Friday, June 30, 2023

5 on a Friday: I LOVE Going to WORK Edition

Ben has been really busy this summer (it’s actually a pretty busy season for him in terms of budget, planning, getting set for the next enrollment season, etc), and before this week, I have been teaching online and have been completely able to work from home, so I haven’t been to my office to do work since early MAY.  I went this week on the days I teach, and it was SO SO SO SO SO GREAT. I almost wish I could do it every day. So, IHO loving working from campus, here’s a list of 5 things I love most about it.

 1. I LOVE coming HOME from work and tidying a few things up and seeing all my people and reconnecting with my space and feeling relieved that I am home but also happy that I checked some things off my to-do list and maybe even had a reason to wear a fun dress.

2. I LOVE taking a walk from my garage to a coffee shop or from my office to the lake. While I adore morning walks around my neighborhood, breaking up my usual route with a downtown stroll is always a midday delight. And! Look at the extra delight that awaits me SOON (this is STEPS AWAY FROM MY BUILDING YOU GUYS).

3. I LOVE packing a lunch to eat at my desk while I read a book. I especially like this when I have actually cooked dinner and can just throw leftovers into a Tupperware while I am cleaning the kitchen.

4. I LOVE listening to an audiobook on my drive, my walk, and when I am doing mundane, half-brain admin tasks. Unless Ben is home and actively paying attention to Minnie or I am exercising, I don’t feel like I can zone out with an audiobook in my real life. Here’s my fave listen this month:

5. I love that I only do these things some days, not all days, but I really really really love the some days, especially in the summer. Hashtag full house.

Wednesday, June 28, 2023

Little League

 I am always complaining that Coop is on three baseball teams at once, but when push comes to shove, I love baseball. I *think* I even prefer when Ben is the coach (he coaches 2/3 teams) because he is a Very Uptight spectator, so he might as well be getting a neck sunburn over on the third base line doing all his weird signals, right?

Cooper’s regular season Little League team has not played great. Going into the league playoffs, they were the 7th seed and had won only 5 games out of 17. We did not have high hopes for the first play off game, so Minnie and I (along with my aunt) set up shop at the playground where we could sort of watch Coop’s game and Dorothy’s softball game that was happening at the same time. Honestly, the only reason I even went to the game in 90-degree weather was because it was going to be his last one, and I wanted to support him and his coach dad. Sometimes when the kids have simul-games, Ben watches Dorothy’s with like half an eye while he coaches because I am the worst sportsball mom.

Anywho, Dorothy’s team beat “the undefeatable team” (goodness I love it when she reminds me she is still a little kid and says things like that), and she scored the winning 9th run.

Then, unbelievably, Coop’s team won their playoff game!

Minnie got “HUPER DIRTY” and found tons of rocks and sticks to put in her treasure chest

On Sunday, Coop’s team faced the #2 seed in quarterfinals. AND THEY WON 20-13. It was sensational 12U baseball.

Also, now that I am looking at these pics, maybe Minnie’s dress is a lucky charm?

Probably because she didn't wear it on Monday, and the Tree LOST in semifinals. 

It was fun to watch them playing on the penultimate night of the summer league-- people on eliminated teams were there and also people on the other team that had already gotten through to the championship game. Cooper played SO WELL. He pitched 2 very efficient no-score innings (20 pitches total!), scored, made bananas plays as catchers (that kid can throw down!). But the other team was great and hit SO WELL.  The Trees lost 7-13 and played the whole 6 innings-- very exciting.

During the game, Harry threw himself a birthday party at a golf place. I gave him my credit card and some grocery store mini cupcakes and sent him on his way. Around 8:30, very engrossed in the game because our team made a mini comeback from 3 to 7, I thought I'd check my phone and see if he was still golfing. I had a bunch of texts telling me that he was going to a lake beach with his friends and one of his friends was driving. I had a notification that he left the house.


I called him back. No answer. I called him back many many many more times. NO ANSWER.

I was so worried! Like, the rational part of my brain knew he was probably at the lake swimming and had just called on the way there to make sure I knew where he was so I didn't freak out. BUT TWELVE MISSED CLASS AFTER HE VERY CLEARLY TEXTED ME HIS PLANS? 

TL;DR: He was fine. 

I ended up texting the other moms, which he thinks is pretty much unforgivable because it is SO DORKY, and pulling Ben from the end-of-game post mortem to go to the lake (he got a block away from the park when Harry finally called us back, and he and Coop returned to their post-game celebration). Harry was like OMG I called you a bunch so you would not freak out, and I was like OMG I only freaked out because you called so many times AFTER YOU TEXTED AND LEFT THE HOUSE.  He was like ugh now you are going to be mad at me, and I was like no! I'm not mad because I am so glad you aren't dead. And then Minnie piped up with MY BRUDDER HARRY IS ALIBE? HE IS NOT DEAD. So that was awesome. (She is always listening).

