Sunday, March 4, 2018

Seven Days of Thirty-Five

I have been so tired this week. Not during the day, but every night around 10:30 I can barely keep my eyes open. This is extremely unlike me- usually I don't even think of heading to bed until 11 and even then I often don't go there until midnight (approximately 90% of my blog posts are published between 11:50-11:59 p.m., and that's because I often backdate the posting time because it annoys me when I finish at 12:05 a.m. and the post dates itself on the new day. I feel strongly that the original day isn't done until I go to bed). And yet, this week I've re-watched all of Season 1 of The Great British Baking show because answering emails or blogging or planning more details of the Spring Break road trip we're embarking on in 7 days seemed too hard. I cried (AGAIN) at the Great British Baking Show finale (James: "Again?! Seriously, what is wrong with you?" Me: "It's just that she worked so hard and she's SO HAPPY."), I read two books (JR Ward's latest BDB book was actually not terrible! It's part of the spin-off series though, so maybe that's why?) while laying sideways on the couch. I went to bed BEFORE JAMES two times and fell asleep before he came to bed, something that has maybe never happened. If there weren't multiple medical reasons we can't be pregnant I would 100% think that's what was going on.

Instead, it seems that getting up at 3 a.m. on a Saturday and then going to bed at 1:30 a.m. on a Wednesday just kind of makes you tired. Or 35 makes you old. And/or 10:30 isn't really all that crazy early to want to go to bed. Or all of that. Let's break down the week and decide. It was a good one! But as I type it out, I'm realizing it was more full than it seemed at the time. Importantly, though probably not linked to my early bedtimes, I wore a different new birthday shopping trip item every day and sent pictures to my parents so they could see I was wearing their gifts. We like that.


First up, Monday! I wore my new birthday dress, went out to eat with co-workers (Lili's Gorgonzola fries forever), made a very fast dinner (pasta + TJ's jarred sauce, and just as I was feeling guilty about that Landon asked, "oh are we having the red sauce from the jar? YES!!") and got all the kids to Claire's school musical performance a full five minutes early. Claire was Clownfish #2 and her costume was to wear crazy mismatching clothes. She took it very seriously.

Claire LOVES musicals and performances so this was right up her alley. "I just wish I could do this every day," she sighed when it was over.

James had to miss because of his lessons, and though I'd fed the kids before we left they were all hungry again at 7:30 and I didn't really want the "pasta with the red sauce from the jar" nor did I think we needed to go back to my non-birthday reality yet (I mean, it had only been the day before), we decided to meet at R Taco on his way in from the pool and our way out of school. My margarita was delicious and filled in the tiny bits of space in my stomach still full from lunch (seriously, those Gorgonzola fries).

Tuesday was normal and I cooked dinner for the first time since I was 34. But then, on Wednesday I had a girls night out birthday wine night at a nearby super cute local wine car and it was WONDERFUL. I got home from work and showered and re-did my hair because I'd gone to yoga at lunch and have far higher standards for my friends than my family or coworkers.

My fellow birthday girl's husband drove the lot of us to the wine bar and we proceeded to fill a table and probably dominate the whole space for the next 3 hours until it closed. It was the best night.

I love these women. They are strong and smart and freaking amazing. I haven't had a girls night in months/years. We need more of them.

And so we had one right after we got home. It was pouring rain, James was working, I was WAY too hopped up on wine and cheese to go to bed- my extrovert battery basically sparking with excess energy, and I got a text from my friend down the street, "I'm still starving. I want pancakes." My friend five houses in the other direction texted back, "Old South? I'll drive." And at 11:30 p.m. I left my house for a 24-hour pancake house that is an institution and that I have never seen outside the hours of 8-9 a.m. I was wearing my sequin leggings, a giant sweatshirt, and my Hunter rain boots. And the bra I had to put back on when I realized this was seriously happening.

We got back home around 1:00? I have no idea. I stripped off my clothes and boots in a line to my bed and fell fast asleep. At 6:50 a.m. when my alarm went off I was relieved to find last night's hair and makeup still on point and was off to work within 25 minutes. It was the BEST night. And even though I had a headache and was SUPER TIRED and still had to work all day and then teach barre I didn't regret a minute. You can't act 35 all the time. (Or maybe that is the best highest version of 35?)

I do know that Cora is the best highest version of herself at all times and seeing her outfits every morning when she bursts into our room yelling, "MAMA!!" because she hasn't seen me in HOURS while she was sleeping is one of the very best moments of my day. Even when I have a headache and got 5 hours of sleep.

That night Cora picked out the girls' pj's and story and Claire did the reading. They don't fight much yet (Landon and Claire just figured out how to annoy each other about a year ago, so I'm hoping we still have some time? Maybe?) and as Cora gets older and can participate in Claire's world of creative play, it is so fun to watch them together. All Claire wants are people around her to play school, cash register, and/or vet clinic. All the time. Over and over. Cora is game for this.

