Lately

SequoiaMaking: Hopefully nothing! Maybe my husband will cook.
Drinking: Water. I’m fancy like that.
Reading: I just finished Sarah J. Maas’ A Court of Thorn and Roses trilogy and really enjoyed it, which surprised me.
Organizing: This year’s travel plans. Still. Though airfare has been purchased. I may have mentioned that I over plan when it comes to these things.
Coveting: Despite the baby being over five months old, I’m still not entirely back to where I’d like to be (from both a health and size standpoint). So I’m currently coveting a new wardrobe, but realistically I’d just like to fit into what I own.
Listening: The Dead South // I’ll Be in Good Company
Watching: The White Princess, though I’m worried it’s going to ruin the history for me.
Smelling: Books. I’m on a break at work. In my next working life, I’m choosing a job that requires few weekends.
Wishing: For my hair to grow! I got a really unfortunate haircut the other day, now to wait for it to regrow.
Loving: Starting and hopefully finishing productive projects, especially in the house and yard.
Adoring: Being a mother. I genuinely love it, even when they drive me crazy. I’m also forever thankful to have fellow night owl children who do not get up early.
Accomplishing: As we approach the end of another school year, I will enjoy the fact that my children have yet to be late. It’s the little things.
Needing: Home repair. A hail storm (with near baseball sized hail), went through my neighborhood and seriously damaged my house and car.
Feeling: Exhausted!
Wanting: These shoes. Please and thank you (maybe a tad out of my normal price range).
Wondering: How much longer Sean Spicer can last. I mean, honestly…
Thinking: How costly being a homeowner is. Still. This thought has been on repeat for the last several months.
Celebrating: Mother’s Day. Happy Mother’s Day to everyone who celebrates it, and a hug for everyone who struggles with this day.

Amazing image found here.

Sweet Baby June

ivy-juneAlthough I mentioned it in passing on my last post, I will formally interrupt this silence to tell you that my husband, two sons, and I welcomed a baby girl into our family on November 15. Her name is Ivy June (we call her both Ivy and June – one month in and we are undecided whether she’s an Ivy or a June) and she is very sweet and mellow. It was, generally speaking, an uneventful labor and delivery. The only complications were expected and brilliantly handled by the hospital staff (I was very grateful). Until I get into some sort of routine, I’m sure I will pop in and out of this space. I do miss talking about books with other bookish adults, but I love newborns as well. Until then, I will go about my day as if I’m not ruled by three tiny dictators of my own making. I am in control. Completely.

Happy reading and happy holidays to all.

Bookish (and not so Bookish) Thoughts

acadia01. I’m still pregnant. I’ll spare you the whining, but know that it’s there. And given how small this little peanut is predicted to be, going overdue may be a good thing. Still, there is something about the due date passing by that’s deflating.

02. Like short stories? Patrick Somerville’s The Universe in Miniature in Miniature is a great collection and it’s available through Featherproof Books at 20% off – and 100% of all sales will go directly to Planned Parenthood, Black Lives Matter, Equality Illinois, and the National Network for Immigrant and Refugee Rights until November 17.

03. Hillbilly Elegy was very much on my to read list, but the results of the elections bumped it up. I understand why people voted against him, but I do have trouble understanding why anyone would vote FOR him –  this book is supposed to help.

04. I just picked up my hold for Outlander (television show) at the library. I’m looking forward to watching it while I am on maternity leave. Clearly, I have BIG plans for my productivity.

05. In my last post I mentioned choosing between Acadia National Park (in Maine) and Olympic National Park (in Washington). I’m still thinking on it, but the above photo is Acadia (found here).

