As of September 2nd, 2018, I am…

Relieved by: so far being able to manage work, board memberships, volunteer efforts, and graduate school requirements. It’s not neat and tidy, and I have never felt my life so full, but so far I’ve tightened everything down and tried to awaken every ounce of discipline and keep myself on task. It’s working. Perhaps I’m a little bit surprised–but only because I’ve never had this many balls in the air. I won’t waste too much time bragging on myself, lest I drop one.

Grateful for: the last week of open pools. This swimming season has flown by. We switched our pool membership this year, opting for the local club pool instead of the rec center water park. Fewer of Kel’s students show up–not that it’s a bad thing, but just that it’s less relaxing when you’re mobbed by little people incredibly excited to see you. Looking back at what I’d written just a couple of months ago, it’s remarkable to see how far our kids have come as swimmers. Julia and Thomas have both earned their own passes; both jump off diving boards and into deep ends with nary a flotation device nearby. And Annie gleefully jumps in and doesn’t want to leave. I’ll be sad (especially since the weather’s still hot) to not have this as a destination. 

Also grateful for: the lurking autumn ahead. This weekend I mowed the lawn, and I gave it the fast-cut, not the careful, baseball stadium outfield job. In the next week or two, they’ll plug it and sow new grass, and it’ll be time to water and water and water, waiting for the new sprigs to appear. Hopefully all in time before the leaves all fall.

Enthused with: re-identifying myself as a student. It’s been a looooong time since I’ve sat on this side of the desk, but so far, I’ve enjoyed engaging with our reading and exploring new ideas. It’s nice to be in a classroom full of grown-ups (even if many of them are younger than me), and the discussions are welcome.

Working hard to keep: my exercise regimen. Next week it all spins into action: Jules and Thomas will be in school, and Annie starts back to preschool. I’m protecting the half hour I get each morning to jump on the machine and get sweaty. It’s good for me. I drink one less cup of coffee when I work out, and I feel inspired to drink a lot more water than usual.

Keeping an eye on: my need to take a Z-Quil. None of these “gentle sleep aids” are supposed to be habit-forming, but I’m the kind of person who resents having to take anything with regularity. I’ve found when I work on grad school stuff–reading, writing, thinking, etc.–deep into the night, my brain has a hard time turning itself off and going to bed. It’s in a productive mode. I take half a dose, and that’s usually more than enough to send me off and give me a good night’s rest. But I don’t like it. This weekend, I haven’t stayed up late doing work, and I haven’t had any problems.

Excited about: Labor Day Weekend. I needed this long weekend. Kel and I are going to dinner tomorrow night, and I’m excited to have the one-on-one time. During the summer, it was easy to take for granted all of the family time we shared. Now, even just two weeks into the craze of the academic year, it’s clear to see how little time we have to spend together and how important it is to make it worthwhile. We also started the new Jack Ryan series on Amazon with John Krasinski. Looks entertaining enough.

Testing sanity by: deciding to coach soccer again. WTH am I thinking?