perspective.

it's tuesday evening.

i was going to say something else entirely tonight, but this afternoon was a 2nd grade homework disaster.  again.  we have 30 people coming for dinner on friday to celebrate the sukkot holiday and also (or more so) bennett's birthday.  we're having lasagna and garlic bread on friday for dinner, and a smorgasbord of desserts by request of the birthday boy.  but because i spent sunday being spontaneous (we went to the rv show), i'm all behind on the week, and so the supplies for making friday's dinner and desserts were not in the house.  i spent this afternoon on a 5th grade field trip to see the work of a scottish stone mason, and we have people coming for dinner tomorrow (just two, but still) to celebrate the start of the holiday.  i didn't know what i was cooking for tomorrow's dinner until an hour ago.  the sukkah isn't finished.  lucy's school gets out (for the rest of the week) at lunchtime tomorrow.  and there was no gas in my car.  

not to mention the fact that i signed myself up to bake for the school bake-sale on friday.  and the tire-pressure light on my dashboard came on this morning, just before i had to drive four 5th graders to see the dry stone wall.  (i added air, thanked the heavens for my father's tire-pressure gauge which lives under the passenger seat of my car, and all was right on the dashboard again.)

and so this afternoon, i called it quits on the 2nd grade homework, rounded the kids into the car for fast-food burritos (her choice, not mine) and a trip to the grocery store (and gas station).  lucy was so overtired in the market you'd have thought she was insane.  i banged my right shin on a flat-with-wheels, the kind they use to roll the milk crates out into the dairy aisle.  there were no grocery bags in my car (unheard of) so i had to take paper.  and one of those bags broke in the parking lot, sending two half-gallon cartons of milk falling to the ground.  they didn't spill.  there is a bright side.

and yet.  maybe you can't tell because the tone gets lost in the typing so often - this isn't a rant.  my blood's not boiling (like i'd imagine it would be after reading all that).  i'm feeling rather calm, actually.  feeling like the things that matter are flowing and the things that don't are in perspective.  i don't care if the 2nd grade homework isn't done - i only care that my 2nd grader isn't miserable, and that i can call off the homework if she is.

we're eating on disposable biodegradable plates on friday night.  tomorrow's dinner (boneless skinless chicken breasts and thighs with sliced mushrooms, olives in their juices, artichoke hearts, onions, garlic, and crushed tomatoes) is in the slow cooker in the fridge waiting for morning.  we're having pearled couscous as a side dish and everybody likes pearled couscous.  the roof on the sukkah will go up tomorrow afternoon, and i'll string the twinkle lights then.  

i'm grateful.  for my life.  for our relative good health.  for our house that is finally beginning to feel cozy.  for the stunning weather this week - cool, crisp mornings and evenings, and just-warm-enough at mid-day.  i am grateful to have choices in my children's education.  to have perspective.  to have a scottish stone mason building a dry stone wall in my community.  i am grateful for my slow cooker.  for good friends.

i have a beautiful life.  home, food, family.  community.  what more does a person need, really?  my daughter is going to learn at her own pace.  she is determined and passionate and she wears knee-socks pulled up past her knees every single day, even in the summertime.  my husband is at home depot tonight picking up last-minute supplies to finish the roof on the sukkah.  my son is turning 11 on friday, and flexible.  over the next three days i will bake two loaves of woven braided challah bread, two batches of brownies, three different kinds of cookies, one pan of cookie bars, and twenty-four cupcakes.  i will make three pans of lasagna and one of baked ziti, chicken in the slow cooker, and pearled couscous.  tomorrow night i will eat outside under the stars in a little hut as my ancestors have done for generations, as we begin to celebrate the next in our succession of fall holidays.  and friday night i will be surrounded by my family and friends as we celebrate life.  

i am overwhelmed by my bounty.