Weeknotes 170: Part, part, whole.

The birch set against a backdrop of grey

I occasional bang on about Morning Pages and their role as an alternative to therapy for me. But they really are. Minor Monday Morning Misgivings™ in the shower nipped in the bud before they could bloom. Settled on four causes; holiday prep, lack of exercise, a new work role and over-tiredness.

1. Holiday Prep

We’re out of practice sorting holidays, but we’ve slowly rediscovered our system. The Chef starts with huge amounts of research for which I’m forever grateful. Then we sit together on the couch with a browser window, OneNote and bottomless cups of tea. OneNote fills up with blue pen for ideas. In between pees1, the blue changes to black as we get things booked in. And the panic recedes as we remember it’s going to be amazing. This blog has helped immensely.

Related, if you’re a couple I posit one of you files and the other abandons2. Unfortunately for our Visa application, I’m the filer and The Chef is the abandoner. I needed to find one (1) passport whereas she needed a nationalisation certificate, three passports, deed poll and birth certificate. So that was a fun week hunting. We have everything now though.

2. Lack of Exercise

Flu and Christmas knocked me out of my jogging habit. And it took writing it down to realise I could just, well, go for a jog. So I did. Chatting with my mate and he’s hit our target and it may have made me head out too fast for a first session back. I was like an accordion full of rocks being dropped down the stairs the next morning.

3. Work Stuff

My half-year review basically said, You’re fine. This one is a free hit but don’t use it that way. You’re middle management now and have to do management with the technical stuff. Get over yourself, stop whining and JFDI.” Fair feedback. I did have a little soapbox moment about not calling people resources.

4. Tiredness

This really is the section for the kids, bless em. Me and The Chef were eyeballing each other one morning, full of recrimination, why did you get to skive when I was up so much?” before we realised we’d both done the full night and the Wee Free Man’s longest stretch of sleep was 30 minutes. Now he’s got five teeth.

The next night Storm Isha keened outside the window, close enough in sound to the Wee Free Man that we again failed to sleep.

Things improved over the course of the week, but even if they hadn’t, they’re more than worth it. The Wee Free Man has an incredibly cute anticipatory laugh. Belly laughs if he knows cheese is in his future. And a full dictionary of raspberries: Tongue in, displeasure; Tongue out, joy; When eating, spotted something tastier; Pressed against someone else, play to make them laugh.

He did puke in my face during disco in the dark mind.

Piglet has been showing a general dislike of hobbies this week. Four feels too young for us to switch from practical to emotional support? But she’s getting herself dressed and can suddenly reach all of the light switches. More than once before bed she’s asked if I can just lie by her for a bit. The clichés are true: it all happens too fast.

Come the weekend and we were living the middle-aged dream. We’d farmed Piglet out to her grandparents so we could get on with jobs around the house. Oh yeah. Piglet announced on arrival that she wasn’t getting out of her pyjamas for the weekend—a recurring theme—and that they were to watch movies and eat popcorn. It’s good to be clear in what you want. Meanwhile we cracked on fixing the front door, tidying the garden and—shock! horror!—hoovering every room. Felt justified in treating ourselves to an evening of relaxation; games for The Chef and FA Cup with bath beers for me.

We offered to cook Sunday Roast for Grandma and Granddad to say thank you, but Grandma was having none of it, preferring to host to give us a few extra hours on Sunday to do the back garden. There’s a kind of therapy to a Sunday where you do three rounds of dishes too.

The roast was great, capping a week of good food3. Weight loss is input more than output and I’m consistently losing two kilos through the week and putting two back on at the weekend. Through the worst of the Post-Christmas shrinking of our bellies back to accepting the recommended number of calories for a human adult human, rather than bison levels. Piglet didn’t join us. Too ill. We’ve had an email about slapped cheek. Maybe those emotional days were coloured by illness, at least in part.

Not sure where to put my music link this week, so it’s going here: Iechyd Da (via Hicks). And on music, RIP Neil. Your lambasting of Britpop is a constant re-read. Humour, anger and great taste; everything needed for a cricket.

The Wee Free Man is still not crawling, although now we have some reversing and a comfortable line in sitting up from a lie down.

  1. Occupational hazard with bottomless tea.↩︎

  2. The addendum is that you don’t want to go into the kitchen after an abandoner has cooked a meal. What is true of paperwork is true of knives and pans.↩︎

  3. It’s only a minor exaggeration to say the pork chops The Chef brought home from the butcher were as thick as my thigh.↩︎

29 January 2024


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