It's official. RaggedyDad is a wuss-Papa. I know this because of the box of cereal sitting on top of our refrigerator right now.
A week before yesterday, my husband traveled to visit his family in Belgium. Originally, we were all going to go together, as we often do in the summer, but that trip will have to be saved for another lifetime. I mean, year. Have I mentioned what a pleasure it is to travel with small children and babies?
When it became clear that we weren't all going to Belgium, the question remained whether any of us would go. As in, just RaggedyDad. We'd briefly contemplated sending Ann along with him, but ultimately, the timing was wrong for me to have her go, and we felt that she's a little bit young (very almost 4) for that sort of thing.
After exhaustive deliberations, we came to the conclusion that since there were extenuating family circumstances in Belgium, and this was an important trip for RaggedyDad, he would go alone for a week. Sunday to Sunday. He even managed to work remotely from his mother's apartment in Belgium on Monday, thereby saving a vacation day.
As for me, let's just say that I hope not to be in my situation without him again for a long time. Or ever. I hope I was enough of a good sport about it, but I am just . . me. Most of the time, between school, work, and saving the world, RaggedyDad is not home at all during the kids' waking hours, except for about 20-30 minutes in the morning. And I do have parents, friends, and neighbors closeby. But let me reiterate that this was not a picnic. Unless you like picnics that are scary and lonely.
In any case, RaggedyDad gallantly did a major supermarket/fruitstore shop shortly after landing and arriving at home. Andy was sleeping, and Ann, ever the 'Papa's girl' went along with him on the outing. I usually bank on a few exchanges, ommisions, and extra items coming home when RaggedyDad does the shopping. I'd be a fool to complain about these, and he knows which things on the shopping list are really urgent and non-negotiable.
But one item that came home made me smile and took me back to my own days of tagging along on grocery trips, and the ensuing begging and bargaining that little kids are so good at. A box of cereal called Disney Princess Fairytale Flakes. Seriously. They're actually like Frosted Flakes, but dusted with . . pink. Also, less tasty than Tony the Tiger. "She said that she's my princess, and I'm her prince," he explained sheepishly. Did she now? Sigh.
Welcome home, RaggedyDad the Valiant.