Neglected Blog

UGH.  I’ve been putting off my Comeback Post because how do you write a blog post when you haven’t written a blog post in weeks…then it’s months…then all you can think about is, do I need to write about what I’ve been doing the past three months? Or is anyone going to read this any more? Or what cute picture of my children will make this all better?

Winter is a bit of a weird time for me.  Since I’m busy most of the rest of the year, I try to take the opportunity to hibernate a bit, minimize plans (which are more than likely to be cancelled by snow anyway), get some rest, be at the house, drink wine in my pajamas, etc. I’m not sure if it’s the children, or just an uptick in my rocking social life, but the past few years have not seemed as hibernate-y as prior years, and I feel like I’ve been running around a lot more than I’d like.

And yet when I think about what I’ve actually done, I’m not sure I could even make an interesting list.

  • There was Christmas and New Year’s and everyone in my family has January birthdays so those things all happened
  • My team won at bar trivia
  • I’ve played a few hockey games
  • Caring for children while Ben works 6 or 7 (yes SIX or SEVEN) days a week for the USPS
  • Putting on another sweater because it’s cold
  • We are having a weight loss challenge at work, and I’ve lost some extremely negligible amount of weight because I refuse to cut out chocolate or wine
  • Zoe has almost all her teeth now.  They seem to come in as slow as possible, one tooth at a time.  I believe she’s been teething her whole life
  • Elena can tie her own shoes and I don’t know who taught her but it wasn’t me

But springtime is coming up.  Hopefully I’ll be able to start running outside again, since I miss it.  And maybe then I can eat chocolate and wine without guilt.  And I can plan some trips – I love planning trips.

I’m hoping to post more frequently now.  I have a few ideas.

Here are the pictures of my children that should make it all OK.

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Nice things that happened this weekend

I had a pretty good weekend.  It was obviously nice to have my damn license back so I could go about my business.  Highlights of the weekend included:

(1) I decided to do this 30 day ab challenge.  I’m currently on day 4, which you can see is a rest day.  I’m purposefully not looking too far ahead because I glanced at it and saw something about 100+ sit-ups toward the end?  I can totally think about that later.  Anyway, the first three days have been fine!

Ab Challenge

Ab Challenge

(2) Elena and I went to Wheeling to meet baby Audrey.  (Who I keep wanting to call Aubrey because of my friend Aubrey, so, Stacey I’m sorry if that happens, but Aubrey is awesome, so it’s a good confusion.)  Baby Audrey is cute and small and Elena really loved her and is ready to babysit.

Audrey

Audrey

(3) Ben and I went to a Penguins game last week, and Elena expressed an interest in going to a hockey game.  Based on our experiences taking Elena to our own hockey games, we anticipated that she would not enjoy the entire game, and we don’t exactly have $100+/ticket to blow on an experience for our four year old that she will almost definitely just kind of be OK with.  So I took the opportunity to take her to a Wheeling Nailers game.  We got seats three rows back from the ice (our view of the one net was obscured by the players, but we were right on top of the game generally), and one child + one adult was $27.  Seriously, $27.  There were approximately 7 fights in the first period.  I specify “in the first period” because we were right, Elena was totally ready to go after one period.  Anyway, it was fun.  I was glad to get to focus on Elena a little bit extra this weekend.  Zoe’s usually all up in my business and I don’t necessarily get to hang out with E Dubs as much as I’d like.

Nailers

Nailers

(4) She paid me back by doing my nails.  So that’s $20 saved.

Mani/Pedi

Mani/Pedi

Pre-K Last Day

Today is Elena’s last day of Pre-K. She starts kindergarten after we get back from vacation!

Those of you who are good at math might remember that Elena will not be 5 until January. She’s going into kindergarten at Kindercare, and she will more than likely go through it again at public school next year. We weren’t initially anticipating that she would be going to kindergarten this year, but all of her little friends are going (at least the ones who will still be at Kindercare) and the teachers say she’s ready.

I think she’s excited but nervous. I vividly remember crying my eyes out on my first day of kindergarten, and also not being sure where my classroom was, and then later being nervous I was on the wrong bus home. I don’t anticipate any of those things will happen for Elena (and in fact the last two are basically impossible since we know where the classroom is and she won’t be taking the bus home; how cruel everything was in the early 80s).

Personally I feel like maybe I should be sadder about this? The whole “my little girl is growing up” thing? She and I have a little schtick going on now where she asks for help putting on her shoes, then tells me she can do it herself, and I pretend to cry because MY LITTLE GIRL IS GROWING UP. But honestly? Every time she learns something new, I’m happy about it, even if it means leaving some things behind.

Maybe this will change when she is, like, 13, and EVERYTHING IS THE WORST.

Busy July Weekend

For most of my adult life, July has been the month of busyness and oftentimes change. Most recently, there’s been plenty to do all year round, but even still the warm weather seems to bring out the highest volume of activities. This weekend I had the opportunity to play in a hockey tournament and I couldn’t even do it because there were so many other things to do.

Saturday morning was lovely, and I took Elena and Zoe to North Park, where Elena rode her bike and Zoe rode in the stroller while I pushed her. It was the first time we’d attempted something like this, and it worked out really well, except that Elena’s tires need air and I didn’t bring the pump. Also, I mean, she got tired after like 10 minutes, but that was OK.

In the afternoon I had my 20-year high school reunion. Eek!

