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daybook family fun

Daybook: March 18, 2020 | The Great Hibernation of 2020 Edition

Bellinis with breakfast because 🤷‍♀️

Outside My Window: there is snow on the ground because Mother Nature thinks she is very very funny. The kids asked for a snow day this year. Does this count?

In all seriousness, this is supposed to be our Spring Break but like everyone else across the globe it seems, we are inside self quarantined indefinitely due to the Coronavirus situation. I have no idea when the kids will be able to return to school or we’ll be able to do little things like dine in a restaurant or see a movie. Trying to accept this new normal one day at a time.

We are very lucky to be relatively comfortable in this chaos. We are all healthy at the moment, we have enough food and my husband will be able to work from home. Currently my biggest problem is the care and keeping of a family of introverts.

I Am Hearing: the hum of the dishwasher in the kitchen and the kids upstairs playing with Legos because I’m a genius. Or a person with online access to geniuses.

I am Thinking: way too much really. I’m oscillating between everything’s fine and remembering something else we’ll need to reschedule. Karate classes have gone digital. The big piano recital is cancelled. The big end of year 8th grade trip is hovering in a state of uncertainty. My son turns 14 in 3 weeks and I’m not sure when we’ll officially celebrate with people other than our little foursome.

I am Reading: The Alice Network with my book club which is doing a decent job of putting things in perspective. While I worry about missing out on coffee with school moms, the characters in my book are dealing with world wars and espionage and the unfair treatment of women in the 1910’s-1940’s.

I’m also reading Don’t Overthink It by Anne Bogel on my Kindle and it’s almost laughable how timely it has found me. Of course my overthinking has taken on a more serious tone than usual, but the advice in the book has been helpful and often feels like Anne has been listening in on my conversations or something.

Week Recap: it’s been a weird week so far, that’s for sure! Going to the grocery store now constitutes an outing and alone time. We’ve watched Captain America, Toy Story 1 and 2, High School Musical 2 and 3 and we’re halfway through Season 6 of Doctor Who. We pulled out the telescope Monday night and went for a hike yesterday that seriously kicked my butt. I’ve been cleaning up a storm, finally filing a bunch of old bills, cleaning and decluttering the kitchen and the office. Planning to play Pandemic tonight with the kids because I can’t resist.

I’m looking forward to: things getting back to normal someday but also kind of enjoying the forced slow down. We’ll see how I feel about it next week though when the novelty has worn off.

Picture Thought:

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daybook family fun

Daybook | January 30th

Outside My Window: It’s another gray morning in Wisconsin. I’m trying not to grumble about the weather because it’s not overly cold and it’s not snowing but it’s been overcast and chilly all week and I miss the sun.

I Am Hearing: Literal silence and I gotta be honest, it’s glorious. The kids are at school, the dog is sleeping and I have another hour to myself before I go serve lunch at the school. We have a busy afternoon today so I’m trying to catch some zen now.

I am Thinking: about what I should paint next, the book club I’m starting (can you hear me squealing from here?), trying to remember to go to the library later, thinking about looking for Valentine’s for the kids, very excited that my hubby is getting back from a work trip tonight.

I am Reading: I just started reading Waiting for Tom Hanks by Kerry Winfrey last night and I can already tell I’m hooked. The writing is sucking me in, the characters seem fun. I’m all in!

My book club is following Reese Witherspoon’s book club but we’re going about it late to the party style and reading from the beginning so I also need to track down a copy of Eleanor Oliphant is Completely Fine. I tried reading this a year or two ago and couldn’t get into but I’ve kind of always regretted bailing on it so quickly so this will be a good excuse to give it another try.

Week Recap: It’s been a busy week with lots of karate, homework woes, my teenager serving Culver’s for a school fundraiser, all my usual mom volunteering and stuff. Tonight is more karate. Tomorrow is my ten year old’s next spirit squad performance. Basically I’m a really underpaid chauffeur and have nothing original to say about it.

I’m looking forward to: having my hubby home and a laid back weekend ahead.

Picture Thought:

My daughter has joined the dark side. And by that I mean she finished this awesome watercolor picture for the school art fair. Ask me about how last minute she finished it.


It’s almost Friday guys! We can do it!

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daybook family fun

Daybook: February 7th 2019.

Outside My Window: we’re having another super fun snow day, or rather a snow and ice storm day. This makes our 6th day of cancelled school this year. Crazy sauce. I’m not really disappointed but I’m also not in Super Fun Mom Mode either.

I Am Hearing: my daughter giggling over YouTube and my son narrating his choices while playing the Sims. He’s building our family in the Sims-verse. Kinda cool.

