Wednesday, October 01, 2008

Taxi Dad

I know, I know... it really ought to say "Taxi Mom", but if it did, it just wouldn't be true!

We are SO blessed in our home to have a Daddy that puts his love for his family right out there where everyone can see it! One of the blessings that makes that possible for more hours of the day is a job that allows the man of our house to work from home most days. No, he doesn't have a wonderful home office where he can close the door and seclude himself from the world to focus on his assignments/teleconferences/etc. He usually works, as of late, in the dining room, sitting in a definitely-not-ergonomic-very-ancient-swivel chair that has a part in his personal history and that squeaks whenever he moves, allowing the girls and I to take over the much more comfortable living room for school. (The girls either sit curled up on the big, comfy couch, with a clipboard when needed, or use some beautiful tray tables as their desks.) If Daddy Woody needs focus, he puts on his headphones. More often, though, he listens with one ear to what is going on at Wonderwood Academy. Many times he contributes to the discussion for a while, and then goes right back to "work."

Jelly, Doodle, and I left him there, trying to make his point in a virtual WebEx meeting, and went to a Relief Society cooking class. We spent the morning having a totally fun time learning how to decorate cupcakes from a real pro. Stacy De La Vega just started a new home-based business called Sugar Rush Sweets & Bakery. She gave us all kinds of great tips for decorating cupcakes that look like you bought them. Between her helpful demonstrations and the fellowship with the other ladies in the class, the girls and I had a fantastic time as we decorated our 18 cupcakes. We did some fancy swirly ones with sprinkles, some with hearts and flowers, some that looked like a day at the beach, a special holiday ornament, and one (limited frosting of the right color) that looked like a jack-o-lantern. So we left for home equipped with dessert for the next few days and an icing bag with two tips so that we can make more artistic cupcakes.

When we arrived at home, Wonder Daddy was ready and waiting to rescue me from my taxi duties. I knew without a doubt that my arthritis was NOT going to allow me to be the chauffeur for other adventure we had planned. Donning his chauffer's cap, (uh, his tan canvas not-just-for-fishing hat) he whisked the cupcakes to the safety of the air-conditioned kitchen while I willingly transferred to the passenger-side seat of the Wonderwood School Bus.

A brief stop to pick up a car-picnic-lunch and with Daddy at the wheel, 45 minutes later we had arrived at El Dorado Nature Center to meet our homeschool support group, our Liahona friends.

Equipped with a grid-map of the trail and a nature-based scavenger hunt list of items, Doodle, Jelly, their friends, moms, and our Wonder Daddy headed out for an afternoon of science combined in the best way with P.E. My sweetheart was willing to push my chair, but I didn't want the noise to get in the way of spotting timid wild creatures. While the group explored, I spent time in the little museum at the center attempting to read (in preparation for a discussion with the girls) but truly being hopelessly distracted by the gorgeous view of the small lake and meadow just outside.

When the nature walk had ended, I was greeted by an excited group. In spite of the unseasonalby warm weather, a great time was had by all. While the kids discovered the delights of the little museum, including hanging out in the kid-friendly reading corner, I chatted with the other moms.

Woody did some adventuring of his own, never once complaining, and discovered and purchased a few small surprises for the Woodyettes. He found a patch representing the center to add to Jelly's collection, and for the Doodle a rainbow-colored butterfly eraser for her pencil and a cute turtle pencil sharpener. (Watching the turtles lounge in the sunshine on the rocks as we cross the bridge to the museum here is a favorite tradition when we visit.)

But that isn't all he found. The girls have been fascinated by owls ever since Harry Potter got Hedwig from Hagrid. Wonder Daddy is planning an extension of today's science experience - he will be supervising the girls as they do owl pellet dissections. I promise to take pictures!

So, no taxi mom here. That title belongs to Daddy, and we are SO grateful that he enjoys the work so much.

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