Sunday, April 29, 2018

Just a Nice Little Saturday (and Thursday, and the other days too)

I'm sitting out in the front yard right now because it is beautiful outside and I spent the morning at yoga and then rage-cleaning out the girls' closet (zomg my adorable little pack-rat hoarder middle child OMG) and now need fresh air to balance my soul. There is a gentle breeze and the temperature is 80 degrees. I can feel the balancing.

The kids are playing in a mud ring they've created around the base of our giant tree because "playing with dirt" is now Cora's FAVORITE activity and she's good at making the big kids do whatever she wants.

Yesterday was a great day. Full and busy and a good snapshot of life with 3 bigger kids. It started with lounging a bit in bed with James while the big kids watched a show and Cora read books in her room because she threw a fit for our nanny on Thursday afternoon and that is a big no no and missing out on Saturday morning shows was the worst punishment we could give. We emerged about 8:00 (I remember when getting up at 8 on a Saturday was early, now it's the hard-earned victorious result of big kids getting old enough to make their own breakfasts and turn on the TV and a toddler feeling penitent and staying quietly in her room) and James made French Toast while I planned our meals for the week ahead and put together the grocery list. At 9:15 James and Landon headed out for his swim camp while the girls and I ran to Target and Trader Joe's before stopping back home to put away the food, make some light lunches, and get Claire changed for soccer. At 11:15 Claire declared her red soccer shorts missing and after 15 minutes of searching, we threw her in a black skort over leggings and headed late to the fields. When your child never wears shorts, you don't own any shorts except the one pair that came with her pricey soccer uniform so it's really bad if she LOSES THEM somewhere in her hoarder's hoarding space I used to call a closet.

The game started at 12:00 and we got there at 11:50. James and Landon rolled up at 12:01 and we all watched Claire play. She continues to love the game and is getting more aggressive and it's so fun to see. The kids all switched over to James's car on the way home so I could stop for two quick errands and he could take them to get hair cuts on the way back. I ran in the house at 1:30, dumped the results of my errands (birthday gifts for my niece!) on my bed, changed for yoga, and ran back out for the 2:00 class where I did many handstands and sweated A LOT. James and the kids got home around 2:30, half of them with new haircuts (Cora was not part of that half, much to her chagrin and oft-repeated insistence that "my hair is getting bigger mom, it IS.") and they played and engaged in general shenanigans while he worked on summer swim lesson registrations.

At soccer, still wearing her Disney braids

I got home a sweaty mess at 3:15 in time to eat a late lunch and shower before our final Casa Manana children's play of the 2017-2018 season - Beauty and the Beast! I even blow dried my hair. Theater should be fancy.

It was a FANTASTIC show. The final one of the season is always particularly wonderful and the kids declared it the best one yet, which is saying something after 4 years and 20 shows. Cora did fact check it throughout and was disappointed by several errors, "Mom, my Belle is carrying a RED book, but it should be a BLUE book." Don't mess with Cora on princess plot points.

Landon had a birthday party down the street that started at 6:30 so he was most eager for Belle and the Beast to finally get together at the end. As soon as the actors took their bows, he was racing up the aisle and we had no choice but to follow, though without car keys or the ability to drive I'm not sure where he thought he was going. Once home he ran in the house, changed, and then raced off to our friend's house for the 10th birthday celebration before we'd even walked down the driveway. Many girls and one other boy were in attendance- Landon had a blast. We headed the opposite way down the street to another friend's house for an impromptu fajita cookout with homemade cucumber margaritas. I threw some items from our pantry that seemed appropriate (black beans? margarita mixer? half a bag of chips?) into a bag and the girls took off on their scooters.

Everyone stayed up too late and had an excellent time. I walked over to collect Landon around 9:30 just as the girls were moving on to the pillow fight portion of the sleepover party. Someday he'll be really sad he missed out on that. As it was he talked nonstop for the whole 3 minute walk home about something something lattes something water balloons something something really good burger. So it was a good time.

And that was Saturday! I remember when the kids were busy little toddlers I thought that having independent bigger kids would mean a return to lazy weekends. But no. Bigger kids and no naps just means you can do stuff all day. You don't have to- and we certainly still have many days with little on the schedule and much lounging about, but I love the crazy days. Interacting with as many as people as possible in a day is me living my best life.

Speaking of life- let's go back to Thursday and Take Your Kids to Work Day at the SEC!

It was our 6th year participating at the SEC and the kids' understanding of my job remains vague and murky, but their understanding of the awesomeness of elevator buttons, picture ID entry cards, and the park by my office they think I play in every day remains crystal clear.

2013: Look at those cheeks!

2018: Now with an extra helper!

The view from my 19th floor lobby was declared "amazing" and I can't wait to see what they think of downtown Chicago next week.

This year the kids toured the fire station near my office, so rather than figuring out what federal securities lawyers do, they're just going to be firepersons instead.

They only participated in the morning events (breakfast, fire station tour, park playing, and pizza) before James picked them up to go back to school so they could attend a big party they earned as part of the school fundraiser. Tough day for them.

I got a little work done in the afternoon before heading to my second job teaching barre at TCU while the kids went to James's job for swim lessons. Shift change!

On Friday I got to do a little job shifting again when I subbed for an early morning barre class at my old studio. I have exciting news brewing for teaching a new class at the studio, so I borrowed James's tiny tripod and got a few quick pics while the studio was empty and the sun was rising. I took my first ever barre class in that studio and that barre will always be home for me.

The rest of the day was good and then made better by a date night at one of our favorite local restaurants HG Sply that night. I had been forced to smell its deliciousness as I went to late night yoga the Monday before and had been thinking about it all week. HG has the most beautiful food right on the river and it was such a perfect bit of escape together at the end of the week.

James ordered a roasted carrot hummus and pulled pork nachos to start. I don't like hummus, but will admit that one was pretty good, and the nachos were fantastic. James went with the burger entree (delish and sufficiently filling for my Phelpsian eater) but I got the true star of night: Beet Poke (ponzu marinated beets, avocado, cucumber, carrots, edamame, watermelon radish and green onions over toasted sesame kale & white seaweed salad topped with crispy rice).

SO GOOD I just cannot even.

Dessert was Banana Nut Bread Pudding (banana-walnut bread pudding flash fried in coconut oil, topped with almond milk ice cream & candied walnuts over caramel and bruléed bananas) and it was delicious. (Though not as delicious as my magical beet poke.)

The evening was gorgeous and we walked along the river for a while, stopping at a food truck spot to read menus and make plans for a family night there soon. I love this town.

Friends are about to come over to swim. The pool is going to be freezing, but the kids insist they won't care and the margaritas I'm about to make will taste delicious as I sit on the side not even pretending I'm willing to get a toe wet yet. I've got Chili Rubbed Pulled Pork going in the crock pot and a short week ahead before we head to my favorite city in the US Thursday morning. Happy Sunday to you all!

1 comment:

  1. I found your blog a few years ago through Sarah's (theshubox) and I love reading your posts. We live in Dallas but I taught at TCU for four years, so I can relate to many of your family adventures in Forth Worth and around the Metroplex. Your neighborhood is so pretty, I imagine it is the one I used to drive through off University Drive as I made my way off I-30 over o the university on my daily commute. MY children are older than yours (14 and 12) so it's fun for me to read about your younger family and the joy you feel in raising them in Forth Worth. I particularly love your recipe recaps. :-)