balance · snapshots

All The Things (November 2018)

I have made a solemn vow to myself that I will return to my biweekly posting schedule as soon as J.J. starts sleeping through the night.

I’ve considered trying to make a lesser commitment in the meantime. I could commit to posting once a week or twice monthly. But nothing sounds quite right. So I will continue to plug on, writing when I can and trying my best to get back on track with biweekly posting.

Here are all the things for this month:

Things I’m Reading: Just finished a fantastic book: An Absolutely Remarkable Thing by Hank Green. Loved it! I then started A Ladder To The Sky, by John Boyne, and I’m loving it so far. I am definitely reading slower than I usually do. #momlife

Things I’m Watching: I’ve been keeping pretty up-to-date with Crazy Ex-Girlfriend and The Good Place. I am continually amazed with these two shows. They keep shifting and changing and still (IMHO) making me laugh and keeping my interest.

Things That I’m Struggling With: Finding time to write and exercise, and maintaining a healthy diet. I do feel somewhat refreshed after my four-day holiday weekend, so I am hoping that I can keep myself on track this week. I don’t have high expectations for exercise; my goal is to do a little yoga every morning, move as much as I can throughout the day, and run on the weekends.

I feel recharged and ready for the month of festivities ahead. Bring it, December!

self-care · snapshots

All The Things (October 2018)

SO. MANY. THINGS.

Well, not so many, really – just a few. Taking care of a newborn and a toddler – working – and sleeping. Those are the things I’ve been doing, all day every day, for the past two months.

However, I’ve squeezed in some THINGS this month – most involving binge-watching shows on Netflix and Hulu.

Things I’m Reading: The books I’ve read this month are The Beginning of Everything; Vox (super scary #MeToo-esque premise!); Pachinko (such an awesome novel); and Lethal White (Robert Galbraith’s latest). Currently reading The 19th Wife and loving it so far.

Things I’m Watching: So much television!  I’m all caught up on Crazy Ex-Girlfriend and The Good Place. I slowed down with my binge of This Is Us – not sure if I’ll get back to it or not. (I hope I do!)  I watched both seasons of Dear White People on Netflix – loved the first season, liked the second season a little less but still enjoyed it. My latest obsession is Black-ish, but that’s an exaggeration since I’m still in the middle of the pilot episode.

Things I’m Working On: My patience. (Taking care of a toddler while caring for a newborn is testing my temper!) AND my self-care. I know this by now, but when things get hectic, my self-care takes a nose dive. I am mid-dive right now, and this week have been aiming to get back on track.

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balance · snapshots

Oops

Oh, boy. Having a newborn baby is not helpful when you’re trying to post consistently on your blog!

My goal is to post on playful + peaceful every Tuesday and every Saturday. I’ve missed two deadlines in a row at this point, and finding the time to write has been really challenging. My hope is that once Baby J.J. starts sleeping through the night – and we are definitely not there yet – then I’ll be able to recalibrate and get my writing schedule back on track.

I’m trying not to feel guilty for slacking on my writing goals. Right now, every single minute of my day is taken up by work, child care, or sleep. THAT’S IT – those three things, and nothing else. It’s an intense and busy and wonderfully adorable and amazing time of life, and it means my regular routine is on hiatus for a while. And that is okay.

My fingers are crossed that I’ll make my next few deadlines and get somewhat back on track. But if not – c’est la vie.

books + reading · snapshots

All The Things (September 2018)

Wow, wow, wow.

This month, the biggest THING is this: We have a new baby boy, a new adoptive child. He is sweet and wonderful and perfect and we are overjoyed.

We’ve been on the adoption wait list for a while, but we haven’t been waiting nearly as long as long as we waited for our oldest child, Edgar. So we were blown away when we got the call from the adoption agency and brought our new son home two days later.

So, there are things this month – but the biggest thing is the tiny baby boy asleep in my arms as I write this.  As for the other things –

Things I’ve Been Reading: The latest Cormoran Strike novel from Robert Galbraith, also known as the alias for J.K. Rowling. Also read this month: How To Be A Happier Parent, I’d Know You Anywhere, and Buddhism Is Not What You Think.

Things I’m Contemplating: How to read the books I want to have read. Like, I want to read books about adoption, mindfulness, and parenting – but they are often way less appealing to me than a good novel. I have no answers; it’s just something I’m thinking about.

