August 01, 2005

Lost Weekend Recap

Well, the weekend of single parenthood came to an end yesterday afternoon with no loss of life, as the Missus returned from her jaunt with Mrs. LMC.

Fortunately, I'm beyond the inside-out sundress issue raised by the LMC below. The older Llama-ettes can simply be told to "go put on a nice dress." The three year old is not to be trusted to dress herself under any circumstances, but I handle her simply by noting what her sisters come up with and imitating their fashion sense to the greatest extent possible.

I am still nonetheless continually presented with new challenges. For instance, never having been a hippy myself, I know next to nothing about ponytails. Ditto the subjects of barettes, ribbons, French-braiding and other hardware and techniques associated with long hair. Indeed, I have a hard enough time just getting them to stand still long enough to have all the tangles brushed out.

However, somehow or other I managed to get all three looking reasonably presentable Sunday morning and took them off to church. I would have unhesitatingly ducked it altogether except for the fact that I had pulled usher duty this week so felt that I had no choice.

I had been planning all along to unload the two younger girls in the downstairs playroom and just have the seven year old tag along with me as I ushed. We'd done this before without too much trouble. But when I got upstairs, I discovered that only two out of the four ushers scheduled for the service had shown up. Therefore, the eldest Llama-ette, along with the other usher's college-age daughter, were hastily promoted to active duty status.

I must say that the gel did just fine. She handed out the children's bulletins at the beginning of the service, she solemnly marched up to the alter carrying the Communion waifers and she took the collection plate up to the balcony all by herself during the offeratory. During Communion, she lobbied hard to be allowed to control the flow of participants coming forward from one side of the church. I wouldn't let her do this, but I did unleash her on the balcony again, allowing her to go on up and bring them down. She did that well enough too, although she was indignant that one person stayed seated and, for whatever reason, did not take Communion. It is not at all beyond the realm of possibility that she might have started shouting at him for his nonconformity. Fortunately, she restrained herself, merely relating the incident to me in a clenched-jaw whisper.

After church, I dished up our standard brunch of scrambled eggs and muffins, largely thrown away on the gels because of the number of cookies and doughnuts they'd managed to snag in the fellowship hall while I was chatting with other parishioners. I suppose I could have just skipped cooking, but had I done so, I'd have been bombarded with tragic testimonies of near starvation.

The last hour or two of waiting for Mom to reappear is always the hardest. I could have taken the easy way out and simply put on a movie or something - indeed, there were many, many such requests - but I refrained. Instead, the gels spent the early afternoon venting their mounting impatience on each other and me.

When's Mom coming home?

I don't know - soon.

Can we watch a show?


When's she going to BE here?

I said soon.

Can we watch a show?

Didn't I just say no?

Daaaaaaad! She hit me!

No I didn't!

Yes you did!

You made me!


You girls! Stop that bickering!

Can we watch a show?

And so on. So when the Missus appeared (in a very good mood, fortunately), I pretty much said, "Hello, Dear, nice to see you! Well, gotta go mow the lawn - shoink!" To her great credit, she said, "I kind of figured that's what you were going to say. Go right ahead."

Posted by Robert at August 1, 2005 08:22 AM | TrackBack

I loved the part about your stern daughter wanting to upbraid those not wanting to receive communion. Great stuff.

Posted by: The Colossus at August 1, 2005 10:13 AM

Out of curiosity, how did you handle that one?

Posted by: Brian B at August 1, 2005 11:30 AM

As the song says, "It's five o'clock somewhere."

Posted by: Robert the LB at August 1, 2005 12:17 PM
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