I am Thinking: about suggesting a non-screentime activity soon but I’m also feeling tired and maybe content to keep phoning it in until lunch at least. I’m also thinking about all of the carb-based foods that I’d like to be eating because it’s day 4 of me being on a diet so all of the “bad” foods sound amazing.

I am Reading: Isla and the Happily Ever After by Stephanie Perkins, the sequel of Anna and the French Kiss. I’m about halfway through and intrigued by the plot twist the author just threw at the main characters.

I am Hoping: that the recipe I’m making for dinner tonight comes out okay. I’m playing with a lemon chicken recipe that was originally meant for the crock pot but I’m going to bake it instead, so I’m marinating it in the liquid the recipe had it cooking in instead.

Weekend Update: the weekend itself is honestly a blur. Friday night my daughter had her first Spirit Squad performance and did a great job cheering on the basketball team! Sunday night I made this chicken tikka masala recipe and was met with rave reviews from the hubby.

Plans For The Rest of the Week: well the week is nearly over but tomorrow is the big school pep rally. The kids will find out which classes won Spirit Week competitions and my daughter will have a chance to perform with the Spirit Squad again. Sometime this weekend Dan and I are talking about making fettuccine Alfredo with zucchini noodles because food is the only thing I think about anymore.

Picture Thought:

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daybook family fun

Daybook: January 28th 2019

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Outside My Window: It’s still snowing. It’s been snowing since like 9pm last night and it seems to have no plans of stopping. The kids were ecstatic to get a snow day today and we’ve been making the most of it with all of the board games, a bit of video game time and watching last season’s America’s Got Talent together. We might have even more of this in store this week as there are some horrifically freezing cold temperatures predicted in the next couple of days. Fuuunnnnnn….

I Am Hearing: a Sims baby cooing on the television. I’m trying really hard to be a cool mom so I decided to write in my blog and let them have some YouTube / Video Game time instead of demanding they hang out with me 24/7.

I am Thinking: about all of our upcoming plans for the week and wondering which ones are going to get rescheduled for the weather and just in general trying to accept that I have no control over how this all pans out. It’s, in theory, a very busy week but if The Weather Gods have it their way it might just be even yet more board games and video games.

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51gwhvro6+lI am Reading: a few things right now. I’ve been reading Book One of The Complete Calvin and Hobbes collection, one of my son’s all time favorite things. This has made for nice leisurely reading that I can pick up and put down, although the book itself is massive and a bit heavy. I’m also reading Don’t You Forget About Me by Liz Tipping on my kindle. I just started this one but so far I’m enjoying it. It’s a fairy light read, a British romantic comedy where the main character is hoping to rewrite her high school history at her upcoming reunion.

I am Hoping: the roads are relatively clear when my husband comes home from work tonight. I really don’t have a great reason to fret as our town is good about plowing and my husband drives a four wheel drive pickup and is a good driver. But I’m me, so I’m going to worry anyway.

Weekend Update: We had a nice weekend. I went to a friend’s house on Saturday night for a Mom’s Game Night and had so much fun. We played several games and also spent a lot of time just being goofy and singing along to old songs together. It’s kind of awesome getting to spend time with “your people” – I’m glad I’ve found some great friends here. Last night our good friends came over for dinner with their new baby and that was a lot of fun, too. The kids loved getting to play with their eldest daughter who is 2 1/2 and I got to spend a good bit of time holding the wee little bairn so all was right with the world.

Plans For The Week: Ha! I guess it depends on Mother Nature but we have Spirit Week at school in theory, the big pep rally on Friday and my daughter is cheering on the basketball game on Friday. There’s an Aladdin viewing party at the school this week to get the school psyched for this year’s school play. I have a dentist appointment to either go to or reschedule. And in theory the Mom Friends and I are going to play Team Trivia this week, too.

Picture Thought:

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She’s got School Spirit even on a Snow Day | Celebrating Pajama Day at home!

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daybook family fun

Daybook: January 14th 2019

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Outside My Window: it’s one of those days that feels even colder than it is. It was supposedly up to the 30’s today but it pretty much felt like 7 degrees all day to me. I guess I probably need to buckle up and brace myself for the rest of this winter, but apparently I like to complain about it every day like it’s something new that’s never happened before.

I Am Hearing: my son doing homework on his laptop while my daughter stomps around her room loudly so that we all know she is BORED and HAS NOTHING TO DO. Also listening to the traffic on our street, hoping to hear the dulcet sound of my husband’s truck pulling up the driveway.

