Weeks of May 22 & 29, 2023

I prioritized spending time with family and friends last weekend, so I am doing a combined post this week.

My parents came to visit over Memorial Day weekend, and it was great to spend time with them. The weather was beautiful and we spent a lot of time outside. We got the tomatoes and tomatillos planted in the garden, added more dirt to the potatoes (which are doing great!), washed and folded up a tarp that I’ve been neglecting, and changed the spigot on our bathtub. We didn’t work the whole time… a decent amount of time was spent on the deck, which we just got some new furniture for: A cantilever umbrella, a couch, and some chairs. (We got a rug this week, but no photos of that yet.) We made some pizza and tiki drinks one night, and another they watched Charlie while Amanda and I went out on a date.

One thing I forgot in the last post: Charlie recapped his day during bedtime. Amanda heard him saying the words he knows for things he did that day, like he was recapping the day’s events. Pizza, Carly, Cupcake, Lella, Drive. We went to a birthday party for Carly, had pizza, ate a cupcake, played with Lianella, and pretended to drive on an arcade game. He amazes us every day.

Today’s amazement: He started washing one of his bathtoys (a seal), just like I was washing him. Then when it was time to get out of the tub he started handing me his toys so I could put them away, which he hasn’t done before (nor have we asked him to.)

This week Charlie has been saying Thank You (without being asked!) to people when they help him with things. It is very sweet. It gets our hearts every time.

Charlie has been a little more independent on the climbing wall lately. He doesn’t want help placing his feet.

Sometimes you feel more like a parent (taking care of the kid, making sure they are fed and safe, dealing with their tantrums) and other times you feel more like a Dad (the two of you having fun together, they are being very lovey and sweet, and things are just generally going better). This week I felt more like a Dad. Lots of walks, giggles, sweet snuggly reading time, fun dinners out while Mom traveled for work. Charlie jamming to music while eating pizza at Baci’s Woodfired Wednesday, the pure joy on his face when having ice cream at the Blue Pig, sitting on the front porch and giggling together. What a wonderful feeling! ♥️

We had one of Charlie’s classmates and her parents over for a play date and dinner on Saturday. They played well together, shared better than we expected, had conversations together that the grown-ups didn’t understand, and both mentioned each other’s names the next day. The cardboard house made out of the huge box the patio furniture came in and the big yoga ball were the two hits of the day. It was great to see Charlie playing with a friend. We are actively making plans to hang out again.

I’ve been listening to The Hold Steady a lot lately. Looks like they are having a cool festival celebrating 20 years of being a band up at Arrowood Farms, a place we really like. I’m not going, but I expect it to be a great time for those who do.

Our method for getting marginally more vegetables into our diet: Every salad has lots of broccoli slaw mix added, which in addition to nutrition gives it a nice crunch component. And our self-imposed rule is that we have to finish our salad before getting seconds on the main dish. (That rule doesn’t apply to Charlie… it is challenging enough to get him to eat as it is.)

The veggie shares start this coming week, which we are very much looking forward to!

Charlie loves playing with the hose.

I’m pleased with the garden and yard plants in general this year. The peas are blooming right now, the potatoes are growing quickly, and the spinach and kale are putting out lots of leaves. After two years of trying to get some perennials to grow on the side of our house from seed, we finally have some Rudbeckias that are taking off. Looking forward to the blooms brightening up that side of the house.

An update to the wick irrigation for the tomatoes this year: I buried the buckets and make them stick out of the dirt only an inch or so to minimize the length of rope that is out of the water or dirt so it has less of an opportunity to dry out. So far so good with the couple of 90+F days we’ve had.

Not all worked out, though. The basil, rosemary, and peppers I planted either didn’t come up or died. Most of the cilantro and spinach I planted didn’t come up either–only a few plants sprouted. So we went to the local greenhouse today and bought some basil, rosemary, jalapenos, and parsley to plant.

The Mock Orange is blooming right now, and so are the Rose campion.

Mock Orange plant in bloom

My weather station showed a high of 104F on Friday. I am certain this was inaccurate, because I was outside at the time and I think it was a lot closer to 92-94F. The sun has been very intense though, so maybe the whole unit got overheated. 🤷‍♂️

I’ve been pretty much off of social media for the past month and a half, and that has felt pretty good. I did log on to Instagram today to post a story of Charlie and the hose, but I’ll probably delete the app off of my phone again soon. Even new things like getting an invite to Bluesky haven’t been able to pull me back into social media. I’ve also been neglecting the internet in general. My unread feeds backlog is so long that I might have to declare bankruptcy.

Is it the time of year? Is it wanting to spend as much time as I can with Charlie? Disillusionment? Probably all of the above.

When I am on my phone, I’ve been reading books in the Kindle app, which is something I never thought I’d do. Nothing beats the convenience of always having your phone on you, though.

I’m currently reading Critical Mass by Daniel Suarez, book two of the Delta-v series.

I think I want to start Ada Palmer’s Terra Ignota series next. She has a fantastic blog, by the way.

This time last year I had just started the Baroque Cycle series. Right now I’m on book 7 of 8. Still listening while I mow the lawn or do the dishes.

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