November Update

I am way way behind on blogging over here, and I won’t be able to update as often now that I’ve started TWO new blogs. One is Writerland, currently at, but still experiencing growing pains. The other doesn’t really exist except on my computer, so I’ll hold off on advertising it for now. I’ve been BUSY lately. I have been:

1. Blogging every weekday at
2. Reading three books: one novel, one vook and one blogging for Dummies book
3. Going to kid birthday parties (and shopping for presents for each) EVERY weekend
4. Running: I ran 3.6 miles three times this week and made it the third time without walking any of it! (It’s pretty hilly.) I want to do a half marathon in March, but won’t be disappointed if that doesn’t happen.
5. Querying agents. Several rejections. Four more have the full manuscript, and I need to get five more queries out this week (but first I have research to do)
6. Working on getting my website redesigned
7. Have been scanning photos for my new blog. It’s going to be modeling-/French-related – a supplement to my book
8. Spending time with Oona and Shea: taking a few pictures, updating the baby books, going to French playgroup and moms’ group and parks. Have been with both to Fairyland, the zoo, the botanical gardens in Tilden, the Bay Area Adventure Museum …
9. Cooking some (some weeks I cook a ton and others hardly at all)
10. Watching Mad Men (over now) and Dexter and The Office – I’m one episode behind on Dexter and The Office
11. Trying to remain sane.

About number 11—this weekend was tough. Last weekend I was out jogging and stumbled across this yard sale that had a “Free” sign on a bulletin board, and I thought, “I could use that bulletin board,” but upon closer inspection, I saw that there was a photo on the bulletin board for a children’s playset. Long story short, Martin spent this weekend dismantling the playset and lugging it to our house while I had to watch both kids by myself. Oona barely slept, and when she did for just 30 minutes and always when Shea was awake, so I never got a break. It was a bit hellish. By the end of the day yesterday I was racing out the door to tutor at the pub, where the first thing I did was down a cup of sake. Today was no better, although outings in the mornings and tutoring sessions at night did give me somewhat of a break. This morning we went to a birthday party at a bounce house place where they had these big inflatable slides and obstacle courses. Finally a bounce house that allows adults inside! It was really fun.

When I was about seven months pregnant, I talked to a woman at the park (I meet/talk to a lot of people at the park! This afternoon I talked to my neighbor’s friend about Berkeley schools, to some French guy about the French school, to some other guy about how to cook quinoa and about this parenting book he was reading …) about what it was like to have two kids who are pretty close together, like hers were. She told me, “Your life is going to be hard for a couple of years, and then it’ll get better.” It’s hard to define “hard.” It sounded scary when she said it, awful even. Part of me felt, “No, she’s wrong. It won’t be awful” and part of me felt, “OMG, what have I done?” So now that two and a half months have passed, I can say, yes, life right now is very hard. It’s not bad, though, not awful. Just hard. Hard meaning I have almost no time to myself except for the hours I am paying $17 to a babysitter. That adds up really quickly. $17 to go running. $17 to take a shower and make and eat lunch. Another $17 to go grocery shopping and run an errand or two. $17 to blog. $17 to check e-mail and read other blogs. The evenings are getting a little better now that Oona is awake more during the day and going to bed earlier at night, but my problem is that it’s often 9:30 or 10 before I get any time to myself and then I don’t want to go to sleep because I want to read or e-mail or blog and, before I know it, it’s midnight and then I’m up twice in the night, sometimes for 30-60 minutes, feeding Oona, and then I’m TIRED the next day. But to get to bed early and get a decent amount of sleep, I get NO time to myself.

What else is hard? Housework. It doesn’t end. I finally got ALMOST all of the laundry from Friday folded and put away today and then threw three more loads into the wash. There is a neverending pile of unfolded laundry on our couch! And dishes to wash, and toys to pick up, and … and … and …

But it’s fun, too. Oona’s a cutiepatootie. She smiles all the time, and does these little stomach crunches when you tickle her and has started cooing and making razz sounds. Shea is nonstop entertainment. He calls me “Meghan” now, which drives me nuts, but he’s hellbent on saying it, so I just have to let it go. He is saying little sentences, like “I have a book” and “Green ball go get it Papa up there. He speaks more in English than in French, but he understands both and can say most words in both (and in Spanish, but mostly around Dolores.) He mixes them up all the time, like he’ll say, “Dos chairs” or “Petit cow.” He loves cooking and has to drag a chair into the kitchen to help every time we start to make dinner. He likes to help clean, too. He still loves balls and this week is into juggling and diving from the coffee table onto the couch. He does random things, like today he put three balls on the sofa and covered them with a towel and said, “balles chaudes” (hot balls, he was warming them up), then he lifted the towel and said, “blow on it” (because they were hot, he had to blow on them to cool them down.) Like I said, nonstop entertainment!

We are spending Thanksgiving at Martin’s mom’s and Christmas Eve, too. I have already bought some Christmas presents. Every year I decide I want it to be a minimalist Christmas without a lot of gifts, and every year I buy one more, one more and one more until there are quite a few. I’m sure this year will be the same. All I want for Christmas is nook, but it’s sold out until Jan. 4. I’ve never been one to get electronic devices when they first come out, but there have been so many times recently that I really wanted to look at a book NOW and wished I could just download it and not order it from the library and wait until it comes in, then go pick it up, or pay $15-$27 for it at the bookstore. I think the age of print books is rapidly coming to a close.

And just for fun, I started writing a sci-fi novel last night. It’s really just a FUN project and not meant to be my “next book” (I have other books I want to write to sell), and it feels good to write for fun again. I know nothing about sci-fi, but this is a book I’ve been thinking about for a while. What’s that expression? If you want something done, ask a really busy person? I get that. You get into such a crazy busy-all-the-time mode that you never have enough time to wind down. It’s just go go go go go all the time. Craziness. And now I have to go to bed because I have to go to court in the morning to get the money this scheister who sold us our hot tub owes us. It’s 10 o’clock, and I’m about to turn into a citrouille. (l learned the difference between a potiron and a citrouille – two French words for pumpkin – this Halloween!)

And that’s the update. Bonne nuit a tous!


1 Comment

Filed under Family, Motherhood, Writing

One response to “November Update

  1. Don’t forget to add “more bacon” and “I call it bacon”.. when Shea sees bacon 😉 – We have proof!

    I hope the age of print books never comes to a close- while I read a lot of articles and news online – i still like to read a “paper” book, when what I am reading is more than a few pages long.. I hope they become equally popular on parallel platforms and may knowledge spread faster.

    Good luck with all your chores!

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