We’ve had a really fun October and November, and it doesn’t seem to be slowing down. As usual we’ve had a hard time saying “no” to things like travel, visitors, and…oh…you know…appendix surgery. Whomp whomp. I’ll get to that in a minute. (But, do you like how I am throwing out excuses so you’ll forgive my long blog absence?)
Jonathan and I visited his brother Matt in Washington DC last month. We had an incredible time, and not just because I pretended to be Kerry Washington everywhere we went, and not just because we didn’t have children with us. (Although, let’s be honest, traveling without children is AH-MAZing and SO EASY and SO RELAXING and did I mention I read three books and watched a whole movie on the airplane?)
It’s been 15 years since my last trip to Washington, and nothing about it was disappointing. The food, the sights, the leaves, the lack of tourists, the fun Saturday morning run to the Capitol, the late night shenanigans at the Lincoln Memorial, the Newseum and the National Cathedral were a few highlights. (That photo, above, is the first of two trips we took to the Lincoln Memorial. What a view, right? And don’t you love how we’re so awkward?)
The best part about our visit was having uninterrupted time with Matt and his almost-bride, Elizabeth. I’ve known my brother-in-law since he was about 14, and watching him grow-up has been a huge delight and encouragement to me. He picked a wonderful girl to marry, who we can’t wait to officially embrace next spring in Jackson, Mississippi.
After our DC trip I decided that summer in Santa Barbara is officially over. I know this because:
- There’s ONE big, beautiful tree on our street with red, falling leaves and it happens to be in my front yard
- We’re stopped running our living room fan (but we still have most of the windows open every afternoon)
- I need to bring a sweatshirt if I leave the house in the morning or late afternoon
- The tourists are (kind of) gone
After eight autumns in Sacramento, I’ve forgotten what autumn (or the lack thereof) feels like in Southern California. Every morning I reach for my leggings and scarves only to put them back into my closet and reluctantly grab jeans instead. To be honest, if I wanted to still wear shorts, I probably could. But it just seems wrong.
What else have we been up to, and why haven’t I been blogging? Our weekends are insane, I tell you, and our weeks are even crazier.
Owen started walking, which means I’m chasing and saying “NO” and cleaning up a lot more messes. His zombie walk and protruding belly are heart melting but I’m exhausted.
Anna is swimming a few times a week, and it’s a blast to watch her make big improvements. She wouldn’t put her face in the water when she started lessons, and now, three months later, she’s a little goggle wearing guppy. (I won’t claim she is swimming yet, but, she’s wiggling underwater so that kind of counts, right?)
We joined a homegroup this fall, I’m also a MOPS table leader, and we’re helping with Sunday school. Basically we’re spending a lot of time at church these days, which is great, because we love our church. Also, #weareovercommitted
The magazine is still very fun, and it’s also teaching me a lot about time management. I don’t have enough childcare right now and I find myself working during most naps and a lot of evenings. I’m still trying to find my sweet spot when it comes to balancing work and writing, and while I’m not unhappy in the slightest, I am…well…frazzled.
A few weeks ago, after seven long months of separation, our family returned to the City of Trees for three wonderfully full days. Zach and Dana’s new house sits right on McKinley Park, and I loved my early morning runs through the leaves. (Listening to the Serial podcast, because I can’t.stop.listening.) I also attended a Kidaround party, saw Ashlee’s new house and held Carson (he’s sooooo little and so cute!), stayed out until last call for Sharon and Dana’s birthdays at Mix, ate at Cafe Bernardo (twice!), drove stealthily past our little house (twice!), walked with Tammy and Sharon, caught up with Alicia, Allison and the Annas, and ate a Ginger Elizabeth cookie. Really, could the weekend have gone any better? I think not.
**cough cough** It should be noted that all of us got head colds while visiting and certain children woke at 5:30am most mornings, so we came back to Santa Barbara extremely tired. Owen threw up in the car on the way home, and Anna came down with a stomach bug the next day….so, perhaps it could have gone a little better?…but whatever. #realmomtalk
After Sacramento, Jonathan came home to a scheduled appendectomy. His latest scan showed something on his appendix–probably a benign cyst of some kind– so, he was advised to have it taken out as soon as possible in the event it may burst at any time. We’re both grateful the surgery could be planned for, covered by insurance, and that there doesn’t appear to be anything malignant in his body. Poor guy is still exhausted and can’t pick up our children or exercise for awhile. 🙁
Moving right along…
Our wild and crazy autumn isn’t over just yet. We’re headed to San Diego this weekend for a law school friend’s wedding, and then to Sierra Madre for Thanksgiving. In December we plan to be home every single weekend (PTL!) I’ve been putting together our kids’ advent calendar and can’t wait to start a few new traditions with them this year. Can you believe Christmas is around the corner?
I want to conclude this little post by admitting..for my own sake…that I needed to write out what we’ve been up to lately because it has felt like, well, a lot. We’ve been doing fun, worthwhile things but eventually it wears me down to my bones. I love this article, The Disease of Being Busy. As a challenge to myself, I’ll be back later this week to answer the author’s question, “How is the state of your heart today?”
In the meantime, what are you up to these days, and more importantly, how is your heart?