life Reading

5 on a Friday

May 17, 2019

1-    I turn 39 on Monday. Um, yay? My SIL sent me the best gift:

Orla Kiely coloring book – excuse me, colouring book
AND colored (coloured) pencils!

Totally unnecessary but man, what a fun surprise in the mail yesterday!

2- My parents are visiting! I’ve been working, but I still think it’s been fun for them. And the kids have been mostly well-behaved. Josh is on call this weekend, and it will be nice not to have to go it alone for once!

3- POLITICS. This is not a political blog and I’d like to keep it that way, but it’s probably pretty evident which way I lean. That said, I am finding myself getting sucked into a lot of the drama with zero action on my part. I need to commit to a better plan of action (regular and thoughtful donations probably being the best thing I can do) and I also need to prune my Instagram feed. It’s starting to look like the way Facebook was headed before I left (in January 2016).

4- The Summer Reading Guide is out from Anne Bogel! I’m hoping it’s the kick in the pants I need to get my reading butt back in gear (I also just downloaded one of your recs — and am keeping the rest on a list for future reference!).

I do love sweeping family sagas!

I know many of you feel like I should stop worrying about time ‘wasted’ on social media, but I feel like the answer is probably to crowd it out with other (fun) things. Like reading. I am going to focus on this in Q3 (my summer quintile!)

5-     Toddler preschool thoughts. I signed G up for school next fall (a Montessori program, mornings only) but now I’m sort of second guessing this. I’m worried her drop-off is going to add unnecessary morning rush and that she’s not going to tolerate the separation. She’ll be 20 months. I’ve never had a kid NOT in any sort of school/social program at that age, though. And they have a pool with swim lessons offered (convenient!).

Happy Friday. Even though May is a special month (Mother’s Day! My birthday! Anniversary! End of school year celebrations!) – I’m sort of desperate for June when my career transition occurs and my work schedule better reflects my responsibilities. ONWARD!


  • Reply Julia May 17, 2019 at 9:07 am

    Are you unfollowing to stay away from people that post opinions on any political/current events topics or just those that you disagree with?

    I ask because I felt bad about not being able to “hear” the other side, but I also find it utterly depressing to see how these battle lines are getting drawn.

    I used to never unfollow friends on fbook, but I find it difficult to listen/read about those that oppose gun control, abortion, science, etc and I am unfollowing them, even though I never respond to any of their posts to being with.

    I have about 10 people that I follow that are posting about politics, but I enjoy hearing their perspective, although they are all progressives.

    • Reply Sarah Hart-Unger May 17, 2019 at 9:29 am

      No, I’m unfollowing all of it because it quickly takes over the whole feed and all the sudden my little happiness booster is a source of stress and anxiety.

  • Reply Beth May 17, 2019 at 10:45 am

    Ooo I have Orla Kiely folders similar to the coloring book. I love them! And happy bday. I just turned 38 and…meh? I’m trying to maintain my love of birthdays as I get older which is not especially easy!

    I do think the political stuff is interesting. I tend to ignore it but now I wonder if I need to pay a little more attention so i know what’s happening on issues that matter to me. I like your idea of some targeted contributions/supporting specific candidates or causes/etc so you are doing something but not seeing it every day.

  • Reply A May 17, 2019 at 11:31 am

    Curious to hear your (and other readers) thoughts on preschool between ages 2-3. Growing up most people I knew didn’t start until 3, but it seems like lots of 2 year olds are in some type of program now?? I know nothing about this. We have a great babysitter and likely will have to move around the time my child turns 3, so I’m hesitant to change up a good situation before such a big transition….. you similarly seem to love your nanny so curious about the consideration of preschool at 20 months. Tell me more!

  • Reply Theresa Co May 17, 2019 at 12:59 pm

    Since you brought it up, since you have a nanny at home, no need to rush a toddler into school. She’ll learn plenty on her own exploring at her leisure and interacting with the many people already in her life. Not to mention parks and the like. This is just an anecdote, but my one and only child didn’t start any type of school until she started TK at age 4 1/2. She was ready for school when she went. No crying. And she has always done well in all respects: academically, socially, behaviorally, etc. My two cents 🙂 (or maybe it’s worth less than that ha!ha!)

    • Reply Megan May 19, 2019 at 7:06 pm

      I feel like my son is getting a LOT more out of daycare/school now (he’s 2 and 9 months). I think from maybe 28/30 months was when it really started to kick in and he liked going a LOT more rather than being a bit bewildered when we left him there. Can you keep G home with your nanny for another 6 months? After 2 they just understand so much more and I think that makes the separation easier.

