7:15am: We're all up and doing our normal summer morning routine: cereal (TJ's Honey-Os), TV (SpongeBob), couch, checking email and FB. Zoboomafoo comes on on PBS.
7:45am: Open the catch-all drawer and it's like a bomb went off in the rubber band container. I guess Maya was looking for a blue rubber band and dumped everything out. Ask her to put everything back but there are so many rubber bands that I ask her to sort out the dirtier ones and put them in a ziploc so I can, hopefully, give them back to the postal delivery person.
8:00am: Mama Mirabelle comes on but Maya decides playing on the iPad is a better way to spend her time. She uses apps for coloring, tracing numbers, "playing" music, and playing games. Ian reads Pendragon #9, Raven Rise in his room; he's really loving the series. I'm back at my laptop working on this project (uploading photos and typing blog entries).
9:00am: Getting into a routine of having Maya work on a few pages of her packet everyday. At this rate she'll be able to finish by the end of the summer, which is a relief. Really noticed that even a week without schoolwork and her brain gets lazy and forgetful.
10:00am: To take a break Maya watches the Cat in the Hat. I tell Ian to get dressed and pack his lunch to take to his aunt's. When the episode is over the kids play by throwing a ball at each other and squishing each other. Fun!
10:45am: Leave to drop the kids off at my in-laws'. Can't wait to get my hair lopped off! Take a "before" picture first.
11:30am: Haircut time! Julie, who came recommended by my sister, is great with my hair. I rarely get my hair cut so I don't mind shelling out a few extra bucks to get it cut by Julie.
12:30pm: After setting aside the 10 inches of my hair, Julie does a great job giving me a cute bob. My head feels light and summery! Drive to the nearby Japanese market to pick up some books (including a travel guide to Kobe on sale) and food.
1:15pm: Pick up the kids. Maya and my SIL painted their nails. Looks like they had a great time. It's so nice to have family around. Get home, unpack the groceries and head to my room to read my new books and take a power nap. (Notice a pattern in my afternoons?) Let the kids do whatever and watch whatever. I'm happy to report they don't give each other any problems, which means they don't give me any problems. (I bought three bags of Karl; one of them I ate on my way to pick the kids up (what? I was hungry) and the kids got into another bag, so we only have one left!)
3:30pm: Remind Ian to write the birthday card for his friend's party. Drag myself out of my room to wrap the present. Drive him over to his friend's house down the street at 4:00pm.
4:05pm: Take Maya to TJ's with me to pick up some staples: milk, bananas, granola bars, half and half. I spot vinho verde and buy a bottle. In the frozen dessert section I find something that's new to me -- peach pops -- and decide to try them out. I let Maya get coffee ice cream, her current favorite flavor.
4:45pm: Remember that I need to pick up a book at the library. Walk over there, telling Maya we can only stay for a little bit because we need to clean up the living room before our friends come over for dinner. Maya checks out another Pokemon video.
5:15pm: Get home and clear the living room of the laundry, tidy up the dining table, and clear the kitchen counter. Steep some mugicha. Just opening the package and getting a whiff of the barley smell makes me close my eyes for a moment to savor memories of summers in Japan.
6:30pm: Rupert comes home. Maya and I have just been hanging out in the living room, peacefully. It's so nice when we're all pleasant to each other ... and it's quiet.
7:00pm: Our friends R and A arrive. They're visiting from Atlanta. We've missed them since they moved away from Los Angeles several years ago. We order food from a local Mexican place and send Rupert and Maya to pick it up. It takes them awhile to come back with the food because the restaurant's busy.
8:00pm: Go pick Ian up from the birthday party. Seems like they had a great time but I'm just eager to get back to my food and conversation with my friends.
8:30pm: Get R, a computer science professor, to take a look at our wireless set-up. Rupert hadn't been able to set up the the wireless printing and we hope R can help. He patiently works on the problem and manages to figure it out. Hooray!
9:15pm: The kids get ready for bed. But, first, the requisite group photo. After the kids go to bed we hang out and talk. Eat peach pops; they're not bad and actually have real peach chunks in them.
11:15pm: R and A leave. Rupert and I continue to hang out on the couch. I upload photos, surf the web, etc.
12:00am: Head to the bedroom. Make the mistake of browsing through the Kobe guidebook. Can't put it down for half an hour. Turn the light off at 12:30. Good night!