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:

Wednesday, April 07, 2021

Not Crawling

 My blog here tells me that Harry didn't start crawling until he was a little over 8 months old-- and even then, it was more like creeping. So that makes me less worried about Minnie, who can only move backwards and rolls to get where she wants to go. And apparently, Jack was not quite there yet at a little over 8 months (although getting up on his haunches is more than she can do, and it sounds like he could sit up from lying down, which she also cannot do).  According to this, though, Cooper could slither on his stomach AND sit up on his own at Minnie's age, and Dorothy was practically walking by now.

So, bring it, Minnie!

It is really nice that we can put her down, and she stays basically right there.

What happens when I say I want to get a picture:
Not crawling:
Still not
We voted!
Another fab pose:

Monday, April 05, 2021

I have lost 5 pounds + new routine + mom FAIL

 And really? I feel fine. I was eating a ridiculous amount of food, apparently. 

Also, I do this thing when I am trying to lose weight where I don't drink water, which is the OPPOSITE of what I should be doing. So! I have my huge half gallon water jug, and I am drinking it TWICE a day every single day. This is so, so, so helpful. But also? A real chore.

Minnie and I changed up our morning walk/her morning Ergo nap, which is a SACRED part of our day: We used the BOB stroller! I was really nervous that she wasn't going to sleep because she spent the first part of the walk singing and clapping, but then:

Ben almost died buying that stroller, by the way, because we used to have one, and we got rid of it not very long before we got pregnant. It was in perfect shape because BOB strollers are amazing, but, alas. Even though it almost killed him, Ben finally capitulated to months of nagging. And I am so happy to have it-- I walk much faster pushing her than wearing her, that's for sure. Still, I can't say I am done with the Ergo walks-- having her sleeping on my chest is the sweetest thing in the entire world.

Speaking of my sweet baby sleeping! She woke up at 1:40 last night, and I turned off the monitor, and then instead of going to get her, I fell asleep with the monitor off. How awful is that? I woke up in a total panic at 3:14 and ran to her room. She was fast asleep and didn't wake up until 5, when she ate and then slept until 8. I hope she was only awake for a few minutes at 1, and I feel like a total asshole about it.

Sunday, April 04, 2021


 Such an unexpectedly gorgeous day. It has been so cold and gloomy that beautiful weather is shocking, I swear.

Minnie liked her basket a lot
Especially the tag on her new Minnie Mouse dress
The boys found a bunch of eggs before Dorothy even got to the back yard. But! The eggs were filled with money, and when they counted their loot inside, Dorothy got more money than anyone else. Ha!
She played on the floor for over an hour and was perfectly pleasant, even though she woke up an hour earlier than normal.
The most gorgeous day of the year.
The bunny brought Dorothy some quick dry non-toxic nail polish, and we put it to good use.

Saturday, April 03, 2021

Naps (or lack thereof)

 Minnie's naps are kind of in the toilet.

 She used to take a long morning nap (90-120 minutes), an OK afternoon nap, and then a short pre-dinner (or even during dinner nap). Now, though, she takes a totally crappy morning nap (35-50 minutes max) and then a kind of crappy afternoon nap too (like and hour). Occasionally, if she wakes up before the hour mark and we give her a minute to see if she's really awake, she goes back to sleep and stays asleep for a couple more hours. I wish this happened every day-- the 2+ hour nap-- but it just doesn't. Today, she slept for 35 minutes on a walk this morning and for just under an hour this afternoon. AND THAT IS ALL.

Luckily, when she's awake, she is a delightful tiny human.

Last night after dinner, she fell asleep mid-play, so I really think she could use a little more day sleep.

Friday, April 02, 2021

Operation Normalize Going Places

6:54 am:

 I told Dorothy and Cooper we could go to our favorite waffle place and eat outside, and I am praying that they don't wake up in the mood for waffles because it is TWENTY-FIVE DEGREES OUTSIDE. Also, I have lost FOUR POUNDS and am not in the place to eat waffles for breakfast.

