Thursday, April 15, 2021

2 Excellent Things I Found on the Internet

2 excellent things I found on the Internet.

1. This Skinnytaste pasta recipe: 

2. These Cat and Jack baby socks that actually stay on the baby (which might be because of her cankles, but whatever).

The end.

Wednesday, April 14, 2021

What fresh hell?

 Apparently THIS is the baby who should be named Dorothy

Today, my friends, is the day that Ben and I are fully vaccinated. My campus app is permanently green, meaning I can have building access without a spit test. I can go to the grocery store with impunity. BUT WHEN? When can I go to the grocery store? This is the tricky part because when I have a free second, Ben is usually busy and vice versa. And Minnie? I mean, she can't even wear a mask. I felt OK about taking her to Whole Foods, but the regular store and Target both seem less awesome. Maybe this is just simple snobbery, especially since Whole Foods is teeny. In any case, I have brunch plans with a friend, pedicure ambitions, and acupuncture on the calendar. All of that feels like a dream.

We are keeping the kids home for the rest of the school year, and we feel OK about that. We have decided, though, to spend our interaction budget with them a little differently. Since they are not going to school, we feel OK about Little League. They have all 4 started hanging out (outside, with masks) with one or two other kids. We let Jack go to a birthday party that had 6 guests and was fully outside. The kids wore masks except when they were eating, and they ordered from a menu and had individual pizzas and salads. It was great. Harry wen to an outdoor party as well where they wore masks and played video games on a huge movie screen. Cooper and Dorothy both have neighborhood friends who are staying home from school that they can bike and play outside with, and even though her little bestie next door returned to in-person school, we are OK with Dorothy playing outside masked with her. We are trying to slowly open up our circle, keeping things outside, distanced, and masked, and it feels pretty great. I mean, Ben and I fully intend to hang out with our vaccinated friends with our naked slutty faces out, but we are staying cautious with the kids.

In other news, I am FASCINATED with discussions about the vax and menstruation. I feel freaking GREAT in terms of hormone-induced anxiety this cycle-- what if all these years, all I needed was some m-RNA? I am sort of being serious here because PMS and cycle-based mood issues are the reason I do acupuncture in the first place. I always feel amazing during pregnancy (which is why the pandemic wasn't as stressful fr me as it could have been, I think), but I was itching to get back to acupuncture as my postpartum period returned and with it came PMS. I even get mini-PMS during ovulation. But since my second dose, I feel none of those things. I wonder if I will have hormone-related milk supply issues this month. It's so wild, and just think, it hasn't been very long since people with uteruses even had to be included in clinical trials (since 1993, I think). 

Anyway, we are ready to inch out into the world, but we are still freaked out about the return to in-person school among vaccine hesitancy, no vaccines for older kids, and new COVID variants, idiots who don't want their kids to wear masks playing baseball, and kids on team sports hanging out like it's 2019. BABY STEPS.

Tuesday, April 13, 2021

8 months of Minnie Marigold

Eight months seems like a lot of months, honestly. How can it be? She's 2/3 to a year old, and a year old seems very un-baby (even though it is baby). I always knew more babies were on the way, so these first year milestones didn't feel so overwhelming. But with a last baby? Everything is bittersweet.

Luckily, this baby is heavy on the sweet.

Here are a million pictures.

 We are so lucky to have this excellent baby, and it's so hard to stay in our teeny COVID bubble when we want o share her delightfulness with the world.

Monday, April 12, 2021


 Ugh. I have lost a few pounds and now am at a plateau. I am hopeful that the pizza we had for dinner has just caused me to retain some of the 128 ounces of water I drank yesterday.

Something else I have notices is that I am eating FEWER fruits and veggies than I was say a month ago, which is weird. On one hand, I am eating less of everything. On the other hand, I am definitely choosing other things over fruits and veggies, especially for snacks.

I have 2 weight loss goals this week: weigh myself every day, and EAT BETTER SNACKS.  

I put my nightly chocolate chips in a snack-size Ziploc bag, and this has helped me stay to a strict 2 tablespoons, but I have also noticed that I eat chocolate chips while I am cleaning up the kitchen and listening to my audiobook as a sort of ritual, not because I am hungry. I don't plan to eliminate my chocolate fix, but  maybe I will move it slightly to a time when I am hungrier?