  • Reply rose May 17, 2019 at 1:31 pm

    Consider why you felt your other 2 did well with ‘school’ at that age but you are fretting about this 3rd child. Does she have ‘issues’ the older ones did not? Really looking at your concern will either clarify why she ought not go, or that she will be fine and your concern is misplacing some other emotion on your part.
    Not ‘voting’ or second guessing you; every family and every child has different needs at different ages and individualized decisions about individual situations need recognition. Could it be a consequence of moving so a different place than your first 2 attended?

    • Reply SHU May 17, 2019 at 2:04 pm

      Great questions – no issues. BUT – with A, she was never NOT in school. I felt it just made sense esp b/c I had a baby on the way and I wanted her to have her own thing.

      C I sent 3 mornings/week initially, but they don’t have a 3 day option for G. Plus, with C I liked that I was sending him to be where A was. There was nothing inconvenient about it. I have no idea if it benefitted him in any way, but there were no logistical negatives.

      With G, it’s going to be a mild to moderate pain in the butt doing the drop off (and I envision her crying every morning) so I feel like I need to justify it. I feel like she gets plenty of socialization/commotion when the others are around. That said, she might love school. maybe the answer is to send her and see what it’s like knowing I can always pull her out . . .

  • Reply Bridget May 17, 2019 at 1:59 pm

    Last fall we had to decide preschool vs a new nanny for our just 24 month old since our first nanny got a full time job (we had her 3 days/week). We went with preschool because I was expecting our second child this spring and thought it would be nice to have some routine/childcare during maternity leave (no family nearby). The winter was sort of brutal-all the usual sicknesses/constant colds/GI bugs/missed work that we had to take off. now I’m on the other side of maternity leave and it has been nice to have a little break 3 days/week for the morning and “just” have the baby. The alternative would have been to get a short term nanny and then balance the transition from 1>2 solo and hire someone after 2 stacked parent leaves (~6 months). All this to say, I don’t think you can go wrong either way, but the sicknesses were totally brutal and if you already have help I would probably wait until almost 3-she gets a lot of social exposure from the big kids!

  • Reply Emily May 17, 2019 at 4:34 pm

    I had similar feelings when I enrolled my younger 2 at 13 months-it has added work (especially the lunch packing as their school is 9-2:30). But they LOVE it and I do think it has helped with socialization, speech etc.(and they also have 2 older siblings at home). They cried the first week and now slam the door in my face when they enter 🙂 Long way of saying-send her if its not too much of a burden! It has also freed up our nanny to help with errands and chores the days that all 4 are in school.

  • Reply Margaret May 17, 2019 at 9:16 pm

    Why do you think G will cry? I think sometimes toddlers feel their caregivers emotions so if you’re nervous so will she! My kiddo started at 10months in the daycare facility where she has now transitioned to the preschool room. She is a total social butterfly and I can count on one hand the number of crying drop offs. So I would say don’t assume she’ll cry, maybe she’ll be a social butterfly. AND remember nothing is forever. Didn’t you just talk about when to quit an activity on a recent BOBW podcast? Try it and if it doesn’t work for her after a while, quit!

    • Reply Sarah Hart-Unger May 18, 2019 at 7:50 am

      Great points! I think she’s a little prone to separation crying but maybe she’ll love the environment. I think I am leaning towards just that – try it and see!!

  • Reply Anne May 18, 2019 at 7:39 am

    My son started Montessori school 4 days a week, 8h30-16h around 2 years old, and it was all positive. He became clean almost instantly, his language exploded, he learned to dress himself, etc. A lot of autonomy and time to spend playing outside, rain or shine, which made him very happy.

    • Reply Sarah Hart-Unger May 18, 2019 at 7:51 am

      Great to know! And this program is similar, very traditional Montessori (they even train teachers for other schools there). I do love the concept and this particular school! She just seems so young. But I guess she’ll be 2 4 months after starting …

  • Reply Caitlin Rollins May 19, 2019 at 12:55 am

    I will go the other route and say – keep life simpler for you. We have the same nanny and older kid situation. My son is the exact same age, and we debated but are leaning on waiting a year. They’ll still get three years before kindergarten which is more than enough, and she can do some music or other gym class stuff with the nanny. In general people have suggested 2 days at 2, 3 at 3 etc. since that’s not available, it’s pretty easy to create something similar with local classes. No wrong decisions here just saying prioritize your own simplicity.

  • Reply Emily May 20, 2019 at 5:13 am

    I agree, I would minimize complicated logistics at this point. I’ve never had a nanny and so my kids were in daycare/preschool since they were infants but it seems to me that one of the best perks of having a nanny is getting to avoid the dropoff craziness. She’ll have plenty of preschool before kindergarten without starting at 20 months. Plus it seems like socialization isn’t a huge concern because she’s still so young and also has two active older siblings!

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