1994

1994

Several months ago, in a fit of volunteerism, I had said I would be on the planning committee. Those of you who have followed along with my sleep-deprived 2014 perhaps are aware that this was a terrible idea. I figured out that it was a terrible idea about two months ago. Anyway, I was not on the committee, but I know how much work they did, and it turned out really well! I thought we had a really nice turnout for a 20 year reunion in our generation (I’m guessing, but I would say 30-40%).

It was at a local bar.

local bar

local bar

There was a signature cocktail, in school colors of course.

signature cocktail

signature cocktail

And there was a photo booth.

photo booth fun

photo booth fun

more photo booth fun

more photo booth fun

Due to bad planning I had to leave early, so I missed the group photo as well as “the period where everyone pulled out their phones and took random pictures” so I’m not in too many pictures, but that’s OK. I had a nice time!

Saturday evening I headed BACK to North Park with Ben and we had a nice date evening. So it was a very north-part-of-Pittsburgh sort of day.

Sunday morning we had a hockey game. Here is a team photo from our spring iteration of Phil Collins Mixtape. The summer iteration is different due to vacations and general ridiculousness. (Captaining a team is often more work than my actual job.)

Phil Collins Mixtape (spring edition)

Phil Collins Mixtape (spring edition)

After the game I had some down time which I achieved by taking the long way home so I could just sit in the car and listen to the radio while driving, which is the most relaxing part of my weekends generally, and the only way I can be sure Zoe will nap.

Sunday afternoon, Stacey was in town, so we got together at the Cafe at the Frick for TEA SERVICE. If you have any interest in attending a proper tea, you should run, not walk, to the Cafe. It’s gorgeous and the tea is divine and the SCONES MY GOD.

fancy ladies

fancy ladies

tea

tea

YUM

YUM

After this series of adventures, we came home and pretty much just stared at the wall til bedtime.

Friday Query: could I pull off this look?

Last Saturday at Elena’s ballet class there was a lady who brought one of the little girls to class in a 1920s style fashion turban and sunglasses. I say “lady” because in the turban and sunglasses she could have been the mother, grandmother, maiden aunt – it was impossible to tell. So mysterious!

Could I pull off this look? I love the idea of walking around cultivating an air of mystery. Unfortunately I feel like “an air of mystery” is the opposite of what I generally cultivate. Also I would probably need a cigarette holder and silk pajamas, right?

July 4 Weekend: All The Things

From Thursday July 3 to Monday July 7 (I took a vacation day) I managed to cram in just about every fun summer thing there is to do.

July 3 was the beginning of Anthrocon, which brings the most spectacular people-watching to Pittsburgh in the form of furries. I organized a happy hour at Ten Penny, which is a prime viewing area. After a couple of Moscow mules everything is hilarious.

Anthrocon

Anthrocon

Next year’s Anthrocon is July 9-12, so people who were out of town for the holiday weekend will be able to catch up.

July 4 was gorgeous weather and I got to go for a run. Ben went to help Krista and Paul move, and I got some pictures of the girls in their patriotic outfits. Later in the day Elena told me that some people must not know it was America’s birthday because they were just wearing normal clothes.

These girls know it's America's birthday

These girls know it’s America’s birthday

We went downtown for lunch and to the Regatta (ya gotta Regatta). It was nice walking around and looking at the people. Ben and Elena watched a boat race while I walked in circles trying to get Zoe to fall asleep. Later, Elena skinned her knee and dramatically limped the entire way back to the car.

The Point

The Point

We went to my parents’ for dinner and backyard fireworks, which we had to light before it was actually dark because we were pretty tired.

Backyard Fireworks

Backyard Fireworks

On July 5 we had Elena’s little ballet class (which is going very well!) and then we went to visit my friends Kristin and Mike and their twin babies. Zoe enjoyed trying to crawl over their faces. Next was the grocery store/play area for Elena, followed by a bachelorette party for me. (I should note here that I only went to the pre-game portion of the bachelorette party. I was uninvolved in the “DD limo to Buckheads” portion of the bachelorette party. Lest you think I am superwoman.)

Sunday morning July 6 was The Sweet Sprint, which is a 3K (1.8 mile) point-to-point race with cupcakes at the end. Elizabeth strongarmed me into going (not a hard sell). It was a really nice race, other than a slight delay at the start. There were maybe 60 people in attendance (so plenty of treats to go around) and running a 3K kind of makes you feel like a superhero when most races are 5K. My time was 16:33!

Sweet Sprint

Sweet Sprint

Elena and Zoe went to Grandma Patty’s for some fun pool time, and I went to Target and Sephora for some fun shopping-without-kids time.

Both kids took a serious nap upon their return, which allowed me to do some work and reading on the back deck. After dinner, Elena and I went to the township fireworks (by which I mean we went to sit in the Redneck Lobster parking lot to see partially obscured fireworks) with Elizabeth & family. This was her first time (since she was 6 months old) staying awake for fireworks.

Waiting for the fireworks

Waiting for the fireworks

July 7 I took a vacation day because Zoe’s sitter was on vacation (the nerve!). I took her out for a nice walk/jog in the jogging stroller, then we went over to Elizabeth’s new house. It’s a NEW new house, just built, and all I wanted to do was roll around on the clean empty floors. Then we went to lunch. After this I brought Zoe home for a brief rest, then we headed back out with Elena & family to the St. Sebastian festival, where we met up with Mara & Mollie and I ran into Kathy!

picture courtesy of Mara

picture courtesy of Mara

So this is why I haven’t ironed my laundry yet. There will be time for this in February.