Today we had a long, slow, lazy morning. This is something that is rare in our current lives for obvious reasons. Ted took the twins downstairs at 8 am and played with them. I woke up and came downstairs at 9:30, incredibly late for these days, and Hazel didn’t come down until 10 am! When she did she got in my lap and we snuggled for another hour until we decided we all had to eat breakfast. Having the expanse of a day in front of you with nothing at all on the schedule, nothing required, is an incredible luxury. We were all more relaxed. There was a lot of joking and giggling around the table.
When we were done eating we took everybody down to our developing family room in the basement. Hazel brought down a bucket of Lego’s for the twins, and then I set her up to paint at the desk that’s been awaiting its role as the kids’ desk for many years since we first bought it during my pregnancy with Hazel. Meantime, Ted and I did various tasks in the room. That chunk of time plus the others we spent down there today marked a new stage in our family interaction. The twins are starting to be able to self (and other) entertain more now, and so they were pretty content to play with Lego’s while periodically coming over to check on what either Ted or I was doing. Hazel happily mixed paints and covered several pages of her drawing book. Ted and I did projects either separately or together, and made some really good headway while also being able to stop and tend to the kids when we needed to. It was enjoyable, satisfying, and productive.
One of the reasons we wanted to set up our family room downstairs is that there is no room on the main floor that’s big enough to easily accommodate the activities that babies/young toddlers, preschoolers, and adults want to do. We wind up having to stop Hazel from doing a lot of what she’s interested in, because there’s no way to make it safe for the babies. Downstairs that won’t be an issue. Being in the same room and doing the things we each wanted to do gave us the flexibility to work and play together or separately as we wanted. I am very pleased that it’s turning out so well.
We took breaks for other things. At one point Ted took the twins for a walk while Hazel and I went to the park together and had a bit of Hazel-Mommy time. During the kids’ nap, and tonight after they were in bed, we did the things we didn’t want to attempt with them present like moving bookshelves and the like.
So now there are areas of the house that are utter disaster, but it’s totally temporary, and will be fixed tomorrow. And there are other areas that are coming together so nicely, better than we even imagined.
One’s physical space really does impact the ease of play, of work, of having places for privacy and togetherness within something that is shared like a house. We love where we live, don’t feel the need to “upgrade” to a big house with a very expansive, modern open floor plan, but I know we are really going to enjoy being able to expand our living area down into the ground floor.
And now there’s a pleasant warm spot with a desk in which Ted can work when he needs to work from home. He used to huddle on a couch in the cold awful basement, surrounded by all our crap. This will be an improvement of many-fold.