We came up with a better comms plan for next time.


Now Coop just has his Little League tournament team and his travel ball team, and I know it is not much, but being down a whole team feels good, even though we will still be at the fields for softball, and Ben and Coop (and also Harry and Jack and Dorothy and Minnie) love Little League so much it is basically always a check in the joyful experience column.

Tuesday, June 27, 2023

First day of class; photo dump

On my way to my first day of my summer class, this looooong,  sloooow train poured past me for ten minutes. I kept taking pictures and texting them to Ben, who responded with more and more laugh emojis.


I turned my car around and hoped that the train had already trickled through an intersection by Union South and I could get through AND IT HAD, and I DID. But even after I got to my garage and parked, I could see it, still stopped. WHAT A CLUSTER.

As soon as I got to my office, I set a timer so I could do a quick work day brain dump and reacquaint  myself with my syllabus—the only problem with preparing early is that you need a little bit to remember what you did, you know? The first thing I noticed was a really stupid typo. I printed copies last week, though, and thanks to the slowest, longest train, I didn’t have time to make more. But I did have time to correct the error with purple pen. 25 times. Cool.

I was worried that the traffic snafu and the typo were bad omens, but my first day was a life affirming delight, and I am already sad that I only have 10 more class meetings with these awesome students.

How about a photo dump, so I can catch up? (I have been taking tons of pics but not sharing them very often because I have an online class at my school, an adjunct online class, an in-person class, and 5 kids taking my time and mental space, you know?)

Here is a picture of Ben recalling the plot of a Wonder Pets episode he has not seen in at least 8 years while I wondered what information has leaked out of his brain so he could remember that the baby chimp is in space.

I finally found time to take Minnie swimming when it was actually hot and I wanted to be in the water— fun for both of us.

She brought a few friends along

Dorothy joined us, too, and we had a really lovely afternoon. If it is going to 90 degrees, we might as well be in the water,

Ben even came to the pool MORE THAN ONCE this weekend. WHAT?

Dorothy and Cooper had another swim meet. Coop got ribbons in back and IM. Dorothy got a ribbon in fly, and their relays got ribbons, too. I love that for them. Ben got to try out his new tent and chair from Father’s Day, and he’d really like to develop an app so he could “bet on kids like they’re horses.” Erm.

I took some kids to my office to make the aforementioned copies, and I forgot how fun they always think it is— will do this more over the summer.
A baby bunny hopped into our garage and couldn’t get out, so Harry decided to lure it with carrots (WHAT), a plan that seemed plausible to Minnie (BUNNIES WUB CARROTS. THAT’S PERFECK) but made the rest of us give him the side eye. But I am a horrible person who thought I could scare it out by rattling the garbage cans it was hiding behind only my hands were full, so I kicked the can a little, and I broke a toenail and ruined a fairly new pedicure which serves me right. ONLY! I need to let the nail grow before I get another pedicure to fix it so I just have to walk around with gross toes, and really that’s too big of a consequence. THE BUNNY WAS FINE. While that nonsense was happening, I fed the girls lunch in muffin tins on the sidewalk because MOTY.

By way of closing (LOL— how to even try to gather all of these threads?) a few more pics of Minnie at the pool, which is quickly becoming my very favorite Minnie

Monday, June 26, 2023


Dorothy has been dying for this particular Starbucks cup— anyone else have a kid who is obsessed?Apparently she sees lots of them (sparkly Starbs straw cups) at the dance studio?  She had another excellent week of not screaming at us (LOLOLOL), so she snagged one at long last.
Coop got tired of waiting for me to make puppy chow (NEVER GOING TO HAPPEN BECAUSE I CANNOT NOT EAT IT LIKE A RAVENOUS WOLF, INTUITIVE EATING BE DARNED), so he just made it himself.
Cooper and Minnie were SO CUTE at the pool on Saturday night

Despite having a bunch of housework to do, we went to family float day on Sunday morning. Minnie was a YUGE fan.

The rest of us were a liiiiiiiittle cold. Ben always has a parka in his car from hockey, though, so he was OK. LOL LOL LOL.

My mom and my aunt came to visit, and we had a blast. Plus they got to see a summer league dive meet that jack won, shattering his record by 40 points— so awesome.

It was a lovely weekend. Can’t wait for this week to punch us in the face.