Friday, July 25, 2014
Sweat drips down my forehead as I mix the dough. Shortening cut into flour drizzled with water. A crust for the pie filling that bubbles over on the stove. A lava of sticky blues and purples from the blueberries picked earlier in the day. The sweat drips and the dough comes together, all the while children dance in and out of the kitchen.
“Is he upstairs?”
“Is he ready to play football?”
“Where did he go?”
Brushing wisps of hair away from my face with the back of my dough covered hand I don’t look up as I calmly inform them that their father will be right with them. The screen door off the kitchen to the porch slams as my seven and nearly six year old stomp through any and all hard surfaces to find their father. He is upstairs finishing a few peaceful stolen moments on his work computer. I am elbow deep in my life work… flour and shortening and children and staying present.
Moments later my husband appears and he gathers the children for games of catch in the sticky weather. Summer heat and sweat and grime is carried on the breeze that wafts through my kitchen window.
Heat from the warming oven starts to kiss my skin from across the kitchen. Rolling pin in hand I laugh at what I must look like. Braless, breasts sagging and swinging in a tank top, hair in messy pigtails, flour up to my elbows and smeared across my forehead. The oven buzzes to tell me it has preheated.
I can hear their laughter outside and all too soon the pie is prepared and is tossed in the oven. Sweaty heads come in for glasses of icy water, footballs thrown to the corner of the kitchen, bouncing lightly on the wide wooden floor boards.
He comes in last, tired eyes dancing. He comments on the heat, how it’s nicer outside. I tell him I know. But the pie…. and dinner… and…
With his large, gentle hand he reaches up and brushes away flour from my forehead.
“Thank you.” He says.
And in this moment it is enough. In this moment the simple words and the gentle touch will suffice.