April Rose & Thorns – A monthly recap of the highs and lows experienced each month.
Rose: Sister-Sister Trip
This month I collaborated with Guess Where Trips, a Canadian business that creates surprise one-day self-guided road trips. Most of the itineraries cover the Canadian providences, but they have recently expanded into the States to include Florida and Georgia. By default, I almost set out on this road trip solo, but the stars aligned, and both sisters and my three-month-old niece loaded up in the car for a spooky weekend getaway. The road trip took us through fairy trails, coffee shops, graveyards, and abandoned ruins. Eventually, we ended our day at the beach, where our room overlooked the beach and a construction crew repairing damage from last fall’s hurricane damage. In the morning, we spent time at the beach, where my niece dipped her tiny toes in the ocean for the first time. Dressed in her doll-sized swimsuit and heart-shaped sunglasses, she took in the soothing sights and sounds while napping under the shade of her umbrella. She’s definitely a beach baby.
I never believed it when people would say, “Everything is new when a baby comes into your family.” But, (like most things), I was so wrong. Travel time between places does take twice as long, and I never thought I would find myself washing baby bottles in the sink of a hotel. However, each place we stopped along our road trip seemed to have a sparkle to it. The mundaneness of stopping at a coffee shop is usually forgettable within a month, but with a baby on board, our coffee shop stop turned into a core memory of my niece meeting the local ducks while perched on my sister’s lap. Even as I type this, it sounds mundane, yet it has stuck in my memory when I reflect on our trip.
I’m so grateful to have siblings. As we get older, I appreciate having a close relationship and spending time with them more than ever. It’s like having built-in friends who share all the same childhood memories and traumas (like broken arms, church camp, and being chased by our mean chickens in the backyard). We can laugh and cry about the same things, but most of all, they are always there when you need them.
Thorn: Nights to Days
It’s been a long eight months of working night shift. This month I’m back in the land of the living, working under twelve hours of daylight. As much as I have been looking forward to having a normal sleep schedule, the transition has been worst than I’ve experienced in the past. My brain feels foggy, and I’m so tired many times I lose my train of thought midsentence. This transition has been like the worst jetlag, but instead of waking up in a new and exciting city, I’m waking up to go to work.
I do see the light at the end of the tunnel. After two weeks of waking up in the middle of the night, panicking that I’d missed my alarm, I am happy to report I’m finally sleeping through the night. The best part (and what I always look forward to) is that my days off are much more productive. Although you probably can’t tell from just viewing my life through the lens of the internet, I’m motivated to do more in a day than I am when I’m on nightshift. Just the other day, I filmed two reels for Instagram, painted my mom’s entire condo, and changed out the light switches in just ten hours of daylight. All of this is to say; it’s been a sleepless month, but I’m looking forward to spending the summer in the sun.
Rose: Reading Is Fundamental
The noise of the internet is starting to bore me. It’s an endless loop of trending songs overlaying someone’s carefully curated life. I’m the first person to admit guilt to this internet crime. Over time it wears on all of us who subscribe to the never-ending scroll of the warped lens that everyone is having a better time than you.
To distance myself from the noise, I’m returning to the quiet of reading books before bed. I know this isn’t a novel idea (I clench my teeth as I can feel people’s eyes rolling). But I have forgotten how calming reading can be. After a run last week, I returned to my neighborhood lending library to pick up a book. This month’s choice is Lipstick Jungle.
I could easily download a book onto my phone or tablet for unlimited choices. But this reading exercise is about putting away all screens before bed. I’ve decided to limit my options to the small wooded box posted in my neighborhood to select my reading material. This month is a book about a trio of alpha females navigating their personal and professional lives in New York. Next month’s book could be about time travel to a distant universe or a biography of Margret Thatcher. Who knows? These choices rest in the hands of the lending library and I couldn’t be more excited!
Manatee Coffee – It’s been a dream to partner with my favorite coffee company again this month. I discover Manatee Coffee in Costco years ago and it has become a staple in my pantry ever since. As the summer temperatures begin to heat up, Manatee Coffee has released their Cold Brew Kit to keep you cool all summer long. You can purchase the coffee by the bag or get the full experience with the Manatee Cold Brew Kit, which inclues a bag of cold brew coarse ground coffee, a French Press and a cold brew can glass. I know this is what I will be enjoying poolside all Summer long.
Jogo Straw – This coffee accessory is unlike anything I’ve seen before. The Jogo Straw is a metal straw with a French Press like filter at the bottom. The concept is you can make a cup of coffee anywhere you can boil water. Coffee grounds are poured directly into you mug and then boiling water poured over. Allow the coffee to steep, add your preferred cream and sugar and insert the Jogo straw. The straw allows you to enjoy you coffee without the need of paper filters or K-cups. I’m definitely adding this to my camping bag to avoid having to suffer from drinking instant coffee. Now I can make regular coffee from anywhere. Including the middle of the woods.
April Blog Post Recap
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4 thoughts on “Monthly Round-Up: Rose & Thorns – April 2023”
It sounds like you enjoyed the road trip with your sisters and your young niece. Still, you should not let babies become parched. 🙂
I had the best time! I made sure my niece had everything a baby could possibly need. Even if that meant washing her bottles in the sink. 🙂
Sorry, guess I wasn’t direct enough. I was trying to point out a humorous typo. “…my niece meeting the local ducks while parched on my sister’s lap.” At least I hope it was a typo?
oh no! Thank you for pointing that out. I will correct it.