Thursday, December 31, 2020

Books I Read (Dec)

Total Books Read for December: 2

Bring my 2020 total to a measly 20. 
5 of those 20 were read in January alone, 
meaning I read 15 books in 11 months. 

BUT I also had a baby 
and was navigating a global pandemic, 
so I'm certainly cutting myself some slack. 

 

Wild Game 
By Adrienne Brodeur

This is a beautifully written book, like poetry. 
But the characters greatly annoyed me
and I had a hard time going back to read it 
because I felt so annoyed at the characters. 

About halfway through, however, 
my annoyance faded 
and instead I felt consumed by the story. 
The tumultuous, trainwreck story. 
And the end, the end was truly beautiful. 



Lots of Candles, Plenty of Cake 
By Anna Quindlen

This book is like a warm hug. 
A beautiful, smart book 
that I thoroughly enjoyed reading 
and looked forward to picking up at the end of a long day. 

It's like a big fuzzy chair 
that envelops you when you are exhausted 
from being on your feet all day. 

How many cozy descriptors can I come up with? 




Monday, December 21, 2020

20 Questions

 Natasha did another survey so of course I must copy. 
And then Allena did it too
Also using this to sprinkle in more photoshoot photos!


1. Introvert or Extrovert? 

I once tested at 98% extrovert. 
I thrive off of spending time with people 
and I'm totally energized by big parties.
 (Versus Introvert Adam, who is exhausted by people and parties.)  
All that said, I really do enjoy my alone time 
and have not minded being trapped in the house with COVID. 
In fact, I've questioned if I'm more of an introvert than I thought? 



2. Favorite Movie? 

Ben Hur, circa 1959 with Charlton Heston. 
I have had a crush on young Charlton Heston my whole life. 
(For a hilarious recap of my crush history, see this post here.) 



3. Arrive early or late?  

I MUST BE EARLY or right on time. 
I am totally a basket case if I'm late. 


4. Last book you read? 

Wild Game 




5. Favorite Holiday? 

Christmas 100%. 
I love Christmas. 
I love the music, the decorations, 
the presents, the food... 
everything. 




6. Pet Peeve:

I have so so so many pet peeves
I am easily annoyed. 

Here's a smattering of some recent ones... 
People who treat pets like children, 
not clearing the microwave after done cooking, 
people who complain about problems 
but then make no effort to fix them, 
homeowners not salting/shoveling sidewalks, 
people who are late, 
and many many more. 



7. Foods you refuse to eat:

Eggs. 
Avocado.  
Mint (except in toothpaste). 


8. Favorite Fast Food Chain: 

Arby's. 
Arby's makes me so damn sick. 
But I love those roast beef sandwiches and curly fries. 
I eat it every 5 years or so because I get so sick from it. 


When Aaron was 3,
he asked for burgers for dinner. 
I replied "Sorry, we don't have any meat in the house." 
Aaron: "Why don't we go to Arby's?" 
Me: "Uh... what?" 
(Reminder: we had not been to Arby's in his lifetime
Aaron: "I saw it on a football commercial. They have the meats!" 


9. How do you keep fit? 

I run. 
I have been a runner for over a decade. 
The farthest I've run at one time is 16 miles, 
when I was training for the Philadelphia Marathon 
(before my knee gave out). 

I don't always love running. 
Sometimes I set out for a run 
and I'm not into it either physically or mentally; 
my legs feel like concrete and it's just miserable. 

Most times my runs are just "decent," 
not good or bad. 

And sometimes, I find that elusive runner's high, 
where I barely notice my legs carrying me, 
and I feel like I'm flying. 
I have, after checking that no one is watching
stretched out my arms like a bird, 
soaring on the runner's high. 
At a peak runner's high is when every runner 
thinks he/she can sign up for a big race,  
like 10-milers or marathons, 
totally unaware that the runner's high
never actually hits during the race. 

I also do yoga, 
but that's to offset the running. 
Running is brutal on any body 
and my body needs deep stretching to recover. 


10. Morning person or night person? 

I am a morning person. 
I love getting up early and getting stuff accomplished. 
A productive morning is deeply satisfying to me. 

I enjoy nighttime, but nighttime is for fun. 
Nighttime is for drinking and socialization 
or snuggling up and reading. 


11. Favorite drink? 

Alcoholic drink: Mimosa. 
Nonalcoholic hot drink: Hot chocolate. 
Nonalcoholic cold drink: Kombucha.


12. Irrational fear? 

Flying.  
It is well documented that I am batshit terrified of flying. 
I still fly, 
but with lorazepam and wine. 


13. Go-to snack? 

This changes monthly. 
I am the type of person to eat the same thing for weeks 
then never eat it again for years
Right now my go-to healthy snack is a basic apple. 
My go-to unhealthy snack is chocolate covered pretzels. 


