life Parenting

Change is Inevitable (+ Other Random Stuff)

April 29, 2023

Saturday gymnastics routine

I’m sad to say this little routine where I sit at gymnastics while all 3 take a class — usually writing a weekend post or checking up on email — is going to end. And probably never return.

my chill set up. They have internet + tables!

The classes will still happen, but 2/3 kids are not excited about continuing and while I am insistent that they finish out the academic year (there’s just one more month!), that will be that. I will miss this peaceful time, perfect for chill laptop work and a built-in window for Josh to run, since I am usually done with my long run before I take them.

Instead, C may have more soccer or other sports on Saturdays, A plans on branching out into other things (she has mentioned acro / swimming / track / voice lessons / theater), and G may still be in this class but also maybe I’ll try to shift her to weekdays or a different session.

I guess the only constant in life is change!!!

Random travel question:

Anyone know about the little island areas around Vancouver (Vancouver Island / Nanaimo / etc)? This summer we are doing an Alaska (Disney) cruise out of Vancouver (very excited for this!!!!) and we plan on doing 2-3 days in Vancouver prior, but I want to do something beachy or mountain-y afterwards for a couple days. If you have recommendations for places to go or stay in that vicinity, I would love them!

totally makes me think of The Glass Hotel (great book!)

D-I-T-L installment: Friday

4:45 up, read, plan, HS. I slept like %(*$, woke up at 3:30 for no reason and never really got back to sleep.

5:45 run, 6 mi easy (10:18/mi)

6:45 home, shower, kids, bfast

7:35 drive kids to school // drive to work

8:30 patients, notes + calls

12:30 resident presentation

1:00 lunch (I got Door Dash – Bolay); read blogs / write blog post / check email / relax. And some random admin like signing C up for summer basketball, some emails, order a bday gift, etc

2:00 various pt result calls etc, clear out work email, etc

4:00 inbox zero has been reached (EPIC / Outlook). Plan next week, did a meal plan / ordered groceries to arrive Saturday afternoon (my current policy is: TJs if I can go alone / Whole Foods delivery if not).

5:00 leave! Stop at library on way home. Now I need to suspend the rest of my holds bc I have too many books and too little time.

5:45 HOME! Kids had eaten super early so had dinner while reading Runner’s World mag. Then kids basically watched TV until 8 pm; I filled out our Essential Calendar (<– I am an affiliate; BESTLAIDPLANS will get you a 10% discount) and taped it with washi tape to the wall. It’s not the WORLD’s most aesthetic the way I did it . . . but it’s functional! We ate some leftover Crumbl cookies (and today’s run went really well so . . . is this my new carb loading practice?).

8:00 Kid bedtime routine. I felt fine all day despite totally inadequate sleep the night before until 8 pm when I wanted to crash face down into bed. Josh was at a conference so this was not an option but I definitely moved bedtime along.

8:45 Kids all in bed; went to own bed and asleep by 9.


  • Reply Lani Inlander April 29, 2023 at 10:47 am

    I met a fabulous native/Canadian/female artist when I was in NYC last week. She was telling me about a magical place to take the whole family outside of Vancouver. I will get the information and pass it along!

  • Reply Lisa of Lisa’s Yarns April 29, 2023 at 10:49 am

    I ran the Victoria half marathon years ago and loved that city. It feels very European and charming. I don’t know that I would go there with kids, though. Felt more like an adult/couples kind of destination but other readers might feel differently. It also kind of feels like a bit of an ordeal to get to Vancouver island so might not be worth it for just a couple of days m? You could stay on the mainland and go up the coast like to the Sunshine Coast area (I was there for a wedding 10+ years ago and it’s beautiful) or you could go a bit east to the Shuswap area. That’s an area with lakes surrounded by mountains that is so gorgeous! I would choose Shuswap over Sunshine Coast.

    Bummer about gymnastics coming to an end!

  • Reply Steph April 29, 2023 at 11:17 am

    I’m from the Vancouver suburbs and would suggest taking the ferry over to Nanaimo and driving to Parksville (about 45 minutes). They have Rathtrevor beach and Englishman River Falls provincial park which are two of my favourite areas – I actually plan to move to Parksville when I retire. Qualicum Beach is also a cute beach town not far away. Mount Arrowsmith Brewing Company has great craft beer and pizza. I like to stay at Tigh-na-Mara resort or Oceanside Village Resort (my preference as you rent an entire house). The ferry is 2.5 hours and in the summer you must have a reservation. We BCers love to go to Vancouver Island too 🙂

  • Reply Alyssa April 29, 2023 at 11:46 am

    I lived in Vancouver for 10 years and just moved back to Toronto last year. You could easily go to a smaller gulf island and get an air bnb (suggest hornby, Bowen, salt
    Spring or pender all as great options) for a northwest beachy vibe. All accessible by ferry from the lower mainland (book on bc ferries). Def need to look at air bnb early as availability can be hard to come by.
    If you’re up for a bigger trek, Tofino on the northwest side of Vancouver island is awesome.
    If you really want beaches and mountains, just stay in Vancouver! Downtown beaches are great, lots to do and 30 mins from the mountains with public transit options to get you there (take the sky ride up grouse mountain and see the grizzly bears at the top!). Feel free to send me an email if you have more qs!

