Monday, November 03, 2014

Week in the Life: Day 7

“If you’re going to have a story, have a big story, or none at all.”
-Joseph Campbell

This is the story of Sunday:

With the end of daylight saving time, it was nice to have an extra hour to sleep in. It made getting up for the early service at church a breeze. I even made it there with time to look over and adjust the formatting of the worship graphics one last time. After the praise band warmed up, Elise came over to chat for a few minutes. I always look forward to this little ritual because even in these few short moments, we seem to share really authentic and raw thoughts with each other. This morning our conversation was cut short with the start of the service, but I treasured it nevertheless.

Today was All Saints Day, a day to remember the faithful who have gone before us. Hearing the reading of names and the tolling bell reminded me of my very vivid memories of the All Saints Day service 15 years ago when my dad's name was read.

After the service, I snacked on a bit of the yummy white chocolate cereal bark that was served at the Koinonia gathering before heading to Sunday School. Elise led the class in the third session about Why, a book by Adam Hamilton. It led to a really interesting theological discussion about God's perspective of time. And, I saw more signs pointing to the word "present"... the frontrunner in my quest for a 2015 One Little Word.

The Sunday afternoon routine around here involves washing laundry for the week. It's gotten to the point in my pregnancy where I can't lift the laundry hamper any more, but luckily Rob moved it from the closet to the hallway for me last night. I divided the clothes into stacks by color, and luckily because we did after-vacation laundry earlier this week, there are only three loads to wash and dry today.

One of the things that I am really proud of about our lives right now is that we're much more likely to turn on music than the television when we need some background noise. (In fact, we rarely turn the TV on at all, unless it is to watch a movie.) We have an iTouch set up on a docking station in the kitchen and regularly blast tunes through the house. The soundtrack of our lives right now includes our favorite Pandora stations: Meghan Trainor, Mumford and Sons, Anna Kendrick, CCR, and 90's Radio.

Rob had another day of weekend duty, so I was on my own for lunch. Again, trying to loosely follow the Brewer Pregnancy Diet, I wanted to try to make something with an egg. I opted for fried rice, although as I was making it I realized I was out of soy sauce and white onions. I substituted teriyaki sauce and red onions, and the result was delicious, if a bit unconventional.

I set a few housecleaning goals for myself today, so that I wouldn't end up sitting on the couch all day. However, I intentionally took my time and took breaks in between chores, so that I wouldn't exhaust myself. I was able to get the floors swept, the dishes washed, and the other two toilets cleaned, in addition to the laundry.

During my breaks from chores, I posted my Saturday WITL post to the blog and edited baby bump photos from the last couple of weeks. My mother-in-law demanded more photos earlier in the week, and although the tone of her text didn't inspire me to jump right on that task, I still wanted to get caught up. I have set up a shared stream through iPhoto on my phone which has been a great way to keep my family in the baby loop.

When Rob got home from work, he took the bike outside for a spin, saying he wanted to take advantage of the nice weather. However, he was an ice cube when he arrived back at the house... turns out it wasn't as warm as it looked. Rob parks his bike in the foyer, which although not necessarily my first-choice location, seems to work... that is, until it gets completely junky and overflows onto the floor, like it is now. I'm hoping that he'll notice the mess soon, so I won't have to nag at him to get it cleaned up.

While Rob showered, I went upstairs to finish folding the clean laundry. I strategically fold the clothes on our bed, so that I have to put them away before the night is over. Only occasionally are we so tired that we just move the piles to the floor. Tonight I had plenty of energy and time to put everything away. It's just so nice to start the week with a clean bedroom and a full closet.

Rob asked for cereal for dinner, which left me to fend for myself again. I wasn't super hungry, so I made a bag of kettle corn and snacked on some raw sugar snap peas while we wound down the weekend (and thus Week in the Life 2014) with a movie streamed from Netflix.

Sunday, November 02, 2014

Week in the Life: Day 6

“We tell ourselves stories in order to live.”
-Joan Didion

This is the story of Saturday:

When I woke up around 7:30, Rob was long gone to work for his weekend duty shift (usually every eight weeks). Saturday mornings are my favorite because I can leisurely lay in bed until I'm fully awake and then browse my phone until I'm ready to get out of bed. This morning I scrolled through all of the Halloween photos on Facebook and Instagram and saw reports that it snowed this morning. Rob even texted to confirm that there was accumulation in Greenville, but he made it to work safely. In my opinion, it's much too early in the year for snow!

Knowing that it was cold made it even more difficult to get myself out of the warm sheets. But eventually I threw on my robe and wool socks, and went downstairs to make a mug of hot cocoa and toast a couple waffles... more favorite Saturday traditions.

It ended up being a really lazy Saturday morning. I stayed in my pajamas and robe, and I'm not sure exactly where the hours went. I posted yesterday's photos to the blog, cleaned only one toilet, threw the bed linens in the wash, and other than that, I don't really know...

A little before noon I decided to hop in the shower, get dressed, and officially start the day. I thought I'd put the clean sheets on the bed before I went to grab some lunch, but I kept getting distracted, and by the time I finished it was already 2:00.

I knew I needed a little bit of protein for lunch, so I opted for a plain burger and small fries from Sonic. I just went through the drive-through and brought it home to eat. But even in that quick trip, it was so cold and windy, I wish I had worn my jacket. I got a kick out of watching the birds trying to fly into the wind. They were resilient little guys, but eventually flew down to a roof to take a break.

