(Sunday Paper, Volume II, Issue 47)
Friday morning I overslept.
It didn't affect things all that much - we still made it everywhere we needed to be on time.
It's just that - well, if you've learned anything about me in the past two years of Sunday Papers (or if you've been a reader or friend for longer than that you've known this for a far longer time): it's that I thrive on routine. So it wasn't my favorite thing.
But it makes today a good day to tell you about the daily routine - at least the morning routine.
It's something I've been hinting that I would write about here for a long time - it's possibly the most anticipated Sunday Paper in history.
I hope it lives up to the hype.
The morning routine doesn't really even start in the morning. It usually starts the day before.
Sometime in the afternoon or evening (right before bed if I haven't prepared enough in advance), I'll set the coffeemaker for 6:30am.
This is the most critical part of the morning routine, because if I ever forget to do this I have another step added to the morning routine and in that case it isn't even a routine anymore.
It's just chaos.
So the coffeemaker gets set for 6:30am. My alarm is set for 6am. In September at the start of the school year I am up right at 6. By this point in the year that snooze button gets hit more and more and I don't wake up until closer to 6:30 or 6:45. (Friday it was 7 by the time I got myself out of bed. CHAOS.) (Also, parenthetically, Kathy has had a new routine the past several months where she is up and out super-early and back from the gym usually before I'm even awake. More on her role in the morning routine later.)
Monday and Tuesday I might not shower right away. Wednesday through Friday I have to shower right when I wake up because I have to be out to work right after dropping the kids off.
Then it's coffee time.
Monday and Tuesday I might be able to have a couple of sips of coffee while I start peeking through the newspaper (which Kathy has brought inside after she got back from the gym!). Wednesday through Friday it's sips of coffee while I'm doing everything else.
What is everything else?
Depends on when the girls are up. I've heard tell of houses where parents are stressfully trying to wake up children to make it to school on time.
That is not the case with these girls. They are pretty much always awake by 7am.
So around 7am I'm preparing breakfasts (one usually has a buttered bagel, one will have toast and a granola bar, and one will have some kind of egg-and-English muffin dish) and lunches (three sandwiches and three fruits). I always think it's funny that I'm responsible for preparing four breakfasts and four lunches a day now. When I was in my teens and we were home for the summer there was kind of a battle of wills about who would make who lunch. I pretty much never made my own lunch and my sister made fun of me for it. So now whenever I do anything responsible I think of her and how much she'd be in disbelief if she ever saw how responsible I was now. (Side note: She's seen it. It's not that impressive.)
Once I get the girls' breakfasts and lunches set (sometimes this involves cutting up apples, sometimes pulling grapes out of a bunch - so some days are more labor-intensive than others) I can make my own breakfast, and then I'll get to look at the newspaper again. (But reading the newspaper is an all-day thing for me. I'm not getting through it during the breakfast sitting. If you have any advice about how to streamline my newspaper reading process I would gladly take it.)
Then it's brushing teeth and brushing hair and making sure the girls are dressed (they are all pretty independent with this) and then getting them to school. We pack up in an organized way (Water? Check. Lunches? Check. Snacks? Check. Folders with completed homework? Check. In this way the girls benefit from having a former teacher getting them out the door.), then if we're walking we leave the house by 8:35 or so and if we're driving by 8:45 or so.
Saturdays we have no activities so things are a lot less structured. (I'm OK with it!) And Sundays, of course, I make everyone sit around and read the Sunday Paper. Just like we all do. Right?
*I would love to read about some other morning routines. I'm kind of proud of how well things go on a day-to-day basis around here. Do you have something you're proud of in your routine? Share if you'd like.
*Pretty normal week, I guess. I finally wrote out that piece I'd been thinking about for a bit. Next week I'll be working early in the week because of the holiday on my normal work days, and I'll have the chance to focus on different types of writing at work, so that's something to look forward to.
*Made it out to the open mic on Monday, and Tuesday I went to check out a new show that happens every Tuesday in the downstairs area of Redbones in Somerville. It's a pretty good spot, if you're in the area and are looking to check out a show.
*Saturday night, as I told you last week, I performed for the last time at the Comedy Studio in its current form on the third floor of the Hong Kong in Harvard Square. This week they also announced the future of the Comedy Studio which is very exciting. It'll be moving to the new Bow Market in Union Square and this article shows a floor plan of the new club and it looks great and I'm very excited about its future.
*I thought the show Saturday night went pretty well. Then afterwards I went to Laugh Boston and watched Dana Gould's late show and he just destroyed. So that took me a notch down off my high horse thinking I was so great.
