A long weekend is the best kind of weekend. Saturdays feel like Fridays, Sundays feel like Saturdays, and Mondays feel like… well, Sundays. That extra day is such a gift.
I’m going to spend as much time as possible watching the waves (one of the many advantages to living in Southie, across the street from the ocean). And I’m going to drink cuvée from a can. And I’m going to trick Nick into doing a partner workout with me while wearing our matching shoes (yep, like a total creep, I copied him and ordered the same pair of Nikes).
And maybe I’ll do some laundry.
I hope you have a lovely long weekend.
Also On Tap for Today:
Re-reading a bunch of Mary Oliver poems (the best)
If you’re reading this, I’m already gone… to the beach. These are the days to soak up as much of this New England summer as we can, commit every moment possible to memory, get lots of sand stuck in the bottom of our canvas bags, spring for the medium large sundae and just simply enjoy life above 70 degrees.
Because, like these incredible summer sunsets Mother Nature has been painting for us lately, these days are all too fleeting.
Take it from your friendly neighborhood not-a-meteorologist: It is hot as blazes today. I slowed things down a bit at bootcamp this morning, but I’m not sure it made much of a difference. By the time Grace and I got home, we were both ridiculously sweaty and in need of an extra nutritious lazy summer lunch: Popsicles, raspberries and lots of water.
Now that I’m feeling rehydrated and somewhat normal, let’s revisit the weekend according to Instagram.
There is no point to this photo, except that I am obsessed with my dog. Clark has been extra patient and playful with Grace lately, and I think he’s finally back to his usual self after a not-so-usual winter. The poor little guy had emergency spinal surgery at the end of February, was on bedrest for six weeks and is still waiting for most of his back fur to regrow. It’s sort of like built-in air conditioning, but looks… weird nonetheless. Nick recently found the breeder’s new website (she was sort of MIA for a while, which fits the bill)– the last thing we need right now is a puppy, but there were three that looked so much like baby Clark that I almost tried to convince Nick this was a good idea. ‘Tis not.
I know I need to get over myself (and I mostly did this weekend), but as long as we’ve lived in Southie (and in the past two years, right on the water), I couldn’t bring myself to swim at Carson Beach. Supposedly the beaches in Southie are cleaner than Miami Beach, but… what does that even mean? Long story short: We all went swimming on Sunday. And it was actually kind of nice. So that’s that.
Sunday was National Ice Cream Day. I don’t know where this crap comes from, but I am happy to celebrate anything that involves sprinkles.
This poodle is one of Grace’s new best friends. As previously mentioned, she is a miniature dog whisperer. They flock to her (when she is not chasing them).
We went for a nice, long walk with my sister in Charlestown on Sunday (which is where we encountered the poodle), strolling through Paul Revere Park and through the Navy Yard.
My first Google Express delivery arrived on Saturday afternoon. We each received a gift code at last Tuesday’s dinner at Serafina to try out the service, and I’ve got to say, I’m impressed. I’ve got a gift code to share with you (please see below), too. The hardest part for me was deciding what to order. I originally planned to go with diapers (boring, but necessary), but Grace’s size wasn’t available… which was just the motivation I needed to order a few fun things instead. I love that you can purchase from multiple retailers in the same order. I ordered some moisturizer and my favorite eye shadow from Ulta, and Go Set a Watchman and a grown-up coloring book from Barnes + Noble. Everything was delivered the next day (in adorable packaging) during the delivery window I reserved. I can see this service being perfect for last minute gifts or entertaining (in addition to household staples) and would love to hear if you have or planned to order from Google Express.
And a leftover from Thursday: Why bring a teddy bear to a teddy bear picnic when you can bring a sloth? Exactly.
Here are the details for Google Express:
Now through August 2nd, use the code EXPRESSBOSTON to receive $25 off your first purchase with Google Express (limited to the first 2,500 users; please note it is stated in your cart when paying that Google Express may need to authorize payment method for the total amount of your order without the promotional credit, but the promotional credit will be reflected in the amount actually charged to your payment method.
For the first time since living in South Boston, we didn’t head out to watch the parade. Instead, I was being that mom at the pediatrician’s office. We got a contagious illness report from daycare this week (the dreaded conjunctivitis is going around), so when Grace started rubbing her eyes, I started becoming a nutcase. A word of advice: Don’t Google “pink eye” at three in the morning.
The nurse I spoke with this morning encouraged us to come in today, just in case. By the time 2 o’clock rolled around, I started to wonder if it was more likely Grace had accidentally squirted yogurt into her own eye, or that part of her bagel got in there or something. Needless to say: no conjunctivitis. I love our pediatrician, though (and the fact that they’ll see us on Sundays). We had no trouble getting out of Southie, but heading back in during the parade proved to be a bit more challenging.
