Saturday, April 13, 2024

What’s For Dinner April 13-19 = skrting = walking with the cbwc

 Saturday: Pasta casserole, green beans, salad

Sunday: Pizza and salad (we did not eat this Friday because we ended up not having dinner together one night and just eating whatever and bumping everything down.)

Monday: Enchilada, chips & salsa, etc

Tuesday: Jack’s bday (steaks, I assume, but I have to do colonoscopy prep sooooooo not for me)

Wednesday: Chicken breast, broccoli, baked potato

Thursday: Grilled bagel sandwiches

Friday: Breakfast for dinner


Walking with the CBWC

Friday, April 12, 2024

5 on a Friday: Small, Happy Things (15/52)

1. I think I mentioned how blown away Minnie was to see herself (finally!) featured in some of the pictures that hang on the walls in my room. I spent 20-some dollars at Walgreens printing pics (gotta love the ever-present Walgreens photo coupon), and voila! Instant Minnie happiness.

2. My terrible rosacea is gone!!! And All I had to do was ditch my pricey skincare routine and buy Aveeno Calm and Restore day cream with SPF, night cream, and anti-aging serum.
3. Minnie spent her Easter cash on a set of twins and a stroller
4. Dorothy bought a giant chicken

5. Minnie 



Tuesday, April 09, 2024


 Like Engie, I was not into eclipse hype. Bad weather last time, other life things unfolding, etc. 

Then on Friday, I got an email from Cooper's school saying they had glasses for all students and would be bringing the kids outside to see it, and I made a cursory attempt to find glasses, thinking everyone else would probably enjoy the experience, too. The ones on Amazon were supposedly not trustworthy, and I didn't want to actually go anywhere during a busy weekend to find them, so my interested faded fast. I thought maybe I could snag a pair from Harry who had to tell freshmen about it for his astronomy class (the high school has a planetarium, and I still think this is just about the coolest thing ever), but then Ben wound up taking him to Eau Claire for the last day of the American Forensic Association national tournament so he could cheer on his future college speech team friends (and so Ben could see some of our oldest and dearest friends from around the country), and the eclipse again fell off my radar.

 But! The day of eclipse dawned SUNNY, and Dorothy had 10:30 dismissal so teachers could do conference prep, and the next visible solar eclipse is in 20 years, and neither of my little girls will be little or will probably experience it with me, and suddenly! Tracking down glasses became my MISSION.

I called ALL OF THE LIBRARIES in a reasonable radius and all of the Hyvees. I called all of the HMOS who advertised distribution and Warby Parker and eye clinics and the high hchool. NO GLASSES, you guys. And people were answering the phone at various businesses with a curt "We are all out of eclipse glasses," so I was not the only idiot who waited until the last second.

Ben got a pair in the UW-Eau Claire admissions office, and the tournament had boxes of them. BUT EAU CLAIRE was CLOUDY. Madison was MOCKING ME with its sun.

I went to the astronomy department's homepage and found that they were distributing glasses on Library Mall for a 1-3pm watch party. I emailed my TAs and asked if anyone could grab an extra pair or 2 and put them in my mailbox, but the only response I got was crickets.

A few pages into my search, I saw a blurb from the UW Space Place, which is the public outreach arm of the astronomy department (all of our science departments do some sort of public outreach/community engagement and education as part of their mission, and it is so neat). They were selling glasses for $2 a pair starting at NOON on 4/8. FINALLY a distribution deadline I hadn't missed yet!

Dorothy and I picked Minnie up and went straight there (definitely out of the way and required highway driving, but I was on a mission, you guys). We joined a super long line that was luckily working its way up a staircase, so we had a place to sit. The woman in front of us was on her phone texting ad using FB Messenger and was apparently planning to buy glasses for everyone she knew. She even said to me, "It might not be worth your time to wait in this line," which I thought was weird because the line was long but not even out the door or anything.

At 11:57, a slim, stern-looking octogenarian volunteer came in with a cash box and a stack of glasses, walked down the stairs, unlocked the Space Place doors, and set herself up at a small table. The line moved efficiently, but when we neared the point of sale, we discovered that the volunteer was only letting each party buy 1 pair of glasses per person, and kids couldn't buy any. That was fine with me, but not with the woman in front of me. She tried to plead her case as the spokesperson for a group, but the volunteer was not messing around.

"What about my mother?" the lady in front of us asked. "She is a senior citizen and can't make it here. I want to buy a pair for my mom."

"Are you going to be with her today?" the volunteer asked.

The woman in front of me sensed a rule-bending coming, and relaxed her shoulders a bit. "I AM," she said, reaching her hand toward the stack of glasses.

