Thursday, July 12, 2012

Guest Post: Angela

Thankfully, our sick baby is back to her regular opinionated self and the car seat has never had this much attention to cleanliness. Today's guest post is from my very talented friend Angela. She is the designer of my amazing header and is raising her two boys out on the east coast while her genius husband attends MIT. They were another "teacher married to an engineer" couple from our college days. She blogs at Meet the Thomsons. Leave her some comment love!  

You know you really adore someone when you are willing to come out of a blogging hiatus to guest post for them… that, or you want a souvenir from Seattle.

It had been a good day at Swimming.

I only had to remind my son Caleb umpteen times to participate in class.

[This had been better than the previous thirty-something prompts from the day before and having to perch myself on the opposite side of the pool to discourage the kid from roaming away from the group. (Seriously, this is my life?!)]

Parenting really is about the small victories, isn’t it?

So after a courteous thank you to Mary, the lifeguard/swim instructor/candidate for sainthood, I decided to treat Caleb and myself to some Dairy Queen, the poor man’s Coldstone.

As we drove towards our reward I asked Caleb what type of ice cream he wanted. Understand, my kid isn’t a bad kid. He is four... going on eighty-three most days. He doesn’t like it when his food is too cold or too hot or well, it is easier to say he just doesn’t like too much of anything, ever. Especially spontaneity. Hence my inquiry.

He replied, “I think green, since gReEen is my favorite color, Mommy.”

How many green-hued ice cream flavors can you think of?! Off the top of my head I got two: mint and pistachio. I was doubtful DQ would have pistachio (that’s more of a Friendly’s fare), and I had a feeling mint was not going to tickle my preschooler’s palate, but we forged ahead anyways.

Caleb insisted I order a small mint M&M blizzard for him; I complied, and also ordered a small vanilla cherry-dipped cone for myself. I would scarf anything dipped in that red concoction, wouldn’t you?

Caleb pecked the end of the spoon of ice cream and screwed up his face in disgust. I offered my cone to him and he, of course, took it. We swapped. I am not fan of shrapcandy in ice cream, but hey, it had been a good day, why rock the dinghy?

This scenario plays out a lot more than I would like to admit. Same roles. Different players.

You see, my husband and I have recently been very tempted by a mint-M&M-blizzard of sorts. With the completion of his Masters degree next May, our family finds it very appetizing to put academia behind us and be a pseudo-normal family of four (pseudo is the best we can hope for, honestly). Keeping our little house, attending our small branch, chugging along in our church callings, staying close to friends in Massachusetts and having more time to spend together as a family. You know, all our favorite things. Things that rival Caleb’s devotion to the color green.

But no. No. No. No.

Along with swimming lessons, T-ball practice, and home projects, perusing PhD programs has become a pastime this summer.

What entering a PhD program means for our family: living off of a scanty stipend, selling our house, possibly relocating, and, just, brain freeze-like headaches.

That mint-M&M-blizzard option is looking pretty amazing right about now, huh?
Psst! (We think so too.)

But we know something, my husband and I, and Caleb just learned it from an end of a long red spoon. Sometimes our favorite choice isn’t the best choice.

In the words of a four-year-old as they poured from a sticky vanilla-ringed mouth, “Mommy, I think red is my new favorite.”

Sometimes the unknown leads to a discovery of unimagined bliss. There’s a hope for something better, like, cherry-coated kind of better.


Alicia W said...

I always love when Dairy Queen treats become extended metaphors. It always come back to ice cream. Or it should.

(From Geneva's sister)

jeanene c said...

The mint at DQ is not my fav either.
However I love the ice cream. The future is so hard to see. That red coating just isn't very transparent. Good Luck.

Kim said...

Oh I know how you feel! That's what we went through when we moved away. I still feel like we're constantly switching ice cream flavors though! Guess we still haven't found a favorite!

Diana said...

I've had similar experiences lately, with the extended metaphors and the unsuspecting/unrelated daily activity that teaches me some big life lesson it never intended. Maybe it's what I'm getting this season instead of pregnant... :P

Rachel said...

lol. Well played. I think you intended it all along.


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