Pandemic in Pictures: Coloring

I’m not saying we have tons of extra time like some childless couples do. But we do have long, long childful hours when we aren’t working, and we just learned that those hours will extend through the end of the school year. This means we’re thinking creatively, or maybe not-so-creatively, about how to spend All That Time.

Benji doesn’t naturally choose to draw or color carefully. He does enjoy drawing, filling (at a conservative estimate) thousands of random sheets of paper with doodles — but they’re all things like marble-race tracks, countries, or number blocks; all are based on YouTube videos he and Ian watch, and he does them all very hastily with a minimum of care. Continue Reading >>

Pandemic in Pictures: Neighborhood Scavenger Hunt

After getting some chores done (most notably, cleaning the fish tank; once again, the snail population continues to outpace our ability to contain it), I took Benji on a neighborhood scavenger hunt on Saturday afternoon. He never wants to go for walks, so I didn’t frame it as a walk, and I didn’t force him to go to a park to walk on trails.

Instead, Ian and I just created a very long list of items to find that required quite a bit of walking. We ended up spending nearly an hour outside, all told, and found all but one item (“An out of state license plate” — a bummer, since our next-door neighbors have a Corvette with Minnesota plates, but their garage door was closed so we couldn’t see it). Continue Reading >>

A Solo-na Bike Ride

I rode almost 75 miles alone today. Initially I didn’t really feel like going out at all, but the sun started shining about 9:00 and I decided I couldn’t waste a perfectly beautiful day. And, as always, I ended up not regretting any of it. (Helpfully, I didn’t get any flats.) I rode north to Snohomish, turned south and rode all the way down Snoqualmie Valley nearly to Fall City, and then came back home north along the Sammamish Valley, with one stop about 40 miles in at a grocery store in Carnation. In my head I dubbed it my “Down in the Valley” ride. Continue Reading >>

Pandemic in Pictures: Biking

I’m still riding outside, albeit alone and carefully (the last thing I want is to go to the emergency room!). Advantages of riding alone: I can stop for pictures any time I want.

Here was my ride yesterday:

Inside the Thunderstorm
I rode my fast bike, no fenders, and soaked through everything.

Here was today:

Sammamish Slough and Thunderheads
I rode my rain bike with full fenders and it never rained.

Pandemic in Pictures: A Little Harmless Chaos

Before we get to the chaos part, a little parenting vignette.

We had Benji scheduled to do a phone interview with a guy who’s doing a podcast of interviews with kids talking about their experience of coronavirus. My Uncle Gerard suggested it, and I think it’s a cool project. So we were doing it. (I’ll post more about it when Benji’s episode goes live on the podcast.)

Five minutes before the interviewer called, Benji decided he really, really didn’t want to do it. He started melting down into his spiral of resistant complaints, excuses, whining, and arguing. I didn’t have time to deal with all that crap — by then we were at T-minus three minutes and counting — so I went full scorched-earth bribery: “If you cooperate with this, you can have an ice cream sandwich for breakfast.” Continue Reading >>