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Laundry, laundry, more laundry.
Our house is still on the market. And at just less than 5 weeks’ time, it is not even that long, so I cannot complain. But I will say that I cannot wait to be done with this process – to know what house we’ll choose next, to have the boxes unpacked, to not be expecting someone at my door ALL THE TIME. We’ve had so much traffic, like a potential buyer every 3 days or so and more on the weekends. It’s Thursday as I write this, and we’ve seen three since Monday. Everyone is so nice in the feedback given to our realtor but no actual offer yet. C’mon people. SOMEONE BUY MY HOUSE.
It’s not even the cleaning that bothers me. I’ve discovered that if I can begin the day by making all the beds, getting some laundry done, and keeping the kitchen clean after breakfast, the rest of the day is not too difficult, even with very little notice.
The painful problem is the leaving.
It’s inevitably the middle of the afternoon nap cycle or the hour before dinnertime that someone needs to see the house, and I pile the kids in their carseats and go somewhere, and I’d say at least 30% of the time, the visitor is late or even has some last minute something where they can’t show at all. It’s maddening.
So for now, we are just waiting for things to fall into place, and I really believe that things end up as they should. But I am definitely wishing that whoever is “supposed” to end up in this house would find it already. Until then, waiting and wishing.
I spent four years of my life at a tiny liberal arts women’s college. I think for anyone at any variety of college, it is amazing to look back and examine who you were at 18 years old and the person you emerge to be at 22. It’s a time of so much growth and change.
But this place is especially good at molding and shaping women in those special years. Its small size and the culture of the university allow you to build such solid relationships with professors and peers. You end up involved in at least ten clubs by sophomore year and eventually taking leadership positions in most of them. It is the one and only women’s college in the country with national Panhellenic sororities. It always seems like an oxymoron to some women I meet who ask how we had sororities without fraternities, as if one can’t exist without the other. I can’t help but laugh since many sororities were founded on women’s college campuses to begin with. And we are the only surviving system left at a women’s institution.
I believe in single-sex education, and I learned so much among women that I could not have learned elsewhere. It’s why I returned to another highly-esteemed women’s college for graduate school. I am incredibly grateful for my time at my undergraduate institution and the amazing reunion I got to celebrate this weekend. Ten years! TEN. Not sure how that happened. We had a great university-sponsored dinner on Friday night and then rented a lake house to enjoy more time together. Then the next day was full of all the traditions we are used to celebrating at every annual reunion weekend. Receptions and brunch and mimosas and sundresses and catching up with old friends and professors. It truly is one of my most favorite weekends of the year.
I got to catch up with my favorite English majors, remembering how many last-minute papers we struggled through together and laughing about all the funny quirks of old professors.
And a few sorority pledge sisters stayed in the lake house together and enjoyed a lot of time this weekend. I can’t believe we met 14 years ago. I love seeing where life has taken us since graduation, only better and brighter.
There was so much celebrating and countless laughs and shared moments that can only come from people who know you so well and for so long. I love how old friendships slip back on and feel comfortable immediately. You just pick right back up where you left off.
And as we age, I know the titles and responsibilities just grow bigger and bigger. Motherhood, career, physical distance between old friends. A lot of life has happened in a decade. It feels so liberating, if just for a weekend, to strip all of it away and get down to the person you are underneath.
I know I am the last person to give this a try, it seems. We had spaghetti squash last week for the first time. Recipes are all over Pinterest and FoodGawker, and it’s seemed intriguing for a while.
For our inaugural run at this, I did something simple and traditional and made these Spaghetti Squash Boats. They were a hit! I didn’t get a real photo, but everyone had their own little half, and it was a winner with a sometimes-picky toddler. He loved the idea of his own little “boat” for dinner.
Other recipes I’m dying to try with this…..
I don’t know why spring has taken so long to show her face in Atlanta, but she has. It has been COLD for much of the past few weeks. But this weekend, she started to show up a bit and the forecast shows some sunny skies this week. It feels like I’m coming out from under a heavy rock. We’ve missed the sun around here.
So Easter was perfectly timed with the fresh weather. I haven’t downloaded from the real camera yet, but I got a few with my phone, too. It was Norah’s first Easter!
And Jude is the perfect age for finding so much joy in these traditions. The Easter Bunny brought him a new book that is perfect for his recent fascination with the word underpants. It cracks him up!
All in all, I am feeling lucky to have these two and looking forward to a new season with my little family.
Happy Easter and happy spring to you, too!
