When you hold me
In your arms so tight,
You let me know
Everything’s all right!
I’m hooked on a feeling…
Up at gone 8 again. The waking-up-early stages of the pandemic are well and truly over. Breakfasted quickly and got into work mode. In terms of that at least, an uneventful day, with a decent balance of meetings and decent chunks of time to get things done. The evening was the “Camp at Home” event being run by various scouting organisations, so spent a bit of time here and there getting Sleeper, Jr. to pack his bag to go “camping” complete with sleeping mat, changes of clothes, and so on. Can’t forget a teddy bear or a book to read in the dark by torchlight either.
Cooked pork chops for dinner with roast courgette, red onion, peppers and tomatoes for dinner. Both kids turned their noses up at the vegetables, much to my chagrin. After dinner, created a den in the playroom for sleeping in and got the kids in the bath. Eventually got the boy bedded down round 8:30; he was unsurprisingly still awake at 10 when we headed up.
One child woke around 7; she was told to go downstairs to watch TV quietly until we got up, and not to disturb her elder brother, who was unsurprisingly still asleep. He eventually surfaced about 7:45, not long after I got up. Despite claiming he’d slept well, I could see this wasn’t the case. He burst into tears when I told him he’d be sleeping in his own bed again tonight; he was absolutely exhausted. I did at least say the den could stay up a few days.
School work was no better; his concentration just wasn’t there and he didn’t do as well on his Maths as he usually would, and after an hour of staring at a blank sheet of paper with a title for English, we let him leave it until the next day. J put a movie on for the kids to watch – Inside Out – but he wasn’t interested, instead preferring to tinker with some Scratch program or other.
Penne bolognese dinner done, we got both the kids into bed fairly early and J and I had a decent chat; she’d found keeping a boy who’d had almost no sleep entertained and happy to be a herculean task. Finished up the evening with birthday drinks for F by way of Zoom, during which I managed to get a delivery slot from Decathlon to order a shiny new (cheapish) road bike. The twitter-rumour was they were released at 11pm, so, still up, I attempted to put in an order at bang on 11; no dice. Tried a few more times before I moved from Safari to Chrome out of frustration, and immediately managed to book a delivery. I can’t help wondering whether I’d have had better daytime luck with a different browser.
As usual, a lazy start. We had just about enough milk to see us through breakfast before the Ocado order arrived at about 9:30. By the time the kids were dressed and ready for the day, there was zero chance of me getting out on the bike before J’s online Zumba class, so I didn’t bother, instead taking them both outside to tend to the growing vegetables; of the four potato grow bags we started, two have taken off and the others are going remarkably slowly. Once the gardening, such as it was, was taken care of, I kicked a football around the lawn with them for a while before stopping for food.
After a lunch of sandwiches made with home made (non-sourdough) bread, I took Sleeper, Jr. out for a ride around the residential roads nearby. We managed five and a half miles, though my FitBit conked out at around the four mile mark, irritatingly.
Cooked a lasagne for dinner before packing both kids off to bed reasonably early. Despite not having gone mad with exercise, I was pretty tired. most likely due to the previous night’s festivities. Once they were both tucked in, stuck Star Wars: Rise of Skywalker on the TV – while I saw it at Christmas, J didn’t – she’d been at work while I’d taken the last day of the school holidays as a day off work to spend with Sleepr, Jr. I must have been pretty still; my fitness tracker registered me as asleep for most of the film. Pretty sure I wasn’t, but I was ready to be by the time the movie ended.
Up at around 8 again, got everyone breakfast then headed out for the long-overdue ride. Was cloudy and a little cool but I made decent time for the first eight miles or so, but then I started to get a headache and the first spots of rain started to hit. By the time I got home, the rain had passed but the headache hadn’t; nearly 14 miles is a decent bit of exercise at least, even if it’s short of what I’d intended.
Had a break for a cup of coffee then turned my hand to baking cookies with the kids. Knocked together a batch of egg-free chocolate chip cookies before lunch, discovering that you can tell a four year old to mix the dry ingredients and they’ll do it incredibly thoroughly while you measure out the wet ingredients. First few onto the sheet were way too big and fell apart when I tried to put them on a cooling rack post-baking; there was all around disappointment at my insistence that we had to wait for them to cool before eating.
“Dad, when can we play computer games again?” has been a regular refrain in recent days, so this afternoon we sat down and had a game of Super Mario Party followed by a quick championship of Mario Kart 8 Deluxe on the Switch. Hopefully that’s sated their desire for a while; Mario Party has the advantage that so much of it is RNG based that even the youngest member of the family has a chance of winning, as she did today. I could also cook coq au vin while playing – chop shallots, play my turn, chop carrots, play a mini game, and so on. Worked remarkably well and on the whole was a delicious dinner for very little effort.
Kids went to bed with minimal fuss; we chilled in front of the TV for a while before I headed up relatively early. Tomorrow, back to work…
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