I spent the afternoon Christmas shopping on and updating my Christmas List app, trying to prepare my shopping cart for our big order. I have decided to give as many couple/family gifts as possible, but I still want to have something little for each of the kids. Given that I hope to spend the month of December in the throes of nesting and preparing for Baby B, I'm trying to get as much done ahead of time as possible. My goal is to have all of the Jamar/Perkins clan's gifts ready to hand off when I see my mom and sister at Thanksgiving in a few weeks.

Rob arrived home around 3:00, after a relatively uneventful day of weekend duty... the most exciting thing was walking the waterline to check for any sign of damage due to a reported earthquake 100 miles away in Augusta. He suited up for a quick spin on the bike trainer, and I finished up my "shopping" and brainstorming before our date night commenced.

We considered finding a corn maze or apple orchard for an adventurous date night, but due to the brisk weather, we decided a movie theater would be a better destination. We headed to Chipotle for our almost weekly burrito/taco dinner, and then made it to the theater with thirty minutes to spare. We love going to the dollar theater; they show movies on the big screen just before they come out on dvd... and you can't beat $2.50 per ticket! We saw 22 Jump Street, the equally entertaining sequel to 21 Jump Street. I'm sure we'll be quoting the one-liners for a while.

It was already 9:30 by the time we arrived home, so we headed upstairs for bed. We remembered to set our clocks back for the end of daylight saving time and relished in the fact that we would get an extra hour of sleep.

Saturday, November 01, 2014

Week in the Life: Day 5

“It has been said that next to hunger and thirst, our most basic human need is for storytelling.” 
-Khalil Gibran

This is the story of Friday... Halloween:

I was really running behind this morning... I tried to fit too many things in. In addition to my regular morning routine, I prepped our Halloween-themed pizzas for dinner tonight, ran around trying to find the picnic blanket (only to text Rob and find out it's still in his car), and then set up the self-timer on both the camera and my phone to get a good photo of my Halloween shirt.

Baby B is 27 weeks' gestation today... that means we've reached the 3rd trimester!! And, oh my goodness, but only about 13 weeks left to go. The pregnancy apps on my iPhone say Baby B is the size of a cauliflower and weighs about 2 pounds. Keep growing big and strong, Baby B!

There is a Krispy Kreme doughnut shop just around the corner from work, and I had my fingers crossed that there might be doughnuts around the office this morning. And, sure enough, Dr. Paulman sent an email around mid-morning with a witty Halloween poem... "All the candy they take / Leaving us only to scheme / To keep our… / Krispy Kreme!!" There was nobody around when I went downstairs, so I treated myself to two... ssssshhhh... don't tell... it's for the baby!

After my Facetime chat with Mama was cut short yesterday (last night she, Callie, and their husbands were at the Municipal Auditorium to hear President Carter speak for the 20th anniversary of Community Renewal International), I was glad to get a moment to chat with her on GoogleChat this morning. Fridays are usually really slow at work because none of the doctors are on campus, so after posting the videos from yesterday's lab, I worked on posting yesterday's photos to the blog.

For the last three years, Lesa and I have been wanting to do a Halloween picnic in the cemetery right next to campus. This year we were determined to make it happen. Surprisingly the other people we asked looked at us like were were crazy... some even turned us down. Luckily Gail was a good sport and agreed to join us. We ordered a pizza and cheese bread from Mellow Mushroom, and I ran to pick it up just before noon.

We spread out sheets and blankets on the grounds of Magnolia Cemetery to enjoy our picnic. We shared tales of spooky encounters and Halloweens past, and I showed them pictures of my niece's and nephews' Halloween costumes that my talented mama crafted. [See here and here.]

Gail was still a little nervous about walking around the cemetery, but we set out to find the oldest tombstone and to get some inspiration for baby names (Gail is pregnant, too!). Many of the stones had been worn down due to nature or broken due to vandalism, but we took turns reading the inscriptions that were still legible. Most of the graves date back to the mid- and late-1800s. Apparently there are many local politicians, educators, and civic leaders buried here, but I didn't recognize any names. It makes me want to brush up on the history of Spartanburg.

After working on the St. James website most of the afternoon, Dr. Williams asked me just before 5:00 to go upstairs to the lab to take some photos for his lecture next week. Once I was sure that he wouldn't need anything else from me, I headed out, stopping by the church on the way home to prep the graphics for Sunday's early service. I had the slides ready, but I needed to match them with the songs and scriptures in the EasyWorship software.

The Fellowship Hall has this great stained glass window on the stage that gets the best light in the late afternoon. I like to take a few moments each week to bask in the stillness and the quiet and to fully appreciate the light streaming through.

Traffic was terrible on the way home... the lights on Reidville Road don't seem to be timed right. Knowing I had the pizzas prepped and ready to go at home, I texted Rob to ask him to preheat the oven. When I arrived home, I saw that the oven was on, but I couldn't find Rob... turns out he was curled up on the sofa with a blanket over his head taking a quick nap. I threw the pizzas in the oven and whipped up the guacamole for a festive Halloween dinner.

After the neighborhood kids damaged Rob's car a few months ago (we think a kid wrecked his bike into the passenger side, but no one ever came forward), he has been a grouchy neighbor and said he wasn't in the mood to hand out Halloween candy this year. So instead, we turned out the lights and curled up in the living room for the first session of our online Birth Boot Camp class. Rob was able to figure out how to stream the videos from the XBOX, so along with the instructors' laid-back conversation, it really felt like we were sitting in a live class. But with the added advantage that we could make sarcastic remarks to each other, check our phones, and Rob could hide his head under the blanket through the birth videos at the end... he's still a little squeamish. Hence why we're taking the class!

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