Day 29: Grocery shopping & a scary pic

button1 Day 11: A few random photos, and we attend a bridal shower
As I suspected, yesterday’s headache was part of the mystery virus that seems to be toying with us.  Only Parker has hurled, but there have been several complaints of headaches and a few stomachaches, and last night PerryBoy and Calvin both had fevers.

Poor Calvin is still miserable, but the rest of us are mostly better, some of us with ibuprofen in our bloodstreams and others without.

Moving on:

Yesterday Natalie made me a notebook, following the instructions in her book Paper Made!: 101 Exceptional Projects to Make Out of Everyday Paper.  I let her decorate it with pages from a Calvin & Hobbes book that had been loved to death.  She chose mom-themed strips for my cover.  I love it so much I almost don’t want to write in it.  Maybe I’ll save it for something special.

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She hand-stitched the binding.

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And made a flap to hold it closed.

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Megan and I went on a grocery shopping trip late this morning.  Our first stop: Chick-Fil-A, where I used a gift card I received last Christmas to treat her to a breakfast sandwich.  We were supposed to share, but she ate too fast.  I forgive you, Megan.

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We got to Costco at 9:30, and I thought I had discovered the secret to avoiding Costco crowds.  Yes, arriving 30 minutes before the store opens does tend to help with crowds, but it’s hard to get groceries that way.

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We went to another store first, then came back and found the parking lot full, as usual.  I think our city just needs another Costco.

In the afternoon, I took not one, but two kids out to celebrate completion of books.  Rachael finished her first chapter book, and Perry finished his math book.  They could have gone separately but thought it would be more fun to go together and share both treats.

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Perry went for a doughnut, and surprised me by choosing a modestly sized one instead of the bear claws, apple fritters, cinnamon twists and other jumbo options that fell within the acceptable price range.  I think it was the orange icing and sprinkles that got his attention. Rachael chose a half-price Cherry Limeade during Happy Hour to keep it around the $1 price point.  Perry was duly impressed, and told her so.  “Whoa, that was a good idea!”

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Remember when I said I hate having my picture taken?  That’s because they usually look like this.  Go ahead, shrink back in horror while chuckling nervously.  I did.

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Dinner tonight was a rotisserie chicken from Costco with homemade artisan bread, roasted green beans with garlic (not as good as they sound; they were tough and under-cooked), mashed potatoes and sweet potatoes.  The chicken bones are in the freezer, waiting for some onion peels and celery trimmings so I can make a pot of chicken stock.

If you’re wondering why I never mention dessert, it’s because three members of the family are fasting from sweets this month.  We’re all eating much less sugar this month, partly out of courtesy and partly because one of the fasters is also our primary dessert cook.

After dinner, Perry and the older girls went to Krav.  The six of us usually take turns, but I stayed home tonight to be with my sick little guy.  To pass the time we did dishes, read several chapters of The Tale of Sandy Chipmunk, and sold some exercise equipment. Now my little sicko is sleeping peacefully in his playpen next to me, and I’m off to bed.


More 31 Days here


  1. Everyone seems to be assuming you took that picture of yourself? I assumed it was taken by a shorter family member, I know I have tons of up shots my kids have taken of me, especially if they are playing with my phone. It is only when my oldest or my husband takes the photo that I feel I have a chance at a good angle.

    • Actually, I did take that pic of myself – but I knew it was a supremely unflattering angle. That’s why I did it. I just happened to lay the phone in my lap with the camera on, and when I looked down I said, “Oh. I have to save this.” It was so bad I knew it would make me feel better about any future photo that could ever be taken. 🙂

  2. Julie Tysh says:

    Kim, about the pic– EVERYONE, and I mean EVERYONE looks less than flattering when the angle of the camera is from down pointing up. I’m still in my 20’s and I look horrific from that angle. That angle is the death of photogenic-ness. Next time, try a selfie with the camera up higher, pointing down at you, just enough so that you have to tilt your head up, but not exaggeratingly so. The camera should be a little off to one side, not directly in front. So, try that angle, and be surprised! You’re lovely and that angle will paint an accurate portrait! And don’t forget to post the pic. =D And if you don’t get around to it, tell me where I can email you a before and after selfie of myself with those two competing angles. I just need you to see the difference! p.s. Thanks for being so candid with us, it’s truly refreshing.