The volunteer looked her straight in the eye. "Then you can share your pair with her," she said.


We bought our pair of glasses and headed home for lunching and eclipsing. We kept darting out to the front porch to watch the moon's progression. Minnie never did quite figure out what she was seeing, and she kept trying to explain to me and Dorothy that what we said was the sun was CLEARLY the moon. Dorothy and I loved the creepy, Instagram-filter quality of the light and our short, black shadows. We thought about what we would be doing in 20 years, and Minnie piped up to ask if she'd be 18. I said she'd actually be 23 and wanted to know why she asked, and she said "WHEN I AM 18 MY MOM WILL BE AN OLD LADY," which I must have said to her, and it stuck, hilariously. 

Monday, April 08, 2024

Living her best dance life

 You know, I think we are going to cut down on the number of dances Dorothy does next year. It's not just the expense (although, this is a really really really pricey kid activity, and I say this as someone who has done all of the kid activities). It's that with 6 dances in the same age group, she goes fro. quick change to quick change, and it gets so hectic. I think 4 dances, for example, would still be hectic. 

Still we both had a delightful time this weekend at a competition in our very own town. Her dances did great, and she had a blast with friends. She and I even packed our lunch (because she danced from lunch through dinner, and I was not sure how long Minnie would be with us and how we would be able to get food since Ben was with Coop. But then? I liked having our own food with us so much that I plan to do it again this coming weekend. We snuck up to the rooftop terrace to eat by the lake and didn't have to waste time getting food or waiting for Door Dash, and! I had substantive things to give Dorothy when she got the crabbies instead of thrusting Goldfish and Gushers at her all day-- so, tl;dr will do this again) and had a delightful gossip sesh while we ate.

Since Ben was going to be downtown with Cooper, he dropped me, Dorothy, and Minnie off before the first dance and then picked Minnie up after dive, which was lovely because she got to hang out at dance which she loves, but then she went home before things got super busy. And! I did not have to deal with parking and hauling Dorothy's dance bag around. 

I must remember to wash one of her costume sweatshirts and her sweaty, sweaty gym socks that she wears for 3 numbers. But otherwise, the costumes are hanging back up; her shoes are back in her dance backpack for practice this week. I re-packed all of her costume accessories and threw our extra snacks and box of juice boxes in the travel bag to be a step ahead for next weekend. I have this dance mom thing on lock (CUE MAJOR DANCE-SASTER NOW THAT I SAID THAT OUT LOUD)

Make sure you have body glue for your 11 y/o and all her friends

Walking in! Madison, you are gorg.
Dance besties getting ready for their first number.
My little cheeseball
Minnie ate a picnic on my lap. Cool cool.
Oh my goodness, I bet this pic is cute. I am taking a teeny social media break, otherwise I bet I would see it. Also, I am still doing SAT and I might make a wekeend IG post for my Chatbook subscription-- but otherwise, a total break (hashtag addict)
I asked Minnie to pack some toys to play with. So glad one of them was a witch's broom LOL. She used it as a bat and picked up errant costume feathers to use as balls.
Lunch date

The calm before the quick change storm

Hip hop
Dorothy and her bestie have a little bit to do together in this dance-- love it
After musical theater
Which was after hip hop #3 that I did not take a pick of, so she held her sweaty costmue.
Then an assembly line of older girls came in to change her for jazz since she had literally half a song to get ready and had to wear glued on gloves (again) and double tights, and I got no pics even though that dance is not going to nats, so it only has one more week and a recital-- I will get pics next time!!

Dorothy got to get the award for her hip hop group (not the red and green one) and her bestie got to get the award for her tap group (different than D's tap group), so they had a moment together for 2 different dance, and that was cute, too)
Post dance, waiting for our ride


Sunday, April 07, 2024

What’s For Dinner 4/7-4/13

 What are we eating 4/6, a night I have not planned for in either my dinner posts? IT IS A MYSTERY TO ALL OF US. Dorothy and I were at a dance comp until late. Ben had Minnie and Coop at a dive meet, and the boys had their state speech tournament in a neighboring town. Lots of pizza.


Burgers, watermelon, corn, potato salad, air fried Brussels sprouts


Dino nuggets, Mac and cheese from a box, peaches


Chicken quesadillas, knockoff Chipotle rice, beans, chips and salsa


Grilled chicken salads (with green onions, mandarin oranges, blanched snap peas, red peppers, and chow mein noodles w/ginger guessing) and basked potatoes


Buffalo chicken wraps and fries, salads


Pizza and salad (seems like a Friday winner)

What about you? Anything great on the menu?

SKIRTATHON WEEK 1 (I did not skirt Monday because I stayed home with Minnie all day)