Thursday, October 12, 2017

The Most Romantic Dates


It’s been a few months since I talked about our date nights! Unless you’ve seen my constant Instagram stories, then you’re like, “OMG, please stop pushing your love in my face week after week after week.” You want to slap me.

Well clearly we need to discuss this again.

So here’s a quick update. Our babysitter is single/dating, so we go on weeknight dates so she has the weekends to herself. Chris and I take turns planning, and here’s list of my top three recent favorites. 

1. Roller skating 

Ha. It’s too ridiculous to call this romantic but I’m gonna. We have been intending to visit our roller skating rink for years, but we finally had to prioritize it when I found out the rink was shutting down. 

We were practically the only people there who had to rent skates; I’m pretty sure the fifty other patrons (including WEE CHILDREN) were preparing for the Olympics. I skated with the grace and confidence of a newborn deer, but Chris is secretly amazing at roller skating! It’s so embarrassing to say this, but it’s exciting for me to see him be surprisingly good at something new. What can I say? I am attracted to competence, even roller skating competence.

2. Bike picnic 

We live by a wildlife refuge, and I’m not saying it’s breathtaking beauty, but I think it’s a great place to live. One night we rode our bikes to the grocery store, bought a bunch of chocolate and cheese, and had a picnic on the reserve, looking over the bay. I was cold, and Chris gave me his jacket. It was a romantic in the most ordinary way.

3. Neighborhood walks 

Saved the Most Romantic one for last. Chris and I have always gone on neighborhood walks together. The summer after we got married, we took Sunday walks through neighborhoods where Chris used to live or work. He had lived here for like eight years, so these walks lasted almost four months.

Then, a few months ago, Chris drove us to a neighborhood I’d never been to before. It was this tree-lined neighborhood where -- I swear to you -- kids rode their bikes alongside their puppies, grandparents walked hand in hand, a flower-fragrant breeze filled the night air. Chris put his arm around my shoulders and said, “I think I’d like our family to live here.”

For me, there is something so magical about imagining your future together, so that night began a walking series where we started to walk around neighborhoods where we could buy a house someday.

Now, I don’t know what the future holds for the Perry family, but someday I might fall into a diamond mine and buy a home in the Bay Area.

b perry

p.s. Tonight we were going to go roast marshmallows at the Ritz Carlton in Half Moon Bay, but the fires! I can’t believe these fires… Stay safe everybody.

Wednesday, October 4, 2017

I got a job!

or: The story of how I filled out a W-9 for the first time in many years


This weekend I sent in my paperwork to be an independent contractor with a company in Utah to do copy writing for their creative team. It is the smallest job, and other than you, dear Internet, I haven't really told anyone. But I’m still super excited, and here’s the whole story.

Before I had my perfect babies, a woman at church was telling me about how she just started an administrative job at a middle school. She said she always knew she would eventually go back to work, she just didn’t know when. Then, when her youngest daughter was in seventh grade, she looked around her house one day and thought to herself, “Oh, I’m ready to start working again.”

That conversation has been immensely comforting to me over the years. When I was in law school, I did not imagine myself staying home with children. I wasn’t crazy about watching kids, and I liked legal work, so I figured if I got married and had kids, they would have a nanny. Then, of course, I had kids, and here I am blogging while they nap, so what did I know? After that conversation, I have not stressed out about when I will go back to work because I really believe that one day I’ll look at my life and feel like I'm ready.

Anyway, I had a tiny bit of that feeling earlier this year. I told Chris and my friend Whitney that I was thinking about freelance writing. A few months later Whitney sent me a link to a job opening, and she said I would be great at it. I applied. They hired me. So this is a success story in women helping women! Female empowerment. Hashtag feminism.

Anyway, I'm not practicing law, but I am using that BA in English! Woohoo! Also? Please share your work from home advice. When do you squeeze that in? Do you have a babysitter? How do you also exercise and go grocery shopping? We’ll see how this goes.

b perry

Wednesday, September 13, 2017

Eight picture books I *love* to read


One blessed day in my eighth grade drama class Ms. Morrel asked us to give a dramatization of any picture book we wanted. I embraced this assignment with a devotion approaching religious fervor, and I anticipated that my performance of The Princess and the Potty would remain the greatest dramatic reading of all time. And then, sadly, my talent remained in obscurity for twenty years.

