Schedules of nurses are weird. They are irregular; different days every week, only a few days every week, but far more hours in each shift. That said, I love to have full days off on weekdays. Even if I don't have three days off in a row, it feels a bit like having three day weekends regularly. But this week, I happened to have SIX days off in a row, with no plans to speak of. Nicholas will still had to work, naturally, but for the part of my time off that overlapped the weekend, we planned a little stay-cation.
On Friday, we watched online lectures about all sorts of fascinating things (like personality development in children), while he worked and I knit. That night, we went to the movies, and I held his hand during the scary parts of Logan.
Saturday was rainy and windy (my favorite!) so our plans for hiking didn't pan out, but we did get coffee at one of our favorite coffee shops, and I wore a blanket-sweater and knit while I drank my coffee. Then we came home, changed back into comfy clothes, and took a nap together on the couch.
The rest of Saturday was filled with a ridiculous amount of knitting, lemon diffusing in the diffusor, heat packs for comfort and soothing sore muscles, and leftover chicken tacos.
Sunday was church and a mellow afternoon at home with watching (probably too much of) The Great British Baking Show. Folks, that show is totally my kind of show, preferably watched with a cup of tea and some knitting close by. I'll warn you that you might get invested (we did).
I took on a fairly adventurous baking endeavor when I made Fastelavnsboller, a Scandinavian sweet roll scented with cardamom, filled with hidden almond paste, and sandwiched with lightly sweetened whipped cream. I made them gluten-free, semi-successfully* just by substituting Cup4Cup flour. These were definitely a treat.
I wore a knitted shawl nearly every day, both inside and out, since it was chilly weather.
I finished knitting the first sock for our Sip Sip Knit-a-long, and I cast on for the second. I knit some on a gift project that I can't show just yet. And I added a few inches to my Arctic Cardigan, and now it's actually foldable.
I listened to worship music while chopping veggies for supper and texted girlfriends for encouraging scripture.
At the advice of a friend who knows my tendency for FOMO (fear of missing out), I did a little "Thankfulness study" everyday, where I wrote out things I was thankful for that day. The lists were diverse, but had a theme, at the same time. Basically, I really love the little extra moments with Nicholas and it's good for me to accept that this life, yes, this very one I'm writing about, is my portion in this time.
Do I think that I "missed out" by not going out of town? Actually, no. It was good for my always-doing-things self to give myself some time to take a nap or sleep in. These last several days off were for full devotion to a few things: good food, creative pursuits, quality time with Nicholas, and restful behavior. I slept past 9am on two of the days, did my yoga every day, and drank more water than I would if I had been working.
My stay-cation isn't over. Technically, I have ALL day today. And so far, it's turning into the ideal last-day. We're stepping (gently) back into routine with our weekly trip downtown for his meeting and my coffee shop. And tonight, we'll see some friends.
Praise Jesus for beauty and rest and a refilled loved tank in the midst of home.
*In my mind, they were successful, since we enjoyed them and the texture was pretty decent. But yeast interacts differently with a non-gluten dough, and it's difficult to determine how much to work the dough without overworking it. I used Cup4Cup flour, and on their website, they do not recommend using it with yeast, due to the above reasons. They were a bit "close-textured" (something I learned about on The Great British Baking Show!), but all that aside, we enjoyed them in all their lumpy glory ;)
A couple weeks ago, we celebrated nine years of marriage. Our anniversary was on a Wednesday, so the actual day was mostly routine, apart from a special celebratory fika in the afternoon with our favorite sourdough cinnamon rolls (always sans frosting and subbing in cardamom for half the cinnamon) and coffee. I showed Cooper pictures from our wedding day–something we hadn't done before actually– and it was fun for him to flip through the album and recognize familiar faces, including much younger mommy and daddy.
Towards the end of January, we celebrated Nicholas' birthday. It was a Wednesday, so the bulk of the day was normal, adult happenings. The day prior, I prepared the base for sourdough cinnamon rolls to long ferment. The morning of, Cooper and I finished making the rolls: we mixed, rolled, filled, sliced, and baked them. It was so sweet to make them together for daddy.
This past Tuesday, we celebrated eight years of marriage. It feels like I've spent so much of my life being Nicholas' wife, and also, I can hardly believe that our wedding day was eight years ago.