I meant to post last week with a few recipes for the self-designed cleanse I am still doing that I wrote about before. But I forgot, and of course, now I can’t remember what I ate. I can hardly remember what I did five minutes ago – which is one reason I love this blog. Writing things down is pretty much the only way I know they happened lately. Ha.
The summation is this: I added gluten back in last week but continued to avoid dairy and sugar. I tried to stick with my own home-milled wheat, but I went for a store-bought sandwich twice for the sake of busy scheduling, so I got a little of “normal” bread as well. I noticed absolutely no ill effects at all. So I know a lot of people say gluten is the devil and that we shouldn’t eat it. And I’m sure eating less of it and more fruits and veggies is a good thing. But I’ll say that humans have been eating grain for thousands of years, and I don’t feel anything negative from the occasional slice of bread. Not at all.
I did falter with two oatmeal-chocolate-chip cookies last weekend and felt a little icky afterwards. (It’s a long story, but I needed chocolate consolation after my freezer killed almost A HUNDRED OUNCES of breastmilk. My entire stash. Waaahhhhh.) And I cheated with a coke last week and felt SO SO GROSS. I can’t even explain how not well I felt after drinking it. So I’m pretty sure sugar is the culprit, as one would assume.
I am slowly reintroducing dairy as of yesterday, and man, I’ve missed my yogurt. This whole exercise has certainly opened my eyes as to how much dairy I consume. Which is to say a lot. While it’s alright in small quantities, I’m guessing cheese in one form or another four times a day is not ideal. Ha.
So for now, I am still sugar striking and trying to stay on the straight and somewhat narrow.
Norah turned ten months old yesterday. How is that possible?
We are nearing the big number one, and it will be here before I know it. I ordered invitations for her birthday party and ordered an adorable little birthday outfit on Etsy this week. I hope to set up her one year photos sometime soon. I can’t believe it.
I am not as sappy or sentimental about it as I thought I’d be though. She is becoming so much fun with such a little personality, and I think that is overshadowing the fact that she is soon to be a toddler.
This month was full of lots of moving. Cruising is now her preferred mode of transportation, and she is a fast little crawler, too. We also got teeth! Three have broken the surface a bit – one on the bottom and two on the top. I’m pretty sure that other bottom one is soon to follow, and she is copying big brother’s teething pattern which is to cut a handful of teeth at once. We are beginning to occasionally hear what sounds like real words, too. She has been saying “mama” and “dada” for a while now, but she erupted a loud and clear “yay!” in music class last week right after we all sang the same word. She also lies on our dog and pulls his ears and laughs and repeatedly says “duh-duh” – which I really can’t tell if it’s “dog-dog” or his name “Tucker.” Either way, it is her name for him and she repeats it often.
She is such a fun little lady who is equal parts curious and laid-back. It’s been a great few weeks!
I’m plugging right along on the health challenge, and it’s getting both easier and harder in ways. Adding gluten-free grains and lean meats solved my problem with consuming enough calories for breastfeeding, and it’s helping a little with the monotony as well.
In my quest to break up the repetition, I discovered quite a few breakfast quinoa recipes, and there are varieties all over the internet. The version I ended up trying was a welcome break from my smoothies. Filling and warm and tasty.
- Boil one cup of almond milk
- Add 1/2 cup of quinoa
- Return to boil and simmer for 15 minutes, stirring occasionally
- Add teaspoon of sucanat (could use brown sugar), dash of cinnamon, and a handful of raisins
- Cook for 10 minutes longer
I did add a splash (maybe 1/4 cup?) of water in the last 5 minutes to make it a bit looser and less gritty, and I decided to throw some coconut on top. This is a flexible idea that you can adapt to anything. I’m thinking maple syrup and pecans would be great, too. Endless possibilities! Quinoa serves up a lot of protein and makes a filling breakfast. I never would have thought to serve it as anything other than a savory side dish if it weren’t for my whole detox plan. If nothing else, I love that this is showing me a few new ideas to add to my usual rotation.
For the most part, I have stuck to my pledge. I think the teaspoon of sucanat is against the rules technically. And of course, I am still hanging on to my morning coffee. But I’ve been truly dairy-free for five whole days, and that’s miraculous for this cheese fiend. Ha!
Breakfasts: oat flour banana pancakes, breakfast quinoa
Dinners: Grilled chicken with roasted cauliflower and asparagus, chicken with rice
Snacks: smoothies, apples with cashew butter
Cashew butter has been another blessed discovery with this plan. Where has it been all my life!?