Monday, July 23, 2018

When Dada’s Away, The Cats Will Play

Mal was away at a conference all last week, so it was just Quinn and me flying solo. We had a grand ol’ time, and I’m so glad we were able to have some quality time together – just the two of us. I know it’s so clique to say, but kids really do grow up so fast.

Quinn and I had some really sweet moments together throughout the week, so I wanted to document them on CNC. These moments pass so quickly (and I have the worst memory), so I want to remember them in the future. Maybe they’re not “blog worthy,” but they mean a lot to me. And, hey, if you have kids too, maybe you’ll agree that they’re worth remembering! 🙂

Typically, in the morning, Mal and I divide and conquer the kid/pug responsibilities, but since we was away, Quinn and I walked Murphy together. Most mornings, everyone got along just fine.

Other mornings, included a whole lot of frustration and whining. Oy. Quinn and Murphy are each other’s best friends and moral enemies.

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One day, Quinn and I went to the beach with some friends. We had a great time playing in the sand and tide pools, eating snacks, and using our excavators.

Unfortunately, leaving the beach was a whole different story. Our car got stuck in the sand… like, really stuck. One of the beach rangers (I think that’s what they’re called) came to our rescue, and we tried everything to get us out – pushing the car, shoveling sand, car mats, and even planks of wood.

Eventually, a nice gentleman offered to pull us out with a strap. Thank goodness! We got out, no problem, but I had to drive backwards down the rest of the beach and over the overpass. THAT was fun! Quinn, meanwhile, was strapped into his car seat, eating cheesy crackers, and enjoying the show unfold! 🙂

Back at home, we took Murphy for a long walk around the neighborhood. We were probably a good 3/4 mile from home when the skies opened up and it started to POUR rain. Holy cow, we were WET when we got home, but it was a fun adventure for us. Well, Quinn and I had fun… the pug was not as thrilled to be soaking wet.

One night – actually, a couple nights – we built blanket forts, watched TV, and ate Quinn popcorn (obviously).

Every night, we read bedtime books together in Mumma and Dada’s bed. We usually read them in Quinn’s room, but it was a special treat to climb into our bed and get all cozy together.

One night, when we were pretending to be cats, I said to Quinn, “No sharp claws, just soft paws,” and he completely lost it – hysterically laughing at the statement. He thought it was the funniest thing ever, so it’s become a running joke between the two of us.

Speaking of cats, we visited Hornstra Farms after school one day. We visited the baby cows, and Quinn was reunited with his cat friend, Bootsy. It’s funny – just about every time we visit Hornstra, the cat somehow finds us to say hi.

After our visit to Hornstra, we ate dinner and then enjoyed ice cream sundaes for dessert. Quinn may or may not have served himself a couple of spoonfuls of sprinkles right from the jar. I mean, I don’t blame him. Isn’t that what we all want to do with sprinkles?

One afternoon, Quinn helped me with a home organization project. He had a bookshelf in his playroom that was not being well-utilized, so we moved it upstairs into his bedroom to better contain the book situation, which was getting a bit out of control.

Check out our “after” photo – so much better! Quinn even helped me dust and carry the books from downstairs upstairs.

And, of course, no week would be complete without a trip to Target to look at the toys. We even snapped a few photos of Quinn’s favorites to send to Santa – and he was really into it! 🙂

Even though Quinn and I had a wonderful solo week together, we’re glad Dada is home. We missed him and his ridiculousness! 🙂



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Dear Mark: Supplement Q and A

Weekend Of Ds

Donuts, Dogs, Decor, Dinner, Dirt, Date

We had a break in the heat this weekend, and dare I say I was even chilly on Saturday night?!

I brought all my swim stuff to camp pickup but Mazen said he just wanted to go home and snuggle on the couch. Fine with me! I laid down and he inserted himself and his bowl of pretzels in the most convenient places :mrgreen:

We made this Blue Apron meal for dinner – Ras el Hanout Chicken with Farro Salad and Cucumber-Yogurt Sauce. It was amazing!! Loved the figs in the farro, the cucumber yogurt, and the spices on the chicken, which Thomas grilled. Adding it to our remake list.