06. Rest in peace Leonard Cohen. This will never not be an amazing song.

Lately

Olympic National Park
Option A: Olympic National Park


Making
: Oh, am I still expected to cook?
Drinking: Water, water, water, and occasionally watered down tea.
Reading: Inherit the Bones by Emily Littlejohn. So far, so good!
Organizing: A little of everything. Cleaning here and there.
Coveting: A Forestbound bag. Gorgeous and interesting, right?
ListeningGod’s Gonna Cut You Down // Johnny Cash
Watching: NOT ALIAS. I was extremely sad that Netflix pulled this show just as I was halfway through season three.
Smelling: Breakfast potatoes. Not mine, sadly.
Wishing: To both go into labor and not go into labor. Is it too much to ask to HAVE COMPLETE CONTROL over every aspect of the process? I think not.
Loving: Pizza. As one does.
Adoring: Halloween. I love this season, weather permitting.
Needing: Sleep! I am so exhausted with no hope of it getting any better.
Feeling: Sore. But it comes with the territory and I’m okay with it (most days).
Wearing: Stretchy stuff, because when you don’t think you can get any bigger, you can. Which, given how small my baby is predicted to be, just seems unfair.
Wanting: Birkenstocks. Still. I blame this on the ridiculously hot and prolonged summer Denver is having (I refuse to call this 80+ shit fall. Where’s the snow? Where’s the rain?) and my swollen feet.
Wondering: About that delicate, impossible work life balance. It’s strange to talk to people about leave time. People who don’t have babies think 10-12 weeks is an incredibly generous amount of time off. Those who have had one recently know how messy and emotional things still are after only two months postpartum. I do have to return to work, I don’t have a choice, and I do want to, but if I had 4-5 months off (rather than 2.5), I’d be both a better employee and parent.
Thinking: About this post from Andi, so good! Because I am too old for this.
Hiking: Ha. Hahaha. I do walk. A little. But I am, VERY TENTATIVELY, planning a vacation next year. The question is… Acadia National Park or Olympic National Park?

Photo found here, from what looks like a defunct Instagram account (sad!).

The List // October

to-do-list

So I have a bit of blogging paralysis, one might say. I fret about the fact I have nothing to say (well, nothing suitable for public consumption) and then I say nothing at all. Vicious cycle.

My reviews sit unwritten. My bookish and not so bookish thoughts stay unshared. And I have that vague “what am I missing/am I left?” out of the blogging world that I rarely participate in anymore. It’s weird. More than anything, I think I need to get into the habit of writing again.

It other news… Let’s address my recent goals.

In September I was hoping to:

01. Go camping in Rocky Mountain National Park. Done! As evidenced here and here.

02. Paint. Nope, but I picked a color!

03. Blog once a week/Read one book a week. I thought I had failed miserably, but I had 6 posts (7 if you include my last goal post) and I read a few books I really enjoyed.

04. Get a nursery going. Well…not exactly, but I did buy a car seat and a chair. It’s the little things?

05. Save money. So-so. I bought a car seat, a crib sheet, a rocking chair, and some baby clothes that didn’t have disgusting stains on them. Also, in this regard, I didn’t realize when I packed away clean baby clothes the hidden stains would show up in storage. I should’ve known, but I didn’t.

06. Cook at home more. Fail. We’ve had family in town, so I didn’t pay for a lot of my dining out, though that doesn’t quite excuse it.

Now for October:

01. Keep up blogging once a week and add commenting to the mix. Specifically, I’d like to catch up on the bookish six degrees of separation.

02. Paint. Is it of any interest to post about the progress? I don’t know.

03. Have a baby/reach full term. Every time I say this, I just know he/she will stay in until mid-November. But as long as it stays in long enough for me to get my ballot in the mail, I’m good. Make sure you vote!

04. Actually get rid of all the stuff I decided to donate. It’s currently sitting on the floor mocking me.

05. Get through my work schedule. I have several night/outreach events that I’m scheduled for in October and my exhaustion has been extreme as of late.

06. Deep clean my house. It’s good to have goals?

What’s on your list? Has anyone else figured out how to send motivation to someone else? I totally need that!

The List // September

to-do-list
First let’s revisit August, shall we?

  1. Swimming. Done (as seen here, fully clothed, I’m way too pregnant to post myself in actual swimwear.)
  2. Organize two closets. Done.
  3. Paint. Hahaha, nope.
  4. Monitor Craigslist like a stalker. Done, but without success.
  5. Read four books this month. Yes!
  6. Hem the curtains I bought a year ago. No, no, no. Still embarrassed, though I may take the suggestion to use iron on hem tape (thanks, Katie!).
  7. Exercise (beyond a brisk walk) twice a week. No, but with good reason. Higher intensity exercise (than say walking or swimming) is out for the remainder of my pregnancy.
  8. Create one literary mixtape. Done, it’s here.
  9. Finish watching Stranger Things. I said it was tough for me to watch tv and I really meant that. So, another big nope…
  10. Print some of my Instagram pictures (and create our family travel book). Half. I printed some new instagram pictures.
  11. Finish building my fauxdenza. YES. It’s beautiful (for Ikea).

