the mouse does play

There's nothing like a bit of absence to make the heart grow fonder. G's been away on a holiday since Tuesday. And I'm missing him terribly. Last night after dinner at Mum's, Grace ran up the path to the font door of our house saying hello, hello, hello as is our habit. The house sat cold and damp, unoccupied all day. No friendly light or face in the study window. Still, even over a few days we've built some little routines. Like running in and turning the lights and heater on. Feeding Tony. Grace does the shake, shake, shake of the dry food and I dole out the raw meat and try and stop her from eating cat crunchy bits (yucky) or pestering him as he eats. Then we cook dinner together(except for last night).

I'm taking the opportunity to cook food that I like and G doesn't. Lots of meat. Regressing to childhood comfort food. Lamb chops, sausages, potatoes; plain cooking served with steamed vegetables. The sort of food that goes well with tomato sauce. I think there's a roast chicken in the offing. And golden syrup dumplings, cheesecake maybe (if someone will come and help me eat it, because I looove cheesecake and I shouldn't have a whole one sitting in the fridge). And if I don't get sick of meat, some form of casserole, or bolognese. Or pea and ham soup. By Wednesday, I think I'll be hankering for bean pasta again.

Grace has been quite delightful overall. She loved staying at Nana's the days I worked. Yesterday I was really anxious about whether I'd be able to get us up, breakfasted, showered, dressed, lunch made and in the car by 5 to 8. Not saying it was easy but, it happened and I was even early for work. Which made me feel like I totally rocked. A feeling which carried through the whole day. Indeed I had a great day, with one particular interaction where I felt I did really good work. Even the customer thought so.

Today was harder. I swapped days so I had my one in four thursdays off, sort of like a built in flex. We caught up on some cleaning; putting away, dusting, vacuuming, grocery shopping et cetera. It's not that G doesn't do it*, but it hasn't been done all at once for quite a while. Grace arked up at one point, wanting to go for a walk down the lane. I said I'd take her to the park on the way to shopping but when we got there she wouldn't get out of the car and went all stiff and cried daddy, daddy, daddy park, daddy walk, daddy home. She's not articulate enough yet to say mummy sucks and I want daddy instead but her meaning was pretty clear.

She perked up once we got to the supermarket but was somewhat difficult in the vegetable section. There are several zuccini with teeth marks in the fridge now as a consequence. Grocery shopping with a toddler has the potential to descend into a particular kind of hell. Unfortunately I'd chosen a trolley without a restraint in the seat. We have a firm rule. Grace is allowed to walk, or stand on the back of the trolley until she starts being a clown. Two strikes and she's strapped in. Otherwise it would take me all bloody day and I'd be (more of a) screaming harridan by the end of it. Luckily a lovely safeway lady on her break helped me procure another trolley and change everything over. I nearly cried with gratitude. It got better after that and I ended by going and buying a $20 red. For the lonely nights. 

Over dinner she had a big long phone call with daddy and it was lovely to see her eyes sparkle when she realised it was him. She's been talking to him twice a day but it's really hard to explain to her that he'll be back in next Teusday. I think she's OK. Most of the time she seems pretty happy, she's eating, sleeping, playing all as normal. And we've got a few good things lined up over the next three days. Including going to an open for inspection with mum. The house is a bit derelict and will probably be more than we can afford but it's a house I've fantasised about numerous times. And it's about time I started having a proper look and getting a feel.

No doubt there will also be cooking and sewing, maybe some gardening and a bit of faffing with the blogs. Perhaps some picture hanging too. These are my garage sale scores from last week on the way back from our walk by the river. I have quite a collection of Australian gum tree scenes. They make me feel peaceful. Hopefully I'll be able to find the hammer and four inch nails, oops, I mean picture hooks.

*Added later; he actually does heaps which I'm going a new appreciation of. It's just that he cares more about the bathroom and the dishes and I care more about clean sheets and a tidyup. Dishes neatly stacked, of course. To be done in one big go instead of through the day.


Miss Eagle said...

What a lovely piece and won't it be beautiful to show Grace when she is older. Love the garage sale scores.

Kris said...

Lucy would love the baby in a tree picture. She's deeply into rock-a-bye baby at the moment, in part because it is sung in this animation we watch on youtube:
It's about two sisters and Lucy adores it, seeing herself in the Georgie role. Grace might like it too.

VictoriaE said...

I love the old pictures like that that I find in opshops - autralian landscapes are very calming. There's always a bit of heartache for toddlers when their dad's away, hey? But it is nice to do all the things you wouldn't always do, and eat all the food only you like, etc. And absence is great for making the heart grow fonder, I reckon it is good for a relationship. Enjoy your week!

suse said...

Enjoy your meat week!

Stomper Girl said...

Mmmm, comfort food! Roast chicken, pea&ham soup, cheeeeeeeesecake. Sounds delish.
Hang in there doing the sole parent thing! sounds like you and Grace are coping really well.

HeyMcJude said...

Muppinstuff...muppinstuff...I stumbled across you today and I was thinking - where do i know that name from? Then it hit me - you are mrs Washalots alter ego! Well hello - alter ego!

Janet (aka Mrs Washalot) said...

yep indeed, this is my "real" blog or at least the one I post to most. Welcome.

kim at allconsuming said...

Eugh, the single parent thing is hideous. From the military precision required in organisation to well, the singleness of it all. But getting to cook and eat what you like/want is a silver lining of sorts.

h&b said...

I like the $20 bottle of red. There's comfort, right there ;)
G. is a vego then ?
Also, this house. Is it the one you posted about that you have been walking past for years ? I have a feeling it is.
Is it on R/ ? I'd love to see it - email me if you want to share ( no probs if you'd rather not ;)