Friday miscellany: Bento boxes and the last whiffs of honeysuckle

June is flying by and the honeysuckle flowers on the vine, harbingers of early summer, are starting to shrivel up. When I got home at 8 p.m. the other night from a trip, I made a point of finding a patch just to take a few last sniffs.

This was the last week of full-time school. Next week features 5 half days. This would definitely not have been my first choice to round out the school year. Everyone still has to wake up early, but the kids are only out of the house until lunch time. I seriously doubt much work will get done.

In any case, I celebrated some little wins. The camp forms for my eldest all appear to be in and approved. We will likely make a Target run on Monday to get dorm things like a small bottle of laundry detergent, a fan, and extra long twin sheets.

Speaking of sheets…My husband and I both made it to the 12-year-old’s class production of Antigone. The Greek chorus all wore sheets and sandals. We had the sheet but needed more convincing-looking sandals. So we are now the owners of some sport sandals that looked reasonably Greek but not ancient-Greek enough that they wouldn’t be usable for the future.

The 10-year-old has been stepping up her lunch-packing game. In this family, after about age 8, you either buy lunch or make your own. She has not been enamored with the cafeteria offerings, so she has been packing, and began watching the Family Fudge videos. She requested (and got) a bento box and has been going all in. For instance, she scored the edges of the cucumber slices so they’d look prettier. (See photo.)

The 2-year-old also has a bento box for his out-and-about lunches (he has a very busy social calendar!). We got a snazzy new water table for his outdoor play, since the one we got for the now teen and pre-teen children a decade ago has definitely seen better days. He is just a walking hand-me-down on everything else, though. His sandals are repeats from the 15-year-old (!). The shorts he wore today may be too, though I know they are at least from the 12-year-old. Plus an adorable Star Wars shirt that the 7-year-old wore many times.

The 7-year-old has been reading through the Harry Potter series with my husband. They are rounding toward the end of book 2, so this is very exciting! He was allowed to read on his own when my husband was traveling this week (again…). After reading through the Harry Potter series three times my husband turns out to be OK with not reading every single word on round 4.

It’s going to be another full weekend, though I’m debating how full. I had thought about going into NYC to see my old choir perform. They are premiering seven new works, and I am a big supporter of new choral music. But they do have a livestream of the concert, and Amtrak appears to have cut their service to the point where you can’t leave the city after 8 p.m. on weekends. I am still somewhat petrified of driving and parking in Manhattan. So we shall see.

My Medium column this week looked at Simple Ways to Hold Yourself Accountable. I will email a handful of accountability partners today with updates on what I’ve done on various projects.

The Before Breakfast podcast offered suggestions such as “Don’t waste those minutes before a call,” and “Do a day date,” and “Just send a photo.”

I appreciate all the suggestions for a 2023 reading project. I will keep pondering it!

4 thoughts on “Friday miscellany: Bento boxes and the last whiffs of honeysuckle

  1. Ooh can I offer a tip for dorm living/laundry? Buy the detergent pods rather than the bottle! Much lighter to carry when you’re doing laundry not in your room/floor/building. Also I assume that you’ve got shower flip flops and a caddy.

    I’m so impressed by the 10 yo’s lunches! Way to take to chore and make it fun.

  2. Driving in Manhattan is not as scary as it seems. I used to be worried about it but I drive in daily now. You can never really drive very quickly and with phone navigation and parking apps it is much less fraught that it used to be. There is an app called Best Parking and you can reserve your spot in advance and knew exactly where you are going to park and what you are going to pay. Just build in extra time on the way in for bridges/tunnels and city traffic.

  3. Try the Megabus if you want to get out of NYC after 8 without driving. However, it will only take you to Philly, in which case you will still have to get home. And it’s not as nice as the train.

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