Bad mood.

I spent the weekend in a bad mood. And I can’t let the bad mood be. I get mad at myself for being in a bad mood, why, why, why when the rest of the world is so screwed up and there are people who are actually suffering that you can’t be content with your contentful life? Then I waste extra energy on it. I can still feel the bad mood this morning. Sigh. I know it’s mostly hormone driven, but you can’t think clearly when everything is irritating you all or making you sad or whatever all the time. I run through all the things I’m supposed to do to make the bad mood go away – go outside, talk to a friend, pretend I’m happy, go for a run, cook, talk to myself like I’m my best friend “it’s ok, Doris, it’s just a bad mood”, do some jumping jacks, gently tell myself when I hear the words – “I suck. I suck. I suck.” that it’s not true. Ahhhh.. grrr. When I get this way, I get needy in a kind of unattractive way. (Is needy ever attractive? No.) I go around the house asking people to give me a pep talk and tell me that I’m doing great. Vince complies, but rolls his eyes.

I gave all the $ that I w(sh)ould have spent on Vince’s college prep stuff to Edda’s special needs program. The class goes out twice a week for the entire year to learn life skills – like grocery shopping or home depot projects or to the post office. The budget for the entire year was $130. For 14 kids! For 50-ish outings! Crazy. So that money went there.

Edda on an outing with her class. Enjoying birthday cake I hear.

College applications are painful. None of us likes it. All of us like the going to college part. The applying part sucks so much. And I hate saying it sucks because, what the hell, Edda is not going to apply to college. She’s stuck at home with needy, moody me. I should be grateful. For Vince going, for us to be able to be able to afford to pay to apply & attend. I suck for not feeling grateful. I get anxious about the deadlines and remind Vince of them daily – you need to get transcripts, you need to get recommendations, where is the essay?, and the supplemental essays?, Jeremy is trying to help out by playing mediator and with the tracking of deadlines, Vince looks at me and is like – do I really have to tell them now what I’m going to study? How do I know now what I want to do later? Who the hell ever knows what they want to do with their life? Do I know what I’m doing (besides trying to encourage you to apply to college by the published deadlines)? I have no idea. Do you ever read a memoir where someone is like – I knew I was going to do this when I was 4 years old and I have not wavered from that goal for 68 years? That person is lucky. The rest of us bumble along and try to figure it out each day like a drunken, walker and as you are trying to figure it out, random things happen, like earthquakes that flatten your house or you meet a beautiful, enchanting person that you can’t take your eyes off of and then you have to change directions completely. I am trying to be grateful. I’m trying to be nice. I have only 10 months left with Vince in the house and I will try not to ruin the past (relatively sane) 17 years with 10 months of bad mothering behavior. Jeremy tells me not to let it go, he tells me to roll with it.

Ten thousand college web pages. And laundry. Always laundry.

We had Sunday night dinner with neighbors and family. I made Lauren’s mom’s famous (well, famous to us) kugel for Rosh Hashanah. The Jews at the table declared it delicious, one of the best kugels they had ever eaten. The rest of us were like – hmmm, a noodle casserole for dessert? sure, I’ll try it. I’ll post the recipe here for my future reference.

New shoots.

My plant started to send out new shoots this past week. I’m not sure why it failed to do this all summer while it was outside and as soon I moved it inside, it was all happy and decided to grow. This is how exciting my week has been.

Relish, Court of Honor, Amy.

My husband loves me so much that he will snag a free bottle of relish for me from his office.

My dad came over for dinner last night. The first thing he wanted to do was to go on our computer to get some BOGO offer from McDonald’s. He had already gotten it on his computer and they wouldn’t let him redeem the offer twice.

My dad and I went to Vince’s Court of Honor where he was the emcee. The court of honor is a quarterly ceremony to give out rank advancement and merit badges. He did a great job! Told two punny stories (I wish I had taken a video, but I had no advanced warning he was going to do what he did) which went over well and got through the entire ceremony in just under 30 minutes. All the parents were grateful as sometimes these can go as long as 90 minutes.

Had lunch with Amy at the Spot in Rockville. Which was not as lively as we thought it was going to be.

omg. Ordering is so complicated these days. To order the drink I had to decide which drink out of 10,000 drinks and then decide: size, sugar level, ice level, and any toppings that I wanted.