I am Thinking: about summer because that’s what winter does to me. Rather than dwell on the fact that it’s cold and life is busy, I’m planning camping trips, possible weekends to visit the ren faire and our summer vacation plans. I’ve also been thinking about what I want the regular days of summer to look like this year. I’m considering saying sayonara to the whole summer day camp thing because honestly I think I might be over it. Am I crazy? We’d still do swim lessons, but I’m thinking if my kids want to go to an “art camp” that I could just do art with them instead.

I am Reading:  I’m still reading Jeneration X by Jen Lancaster but there’s a very good chance that I’ll finish the book tonight (finally). I’m also listening to This Will Only Hurt a Little by Busy Phillips on audio right now.

I am Hoping: that my son isn’t up all night with homework. Monday’s are kind of our trying to be in eight places at once night and the end result is that it feels like homework time will never end. Would it be rude of me to watch Jeopardy while he’s in the next room doing math problems?

Weekend Update: We picked up books at the library for the kids’ various research projects (Titanic for him; Elizabeth Blackwell for her). My husband installed new smoke detectors that talk to each other in unison like the Ood. We went to a friend’s house for dinner and a game night. Probably other stuff happened, too.

Plans For The Week: Babysitting my friend’s toddler so they can squeeze in one more date night before the new baby comes. My daughter’s first time cheering during a school basketball game. PTO meeting. Trivia =) . And a long weekend to look forward to.

Picture Thought:

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daybook

Daybook: January 7th, 2019

 

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Remember Monday “daybook” posts? I used to do them a lot but fell out of the practice. My friend Jean over at Working Momma 247 just posted one and I felt all kinds of back in the day blogging about it so I decided to play along on my blog, too! Let’s harken back to the ye old days of blogging in 2010 (so retro), shall we?

Outside My Window: it’s finally stopped raining but it’s still kind of damp and chilly. It was in the 40’s again today though so I suppose I should count my blessings that it’s light coat and a sweater weather instead of squall parka weather… for now.

I Am Hearing: parents chattering and kids making karate shouts and my daughter narrating her homework progress to me as I type this. We’re at our second after school activity for the night and still have my oldest’s homework and the eating of dinner to go when we leave here. Still we’re nearing the finish line of a very busy afternoon and look at me blogging like a multitasking pro with a laptop and stuff.

49690827_10101716518295786_6550858727459651584_oI am Thinking: about all of the travel plans for the coming year that I need to finalize and all of the every day grown up stuff I need to get done also. Then there’s that pesky desire to spend time on creative pursuits like my current work in fiction progress and also I’m dabbling with watercolors now for funsies and well rounded life goals. Also apparently people exercise?

I am Reading: Enders Game by Orson Scott Card on my kindle and still kind of not quite getting into it. I hear such good things though so I’m soldiering on and waiting for the plot to really grab me. On my nightstand I’m still reading Jeneration X by Jen Lancaster. Love her and I find the short essays perfect for nighttime reading where I have a tendency to be sporadic and less than attentive.

I am Hoping: that dinner tastes good tonight. I’ve got this low carb Zuppa Toscana soup cooking in my slow cooker – we love this soup at Olive Garden and I’m hoping the recipe does the original justice despite the changes made for a low carb diet. Tis the season, huh? Either way, I’m glad that dinner will be waiting for us at the end of this busy day.

Weekend Update: Dan and I went on a lovely afternoon date on Saturday thanks to my BFF who offered to babysit. We went to a wine bar and tried a few samples and glasses of different wines and shared a cheese plate. Then we went next door to the coffee and yarn store to browse yarn and have a cup of tea. We played a couple games of cribbage later that night – I was really out of practice but managed to win one of the games we played. Yesterday I had coffee with friends, one of whom has been living in India as an expat for several years now so it’s always exciting when we can get together.

Plans For The Week: Coffee with a school mom, trivia with the girls, BB’s first after school art class, a dentist appointment, lunch at hubby’s office, a school geography bee and a game night over the weekend are just a few of the things we’ll be getting up to this week.

Picture Thought:

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life on the weekend looks like this.

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daybook family fun

Daybook: January 18, 2016

Outside My Window: It’s pretty cold out there with a windchill of even colder. I heard that several schools cancelled today due to cold weather. Luckily for us we already had the day off because of Martin Luther King Jr. Day. We will have to brave the elements in a couple of hours to go to Parent Teacher conferences though.

12347612_10100804172129816_3466193175543782033_nI Am Thinking: that my new shampoo for my new red hair might be irritating my skin. There are other suspects (possibly my winter hat or pillowcase?) but the more I think about it, the more the shampoo seems like the most obvious suspect. So I’m planning to try using my old shampoo next time I shower to see if the problem goes away. Cross your fingers for me!

