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Currently . . .

November 3, 2021

1- Looking forward to making vaccine appointments for A&C! I will call our pediatrician today — he had said he was preparing to receive a big shipment. Our flu shot appointment was way more dramatic than it needed to be, so this time I will bring 3 pieces of candy to be doled out immediately to kids who can be brave and not try to run away from then nurse giving the shots . . .

This map is soooo weird to see! We are the only yellow state and case rates are still falling . . . for now anyway!

2- Thinking about travel! AHHHH! In 2.5 weeks we will be taking our first family plane flight in forever. I really want to a) pack intelligently b) plan out some fun activities so that we are not just sitting around arguing about what to do. I already know I want to hit up the Museum of Life + Science and the Duke Gardens (though both are in Durham and we will be staying in Cary near my sister!).

3- Not super happy about the state of my wardrobe, both work + casual. My shoes are all falling apart. My shirts are aging. As previously noted, some of my work pants do not currently fit well (WILL THEY EVER AGAIN?! I am not ready to give up . . . yet). I no longer really like wearing dresses to work because I really like to take a walk outside during lunchtime if possible and a dress (or even skirt) just feels like too much. Also, I think I want a new winter coat for travel?! This seems ridiculous but at the same time, wearing my coat from circa 2011 is starting to feel kind of lame. I’m thinking relatively inexpensive-but-sleek puffer jacket, if such a thing exists?

4- Really enjoying 4000 weeks so far. His discussions about how time is finite are not earth shattering to me (I recall an article from several years back that was called something like “We Plan Because We Know We Are Going to Die” — I can’t find it, but I totally agree with the sentiment). That said, there’s an interesting tension there, because some of the practices I find valuable (INBOX ZERO), Oliver Burkeman seems to be against. He is correct that sending more emails DOES result in more emails, and completing projects at work efficiently just gets you more projects. Yet the nature of my job does not really allow for me to ignore emails.

5- Post-work difficulties. Yesterday C had homework which he was greatly struggling with (most of the struggle mental – like angst about having to do it rather than the actual content, if that makes sense?) and I was really really not the patient parent that I want to be. I will keep working on it. On the days that our nanny starts late, I will have her stay until I can help him finish. It is 3958394 times harder when the other two are around causing more distractions and fraying my attention, too.


  • Reply Erica November 3, 2021 at 6:26 am

    I just saw this great jacket listed in a New York Magazine gift guide for travelers – might be worth checking out!

  • Reply Erica November 3, 2021 at 6:27 am

    I just saw this great jacket in a New York Magazine Strategist gift guide for travelers – might want to check it out.

  • Reply MBC November 3, 2021 at 6:41 am

    I’d look at Old Navy for a jacket. While I don’t generally recommend their winter stuff because it falls apart by the end of a loooong northern winter with the very infrequent use you’d get living in Florida it probably makes sense.

  • Reply CBS November 3, 2021 at 8:10 am

    I have a uniqlo puffer which is decently sleek and folds up into a little pouch when you’re not using it which makes it nice when you are travelling to and from someplace warmer.

    • Reply katie November 3, 2021 at 10:53 am

      co-signing on the uniqlo ultra light puffer coats. pretty warm for the weight & i will often wear under my raincoat on cold, rainy days.

  • Reply Grateful Kae November 3, 2021 at 8:30 am

    Check out Eddie Bauer also for outerwear- I always like their stuff!

  • Reply TAS November 3, 2021 at 9:31 am

    This is cheesy and maybe embarrassing but I buy my puffer jackets at Costco. They have lasted several winters and one folds down into a small all for travel.

    • Reply Dana November 3, 2021 at 10:23 am

      My first thought was Costco too so you aren’t alone! Not sure they carry lots of jackets in Florida but they have surprisingly wide selection and good prices.

    • Reply Erin November 3, 2021 at 10:41 am

      I live in Minnesota and Costco jackets are legit! I do have an intense jacket for extreme cold, but my Costco puffer is perfect for the 30-40 degree range. Problem is they likely don’t sell in FL but maybe you could order online?

    • Reply Elisabeth November 3, 2021 at 11:12 am

      I don’t have a Costco puffer, but my 6-year old does and it has been amazing. Great quality, just the right temperature for spring/fall in Canada and so convenient (folds up small, easy to stuff into a bookbag at the end of the day if things are too hot for a coat). They also tend to be on the “sleeker” side!

    • Reply KGC November 3, 2021 at 11:19 am

      Yup, another vote for Costco. I have my ‘super’ winter coat from them (which you do NOT need for FL) and a lighter puffer, both of which I have owned for years and love. I bet you could order online. I’m quite small and often struggle to find coats that don’t swallow me and both fit me well – so they are definitely more ‘sleek’ looking and the lighter one compresses/folds quite small. I bet you could order a few online to try (though I suppose you have to be a member to do so??). Good luck!

