery.

Guess what we don't have any of? And, guess what likes to remind you it is missing a battery? How does it work without a battery? What kind of sensor does it have that it operates with a sweeter chirping sound, but a sound nonetheless? And, why was it just the one from the girls' room sending out that signal? How is that possible? Oh, wait, The OA might be sending me a message . . . a sixth movement? I should have learned that dance. I could have escaped to a place where sleep happened at 2:30 a.m.

Who has 9-volt batteries? We don't. Thankfully, Walgreens does in a three-pack. I think we have three. My early morn wandering helped me discover three. Are there more? Aren't there five movements? (OA reference, again.)

Let me tell you, a smoke alarm going off in the middle of the night, quick trips to Target, HEB and Walgreens weren't going to stop us from having the greatest fourth part of the day. You see a BBQ was in our plans for Saturday evening. We had invited over some friends as a rouse to wait for the friend of all friends. Saxon. Yep, she and her family (my friend, Anna!!) were coming to town for their Spring Break. Texts throughout the day were showing signs of a late arrival, but they were coming. Saxon was coming. Saxon was coming. Saxon was going to be at our house. Saxon was going to spend the night at our house. Saxon was going to eat lunch with us at school. Saxon was going to go swimming with us.

I think I answered the questions, 'what time is it' and 'how many minutes until Saxon is here,' too many times to count. So I had to distract.

The girls and I cleaned out their closet and drawers. We cleaned the room. We made beds. We organized the art center. Distract, distract. (Come on, could there be a more fun last Saturday of Spring Break activity. For me, yes. For the girls, eh, not so much.)

The girls helped me make a few things with the vast amount of strawberries we picked -- syrup, popsicles, dump cake. (We still have a lot of strawberries. What else?)

Distractions were wearing thin, but the question of Saxon's arrival continued.

The poster boards.

Yes, the poster boards.

Time to make signs to welcome Saxon.

That stop to Walgreens earlier for batteries, included scooping up a couple of poster boards. Bonus, since we cleaned the art center, we had plenty of room to spread out markers and Sharpies and crayons and stickers (because we organized and could find them) to make colorful, welcoming posters for Saxon and her family.

By 'we' I mean the girls because I was acting like Caroline 'Ma' Ingalls whipping up some strawberry goods from my harvest to store for the winter .  .  .

To make it through the next season.

To make it through the next time change.

To make it through another battery changing.

To make it through an it will come way too soon good-bye to our friend.

Spring Break. It always comes at the right time. It's just never long enough. It just doesn't have as many days as we need to have as many sleepovers as we want with a best friend.

Do they make a high-volt battery to help the sad chirp our hearts make when we see a best friend drive off to go back home (in another state)?

Do I need to run to Walgreens?

Do I need to buy tissue?

Do I need to distract until the summer when we have a much longer break that will be much needed and will have many sleepovers with a best friend?

OK, Ma, what do I make to store up for that?

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