I Just Watched: Galavant last night and I continue to adore the heck out of that show. The actors are all so talented and somehow I’m never annoyed when the singing starts. I was bummed when I thought it got cancelled after one season and I’m disappointed that this season won’t be very long but just trying to enjoy it while it lasts. I think every night I say, “Can you believe that’s the same guy who played Lassiter on Psych????” We’re also loving Big Bang Theory and Modern Family and terribly missing Doctor Who and Sherlock.

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I Just Read: Bellweather Rhapsody by Kate Racculia. It took me awhile to warm up this one, largely because I had to get used to each narrator and accept the fact that the author doesn’t always tell the truth right away sometimes even in the same sentence it seemed she would write in one direction and then be like jk that didn’t happen. But eventually the characters began to find little corns of my heart to nestle themselves in and the mystery itself became enticing enough that I found myself wanting to follow it through to the other side and I was pleasantly surprised when I found that NONE of my suspicions were correct and the author had managed to write a mystery that I could not predict the outcome to.

I Am Hearing: The dishwasher do it’s humming little dance of reassurance that something is in fact getting cleaned around here. The kids are rather plugged into their kindles this morning but after I finish this post, I’m planning to go rally the troups and do something more active.

Weekend Wrap Up: The kids worked on decorating their cars for the Pinewood Derby next weekend. MM’s car looks very futuristic and sleek. BB’s car looks like a disco ball of silver glitter. Obviously. It was also my last day of work at Target Optical on Saturday as I am planning to switch to just subbing now which I think will work a lot better for my family’s schedule.

We went out to dinner at PF Changs on Saturday after a moment of hesitation because everything on the menu is chinese food, including the kids menu. But Dan had this moment of like “Nope, I’m done catering to their whims!” which we’ve said before in a “This is your dinner, eat it or go suck an egg,” kind of way (but kinder, I promise). But that night he had this genius moment of ah ha where he came up with an Adventurous Eater Contest. Whichever kid tried the most new things without complaining would get to pick a dessert and even where that dessert would happen. They were so game for this and ended up trying all sorts of new things that they never would have touched like crab rangoon, mongolian beef, lo mein, crispy honey chicken and rice (which probably only sounds impressive in my household but seriously guys, my daughter ate and enjoyed RICE) and egg drop soup.

So last night we took them to Culvers for ice cream as a reward for their incredibly adventurous and successful dining experience the night before. We’re planning to make this a regular occurrence.

Plans For The Week: Parent Teacher conferences today. I’m going to Team Trivia on Wednesday and the kids will be weighing their cars that night for the Pinewood Derby so we’ll probably want to put wheels on them and stuff. I need to majorly clean the house and maybe cook an actual meal at some point.

Picture Thoughts: 

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Another moment of genius that is working like magic in our house right now.

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daybook family fun

Daybook: November 9 and 10, 2015

Outside My Window: The sun is starting to set which is super depressing because it’s only 5pm. It’s been a weird November with some mornings that feel like you expect November to feel – super chilly, grab the winter coat and give yourself five extra minutes to scrape the windshield. But we also still have days where I find myself outside in a short sleeve t-shirt and I remain unwilling to part with my sandals. I have like every sweater and jacket and tank top in rotation still and it’s confusing.

I Am Thinking: That I should probably tell MM to get ready for karate but there are no grown ups around to tell me to stop goofing off online and be responsible. Oh wait, I’m the grown up, aren’t I? Darn.

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The Alchemist by Paulo Coelho
The Alchemist by Paulo Coelho

I’m Reading: The Alchemist by Paulo Coehlo because Macklemore keeps telling me to. I’m counting it as the book I should have read in high school for Modern Mrs. Darcy’s 2015 reading challenge. That leaves me with just two more categories to finish. A book written in another language (which this book could qualify for also) and a book recommended by my mother. I have both books picked out, I just need to actually read them.

I Just Watched: the latest episode of Top Model and I’m still in disbelief that the show was cancelled. What am I going to do next season without mocking a handful of teenagers on their ability or inability to smize and find their light when my six year old excels at these things like it’s her job. Seriously, it’s the end of an era.

I Am Hearing: my daughter complain to me about which jacket she wants to wear at karate because I totally win at mothering right now. I’ll finish this later after karate because clearly she is incapable of dressing appropriately without intervention. Til then…

::ahem:: I’m back nearly 24 hours later. Let’s wrap this up, shall we?

