The Weekly Recap: viruses, spiders, and other ramblings

My Get Up and Go is a No-Go…

As for the physically healthy lifestyle, this week is a wash. I really didn’t even buy groceries this week, with the exception of a few essentials liked boxed mac and cheese, bacon, and another bag of candy corn pumpkins. Don’t expect to see us on the cover of any healthy eating publications any time soon.

Also, whether it be allergies or a bona fide cold virus, I do not know or care. But I do care a great deal that I have not been able to breathe out of my left nostril for 2 days. When I am blessed with a few seconds of fresh air, it is only because the left side of my nose has decided to drain in a way that makes me think that this is what it would be like if the Hoover Dam cracked right down the middle. This grossness has led to absolutely zero physical activity.

The Job…

I just finished the last week of training for my new responsibilities at work. Next week, the training wheels are off, or more accurately, out of state and only accessible by phone rather than sitting next to me and holding my hand through raw data sets, excel spreadsheets, and computer language. I’ll be flying solo from here on out, and I’m suppressing the panic and will remain in a blissful state of denial until Monday.

The Family…

I have been determined for a really long time, pretty much forever, to get back to eating as a family at the table without TV or smart phone. I have not been intentional about actually bringing this about. Recently, I had the pleasure of hearing Darryl Strawberry speak, and the message he delivered about getting back to the family table had me deeply convicted and ready for the altar call. Still, I didn’t make it happen.

Somehow, some way, this very week it just kind of happened organically. On the day this spontaneously came about, we had eaten pizza for breakfast, so I made breakfast for dinner that evening. We were in the kitchen together, hanging out, and we just naturally moved into the actual dining area as the food finished. When we sat down to eat, we realized that we should probably pray over our food, and so May Lee led the blessing. It hit me in my gut right then that we have really been longing for this. This is important, and it is imperative that we continue. So, we’ve spent every evening in the kitchen together preparing whatever it is that we have decided to feast upon (mac and cheese, anyone?) and then sitting down at the table. This practice has already evolved into other things, such as each evening we select “dinner music” to play in the background. So far, we have enjoyed the stylings of Nora Jones and The Beatles. It’s also become a time for us to look at her school folder together, instead of me just hastily slapping a signature on it and quickly returning it to her backpack. Now, she gets to show me each page and tells me about her day in the process. After all of that, we clean up together, and then it is time for the typical bedtime routine. It has been absolutely wonderful to spend the entire evening together throughout the week. One of the lovely byproducts of this newly forming habit has been an overall reduction in parental guilt, and who doesn’t need that?!

The Home Front….

As others welcome the arrival of fall with overflowing pots of beautiful, golden mums and yard displays of hay bales and scarecrows, the same pot of dead petunias remains on my porch. The decaying remains of my summer plants are still visible in my front flower bed. I make no promises that this will change at all until spring, but perhaps I’ll string some Christmas lights over the mess come December.

blackwidow
Hello, Black Widow

In other house-related news, we are just so blessed to be greeted with a new variety of spider on at least one morning each month. Our first guest was this very large black widow. Yesterday morning, we opened the door to find this fine creature on the doorstep. Google tells me that it is a wolf spider with a whole host of babies on this back. A WHOLE ARMY OF WOLF SPIDER BABIES. Typically, I don’t freak out over spiders. I can be ok sharing space with a spider. I have chased down tarantulas while hiking, to the point that the spider jumped at me because I was getting on his spider nerves. BUT, wolf spiders I do not care for. We have history. Years

wolfspider
Generations of Wolf Spiders

ago, as I innocently slept in my bed, I was bitten by a wolf spider in the middle of the night. I didn’t realize this until a small spot on my arm continued to grow to the size of a quarter. I finally went to the doctor who recognized it right away, and several days of antibiotics and steroids later, I was fine. But the wolf spiders and I still have beef. Therefore, I declare publicly that should that spider cross my path again, he or she will be sleeping with the fishes. Capeesh?!

 

 

Things I Enjoyed This Week…

tips

Mr. Postman. I have visited him once a week since I have discovered the treasures that lie within. He is my new coffee dealer. And this sign only confirms what I already know in my heart: these are my people. I belong at Mr. Postman with all the other lovers of coffee, coffee related decor, and mailing things and the avoiders of awkward physical contact.

Walgreen’s 50% off of all things photos. I kid you not, I have already made and picked up my Christmas cards and ordered the address labels for them. Also, I finally printed the pictures to put in the empty frames to hang on my empty walls. By all means, go forth and save on all your photo needs. I think the sale ends today, so get cracking. The code at checkout is FAVORITE50.

Soothe Lotion. May Lee put a pretty good sized boo-boo on her face this week. We put the Soothe lotion on it before bed, and the next morning it was noticeably better. We’ve put it on 3 times total, it is amazing how quickly it is healing up. We had the same experience with this lotion on her first eczema outbreak for the year, so we have high hopes for this lotion getting us through the winter! It’s a Rodan + Fields product, so you’ll need to go through a consultant to get a hold of it. If you don’t know a consultant, you can contact Alison at aekuepker@gmail.com. She’s family, so you know she’s good people.

The chicken tortilla soup at Burrito Day. I have already horrified you with the details of my cold, so we won’t go there again other than to say that it inspired me to order the soup. Even with the funky taste buds that come with illness, it was packed with flavor and absolutely delicious. A definite go-to meal for sick days, but I can’t wait to try it again with a healthy palette. Also, the mango tea- YUM. I helped myself to 2 glasses.

Peebles Farm. A friend came into town last weekend, and we took the kids out there for fall fun, with hopes of catching some cute pics and some uninterrupted time to talk. It delivered. My child ran about chasing kittens and my friend’s child found his personal heaven in the shed that was fully equipped with every piece of toy farm equipment a boy could dream about. We also did the hayride and enjoyed finding the faux alligator heads and herons placed throughout the marsh. There was also a very real eagles nest “the size of a bathtub” as described by man next to us in full Arkansas accent. I do love the local flavor. 

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