The rainy calm of August in Alaska was the theme of the weather today but the activities of the day were far from calm. I had the Finn, Liam and Nico the majority of the day today as there was a baby shower for Aunt Ashley and the party was at our house in the Cove. We started the day off with a trip to the trampoline to jump barefooted, in rain gear in the drizzly morning. After wandering back home we collected the boys wetsuits and headed for Rusty’s lagoon.
Along the way we stopped at a spot we call glass beach. It’s name comes from a funny local tradition. Years ago glass was recycled in Homer and everyone from the Cove hauled our glass to the other side to get rid of it. Somewhere along the line Alaska in general quit recycling glass. This posed a lame proposition of just chucking it in the garbage. This being said it was also evident that the amount of sea glass we often found was dwindling because most people thought it was better to recycle. Someone had a grand idea. Pick an exposed (to the waves) little rock beach and bust the glass. This has become a pretty exciting little adventure for the boys. There are rules to be followed about picking up broken glass but in general the fun is in the smashing. Early in the summer when not many people have been using the little cubby of rock there is an amazing amount of interesting smooth polished sea glass to be found. This time of year we don’t do much looking just smashing. After the smash fest we were off for a bumpy ride as the tide was shifting against the wind.
Once we got to the opening to the little lagoon the wetsuits were struggled into and the little foam surfboard was argued over. As the tide came in the boys rode around on the board and floated in the wet suits and life jackets as the tide came ripping in. After about 2 hours of splashing and swimming the lack of sun took it’s toll and the cold chattering started. By then the river into Rusty’s was pretty swift and the combination of cold hands and chattering teeth was a good reason to hop back in the skiff for the sprint home.
After some warm showers, late lunch and a wrestle fest in the living room Nico needed to head for home. At the dock Liam and Nico took a tour of Uncle Ian’s fishing boat. We attempted some fishing on the dock and in the skiff as we puttered Nico back to his side of the island. We rowed home with the tide and my boys tried to troll for fish with no apparent understanding of the concept. We did a little more fishing from the dock before heading up to dinner in the growing rain.
Once dinner was finished, Liam and Brooke went for a little walk. Finn wanted to play a game on the deck which he created. Despite numerous open areas to kick a ball he chose the small area on the deck. I love watching him kick the ball and develop some skills he may use for soccer which I love. I recall very fondly all the kicking my brothers and I did as kids and it is great to see Finn enjoy that also. At one point it I noticed him struggling to get his hands in his pockets and I asked him what he was doing as it looked pretty funny. He replied “getting my hands in my pockets so I am like you!”
I hadn’t noticed I was doing it. I suddenly felt the weird surge of joy a proud pappa often feels when his children do some funny action in reflection of our own behavior. A moment which doesn’t really mean much to anyone else. An action which may often be overlooked. Still the obvious understanding that in a child’s eyes a parent can be such an important role model is palpable.
I think I do a decent job as a dad. I may spoil my boys a little too much. I may treat them like they are princes some times. Yet, isn’t that what fathers should do. I know my dad did. He still does. I think that despite this though my kids are learning some good stuff about life from me. The joy in the fact that I have this time with them is made even more grand by the events of the last year. I hope they are learning, because I know they are growing and whatever happens to me I won’t have these chances forever. Soon they will be less impressionable, at least less moldable by my actions. I can’t miss my chance to be revel in the little moments.