For more than an hour I am left in relative peace except for when I am called to see the most recent development my son has done with a stick, or a new hole dug, or be witness to one of my daughter's unending number trips down the slide.
I settle back in my chair and close my eyes. It is a beautiful day. The wind is wonderfully cool on this fairly hot afternoon. Ohio humidity hasn't kicked in yet... it's not like Texas will offer any relief. The grass here is lush and green and getting quite long. The birds can now always be heard chitter-chatting above us.
Oh I'm so tired I would love to nap here, outside...
Then one child starts yelling at the other for walking through their sand pile and I sigh. I open my eyes and observe to see if the conflict can resolve itself or if I have to intervene. Thankfully I offer a suggestion and crisis averted.
Faintly I hear retreat begin to play and I remind my kids to stop what they're doing. They attempt to stand still... at least they have a hand over their chests as they dare to slowly wander over to a different shovel. Life on base. They're learning.
The music ends and the collecting of toys begins. Final slides. Farewell to the park. It is time to make dinner. Baths are in store tonight.
What a lovely way to spend an afternoon.