COVID19 Weekend

Day 84: Consumption

June 7, 2020

Yesterday I got everything done on my list except nap! Oh well. Aside from melting down at 9:30 pm when I desperately wanted to be in bed and all 3 kids were still up, it was still a good day.

Thinking about . . . consumption. Not consumptions of food (though choices made in that realm are important too). But consumption of words. Media. Yesterday I consumed:

  • About 30 pages of A Gentleman In Moscow
  • A bunch of random emails (work + non-work)
  • Several blog posts (though not many on a Saturday!)
  • Several podcast episodes: Up First (news), Planet Money (on police unions), First Name Basis (talking to kids about racism), The Mom Hour (plans for summer), Organize365 (time management)
  • Tchaikovsky. YES this is what I set my Spotify playlist to while I was reading Amor Towles. It seemed to fit.
  • A bunch of random Instagram feeds, many sharing news and resources around Black Lives Matter. And yes, I fell down a rabbit hole reading several comment threads on various brands’ responses last week.

Anyway. That list isn’t terrible and I enjoyed finding some new voices to follow BUT it just made me think about intention. I didn’t exactly set out to read / listen to the above (especially the Insta rabbit hole); it all just came to me. I don’t want to stumble into my media consumption choices because it’s exactly that — a choice.

Time spent looking at one thing is time spent not looking at something else.


  • BB Day #20 (yay! Then I will be 25% through 80 Days!)
  • Order some workbooks for kids to try
  • Get kids outside early again (you would think the same neighborhood routes would be getting really old by now but it actually hasn’t been that bad) + maybe pool in afternoon if no lightning
  • Bake cupcakes w/ kids (we have been watching a lot of baking shows and they are begging to do this!). Maybe these.
  • Read more of Gentleman
  • ADD PIX TO ALBUM FOR LAST 3 MONTHS OF 2019 PHOTOBOOK! (then I actually have to put it together but I use the auto feature and then just edit so this part isn’t as bad).
  • Nap. Maybe.
Take Out Night: BBQ from Shorty’s
Annabel’s “flower that looks like a butterfly” that she wanted to share


  • Reply Rachel June 7, 2020 at 7:47 am

    Thank you for sharing! How did you cope with all three kids at 9:30?? I have a 3 year old and she would be melting down! G

  • Reply Grateful Kae June 7, 2020 at 8:25 am

    “Intention” was my word of the year for 2020. I’m not sure I’ve been completely successful, but I have been thinking about and trying to live every aspect of my life more “intentionally” this year. 🙂

  • Reply Anna June 7, 2020 at 8:31 am

    Sarah – I really think you need to question a close relationship/partnership with someone who does not seem to share your views regarding antiracism. And is unwilling to take a firmer stance on their platform on these issues. It reflects poorly on you to continue to be affiliated with this person. I think you genuinely do care about these issues and about doing good in the world.

    • Reply KLB June 7, 2020 at 11:16 am

      Can we be clear here? Are you really saying that you think Laura Vanderkam is a racist? Or just not anti-racist? Why does every single thing have to focus in on this one issue when there are so very many other things wrong in the world that do not get as much media coverage?

      • Reply Omdg June 7, 2020 at 3:21 pm

        Racism is not a dichotomy. One is not either racist or not racist. However I do believe an important part of moving dialogue forward toward ending police brutality, racial profiling, and poverty, is to be open to feedback that may not always be pleasant to hear. If one is so sensitive that one cannot even tolerate being told that maybe something they have said or done, or someone they personally support is seen or may be construed as racist or racist-adjacent without becoming defensive, then that is part of the problem. And personally, I am proud to be seen as off-putting or abrasive to someone who holds those views.

      • Reply Tristan June 8, 2020 at 9:52 am

        Do you do quarterly photo books instead of yearly ones? That seems much more manageable!

        • Reply Sarah Hart-Unger June 8, 2020 at 12:28 pm

          I do yearly but I made myself pick the photos one quarter at a time to make it less daunting.

