Five for Friday {November Edition}


My last post featured skeletons and now we are less than a week away from Thanksgiving. November has flown by for our family – I can’t believe it is already the 20th! Isn’t 2020 supposed to be the slowest year that ever existed? We’ve been enjoying the fluctuating weather in Chicagoland and there have been a few nights where the wind from Lake Michigan has woken us up at night – it is reminiscent of our time on Lake Ontario in Sackets Harbor when we were stationed up at Fort Drum way back when. We’ve had a few snow flurries but we’re still waiting for the first storm of the season. After the bust of a winter we had in Washington DC last year, we’re keeping our fingers-crossed for snow (and lots of it!).

In celebration of Friday and keeping things simple, I’ve decided to write about five things that popped into my head this morning. I really hope to use these slower winter months to write more and streamline my social media consumption. Blogging has always been my favorite form of social media and I hate that it has fallen to the wayside to Facebook and Instagram. So without further ado, here are five topics that popped into my head this morning…

Christmas decorations. I love Thanksgiving but I’ve never decorated for the holiday because why put up turkeys and rustic ‘gather’ signs when Christmas decorations are sitting in Rubbermaid bins just begging to be displayed? Due to our frequent moves, our Christmas stash is limited to 4 {large} bins but 2020 has me throwing my minimalist holiday decor tendencies out the window. I’ve officially purchased more Christmas decorations this November than I have in the past five years…we’re going to need another bin. I plan to do a Christmas decoration tour of our house in the next couple of weeks because our new base housing has been a lot of fun to decorate – we finally have a fireplace again!

Family Game Nights. Our kids were able to participate in fall sports this fall – soccer, baseball, and gymnastics – while adhering to social distancing practices and wearing their masks. We signed both kids up for winter sports – gymnastics and arena football – knowing that the season would likely be cut short due to the Chicago area spiking in cases. Unfortunately, we received word this week that their programs are paused because our area is experiencing an outbreak. It stinks but it is what it is. The kids are disappointed but they’re making the best of the hand they’ve been dealt – they rock! One silver lining of the cancelled sports seasons is that we now have time for family game nights on weeknights. We’ve been playing a lot of Ticket to Ride, Clue, and Bananagrams – now that our daughter can read on her own, we’ve been able to open up our game repertoire. If you have any recommendations for family-friendly games for kids ages 7+, I’d love to hear them.

Steroids. Over the years, I’ve struggled auto-immune responses that baffle medical professionals but thankfully end up resolving themselves with time and do not result in a life-altering diagnosis. I’m currently in knee-deep in one that is little more than a nuisance but it does have me examining my health and wellness routine with a bigger magnifying glass than usual. Thankfully I was able to meet with a medical professional in a virtual appointment and I’m hopeful that a simple round of steroids will alleviate this particular flare up. A million things are theorized to cause an autoimmune response, including stress (and lord knows this has been A YEAR) so while it my response likely isn’t caused by food, caffeine, or alcohol – I admit that I could make some healthier choices because when I feel better, I do better. My workout regime is on point but I should probably pay more attention to my sleep (or lack there of) and my caffeine and alcohol intake.

Kindle Paperwhite. A few months ago, when Clay asked me what I wanted for Christmas I immediately answered, “a Concept 2 rower” because we 100% jumped on board with the home gym trend in 2020. We’re on the waitlist and our estimated order date might ensure it arrives before Christmas – not that it really matters…I’m just excited to add another piece of equipment to the garage. Because it is difficult to wrap a rower that may or may not arrive by Christmas, I suggested that I’d also like a new Kindle. One of my goals is to read more books instead of spending my free time reading articles and scrolling through social media on my phone. I have a Kindle that is 10 years old and showing its age – it’s practically a fossil. I think the new Kindle Paperwhite will meet all of my e-reader needs without breaking the bank.

Professional Goals. And finally, I’ve been really enjoying my job as late and I’ve had a lot of opportunities for growth and personal professional development. I’m incredibly thankful I’ve been able to continue to work remotely despite PCSing and while my hours have increased (hence the lack of writing here), the work is exciting, interesting, and most importantly – impactful. I’ve been examining my professional goals over the past few months and fine tuning my 5-year plan. I’m excited to discover what is next for me on the horizon and to continue to challenge myself professionally.

4 comments on “Five for Friday {November Edition}”

  1. I’m glad you’ve stayed busy with work and that it’s been consistent and challenging through your PCS! I think that’s a huge bonus in 2020’s uncertain times. I’m sorry to hear you’ve been struggling with some auto-immune responses. I’ve struggled, as well, since my Lyme diagnosis last year and subsequent treatment. Here’s hoping things improve! And YAY for a kindle! I love mine!


  2. Do you follow Young House Love on Instagram? They are a great DIY blog, but have two kiddos (about Mike and Layla’s ages I think) and always post good games. I think they may have them saved in an Instastory highlight.

    Also — you look exactly like Meg to me in that second to last pic 🙂


  3. I was treated for Lyme in the 8th grade after getting a bullseye rash after a tick bite. Good times. And yes – I am so thankful for my job. It is nice to have a sense of professional fulfillment…it isn’t always guaranteed as a military spouse.


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