Shoot me now.

So.

I’ve been back at work for a month and things are settling into a routine. Clara is gaining tons of weight and turning into such a funny little girl. I really love this age. She’s close to sitting, she’ll stand holding onto the crib rail if I put her there, and she’s become so aware of the world that it can be a struggle to get her to eat, or to sleep, or to just relax for a few minutes so Mommy can pee!

At the same time, work has gotten pretty busy for me, and I’m finding it hard to get everything done that needs to get done. Between my commute, pumping, dinner-making and baby feeding, and, oh yes, sleep, my free hours for working are just about equal to the hours I need to be billing* and, as any lawyer will tell you, you always work more hours than you actually bill.

On top of all of this, we just put an offer in on a house, right before we’re heading out of town for Clara’s baptism. The seller wants the inspection done before the weekend so that if we decide to pass on the house, she can remarket it this weekend, which means I am now scheduled to spend half of my day tomorrow — a day in which I need to get some serious work done before taking off several days — at the house with the inspector. I have no idea when I’ll manage to pump, because I have to go from the inspection straight to a meeting at another firm, and I can hardly get there and bug out for 20 minutes to pump in a strange location. Oh, and then I need to leave work early anyway to pick up the dress I plan to wear for the baptism, and then take the dog to the kennel before 7, and pack, and get the baby in bed at a reasonable hour so we can leave for the airport early on Thursday morning….

In other words, f**k.

I keep telling myself that if everything works out — if the inspection is clean, if I manage to make my meetings, if I get the dress picked up and the dog dropped off and everything packed — it’ll be really amazing to go home and visit family knowing that we will be closing on this great house in a month or so. And if it doesn’t, I’m going to be really pissed that I’ve given an inspector $450 to look at a house I’m never going to live in.

And how is your week going?

* This is a bit misleading; my firm doesn’t have a strict hours requirement. I’m actually referring here to the actual amount of work I have to do to get stuff done for my clients rather than the amount of work my firm expects me to do.

And I wonder why I hate people.

So my great growing tomatoes?

Someone came and ripped (literally) my two big (still green) brandywines right from the vine. Like, the stalk where they were hanging is all shredded — this person just tore them off with their hands, I guess. Now my brandywine plant doesn’t have any fruit at all.

People really suck, is what I’m trying to say.

A brief annoyance.

Our church has switched to a summer schedule, going from three services (8:00, 9:00, and 11:00) to two (8:00 and 10:00).  This, frankly, sucks. We usually go to the 11:00 service, which allows us to get up around 8:30 and spend a leisurely hour having breakfast and coffee before getting ready and driving over. Now our leisurely Sunday morning hour has suddenly disappeared.  I realize that when this baby comes, that 8:30 wake-up time — and lazing about — will seem sinfully indulgent, but for now, we really like our Sunday morning lie-in.  The result is that we’ve skipped more church than we’ve gone to in the last month and a half. Sigh.

(NB: We managed to make it this morning, but I think purely out of guilt.)

Growing (green) things

I generally consider myself to have a black thumb — I kill plants. I have had any number of indoor and outdoor plants over the many years, and I have managed to kill every single one of them. And it’s not even that I kill them through neglect — I’ve killed plants that I was actively trying to nurture. I’m just not good at it. I lack the plant gene.

Except that somehow, I am now growing tomatoes. And mint. And cilantro (or I was, until it bolted, which I didn’t even know was a Thing until I read up on the internet about why my cilantro was flowering and creating seeds).

Now, the mint I can’t really take much credit for — in this part of the country, mint grows wild pretty easily, so I hoped that if I just stuck it in the ground, it would take care of itself. And it has. But tomatoes are just not that low-maintenance. Or at least I didn’t think they were. In my case, though, they really are growing themselves. I throw some water on them every few days if it hasn’t rained and otherwise leave them mostly alone.

Except that they are now so tall that they were really starting to droop. So today, I took myself and my black thumb over to Home Depot and bought tomato stakes (which…! I bought useful gardening implements? Who is this person?), came home, and spent an hour in the mid-afternoon sun (bad call on my part) staking and tying my oversized, out-of-control tomatoes.

Anyway, y’all. After I staked up those plants I realized — my tomatoes are INSANE. They are nearly as tall as I am and they are fruiting like mad. Like, I expect to have pints and pints and pints of Yellow Pear cherry tomatoes in just a few short weeks, when the several bunches of green fruit start to ripen. The other tomato plant — a Pink Brandywine — is not fruiting quite as madly (it’s not known for being as prolific, probably because it produces enormous fruit) but it’s still doing far, far better than I ever dreamed.

I don’t know how much of this gardening luck is due to where we live — after all, this area doesn’t get the temperature extremes that Austin or Chicago, my last two cities, experience — and how much of it is due to the fact that my in-laws, who do have the plant gene, were here to help us when we decided to put in a garden. Whatever it is, though, I’m enjoying it, even as I stare, bewildered, at the green things I am managing to grow.

 

How I spent my day off

I wish it were acceptable for me to only bill four hours a day, every day, because today was perfect: I did some work this morning, from the couch, in my jammies; then I went to the gym for a leisurely workout; and finally, I stopped by Pier 1 for some needed home decor items (that were on clearance, yay!). Now I’m in sweats, watching Law & Order and sipping a glass of wine. Seriously, can every work day be like this, not just the days when the office is closed?

Here are some obligatory photos of the home decor items:

(We got the vase for Christmas, but it needed something just right to go in it. I find it a little strange that I am now one of those people who has an arrangement of greenery on permanent display in my living room.)

(We needed something to sit on the “cocktail ottoman” that we could rest drinks in, as well as a place to collect the various remotes — TV, cable box, receiver, Apple TV. Too many devices, y’all. Bonus shot of the dog!)

Stay-at-home wifely adventures, Day 2

I have unpacked the rest of the books. All books now live on shelves. No books live near their natural book friends (except my cookbooks, which Mr. D. kindly collected on the shelf nearest the kitchen). The disorganization of the books bothers me but I’m not sure I have the energy to deal with it right now. Maybe after we have everything else in place I can think about reorganizing the books.

In better news, though, I am pretty much finished with the master closet. I even unpacked Mr. D.’s shoes. I still need to reorganize my dresser — and we still need to buy another dresser because we don’t have enough space for all of our clothes — but things are more or less put away.  Except scarves, gloves and hats — and I am really dreading figuring out where those things will live and how they’ll be organized. My standard “throw them all in a pile near the door” method isn’t going to work here, unfortunately.

It’s definitely starting to look (and feel) more like home around here. But it’s not going to be totally comfortable until we have seating in the living room — which means furniture shopping this week. Wish us luck finding a couch we can both live with.

Countdown

I spent the lovely long weekend with Mr. D., in our new city, in our new home. We unpacked, we put together furniture, we cooked, we watched TV…it was fantastic. I love our rental house — it’s spacious without being cavernous, it has lovely old touches, it fills with light in the afternoon and, notwithstanding some issues with the air conditioner after a hot afternoon, it’s very, very comfortable.

But now I’m back in Chicago. And I like Chicago, I do. But I’m back here in my box of a studio, listening to the window unit rattling against the window that lets in no light, laying on a saggy mattress set just on the floor, and staring at the dingy carpet…and I’m missing my husband.

Seventeen days.