Now onto September…

  1. Go camping in Rocky Mountain National Park. This is absolutely one of those things that reads better on paper than in actual experience, but I’m going to give it a try. I’m hoping to be pleasantly surprised.
  2. Paint. Yep, still on here.
  3. Blog once a week/Read one book a week. I fondly remember a time when this wasn’t necessary to list, but…life.
  4. Get a nursery going. I wish I didn’t care about this, but I do… I am too poor to love good design. Plus the odds of me getting it done after the baby is born are quite low…
  5. Save money. This sort of goes against number four (which still needs to happen at some point, I’m not talking an extensive nursery or anything). But I am definitely coming up to one of my sore points… Unpaid maternity leave! My maternity leave will extend over the most expensive time of the year (Thanksgiving, Christmas, New Years), so I better save now.
  6. Cook at home more. I generally do, but lately I’ve been putting in a lot of extra hours at work and my kids have practice and/or lessons until 7… You get the idea. It also ties in with #5.

What is on your list?

(Image found here)

The List // August

to-do-list

It’s been a rough summer, not terrible, by any means, but…long? I don’t know. Let’s start with what I can’t control. It’s hot. I don’t have air conditioning. I’m carrying 10 pounds too many and I feel like I’m constantly overheating. When I left work today it was 97 degrees.

My face just made an involuntary cringe.

Next up… We refinanced our home in June in the hope of getting quite a few house projects done. First up? Finishing the basement (to escape some of the heat). We painted. We cleaned. We bought carpet. We had it installed Friday afternoon. Sometime between Friday night and Saturday morning, a pipe broke in our basement (behind the drywall), flooding a large portion of our new carpet. It’s fixed now.

So the things I’ve been working on lately have not fallen into the “fun” category, but they certainly have to be completed. And I’m on a bit of a deadline to get my tasks done. The point of this post is to remind myself of what I want (and need) to do. If I publish it, it means I’ll be obligated to complete it, right? RIGHT.

(Side note: Did anyone else ever follow Young House Love in their heyday? I did, and I was always liked their Listy McListerson posts.)

  1. Swimming. I’m starting with an easy one (and a sanity savor). It’s cool and floating is one of the few ways I feel comfortable these days (and I have at least 12 weeks to go).
  2. Organize two closets. My closet is organized, actually, so this only applies to the closets of my kids. I need to pull clothes that don’t fit them and figure out the clothing situation for the new baby (I donated almost all of the infant clothes I had, because no more babies…(eyeroll)).
  3. Paint. I don’t even know where to start, but there are plenty of rooms that need it. So…make a plan and then execute.
  4. Monitor Craigslist like a stalker. I need to replace my dining room table, but I’m cheap.
  5. Read four books this month. One a week seems like an accomplishable task.
  6. Hem the curtains I bought a year ago. This one is just embarrassing.
  7. Exercise (beyond a brisk walk) twice a week.
  8. Create one literary mixtape. I’m building in blog writing to the list, because it might be the only way I fit it in.
  9. Finish watching Stranger Things. There aren’t even that many episodes. Does anyone else find it difficult to watch television (but enjoy it when you do)? I don’t sit still easily, so this is actually a tough one for me.
  10. Print some of my Instagram pictures (and create our family travel book). I like to make books that show where we’ve been. I need to catch up on our trips to the Outer Banks, Big Bend National Park, Lake Tahoe, Big Sur, Devils Tower, and Crater Lake. Someday my children will appreciate everywhere I make them go (and that I’ve documented it), right?
  11. Finish building my fauxdenza. I’m working on one like this one (from Yellow Brick Home).

So my August goals are totally doable, right? I think so. Feel free to point out what I don’t finish (I imagine I will post an update).

Also, to close out the post on a positive note and to make you feel old, 30 years ago today Kristy’s Great Idea was published (and The Babysitter’s Club was launched).

What’s on your to-do list?

(Image found here)