*Quiet Thanksgiving week - there's a show in New Hampshire next Sunday night...and you can always keep tabs on me with the 'Comedy Shows' link above. A show I'm not on that you might want to check out is Monday night at Meadhall in Cambridge - it's a great show run by great people in a great little spot and it's once a month and you should support it.
What I've Been Enjoying
*I was out with the girls Friday evening. We switched past 106.7 in the car on the way home from dinner and it had just made the switch to Christmas music 24/7. (I'm guessing the switch happened around 5pm because I am sure it wasn't Christmas music on the way to dinner.) I wasn't ready for it yet. (I will be on Friday, after Thanksgiving.) But I'm excited to tell you that Tom Chaplin just released an album of Christmas songs and like everything else he's done I think it's great. Well, I haven't listened to it yet, but I'm sure it will be great. Because I've listened to the single from the album, Under A Million Lights, and it's a typical enjoyable Tom Chaplin/Keane catchy song. Give it a listen.
I was kind of amused by this line too, from the e-mail about the album release: "...features four re-imagined versions of well-loved Christmas classics, such as Walking In The Air, Stay Another Day, and 2000 Miles." Don't know about you, but I've never heard of those 'Christmas classics'. Maybe England has different Christmas music than we do. Or maybe by "re-imagined" they mean those are just songs with different words sung to the tune of 'Rudolph The Red-Nosed Reindeer' or something.
*I told you a couple of weeks ago when we talked birthdays that my sister was due to have a baby soon. That baby waited until a day all her own - so now November 13 is taken. And yes, it's a her, so Kathy and I have our first niece.
*I've said this before but the reason I find morning routines so interesting is because whenever I get together with my college friends Justin, Kevin, and Dave this is a topic of conversation that always comes up. (We haven't been all together in one place in a bit, so I'm curious how things might have changed.) And I always enjoy hearing about what others are doing to prepare for their day so I thought you might be interested too.
*This has also been my back-pocket Sunday Paper for if I run out of topics for quite a while so if I run out of ideas again I hope I can come up with something to write about. I take comfort in the fact that the morning routine does change season to season...and there's always the afternoon routine.
*One more word about morning routine: Kathy is usually out the door to work by 7:30am. But if she's not for whatever reason, the girls forget every part of our routine and it's a hassle getting them out the door with their belongings. (And if I'm ever on the road or out the door earlier than usual and Kathy does drop-off I am a nervous wreck.)
*Friday was one such day - meaning Kathy was home later than normal. (Our oldest almost forgot her flute.) That's because she was off to Germany later in the day. (Kathy. Not the flute kid.) She's there safe. She'll be back for Thanksgiving. And the Sunday Paper will have its first international reader this week! (I hope.)
*She's in Frankfurt. (Still talking about Kathy.) I told her to say 'Ich Bin Ein Frankfurter'. Which, of course, means, "I am a Berliner." Just kidding. It's obviously "I am a jelly donut."
*John. How, you ask, with Kathy in Germany, did you end up being able to go to both The Comedy Studio and Laugh Boston on Saturday night? The answer is very supportive family. Or maybe just family that really enjoys spending time with my daughters. Regardless, it's appreciated.
*I am pretty sure I've heard of the band 'Cage the Elephant' before...but I've looked into them and can't figure out where or when. And now I keep hearing the song 'Whole Wide World' on the radio and I can't get enough of it and I guess it's a cover but I don't know of it by anyone but them. Maybe I saw them on something like 'The Tonight Show'? I don't know. But if you get a chance to hear it that song is really good.
*Remember! Throw some questions out and I'll have an entertaining question and answer Sunday Paper to close out the year. Otherwise I'll have to make up fake questions. You know, like Parade does.
*(Sample fake question:
I love the comedian John Sucich. What's he up to in February 2018? Any big comedy festivals? - Sandra, Queens, New York
After a successful 2017 for John, everyone's favorite comedian is participating in the North Carolina Comedy Festival in February 2018!
End Sample fake question. Ask some questions so we're not forced to do that.)
*Have a Happy Thanksgiving. I am grateful to you for reading my work. And supporting my comedy. And being a friend. Or, more likely, a family member. OK. Who are we kidding? Hi Mom. I'll just say Happy Thanksgiving to you in person later this week.
(*Are my eyes messed up or is some of this written in a different font than usual. Or maybe it's just in the draft form? I don't know. Something looks different. I don't think I did anything different.)