Weekend Wrap Up: Saturday we had a whirlwind day trip of sorts. We drove to IKEA in the next state over where we had lunch and went shopping with friends who drove out with us. We finally bought ourselves a new bedroom set – a new beautiful dresser with matching nightstands and a new bookshelf for my overflowing pile of books which looked like this up until Sunday:

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I’ll post an after picture soon but suffice it to say, all of my books actually fit on the new bookshelf with a little bit of room to grow – yay for not having to get rid of books yet!

We also decided to finally buy BB her own dresser that’s like actually big enough to hold all of her clothes and will even be in her bedroom and everything like she’s a normal child capable of not emptying the contents of her dresser onto her floor everyday. We shall see if that’s true or not!

After IKEA we went to the Medieval Times Dinner & Tournament where we ate like kings (from the medieval times at least) and watched jousting competitions, sword fighting, a falconer falconing and more. It was pretty spectacular and everyone had an absolute blast. We’re all pretty stoked because the knight whose section we were seated in and thus cheering for ended up winning the whole tournament handily. It felt like a sort of rigged operation in that he was quite clearly a more advanced horseback rider and fighter than most of the other knights but maybe we were just biased.

This was both Dan’s early birthday present and his reward for surviving a trip to IKEA with me and the kids. No easy feat.

Plans For The Week: I’m going to see Benedict Cumberbatch in Hamlet tonight with a good friend and tomorrow Dan and I are going to see Craig Ferguson performing live at our local performing arts center place dealio. So this is kind of an outrageously exciting week just for those two events alone. On Friday I’m chaperoning MM’s class field trip to the Lutheran High School which he is somewhat dorkishly excited about so that should be fun, too.

Picture Thoughts: 

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Visiting the torture chamber. You can almost see the metal mask / helmets behind BB that apparently people in medieval times used as a punishment for women who talked too much, or rather were too outspoken against authority figures or men or whatever. So we’ve come a long way, really.

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BB and I taking selfies before the tournament started.

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Cheesy group photo!

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daybook family fun

Daybook: March 10, 2015

windows down weather

Outside My Window: It was in the 50’s today! I almost don’t want to type that because I’m afraid I’ll jinx it but right now the weather is predicting highs in the 50’s and 60’s this week! Like it’s almost spring or something! I am loving the weather today – it’s been light jackets and windows rolled down weather. The snow is nearly melted and the teachers are already talking about rain boots and mud puddles. This winter has not been as awful as it could have been – snowfall wise, New England certainly got way more to complain about than we did. But it’s been bitterly cold and depressingly bleak for long enough. I’m ready to think Spring thoughts.

I Am Thinking: my little man is turning 9 soon and he’s on the cusp between childhood and older kid aged stuff. He still wants to hug and cuddle and sing songs and play games with his sister but he is also reading nearly young adult level books and learning about government and astronomy; multiplication and cornell note taking. Sometimes I worry that we push him too hard and ask too much of him, that he isn’t getting to be a kid enough. I’m hoping to let him play hard this summer to recharge after the school year.

Wolf Hall by Hilary Mantel
Wolf Hall by Hilary Mantel

Gregor the Overlander by Suzanne Collins
Gregor the Overlander by Suzanne Collins

I Am Reading: Wolf Hall by Hilary Mantel which my book club will be discussing at the end of the month. It’s about Thomas Cromwell and Henry VIII and all that jazz. It’s a pretty dense book and taking me awhile to get through.

I’m also reading Gregor the Overlander by Suzanne Collins at the pleading and insistence of my son who is devouring the series at a feverish clip. It’s far less dense and time consuming than Wolf Hall so I’ll probably finish it soon and then devote my attention to book club.

I Just Watched: the first two episodes of The Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt on Netflix. It’s a comedy about a girl who is rescued from a doomsday cult bomb shelter that she’s been living in for 15 years with a handful of other women and the cult’s founder. Now that she’s free, she decides to move to New York City and reinvent herself. Obviously hilarity ensues.

I Am Hearing: my husband and kids figuring out what to make for dinner (I’ll be eating at my board meeting tonight in an hour) and whether or not they will play video games after dinner. It’s a rough life.

Weekend Wrap Up: It was a largely uneventful weekend. I worked late on Saturday, we went out for dinner. Ran errands on Sunday and puttered around. The kids built an epic block castle. Laundry happened.

Plans For The Week: I have a board meeting tonight. My 7th blogiversary is on Friday! I’m working Saturday and Sunday and then Spring Break officially begins! Woohoo!! We have a different spring break than most of the town so it feels kinda like we’re getting away with something crazy but mostly I’m just like “thank you!!! so ready for a break!!!”

Picture Thoughts: 

the epic block castle
the epic block castle in the making…