Archive | March, 2020

Crazy times & finding sunshine.

16 Mar

You certainly don’t need me to name it for you – these times are crazy and strange and completely unprecedented in the years I’ve been roaming the world.

On Friday, before the governor announced a state-wide closure, the superintendent of the district I work in declared our schools closed until (at least) April 14. (This was after, that same day in the morning, he sent out an email to all staff saying that the rumor going around about closing school was just that. A rumor. An example of  how quickly things change these days.) The email came to staff at about 2:30 and for the last half hour of the day, teachers walked around in shock, speaking their surprise in code so the kids wouldn’t catch on. It was crazy.

Things have grown crazier since. I was supposed to report to work this morning for more details but that was canceled so as not to gather in a group of 50. I still wait for email details regarding pay and hours and all that adult stuff.  My poor brother and sister-in-law have had to postpone the great party that was to be their wedding in early April. Dave and I now have four weeks to eat out of the chest freezer, play board games, walk the dog, and – wait for it –

And so, all of a sudden, I have four weeks on my hands. You maybe do too. For me, it becomes a question of what can I accomplish in four weeks when I’m basically going to stay put and not leave the house? Because I have to accomplish things. It’s who I am. First answer: the living room remodel.


Since we moved in, the living room has been a project on the list. But it was a big one. There is lovely wood paneling that will need scuffing, priming and painting. There is window trim to paint. There is a wet bar and book shelf to address. The fireplace – well, the fireplace update will wait. There are also these s-u-p-e-r textured walls that we don’t love but also weren’t sure we wanted to tackle.

Until the other night, Dave suggested he could sand the texture down.

Like, he volunteered to do it.

How could I say no?

So today, on this first day of staying home, I cleared the living room space of all the things I could carry myself. After Dave was done with work (which he will now do from home), we moved our furniture and television to the front room, our temporary living space. We taped off the doorway to the kitchen, put down floor cover, and now Dave – lovely, wonderful, smartly-wearing-his-respirator Dave – is in the dust, sanding the horrid, 70s texture off the walls.  (You can catch a glimpse of the texture in the previous photo. Look at the ceiling – it’s the same on the walls. This is emphasized, thick texture that you cut yourself on if your hand moves too quickly along the wall.)IMG_8367

In addition to the dirty job of sanding, cleaning after sanding, and what will be the finicky job of painting, we’re ordering a yellow couch. You read that right. Yellow. I’ll prove it to you in 12-14 weeks when it arrives.

So there is the sunshine in the midst of a crazy, shitty situation. I figure we’re all going to need to find our own sunshine in the weeks to come. Mine is the dream of a yellow couch, a project with the husband, and walks with the dog. And finding whatever has been hiding in the bottom of the chest freezer as we avoid future trips to the store. That will be an adventure in itself.

This is what I’ve been up to …

9 Mar

I still owe you a post on HIS space – also known as the basement pinball lair. Soon.

In the meantime, here’s what’s new —

Dave loves a good bagel. A good NEW YORK style bagel. He used to live in NJ and I suppose became spoiled by the good stuff. Last weekend, we attempted to make our own bagels. Our own GOOD bagels – according to Dave’s standards. Thanks to the water bagel recipe from King Arthur Flour, I dare say we did it. Dave’s pleased as punch to have a stockpile of bagels in the freezer.IMG_8339

I have a new job. A new job at the same place. Back in January, the principal of the elementary school sent me an email and this is all it said: Please stop by my office when you can. Uhhh. CUE PANIC! I stopped by and that’s when he told me that they were hiring a new instructional paraprofessional to close out the school year and he thought I should apply. What’s the difference from my former position as a special education para? As an instructional para, I basically teach small groups as opposed to being in the classroom assisting a specific student(s). I pull groups of kiddos (mostly first graders) and we do math/writing learning for a half hour to 45 minutes. It’s definitely different and more difficult but I’m finding the groove.

February was a bit of a whirlwind with trips back home. First, to celebrate a cousin’s baby shower and then, the next weekend, a bridal shower for my soon-to-be (but-really-now-since-they-are-already-legally-married) sister. Now that I live close enough, a.) I could actually attend (Not to mention they were both held on Sundays.) and b.) I could help.


I made scones, meringue mushrooms, and Hershey kiss acorns for the baby shower’s woodland theme. (Meringue mushrooms = so fun. Let me know if you need any. I’d love a reason to make them again.) For the bridal shower, my cooking ability was challenged with lobster-stuffed mushrooms and curry chicken salad sandwiches – both the bride-to-be requests. Thankfully, Dave tackled the raw lobster tails for me. (green sick-looking emoji inserted here)

I made this soup for supper (with added/extra veggies). Five stars. Would recommend.

We’re currently casually couch shopping for our living room. Shall we talk about how absolutely overwhelming that venture is? Oy. We’re also planning a vacation to the Smokey Mountains in April with Dave’s brother & co. Let’s talk about how exciting that is instead.



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