We’ve had a bit of a break this past weekend in terms of social schedules and were able to spend some unstructured downtime at home. We chose to use that time to move Charlotte to her big-kid bed and out of the crib, which meant tears and frustration at night and an early riser in the mornings. Coincidentally, this was also the weekend she figured out how doors open, a curveball that I think surprised both her and us. She seemed pretty surprised when she was able to not only climb out of bed but walk out of the bedroom to protest her nap. We’re not starting the week from the most well-rested of places, but as of last night, it seems like things are back on track and getting into our familiar sleeping routine.
Here’s what I’m eating and reading this week:
Weekly Meal Plan (in case you need ideas or inspiration):
Sunday: White bean chicken chili with corn bread and sautéed green beans
Tuesday: Turkey over rice & spinach with roasted zucchini and broccoli
Wednesday: Chipotle pork tacos with pineapple salsa
Thursday: Dinner out at Green Street restaurant
Friday: Spaghetti and meatballs, sautéed green beans, and garlic bread
Saturday: Leftover spaghetti and meatballs, garlic bread, and broccoli-kale slaw
Here’s what I’m reading and loving this week:
Need a break and still super interested in Harry Potter? This was fun. (Be sure to check out the links below the main infographic.)
Technology and kids. I’m sure the landscape will change as Charlotte and her younger brother (arriving soon!) go through their childhood and adolescent years, but it’s a topic that warrants some thought and attention. Right now, we’re setting limits around TV time (Zootopia and Moana are favorites) with the mantra that “we don’t turn the TV on in the morning, that’s something we can do in the afternoon” and not having screens at dinner (that’s mostly relevant for David and me not using our phones and starting to model that behavior). I also saw on the masthead of this month’s Bon Appetit that some staff member’s restaurant pet peeve was kids with iPads, and I have to disagree. Of course we opt for crayons and coloring first, but when Charlotte’s a few breaths away from a meltdown, the iPad is a handy back-up option to prevent ruining brunch for us and everyone else in the restaurant. It doesn’t bother me if you’re bothered by my kid’s use of screens at the table.
By: Weike Wang
I can’t remember how this book made it’s way onto my reading list, but it came highly recommended as a powerful debut novel by Wang, whose own background is in the scientific fields prior to her leap into writing. This book did a decent job of living up to the hype; it was a well-written and interesting exploration of a person living her life and making decisions behind the science, clearly written by someone who as a solid understanding of both the academic material and the day-to-day life experiences described.
It’s not actually about chemistry, but about the way relationships change (those with our parents, our peers and colleagues, our romantic partners) and how we feel or try to make sense of those changes.
There were a few ways in which I was uncomfortable in reading the book (not necessarily a bad thing). Its set literally in my neighborhood, with the protagonist working towards her PhD at a well-respected Cambridge university. Wang writes eloquently about depression without hitting you over the head with it. I could also see so many elements of my real-life clients struggling with perfectionism, sky-high self-imposed or parental expectations around academic achievement and accomplishment, in the main character, and there were certainly choices, challenges, and losses that made me wince in recognition and empathy with what I see in the realities of students in this area. It’s not a bad thing to have a book make you uncomfortable with realistic reflections of the world around us.