  • Reply Gillian November 3, 2021 at 9:31 am

    I just scheduled my younger 3 kids for Covid vaccines next week. I am so excited to have this on the calendar! My older one has been vaccinated since June.

    I agree the uniqlo puffers are great for travel and mine have held up relatively well to regular wear. And the price point is nice since you won’t be wearing it all the time.

    As for the homework, I feel your pain. It has helped us to have a set time for homework each day (5-5:30 in our case). Then it isn’t you saying it has to get done, but the clock. For my 3rd grader whatever isn’t done at 5:30 is going back unfinished. This helps with both natural consequences (if you don’t focus and get it done, it goes back undone) and for the teacher to see what is getting done in 30 minutes. This does not include the required 30 minutes of independent reading. In my experience this gets so much better as they get older. Intrinsic motivation starts to take over, but you have some time before that happens.

    • Reply Irene November 3, 2021 at 11:12 am

      Apparently our elementary school has the reputation of being light on homework which I did not know ahead of time but am SO grateful for! Had no idea it varies so much from school to school. So actually have not had any homework assigned yet and therefore not dealt with this yet, but I think my oldest is a year younger than C. Does he learn anything from the homework? Just wondering if it’s a constant struggle if it’s worth asking the teacher if he *really* needs to do all of it. My daughter is super high energy (ADHD) and I feel like making her sit and do something unnecessary would backfire with worse behavior at school the next day.

      • Reply Gillian November 3, 2021 at 4:04 pm

        @Irene, I agree with this. Our school limits homework at the K-3 level to reading, spelling practice and math facts. Things where practice and repetition really matter. Otherwise, I would consider asking the teacher for a modified assignment.

  • Reply Jasmine November 3, 2021 at 10:33 am

    Old Navy has thin puffer jackets. I have a long one and with a sweater underneath it was good enough for a Canadian winter! (Maybe 2 layers when it went to -15C.)

  • Reply Beth November 3, 2021 at 11:48 am

    Oh, I miss the Life & Science Museum. If you are eating in restaurants, Elmo’s Diner for breakfast is a huge winner. (The one in Durham near NCSSM.) In Cary, Bond Park can entertain my kids for a while. Prairie Ridge Ecostation and the NC Art Museum grounds are fun. Marbles in downtown Raleigh is fun but not sure I’d be game for that in COVID times (mostly indoors). LMK if you want more recs, I could go all day. 🙂

  • Reply Lisa of Lisa's Yarns November 3, 2021 at 12:29 pm

    So excited that 2/3 of your kids are vaccine eligible! Hopefully the dose is approved for younger kids soonish? Like February maybe? We had to get covid tests yesterday as I took an at home test on Monday night due to cold-like symptoms and it was positive!! We got PCRs yesterday which were all negative – phew. But we totally brought a piece of candy for our son to have after the nasal probe (which was much less bad than last year when they really jammed it up there and swirled for a good 5-10 seconds).

    We are going on our first family trip in Feb – can’t wait! We wouldn’t have traveled last year even if not for covid since traveling with babies is just not our thing! But I am happy that we can go down to see my sister in Tucson in Feb!

  • Reply omdg November 3, 2021 at 12:51 pm

    I got a Marmot puffer jacket on Amazon I think for around $100. It’s cute enough, and probably warm enough for 40 degree weather if you’re not a total wimp 😉 I also have one from Old Navy that, honestly, is pretty heinous, but it was so cheap (like $30) and is SO warm. Maybe this year they’ll have cuter colors?

  • Reply Heather November 3, 2021 at 3:08 pm

    I love the three quarter length ultra warm jacket from LL Bean and they have it in petite length!

  • Reply Amanda November 4, 2021 at 12:56 pm

    Another suggestion for a new winter coat – check out Definitely worth saving $ since it’s not an everyday wardrobe item in south Florida. 🙂

  • Reply Sidra November 4, 2021 at 2:19 pm

    Maybe it’s just because I grew up in Upstate NY, but if you are going to be in Cary, NC, definitely check out Wegmans!

  • Reply MK November 5, 2021 at 9:43 am

    Re: kids and shots: For my 6 year old this year (after a very rough round of 5 year old shots) I brought ice cubes with us to the appointment and rubbed one on his arm before the flu shot and he said he couldn’t feel the shot at all! This was a trick I learned from his dermatologist after he needed to have a mole removed and seems to work well! Just a thought that I found useful and wanted to pass on!

  • Reply Kristen M November 9, 2021 at 11:32 am

    This space just opened in RTP and it’s really fun and great to bring kids to if you want a fun spot to grab food (including some excellent NC BBQ) (Transfer Food Hall in Raleigh is also a solid pick)
    Dix Park is fun to run around, as is the NC Art Museum!

    • Reply Sarah Hart-Unger November 9, 2021 at 12:58 pm

      ooh! thank you for the rec!!!

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