14. Strongest Sense?  

Smell. 
I can smell things no one else smells. 
I can run by a house and know that the inhabitants smoke pot. 
I can smell salmon for days after it is cooked. 

My eyesight is also pretty good, too. 
I used to have 20/15 vision, 
but a decade of staring at screens has reduced my eyesight to 20/20. 

Fun fact, my worst sense is hearing. 
I probably should have a hearing aid. 
I am notorious for asking for people to repeat things, 
often three or four times. 
It drives Adam NUTS. 


15. Fictional Place You'd Like to Visit? 

Diagon Alley first, 
St Mungo's second, 
and Hogwarts third. 



16. Kindle or Actual Book? 

Forever books. 
I love the feel of a book. 
I can describe to you the thickness 
and the texture 
of my favorite books. 


17. Last Movie you Went to see in Theaters? 

I did a lot of digging to figure this out. 
Originally I thought it was The Last Jedi (Dec 2017) 
then knew I took Aaron to Smallfoot (Fall 2018) 
then realized I did see the latest Star Wars movie, 
The Rise of Skywalker, and that was Dec 2019. 
Obviously haven't gone to theaters in 2020. 



18. Favorite season? 

Spring. 
I LOVE when the earth wakes up after a cold winter. 
I love the flowers bursting out of the ground. 
I love watching the green leaves spread over the trees. 
I love the freedom of shedding jackets and sweatshirts. 
I love that the kids can get wet from streams and water fountains, 
and not worry if they'll freeze to death. 




19. Beach or mountain? 

Eh, I'm indifferent. 
They each have their pros and cons. 
I love the cool mountain air 
and all the hiking trails. 
I also love jumping ocean waves 
and eating ice cream on the boardwalk. 


20. Favorite cereal? 

Cheerios. 
Plain old General Mills cheerios. 
Cheerios is a comfort food to me. 
When I'm sick, I eat cheerios. 
Because it's so bland, 
it can also tolerate different milks. 
I've been testing out dairy alternatives (most are crap)
and now use Elmhurst "milked cashews" in my smoothies. 
Cheerios, IMO, is the only cereal that works with nut milk.



Thursday, December 3, 2020

Life Lately

I will admit: 
I decided to write this blog post 
because my sister did a photoshoot for us 
and I wanted an excuse to post some photos. 
If you are in the capital region of NY 
and looking for a photographer, 
her website is here

A collection of random things in our life lately... 


1) Adam is once again working full-time from home.  

He started back in the office 2 days a week in the fall 
then his company really pushed to get everyone in full time, 
so he moved to 4 days a week in November. 
Over Thanksgiving, PA governor announced 
"mandatory work from home unless impossible." 
So he's back home!

There are some annoying things about Adam working from home:
I have to be more conscious of Carson's crying 
(the office/nursery share a very thin wall). 
I lose my serene office space 
and am relegated to the dining room table. 

But the pros outweigh the cons. 
When he's having a slow day, 
he can come downstairs and hang out with us. 
We eat dinner earlier at night, because he's not commuting home. 
And, best for my sanity, I'm NOT CHAINED to the house; 
I can leave Aaron home doing virtual school 
while I take Carson & Oliver out! 

Adam and Aaron twinning for the photoshoot


2) Two-Week School Break/Virtual

Both Aaron and Oliver's schools were closed 
for in-person learning
 for 2 weeks around Thanksgiving. 
For Oliver, this was just a 2-week break 
and for Aaron, this was 2-week virtual. 

I did not think Aaron would be returning, 
and am SHOCKED to report that they are both 
going back on December 7th. 
Aaron will continue to be in 2-day hybrid.
Oliver's Nature Preschool will stay open unless there is a mandate 
from either governor or the city of Philadelphia. 



3) Carson is 10 months old. 

He is turning into such a chill baby. 
After a colic-y entrance into the world, 
Carson has finally found his spot as third child. 
His sleep schedule is fairly predicable, 
he eats almost anything, 
he's extremely portable out-and-about, 
and any fussiness can be solved 
by food, bath, or being held in the carrier. 



Equally important as the above...

4) My new luxury obsession.
 
I bought these towels on Black Friday 
and they may be my favorite thing I've ever bought. 

I feel like I'm in a spa. 
They are plush but not too thick, 
absorbent but still soft. 

I never thought I'd fall for luxury linens 
but I've fallen hard. 


5) Are you a monster like me?

Do you know someone who only eats the cookie dough 
out of the cookie dough ice cream container? 
Leaving little craters like swiss cheese?  

I am that monster. 
Adam refuses to buy cookie dough ice cream 
because he knows how horrible of a person I am. 

If you, too, are that monster, 
let me introduce you to Ben & Jerry's Cookie Dough Bites
Available in the frozen section, 
they taste JUST LIKE the ice cream version. 
I'm obsessed 
and I want you to be obsessed too.