Sunday Sundays

huck waking up from a nap at church

Sundays are hard on me. Something about Sundays makes me super slaphappy. You too, huh? Yeah, I thought so.

It is Sunday evening and Blake is sitting on the chair and a half with his arm in a sling, telling us about his Robotics competition. He broke his collar bone last week while playing football and he is waiting patiently for our mom to finish making the traditional batch of Sunday Evening Nachos. Except she is making lasagna this time, because, well, who can know these things? (Lasagna = Italian nachos.)

"So, these kids sang the national anthem at the start of robotics and they couldn't really carry a tune." Blake has the kind of voice where everything he says sounds like the send-up to a punch line.

"Well, why didn't you sing it instead?" my mom asks, placing handfuls of spinach on wide, steamy noodles.

"Uh, I only know the bass line to that song . . ."

I'm holding Huck and he is whipping his head from speaker to speaker -- Grandma Jumie to Uncle Blake to Grandma Jumie to Uncle Blake. This is a new skill he picked up this week, intently following conversations, along with sitting upright, rolling over, and arching his back in frustration to get out of his car seat. I'm sitting on the leopard print barstool and my dad is standing to my right, and Sundays make us all slaphappy, have I mentioned that?

"Blake, you sing the bass, and I'll sing alto with you!" I say. Nothing is better to an old choir geek than singing with a current choir geek who also happens to like robots. It's a really dumb idea only both of us have just survived an entire Sunday, and Sundays make us all slaphappy, but I'm pretty sure I've said that.

"That's not the melody, Blake," my mom says after we finish the first line, and Blake interrupts the song to say back, "Mom, I'm singing bass," with an intonation only a sixteen-year-old can muster.

My mom decides to provide soprano, and my dad joins in and suddenly we've got a right proper quartet. I'm aware of how stupid this would look to an outsider (like, my husband). A former choir geek, a current choir geek, a former head cheerleader, and a former, well, whatever my dad was. Then we all hold the note grandly at the land of the freeeeeeeeee. My mom goes for the high note because that is just the kind of woman she is, and I place Huck's hand over his heart somberly for the home of the brave.

It's over and I'm wondering what all got into us to do that, when suddenly my dad is playing a raucous percussion on the kitchen island and Huck is looking terribly alarmed. I do my best to comfort him and hear Blake's sixteen intonation saying, "Mom, no. NO. Just--no." I look up to see my mom doing an old cheer routine to my dad's marching band impression, her arms pumping victoriously and her knees high in the air, as Blake looks away in sixteen-year-old embarrassment. Huck's eyes are the size of dinner plates.

"Grants Pass High!" my dad shouts at the end, and the oven finishes preheating. Ding!

Sundays make us slaphappy. I'm sure I've already said that.


  1. I see that photo and the only thing that pops to mind is, "The power of Christ compels you! The power of Christ compels you!"

    Nothing meant by that, but he does look a little freaked out. ;)

  2. Sundays are the best! (Haha, that picture just says the whole story there too! Hilarious!)

    Playing It Cooley

  3. Oh, this makes me miss you guys.

  4. LOL @ RORY! I can definitely picture that and it just made that picture even funnier.

    I love that your family bursts into random song. I'm the only person in my house that does it, and it's nothing at all like Glee.

  5. Hahahaha what an awesome little family story

  6. hahahahahaha, this made me laugh SO hard.

  7. I. Love. this. story. The end.

  8. BAHAHA! I laughed out loud the whole time while reading this. Great story Nat.



  9. I don't know you. And my husband thinks it's creepy that I read blogs of people I don't know. But how can I resist when you are so funny and such a good writer? Seriously? And when your baby is adorable and shares a name with my husband and my future baby and looks like my nephew? I'm not a creeper I promise.


  10. Tori, I don't get your husband's logic, especially when I try to apply it to books. I don't know Sam Shepard, but I genuflect at his work. Same with Neil Simon and Stephen Sondheim.

  11. I bought a striped t-shirt at Target today--because of you. :)

  12. oh, huck!

    i also loved this story.

  13. This might be my favorite post you've ever done. As a former choir nerd myself, I would have been slap happy just for the opportunity to sing. What really made this my favorite post is what your parents did right after the song...Bahaha, parents are entertaining sometimes.

  14. Isn't it WONDERFUL to be with family who are all as slap happy as you? I had to laugh at the outsider line, poor Holbsy, but I completely understood it...poor Jeremy.

    You know, I love Jeremy with all of my heart, and if I had to choose between him and my family, I would choose him easily (thankfully, I don't have to choose!) but there's just something good-feeling about being with people who join in the wackiness whole-heartedly without fondly inserting a "You're so silly" from time to time. You know?

  15. You wouldn't believe how much this reminds me of my family. Right down to the embarrassed 16 year old brother named Blake. Love your blog.

  16. This story and picture are soo funny! I am laughing out loud, at work (where I am not supposed to be looking at blogs)!

  17. Good to know my family isn't the only strange family out there. ;) This is too funny!


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