    • Thanks, Julie. I know it was the worst possible angle, and it’s probably also the angle that is used most often for me, since most pics of me are taken by short people. That’s why it amused me, or I would never have shared it!
      I’ll try to take another pic from a higher angle, just for comparison. I’ll do it again in the car, just to keep things comparable, and with no makeup. 😛 But if you never see it, that might be because it didn’t look much better. 😉

  3. Candid shots are not my favorite either. Neither are my “portrait” shots. ick. Oh well. Thanks for keeping it real, Kim. You know you can let your hair down with us. And thank you for reminding me that my small family of 7 can feast on one roasted chicken. Hope you and yours feel better soon. Regards-Jamie

  4. Sheila in MO says:

    You did it. I actually laughed out loud for real. Not the forced laugh, sarcastic laugh, nervous laugh, or the disingenuous laugh when you are conversing with people on the phone. Like a real I-totally-get-this and it is REALLY funny kind of laush. I LOVE that you posted that picture of yourself. Now I know that you are a normal attractive/cute mom… and we are the exact same age… and I am quite sure that is precisely what I look like in a close-up. I’m not sure why that is, everything gets distorted like the proportions are all wrong. Ex: if you have an oblong/oval face suddenly it becomes stretched and even longer? Whatever. It seems only the teenager crowd and younger can get away with the “selfie.” They even look good while trying to make weird faces. I only have this to say Kim: MORE PLEASE.

  5. This year I have both a Costco and a Sam’s Club memberships and out of habit I have not gone to Costco, oh I have tried but they where closed both times. My mom put me on her business account so at Sam’s I can get in at 8. I go about 2x a month. I may try Costco again next week so it won’t be complete waste of money.

  6. MotherLydia says:

    The Oak Hill Costco in Austin is busy — but workable. The North Austin one is TERRIBLE; we got rid of our Costco membership and went with Sam’s Club instead because I got tired of dealing with the crowds there. (And I can do fast runs to Sam’s Club, we have one so close!)

    Now they are opening a third Costco in Austin. Still not at all convenient though.

    • In defense of Costco, the parking lot is the only place that crowds really show things down. Checkout lines are often long but the checkers there are super efficient, so even very long lines move quickly and I’m rarely in line more than 3-5 minutes. I hear that Costco pays and treats their employees very well so they have a low turnover, and it really shows.

      • In our area, the crowds show the most in the line for buying gas at Costco. It often extends into the mall’s general road and occasionally all the way to the street. Fortunately, we live nearby and can buy our gas shortly after the pumps open at 7:30 am, before the lines form and long before the store opens.

  7. That notebook is almost too precious to write in!

    My least-crowded shopping experience at Costco might have been when I inadvertently arrived about 10 minutes before closing time. The employee at the door urged me to start my shopping in the far end of the store and work back to the front. None of the employees seemed anxious to get the remaining customers out after the store closed. However, I completed my shopping as quickly as I could, and I’ve never tried this arrival time again. It worries me that I might be contributing to staff members having to stay past their scheduled departure times, and I remember how I felt (especially my feet) at the end of a long day when I was a supermarket cashier.

    I’m in awe of how much you accomplish in a day! I’d be interested in reading your time management and organizational tips.

  8. You said chicken not chickens……did your entire family only eat one chicken? My family of 4 does that.

    • We could easily eat 2, but we found that one plump bird provides a serving for each of us. Two chickens would be expensive, but if we can get by on one then it’s a very reasonably priced meal that we enjoy often.

      • Laura Nilsen says:

        We have 6 boys and 2 girls. We try to leave the 2nd chicken for lunch but boys eat sooooo much!!! If I serve a bunch of sides we can get away with 1 but then the 10yo still needs a few eggs (tape worm?)!

        • Laura, my family would certainly eat a second chicken if we had one, but our general rule is: One serving of meat; if you’re still hungry, there’s plenty of other food to fill you up. That wasn’t always the rule, but we have learned that this rule is extremely helpful if we want to enjoy meat on a regular basis.

          • curious to see what happens when those boys get bigger I seriously don’t know how you do it! My 17 year old eats like a horse.

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