Monday, October 12, 2009

Tea with Mrs. Jones

Frantic in an effort to overtake 10:30 a.m., I wanted to finish my "list" before I finalized my music curriculum and left to teach. I applied make up, wiped my bathroom sinks, then began to put away the weekend's accumulation of grooming aids. Since I have banned television on weekdays, I carry a heavier entertainment role. Sunshine stood watching, then shut herself in my closet and hid among the shoes and formal dresses in the back.

After awhile a small knock sounded on the closet door. "Oh come in! I'm glad you came to visit me, please sit down and take some tea." I sang in a sing song voice as I motioned her to a seat on the rim of the tub. I poured from an electric shaver into a tall container filled with water balloons (that was looking for a home). We shared pleasant chit chat as I continued to wipe and put away.

Sunshine began the chat in a conspiratorial tone. "My biggest pwoblem wight now is shoes. My chiwden take off their shoes evwywheo and make such a mess! They aw aways making me late because they can't find theiw shoes."

Hmmm. I think. This is one of my biggest problems with Sunshine. In fact, her father had a long discussion with her yesterday over her shoes. "Man." I exclaim. "That must be Sooo annoying. What do you do about it?"

"I give them an extwa thing to pick up. They don't want anothoe job so they pick up theo stuff."

"My, Mrs. Jones, what a clever solution that is."

I am now wondering if she thinks all women do is complain about their lot. I am duty bound to add, "You, know, Mrs. Jones, I LOVE to be a mom. It's my favorite thing to do."

"Oh, I know." She replied. "It's like you rule the house. Isn't it."

"Yes. It's kind of like that." I choke out.

"Well," Sunshine continued, putting down her water balloon tea, "This has been weally nice, BUT, when I came ovow today, I thought we'd have some tea that didn't taste like plastic. I thought we could have some special time together. My mom nevow let me have tea pawtys when I was litto, and I so hoped we could do that."

Time is running short . . . I need all the time I have to prepare for music classes . . . AND, I so love to check off those boxes next to my list.

Oh, well. I throw my hands in the air. Sometimes procrastination is a legitimate response to a trivial task. Because love is what matters most, it takes top priority. Why is now the best time to express love? Because now is when it's needed and now is when I have the opportunity. The best use of life is love. The best expression of love is time. The best time is now.

So, ten minutes later, we pull up our chairs to cream cheese and jelly hearts, apples and caramel dip, and hot cocoa for "Mrs. Jones"; rice cakes, fresh almond butter and sliced bananas for the mama with ice water with lemon oil. We daintily bite, stir, and sip.

Mrs. Jones has many questions for me. "Which of your kids is the best wookor? How do you make youw sandwiches? Did yow mothow ever do this with you?" Then finally, "Youw house looks fweaky. My kids awe scawed of it, so I nevew weally bwing my kids."

So. I learn something new.

1. My witches that I thought were so cute, festive and harmless are freaking poor Mrs. Jones kids right out.
2. Sunshine is internalizing her shoe problem.
3. Kids can be sneaky about getting information.

Well tea is over. In fact, music classes are over and as I review my day, I want to remember my tea party. I imagine that will be a bit like how I will feel as I prepare to leave this life. I won't ask Briz to bring me in my diplomas or work history so I can gaze fondly at them one last time. I doubt my checklist will mean so much to me. But I'll probably count and relive moments like these . . . each a pearl on my necklace, each moment of love a treasure.


  1. How cute! I love those moments! A little different in my house since I have boys but still so fun! Thanks for sharing!

  2. I know. I am reading the old stuff, but it truly blessed me today.