On Friday I ended up subbing a surprise barre class which was wonderful because I love being back in my old studio AND because I was still working off some wine from two nights before. In the last 3.5 days I've taught barre twice and been to yoga three times. My whole body feels strong and stable and wrung out in the best possible way, which will feel perfect until I go on a week-long road trip in a car filled with all the snacks that Costco sells. It's a balance. On Friday night we had our fancy (and delayed, twice) Valentine's/Birthday dinner date night at our fave fancy place. I didn't force James to take pictures, but I can tell you that every bite and every minute were wonderful. And also why I needed more yoga. Balance!

Speaking of Costco, we had a fairly quiet weekend with only a soccer game on the schedule, so I got to check off several errands at a leisure pace sprinkled throughout the weekend along with a few extra yoga classes. Costco was one of them and while you can absolutely end up spending way too much money there, I've found that certain products are simply a necessity for our life and the quality/value combination is better there than anywhere else (the organic ground beef/turkey/bison! organic eggs! organic pantry staples like black beans and diced tomatoes and tomato sauce! ALL the granola bars and trail mixes ever made!). Particularly when your family of 5 eats for 12.

Claire also had her first soccer game on Saturday morning! We realized, an hour before the game was to begin, that I'd accidentally given away her old uniform shorts in a fit of spring cleaning. She never wears shorts! Why would we keep these? (Because they match her soccer uniform, which is why she had them in the first place!) Luckily another parent came to the rescue with another pair of girls size small soccer shorts in a different color. You can't be picky when you have a mom who gives things away anything that sits still for too long. Luckily our team had already ordered new uniforms, they just hadn't come in yet.

I did, at least, keep her jersey. Something about having her name on it made me think she'd need it again. The game was fun- the girls have only been able to have one practice because of all our nonstop rain, and the field is 2x the size, and they all have actual positions now, so it was a little hectic, but no one seemed overwhelmed or discouraged. And we won! I think we officially even keep score now. Cora rocked it third-baby style with her own chair, a bag of princesses, sequin tutu, and a mini pizza she couldn't finish before we left so I threw into a ziploc baggie and tucked into her princess toy bag.

When we got home, the kids were so inspired and excited by their one day of sunshine, they begged to take the pool cover off so they could go swimming, ignoring for the moment that 20 minutes of sunshine does not heat a covered, shaded, deep and large pool of winter water.

The goggles just kill me. So optimistic.

(They were not used.)

Today the kids all volunteered to run errands with me and I had to capture their outfits. The girls as bold and fashion-forward as always. And Landon, inspired by his sisters' senses of style exclaimed, "Mom look! I'm wearing my TALL socks and I'm not even roller-blading!"

And then a few moments later, "Do you think it looks okay?"

Nailing it dude. Nailing it. He then picked out a new set of socks at Kohl's and was so excited about them I had to buy them. (Under Armor. Crew style. "I just love the design mom, which one is your favorite?")

The rest of the day was more roller-blading, soccer skills practice with James for Claire, an amazing yoga class for me (8-angle pose! in a flow! and I did it!), some fort building, watching Wonder as a family (so good; I cried, freaking out the kids yet again), a stew simmering on the stove, and opening up our new game of Clue to all play after dinner. It was an absolutely lovely, simple weekend.

And now, for some delicious things for the week ahead:

Sunday: 15 Bean Soup (okay recipe, needed more flavor; next time I'm 2-3x the spices), with cornbread muffins (TJ's box mix because it is the best one I've ever tried).

Monday: Meatloaf (1 lb. ground beef + this homemade seasoning mix + diced fresh onion + 1 cup panko crumbs + glaze of equal parts ketchup and mustard; bake 1 hour), mashed potatoes, steamed green beans and carrots. I forgot about meatloaf for like 8 years and then rediscovered it. This seasoning mix and combination of recipes is my favorite and the kids LOVE IT.

Tuesday: Leftover creamy chicken noodle soup from Saturday, now with grilled cheeses to keep it exciting, served either before or after my PTA Board meeting. (Or both, probably both.)

Wednesday: Turkey Lettuce Wraps (this recipe as a base, plus chopped fresh bok choy, carrot, and water chestnuts), with steamed dumplings (from frozen, usually TJ's, this time Costco thanks to a well-timed sample and sale; these are Landon's favorite food), and probably not the lettuce because I like eating things in bowls.

Thursday: Crockpot taco chicken (chicken + taco seasoning + jar of salsa; cooked on low then shredded) wrapped in tortillas or put on chips for nachos because I'm taking testimony that day and trying VERY HARD not to also take myself out for a margarita after I teach barre as tradition demands (I have margarita mix at home; I can be strong).

Friday: BBQ chicken quinoa salad with the extra chicken (tossed in bbq sauce, layered with all the delicious bbq quinoa salad-y things).


  1. If you can believe this, I clicked to enlarge the Costco grocery cart photo, to see in detail what you bought. LOL, I hate shopping there, on weekends particularly, but the deals do seem hard to beat on certain things. It's a conundrum.

    1. I can TOTALLY believe that. I LOVE peeking at other people's shopping carts! And yes, it can be an overwhelming stop, but I've found if I go early it helps and just stay focused on what I need and then get the heck out. I also only go once a month, so that helps a lot! By the time I need to go again, I really need to go and will just suck it up and soldier in!

  2. I saw this and thought of you and where you are on your journey with L-

    1. That was beautiful and has to be so very true. I need to read it weekly.