Day 7

Instructions to stay at home are firmly in place and time here has slowed down. With nowhere to be and a lack of anticipation about where we might go this weekend or even next month, the pressure is off.

Our rule about mornings during the quarantine is this: Try to stay in your own bed until 6am. After that either come snuggle with mommy and preferably fall back asleep or stay in your own room and play quietly til 7.

Isn’t it “fun” to have these ideas about how things are going to go when you have kids? It’s funny actually to think that the kids are going to understand the rule and simply do what you say. It’s funny because it’s not very realistic. Well, you live and learn.

We are rolling with it. Kind of. They play together instead of staying in their own rooms and they don’t play as quietly as they could but today they snuggled and slept til 7 so in some form this morning routing is evolving into something that works.

Before lunch Big Sister decided that she wanted to do ballet class. She started pre-ballet this year. She loves it but at this age not much of what they do is actual ballet. We turned on Tamara Rojo’s class at the English National Ballet. I gave each of the girls a chair to hold on to as a barre. Disgruntled because she couldn’t get the positioning of her chair just right, Big sister was suspicious from the start. Little Bean preferred sitting on her chair to actually doing the barre exercises (fair.) The gorgeous Tamara began and Big Sis immediately said, “That’s not ballet.” Shaking her head very seriously she demonstrated, “You don’t do that with your feet.” “Uh huh” I thought and nodded. Then she explained that the problem with the whole set-up was that we needed a real ballet barre and more kids. Luckily ballet class ended when everyone got distracted by Thorsten’s return with chocolate candy from Oma.

Going outside at least once a day is one of the other quarantine rules we made up. Playgrounds are closed but we still need some fresh air.

Getting ready to go outside almost always starts with an argument about appropriate clothing for outdoor activities. The debate varies from a disagreement in philosophies about whether undershirts are needed when it’s 0 degrees to whether one needs a coat or a jacket, boots or shoes, scarf and hat…Turns out a person can cry a lot of tears about this.

She wears her bike helmet whether she’s riding or not.

Once we get outside it becomes clear that when Little Bean said she wanted to ride bikes, she meant she wanted to ride her sister’s bike even though she can’t reach the pedals. Now she has rejected her own bike and wants to walk. She wears her bike helmet though just in case.

Today we went to the backyard to play after our biking expedition and the girls immediately settled into working on their sidewalk chalk installation. For some reason the cold doesn’t seem to bother them once they get started. They stand around talking to each other, coloring, looking at their work and conspiring. This lasts a surprisingly long time and they seem to be at peace. How to manufacture this kind of peace when we need it at other times during the day is a mystery for the ages.

They remind me of graffiti artists

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