        • Reply Marcia (OrganisingQueen) June 9, 2020 at 10:03 am

          I do project life in a mini album and it is even MORE doable. I print about 6 – 8 pictures every month and because I do it monthly, I never feel more than a month behind. That sense of mental peace is priceless to me and I don’t think I’ll ever go back to an annual photobook project again.

    • Reply Jen June 7, 2020 at 12:21 pm

      I think you should be more clear in what you are trying to insinuate and why.

    • Reply Sarah Hart-Unger June 8, 2020 at 6:31 am

      Just wrote a similar response to Kirsten above — I agree our responses have been different. I don’t know if it’s as much as an ideological divide as it may seem and though some are reading a lot into silence, from speaking with her I do not think that is her intent.

      In light of recent events and the things I have been thinking about, I reached out to her to discuss increasing the diversity of our podcast guests and she was fully supportive of actively seeking out more Black voices/non-white voices in the future. Our next episode happens to feature a Black woman (arranged weeks ago and recorded prior to George Floyd hitting national news outlets) and I asked Laura if I could add a statement against racism at the start of the episode. She was supportive of that as well (our guest was too — we asked).

  • Reply Guinevere June 7, 2020 at 2:10 pm

    Sarah, I want to give a comment in support of your partnership with Laura. I have followed Laura and read her books for years, and I first found out about your blog from one of Laura’s posts. I hope you and Laura keep producing your blogs and podcasts for years to come. It’s the first podcast I listen to every week. I appreciate your perspective on work and parenting as well as Laura’s. As a fellow planner and upholder, I am also really looking forward to your planning podcast.

  • Reply rose June 7, 2020 at 3:31 pm

    Thank you for the flower that looks like a butterfly picture. The joy and wonder and truth in children is refreshing.

  • Reply Kirsten June 7, 2020 at 4:40 pm

    I’m a long time reader of Shubox and first time commenter. There seems to be a big disconnect between Sarah’s political/social views and LV’s and it’s always puzzled me (especially since Sarah openly acknowledges her privilege and LV… does not and and even seems to revel
    in her privilege). Yes, there are many problems in the world that deserve our attention, but Floyd’s murder is an event where you are on the wrong side of history if you don’t condemn it and at least try to acknowledge that the US’ deeply ingrained racism caused it to happen. I’ve been glad to see Sarah post about it and dismayed at LV’s lack of a meaningful response.

    Sarah, I enjoy your blog very much and wouldn’t ask you to call out LV publicly but Anna has a good point. You and LV clearly have common interests in time management, parenting, and running but is that enough to justify this very public partnership?

    • Reply Sarah Hart-Unger June 8, 2020 at 5:52 am

      Hi Kirsten – I agree our responses have been different. I don’t know if it’s as much as an ideological divide as it may seem. I reached out to her to discuss increasing the diversity of our podcast guests and she was fully supportive of actively seeking out more Black voices/non-white voices in the future. Our next episode happens to feature a Black woman (arranged weeks ago and recorded prior to George Floyd hitting national news outlets) and I asked Laura if I could add a statement against racism at the start of the episode and she was supportive of that as well (our guest was too — we asked).

    • Reply Amy June 9, 2020 at 2:22 pm

      Agree. I read Laura’s books which I like a lot and found Sarah through the podcast. I find myself frequently frustrated by the podcast because I agree that Laura continually fails to recognize her privilege and lacks empathy for others. She appears to be a “my way or the highway” kind of person. So the podcast made me really like Sarah as a person and Laura less so.

      • Reply Sarah Hart-Unger June 9, 2020 at 2:55 pm

        I just want to be clear that I have learned a lot from Laura and consider her an IRL close friend. She has handled the current events in a different way from me but was supportive of the statements I wanted to make on the podcast and joint insta. I don’t think BOBW would be a podcast without her. I do believe she is sincerely supportive of the effort to increase the diversity of our guests.

