Nighttime Cuddles

Most nights, if M wakes up at 1 AM, it is going to be a rough night. Some nights though, he jumps out of his room and creeps quietly into mine.  I open up the comforter to let him crawl in next to me and he falls quietly asleep snuggled up.

I wonder on those nights if he had a bad dream or was lonely and just needed his mommy to comfort him and make him feel safe.  It’s hard to know what he’s thinking since he is non-verbal and can’t really communicate those kinds of things to me.

I love his silent snuggles though.

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Start to Summer Break

I made it through my first week of summer vacation.  It wasn’t easy, but gave me a better idea of what to expect for the rest of the summer.

The biggest challenges are my limited ability to take on freelance work while managing both of the kids on a daily basis, keeping Q socially engaged with other children his age, a lack of freedom/personal time for my own personal activities (such as exercise), and finding the balance between chores, playtime, errands, and structured activities that works for us.

Next week, both the kids have day camps which I have carefully balanced the drop off and pick up schedules for to manage since they are an hour apart.  Q really needs the social interaction with more kids, so I’m looking forward to it for his sake.  Also, since M has his camp for three days of the week, I’ll be able to get some more work and errands done (and get some walking in) hopefully.

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Frustrations

I started walking 4-5 days a week. Approximately 2.5 miles each day.  I started watching my calorie intake and making healthier food choices.  By like so many women before me, I am finding almost no change in my body to reflect that.  It’s frustrating!

I am not expecting a huge change right away, but some indicator that all the hard work is paying off. Instead, I step  on my smart scale and see my body fat percentage has soared to the highest it has ever been! What!?!

I know I could be doing more to push that dial, but to have it not move at all the way I want it to is frustrating and disheartening.  It makes me feel like all the effort has been for nothing

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Small, Scary Worlds

“People don’t live in a big, scary world; they live in small scary worlds, one accident away from losing everything.”

— Henry Jackson, in “Raptor Ray” by B. Reilly

While I would not personally recommend this book, this particular quote in it really resonated with me.  So often, we look at life through our own fears and apprehensions.  In many ways our fears (and how we face them) define us.

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Olympic Facts for Your Friday

Here are some interesting Olympics facts for your final Friday of the 2018 Winter games.  Why? Because the Olympics are awesome!

Image Credit: The Olympic Rings in Sochi, 2014. PHOTO: Chris Wellhausen

The Music

The renowned American composer, John Williams, has been a composer for Olympic music since 1984.  His 1996 piece “Bugler’s Dream and Olympic Fan” can be heard on NBC during coverage of the 2018 Winter Olympics in PyeongChang, South Korea.  Williams  has composed music for four different Olympics (1984, 1988, 1996 and 2002).  He is also well-known for some of the most recognizable film scores, including Star Wars, Harry Potter, and Jurassic Park.

The Sports

The games this year feature 102 events in 15 different sports.  New events added in 2018 include:

  • Big Air Snowboarding
  • Mass-Start Speed Skating
  • Mixed Doubles Curling
  • Mixed Team Alpine Skiing

The Host “City”

The IOC typically selects a host city about 7 years prior to the games.   PyeongChang, South Korea (pronounced Pee-Yung-Chong NOT Pee-Yong-Chang) won the bid over cities in Germany and France.  The 2018 games represents the first time that South Korea has hosted the Winter Olympics (they hosted the 1988 Summer games in Seoul).  PyeongChang actually refers to the county, rather than a city.  The majority of the games are actually being held in Daegwallyeong-myeon (mountain events) and Gangneung (ice events).

The Torch Relay

Although not a highlight of the games, one of the things I loved about the 2018 Winter Olympics is their very symbolic and unique torch relay.  According to wikipedia, “there were 7,500 torch bearers to represent the Korean population of 75 million people. There were also 2018 support runners to guard the torch and act as messengers.”  I love how they represented their nation in this unique way. I also loved the various different ways they used to transport the torch, including a zip wire, cable car, turtle ship, robots,  and steam train!

The Athletes

Pita Taufatofua – While most people recognize him as the shirtless flag-bearer from Tonga, I was impressed by his appearance for another reason.  Despite living in a tropical nation with no snow, Taufatofua (who competed in taekwondo at the 2016 Summer games in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil) switched to cross-country skiing.  He managed to qualify for the 2018 Winter games on the final day of the qualification period.

Adam Rippon – Not only does this figure skater have his own signature move, dubbed the “Rippon Lutz”, he is also the first openly gay U.S. male athlete to win a medal at the Winter Olympics (bronze in the 2018 team event).  He is also an outspoken advocate for LGBTQ rights and against quiet starvation in athletics.

Askel Lund Svindal –  After a skiing accident in 2016, Svindal damaged his knee and underwent surgery on it in January 2017.  Despite these setbacks, Svindal became his Norway’s first downhill gold medallist at the 2018 games, and at the age of 35 he is the oldest man to win an alpine skiing gold. 

Vincent Zhou – At age 17, he’s the youngest American competing at the 2018 winter games.  During his short program, he landed a quad lutz. A quad lutz is the most difficult move currently recognized as achievable! Nobody before him has ever successfully landed one at the games before.

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The Stuff I Never Did

When you work full-time, you quickly learn to prioritize chores and errands.  If  you’re like me, what you can’t squeeze in during the limited evening and weekend hours, gets shoved on a list of “Stuff I’ll Maybe Get to One Day When I Have More Time”.

My closets, cupboards, and garage have spent the last 9 years accumulating stuff.  Occasionally, I would find a couple hours to clear out some clutter or reorganize, but rarely enough to put a dent in the projects.

But now that I have time, I can finally get around to some of the stuff I never did.

Continue reading “The Stuff I Never Did”

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The Final Countdown: Setting a Schedule, Goals and Expectations

My last day at the office is quickly approaching.  This coming week will be my last one working outside of the home.

In anticipation of that change, I finally decided that I better attempt to set a tentative schedule, goals, and expectations for myself.  I could easily hang out on the sofa watching Netflix or reading books all day if I let myself.

Schedule

It sounds like such a simple thing, but really it’s fraught with inconsistencies. Good planning has to be like a tree.  It has to be both sturdy AND flexible enough to survive.  There’s still some question about how the mornings will pan out, but here is my tentative daily schedule plan:

Continue reading “The Final Countdown: Setting a Schedule, Goals and Expectations”

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