Well, for one thing, not being dead! I’m still here. I’m not really sure what happened to this month; the first half was taken up with sickness and the second half? Maybe recovery, maybe just laziness. But here I am.

We started out the month with Anna’s baptism:

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We were nervous about how Will would manage his time up in front of the congregation, but thankfully he did pretty well. It was his first time attending “big church” and at one point he whispered loudly to me, “I don’t like this!” — so we may have a ways to go before he’s able to sit through the service with us. Steve took him home right after the baptism because we had discovered the day before that he had hand foot and mouth disease … which we discovered on Sunday afternoon that Anna also had. The whole week was pretty miserable:

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They both had cases so severe it looked like they had come down with chicken pox, and poor Anna had it in her throat. They were both understandably miserable, and Steve and I had several tough nights in a row first with Will and then with Anna, but they bounced back and for a while they both looked a lot worse than they felt. We were both so glad to have that behind us, and we were thankful also that they didn’t both have a bad night at the same time! They were considerate enough to take turns. Such nice babies.

The week after hand foot and mouth disease, I came down with mastitis. I had a mild case of it when Anna was about a month old, but this time I felt like I had been hit by a truck. After a day and a half in bed with a fever the antibiotics kicked in, and thankfully ever since we’ve all been healthy. I hear that once you have mastitis you’re more prone to it in the future, so I’m just hoping I won’t get it again.

Other stuff:

Books:

The Tenant of Wildfell Hall (Bronte): I really enjoyed this. I thought Helen was a good companion to Jane Eyre, in that she too is a woman who faces serious moral quandaries and looks to her convictions and faith for guidance, instead of her emotions. And I really liked Gilbert Markham — the Brontes aren’t particularly known for their humor, but I thought Gilbert would have fit right into a Jane Austen book.

Now I’m about halfway through The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up, which has been on my to-read list for a while. It’s a good read so far, but that’s partly because I feel inspired to clean up my act, and because I think Marie Kondo is unintentionally hilarious. I will write more about it when I finish. In the meantime I’ve KonMari’d my dresser and both kids’, and I think I’m a convert. I need an uninterrupted weekend to tackle her advice about paper and miscellany, though.

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(Does my garish old kimono spark joy? YES. IT STAYS.)

Up next: I have a copy of The Spirit Catches You and You Fall Down on my bedside table that I checked out of the library over a month ago, so I should get on that, huh.

On my mind:

I have been thinking a lot about my long term goals lately, and how I don’t really know what they are. In the meantime, I am very much enjoying my day-to-day. Will finished his year of 2’s preschool, so we’re untethered to a schedule for the summer. I think I am going to have to impose some kind of routine on us (/develop a new rhythm for the summer) so we don’t find ourselves lolling around on the floor in our pajamas at 3 p.m. Neither Will nor I moves particularly fast in the mornings, but I am going to have to find a way to get us moving.

Anna still wakes up once most nights and I think the interrupted sleep is still taking a toll; I still oftentimes feel like I’m two steps behind in most aspects of my life, but it is starting to get a little better — or perhaps it can get better now because I’m becoming annoyed by how behind I always feel. I feel like I’m stuck in a cycle where I’m behind because I’m so tired and I have no energy, but I’m too tired to get up and get moving so I can catch myself up. It’s frustrating.

Other stuff:

– Related to the above: I’m tired of feeling disappointed in myself, so a few weeks ago I signed up for a 6 a.m. spin class on a whim. I’ve been twice, it is hard as hell, but I am going again tomorrow. It has been a great encouragement to feel like I can meet a challenge again (I have struggled a lot with feeling like I keep falling short of the mark lately, setting goals and then being unable to meet them), and it’s an empowering way to start the week. Plus it’s a lot easier to get to the gym without two small kids in tow.

– We got our garden in! We opted for containers this year because we need to till and condition the soil in the raised bed we’re going to use in the future. Here’s how it looks:

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This was taken twelve days ago. Since then the tomato in the back has about tripled in size, as has the lettuce. The two large containers are green beans and cucumbers. The green beans were all two inches tall and looking great yesterday, but Buddy (who likes to lounge out on the deck) ate them all! I was heartbroken but thankfully I had more seeds, so I pulled up what was left of my beautiful seedlings and planted more. I have netting over everything, but I need to put sticks in the containers as well to keep the netting off the seedlings and doing a little more to keep nosy cats out of the way. (And to think I thought my plants would be safe from pests up on the deck …!)

Every year I learn a little more about the garden and every year I enjoy it more and more. I have also been out in the yard pulling up this invasive vine that’s taken over my side yard, and you know, I find yard work immensely satisfying. It’s been great to be out in the sun. This is a good thing, since our yard still needs a ton of work in the next few years.

– Anna is now almost eight months old:

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She’s such a fun little baby, and still so easy. She really wants to crawl and is almost there, so my days of being able to put her down and trust her to play contentedly with what’s in front of her are very limited.

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(She had to nap in the rock n play when she was sick. She was so big her feet stuck out, but it got the job done! Poor baby. As you can see, though, she enjoyed it.)

We also had a visit from Steve’s sister and her family, which was a lot of fun — we went to the UVA grounds for a visit, which is an area of town we don’t get to very often.

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We also participated in the time-honored tradition of strawberry picking a few weeks ago:

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I actually LOVE berry picking and can easily pick 15 pounds by myself. But with little kids in tow, we got about 6 pounds and then I bought 7 pounds more to make jam (which I still haven’t done …). Two years ago I made a huge batch of strawberry jam that lasted until this past February, and while I don’t anticipate canning 27 jars this year, I have been missing my homemade jam. I think I might go again tomorrow for more berries, because I haven’t had enough strawberry shortcake this spring and strawberry season is almost over.

Onward to June! I’m hoping that by this time next month I’ll be feeling a little less behind and a little more organized, but honestly I think I say that every month. KonMari, take me away!

Linking up with Leigh Kramer.

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