It’s Monday! What Are You Reading? (May 9, 2022)

Good morning, friends! Happy Mother’s Day – belated – to all of those who celebrate; major thanks and gratitude to the moms, mom-adjacent, expectant moms, mothers-in-law, aunts, grandmothers, mentors, teachers, and beloved women everywhere; and hugs to anyone for whom yesterday was a hard day. I love you all.

Flexibility is a mom superpower and flexibility was definitely required of me this weekend. My parents arrived on Friday (as I was still warming up after chaperoning a zoo field trip in the pouring rain), planning to crash at my place for a couple of days en route to vacation in the Outer Banks. They were stoked to watch Nugget play baseball, but unfortunately they didn’t get to: RAINOUT. Seriously, it poured for two days straight. So, no Saturday hike and no baseball – major bummer. We made the best of it, though: when outdoor nature fun isn’t an option, the Air & Space Museum (especially the giant hangar out at Dulles) is the next best thing, so that’s where we went. My dad especially loves it there, and he could happily visit every time, so he was in his element. But, really, we all were – it’s such a fun spot.

On Sunday, I woke up early to voices in my kitchen: Dan and Danielle, who flew through the night and landed at Dulles at 5:00 a.m. (woof). They’re joining my parents on vacation, but sadly we’re missing out on the fun this time – the school schedule reigns supreme around here and we have another month to go. My parents and Dan and Danielle pulled out of my driveway around 7:15, and we rolled out not long after, bound for a hike at Huntley Meadows, one of our favorite parks from our days as Alexandrians. The park definitely delivered: hooded merganser babies! (Steve nicknamed them “mohawk ducks”), eastern kingbirds, barn swallows, tree swallows, and more – a very happy Mother’s Day treat for this bird nerd. The rest of the day I spent puttering around the garden, finally getting the rest of my pots cleaned out and planted (I’m growing pole beans, cherry tomatoes, three pots of strawberries, a raspberry bush, and lots of herbs – we’ll see if anything survives the hot sun and ravenous squirrels) and checking out a Puerto Rico scenic ride on my Peloton. Finished with sushi and TV – not a bad way to end a rainy and cold May weekend. (Now I’ve had enough of spring: summer, please feel free to join us anytime.)

Reading. It’s been a slow reading week. I finished The Blessing on Monday, and hooted my way through it, especially the last chapter – but then the pace ground to a halt. I picked up The Song of the Lark by Willa Cather (from my Classics Club list) and have been reading through it all week, very slowly. Some of that slow pace is due to a busy workweek and a field trip and entertaining my parents, no doubt, but it also just seems to be a book that wants to be read slowly. I’m really enjoying it, just meandering through.

Watching. A little of this and a little of that. Some Gardener’s World, and on Sunday Nugget and I curled up with popcorn and Rock the Park for a little while, which was delightful.

Listening. Fittingly for a week that included Mother’s Day, I’m still working my way through my backlist episodes of The Mom Hour. I’m down to 42 unplayed episodes, which may seem like a lot, but I started with over sixty, so progress is happening here.

Making. No question, the best thing I made all week was this tidy garden! (Ignore the rainforest around the frog pond, that’s not part of it you guys.) Eight pots, with herbs, veggies and fruit – all clean and tidy. I cleaned up the herbs that have overwintered (out of frame to the left), pruned some yellow leaves from the tomato seedlings, and replaced the rootbound, weedy soil in the rest of the pots with a mix of organic potting soil and mushroom compost, then planted the fruit and herbs and watered everything in with a mix of rainwater (we had plenty!) and organic liquid plant food. If that doesn’t help my garden grow, I don’t know what will.

Moving. Lots of Peloton this week! Several core strength classes (I’m working my way through the “Crush Your Core” program with Emma Lovewell) and a good mix of rides – a tough intervals and arms workout (Emma Lovewell again), a low impact recovery day with Jenn Sherman, a scenic Puerto Rico ride to Latin music, and “XOXO, Cody” with my pal Amanda. It was all great, of course, but Cody was the obvious highlight. I need to get back out on the roads, though – my running shoes are getting jealous.

Blogging. Speaking of the Classics Club Challenge, I have a review for you on Wednesday, and the penultimate Colorado and Utah travel post on Friday. Check in with me then!

Loving. Between rain, schedule shifts, and more sickness in the house (Peanut again – we think she’s been taking her mask off at school because Dr. Nugget Fauci, who wears his religiously, is getting sick about a quarter of the amount she is) – it could have been a gloomy Mother’s Day. But Steve made sure I was spoiled with a hike, sushi, and presents; ran kiddo interference all day so the rugrats didn’t bicker and stress me out; and just generally made me feel loved and spoiled.

Asking. What are you reading this week?

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