Wednesday, October 17, 2018


I have seven thousand (conservative estimate) things on my to do for today and very little time (NO TIME, really) to do them.

So, of course, I am writing a blog post for tomorrow, which will be today when you read it because auto-pub.

Tuesday morning at 6:10, there I was exercising away on my elliptical in my basement horror chamber when I glanced at my phone and discovered it was Jack's half birthday.  Facebook reminded me, in fact, because it showed me a picture of Jack blowing out some candles on a halfcake in 2017.  I was like OH MY GOSH!  I HAVE A CAKE MIX IN THE CABINET, and I leapt off my machine to throw together half a cake.  I also made chocolate buttercream frosting, finished my work out, and threw the cake in the freezer after it came out of the oven.  BEFORE JACK WOKE UP.

When he and Cooper went to walk the dog, Dorothy and I frosted and decorated it.

 And also made banana ghosts.
 Happy half birthday, Jack.
And thank you, Facebook, for letting me be a total MOTY this morning.

Tuesday, October 16, 2018

The last few days, a haiku

 Too cold for sports ball
outside. And yet. Soccer and
baseball all weekend.

Monday, October 15, 2018

Weeknight movie date

Sometimes it's fun to surprise the kids with a night that feels completely unexpected.

We did that on Thursday by heading to see Goosebumps 2: Haunted Halloween, which Cooper has been DYING to see. (And yes, there are actual good movies in the theater that I want to see right now, but I am a giver).

Look how excited he is!
 Ben, too, clearly. (Dorothy came straight from dance class)
 Jack and I probably love movies the most.  We will see ANYTHING
 A big hit!  Yuge!
We even ordered a pizza at the movie theater, so when we got home, it was time to just put everyone to bed.  Between school all day and move all night, it was like we didn't even have any parenting work to do, and the kids were so surprised/delighted by such a small outing.  Win/win for sure!

Sunday, October 14, 2018

What We're Eating This Week 42/52

We know that Harry will have hockey practice this coming week (WINTER IS COMING), but we don't know when yet (no-- that's not even a little bit annoying. why do you ask?).  So, I think the best thing to do is make a bunch of stuff that we can eat and then eat again.

Costco pizza.  Again.  I can't quit it.  (Also we had chicken sweet potato stew on Friday, and it was delicious, but the recipe is a lying liar, and 3 hours on high is NOT ENOUGH.)

BBQ chicken pasta salad
Roasted carrots
Pumpkin bars

Crockpot rotisserie chicken noodle soup
Italian bread

Pulled pork sliders
Chips and dip with veggies


Spaghetti and garlic bread, salad, broccoli (all of this from a jar/box)


Saturday, October 13, 2018

Some favorites

 $5 wine!  Halloween banners!  I'm all the way in.
 YOU GUYS!  THESE TRADER JOE'S FACE MASKS.  You need to buy them.  As many as you can.  I use them once a week, and I see immediate and noticeable improvement in my skin.  It feels tighter.  It's more radiant, and the fine lines on my forehead are not as noticeable.
 My favorite holiday movie of all times.
 Jack and I are up to 2 viewings so far this month.  I KNOW WE CAN DO BETTER.

Friday, October 12, 2018

Self Care When You're Stressed Out

Waiting for my follow-up mammogram was a stressful time for me. 

On the one hand, I knew that I still had statistics on my side and I was probably OK.  On the other hand, I live at the edge of a slippery slope fallacy basically all of the time anyway, so I had definitely teetered down the precipice of that chain of thinking.

I relied on the most wonderful friend in the world, whom I have known since FIRST GRADE.  In first grade (and I am sure I have told this story before-- and she told it in her wedding toast to us as my maid of honors, but I digress) I met this person because our teacher left us lined up in the hall while she dashed inside the office, and I realized that I would never be able to find my way back to the classroom without her and what if she never came back?  So I burst into tears.  My friend introduced herself with all 3 of her names and said I didn't have to worry because she knew everything and she would take care of me.  And that has basically been our friendship dynamic for the last 34 years. 

She listened to me vent my fears, told me about her own experiences with the procedures, and was a source of much needed distraction on the phone and via text all week. 

My advice, if you are stressed, is to rely on your best friend from first grade because someone who has known you that long will also know exactly what to say.  If you lack a Katie, though, then I have a few other tips, too.

Selfie in bed.  

I did this literally, but I think it's also a metaphor.  Basically, just steal a few moments to revel in ordinary luxury.  (Also, I hung some pictures one day while the kids were in school, and I did a terrible job!  Oops!  Sorry, Ben!)  (And!  There are at least 4 holes for every frame).

 Go to the movies! 

 I saw A Star Is Born with friends and LOVED it.  But!  Awkwardly!  Only half of us were eating at the movie theater bar.  I typically order a pizza there because it is the least caloric thing on the menu.  A medium clocks in at 770 calories, and I only eat about 1/3 of a medium pizza.  That, plus a glass of wine is totally reasonable, especially compared to all the other greasy fried options.  Only THEY BROUGHT ME A LARGE accidentally.  One friend had her own food; one is doing a Whole 30, and one doesn't at dairy or gluten.  So it was aaaaaall me.

 Appreciate cute kids things.  

Like this smoothie mustache! Even though it annoys you usually when she smears food all over the place!

 Break out the craft supplies!

I thought only Dorothy and Cooper would want to make Halloween-themed door art, but much to my surprise/delight Harry and Jack joined right in.
 Jack gave his felt pumpkin sequined acne.
 Harry's had a really scary fish gape.
 My kids!  Inherited my art talent.  (Sorry kids)

 Set a fancy table and cook a YUGE dinner.  

This pasta was SO GOOD I think I am going to make it for our new next door neighbors.

 Finally, if you're stressed,  try to live in the moment and deal just with what's immediately in front of you.  

And what's immediately in front of you?  Hygge all the way. (Without the xenophobic nationalism, but add one smelly dog).

Thursday, October 11, 2018

MYO Pizza D(ecorate)YO Cookie Night

The kids loooooooove movie night.  So when they came home from school on Friday to the news that we were going to have movie night and plus also make our own pizzas and decorate sugar cookies, they were so excited to spend a cozy night in.  I mean, it was beyond time for our first 2018 viewing of Hocus Pocus.

I made this dough and about 40 pumpkin-shaped cookies (30 for my TAs on Monday) and a huge batch of buttercream frosting (with a hint of pumpkin pie spice because YES) before they got home.  That meant they got to make around 30 more cookies themselves (they truly love to roll out sugar cookies), and I had some that were edible and able to be shared.

I also prepped the pizza dough while they were at school, doubling this recipe.  IT WAS TOTALLY PERFECT, by the way!  You should make it.

Also!  I went to Wal-Mart to buy kiddie craft supplies and found theis totally perfect sweatshirt.  Thin but fleece-lined, oversized, longer in the back.  TWELVE DOLLARS. Are you kidding me??  I want to go back and buy all of the colors.  But I don't think I can because I hate Wal-Mart.

 This face!  Ha!
 Look at her face here!  (Doubling the recipe was almost too much for the bread machine)
 Beatrix got a little floured.
 They seriously love designing their pizzas.
 Even the big ones.
 Beatrix was a fat little Roomba after dinner, circling the kitchen floor and sucking up all of the sprinkles.  I appreciate her.