Fortunately, bringing two children into the world allowed me to fulfill my hitherto secret lifelong ambition of becoming a universally beloved picture book performer. Of course my wee babies love to read together, but I’ll admit I am not “universally” beloved because, as you would expect, my husband is intimidated by my truly overwhelming gifts.

All this is to say: these are books that I love reading because I love animated narration.

Favorite books to read with Zoe - 15 months



Favorite books to read with Jack - just turned 3

please please share your favorites. we are never not checking out books from the library. 

b perry 

Wednesday, September 6, 2017

Preschool


A few years ago I read one of Billy Crystal’s memoirs. It has an essay about his daughter’s wedding, and I’ve been thinking about the closing paragraph lately.
They say the father of the bride gives his daughter away, but after searching my soul that day I knew that this wasn’t really accurate. For in truth, when you’re a father, at each milestone along the path, you’ve been giving them away piece by piece, little by little, their whole lives. 
Jack went to preschool this week. No, I don’t have a unique perspective on first day of school pains. And no, I’m not the only mom crying on the first day of school. But Jack and I have spent virtually all of our waking hours together over the last three years, and preschool feels like I’m giving so much away.

In the days leading up to the first day I distracted myself with back-to-school gifts for his teachers (Clorox wipes and fun pens), and what we would pack for his snack (apples, hummus, crackers), and what he would wear (see above). But when I finally dropped him off, it was a great time for me to have a short cry and really embrace the beginning of a new phase.

Growing up is hard and wonderful, and I’m so happy that I get to do it all again with these babies.

b perry

Wednesday, August 30, 2017

You're Only Three Once


Jack turned three yesterday. omg.

There’s so much I want to write down and remember, but I’ll just tell you the thing I’ll miss the most about having a two-year-old: developing language skills. For a few months he called backhoes “cocos.” And if something was “bloken” he would ask me to “fickit the blinds” or “fickit the van.” He loves to sing, and I love the names he has for songs, like, “By The Dawnzer,” Which is “The Star Spangled Banner” (“By the dawn’s early light”). Last week at bedtime he looked up at Chris and said, “Oh! I have an idea! It’s called juice!”

Language skills are tricky, but it’s so cute to hear him figure it out. Plus, the better he gets at communication, the easier it is for us to be happier together. Being two was hard sometimes (for both of us), but every day he gets sweeter. And Zoe will be two in nine months, so I’ll get to do two again soon.

b perry

Wednesday, August 23, 2017

Paint the Town


My boys went to Idaho for the eclipse last week, and I had so many ambitious goals. After one day of painting the town, Zoe started teething, and I decided to make the week more about her than me. We walked, ate ice cream daily, and when Zoe slept I read four books (1927, At Home, A Man Called Ove, and To Kill a Mockingbird) and cleaned the crap out of my house.

It has gotten me excited about Jack starting school in September, which I was dreading. Now it feels like a chance for me to have more time with her, instead of SOUL CRUSHING SORROW of sending my first baby to school.

b perry

Wednesday, August 16, 2017

Perspectives


If you follow me on Twitter or Facebook or Goodreads or if we have ever spoken in real life I hope you already know how I feel about Charlottesville. I cannot stop thinking about it. I’m reading To Kill A Mockingbird this week, and spending quality time with Atticus Finch has felt like an appropriate retreat from the news.

And speaking of social media, you know what’s helping me to really process and grieve in this madness? In January I followed a few people of color who are active on Twitter. I’m not saying this makes me some kind of humanitarian, but it has helped me find places to donate, and it’s been incredibly helpful for me to hear and see non-white perspectives on current events and history. For me, it is easy to feel insignificant in the face of pernicious evil, but I have been trying to listen more and to amplify the voices of others.

So if you want to start small, Janan Amirah is my current favorite tweeter. Her likes and retweets have referred me to a lot of other great accounts too, like her tweet yesterday about Well-Read Black Girl. I recommend adding her perspective to your feed.

I also recommend not being a freaking Nazi.

b perry