It’s Monday! What Are You Reading? (April 4, 2022)

Hello from the other Washington! I’m off on business for the week – attending internal meetings at corporate headquarters in Seattle. Lots of interesting and timely stuff on the agenda, and there has been talk of karaoke, so please wish me luck. TBH, I can’t believe it’s Monday already. The last couple of weeks have been really fraught – just a lot of work deadlines, many of which involved relying on other people, and I’m a bit fried. These meetings should be a lot of fun and very interesting, but I’m already worried about getting behind on my to-do list.

Rewinding to the weekend, it was a good one – a bit more low-key than they have been recently, although we still got out and about quite a bit, and I got a fair amount done around the house. Saturday morning was devoted to cleaning out and restocking the fridge so Steve and the kids have plenty of fresh food to eat while I’m away, and we also started Phase One of spring cleaning: Steve dragged a metal shelf from the garden shed into the sunroom and I filled it with camping gear that was laying all over the floor. Much better now! In the afternoon, I took Nugget out for a fun outing: indoor skiing! Yes, you read that right. There’s a ski shop in Leesburg that offers two carpeted slopes, one of which works as something like a “ski treadmill” as Steve called it, and Nugget had a lesson. The instructor worked with him on wedge turns, and he’s already looking more consistent. We’re planning to keep up the lessons all summer, probably on about a monthly cadence, to keep his skills sharp for when the mountain opens in December. So fun! Sunday was more of the same – productivity in the morning (this time laundry – I folded about four baskets full – and packing for Seattle) and fun in the afternoon, in the form of a bike ride with Nugget. We took our bikes over to Great Falls Park and rode part of the Old Carriage Road. Other than being menaced by a terrifying butterfly (isn’t it too early?!) it was a delightful ride.

And now I’m off – hopefully; I’m flying Alaska Air and my flight has already been changed once – hoping to get in a couple of Seattle runs in between educational workshops and team bonding sessions.

Reading. Another slow reading week, between work deadlines and trying to get the house in order before I jet off for a week. But a good one! I finished up Before Lunch around midweek and then turned to Green Thoughts: A Writer in the Garden, one of my stack of gardening books I’ve set aside to read in April. I’ll have to put it down for the next few days, since I don’t travel with paperbacks these days (have plenty loaded on my kindle, though, so don’t worry about my reading material!). Around the edges, while commuting and washing dishes and running errands and folding mountains of laundry, I finally finished up 4.50 From Paddington, by Agatha Christie – listened to it on Audible (more below) and really enjoyed it. I’m not sure what my next audiobook will be.

Watching. More this and that. Back episodes of Springwatch, via Britbox. Miranda Mills’ YouTube channel, always. Gardeners’ World on the margins. And a rewatch of one episode of Rock the Park, at the kids’ request. Jack and Colton night-diving with manta rays in Hawaii, prompting Steve to declare that we need to go night diving. We definitely do.

Listening. Mostly Audible this week – 4.50 From Paddington, as noted above, read by Joan Hickson. I keep mentioning that it’s read by Joan Hickson because this is really, really relevant. She played Miss Marple in the iconic TV series and she is, in fact, the quintessential Miss Marple. I can picture her in her grey suit and hat with her knitting as I listen to the audiobook and it’s just the best. And – bonus – she doesn’t try to make her voice artificially deep when reading a man’s dialogue; in fact, she doesn’t change her voice at all for any of the characters; she’s just Joan Hickson throughout. It’s literally like being read a story by Miss Marple. It’s everything.

Making. More work product again last week, which is good – it’s nice to be busy – but goodness was I stressed out for awhile there. But I made some other good stuff. The aforementioned folded laundry and filled camping shelf; all right, that’s not very exciting but it was satisfying. More exciting: a roast chicken, the remains of which are now in the freezer waiting to be made into lemon-ginger scented bone broth when I get home from Seattle. And I finally finished Nugget’s scarf, which he tried on and proclaimed “the coziest.”

Moving. Not a good week in movement; I was just too busy with work and all that, and I didn’t do a good job of prioritizing my own self-care. One barre workout via the Peloton app (and it was a good, tough workout, but I kept internally pouting that it was not my beloved barre3). And a couple of walks and that trail ride with Nugget, but should have been more. I have ideas about running Greenlake in Seattle this week, so cross your fingers that I find the time!

Blogging. March reading round-up coming for you on Wednesday, and then back to Colorado on Friday. Check in with me then!

Loving. If you’re on Instagram and looking for a little extra gentle wisdom, can I recommend @peacefulmindpeacefullife and @peaceful_barb? Somehow, Barb and her daughter Michelle always know just what to say, and their posts and reels are full of joy and kindness and validation. They’ve recently started a podcast, Barb Knows Best, which I’ve not yet listened to – but it’s on my list.

Asking. What are you reading this week?

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