One of the (presumably many) upsides to not being infected and being out and about? We had a little impromptu visit with my sister and brother-in-law during which Grace tried to eat a crayon and I learned that Selection Saturday is actually Selection Sunday. And I wonder why people don’t invite me to join their March Madness pools.
Oh but before I say anything else, sorry for talking about pink eye. I promise we did non-gross things this weekend too. Like the things pictured below.
The Weekend According to Instagram 32
First things first: The snow is melting… AND THINGS ARE GROWING. I spotted these little sprouts alongside our driveway on Sunday afternoon and literally shrieked in delight. I immediately emailed a photo to my husband and our neighbors. And I’m now taking bets on who thinks I’m crazier, our neighbors or Grace’s pediatrician. This weekend was great for my personal brand. Whatever that means.
Our neighborhood is ready for St. Patrick’s Day. I don’t want to live any where else. Most of the time.
A little weekend doodling. Watercolor + pen + birds.
I am obsessed with the artwork on these seed packets from the Hudson Valley Seed Library. I am kicking myself for not buying their calendar at the Flower Show.
Aaaand another photo from this year’s Boston Flower and Garden Show. Nick and I always talk about living in a tiny house one day, and I think I found the one this weekend. Technically, I think this is more of a garden shed, but I am pretty sure there’s room for Grace and Clark’s imaginary bunkbeds. And if I take after my maternal grandfather at all (which I hope I do), I’m only going to get shorter so…. I think it will work.
After the Flower Show, we ducked out of the rain and grabbed tacos across the street at Rosa Mexicana. Aren’t my lunch dates adorable?
I started Saturday morning with a big cup of organic peppermint amour and some to do list-ing. Of the 900 things on the list for the weekend, I think I accomplished 3. One of those things was “make a to do list.” Can’t win ’em all.
A peek at my art journal (you’ll find more pages here and here).
Did anyone else read Richard Scarry books as a kid? They were a family favorite of ours. I ordered a copy of Richard Scarry’s Best Word Book Ever for Grace and seriously… it’s the best word book ever. Not surprisingly, her favorite page is the one where the bear gets dressed. She is all about her shoes these days.
It has snowed 7 feet during the last 3 weeks here in Boston
I am about to quote a Florida Republican and member of the NRA (on the topic of winter, of all things)
It has come to this. My ability to use my own words is buried, along with my car, under all that snow. However, the former Congressman’s words (in this instance, at least) felt spot on.
After Nick cleared out the SUV and picked up some iced coffees (always iced, even when the thermometer iPhone weather app thing reads 4 degrees), we bundled up Grace and took a quick drive around the neighborhood.
I’m not a betting girl, but if I were, I’d say there will still be snow on the ground come Marathon Monday. [Side note: our friend Sarah is running Boston in support of the MGH Emergency Response Team. If you’re wondering what marathon training during this historic winter is like… welp, she’ll tell you.]
With no room for both cars and snowbanks, driving around here has felt a bit like living in a (mostly super-dangerous) video game. Last Thursday, it took me two hours to get from the South End to Southie. I was an hour late for daycare pick-up (fortunately, Nick was able to get there in time). Most of those two hours were spent in my own neighborhood, trying to navigate too narrow streets, while attempting to neither hit a pedestrian nor get hit by a bus.
It’s been a hundred years several months since I shared a Weekend According to Instagram update. Mostly because I was trying to learn Roman numerals and figure out what came after XXV. Just kidding. Or am I?
Regardless, we really packed quite a bit of fun into the past two days. I wish every day was a summer weekend day. Except, like, Christmas. Obviously.
After Nick got home from CrossFit and I finished a little yoga on the deck and a walk with my lovely friend Alyson, we headed down to my parents’ house for some pool time. Grace is still too young to wear sunblock (though our pediatrician did say we could test a tiny patch on her arm, she emphasized that our best bet is keeping her out of the sun altogether), so we broke out her ridiculous sun hat and rash guard for quick dip. She seemed a bit shocked at first and was clearly holding on for deal life, but I have a feeling we’ve got a water baby on our hands.
We spent lots of time outside this weekend, including a little Sunday evening stroll around the neighborhood with the Frenchie. Earlier in the day, Grace and I met up with our mom/baby friends and JP and then picked up Nick for our baptism prep class and some lunch in the Back Bay.
There is more Black Mass filming being done in our neighborhood this week. On one hand, it’s rather exciting to have Johnny Depp walking around, but on the other, it was a pretty unnerving to see signs about forced busing at the old Southie High last night. Sure, the fresh paint on the street is part of a movie set, but the busing crisis was a real and critical time in the city and neighborhood’s history, one with powerful and lasting effects.