I resisted coming home from vacation. I promised myself that I would not think about anything on my to-do list while away and I did a pretty good job with that, but as soon as we were driving home I was not looking forward to being home. Traveling alone with Jeremy is full of the ease that comes from 20 years together, we generally know what the other person likes to do and we can accomodate without realizing what needs adjusting. We can talk or not talk. Do something or do nothing. It’s all good. This kind of travelling is unobtainable with anyone else. Just adding children or parents or friends – no matter how well you know them or how much you love them, travel is just stressful no matter how beautiful the destination (I’ve been grumpy in Europe, at National Parks, perhaps in Hawaii?). Someone wants to sleep in, someone hates the restaurant choice, someone gets sick, someone thinks you are not spending enough money, someone always gets grumpy splitting the check evenly when one person order 2 drinks and an app and all they had was a burger.

We came home to an upset Vince who had a bad time over Homecoming weekend. We talked through the emotional events of the weekend. I remember as a teenager, everything was so earth shattering. I loved so strongly, I hated equally as strongly, I despaired over everything. Now, everything is so muted for me – at least muted compared to what it was like when I was 17. What is there to say to an upset teenager? That we’ve all been there before? Awkward dances? Feeling like you don’t know what to do? Feeling like no one likes you or understands you? Or also the exact opposite, feeling amazing and in love and that no one has ever been in love as much as you are in love right now. All the love songs suddenly make sense!

Thank you Ning & Brian for hanging with Edda this weekend so we could have some time to ourselves. We told them we’d repay the favor when Noah is old enough and they are ready.

I had a challenging (note: I did not say terrible) shift yesterday. I did not stop moving the whole time. At no point was I like – OK, I have a few minutes to sit and chart. I did eat because I now know if I don’t take 15 min to eat, I will end up crying. Highlights:


It’s early Sunday morning and I’m sitting in bed in our windowless hostel room in Ohiopyle, PA. I’m hoping to get this blog post done in 10 min and get on outta here for a run as the sun goes up. We are out of the house for the weekend, just the two of us. Celebrating our 20 & 21st anniversary and our 50th, 51st, 46th and 47th birthdays (we are a little behind). We should have spent an extra $100 and stayed in the motel across the street with windows. I have nothing against this hostel, I don’t mind the shared bathroom (we didn’t share the bedroom), but I do mind not having a window only because I’m sure I’ll die a trapped, fiery death – but I didn’t so I guess it’s fine to have it be pitch black to sleep well (which we did only 50% of the time. We each had one good night of sleep and one bad night of sleep though we went to sleep at the luxurious hour of 9pm. A true vacation. lol.) We went to Ohiopyle because of a bunch of Frank Llyod Wright houses and because of good biking/running/hiking.

On Friday, Jeremy started early from the house and rode 100 miles towards PA. I stayed at home and saw everyone off to school and did a bunch of small errands (including trying to try out a Peloton treadmill for a friend because she wanted to know if it was as good as a Woodway which is the treadmill I love to run on at the gym (both the Peloton and Woodway are slatted treadmills instead of the regular belt treadmill) – I almost always can run on the single Woodway at the gym because no one cares about cardio at the climbing gym and I also wanted to try out the Peloton streaming class service, but I went to the Mall instead of the Row so I failed at this mission). I drove up to the meeting place about an hour away from DC (the whole time I’m driving, I’m like – I cannot believe that Jeremy is biking this far. It’s unbelievable.).

We met up and then went to McDonald’s for lunch and headed to Polymath Park, the first Wright destination. People are crazy, moving houses from really far away to this property. They try to save Wright houses from being razed. And then they raise them here in PA. We had dinner there as well.

Then we went to Ohiopyle. I didn’t realize that it was such a water sport area, I had only packed for architectural touring and running and eating. We thought about booking a Sat morning guided boat adventure, but I had only one pair of skinny jeans and running shorts and Dansko clogs. Next time. For sure next time!

Gorgeous weekend. Lots of biking. A bit of running. Now it’s Sunday morning, Jeremy left early this am to ride about 100 miles back to MD. I’m going to go for a run and then meet up with him somewhere. He sent me a pinned location on Google maps.

Meanwhile at the home front, Vince is going/went to homecoming. The BOMS (boy poms) performed at the pep rally on Friday afternoon.

Steak, toga, beer.

My father is home alone without my mother for about a month until she comes back from the West Coast. I let him borrow Maxi for a few days. I texted a little while ago to see how Max is doing and I got this text back. Apparently Max is eating steak and McDonald’s. She is never going to want to come back home.

Maxi is enjoying being retired.

