Questions of the day:
Will the no-knead dough from Artisan Bread in Five Minutes a Day rise in two hours, as promised, and allow us to bake a crusty loaf any time just by tearing off a hunk from the giant lump in the fridge? To say that Grandma (visiting from Florida for the week) is skeptical, is to downplay matters considerably.
We put on music to accompany our project, but it took only a few minutes to mix the four ingredients (water, salt, yeast, dough) and put it in the container you see below. So now it sits, and we wait to be converted into believers, our kneading and double-rising days behind us forever.
Meanwhile, after various search parties went off into the woods to collect this bounty of raw materials, the menfolk (and, for a moment, one of the wee womenfolk) got busy with their wits and a glue gun, at a dollhouse raising, right here on our deck, while M. splashed about in her little pool and E. took a bath in some blue paint.
Will I survive my life to live until tomorrow.
I'm kind of fried. Exhausted, baby waking multiple times at night to nurse though she doesn't need it but just somehow recently got used to it, plus other random wakings by other children, and then the day starting again at 6am and going at a breakneck pace of just about nothing but tending, feeding, cleaning, caring, nursing, answering, dressing, undressing, holding, cleaning, cooking, feeding, cleaning, cooking, feeding, nursing, putting down for nap, holding, and so on until I feel flayed and cooked and served up.
Of course I know vacations now that we have three children are a whole different species than the strange breed of work-in-a-different-setting they had become with two children, but the utter impossibility of ever doing ANYTHING for myself EVER really leaves me feeling a little unmoored at times. Who am I again? Where did I go? Am I disappearing? I see my interesting books and notebooks and my knitting and sewing and cooking over there and there and there and I think I'll get a moment some time, but then five days go by without being able to do more than a minute or two of anything of my own, honestly, really, no joke, before someone needs me and I have to stop. And this is with a great husband and my amazing mother-in-law around, fully pulling their weight. It just doesn't let up.
And I think that I've become even more invested than ever in preserving and enjoying having my own separate self now that I have three children. I write more, I think more, I make more. And I love that. It's when all the parts of me--mother, writer, therapist, maker, whatever--are sort of integrated (since sort of is about as good as it gets) that I feel best and, I like to think, I'm the best I can be at all the parts. In the normal work-week, I get to work about half the time (a little less) and be home half the time, and some days I'm in and out, so it's neither there all day nor away all day. It's a little frenetic, of course, but kind of richly full in a way that makes me feel tired, but lucky. I just need to be able to get some of that on vacation, too, as does T.. But right now, with these three these ages and no babysitter on the horizon (and 3 too much for Grandma to handle alone) it's just brutal.
Luckily, they're cute. I also threw a fit and that felt better. Sometimes you've just got to let it out. And today I got to work on this for a few minutes and that felt good, too. And we've resolved to help Mairead get back to sleeping all night and begging (I got down on my knees) E. not to wake us unless something is terribly wrong. "Or, if we have a bad dream," she said. "Right, if it's a really bad one," I said. "Yeah, and if not we can just roll over and go back to sleep," she said. Yes, yes, yes.
My crazy ambitious who-do-you-think-you're-kidding fantasy for the last three days of this weekend, and summer, is that I'll get over to FABRICations, a great you-know-what store in Hudson, NY, for an hour to get some help learning how to quilt and bind this quilt top I made a few months back. I've been trying for the whole summer, but with one car, three kids, and being in the boondocks it's been impossible. It's my first quilt ever, a doll quilt.