I remember back when the phrase long weekend meant good things to me. It meant a couple days of sleeping in, maybe going for a bike ride if the weather was nice, going for walks with Ian, reading books. Thanksgiving weekend meant a nice long day cooking, eating, and playing Rummy Royal or Scrabble. Such a relaxing break from the usual grind!

Now, little strikes fear into my heart like the phrase long weekend. Some people wish for 25 hours in a day, right? Well, I’d be happy to loan them our darling beloved child, because I swear days actually are longer with him. Alas, that comes with the caveat that you’ll get a negative amount done, because not only will no productive work happen, you’ll actually end up with more to do cleaning up at the end than when you started.

The remainder of this is a parental whine, which makes me wonder if whining is contagious. If so, I’m sure to catch it, because I had some serious exposure this weekend.

Our weekend started on Tuesday at 11:00 am, when Benji finished his (very cute) preschool Thanksgiving concert and I took responsibility of him for the Thanksgiving Feast (comprising fruit salad and pumpkin bread, because this isn’t the school’s first rodeo, so they serve foods preschoolers will eat).

Then there was Wednesday, which felt fun, because it was a bonus day with no school! We can do whatever we want! So we did, and it was great!

Then Thursday, Thanksgiving, yay! Well, OK, it started getting a little rockier when Grammy and I spent all morning cooking and then a good amount of the evening cleaning up. That made it harder to play, which of course necessitated whining. But it was split up a bit by the whole meal thing, plus the occasional grandparental distraction.

And, Thanksgiving as a holiday was wonderful! We got to spend a nice time at Ian’s parents’ house and see Ian’s grandparents; share some delicious food; and generally enjoy family time. I don’t get to see my in-laws nearly as much as I’d like, so that was nice. We even got to have a bit of adult conversation, astonishingly.

Then Friday, well, yes, ANOTHER bonus day. Wonderful. What will we do with our bonus day? Oh, I know, we’ll get together with a friend we never get to see because our school schedules are opposite right now. Except Benji doesn’t want to go to the park to play with our friend, even though it’s the only sunny day all week; he wants to stay home and play with DAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAADDYYYYYYYYYYY!! Noooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooo! And then at the park, is it snack time yet? Is it time now? It’s been 30 seconds, is it time YET? Plus the friend is boring, we want to play with MOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOMMYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYY!!!

On the way home we stop at the toy store and play with their train table, and buy a fun Lego set to, I’ll be perfectly honest here, get us through the rest of the weekend. That did improve the rest of the morning, since Legos are so very distracting, but without a nap and all, boy did the afternoon get long.

On Saturday, I would have gone out for a bike ride in any weather short of the 10 Plagues. My four-hour-long, very slow, soaking wet ride did restore me to a modicum of sanity. However, poor Ian was sucked dry in that time. I came home and he looked like a juiced orange. The rest of the day just went longer, and longer, and longer. The whining, the continual jumping from thing to thing, the yelling…

And still Sunday. Oh, and to help matters, Benji got up at 6:00 or earlier, but did courteously wait until the time was “in the 6s” before waking us. Hallelujah. Remember how up above I mentioned “sleeping in”? Har, har. I estimate Sunday morning taking between 100 and 200 years, conservatively. On top of that, to some of our delight, I also helped in the kids’ room at church, so it was utterly seamless. At one point, Ian told me, “I really can’t wait to go back to work on Monday.” The afternoon actually improved substantially when our church group came over and distracted Benji a bit, although we did have innumerable incursions into the “adults only” zone.

Needless to say, I am deeply — think Mariana Trench scale — looking forward to this coming week and a return to a modicum of normality. I’m also dreading and anxiously anticipating Monday, to some extent, but from a “potential return to sanity” standpoint, it will be a blessing.

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