Things I’ve Been Listening To: Lots of audiobooks! (Possible solution to the thing I’m contemplating?  We’ll see.)

Things I’m Enjoying; The sweet babyhood of our new baby boy.

Things I’m Struggling With: Making sure my two-year-old is getting all the love and attention and activity and care he needs at a chaotic and tiring family time.

Things I’m Watching: Way more TV than usual!  I started the month bingeing on reruns of The Office and Friends. Moved on to falling in love with This Is Us (always two years behind any pop culture craze) and keeping up to date on The Good Place (very much enjoyed the premiere episode of season 3).

I’m sure I’ll write more about our adoption journey at some point – but for now, these are the things.  14203324_1271024389583870_1636348107344372373_n

snapshots

All The Things (July 2018)

This month has been fantastic. Here are all the things:

Things I’m Reading: This month I read The Heart’s Invisible Furies, by John Boyne, and it was INCREDIBLE. So freaking awesome. Currently I am reading Case Histories, by Kate Atkinson, which is good so far.

Things I’m Watching: The Break with Michelle Wolf; reruns of The Good Place; and the first three seasons of Community, which is such a funny show and has been my comic relief and my stress relief. (A great antidote to the daily news feed, which can really weigh on me.)

Things I’m Trying: I’ve been doing some reflecting about how to best keep my weekly routines. One of the big things I want to try is having a Weekly Planning Date with myself – just sitting down with my planner and thinking about the week ahead, with regard to work, socializing, writing, exercise, cleaning, and meals.

Things I’m Grateful For: A great vacation with the family to Oak Island; some time away from work to rest and recuperate; and some creative writing juices, which have (finally) been flowing!

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snapshots

All The Things (June 2018)

There are SO MANY THINGS to write about this month!

What I’m Abandoning: My quest to have a Social Media Day. I decided to abandon this after I didn’t hear about two big events in the time span I would like. However, I am still trying to figure out how to manage this part of my life, particularly in the wake of recent news. How do I stay engaged without becoming overwhelmed or depressed? If anyone has ideas on this, PLEASE let me know!

What I’m Watching: I had never heard of Michelle Wolf before the “scandal” of this year’s White House Correspondents’ Dinner. She is HILARIOUS. I’m turning to stand-up comedy as a coping tool during these troubled times.

What I’m Reading: Laura Lippman, a detective fiction writer who writes about the greater Baltimore area. I read two of her books earlier this month, and now I’m halfway through The Heart’s Invisible Furies and I am loving it so far!

What I’m Struggling With: My prolific writing routine. There’s been a lot going on and my productivity level has been fluctuating – this post is a day late as a result. But, only a day, and I’m hoping that I am back on track.

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snapshots

All The Things (May 2018)

So many things!  Here’s my May snapshot:

Things I’m Reading: Oh, boy – so weird. In a crazy twist, I’m reading nothing but nonfiction right now! I finished Behold The Dreamers (my book club book) and now I’m reading Meditation Now Or Never by Steve Hagen and Writing Mysteries, a writing advice book edited by Sue Grafton. I sort of miss being lost in an engaging novel, but I’m also feeling really focused and motivated when it comes to writing, and I know that it is so much harder for me to sit down and write when I have an amazing work of fiction on my nightstand. So I’m going to keep this streak going for the moment! (Although – there’s a Laura Lippman novel on my nightstand. If you’re going to WRITE mysteries, you need to READ mysteries…  Right? ;))

Things I’m Listening To: A new podcast!  (New to me, that is.) It’s called #AmWriting with Jess & KJ, and it’s all about writing and publishing. I’m soaking up all the info and loving it. It’s really helping me to feel motivated and hopeful about my writing goals.

Things I’m Doing: Running a LOT!  I’m up to nine miles and getting ready for Race Day on June 2nd, when I’ll be running the Baltimore 10-Miler.

Things I’m Struggling With: Focusing! I’m so excited about writing, but I have such limited time to get it done, and sometimes it’s hard to know what to work on first, and sometimes it’s hard to stick with one good idea and follow it through to the end.

Things Making Me Proud: I’ve published a minimum of two blog posts per week ever since mid-March. That’s only two months, but it’s the first two months that I’ve been able to post that consistently.  Yay me!

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