It's summer in the south. Daily temperatures are reaching the upper 90's with heat indexes of 105 (in the shade) and humidity levels are hovering at 60%.
Every time a door gets opened in our house, even if it's shut immediately, our air-conditioning unit cuts on, trying it's best to combat the cloud of heat and humidity that's just been let in by a Storm member, no doubt, along with at least three more flies.
Being outside for more than five minutes will gives your skin the same results as a facial.
Swimming between the hours of 11-4 isn't even an option because everyone agrees, including the children, it's just too hot to swim. And if we don't get a daily rain shower, the pool feels like bath water by the evening, and who wants to swim in that??
Along with the heat brings wardrobe challenges. I don't want any more layers than are absolutely necessary clinging to my half-heat stroked body. So that means the lighter, more flowy the dress, the better. Especially on Sunday mornings, when I'm having to chase/carry/drag our little Storm, and all their necessities into the church building.
Just walking from the parking lot to the building, toting Hail or Flash Flood on my hip (because one or both are usually shoeless) and a giant diaper bag stocked to the brim with crayons, books, toys that don't make (much) noise, snacks, sippy cups, Flash Flood's blankie(s), diapers, wipes, more snacks, and more toys, and of course our Bible, can cause heat exhaustion.
It's often said that "southern women don't sweat, they glisten." Well, that's not entirely true. Because I sweat. Like a boy. And feeling sweat drip down your back is never fun. Especially when you're in a place like church, where you're not supposed to sweat. Unless you've got something to be worried about. Ahem.
For these reasons, I've always appreciated that our church building's thermostat is kept very low. The unit runs non-stop during operating hours. And for me, that's a good thing. Or it was. Until this past Sunday...
The sermon hadn't even begun when Flash Flood had out worn his welcome in "Big Church" as the Storm refers to it. He'd already flipped through every board book, scribbled on several coloring pages (and hymnal pages), and munched on all the pretzels his tummy could handle. During a scripture reading, Flash Flood squealed repeatedly, "I wanna PWAY! PWAY! I WANNA PWAY WIF KAY! Gooooo! Pway wif Kay, pwease?! PWEASE! PWAY!! GOOOO!" (Kay is what Flash Flood calls his girlfriend, and he knew she was in the nursery playing.)
I quickly gathered the squealer, and his blankie, threw him up on my hip and tried to exit the pew before anymore pleas interrupted fellow worshipers. As I stepped into the aisle, I felt a cool breeze, and remembered all too late that a floor vent was blowing, full blast. My dress flew up, Marilyn Monroe style. Though I'm certain I looked much more like Mary Katherine Gallagher as I awkwardly tried to push my dress back over my four month pregnant body (and maternity panties), all while holding on to a squealing 1 1/2 year old.
I nearly went forward at the end of the sermon, to issue a public apology to all who were unfortunate enough to witness my Marilyn Monroe/Mary Katherine Gallagher crisis.
Embarrassing moments... The story of my life.