This was DELISH:

Even though I clearly have a drinking problem, this water bottle has been a game-changer-- I drink it twice a day: (Also what the hell-- who decided tucking in a sweatshirt was a good idea?)

Sunday, April 11, 2021

Minnie: keeping us on our toes.

This is Minnie waking up on Saturday morning after the WORST NIGHT'S SLEEP OF HER ENTIRE LIFE. 

She woke up at ELEVEN on Friday night and nursed and fussed ALL NIGHT LONG. It was the pits.

Speaking of terrible? The weather! 

But only sometimes. We have had a few days of popsicle walks after dinner, too.
After the worst sleep ever on Friday, Minnie slept completely through the night on Saturday. What can I say? She likes to keep us on our toes.

Saturday, April 10, 2021

Skirt-a-Thon, Week 1

 Remember Skirt-a-Thon? It's an academic FB group that comes together every April to wear skirts all 21 week days? We post selfies, root each other on, commiserate about the juggle. etc. Very feminist and life-affirming. I think this is my 8th year doing it, and some of my clothes have made an appearance very year. This year is especially difficult thanks to 15 extra pounds and the constraints of breastfeeding, plus my pandemic ennui that's a constant accessory.

We started last Thursday, and I skipped Friday for jeans at the zoo, so here are my first 6 scrounged together outfits:

This dress is literally older than Cooper

Ancient Tracy Reese dress that I wore all through pregnancy
Favorite jean skirt
Loft dress that was a nursing challenge
Another ancient favorite from Old Navy, with my nursing bralette, a real MVP

Friday, April 09, 2021

Solo Parenting! Oh the Horror!

 We have made the decision to let the kids do a little bit more outside the quarantine cave. We mask up and go places. They each have a friend or two they can hang out with (masked and outside) in the neighborhood. Both Harry and Jack have attended (outdoor) birthday parties. Harry got a summer job at the pool. All the kids will play tennis this summer. Cooper and Jack are going to dive. And, all 3 boys are playing Little League.

That's the one-- Little League-- that caused me to have to parent by myself. Ben is coaching Cooper's team, and he had to go to try-outs (Cooper did not), leaving me home over the dinner and bedtime hour with 5 kids. Holy smokes.

Minnie is 7 months old, and in non-end-times, this solo parenting thing would be commonplace by now. Ben would work at an office. I would be shuttling kids to all manner of practices, etc. BUT also, they would be going to school, and I would have the whole day to work (with Minnie, of course, but she's the fifth baby-- I am used to it). As it is now, I am dealing with stressful, fragmented days, and the thought of solo night duty was/is overwhelming.

Baseball goes through July, and it's going to be a real pain in the ass.

I started by actually cooking dinner, which helped. Also I cooked it at like 9 am and we just reheated. I made a pan of fatty cheesy chicken, bean, and rice enchiladas for the kids, and I made these for Ben and me:

I used 80-calorie La Tortilla tortillas, a cup of kidney beans, 1.5 cups of roasted sweet potatoes, a can of Rotel, 1/2 cup of shredded cheese, and a small can of Old El Paso enchilada sauce. 1/3 of the sauce goes on the bottom of the baking dish. 1/3 goes in the filling with the beans, Rotel, potatoes, and 1/4 cup cheese). Then, you top the rolled up enchiladas with the other 1/3 c sauce and the other 1/4 cup cheese. Each enchilada was 170 calories. I topped mine with jalapenos, salsa, and sour cream, and they were great and so easy.

We played Incoherent Family Edition at dinner, and it was so fun-- this is a great game-- you should play it.

Sweet baby Minnie played lids while I cleaned the kitchen and broke up screaming fights.

Then we played 4 square and ate fudgesicles. Whoever was out in 4 square had to sit by Minnie on a blanket away from the ball.

When we could not stand Dorothy screaming anymore about getting out, we took Beatrix for a walk:

Then Minnie watched me take a shower

I gave her and Dorothy a simul-bath, and by the time I needed to nurse Minnie to sleep, Ben was home.

Easy peasy.

Thursday, April 08, 2021

Vintage Family Circle Dinner

 If vintage is 2018, that is.

Seriously, I love this salad and am so sad I threw away my Family Circles because the mag is defunct, and none of the recipes are online. I found this on Pinterest and made it immediately. (200 calories a cup, and it makes 12 cups)

I am really only blogging it to have a copy accessible all the time. But also, you should make it because it is delicious.

Here's a fat baby on the grass: