The Gift of 24 Hours

Photo: Sitting in the command seat plottin’ menus and shopping lists and tasks to be done… you know I love that sort of stuff! Tis the season to stay organized!

The Husband took the boys to Connecticut on Saturday and didn’t come back until Sunday afternoon.

And I?

I partied like it was 2010 (also known as the year before there were babies)!!!

And by “partied,” I mean that I enjoyed a quiet house, I enjoyed not talking to anybody, I enjoyed cooking for myself, and I enjoyed figuring out just how much I could get done for myself in 24 hours without being hindered any other obligations.

It was pretty damn glorious. My only regret: Not making myself curry chicken instead of the big (and quick) bowl of pasta that I did. No one in the house loves curry but me, and I should have seized the opportunity! Next time…

I have thought about who I would be right now if I didn’t have a husband or children, and I’ve concluded that I would not be this efficient. I’d live in a life without time (or maybe without time outside of the usual 9-5 window) but otherwise I’d feel very little urgency to get anything done within a reasonable time frame. To have husband and children, to always have to prioritize their tasks first before I can get to my own, I’ve mastered the art of managing a bunch of projects at once, getting them done well, and then quickly pivoting to the next thing (so that I can have a reasonable amount of time to enjoy the things I want to do).

So from Saturday to Sunday, I was busy. Gloriously, gloriously busy!

My mother scolded me about this yesterday as we were getting off of the phone (I had to talk to her about the death of former DC Mayor Marion Barry). I rattled off some of the items I was going to cram in before the boys got back. “You should just go sit and be for a few minutes. Don’t think about the things you have to do, think about the things you want to do.”

“Yes, Mom,” I replied out of obligation. But I was screaming in my head, “are you crazy!?” and when I got off the phone, I very happily scampered off to the next task that I can never seem to get done right when children are around.


Don’t get me wrong, there was plenty of sitting and being. I needed to catch up on Scandal (amazing) and How to Get Away with Murder (amazing) and House of Cards (exceptionally amazing)… and there was much knitting to be done (I’ve completed the first part of the prototype of my adjusted pattern and I’m pleased already). And the writing? Oh the writing! I got so much writing done! Meadowlark part 4 was drafted yesterday morning before 9am! I’ll “win” NaNoWriMo sometime tomorrow!

When my husband got home yesterday with the boys, the first thing he asked me was, “did you get any sleep?”

He knows me very well. He knew that the answer would be “no.”

I was too excited about my time to waste it on a mid-day nap. It was very tempting to get some winks on the comfy couch in the living room, jazz as my soundtrack, but I had some set things that I really wanted to get done before I could veg out so I kept it moving instead. By midnight, I was tired, but it doesn’t matter how much my rational brain yelled at me about being afraid in my own house: every pop and creak and crack and groan that this old house made in the night woke me up in an instant. Which was fine. I knew that was going to happen. So I went to bed at midnight, got out of bed at 4:30, and at 5 I got to drink coffee and watch my pet fox hunt mice in the front yard.

The bonus after getting everything I wanted to done? Christmas cards designed and ordered, with a 55% off coupon from Snapfish. Got the good paper this year, too! Boom!

Best 24 hours ever! Since 2010, anyway. I was like, “when are you going back!? Next weekend??”

And now it is Thanksgiving week. I’ve been to two out of four grocery stores already. I still have Whole Foods and Stop and Shop to get to, and then I need to head over to my favorite liquor store again because I have found my favorite stout. My favorite stout!

I must explain: I have randomly become the leader of a little mom’s group at the preschool. We get together once a month on a Friday night to eat and drink and congregate. It’s been nice. This month was my month to host (which was nice, because we christened the new dining room). I mentioned that it was stout season in the organizing email and my friend brought over this wonderful stuff called Milk Stout Nitro from Left-Hand Brewing Company. You must try this beer. It is smooth like butter and it is delicious and the head on this thing is just heavenly. The Harpoon that I wrote about last week is good, but it’s swill compared to this stuff. She brought a 6-pack and left it for me.  I’ve never been one to drink. My max is usually 2 beverages in sitting. So the pack survived the weekend, but I know that this is  totally not going to make it through Thanksgiving weekend because The Husband is in love with it, too. So, I’ve gotta add another stop to my crazy pre-holiday shopping…

I really must say, I don’t love everything about Massachusetts, but I do sorta appreciate that beer culture around here is just as snobby as wine culture. There are a lot of great varieties available and it is fantastic to be able to sample so many. Seriously, though, if you are into bougie beer like The Husband and I are, you’ve gotta pick up that Milk Stout Nitro. And do what the instructions say about pouring it hard… oh my God. Amazing.

I’ll talk about the Thanksgiving menu and other such things on Wednesday. Might be a difficult blogging day because I learned there is no school on Wednesday. What!? Killing me! What am I supposed to do with these two children all day? And ya’ll know it’s supposed to snow here, right?

That’s the payment for my 24 hours of freedom… nothing in life is free.

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