Forbidden Fruit Looks Tasty

There’s nothing like prohibition to fuel action. I’m not talking about alcohol legalities and distilling moonshine in my crawlspace under the house. I’m talking about the last remaining weeks of the school year before my space, cleanliness, peace and quiet become overrun by pre-teen boys for the next two and a half months.

In just a couple weeks, the serenity that exists from 8:30am-2:30pm will be drowned out by a barrage of Halo, Minecraft, Hunger Games bow and arrow practice, Merlin episodes, Razor scooters, and intermittent pleas for more food. School is going to be out for the summer which means I need to make hay while my domestic-goddess sun shines. I’m hearing an urgent call to action.

How am I going to occupy my time these final, remaining days before my state-sponsored-babysitting runs out? (Kidding – I am in awe of the education provided by the Issaquah School District.)

I could dutifully arrange to have the gutters cleaned, landscaping bark delivered, reupholster the gravy-encrusted kitchen chairs, and finish sewing those bathroom curtains. Or I should do something really pragmatic…like schedule a mani-pedi, catch a chick flick matinee, indulge in a massage, or venture over to Bellevue Square in pursuit of some new kitchen towels. Don’t start wagging your finger and accusing me of frivolous and misdirected enterprises. Hear me out.

While the latter activities sound downright hedonistic when strung together in one sentence, the possibility of a three-month embargo from participating in any of those delights spurs me into action. Why can’t I get my nails done at a salon over summer? What’s to stop me from going to see “What to Expect When You’re Expecting” at noon on a July Tuesday?

Practicality, for one. In order to catch a flick with some girlfriends we’d have to get a babysitter for three hours, or throw caution to the wind and trust that our 12-year-olds can hold down the fort, (or the Minecraft fortress). And then we’d have to shield ourselves against being riddled with guilt like Master Chief’s bullets launched at the Covenant. Drag my two digital-game warriors along with me while “Facets of Fuchsia” is being delicately applied to my nails? Something about a bull in a china shop comes to mind.

What’s even more absurd about this scenario is that I don’t even get a massage but maybe once a year, and I usually slap on my own coat of kaleidoscopic Revlon enamel just before a beach vacation. Plus, I can always arrange to see that latest Twilight movie as they are intended to be seen: at twilight, when reinforcements arrive home to watch the kids.

Simply put, the two weeks before school gets out instills a jarring panic in me to stockpile participation in superficial quests. The knowledge that my daytime hours for the next ten weeks will NOT be spent luxuriating in quiet tranquility causes a temporary inner uprising. I don’t normally cruise the mall all day, nor do I linger over Thai food lunch with my friends. But knowing that trying to indulge in any of those pastimes during the summer is like corralling cats, makes them all the more appealing. I suddenly, vehemently want what I won’t be able to have.

So instead of preparing to be supermom this summer and planning thoughtful activities that meaningfully engage young bodies and minds, I am going to hoard my time at Chipotle, order “for here”, then wander over to Bed, Bath and Beyond to check out their vivid towel selection. I don’t need new towels. I’m just going because I can.


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