His legs are almost as long as mine!!!

On Saturday morning I surprised Mazen with a trip to our new Sugar Shack Donuts!! The donut shop started in Richmond and now has a dozen stores across Virginia and DC.

I loved how many flavors they offered! The only ones missing were the jelly and cream filled. When I was younger (still am – hahaha!) my family used to get donuts from a shop in Kure Beach, NC on every visit. They were the best donuts in the world, and so far nothing has compared to the yeasty sugar-coated raspberry filled donut I used to love.

But these were very good! We cut them into quarters and had a taste of all the flavors (with some leftovers that we nibbled through on Sunday!)

I also had a scrambled egg and a few pear slices to balance out breakfast, which actually kept me full until 2pm!

In the meantime, we went to the Monticello Trail for a kid and dog hike.

Our friends have a new puppy, Tucker, who was dying to meet Gus! Isn’t he the most handsome puppy? He’s a golden retriever and growing fast.

I have to say that Gus played it pretty cool. Teenagers.

Sarah and I hiked up to the overlook with the three kids. At one point she was pushing close to 150 lbs uphill! These 6-year-olds are smart – they realize how convenient a stroller is for relaxing. If only toddlers would be so agreeable! When Sylvia was a toddler her mother had to carry her up the hill and push the stroller empty because she hated it so much : )

Those donuts really kept me full for hours! For lunch I had a No Bull Burger (minus the bun because we didn’t have any form of bread in the house) with heirloom tomato, pickle, romaine, and dill havarti.

We played some Legos before Mazen went over to Matt’s for the night.

T and I started on some nursery prep. He fixed the ceiling, which had some water damage from a furnace leak. I’m always amazed that he knows how to Mr. Fixit everything!

He also mulched the front yard. Black mulch FTW!

I spent time moving office stuff downstairs and making the left side of the nursery more baby friendly.

As I’ve mentioned before, Baby B will probably sleep in our room for 6 months (maybe a year?) – we’re not sure. But he won’t be sleeping in the nursery much at all in the first few months since it’s on a different floor as our master bedroom. I do want to go ahead and move the desk out and eventually get the crib and twin bed set up in here, so that’s what we’re working towards. But I don’t feel any pressure to make a Pinterst-perfect nursery at this point. I do think we’ll use the room for diaper changes and storage clothing and gear, so it needs to be 75% ready to go this fall.

This is the Blythe dresser from Pottery Barn that I bought a few years ago (before life went sideways). I love that it has a removable changing topper so it can be a regular dresser in the years to come. The topper was removed while it was office storage, and I put it back on yesterday!

Thomas and I went out on a date for dinner. We were waffling around trying to choose a restaurant and I suddenly realized: we need to cherish these days!! A year from now we will look back fondly on the days when we were undecided on where to go for dinner on a totally free night! Ahhh!

We ended up at Oak Hart Social, which was such a great choice!! Best meal of the summer so far. We sat outside in the cool air and I had the most amazing mocktail! Our server asked me the kind of flavors I like and I said “Tart citrus, maybe some bitters, up.” I never asked what the bartender mixed up, but I think it was a combination of lemon/lime juice with lavender syrup (just a touch) and some fresh strawberry (muddled or puree?!) It tasted like rosé!

We ordered all three specials on the menu starting with this heirloom tomato and nectarine salad dotted with blue cheese and a hazelnut crunch. It was epic!

We shared the cornmeal fried catfish with grilled okra, more summer tomatoes, boiled peanuts, fresh corn, a yummy sauce, herbs, and the best part – pickled (?) strawberries!! It was SO GOOD!

For our third and final course (and kind of T’s entree) we got the special pizza. I don’t even remember what was on this (yellow jalapenos, pork belly, okra?) but it was very good. I could only hold one piece!

Such a great meal. My favorite kind of menu is when restsaurants take fresh, seasonal ingredients and do really creative and unpected things with them, and this meal was exactly that.

We came home to watch a few episodes of The Crown. I got a little bored with it again, but now it’s picking up the pace. I think we’re on season 2 now.

Sunday was chill: a workout, housework, cloudy skies, and a movie with Mazen!

Hope you guys had a lovely weekend.

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