It is spirit week in RM, homecoming is this weekend. Vince is performing at the pep rally in the all-male dance pom squad. That should be fun, they are practicing on the field today. Each day this week was a different theme. I found a white sheet for toga day.

Ripping out the elastic.
Watching youtube videos about how to tie a toga.

There is a date for homecoming dance. Vince went out and bought an outfit (at Macy’s! on sale!) and had Jeremy tie the tie for him.

Father/son ritual

We are going to miss the whole ritual on Saturday night. We arranged for childcare for Edda months ago for this weekend to celebrate all the cancelled celebrations from last year (50th birthday for Jeremy, our 20th wedding anniversary, my birthday) and this year (where we spent both our birthdays at Costco) – way before Vince managed to find a lovely girl to agree to go with him to homecoming. Actually homecoming was never even on our radar as Vince had never expressed an interest in going. But then, something happened and he was interested. It crossed my mind to cancel the trip because this would be Vince’s first and only homecoming, but I had cancelled so many things last year when I was learning to be a nurse, I just couldn’t really cancel this trip.

Completed look.

We went out to support Julie P-C at our local micro-brewery last night.


Started figuring out college applications. I think we’ve opened like 7 new online accounts. And I had to go to youtube videos to figure out how to link the accounts to ask for transcripts. It’s like a 2nd (or 3rd) part time job. Jeremy texted this photo about the MIT Media Lab. hahahahaha. I’m getting emails from MIT every three days apologizing over and over again for taking that money. As if money only ever comes from goodness.

Birthday wrinkles, Cooking for scouts

Last week was a doozy. I felt like everything was overwhelming and that I couldn’t possibly keep up. When I get overwhelmed and then a little cloud settles on my brain, then the rate at which I get anything done slows down and it reinforces my perception that I can’t possibly get everything done that I want to get done. I’m too overcommitted & the family is too overscheduled. Sometimes I try harder to get at it, but often what needs to happen is to take a nap and not fight it. To let the mood move through you. But sometimes I need to not mope in bed and get out of bed and get moving again. It’s a tricky thing. And as Vickey says, it all gets done in the end somehow. And it does.

Was it because I turned 47 on Saturday? I don’t really think so. I had a very nice weekend and today, Monday morning, I feel good. We had so many dinner guests this past week, so when Jeremy heard that there was to be only three of us (Vince was out) on Friday night, he said – let’s go out, we’ll celebrate early. And we went to Founding Farmers, and although I didn’t think it was going to be anything extraordinary, we had a great time. Edda ate well (she’s been having trouble eating recently. It’s almost as if she’d forgotten she was hungry. She would take many minutes to decide to take a bite of food (even her very favorites, sweets and fruits, took a long time) and then she would hold the food in her mouth – like a chipmunk. This is not like her. For a Rett girl, she eats happily and well and competently. I was worried, maybe she had suffered a concussion in her fall on the first day of school and forgotten how to eat.) We had, what seemed like, a seven course dinner, including two courses of dessert.

Happy Edda.

Saturday, I had a very nice birthday run in which I started early before it got warm and I paced perfectly so I felt strong through to the end. A wonderful birthday gift to myself. Then I admired all the wrinkles which have taken me 47 years to make. Generally, I’m OK with the grey and the wrinkles. We’ll see what happens. I can change my mind, though I think my inner cheapness will always win out on my outer beauty.

Surprised wrinkles!
Concerned wrinkles!
This is a good one.

I did spend the afternoon of my birthday in a mild funk, but then we went to Costco and Jeremy made me a wonderful birthday dinner. A roast, a salad with candied walnuts.

I look so much like my mother these days.

Only one candle.

Vince’s big Eagle Scout project was this weekend as well. Three meals for 65 people each at the local homeless shelter. Dinner on Sunday night and then delivery of breakfast and lunch for Monday.

Costco run.

They used the church’s kitchen. Please admire the hair nets which took me consulting 4 friends, asking at the Ulta store and running around to three different places to procure them the morning of the cooking. Though Jeremy help drive the kids around, he stayed out of the kitchen and Vince coordinated all the cooking. Chicken for dinner, pancakes for breakfast and sandwiches for lunch. Jeremy called me and said, Vince brought no papers, no recipes, no notes. Sigh. But it all got done somehow.

Sandwich line.
Overseeing the project.
Chicken out of the oven.

Delivery at the shelter.


And the handshake. Well done.

And my father is back in town – hello to Edda.