On a lighter (only 100 calories and not the least bit depressing) note: I am going to eat 600 Yasso frozen Greek yogurt bars this summer. 2 down, 598 to go. I received a coupon for a free box a few weeks ago and highly recommend the sea salt caramel flavor (we’re already onto our second box), best enjoyed with your feet up on the deck. Oh, and save your popsicle sticks. I’ve got an easy DIY project coming up later this week.
Nick and I had our first date night (5 months in the making!) since becoming parents. Mom on the loose! We were able to get last minute tickets to Amaluna and my sister and brother-in-law generously offered to babysit. It was really nice to get out for a bit, especially knowing Grace (and Clark) were in such good hands. The pictures my sister took of Zach and Grace together basically melted my heart. Uncle Z is the coolest.
We were home before dark (and I nearly fell asleep during intermission — I need to step up my game if I want to convince Nick to go on a second post-baby date anytime soon), just in time to catch this beautiful sunset over the city.
I already want this summer to last forever.
Also On Tap for Today:
After watching Tiny, I’ve become obsessed with the idea of moving into a tiny house… maybe, like… in 20 years
If you have a lot of free time on your hands before the 4th, make these and impress your friends.
My midwife cleared me for yoga and “brisk walking” (which sounded super fun until I briskly wiped out on my neighbor’s icy sidewalk) two weeks after Grace was born. When I was still feeling (relatively) great two weeks later, she encouraged me to engage in “moderate exercise.” My CrossFit Southie membership is on hold for another week or so (and as anxious as I am to be back, I want to be sure I am as careful about returning to CrossFit as I was about CrossFitting while pregnant), and though I love a good workout DVD as much as the next girl, it felt important to get out of the condo. And see other people. Like, other than the post office people. I think they have grown weary of my chatty visits.
One of the upsides to being overtired is that I have much less energy to think rationally and/or talk myself out of things. When I received an invitation to the ClassPass Boston launch at Flywheel, I probably should have asked myself the following questions:
How might sitting on a spinning bike feel mere weeks after giving birth? (Don’t ask, I won’t tell…. Okay, I will. The first minute or so felt like an atomic wedgie of death… and then I remembered to adjust the seat height on my bike and all was right in the world. Obviously, the post-partum experience is different for everyone, but I am guessing there are more gentle re-entries into the world of exercise.)
Do I have any business whatsoever at a place as cool as Flywheel?
Can I ride a stationary bike? (It’s been ages.)
What if I fall off?
What will my mental state be at 7:30 PM, after being up all night and all day? Safe for human interaction? Acceptable for the public domain?
Do I own clothes other than these three bathrobes I’ve been rotating and have become weirdly attached to?
Instead, I just RSVP’d Very much yes.
And I’m so glad I did. In addition to the much needed normal (the others, not me) human interaction with some of my favorite Boston girls (Caroline, Sarah and Sarah), I got a great workout and maaaaan, did that feel good. I loved everything about Flywheel, from the friendly staff to the stadium-style set up, and the high-tech TorqBoard to the freedom to control how intense (or un-intense?) my workout would be. Added bonus: I did not fall off anything. Our instructor, Ann, had the best energy and chose the perfect soundtrack for our 45 minute ride. I can’t wait to take another class with her.
Lucky for me, I don’t have to wait long. Shortly after Tuesday’s event, the lovely Jenna at ClassPass reached out with the generous offer of a complimentary one month membership. I immediately (after saying thank you, obviously) booked another class with Ann at Flywheel and checked out the other classes available in and around Boston.
For $99/month, members can take up to 10 classes at partnering studios and gyms (up to 3 classes at a given studio per month, for example: 3 of your 10 classes can be at Flywheel). There is no long-term commitment required. You can find all the details here, but here’s my take:
While $99 isn’t chump change, the $10/class you’d pay with ClassPass is often much less than the cost of individual or drop-in classes at the participating gyms and studios (a single ride at Flywheel is $28… a bit rich for my wallet… but to be fair, this includes amenities such as shoes and lockers). #chaching
The variety of classes available (spinning, yoga, HIIT, etc.) is fantastic, and the participating studios and gyms are some of the city’s most popular venues (I love a good map: Boston studios, New York studios).
I love that you have to reserve your classes in advance. I know this will keep me accountable, while ensuring I am carving out time to take care of myself
ClassPass’ website is very user-friendly. Members have access to information about each class, studio and instructor, as well as a review system for sharing post-workout tips and experiences.
In addition to scheduling Ann’s class, I took a post-baby fitness class in the Back Bay this morning, and may also fit in a restorative yoga class (which I am hoping amounts to adult nap time… so tired) for later this week. In the meantime, I’m going to make a list of things normal people talk about (i.e. not diapers) and practice chitchatting with Clark.
Full monty disclosure: I attended a free class at Flywheel and received a complimentary month-long membership to ClassPass. All opinions and thoughts shared are my own. Especially the part about the wedgie.