I trudged my way through this day. Babygirl wanted to go outside first thing this morning, so I sat in my slippers and bathrobe and fleece jacket with an afghan wrapped around my legs and shivered. When I finally convinced her to come inside, my husband was awake and ready to take her for a ride in the car--this would give me time to shower and get dressed in peace.
He eventually brought home a sleepy looking baby. She'd taken a nap in the car. He then announced that tonight he was taking me to the fancy-schmancy local restaurant that overlooks the Puget Sound to celebrate my birthday. (Which is not until next Wednesday.) He telephoned the babysitter and made reservations. He said that Beth would call back and let us know if she could babysit. Then he left to run some errands.
While he was gone, I went outside with the baby (again). When she consented to coming back inside, I went from task to task--laundry, dishes, sweeping, picking up toys, putting away clothes, washing the bedding--until finally I decided to clean YoungestBoy's room thoroughly. Grace "helped" me.
Two hours after he left, my husband returned and shocked my socks off by telling me he was taking all four kids to the park. Wow! Fifteen minutes after he left, he called to say that it was colder than he thought, probably too cold for Babygirl. He'd have to bring her back. They were gone almost an hour, though, start to finish. In that stretch of time, I'd cleaned up the twins' room.
I feel like a cleaning woman today. A cleaning woman with a birthday.
During the course of the day, the phone rang and it was the babysitter telling me she had to check with her mother, but she was pretty sure she could babysit. I said, fine, let me know when you are one hundred percent. A while later, Beth's mother called to confirm and offered to drive her over. Not long after that, the babysitter called again and said she definitely could babysit. "Great," I said. "Ten minutes to eight?" she said. "Yes!" Then later on, another call from the babysitter asking if her 7th grade niece could come, too. "Sure," I said.
At 7:00 p.m., Babygirl went to sleep for the night.
At 7:50, the doorbell rings. Standing at the door is Stephanie. But we had called Beth. I said, "Hello!" and she came inside and took off her shoes. I went directly into the kitchen and whispered to my husband, "Um, I think you hired two babysitters! Stephanie is here!"
He looked stunned. He said to Stephanie, "Did I call you?"
With a puzzled look, she said, "Well, your number was on my caller I.D., so I called Mel and she said you needed me tonight."
They both turned to look at me. I said, "Oh! When you called, I thought you said--Hi, this is Bethany--not Stephanie!"
Both Beth and Stephanie were at the school science fair. Stephanie mentioned being at the Science Fair, which is where my husband told me Beth was . . . well, it all just led to a big comedy of errors. Okay, well, in other words, I screwed up. My husband took Stephanie home--I tried to pay her $5 for her trouble, but she refused--and Beth arrived. I told her what happened and she laughed and I said, "Is your name actually Bethany, by the way?" She said, "No, it's Elizabeth."
We drove to the little restaurant. We eat there infrequently because, although the food is good, it's scarily expensive. We ordered and then chatted and watched the ferry boat approach the landing. We ate our salad (me) and chowder (him) and ate all the bread and chatted some more. And then more. I yawned and said how hungry I was. I said, "Hey, what time is it?" And he pulled out his cell phone and said it was 8:55 p.m. I watched a middle-aged couple across the room literally staring into each other's eyes until drawn together by magnetic force into a kiss. I said, "That couple is definitely not married."
Then we waited longer. Finally, the waitress approached with a big friendly smile and said, "So, are you ready for dessert?"
I said, "We haven't had dinner yet. So, no. But we are ready for some dinner!" All with a smile and a laugh.
She was mortified but we thought it was hilarious. At long last, dinner arrived. Halibut with crab and hollandaise sauce for me, prime rib for him. The food was good, but not as good as I remembered.
Then the bill came: $82.02 with tip and tax! ACK! I just had no idea it would be quite that expensive. I examined the receipt to see what each item had cost until my husband said, "You are embarrassing me." He said, "You only turn 39 once," and I think that's probably because it's too expensive to turn 39 twice!
At any rate, now I'll have to sell my kidney for grocery money. Happy Birthday to Me!