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Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Not Much Is New Here

This post is going to be very similar to the emails I send my mom and brother Ryan every weekday morning: Not much is new here.

Things really have gotten quieter since the chagim ended. We've had a couple of extra events to attend at our synagogue, including an introduction to the library and open house programs for Hannah, as well as a Sisterhood event I attended where I had a genuinely good time making fun of shoes with Stephanie and Jenny. We had a fun dinner at our house with Tarr family - their girls have grown so much, and our kids seem to really love them - and a fun playdate with the Hebert family. Anais and Max are both just a couple months older than Hannah and our Max, and I love catching up and comparing their progress with Rana.

But we've also had some good downtime as well - taking Hannah to buy new shoes, spending a whole rainy Sunday at home with Max, Marc and Hannah catching a movie. The downtime is really necessary. Hannah's getting so tired out by school, and Max is so close to two that the terribleness is already raging, causing lots of cranky "I can't tell you what I want!" moments from him.

This weekend will be pretty full though - lots of Halloween activities and a visit with Rachel, Jon, Nate and Evie. And Thanksgiving will be here soon enough - I'm getting really excited for our drive out to Ohio!

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

It's My Birthday

And I really don't have much to say beyond that, but I felt like I should post something, you know?

32 isn't very momentous, though I wonder if I'll ever get over the feeling that I'm usually the youngest person in the room. Marc keeps telling me it's just not true, and I rationally know that it's not always true, but I guess my self-perception needs to catch up a bit.

Hannah had a teary episode over not really having a gift for me, and Marc laughed that I gave a very "mommy" response saying something like all I need is to know that she loves me. This morning, when Max saw fit to wake us up at 5 am, Marc told him it's my birthday. Max enthusiastically replied "CAKE!" At least someone's excited!

Tuesday, October 13, 2009

Chagim Come and Gone

The last of the holidays has ended, and I personally couldn't be more relieved. But more on that in a moment.

Last weekend was Simchat Torah. Before those festivities began, we decided to try out the Topsfield Fair, the oldest agricultural fair in the country. We got there early and had great luck with the satellite parking. Hannah enjoyed some of the rides, and Marc got a new vegetable peeler, but really, I think we're not fair people. Or at least we're not fair people right now, with a toddler in tow, a bad back, and lots of food issues to manage. Plus it was crowded and chilly, and difficult to see any animals. But we went, and now we know.

That evening we went to synagogue for Hannah's Kabbalat Panim, or consecration ceremony as we called it growing up. Fillis and John joined us for dinner first, and Julie met us at synagogue. The ceremony was cute - Hannah looked so proud saying the Shema with her classmates - and seeing her receive the small Torah was very moving. I whispered to her how proud I was, and snuck in a little "I hope that someday your kids will do something like this." I think that may have been the basis for a long conversation Marc and I had with her later that evening, which covered everything from the story of creation to how babies are made to who you should make them with. It was a nice night, and we all had fun dancing during the hakafot. Max really liked waving the flags, and thankfully no one lost an eye.

Sunday we went back to synagogue for more hakafot, and then later that day we had a really nice time having dinner with the Hicks family. They'd also just been to the fair, so it was fun to compare notes, and good to get to know them all better!

But now the chagim are over, and I couldn't be more relieved. It was nice that everything fell on a weekend this year - usually I miss out on some of it since it'll fall on a week day. But it was exhausting to have every weekend taken up by lots of events to attend. I've enjoyed celebrating, but I need time to get the laundry done and go through the mail, and maybe to watch some Oprah. So while we've still got lots scheduled on the calendar in the next few weeks, we're definitely going to schedule in some time to relax too. Hope you all enjoyed the last few weeks!

Thursday, October 8, 2009

Sukkot

After getting the sukkah built with our wonderful helpers, and a crazy week with some unexpected turns (the biggest being getting a new roof on the house), we somehow got it all together and had a nice Shabbat dinner in our decorated sukkah. Marc and I marveled that it even happened, given the lack of a weekend between Yom Kippur and the start of Sukkot. Just crazy.

And beyond that, we threw a party the next day. This year we invited a bunch of our friends from the Tot Shabbat crew at our synagogue, and it was wonderful to finally have an excuse to invite everyone over. Unfortunately, the weather didn't cooperate, but we did get about an hour's break in the rain so that everyone could spend a bit of time in the sukkah, and the kids enjoyed climbing all over the swingset. It was a fun afternoon, and best of all, not much in leftovers.

We also spent some time in the Gonzalez's sukkah on Sunday, and have tried to eat dinner in ours all week too. Tonight for the final meal we're having Julie and Mike come join us. It's been a very hectic holiday, but it's nice to blend this observance in with everything else we've had going on!

Just one weekend of holidays left - Simchat Torah. It should be a good one!

Thursday, October 1, 2009

Clean Up, Clean Up, Everybody Everywhere!

Just like the start of yesterday's post, if you know me well, you know I can't stand disorganization and clutter. I HAVE to clean the dishes, put away errant toys, and hang up the jackets or I have a very hard time relaxing. Just keeping up with the day-to-day in our household can feel like trying to hold back the tide - nearly impossible. But when the house is neat (not spotlessly clean, just neat) and the laundry is done, I can actually feel the weight removed from my shoulders.

Unfortunately, for all the time spent sweeping back the fray, there isn't a ton of time left for the bigger projects out there. You know what I mean - cleaning the refrigerator, sorting out too small/wrong season clothes, or in today's case, cleaning out our back porch. We have a small room out the back door of our kitchen that isn't very livable, and thus becomes a dumping ground for all sorts of things. For last year's sukkah party, we cleaned it up and hid a section of the room behind a tarp to conceal all of the things we just didn't have room to put someplace else.

Well, it's been a year, and we just went behind that tarp for the first time this week! I guess there isn't much there that we actually need...at all. But, given time constraints, there's no way we can get through all of it right now. So I got up extra early today (also known as "when Max was still sleeping so as not to disrupt me") and straightened it up, and re-concealing the area again. Marc and I have made a goal of cleaning the space up before next Sukkot, and I'm sure if we can do it bit by bit we'll get it done.

But I do need to swap out the kid's summer clothes...and the refrigerator is pretty yucky from an exploding can of soda...Sigh.