  • Reply Megan Butler June 7, 2020 at 7:53 pm

    Hi Sarah! Longtime reader here (and lurker, I don’t really comment, haha). My kiddos are the same age as your first two (Kinder and 2nd) and I write workbooks. I’ve been in education and kids’ content development for my whole career and I love this series more than anything else I’ve ever worked on. It’s called TinkerActive, and the tagline is “Learn through play.” Anyway, the series goes K-2 currently (although it’s expanding) and has Science, English, and Math for each grade. Wanted to (humbly) share in case you wanted to check them out 🙂 Thank you!!!

  • Reply Lily June 8, 2020 at 5:02 am

    Yesterday my shampoo company sent me an email about their stance on anti-racism. I found it deeply weird. While I’m of course glad to know the company doesn’t support racism, they have my contact details because I want to know about their sales and new products, not their stance on social issues. If I’d heard about the company specifically being accused of something racist, I’d want know their side of the issue, but otherwise I want to see their anti-racism through the use of diverse models and ensuring they have products appropriate for natural hair types (which they do). I find it just as weird that there’s outrage about whether blogger x or y has specifically declared their anti-racism and stated what they do about it. I follow Laura (and Sarah) for time management and planning tips, for reminders about living an intentional life that includes family and career and service and fun. Given that they’re both well-off, white ladies, I assume that, when it comes to Black Lives Mattering, THIS ISN’T ABOUT THEM. I think we’ll look back at this time and be sad that so many people wasted so much time and outrage on whether posting a black square on social media showed true allyship or whether it was performative virtue signalling or whether the lack of a black square signified racism or the presence of a black square indicated a white person out of touch – I think the outrage is better directed elsewhere…. Laura and Sarah both use their platforms to share black voices, and they always acknowledge their privilege (and that of the vast majority of their readers, whether that privilege stems from race or from class and education).

    • Reply gwinne June 8, 2020 at 9:43 am

      Alternatively, I try not to support ‘brands’ and companies–with either my time or money–whose values and politics don’t align with my own.

      • Reply Anon June 9, 2020 at 10:14 pm

        I’m skeptical we are really learning whether brands’ value align with ours. Look at all of these statements — they say practically the same thing, and are even formatted the same !

  • Reply Lisa of Lisa's Yarns June 8, 2020 at 2:27 pm

    I was in bed at 9:30! Ha! How does Viva stay up that late? She must sleep late and nap really well! Our son is 2yo and not a great napper so he goes to bed around 7. We had pushed it to 7:30 but all the outdoor time lately has worn him out so he’s back to a 7pm bedtime. But he leaves the house by 7:15 every day so he can’t really ”sleep in.”

    After reading through the comments on this post, I’d chime in and say it is very obvious who is discussing the circumstances in our country and who isn’t… I live in Minneapolis so it’s hard to separate what is happening in my city from my day-to-day like because it’s very much impacted my life, although not to the degree it has affected those who live in the areas of the city that have burned down. But I’ve felt more called to educate myself on how to talk to our son about race.So it does feel a little weird when it’s not at all discussed on someone’s blog…

    • Reply Sarah Hart-Unger June 8, 2020 at 4:17 pm

      She usually naps 3 hrs! Then sleeps 9-7ish

  • Reply Marcia (OrganisingQueen) June 9, 2020 at 10:01 am

    Whoa! I came on to talk about walks and saw the comments above!

    Walks – I was going to say, when mine were littler (they’re nearly 11 now and we’ve been in this house 4 years), we lived in a house in another part of the city, and literally did the same walks over and over and over. Kids are amazing in that they see things that look different all the time; also, that part of our neighbourhood had great seasonal foliage – so plants and trees looked different every 3 months.

    For what it’s worth, I have a very good friend (we are not in a partnership though). She voted Trump and is a Trump supporter and I am…. very much not. I imagine this would be worse if I actually lived in the US. After the 2016 elections, we had to agree to just not talk about this because we feel so differently. I won’t lie – it has impacted our relationship a lot because we keep things more superficial now. I’d be interested to hear (in another post maybe) how you deal with these things with your actual friends.

    • Reply Sarah Hart-Unger June 9, 2020 at 1:36 pm

      I don’t have any IRL friends who voted for Trump. At least to my knowledge. And for that I am grateful.

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