About Dorothy and Cooper: we noticed that they need to go inside places because they are starting to fear people. So, we have gone inside a bakery to pick up our cookie order and inside an ice cream place to celebrate Ben's and my vaccine, and I even took Dorothy and Minnie into Whole Foods yesterday. Whole Foods was glorious, BTW. Besides baby yogurt, the reason I went to there, I spent $200 on complete bullshit and it was very nostalgic. (*Not actually bullshit-- I got all the stuff for Easter dinner: ham, turkey breast, broccoli, asparagus, sparkling rose, which is probably for Easter morning if we are being honest, and strawberry shortcake).

1:54 pm

** It has been 7 hours since I started this post because I had to GO EAT WAFFLES**

We also took the kids to the zoo, and right now? Minnie is waking up from one of her patented TWENTY EFFING MINUTE NAPS. WHYYY?

In other baby news, she ate yogurt and likes it a lot.

Good thing she's so cute:

Operation normalize going places is in full effect:

So far all of the places are junk-food related. But! Dorothy went with Ben to the bike store today, and Whole Foods was not ALL junk (we did get chocolate croissants because why not). Plus the zoo, which I am glad we visited since our county rescinded its outdoor mask order today. On the one hand YAY because our numbers are going way down, but also WUT because the reason our numbers are going down is MASKS. Now I am anxious about Little League and will NOT go back to the crowded zoo. Even though it is operating at 50% capacity, it was still wall-to-wall people, which we were largely fine with because they were wearing masks. Gah.

I cannot with her little face:

Thursday, April 01, 2021

March: What I Read

 I read so much this month! And by read I mean LISTENED TO AUDIO BOOKS. Seriously, if your library uses the Libby app, GET IT.

16. (Audio) Present Over Perfect by Shauna Niequist: This one did not do it for me.

15. (Audio) The Tourist Attraction by Sarah Morgenthaler: Ugh. So predictable but also took forever.

14. This Will Be Funny Someday by Katie Henry: Bascially a YA Mrs. Maisel, but I loved it. *2021

13. A Rule Against Murder by Louise Penny: Meh on this Gamache.

12. (Audio) If It Bleeds by Stephen King: These are 4 novellas, and I liked them a lot.

11. The Cruelest Month by Louise Penny: I appreciated the Easter tie-in, but this Gamache was a slow one for me.

10. (Audio) The Perfect Guests by Emma Rous: SO CREEPY! *2021

9. (Audio) The Night Sister by Jennifer McMahon: So entertaining!! 

8. (Audio) Oona Out of Order by Margarita Montimore: This is a time traveling treat!

7. (Audio) The Children by Ann Leary: A great plot and excellent characters.

6. (Audio) Braiding Sweetgrass by Robin Wall Kimmer: I loved this one. If you have not read it, it's a must-read. Such a blend of science and spirituality, memoir and philosophy.

5. A Fatal Grace by Louise Penny: This is my favorite Gamache book yet.

4. (Audio) The Good House by Ann Leary: YES! Listen to this one because Mary Beth Hurt reads it, and she is divine. This book is hilarious but also a really detailed and moving portrait of alcoholism.

3. People Like Her by Ellery Lloyd: I loved this one-- so suspenseful and really disturbing at the end but also wickedly funny. *2021

2. Homegoing by Yaa Gyasi: THIS BOOK. It might be better than Transcendent Kingdom, my favorite book of last year.

1. The Push by Ashley Audrain: THIS BOOK IS SO CREEPY AND GREAT. I could not put it down. *2021

Notice that I only read 4 books form this year? Yeah, me, too. I usually only read current books, but my holds were slow to come in, and I had to make do. I won't pick a non-2021 book as book of the year, obvs.

Current books 4/16

Audiobooks 9/16

Books so far this year: 44/121