Little Bit O’ Lagniappe [vol. 6]

Little Bit O' Lagniappe

Natural Beauty

I’m surrounded by natural beauty – most notably in the beautiful squishiness of our newest addition, Beckett. He was born on a very hot, humid August day – the feast of St. Dominic. The doctor was a bit late to the delivery because the elevator was out of order, and he almost arrived without her assistance. He’s a squishy, fat, bundle of love of which his older siblings can’t get enough.  I’m spending my maternity leave soaking in his goodness – the smell of his milky breath, the rolls upon rolls of baby fat, and the quiet calmness of his coos. I’m in awe of this little man.

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Stuck at Work for the Holidays

Have to work on a holiday

 

“Oh there’s noooooo place like wooooorrrrrrrk for the holidays…”

Wait.  That’s not how the song goes…

It can be difficult enough as a working mom to occasionally (or always!) deal with feelings of guilt and disappointment when dropping a child off at daycare or missing out on a poetry recitation at school, but these heart-wrenching emotions only intensify when that mom finds she is scheduled to work on a holiday or Holy Day.

Over the course of my working adult life, I’ve spent time in the retail and healthcare industries. Both are notorious for scheduling staff ’round the holiday clock. Granted, I think we all want there to be docs and nurses available if we have to rush a sick child to the ER on Christmas Day, but I’d be willing to bet a few of those folks are somewhat preoccupied by their waiting families at home – and with good reason. As for retail, REI made headlines this year when they announced they’d be closed on Black Friday. I’m not going to lie, this is a trend I hope will gather some major steam in the coming years. In the meantime, here are a few techniques I’ve picked up through working through the most special times of year – like that Good Friday four years ago where I spent the day at work fuming about missing the 3pm Veneration of the Cross. (I really identified that day with Christ’s lament, “Father, forgive them. They know not what they do [by making me work today.]” I mayormaynot be paraphrasing.) Continue reading

Family Fun Around the Dinner Table

It’s 2014, and I think our family is part of an estimated 3.7%* of the Western world’s population that still sits down at the table to eat supper together most nights of the week. (*I made that statistic up, but you get the idea.)  In our house, this phenomenon is made possible by what I like to call our “Perfect Storm of Availability”: tiny humans not yet overly involved in zany extracurriculars, a SAHD who cooks almost every night of the week, and a mom who works very reasonable hours and is home at roughly the same time each day.  I know that eventually, our family dynamic will change, and we won’t always eat together at one specific time every day of the week.  Still, it’s important to my husband and I that we make the family dinner a priority, especially as the kids get older and our schedules get busier.  I know that not every family has this luxury, and there are nights when Superman is at class and I am mighty tempted to just curl up on the couch with a bowl of cereal after the kids are  in bed.   Mostly, though, I look forward to our family suppers together.  We have a lot of fun at our dinner table, and it’s over food and beverage that our kids really open up and talk to us.  I love that food does that!  Think about it – when we grab a cup of coffee with a friend or go to happy hour with coworkers or celebrate a birthday – most of our most meaningful memories with friends and family revolve around food.  Our family table is no different.

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