  • Reply Amanda April 29, 2023 at 11:52 am

    My kids sadly ended gymnastics together recently and I also loved that time! It’s amazing how much you’re able to get done at work on Friday afternoons. It’s nice to not have patients for a block of time to catch up. Do you have new messages/requests coming in during this time?

    I like your system to do so much in advance of the weekend! I’m usually working on things that need to be done until at least 5p. I also find myself putting a grocery order together while multitasking on a zoom call. 🙃

    Your summer trip sounds fun!

    • Reply Sarah Hart-Unger April 29, 2023 at 12:35 pm

      Some stuff came in yep – but mostly quick stuff.

      I’m 0.6FTE but I don’t compensate (ie work less) the weeks after my call weeks so it balances out my lighter Fridays. To be clear everyone gets some admin time but I get proportionally more by a couple hours. Sometimes i think about changing that (making Friday a longer clinical day only working one day in my post call week so that I am keeping with 6/10 business days) but I kind of like the Fridays I have now!

  • Reply Kristin McHale April 29, 2023 at 3:54 pm

    I live on Vancouver Island in Victoria! And also lived in Vancouver for years. There is tons of great stuff to do here for families. I’m a long time reader and fan of your podcast and I’d love to help you plan your trip if you want to talk through logistics-I’ll send you an email!

    • Reply Sarah Hart-Unger April 29, 2023 at 5:15 pm

      Hi!!! Emailing you!!!! TY!

  • Reply Kristin Johnson April 29, 2023 at 4:44 pm

    I live in Vancouver. Highly recommend parksville. We love going to the Beach Club resort. The location can’t be beat and suites for families are great! It’s right on the walkway, only a few minutes from a great playground and the town (walking).

    But you likely won’t go wrong. But I would probably choose somewhere other than Nanaimo proper. It’s a fine place but it’s just a typical town (albeit on the ocean) if you’re looking for more of a nature experience.

    You also could just stay in Vancouver. Spanish banks by the university is a gorgeous beach. Squamish and Whistler are close and there are local mountains for hiking etc.

    • Reply Sarah Hart-Unger April 29, 2023 at 5:14 pm

      Beach Club is booked for fam of 5! (I knew I should have started this earlier . . but we were initially thinking whistler! Still might veer in that direction instead!)

      • Reply Kristin May 3, 2023 at 7:33 pm

        You can’t go wrong with either! You’ll have a great time either way! If you need Vancouver recs, I’m happy to help! My kids are a little younger so I may not know all the cool tween things, but I love helping people enjoy our city!

  • Reply Mtbakergirl April 29, 2023 at 5:43 pm

    Grew up in Victoria- now live in the lower mainland! Popping in to say you have received excellent advice! Everything suggested would be awesome! My only 2 additional thoughts are 1- availability will be tight- maybe just look at them all and let the universe guide you via whatever you can book! 2- if you want mountains the Whistler/ Squamish area in the lower mainland is where you should stick!!

    • Reply Sarah Hart-Unger April 29, 2023 at 7:25 pm

      thank you! Yep, I think we are going to let airbnb guide us and leaning towards parksville area! from this vantage point it looks like a gorgeous west coast canadian version of our beloved Amelia island 🙂 that’s what I think we are going for . . .

  • Reply Lori C April 29, 2023 at 8:21 pm

    Simple post but I love DITL posts! Vancouver Island sounds awesome. I’ve wanted to visit after reading the Glass Hotel book! We are planning on doing the Disney Alaska cruise in a couple years so I’m excited to hear your thoughts!

  • Reply Bridget April 30, 2023 at 5:42 am

    I see you have mentioned Parksville. I live here. There are quite a few places on resort row but it does get busy here in the summer. If you have any questions happy to help.

  • Reply Sarah April 30, 2023 at 9:31 am

    If you end up deciding on mountains, consider Pemberton instead of Whistler. Much more chill, good restaurants, a brewery or two, and lots of nice hiking, even for a little!

  • Reply Leneigh May 1, 2023 at 10:39 am

    Hi Sarah,

    I’m also from BC so I know the Vancouver island area well. Feel free to email me as well!

    I recommend Gabriola island which has a 30 minute ferry out of Nanaimo to access it. It is one of the beautiful gulf islands, has amazing beaches and is less touristy than some of the other gulf islands (like Saltspring).

    Feel free to email me too if you have more questions or want recommendations about Gabriola! We have family there and I have gone there every summer for my whole life :).

  • Reply Sarah Hand May 7, 2023 at 8:06 pm

    I live on Vancouver Island, and there are lots of lovely places to visit. Tofino is nice for a beach day, and Cathedral Grove (mid-island) is a great place to see some big trees!

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