Monday, August 23 2021

sleep schedules, online shopping, and deeply sighing

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Dear Journal,

Good morning, everyone. Happy Monday. It's good to be back here in the saddle, isn't it?

It's a very different kind of morning - the beginning of a new era for our family. The house is not quiet. In fact, every damn family member is wide awake and going about their usual business as if it were 10 or 11 AM, and mentally this makes for a jarring experience. Miles throws Cheerios around the dining room while the dogs circle his high chair. Marissa works quietly at her laptop. Rodney, unsure what to do with himself, sleepily stares into the blinking TV.

This is the new setting as we kick off Recker family sleep schedule detox week. Under this new regiment, the boys go to bed an hour earlier. Marissa and I work in the evenings until 10 and our new bedtime is at 11. The whole house wakes up together from 6:30-7:00. All of this, of course, is in the interest of getting Rodney to school on time starting next week on Thursday.

I guess I'm in a lucky position, because the only noticeable change to my day is that I get an extra hour of sleep every night. You might think I would be in a terrific mood today, but my body was reluctant to make the simple adjustment. I kept waking up in a cold sweat with anxious sensation that I was running behind or had just slept through my alarm. I'm sure I'll eventually benefit from the extra hour, once I get over this weird jet-lag effect.

"Of course our first day of doing this had to be on a cozy rainy day," gripes Marissa. We both stare out the window at the dreary sky. It's true - it's the best kind of weather for climbing back into bed, and it feels like the nap-friendly ambience mocks us on our first day of this experiment. I think I even just heard a swell of gentle thunder in the distance.

Marissa probably has the worst of it. She's waking up a whole two and a half hours earlier, and she will be the one to drive Rodney to school in the morning and deal with Miles.

By far the most fun part of our morning was watching Rodney acclimate. Usually, Rodney is already wide awake, throwing toys around his room, chomping at the bit to come out at 9:30 AM. But at 7:00 AM, he was still sleeping like a baby. Marissa nudged the dimmer on his bedroom light. "The light is kinda pretty bright," he complained. "Let me check if it's daytime outside." He shuffled over to his window and peeked behind the curtain. He shrugged and climbed back into bed to go back to sleep. Marissa and I chuckled.

"This is when we wake up now, dude," said Marissa. Rodney sat back up, warming up to the idea.

The dogs are also adjusting to the change. Ollie, always the easy going companion, seems content with whatever we do. Ziggy was furious. Out of protest, she curled up on Marissa's blanket to prevent her from making the bed. Ziggy trickled down the stairs behind everyone, and this morning she has plenty of judgemental glances and sleepy groans to emphasize how she feels about all of this.


Ziggy is in her living hell right now.

Minnie was ecstatic to see everyone. She is always so bored in the mornings. Even with her pick of all the playroom toys to destroy by herself in a quiet house, it's clear that she would rather have the company. She lunges at Ziggy trying to entice her to play, which is of course not going very well.

So as weird and unnatural as our new mornings feel, some things didn't change. We still have work, writing, and of course hot coffee.

Sip. How did the weekend go for you? Our family didn't get up to a whole lot. While Marissa was away at an agility trial, the boys and I hung around the house and watched a Bears game.

I did some online shopping this weekend. I ordered some new supplies for recording spiders, and we finally gave up on the dining room computer keyboard. Get this - I ordered the exact same model twice. The first one lasted us almost two years before we spilled coffee on it and had to get a replacement. The second one only lasted two months before the R key began to stick. Just for fun, I picked out a new keyboard with a programmable rainbow backlight so that even if it sucks, at least we'll get some short term entertainment out of it.

Meanwhile, Marissa has been busy getting ready for today's series release. She spent most of the evening editing photos and setting up her shop page. Watching her work from the dining table, I finally appreciated how tedious she finds working on the computer.

"That looks like a lot of fun," I said sarcastically.

"What?" said Marissa, tiredly rubbing her eyes.

"Editing photos. Clicking around Squarespace. You look miserable." I said.

"How can you tell?" she asked, still trying to track with my point.

"You keep sighing. You've sighed deeply like four times in the last minute." I laughed.

It was hard to ignore once I pointed it out. Marissa continued to work at the computer, and each time she let out a deep sigh we both laughed.

"I probably sigh a lot around Rodney too," she said.

"I'm a fan," I remarked. "I think I'm going to start deeply sighing while doing things, it's kind of satisfying."

Ugh. What a weird morning. It's going to take a while to get used to this. There's certainly plenty to sigh about.

Thanks for stopping by today, have a great Monday everybody.