last packed school lunch day

Today was the last day I needed to pack lunches for the Girl and Monkey Boy. I can’t believe that our insulated lunch bags and bento lunch boxes made it through the entire school year, even though I wasn't so sure that I had anything in the house to pack in them for their lunches. I was cutting it kind of close with meal planning. I have fruit aplenty and some carrots and a cucumber. In the pantry, I have a lot of nuts and some dried fruit and protein bars. I also have a cabinet full of spices. You can just imagine the conversation in the cafeteria, “I got some wasabi almonds, dried apricots, half a cuke, and a jar of fennel. Anyone wanna trade?”

hakuna matata, means no worries

We have been packing. Packing a lot. In between packing, we are painting. And cleaning. And landscaping. So, the other day after yet another run to the storage unit for more boxes and bubble wrap, we all stopped a local diner for lunch. There at our table in the diner was a small jukebox. They kids were fascinated. “You used to pay money to play songs?” Ash laughed and pulled out her iPhone.


Ren gets homework—four nights a week—in kindergarten. It’s not that we are opposed to homework at such a young age, it’s just surprising. Ash didn’t start getting homework until First Grade, and then it was all reading homework. She had to keep a journal of all the books or magazines she actually read. So we would read out loud to each other. She read 75 books that year. They were simple and short, but still that is quite impressive that she tripled what was required. Ren’s homework consists of letters, numbers and counting, most often a page or two. B has taken on the task of homework manager.

happy anniversary

Our 21st Wedding Anniversary was suddenly upon us. We made no plans to celebrate the fact that if our marriage were a person, he was now legal to drink alcohol in all 50 United States.
The big day fell on a Thursday. We needed to leave the office an hour earlier than normal to pick the kids up from school rather than let them ride the bus home. Ash’s violin tutor was coming at 4 pm, a half hour earlier than the kids would get home if they rode the bus. Then B had a 5 pm meeting back at the church and band practice until 10 pm. It would not be a romantic, carefree day spent toasting our love and reciting poetry to each other. We spent the day at work, where once again, I was up against deadlines and moving as quickly and efficiently as possible.
    “Have you eaten lunch?” B asked me as we passed each other in the hall.

a super conflict

We all saw it, but Ren saw it first. He stood on his chair in the restaurant and pointed, “Mommy look.” When I first saw it, I smiled, but then I realized that this could mean trouble. I looked across the table at Brently and nodded to the young couple a few tables away from us. That’s when he turned around and saw it, too.
    “Someone really should say something to them,” he announced.

there's no such thing as a free lunch

The first day, they both got chicken and cheese cubes, chocolate raspberry greek yogurt, raisins, and for snack (because they both get a lunch period and a snack period) carrots and pretzels with hummus. When they came home that day, Ash raved about her lunch and said, “I loved it. You can send me the same thing every day.” Just like her Dad, the same thing every day for lunch my self- satisfaction and congratulation was short lived, “I didn’t like the yogurt,” Ren said. “I don’t want that again. And I couldn’t open the hummus container.” I showed him how to open the plastic container.

air conditioning good

Air conditioning, ahhh, the mark of true civility. When it's available, all things are good and right in the world, but when it's not available...

Not long ago, my sister-in-law posted about the demise of her car's the air conditioning--and she lives in the South where heat and humidity are as referable as Catfish po boys, big hair and "y'all". It reminded me of a couple dreadful days a few years ago when B and I drove from Dallas to Seattle in July.