A tale of two weekends

This weekend had its ups and downs. On the positive side, we did some fun holiday stuff, such as reading book selections from the literary Advent calendar. This included the Grinch, and I always love the Grinch. Even better, my 8-year-old decided to read the Grinch aloud to everyone! And the 10-year-old read The Night Before The Night Before Christmas. They are growing up.

My husband, our daughter, and I went to the 10-year-old's performance of Willy Wonka. He did a great job as Charlie's father, Mr. Bucket, and he had such a fun time performing. Before the show, my husband and I wound up taking our daughter to McDonald's, solo, which she found awesome. (The kids occasionally get one-on-one time with one parent, but both? That is rare!)

Some other good stuff: my husband and I made very tasty lasagna together. The cooking was elaborate (we're talking blending basil leaves into the filling with an immersion blender here) but it was very tasty. And can be lunch for the next few days.

I got a little reading done: Virginia Woolf's A Writer's Diary. I like seeing how she sets goals for writing words, being done with a draft by such and such a date, setting a goal for how many extra pages to "sweat out" of a manuscript, and being obsessed with pre-release sales (all authors are obsessed with sales, but since most of her books were published by the press she and Leonard owned, she was more aware than most authors of the economics). She suffers immensely when drafts aren't going as she wishes, but she's in such bliss when she's obsessed with a novel and writing fast. Alas, with Woolf, one knows these aren't normal highs and lows and her bipolar disorder would eventually do her in. I'm in 1938 now, and I know how this all ends in early 1941, so there's this sense of impending doom.

I sang in church on Sunday. We went to the Advent craft workshop after. In the afternoon, we went hiking in Wissahickon park with some family friends. The route out on the trail was easy; the return on the other side of the river was a much more strenuous hike! We're talking boulders and such, and this metal grate bridge over a gap (pictured). We earned our hot chocolate at the end.

I ran both days. I did the chores I set for myself: hand-washing delicates, sorting the mail pile, looking into a possible credit report issue (nothing it seems - phew), and starting the summer camp spreadsheet (some camps offer discounts if you book by the end of the calendar year. Also, beach rentals are going fast - and I wanted the week of July 4th). My husband has taken ownership of purchasing Christmas presents for the children.

But...there was also a lot of frustration. The 2-year-old is continuing to conduct his reign of terror. Lots of willful destruction, running away, fighting things like diaper changes. Maybe it's the fourth kid thing, but my patience for being kicked in the face while changing someone's diaper is limited. I know he will grow up eventually, but it is not an easy process.

Photo: Wissahickon, the bridge.

View Comments

  • Try the delicates cycle on your washer! I can't think of anything I hand wash anymore... including items I have hand-knit myself! I am seriously impressed that you're already thinking about summer camps. I am spoiled - our school system does 2 full months of free summer school that is just like a camp. Ugh to the toddler reign of terror. I'm in the thick of 4yo tantrums these days.

    • AMEN to the delicates cycle. I have a brand new washer (front loading) and it's very gentle. I wash those in the washer and hang to dry. So much easier, even for my $$$ bras. I was also impressed by the thought of summer camp already. I'm not sure any of the places around here even have a way to sign up yet! We are starting to think more about child care because I have a job interview tomorrow (that involves role playing. Ugh.) And whoa to 2 months through school - I would LOVE that! Our county has a childcare program that is super cheap but mostly unstructured, so I am not so sure about that for long periods of time...

    • @Sarah K - I may look into that delicates cycle. But after finally getting my cheap self to buy some not-at-all-cheap bras last year, I just don't want to ruin them!!

  • We were a bit silly and over scheduled ourselves. I defended (successfully!) my PhD on Friday and we had a Christmas fair and concert on Saturday and swim lessons for baby and Christmas party on Sunday. Both baby and I are now feeling a bit overtired and crabby. I suspect part of it is the post PhD hangover and part is the knowledge that this is my last week of solo mat leave (I have five more weeks but my husband is off, my mom is here, everyone is here for Christmas, and then my dad is staying on as childcare). Baby had vaccines today which didn’t help.

    • @Cb - congrats on depending the PhD! I think whatever happens after, that counts as a successful weekend!

  • My daughter is having toilet training issues with her 3-year-old. UGH. One-on-one time with each kid is SO important (and rewarding)! I'm considering going for the special bra fitting thing. Maybe after the new year. This appears to be my year of Christmas lights events. We went to the Indianapolis Speedway lights and the Museum of Art lights, and this coming weekend we're going to the state fairgrounds for a Chinese lantern festival!